Far and Away

Year: 1992
Studio: Universal
Director: Ron Howard
Producer: Brian Grazer
Writer: Bob Dolman
Cast: Tom Cruise, Nicole Kidman, Colm Meaney, Michelle Johnson
15 years now since its release as I write this, this is one of those films who's mystique as a bad movie has broadened and taken hold over time until it's regarded as a laughable travesty today, even though critics and fans at the time were probably very excited by a new Tom Cruise movie and went a lot easier on director Howard, Cruise and Kidman than they would talking about it now.

It's the story of Oirish immigrants to the US Shannon (Kidman) and Joseph (Cruise), who come to the US by providence. They hang around Boston trying to make ends meet in what amounts to a sort of early US Mos Eisley before moving on to the great land rush as the settlers spread westward.

It's a broadly sweeping and lushly detailed soap opera of a movie and doesn't really deserve the panning it gets nowadays. Few American actors have ever perfected the Irish brogue but like all Howard's films it tells a plot-driven story with its heart proudly on its sleeve and makes no apology for the emotional cues and clichés.

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