Nicolas Roeg’s extraordinary, Dennis Potter-scripted melodrama is set in a small town in North Carolina where Linda Henry (THERESA RUSSELL) and her husband Henry Henry (CHRISTOPHER LLOYD) are at odds over their sexless marriage and her desire to have a child.
Henry is perfectly content to play with his electric train set and also enjoys being spanked by Nurse Stein (SANDRA BERNHARD) at the clinic where he works as a doctor. Linda, however, meets strange young Englishman Martin (GARY OLDMAN) who convinces her he is the child she had some 20 years previously when she was seduced by a youth at a fairground.
Martin tells her that, after being taken from her at birth, he was taken to England to be raised. Now, he claims, he has come to America to reclaim his missed childhood. While Henry’s sexual games culminate in a more disciplinary procedure than he’d bargained for, Martin and Linda’s own childish sex games culminate in Henry’s sudden return home and violent confrontation that might (or might not) give Linda her freedom.
Potter’s Oedipally-obsessed, open-ended and enigmatic screenplay is perfectly suited to Roeg’s unique, surreally-influenced style and the result is a remarkable work of art in which Roeg’s often cavalier treatment of time and continuity draws the maximum from his material and his cast. As befits Roeg’s previous career as a major cinematographer, Track 29 is stunning and seductive to look at, the work of a major auteur.
Cast:Theresa Russell (Linda Henry), Christopher Lloyd (Henry Henry), Colleen Camp (Arlanda), Sandra Bernhard (Nurse Stein), Gary Oldman (Martin), Seymour Cassel (Dr. Bernard Fairmont), Leon Rippy (Trucker), Richard K. Olsen (Delegate), Vance Colvig (Mr. Ennis), Kathryn Tomlinson (Receptionist), Elijah Christopher Perry (Redneck), Tommy Hull (Counterman), J. Michael Hunter (Waiter), Ted Barrow (Old Man),
Director: Nicolas Roeg
Writer: Dennis Potter
UK, US / 86 minutes / 1988