Cinema: From the Heartland

NASHVILLE

Directed by ROBERT ALTMAN Screenplay by JOAN TEWKESBURY

Nashville is the genuine article: a splendidly gifted film, vibrant and immediate, with moments of true greatness. Moments. If all goes well, the movie will survive the wild enthusiasm that has already been generated on its behalf.

The movie is a honky-tonk panorama of contemporary America and most of its obvious contradictions: a flagrant, nearly frenzied, workaday energy and a kind of moral deadness; a proud regard for history and heritage and an abiding need to construct a synthetic mythology; a sweeping national certitude and...

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