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MOVIE REVIEW : 'One Night Stand' Runs Out of Steam

November 01, 1995|KEVIN THOMAS | TIMES STAFF WRITER

"One Night Stand" finds an attractive advertising executive (Ally Sheedy), fresh from a divorce from a man she never loved and from the death of her mother, whom she did, going home from a disco with a stranger (A Martinez). Considering how handsome and sexy and confident he is on the dance floor and how vulnerable she is, it is completely understandable that she throw caution to the wind.

What follows is a passionate night of love, which actress Talia Shire directs in her feature debut with a potent mix of daring, discretion and sensuality. The trouble is the morning after this session, as tender as it is scorching, the film, written by Marty Casella, abruptly runs out of gas.

This leaves Sheedy, Martinez and Frederic Forrest (as Martinez's creepy father-in-law) plus other equally seasoned pros stranded in a trite murder-mystery plot, uttering more and more unintentionally funny lines under Shire's clearly committed but increasingly wobbly direction. Had this film not had Shire's name on it, it surely would have headed straight to video stores.

Along with that love scene, Shire is more assured in normal workaday sequences with Sheedy and Gina Hecht as her business associate/best pal than in moments of attempted high drama and suspense. Production designer Albert Smith proves resourceful in working with a clearly modest budget. Cinematographer Arthur Albert likewise does a lot with shadows yet often lights Sheedy with undue harshness. David Shire contributes a suitably romantic score. If you're in the mood for tasteful erotica "Delta of Venus" is a much better bet.

* MPAA rating: R, for strong sexuality, and for language. Times guidelines: The film has love scenes that, while acceptable for older teens, are much too steamy for youngsters .

'One Night Stand'

Ally Sheedy: Mickey Sanderson

A Martinez: Jack Gilman

Gina Hecht: Cy Watson

Frederic Forrest: Michael Joslyn

Diane Salinger: Barbara Joslyn

*

A Concorde-New Horizons presentation. Director Talia Shire. Producer Alida Camp. Executive producers Jack Schwartzman, Roger Corman. Screenplay by Marty Casella. Cinematographer Arthur Albert. Editor Jim Prior. Costumes Louise Mingenbach. Music David Shire. Production designer Rusty Smith. Set decorator Paul Weathered. Running time: 1 hour, 33 minutes.

* Exclusively at the Sunset 5, 8000 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood, (213) 848-3500.

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