After Hours (film)
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Martin Scorsese|
|Produced by||Amy Robinson
Robert F. Colesberry
|Written by||Joseph Minion|
Richard "Cheech" Marin
|Music by||Howard Shore|
|Editing by||Thelma Schoonmaker|
|Studio||The Geffen Company
Double Play Productions
|Distributed by||Warner Bros.|
|Running time||97 minutes|
After Hours is a 1985 American black comedy film directed by Martin Scorsese, written by Joseph Minion, and starring an ensemble cast, including Rosanna Arquette, Griffin Dunne, Linda Fiorentino, Teri Garr, and John Heard. Paul Hackett (Dunne) experiences a series of misadventures as he tries to make his way home from SoHo.
Paul Hackett (Griffin Dunne), a word processor, meets Marcy Franklin (Rosanna Arquette) in a cafe. They discuss their common interest in Henry Miller. Marcy leaves Paul her number and informs him that she lives with a sculptor named Kiki Bridges (Linda Fiorentino), who makes and sells plaster of Paris paperweights resembling bagels. Later in the night, under the pretense of buying a paperweight, Paul visits Marcy, taking a cab to her apartment. On his way to visit Marcy, a $20 bill is blown out the window of the cab, leaving him with only some spare pocket change. The cab driver is furious that he can't pay, thereby beginning the first in a long series of misadventures for Paul that turn hostile through no fault of his own. At the apartment Paul meets the sculptor Kiki and Marcy. It seems that a romance might develop between Paul and Marcy but he comes across a collection of photographs and medications which imply that Marcy is severely disfigured from burns on her legs and torso. As a result of this implication, and as a result of a strained conversation with Marcy, Paul abruptly slips out of the apartment. Paul later learns that Marcy is not disfigured and the significance of his earlier discovery is left as a mystery to the viewer.
Paul then attempts to go home by subway, yet the fare has increased at the stroke of midnight and he finds that his pocket change is no longer sufficient to purchase a token. He goes to a bar. The owner, Tom Schorr (John Heard) cannot open the cash register to help him. They exchange keys so Paul can go to Tom's place to fetch the cash register keys. On the way, he spots two burglars, Neil and Pepe (Cheech and Chong), with one of Kiki's sculptures. When he returns the sculpture to the apartment, he finds Marcy has committed suicide while Kiki and a stout man named Horst (Will Patton) have already left to go to Club Berlin, a nightclub. Paul goes back to Tom's bar, finding Tom deeply in grief over the death of Marcy, who turns out to be Tom's girlfriend. On the way he meets two women, Julie (Teri Garr) and Gail (Catherine O'Hara), both of whom apparently like him at first but turn against him later. When he goes to the nightclub Kiki and Horst patronize, a collection of punks attempt to shave his head into a Mohawk hairstyle. On the street Paul is mistaken for a burglar and is relentlessly pursued by a mob of local residents.
Paul finds Tom again, but the mob (with the assistance of Julie and Gail, with her Mister Softee truck) chases Paul and he ultimately seeks refuge back at the Club Berlin. Paul uses his last quarter to play Is That All There Is? by Peggy Lee and asks a woman named June (Verna Bloom) to dance. Paul explains he's being pursued and June, also a sculptress, offers to help him. She protects him by pouring plaster on him in order to disguise him as a sculpture. However, she won't let him out of the plaster, which eventually hardens, trapping Paul in a position that resembles the character depicted in Edvard Munch's The Scream. The burglar duo then breaks into the Club Berlin and steals him, placing him in the back of their van. He falls from the burglar's cargo near the gate to his office as the sun is rising, and returns to work, bringing the film full circle.
- Griffin Dunne as Paul Hackett
- Rosanna Arquette as Marcy Franklin
- Teri Garr as Julie
- John Heard as Tom Schorr
- Catherine O'Hara as Gail
- Linda Fiorentino as Kiki Bridges
- Verna Bloom as June
- Tommy Chong as Pepe
- Cheech Marin as Neil
- Will Patton as Horst
- Clarence Felder as Club Berlin bouncer
- Dick Miller as Pete, diner waiter
- Bronson Pinchot as Lloyd
- Martin Scorsese as Club Berlin searchlight operator
- Victor Argo as Diner Cashier
- Larry Block as Taxi Driver
- Rocco Sisto as Coffee Shop Cashier
The film is based on a screenplay that Joseph Minion wrote as part of an assignment for a film course at Columbia University. He was 26 years old at the time the film was produced. It was originally titled "Lies" after the 1982 Joe Frank monologue that inspired the story. The original title of the circulating screenplay that was read by Scorsese and the producers was "Surrender Dorothy."
The film was originally to be directed by Tim Burton, but Scorsese read the script at a time when he was unable to get financial backing to complete The Last Temptation of Christ, and Burton gladly stepped aside when Scorsese expressed interest in directing. After Hours was the first film of fiction directed by Scorsese in a decade not starring Robert De Niro.
