Lights, Camera, Shanghai!
Just as highly-regarded “classic” films sometimes don’t live up to their lofty reputations, occasionally a notorious stinker will fail to live down to its low esteem. Such is the case with Shanghai Surprise, the famous 1986 flop starring Madonna and Sean Penn, at the time husband and wife and under the microscopic gaze of the paparazzi and poison pen of the tabloids. Both had received enthusiastic reviews for movies just prior to this, she for her work in Desperately Seeking Susan (1985), he for such films as The Falcon and the Snowman (1985) and At Close Range (1986).
Why critics were so hostile toward Shanghai Surprise is unclear. Though far from perfect, the film is extremely well made in some respects while its stars aren’t anywhere near as terrible as so many critics seem to think they are. If you had no idea who Sean Penn and Madonna were you’d probably notice Madonna’s charisma but also her relative inexperience and wonder about Penn’s eccentric characterization, despite obvious ability as an actor – but in the end feel that the leads come off no worse than okay.
Continue reading this review by DVD Talk – including parts about the Extra Features, the “Fans Unite!” commentary track, ” Lights, Camera, Shanghai!”, the ieght minute long “Madonna: 1986″ and the third featurette, ” I Love Shanghai Surprise!” by ckicking here.
Thanks to our Community member wago70.