Return of the Secaucus 7 You know baby boomers are getting old when even their reunions seem dated. Return of the Secaucus 7 has long been seen as the blueprint for The Big Chill, but noting the passage of time makes it extra chilling.
In 1980, John Sayles made the jump into independent filmmaking, investing the money he got for writing the horror flick Piranha into this self-financed tale of former hippies who, 10 years after they were arrested on their way to a protest in Washington, have become lost in their adult lives. Now, they're older, fatter, and yet still caught up in old rivalries.
In the cast of unknowns, you'll find hard-working supporting actor David Strathairn (L.A. Confidential) fresh out of clown college and Gordon Clapp, who would join NYPD Blue as Detective Greg Medavoy.
Sayles put the whole thing together for $45,000 in less than a month, and, if nothing else, Secaucus 7 taught the director how to stretch a budget.
To shoot a rollicking car ride, Sayles actually strapped a cameraman to the hood with bungee cords, one of the many tidbits from his commentary.
Sayles himself has been on a wild ride. Somewhere along the way from Secaucus to Lone Star, he's become one of the great independent filmmakers of his generation — and the journey begins here.