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Critic's Pick

'Love Field'

February 12, 1995|Kenneth Turan

This 1992 release is one of those movies your heart wants to love but your head tells you not so fast. Equal parts honest sentiment and strained contrivance, it wins us over with yet another in a growing list of exceptional performances from Michelle Pfeiffer. Under Jonathan Kaplan's sure direction, Pfeiffer is incandescent as the vulnerable and irrepressible Lurene, a Dallas beautician giddy to the point of hysteria over the imminent arrival of the President and Mrs. Kennedy on Nov. 22, 1963. After the horrible news, she sneaks off in the dead of night and boards a cross-country bus to Washington for J.F.K.'s funeral. Along the way Lurene crosses paths with a tall, somber black man (Dennis Haysbert) and his young daughter (Stephanie McFadden) with unexpected consequences. "Love Field" is filled with jeopardy and too many coincidences, but even this doesn't kill its emotion (Showtime Saturday at 8 p.m.).

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