October 25, 1993 12:00 PM

Richard Gere, Lena Olin

Gere’s character has a problem: He thinks he can fly. Audiences have a bigger problem: This murky story of a manic depressive (Gere) and his therapist (Olin) never takes off. When Gere is depressed, he’s suicidal. During the manic phase of his illness he’s a bundle of supposedly charming eccentricity: He pays his lunch lab at a hot dog stand with a $100 bill and tells the vendor to keep the change; he jumps onstage during a performance of Beethoven’s Ninth to Lake over the conducting. Hospitalized after trying to make like a maestro, he reluctantly agrees to a program of medication and sessions with Olin. Hollywood has rarely done well by therapists—and does no better here. Olin breaks two cardinal rules of the profession: She breaches the patient-doctor confidentiality pact, and she sleeps with a patient. But their romance seems a contrivance. The usual therapy session lasts 50 minutes; this movie is twice as long and three times as painful. (R)

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