Bob Altman is a left-wing idiot but he sure can make a picture. Today I found The Long Goodbye at JB for less than $20 and there was no question about it, I had to have it. It got a reasonable review over at michaeldvd and I definitely enjoyed it. Points of interest:
Overall, I'd say 8/10 with half a point taken off because Altman's such a halfwit lefty.
- The sound is nowhere near as good as M*A*S*H and yet it is roughly three years younger than M*A*S*H . I'm talking about the detail here, like Elliot Gould's mutterings. Sometimes they sounded like they were voiceovers and sometimes it sounded like he was muttering. No such problems with the operating theatre scenes in M*A*S*H
- The Williams/Mercer song used throughout in different forms gets a bit tired.
- As expected in an Altman piece, the acting was all very good, of particular note, Mark Rydell as a Jewish hood looking just like Phil Spector, and the current Governor of California as one of his thugs.
- Also, Henry Gibson playing a sort of slightly more realistic Doctor Evil.
- Can anyone tell me what sort of car the Terry Lennox character was driving around LA during the start of the pitcher?
- The three days in jail didn't work as a single scene-to-scene cut (but I'm not suggesting some sort of animated calendar or clock trick would have worked, maybe fade to black, stay there 1 second and fade up to the cell just before his release).
- The apartment that Marlowe lived in was fantastic. It would have been fantastic even if it didn't have naked women dancing on a nearby balcony in almost every scene (what were they all about?).