Poison

1991, Movie, R, 85 mins

Independent filmmaker Todd Haynes achieved some measure of notoriety for 1987's SUPERSTAR: THE KAREN CARPENTER STORY, a 43-minute examination of the pop singer's life told through Barbie dolls and other ironic, post-modern conceits. Composed of three interlocking narratives, POISON, Haynes's feature debut, is an exercise in cinema of ideas that, while audacious and occasionally compelling, is ultimately less than the sum of its parts.

Following two brief and baffling scenes--one each from "Horror" and "Hero," the viewer later realizes--POISON opens with an extended point-of-view pan, as a child passes his hand over an eclectic collection of ordinary objects, to...

Released: 1991 Rated: R Length: 85 mins

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