Directed by Peter Bogdanovich
Simply one of the best ‘80s movies ever!
Mask is based, albiet loosly, on the real life story of Rocky Dennis, a teenager living with the extremely rare disease craniodiaphyseal dysplasia – otherwise known as Lionitis. Actor Eric Stoltz plays the part of Rocky amazingly well, a teenage boy, normal in so many respects struggling determinedly to live as full a life as possible. Normal in his world anyway. Raised by a single mother heavily into the bike club scene, his upbringing was not that of a ‘normal citizen’.
Rocky’s mother Rusty, played by Cher, is a drug- taking party girl who gives her son no quarter due to his disease – she treats him like an everyday teenager and certainly doesn’t let things like medical diagonosis and a short life span stop her from encouraging him to achieve. For all her faults she loves him deeply and I found myself loving her character. She is stubborn, fiery and will not tolerate anyone treating her son as ‘inferior’. While in the beginning of the movie she appears to have many male ‘friends’ the return of old flame Gar changes this. Gar, a beer-swilling chopper-riding tough guy played by silver fox Sam Elliott, has been an important part of Rocky’s life since he was 5 years old.
Regardless of what you think of the characters’ lifestyle choices you would have to be pretty cold hearted not to be reduced to tears by the unconditional love and acceptance depicted in this movie.
I had all but given up hope of ever watching this movie again or obtaining a copy to keep. Imagine my surprise and delight to find it in the Hastings War Memorial Library. I quickly issued it and planned my veiwing escape for that night. For me, interruptions while watching this movie were just not an option so it was wait until the whole family was asleep, curl up with my blanket and box of tissues. But then I’m a sucker for a good (or even corny) ’80s movie and Mask is definitely in my top 5.
Reviewed by Cookie Fan
Catalogue link: Mask