|Michael A. Maynez
"City of Angels"
This is definitely not Wim Wenders wonderful 1988 movie, Wings of Desire, though it is based on it. Even though last year and now this year we have had our share of angel movies this one really hits a home run. With very touching performances both by Nicolas Cage and Meg Ryan. There is such sensual chemistry between this two that they literally burn up the screen sometimes with just looks.
Basically the premise is almost stock story, but the stars embrace their subject so strongly that you find yourself thinking what an incredible romantic movie this is, because Meg Ryan as a doctor is so believable. I cannot remember when I enjoyed her so much.
Of course Nicolas Cage is a very persuasive angel, and it is about time he diversify a little after Con-Air, his sensitivity permeates this whole movie. When Ryan loses on of her patients, as the angel, he tries to help only to fall madly in love with her. Thus the romance unfolds, Dennis Franz, provides delightful foil to the romance, as does Andre Braugher.
The music by Gabriel Yared is hauntingly beautiful and sometimes jars you a bit. Brad Silberling has directed strongly and beautifully. He has given Cage and Ryan so many close-ups that you feel you are there with them. The movie could have benefited by a cut of ten minutes of too much hospital background. Still all those angels walking around in their long coats, almost make you think that a western may be in the making. These angels dont have wings or dirty faces, but they have believability.
City of Angels
Directed by: Brad Silberling
Produced by: Charles Roven, Dawn Steel
With: Meg Ryan, Nicolas Cage, Andre Braugher, Dennis Franz, Colm Feore, Robin Bartlett, Joanna Merlin, Sarah Dampf
Executive producer: Robert Cavallo, Arnon Milchan, Charles Newirth
Co-producer: Kelley Smith-Wait, Douglas Segal
Director of Photography by: John Seale
Music by: Gabriel Yared
Production designed by: Lilly Kilvert
Costume Design by: Shay Cunliffe
Edited by: Lynzee Klingman
Screenplay by: Dana Stevens
Rated PG-13 for sexuality including language, and some nudity
Running time 117 min
Release date: 10 April 1998