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Features

By Kelly Dolejsi
Special to the Monitor

The more depressing something is, the harder we need to laugh, and “Paper Moon” (1973, rated PG) offers just the right combination of anguish and glee. Check it out at 6:30 p.m. Thursday in Mesa Public Library’s upstairs meeting-room theater.

Director Peter Bogdanovich’s Depression-era comedy begins in a Kansas cemetery. Nine-year-old Addie Loggins (Tatum O’Neal) has just lost her mother. When traveling salesman Moses Pray (Ryan O’Neal) arrives to pay his respects, Addie’s neighbors talk him into driving Addie to the home of her only living relative, an aunt in St. Joseph, Missouri.

Pray has the parenting skills of a popped balloon, but off they go, and he immediately uses her tragic situation to the profitable tune of $200. It’s the start of a propitious partnership for both Addie and “Moze,” as long as you don’t think for a second about Addie’s future. 

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