The Rose and the Jackal

(Jack Gold, USA, 1990)


This telemovie – very loosely based on historical fact – starts like a Western (or maybe the Marx Brothers' Go West [1940]), as the "first secret service man" Christopher Reeve shoots baddies on a moving train.

It then evolves into a curious but largely uninvolving hybrid of Gone With the Wind (1939) with a psychological mystery-thriller, as Reeve and Madolyn Smith Osborne enact a sado-masochistic, love-hate, cop-criminal relationship (with shades of Hitchcock's Notorious [1946]).

Veteran director Jack Gold (whose career started on British television drama in the mid '60s and continues still) has seen better days. But Reeve's 'erotic fantasy' scene is worth catching.

© Adrian Martin December 1992

Film Critic: Adrian Martin
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