Tonight, at 8 p.m. Eastern and again at midnight, Turner Classic Movies will be showing a special “AFI Master Class” interview between longtime collaborators Rob Reiner and Robert Leighton, who will talk about how Leighton’s editing has helped keep Reiner’s comedies fleet and energetic. In between those two airings, TCM is showing one of Reiner’s most likable films, 1985’s The Sure Thing. A breezy teenage romantic comedy, The Sure Thing stars John Cusack and Daphne Zuniga as squabbling New England college kids—he’s a slobbish party animal, she’s a prim yuppie-in-training—who fall for each other while traveling cross-country to Christmas break in California. As has nearly always been his way, Reiner stuffs The Sure Thing with too much broad comedy, and unlike contemporaneous John Hughes, Martha Coolidge, and Amy Heckerling films, the movie feels pretty unhip. But that’s partly because Reiner and screenwriters Steven Bloom and Jonathan Roberts are stealing from classic Hollywood screwball comedies—in particular It Happened One Night. That’s a sturdy frame to put around Cusack, who here develops the sweet self-consciousness that would blossom more fully later in movies like Say Anything….
December 10, 2014 Cable Pick Of The Day