Come Back to the 5 & Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean (1982)

Cher, Karen Black, Sandy Dennis, Sudie Bond,
The Disciples of James Dean meet up on the anniversary of his death and mull over their lives in the present and in flashback, revealing the truth behind their complicated lives. Who is the mysterious Joanne and what's the real...
  • 7.1 /10.0 IMDB Rating:
  • DatePublished:
  • 2018-09-07 Added:
  • Ed Graczyk, Writer:
  • Robert Altman, Director:
  • Scott Bushnell, Producer:
10 / 10

Stunning emotional drama and an American classic

Character studies don't come any better than this offbeat look at small-town self-delusion. Robert Altman, best known for sweeping epics like Nashville, shows us that even on a smaller physical scale he is an original, highly inventive director. The low-budget production uses 16-millimeter photography and a single set to create a desolate, lonely atmosphere that mirrors the characters' hidden emotional turmoil. Although we only glimpse a tiny portion through the store window, we get a perfect feel for the dusty isolation of dying McCarthy, Texas. Five and Dime also contains hidden elements of symbolism that you may not notice at first but add another layer to the brilliance of the film. Still, as with any play, it's all about the acting. And here, the acting is impeccable, especially that of top-billed stars Sandy Dennis, Cher, and Karen Black. Dennis is Mona, the stubbornly (and dangerously) romantic leader of the Disciples; Cher is Sissy, the blowsy sex symbol with a painful secret; and Black is Joanne, a mysterious "stranger" who cracks everyone's delusions. All three are terrific and should have received more recognition for their roles herein. Great support is provided by the Marta Heflin, the delightful Kathy Bates, and Sudie Bond as the shrill, bigoted owner of the Woolworth's. This is not a film for everyone. There is no action, by the traditional definition. But this examination fantasy and reality, how life is and how we would like it to be, is a haunting exercise in acting, direction, and emotional involvement.

10 / 10

Excellent - Wonderful - Fabulous

I LOVE THIS MOVIE. Every actor is perfect. Karen Black totally rules, though. There isn't a thing about this film I would change. I watch it over and over and never tire of it. It's like an old friend.

10 / 10

"Back to the 5 & Dime," BLOWS.. ME.. AWAY!!!

This movie "spoke" to me. Every song, every scene and every line, had relevance for me. The topics covered in "5 & Dime," are varied, and some are gut-wrenching! All of the character's dialogue, wonderfully written, and impeccably performed, by the great cast. Every character had an interesting story to tell. The first time I saw it, I believe crazy Mona, and gender bender Joanne, stood out the most. Repeated viewings revealed more and more, each time I saw it. The store keeper Juanita, who lied to herself, - loudmouth airhead Stella, - mousy Edna Louise, - sexy Sissy, and the very tragic Joe; were all just marvelous characters, and perfectly portrayed by the actors. If you find one or two characters in a movie, intriguing, you've done well. This one is loaded with them! After several viewings, I have come to the conclusion that Cher is actually the one that carries this movie. She's the spark plug. Cher as Sissy, flaunting her big bazooms, and trying to laugh, while tears are welling up in her eyes, performs a masterful piece of acting. It looked real! That is just one of many examples, of her talent. She didn't stand out much in my first viewing, but she is truly a fine actress, and I believe this is her best work. I don't know who to credit for the manner in which the "flashbacks" were performed, but they were unique and extremely enjoyable to me. I cannot praise this film enough, but it's not for everyone. I believe it did poorly at the box office, not really a surprise, with no car chases, nudity or even profanity in it. Years ago, I raved about the movie to a friend of mine. The next time I saw him, he smiled and said, "You got me good!" He thought I had tricked him. He rented the movie and turned it off half way through! haha Oh well...

10 / 10

A good film with interesting characters

I love Robert Altman films. Why? Because they always tell real human stories. This is no exception. The cast is excellent. Especially Sandy Dennis and Cher. The story of three girls and a friend who reunite in their small town . With Sandy Dennis recollection of how things were being quite different from the other girls. It is excellent. It is soft and sad in a way. The ending, with the same location 10 years after looking old and forgotten. Which holds true for any place at a given time. I wish I could find it on video or D.V.D. One of Robert Altman's best.

5 / 10

Compelling, memorable film

I remember when this film came out... I was an Altman fan then but I could never convince any of my friends to go see this with me (I was in high school at the time). Twenty years later I finally catch it on Bravo, and found it well worth the wait (and boy am I glad I popped a tape in to record it). The acting in this film is superb, as is the direction (as you'd expect). Altman has taken a stage play that takes place on a single set and brought it to the screen in a way that manages to preserve the theatrical ideosyncracies (e.g., the actresses don't change their appearance, or even their outfits in some cases, in flashbacks to twenty years earlier) while still being masterfully "cinematic" in the way Altman composes his images. If anything, the Achilles' heel of this movie is its script, which appears to be taken verbatim from the original stage play. There were times, especially towards the beginning of the movie, when it seemed somewhat awkward, but in a way that probably wouldn't seem as out-of-place in a play. I guess that's why they call it "stagy". But still, it's a minor complaint, and the great acting and compelling story more than make up for it. Overall I give this movie an 8/10.