Rated: PG-13 for sexual references and brief nudity. Reviewed by: Chris Release date: April 7, 1995 Released by: New Line Cinema
What a terrific movie this is! Johnny Depp makes a believer of me, and of Marlon Brando, who as his psychiatrist, exclaims to his colleague, "How do you know he's not Don Juan?"
Depp plays a 21-year-old patient who thinks he's the legendary lover, Don Juan DeMarco. He's admitted to a New York state psychiatric hospital by Dr. John Mickler (Brando) for 10 days to evaluate his sanity.
DeMarco turns the hospital upside down. The nurses are left weak-kneed by his flowery talk, and even the old doctor is affected by the young dreamer. Mickler, burned out and taking an early retirement, is fascinated by Don Juan's past. His story, as told by flashbacks in loving detail, brings a spark to the doc's love life and he begins to rekindle romance with his wife, played by the beautiful Faye Dunaway.
DeMarco's tales, filled with sward fights over the honor of a beloved, seduction and love, have a simplistic quality of a bygone era.
Dressed in a white billowing shirt with black cape and Zorro-like mask, DeMarco brings his special brand of fanciful courting to each conquest.
The film, written and directed by Jeremy Leven, is clever and very original. It mixes humor, wit and terrific dialogue, along with some pretty charming performances.
Depp is great as the mysterious lover, who weaves his magic on everyone he touches. The playful theme of the story seems to have attached itself to the actors themselves. Dunaway looks younger and more at ease than she has in years. It's good to see her as a happy woman instead of the uptight hysteric that she's played of late.
Dunaway and Brando even have a scene where they're laying in bed tossing popcorn into each other's mouth, and they seem to be having a great time. Brando being frisky - no way! But, he is and he looks perfectly natural doing it. He appears amused by this role and the reaction is contagious, because I was also.
I thoroughly enjoyed this wonderful fantasy. It's the most fun I've had in a long time and I wholeheartedly recommend this captivatingly delicious romance.
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