It has been suggested by more than one casual observer that the mental stability of a Kevin Kline movie character is inversely proportional to the amount of facial hair he sports. I would say this theme solidified with his Oscar-winning turn as a goateed loose cannon in A Fish Called Wanda (1988), but its genesis occurred in 1982, when he made a grandiose motion picture debut as a possessive and delusional crumb with a ‘stache opposite Meryl Streep in Sophie’s Choice.
But Streep is, of course, front and center in the Alan J. Pakula film in a role made only more strenuous if she were called upon to right a unicycle while flipping pancakes. In the pantheon of Meryl Streep screen performances, this is the gold standard. Emotional complexities aside—and they are legion—Streep must speak Polish, English with a Polish accent and German. Twice Sophie is described as speaking perfect Deutsch. It is a measure of the actress’s success that the mostly German audience I saw this movie with did not snicker in disagreement.