British director Michael Powell was around quite a lot while the film was being made (he and editor Thelma Schoonmaker married soon afterwards). Nobody was sure how the film should end. Michael Powell said "He must finish up back at work" but this was initially dismissed as too unlikely and difficult. They tried many other endings, and a few were even filmed. But the only one that everyone felt really worked was to have Paul finish up back at work just as the new day was starting.
The film grossed $10,609,321 in the United States. Though it was not received well by audiences, it was given positive reviews at the time and went on to be considered an "underrated" Scorsese film, and a cult classic in its own right. The film did, however, garner Scorsese the Best Director Award at the 1986 Cannes Film Festival and allowed the director to take a hiatus from the tumultuous development of The Last Temptation of Christ. It currently holds an 89% rating on review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes. Prominent film critic Roger Ebert gave After Hours a positive review and a rating of four out of four stars. He praised the film as one of the best in the year, and said it "continues Scorsese's attempt to combine comedy and satire with unrelenting pressure and a sense of all-pervading paranoia." He later added the film to his "Great Movies" list. In The New York Times, Vincent Canby gave the film a mixed review and called it an "entertaining tease, with individually arresting sequences that are well acted by Mr. Dunne and the others, but which leave you feeling somewhat conned." The Motion Picture Association of America gave the film an "R" rating.
Radio artist Joe Frank later filed a lawsuit, claiming the screenplay lifted its plot setup and portions of dialogue, particularly in the first 30 minutes of the film, from his 1982 NPR Playhouse monologue "Lies". Though Frank never received official credit, he reportedly was "paid handsomely" in a settlement.
The musical score for After Hours was composed by Howard Shore, who would go on to collaborate multiple times with Scorsese. Although an official soundtrack album was never released, many of Shore's ques appear on the 2009 album Howard Shore: Collector's Edition Vol. 1. In addition to the score, other songs featured in the film include:
- "Symphony No. 45 in D Major, K. 95 (K. 73n): 1st movement" Attributed to Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
- "Air on the G String (Air From Suite No. 3)" Composed by Johann Sebastian Bach
- "En la Cueva" Performed by Cuadro Flamenco
- "Sevillanas" Performed by Manitas de Plata
- "Someone to Watch over Me" Performed by Robert and Johnny
- "You're Mine" Written by Robert Carr and Johnnie Mitchell, Performed by Robert and Johnny
- "We Belong Together" Performed by Robert and Johnny
- "Angel Baby" Written by Rosie Hamlin, Performed by Rosie and the Originals
- "Last Train to Clarksville" Written by Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart, Performed by The Monkees
- "Chelsea Morning" Written by Joni Mitchell, Performed by Joni Mitchell
- "I Don't Know Where I Stand" Written by Joni Mitchell, Performed by Joni Mitchell
- "Over the Mountain and Across the Sea" Performed by Johnnie and Joe
- "One Summer Night" Written by Danny Webb, Performed by The Danleers
- "Pay to Cum" Bad Brains
- "Is That All There Is" Peggy Lee
- Variety Staff. "After Hours". Variety. 1985. Retrieved 2009-12-10.
- Canby, Vincent (1985-09-13). "'After Hours' from Martin Scorsese". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-12-10.
- "The Scandalous Origins of Martin Scorsese’s After Hours | Andrew Hearst". Panopticist.com. Retrieved 2012-10-13.
- Kafka, Franz. Before the Law. Retrieved 2009-12-10.
- Faber, Marion (Autumn 1986). "Kafka on the Screen: Martin Scorsese's "After Hours"". Die Unterrichtspraxis / Teaching German (Hoboken, New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons) 19 (2): 200–205. Retrieved March 17, 2014.
- Making of After Hours documentary Retrieved 2009-12-10.
- After Hours. Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2009-12-10.
- Blair, Iain (2001-11-05). "The Free Game; Stars' Cameos Add Touch of Realism to Faux Documentary". South Florida Sun-Sentinel. p. 3E.
- Schembri, Jim (2003-02-14). "Martin's mean streets". The Age (Melbourne). Retrieved 2009-11-16.
- "Five-film DVD set defines Scorsese". The San Diego Union-Tribune. 2004-08-20. Retrieved 2009-11-16.
- Lawson, Terry (2004-08-14). "Box set collects five from Martin Scorsese". Detroit Free Press.
- "Festival de Cannes: After Hours". festival-cannes.com. Retrieved 2009-07-10.
- After Hours. Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2012-11-30.
- Ebert, Roger (1985-10-11). "After Hours". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved 2009-12-10.
- Ebert, Roger (2009-01-14). "After Hours". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved 2009-12-19.
- Film ratings. MPAA. Retrieved 2009-12-10.
- Hearst, Andrews (2008-05-27). The Scandalous Origins of Martin Scorsese’s After Hours. Retrieved 2009-12-10.
- Emerling, Susan (2000-03-07). Public radio's bad dream.
- "Howard Shore Collector's Edition, Vol. 1". AllMusic. All Media Network. Retrieved March 17, 2014.
|Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to: After Hours (film)|
- John Walker. (1989) "Art & the art world in films in the 1980s". THES / artdesigncafe.
- After Hours at the Internet Movie Database
- After Hours at Rotten Tomatoes
- After Hours at Box Office Mojo
- After Hours at AllMovie