Friday, September 19, 2008

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975; Milos Forman)

I figured I would throw in some more old movies for you to enjoy. Keep up a little variety on here.

A criminal convinces the system he is mentally ill and get into an asylum. He then slowly bonds with the real mentally ill as he plans his escape out.

I am going to try and be hip again by changing my style up a little. The first part I am going to comment on is the performances by all the actors. Absolutely superb. They are all completely flawless and believable, and never feel like they are pushing their part too far. On a character study such as this, it really was essential to believe the bonds of the people in the hospital.

The camera is pretty plain, but at the same time well executed plain. While sticking with pretty generic angles, the shots have a wonderful sense of balance to almost (but not quite) make up for it. The score is a lot of fun, and seems to lend a lot to the tone of each scene as they play out.

Since it has been coming up in several reviews, I would like to point out that this is a good example of how to craft a longer movie. The pace is kept solid without ever tapering off or speeding up. Twists in the story keep the movie fresh, and it never feels obvious (and at the same time, never feels too spontaneous). That doesn't mean boring thriller twists, just general changes in the direction of the story. If it had a twist such as split personality, I don't think I could give it a score even remotely close to...

Score: 4/5

Notes: Indian Chief, Lobotomy, and Basketball

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