Cinema: Wising Up

THE GOODBYE GIRL Directed by Herbert Ross Screenplay by Neil Simon

Richard Dreyfuss commands top roles, top billing and top dollar in Hollywood, but it has always been hard to accept him as a top movie actor. Though his brash energy holds the screen, Dreyfuss has built most of his characters from a single emotion—an intense comic anguish. At his best—in American Graffiti, Duddy Kravitz and Close Encounters—he can be ruefully witty and vulnerable. His jittery neuroticism keeps an audience guessing whether he might really fall apart. But there is also a persistent feeling...

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