Review

  • This is one of my all-time favorite movies. I recall reading somewhere that Jason Robards considered this one of his favorite roles.

    It has a great script, and great performances all around (Robards, Gordon, Harris, Saks, Daniels, Balsam). While it features a likable eccentric who rebels at conformity, it avoids the trap of letting the other characters become mere cardboard cutouts who must make the non-conformist into a hero. (Well, okay, one of the characters does have a cardboard cutout of himself. ;-)

    Each character has depth, each character has flaws and wants, and each character has a pretty good reason for being the way he or she is. It shows that while the non-conformist might be more fun in a way, there's a price he pays, and the more conforming characters can actually like who they are too. The movie warns us not to judge anyone too quickly.

    When the movie wears its comedic face, it's very funny and offers some great quotable lines.

    I give this an unqualified 10 out of 10.