Why is it that 'Taps' seems such a weak film?
Just watched Taps last night after many years. I expected to rediscover it and enjoy it, but instead, I still realized what a weak and boring film it was. Without really pointing a finger at just one thing, I think rather it's the many elements put together that just makes the film lifeless. First off the performances of all involved are quite dull. Hutton's character is just looks too vunerable and mixed up to pull off believing he's capable of leading anything. I think Hutton was totally wrong in the role, but I know at the time was THE hot actor(Falcon & Snowman is great). Sean Penn is pointless and exudes none of the genius that would dominate his roles in the future. The rest of the students just come across as uninteresting and driveless. The bottom line is you just start feeling as though you don't care what happens to the school or the students. Everyone in the film, including all the bit players, look out of place and unbelieveable. What stands out in the film though(forget the anti cruise petitions)is Tom Cruise's manic performance. It's he who steals the show and your totally drawn in. Perhaps he should have taken the Hutton role.
Technically the film just doesn't look or feel good. I really can't explain it, but I think it looks terrible. ( it it the sets?, photography?, editing??)