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Romance & cigarettes


Love and cigarettes are both hazardous to your health, but what's really lethal is singing about them, as we discover in one of the most eccentric musical dramedies of this or any millennium.
Bursting into song is one thing. Breaking and entering it is another. That's what James Gandolfini and Susan Sarandon are called upon to do in "Romance & Cigs." It's a tale of working-class Murder -- not the crime, the surname. Nick Murder (Gandolfini), an ironworker in Queens, isn't a bad guy, but he makes the mistake of cheating on his high-strung sempstress wife Kitty (Sarandon). How could he resist the sizzling allure of potty-mouthed Tula (Kate Winslet)? How could Tula fail to resist Nick's puffy mug, paunch and poetry?
More to the issue, in writer-director John Turturro's seriocomic script, how could Nick do such a thing to Kitty?
Sharp-tongued Mrs. Murder is not the type to suffer in silence. She and her vicariously outraged daughters-in-pain will have a lot to say -- and sing -- about it in the course of Nick's banishment, punishment and possible redemption.
Much of the saying (and all of the singing) is surreal. Characters conduct real and imaginary Mamet-like conversations with each other in overlapping times and spaces. If spoken words fail them, they croon a tune and summon the hoofers for a production number when you least expect it.
Date Added: 11/09/2012 by Luc Besson
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