THE Player – Robert Altman , director, 2011
JOHN: Fun to revisit one of Altman’s best, and see it stand up so well. Tim Robbins is fantastic. And a couple scenes, real classics: he asks a table full of hangers-on if they can talk about anything but Hollywood (they can’t), the murder itself and his cold blooded look as he sits on a couch dressed in black and tells his girlfriend (Bonnie Sharon), she has been replaced—in a way that brings out the smarmy side in all of us.
GO, GO, GO, GO (4 GOs out of 4)
SPANKY: Don’t forget the ending which cleverly brings this full circle (we are watching the movie Graham Mill is blackmailed to make). And the opening 7 minute, 47 second tracking shot—an homage to Orson Welles’ Touch of Evil. Almost as much fun are the guest appearances of famous people playing themselves—Angelica Huston, Elliot Gould, Steve Allen, Jack Lemmon, Jeff Goldblume, Joel Grey, Sidney Pollack, etc. It’s almost like being in Hollywood and spotting these people on a street corner yourself. Then there’s the irony of Bruce Williams and Julia Roberts starring in the movie within a movie of how the rich (and we know that’s the Robbins’ character) never get prosecuted. Wow!
BARK, BARK, BARK, BARK(4 BARKs out of 4)
In November 2000, Altman claimed that he would move to Paris if Geroge W. Bush were elected, but joked that he had meant Paris, Texas when it came to pass. He noted that “the state would be better off if he (Bush) is out of it.”