Wow, it’s been a long time since I saw Flesh and Bone (1993) a decent little pot boiler by Steve Kloves who wrote and directed The Fabulous Baker Boys (1989) and then spent the rest of his career working on the screenplays of the Harry Potter franchise.
I’ve never seen a Harry Potter film (eek!), but I’m sure that Harry’s gain is our loss, as Steve seemed like a genuine talent based on the films he was involved in prior to getting sucked into Hogwarts.
Flesh and Bone is notable for a couple of things. It’s one of the first films a teenage Gwyneth Paltrow ever appeared in (and she’s really quite good) and of course, Dennis Quaid appears here with his then wife Meg Ryan (also good, in a tough role).
I think both women are far better than the men in this film – Dennis tends to over pout a little, James Caan is better, as a villainous father with ice in his veins – but he even over eggs it sometimes. The entire film would have been a little better underplayed (I wondered what Wim Wenders or Werner Herzog would have made of this very American story – it’s almost crying out for the Wenders who did Paris, Texas and The American Friend).
The South-West locations are well shot by Philippe Rousselot, and Kloves builds up a suitable amount of suspense at the start and end of the film.
It’s a slight story, but memorable, and for the most part, it’s aged very well.
Matthew Cooper has been a scriptwriter for hire and UK script consultant for over 20 years. He’s written for most of the UK soaps, including writing award-winning episodes of Emmerdale, EastEnders, Hollyoaks and Family Affairs and has been BAFTA shortlisted and Royal Television Society nominated as a script writer.
His directorial debut, the rubber reality horror thriller ‘Markham’ was released in 2020, his second feature film as director ‘At The Mountains Of Madness’ will be released in 2021. You can find out more about Matthew’s work as a director here.
You can find some of his broadcast credits on the IMDb.