starring Michael Caine, Brendan Fraser, Do Thi Hai Yen, Rade Sherbedgia
screenplay by Christopher Hampton and Robert Schenkkan, based on the novel by Graham Greene
directed by Phillip Noyce
by Walter Chaw Walking a fine line between nostalgia and regret, irony and earnestness, Philip Noyce's The Quiet American, adapted from the novel by Graham Greene, is a lovely film that captures, like Hemingway's A Farewell to Arms, the delicate balance between romance in the immediate foreground and the backdrop of war and politics. Evoking the colonial decay of Greene's work while evincing one of the best performances of Michael Caine's career, The Quiet American stars Caine as a British journalist in Vietnam who falls in a hopeless kind of love with a beautiful girl a third his age. His subsequent desperation and jealousy feel real; take note of an anguished scene in a bathroom stall--Caine suddenly seems to be getting better with every role.