Ok, I was checking out some stuff on Keith Coogan, because he's yet another in the string of interesting teen actors from the 80s/90s who just seemed to dissipate later in life. During this I came across a review by Roger Ebert about this movie. You can check out the review here...
Now I've probably seen this movie over a dozen times. It's always been one of those movies major cable picks up for a month or two and runs a lot. So I think I'm pretty well up on the film. Can someone please explain to me why Ebert thinks Ryan(Annabeth Gish) is 15 years old?! Am I nuts here or wasn't she also playing a senior, dating a boy running for senior class president (before Cryer's character), and graduated a few months after Cryer's character is revealed and taken back to Manhattan for the trial? That would make her 17/18 right?
Beyond the age issue, there are other noticable flaws in the review. For instance this quote, "Take a second to think of what you would do differently, if you had your high school years to live over again. Cryer does none of those things in "Hiding Out," and the movie blows lots of opportunities for him to have his revenge against the kinds of teachers and students who no doubt made his life miserable the first time around." Well let's see, he totally rips up the history teacher giving the students and insane angle on the Watergate incidents. He also takes on the school's most popular student, who seems to think the world is there for his benefit (didn't we all know one of him), and manages to steal both his girlfriend and the senior class presidency. Did Ebert sleep through these sections? There's also Ebert's inaccurate description of how Cryer's character ends up staying in the High School at night.
This btw, is one of the things that I get furious for when it comes to reviews. In my opinion no one should even review a film until they've seen it at least twice. Or at the very least they shouldn't make comments in their review (such as "jail bait") which speak directly to facts in the movie without at least two viewings and maybe a copy of the script on their desk. Comment on the overall feel of the movie, the cinematography, or the performances, but don't bother to say anything specific about the plot. As Roger Ebert is a well known professional reviewer these mistakes are even more unforgiveable. It's bad enough that many reviewers today seem to see only the negative, but I think it's time we all started writing to these hacks and telling them that their reviews are worthless if they can't at least get their facts straight.
The less a man makes declarative statements the less apt he is to look foolish in retrospect.