The Myth of Fingerprints

Tucson Weekly

DIRECTED BY: Bart Freundlich

REVIEWED: 11-24-97

I must confess I have absolutely no idea what the title means. Which is par for the course since the movie, about a dysfunctional family which reunites for Thanksgiving, left me equally confounded. Two brothers (Noah Wyle, Michael Vartan) and two sisters (Julianne Moore, Laurel Holloman) come home to find dad (Roy Scheider) as aloof and cranky as ever, while mom (Blythe Danner) remains blissfully co-dependent. The story has something to say about how the parents' warped psyches and repressions trickle down to all the children, infecting their relationships in ways they recognize yet can't control. But the characters are sketchy and the scenes just don't seem to fit together. Whether the effect of a bad screenplay or an overzealous editor, I'm not sure, but the result is that The Myth of Fingerprints comes across like a moody TV melodrama with Chekovian pretensions.


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