This one really floored me as a kid. I taped it off of HBO and watched it 100 times. Seeing it again after all these years I was amazed at a) how much of it I remembered and b) how the comedy was, at times, more subtle than I knew back then. As a story, yes, it is a little thin. But as an excersize in nightmare-logic paranoia it has few equals. Griffin Dunne shoulda been a bigger star. (I met him once, he was nice and had a very loud voice.) It’s a trip to see the mythologized SoHo of the 1980s. I know enough to know it was never really like that, but when I was a kid I thought it might’ve. When I moved here in 1992 I caught just the tail tail tail end of this scene and I remember nights thinking “Wow, this loft/club/diner/empty block is just like After Hours!” You can’t do that at all anymore, so, I guess, in a way I am lucky.
*note — The DVD features Deleted Scenes. I always watch the Deleted Scenes and I always say, “yeah, I see why that is a deleted scene.” That’s the case here, as well, except for one little scene which may be funnier than anything in the finished picture. It’s a little exchange between Dunne and Catherine O’Hara. . .just a moment for Catherine to flip out and scream and yell and act insane. It does nothing to advance the plot, and, at this point in the story, as things are winding up and the stakes are raised it probably woulda slammed the breaks on everything. Plus it would kinda diminish her surprising nutsy-ness up in her apartment. So I see why it was cut. But! If you know anything about Catherine O’Hara you know that nobody does freak-out like her. When her pretty/tough girl with the ice cream truck belts out “Go home or sit on my FACE!” it is like a cold slap in the face. Hilarious. And worth the rental in itself.