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TOUCH: DVD

SYNOPSIS:
A different take on religion and the media, Touch is the story of Brother Junvenal who is able to heal people with his 'touch'. A former Franciscan monk, he now performs selfless service in the Sacred Heart detox house. But it's hard being a saint in the city, especially since his God given gift attracts a media circus, opportunists and fanatical religious fundamentalists eager to exploit him. He stands to lose his immortal soul in a world where nothing is sacred, and his heart to a beautiful woman who wants his healing hands on her body.

Review by Louise Keller:
Although not destined for greatness, there are some appealing elements about this irreverent comedy that doesn't take itself too seriously; bizarre characters, off-the-wall concepts and absurdly funny lines. The opening credits aptly present the cast as comic strip characters, and a weirder group you would be hard pressed to find. Bridget Fonda as the former church baton twirler and Skeet Ulrich as the would-be saint play it pretty straight, with Ulrich displaying a Johnny Depp-like intensity; Christopher Walken gives a droll performance as the conman who makes religion a business enterprise. But stealing the show is Tom Arnold, who gives a totally over-the-top performance as the fanatic religious group leader August Murray, who is just a big teddy bear.

The scene when Murray, totally captive in plaster casts with broken ribs, legs and whatever, makes an appearance on the television talk show, is almost slapstick comedy and Gina Gershon is vicious as the piranha TV interviewer. Careful casting is also in evidence for the smaller roles - Janeane Garofalo as the ambitious journalist, Lolita Davidovich as the Catholic topless dancer whose son is miraculously healed, Paul Mazursky as the record executive who thinks the Gregorian Chants are "mumbling to slow music", and the priest whose weak bladder embarrasses him at the worst times.

Take your pick of blasphemous, sacrilegious or profane and Touch will tickle the fancy of the thoughtful lapsed Catholic who enjoys a sense of the absurd.

Published March 13, 2008

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CRITICAL COUNT
Favourable: 1
Unfavourable: 0
Mixed: 0

TOUCH: DVD (MA)
(US, 1997)

CAST: Bridget Fonda, Christopher Walken, Skeet Ulrich, Tom Arnold, Gina Gershon, Lolita Davidovich, Paul Muzursky, Janeane Garofalo,

PRODUCER: Cazes, Fida Attieh

DIRECTOR: Paul Schrader

SCRIPT: Paul Schrader (based on the novel by Elmore Leonard)

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Ed Lachman

EDITOR: Cara Silverman

MUSIC: David Grohl

PRODUCTION DESIGN: David Wasco

RUNNING TIME: 96 minutes

PRESENTATION: Widescreen

SPECIAL FEATURES: None

DVD DISTRIBUTOR: Madman

DVD RELEASE: February 20, 2008







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