Cinema: Two Stooges

NEIGHBORS Directed by John G. Avildsen Screenplay by Larry Gelbart

Among the gifts from Hollywood this past Christmas were lavishly illustrated coffee-table movies, self-exploding toy soldiers and inspirational samplers. Neighbors, at least and at most, is different: a 95-minute act of aggravated assault on the moviegoer (battery included).

Thomas Berger's novel was a suburban Walpurgisnacht, in which a sedentary couple are driven beyond distraction by the bizarre boorishness of the folks next door. For this to work in the movies it must be played either with the film equivalent of Berger's fastidious prose—Ordinary People in apocalyptic dead...

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