24 May 2003 | votarus4
Cassavettes The Anti-Hollywood
A man goes into a big, strange house with his family and friends. He is armed with script and camera, and proceeds to create a milestone work of American cinema the key film of the 1970s. Above all else, `A Woman Under the Influence' is Anti-Hollywood, Anti-Establishment, Anti-Film. 1970's Hollywood may have defined itself with films like Godfather, Rocky, Annie Hall, and Deer Hunter but real, unpredictable, chaotic life was Cassavettes' territory. Fact is, Hollywood will never be ready for uninhibited Mabel and her much crazier husband Nick. Nutty as she is, Mabel/Cassavettes does nothing but tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but. Hollywood at best, tells persuasive lies. So
, to get Hollywood ready for the Gospel of Cassavettes, the first thing that must happen is to banish the entire FX community; ship em to Alcatraz where they can make blockbuster cartoons for each other. Second the writers, directors and producers of said cartoons can go Vegas and try to `leave.' Those who remain will be entrusted with putting complex human beings who inhabit interesting lives and situations on the screen not `role models' who traipse through neatly-plotted, highly-improbable, beautifully photographed, committee-designed plots. Get my point? By the way, Gena Rowlands in "Influence" gives one of the finest performances of the sound era. See this film. See it now. Right now.