The Idolmaker

A showbiz morality play (1980) with the stern, cautionary tone of the 50s gray-flannel success stories: the protagonist, a rock ‘n’ roll promoter played with jumpy, empty energy by Ray Sharkey, becomes obsessed with his career at the risk of his soul, though he’s rescued by a last-minute infusion of 70s “be yourself” philosophy. The ersatz period score is unusually lively, but the milieu carries no conviction: the details are grotesquely wrong. Taylor Hackford directed, with occasional sharp, manic bursts, but the film is sluggish and sloppy overall, burdened with a dismally redundant plot line. With Peter Gallagher, Joe Pantoliano, Maureen McCormick, and Olivia Dukakis.