- Format: NTSC
- Studio: Warner Home Video
- Release Date: Jan. 21 2014
- Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
- ASIN: B00DJ44NJI
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #8,250 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)
Excellent and fundamental in your golden collection. A cult movie and a classic sample of the purest film noir.
It's remarkable to state that the best trilogy of films noir in the eighties were with this one ; Bad timing and Body heat .
Such raw sensuality would easily persuade a man to lose his very soul. Nicholson's part is certainly unscrupulous to begin with, but in Jessica Lange he finds a confederate with even less scruples. The legal loose ends that dangled in the earlier version are avoided this time with a more plausible chain of events... and the story ends when the story ought to end, instead of being dragged on.
Wonderful character and situation development, intriguing and engaging, even when you know the story. Nice twists of the story from the Lana Turner and Italian ("Ossessione" 1943) versions.
Jack Nicholson is drifter Frank Chambers, who washes up in a rural roadhouse run by Nick Papadakis (John Colicos) and his too young (for him) wife, Cora (Jessica Lange). The time is the 1930s, and the place somewhere in the coastal mountains between Los Angeles and San Francisco. After Chambers is employed by Nick as a mechanic in the outpost's garage, Frank and Cora soon ignite a spark of mutual lust that eventually spreads into a conflagration of betrayal, attempted murder, murder, violent sex, insurance company venality, blackmail, and bad driving.
There's a good story here somewhere, so how did it go so badly wrong? Most damaging, there's no likable character for the audience to champion. Nicholson's character is as sleazy and vicious as any role he's ever done. Cora, married to an unsuitable older man for reasons we never learn, initially gains some audience compassion, perhaps. But then, after she demonstrates a cold-bloodedness worthy even of Frank, I ceased sympathizing with the character. Of the lot, only Nick is blameless, but he's such an old fool that it's hard to care.
The supporting cast is no better. The award for Worst Performance In A Negligible Role (Female) has to go to Anjelica Huston as Madge, a lion tamer and manager of a traveling wild cat show, who sports a goofy accent and hairdo worthy of Natasha (of "Boris and Natasha" on the old Bullwinkle TV series). The same award for a male actor is due William Traylor as Sackett, the Los Angeles DA out to nail our heroic couple.Read more ›
Lange is indeed sexy and more closely fits the part of a lower-middle class woman who married an older man, a café owner, for security than the stunning blonde bombshell Lana Turner, who was frankly a little too gorgeous for the part. John Colicos plays the café owner, Nick Papadakis, with clear fidelity to Cain's conception. In the 1946 production, the part was played by Cecil Kellaway, who was decidedly English; indeed they changed the character's name to Smith. Also changed in that production was the name of the lawyer Katz (to Keats). One wonders why. My guess is that in those days they were afraid of offending Greeks, on the one hand, and Jews on the other. Here Katz is played by Michael Lerner who really brings the character to life.Read more ›