Acclaimed filmmaker Nicolas Roeg (The Man Who Fell to Earth) directs an all-star cast in this mystical and visually stunning mystery about love and obsession that delivers "visions of horror, visions of ecstasy" (LA Weekly... more ») and a stunning performance from two-time OscarÂ(r) winner* Gene Hackman! Hackman stars as Jack McCann, a gold prospector who strikes it rich beyond his wildest dreams. But having achieved his goal, Jack now finds his passion for life drained; there is no longer anything to drive him. Arrogant and abusive, he becomes obsessed with the motives of those around him, suspicious that even his own family, in their jealousy over his wealth, could make him pay the ultimate price. *1992: Supporting Actor, Unforgiven; 1971: Actor, The French Connection« less
"Nic Roeg made some fascinating films in his day. BAD TIMING, DON'T LOOK NOW, THE MAN WHO FELL TO EARTH, WALKABOUT, and PERFORMANCE are all amazing works of cinema. Somewhere somehow something happened to him -- his muse went bankrupt, or maybe he just got sick of fighting to realize his idiosyncratic and demanding movies in the face of studio conservatism and unappreciative audiences. EUREKA is, really, the last REAL Roeg film available, and, as quirky as it is, it's worth seeing. Gene Hackman, Theresa Russell, and Rutger Hauer all give top-notch performances; Mickey Rourke and Joe Pesci have noteworthy small rolls. While I agree with Leonard Maltin that the courtroom "hystrionics" that climax the film are a little odd, there is considerable visual beauty to be had here, and a narrative that is daringly-structured and unique, dealing, thematically, with questing and ambition -- their consequences and continuity from generation to generation. The early scenes of gold prospecting, in particular, are at times stunning, as is the Obeah (or was it Santeria? Voudon? Don't recall) ritual that Hauer takes part in. If you're a fan of Roeg, it's worth getting this very reasonably priced gem from Amazon. Thought provoking film, if overcooked at times."
"I once had it all. Now, I just have everything."
Allan MacInnis | 08/22/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"By owning tons of books of film criticism, the reviews I've read about EUREKA are so sundry and varied. The validities that critics have brought up about the film (both positive and negative) are justified, which had given me an unsure opinion on the EUREKA's true value. I have watched the film several times and examining the fact that it has never ceased to amaze me, EUREKA has engraved a place in the list of my favorite films. The cinematography (specifically the imagery in the cold of the Yukon) have haunted me whenever I talk to people about great photography in films. What amazes me more is that great actors such as Gene Hackman, Rutger Hauer, Mickey Rourke and Joe Pesci put such faith in the arthouse movement in order to star in what some consider a Nicolas Roeg relic in a realm of such diverse arthouse efforts by major studios (United Artists reportedly put up "mucho dinero" for this film to be made).The film follows Jack McCann (Gene Hackman) throughout his life and legacy. It begins in the Yukon and his crusade to find the summit of all dreams and fantasies...the quest to find gold. Exclaiming "I never earned a nickel from another man's sweat", McCann sets foot throughout the ravaged Canadian wilderness, through towns which are developing into ghost towns as well as the acquired warmth of whorehouses ("Gold smells stronger than a woman"). When McCann finds the gold (in a wonderfully wrought orgasmic sequence when gold flows out like a million waterfalls as McCann roars in ecstasy. We then juxtapose from the iciness of the Yukon to the glow of the Caribbean with wife (Jane Lapontier) puttin' it on the sauce and turning Tarot cards and daughter (Roeg's wife Theresa Russell) woefully throwing herself at a handsome but devious Dutch playboy (Rutger Hauer). Meanwhile, McCann's island paradise is almost literally going to the gods as both Miami gangster (Pesci) and lawyer sidekick (Mickey Rourke) conspire to overthrow his island empire appropriately named "Eureka".The "courtroom histrionics" that Maltin so much complained about in the film's final third are essential to character metamorphasis as the ambience of Hackman's McCann character flows into free-spirited Hauer, who he once scorned in hatefulness. It is important to realize that this character transmographication explains the nuances throughout the film, with its numerous allusions to voodoo and tokens of character's fortune. Nicolas Roeg, who gave audience such stylish and surreal tales like DON'T LOOK NOW and PERFORMANCE, is in fine form and his complete respect for technique is what ultimately makes the film unforgettable.Hackman's McCann character, in a scene with Lapontiere, is in bed looking around at all he has, dissatisfied with what he and his environment has evolved into, retorts "I used to have it all...now I just have everything." A perfect line to express the film's convictions. EUREKA is, in my opinion, the best film of the three years it was distributed over. The film's epic offbeat structure only adds to its message. Some of the scenes illustrating Roeg's technique will make you shout "Eureka!""
J. Kleinsteuber | Bristol, UK | 05/27/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Nic Roeg has made a number of great films, aka 'Bad Timing', 'Don't Look Now' etc but 'Eureka' is a masterwork, a work of true genius. And it stems, like all great films, from a great script.....this time from Paul Mayersberg.
The subject deals with the problem of success. What do you do when you find what you've always been after ?
A fantastic cast headed by the trio of Gene Hackman, Theressa Russell, and Rutger Hauer weave their way through a complex plot based on the book 'Who Killed Sir Harry Oats' by Marshall Houts.
If you like film, structure and complex characterisation then this is a must see. Watch it before you die."
GREAT MOMENTS.....MANY FLAWS
Michael Webb | planet earth | 08/14/2002
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Nicolas Roeg was once one of the GREAT directors of the 1970's. With "Performance", "Walkabout", "Don't Look Now", "The Man Who Fell To Earth" and "Bad Timing" he built a reputation for being a man who didn't compromise his vision to just pander to mere entertainment. Indeed these 5 movies are his most rewarding and challenging works. With "Eureka" Roeg begins to slip. There are some great Roegian moments in the film and the first half with Gene Hackman is compelling at times but as the film goes on it loses steam and just simply turns into a courtroom drama. From what I've read of Roeg, he likes this film very much and while it is very good in places as a whole it just doesn't have that vision that his previous work had. After this film his choices of material did not match his odd style and seem mostly like vehicles for Theresa Russell(it seems he was a better director BEFORE she came into the scene)."
Enough Roeg in the first hour
Michael Thomas Roe | Atlanta | 09/18/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The first hour of this Nicolas Roeg film is vintage Roeg: otherworldly, mysterious, kinky, violent, mesmerizing, confounding. All of the good stuff. The second hour is a drawn out courtroom drama concerning the events of the first hour that is equally confounding, but negatively so. Roeg aficionados should jump at the chance to purchase this. It is a rare find on Amazon.com. I tend to watch the first hour repeatedly and skip the ending. Not a bad thing, actually, as there is enough Roeg to go around the first hour."