Hank and Frannie don’t seem to be able to live together anymore. After a five-year relationship, lustful and dreamy Fanny leaves down-to-earth Hank on the anniversary of their relationship. Each one of them meets their dream mate, but as bright as they may seem, they are but a stage of lights and colours. Will true love prevail over a seemingly glamorous passion? Welcome to Coppola’s Broadway-like romantic musical.
One from the Heart is a 1982 American romantic musical film co-written and directed by Francis Ford Coppola and starring Frederic Forrest, Teri Garr, Raul Julia, Nastassja Kinski, Lainie Kazan and Harry Dean Stanton. The story is set entirely in Las Vegas. The film’s plot was later adapted by Aziz Mirza for his 2003 Hindi film Chalte Chalte.
Film Review: One from the Heart
In previewing his new film, ”One From the Heart,” twice Friday night at Radio City Music Hall, Francis Coppola fulfilled his desire to present his new work directly to the public and let the public decide on its merits.
The public, for its part, was polite. While viewing the film under perhaps the most glamorous possible circumstances, the audiences remained receptive and interested. There was scattered laughter, and there were ripples of appreciation for some of the lovelier sets and special effects. At the film’s end, it was greeted with measured, if not wildly enthusiastic, applause.
So the evening, with its two sold-out previews, could in no way be viewed as a fiasco. But neither was it the triumphant debut Mr. Coppola had doubtless hoped for two weeks ago, when he hurriedly planned this unorthodox unveiling of his ambitious new musical movie. Mr. Coppola’s advertisement describes the film as ”a new kind of old-fashioned romance.”
Mr. Coppola arranged the previews so unexpectedly that his plans became known to Paramount Pictures, the film’s ostensible distributor, only through an advertisement placed by Mr. Coppola in last Sunday’s New York Times. Since then, the director has expressed dissatisfaction with Paramount and threatened to terminate his distribution arrangement with the studio – something he is free to do, because the film is owned by Mr. Coppola’s own Zoetrope Studios.
Paramount has offered very little in the way of comment, but the studio and Mr. Coppola are apparently still negotiating. At a news conference between screenings Friday, Mr. Coppola did not rule out the possibility that he might settle his differences with Paramount before Feb. 10, the date on which the studio had originally announced it would rel ease the movie.
When the film is indeed released, it may in some respects be disappointing, but it will stand as yet another innovative, audacious effort from the director of ”The Godfather” and ”Apocalypse Now.” In ”One From the Heart,” Mr. Coppola has combined richly imaginative sets and backdrops, bluesy music by Tom Waits and drifting, overlapping action to create a throughly American romance with a Las Vegas setting. The sets include a department store, a motel, a suburban street, a row of gambling casinos and a yard littered with wildly fanciful billboard and car parts. The date is the Fourth of July.
When a dream girl appears to brighten one man’s fantasies, she luxuriates in an enormous martini glass or dances on the roof of his convertible. When lovers tango in an imaginary tropical paradise, there’s a cruise ship anchored discreetly offshore. The America of these fantasies, as painted by Mr. Coppola in soft, gorgeous neon hues, is far more affecting and important than any of the people who wander through these landscapes.
Though the film is ostensibly about lovers (played by Frederic Forrest and Teri Garr) who drift apart and then back together, the sets are invariably more interesting than the people who inhabit them. The characters -Nastassia Kinski and Raul Julia complete the romantic foursome – never compete successfully with the scenery. They seem to be living very small lives in very big spaces.
”One From the Heart” has so little in the way of story or tension, in fact, that the effect of Mr. Coppola’s dazzling technical feats is almost superfluous at times; it’s as if Remb randt were painting Easter eggs. From its very first moments, which consistof a credit s equence so beautiful that it’s better than plenty of full-length m ovies, ”One From the Heart” promises a grace and radiance that is only intermittently warranted by the material.
There are ravishing things in this movie, plenty of them, enough to mark it as a brave and original effort. But the bravura moments are as apt to end abruptly as they are to flow easily together. Despite the technological advances that allowed Mr. Coppola to construct a kind of video blueprint for his work, a blueprint he could edit and modify in the planning stages, ”One From the Heart” is often choppy enough to break its own spell. A spell is what it is, though: Mr Coppola clearly means to weave the lights, colors, music and dance into something magical.
So when a woman looks into a mirror and speaks of the man who’ll make her dreams come true, that man’s face materializes beside hers. When lovers quarrel and separate, their images are somehow united on the screen. When they make up, the rain stops and the darkness lifts, and their home is bathed in warm yellow light, while the birds down the street begin singing. There’s not a moment in ”One From the Heart” when Mr. Coppola isn’t after something romantic and glorious, something inexpressibly grand. At times, he even gets what he’s after.
One from the Heart (1982)
Directed by: Francis Ford Coppola
Starring: Nastassja Kinski, Frederic Forrest, Teri Garr, Raul Julia, Lainie Kazan, Harry Dean Stanton, Allen Garfield, Italia Coppola, Rebecca De Mornay, Cynthia Kania
Screenplay by: Armyan Bernstein, Francis Ford Coppola
Production Design by: Dean Tavoularis
Cinematography by: Ronald Víctor García, Vittorio Storaro
Film Editing by: Rudi Fehr, Anne Goursaud, Randy Roberts
Costume Design by: Ruth Morley
Set Decoration by: Gary Fettis, Leslie McCarthy-Frankenheimer
Art Direction by: Angelo P. Graham
Music by: Tom Waits
Distributed by: Columbia Pictures
Release Date: February 12, 1982