18 March 2010

Five Easy Pieces (Bob Rafelson, 1970)

Of course my main reason for watching this was the presence of Karen Black, who's typically fabulous here. I think I like most of the acting in the movie and I'm also a fan of the writing. I can't decide what makes these 70s movies seem so much more authentic. It's like, even the movies today that try to present real characters are so much more distorted, whether it be by irony, idealization, or stylization. I guess part of it is that the characters aren't just sympathetic or unsympathetic. They come across in a way that feels true.

Sally Struthers's performance surprisingly left me wanting more. I think hers was one of my favorite performances in the film.

Some of my friends think I think too much about class and I certainly feel like there's a lot about class in this movie but I feel like what you think it says about class is probably tied to your own background. I guess there's a sort of antipathy here for the intellectuals and the elite classes but I also feel like the protagonist is an embodiment of the selfishness and entitlement that comes from a privileged background. I don't know what it is about Karen Black in this movie that makes me identify so much with her. I guess there must be something in her that looks like a reflection to me. I'm sort of curious as to how Nicholson's character is perceived by most viewers. I sort of feel like he's supposed to be heroic but that to me he's the real metaphor in the film. Like the film sort of holds up a mirror to Mr. America and says, "Baby, you are the rot." It's time for me to sleep. Fortunately it's barely springtime so the sun isn't out yet. This is my time of day. The couple hours before the sky lights up. I wish it were place I could steal away to from time to time. B/B+

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