Mineshaft Gap

It's a screening log, no more no less. Maybe I'll have something interesting to say one of these days...

The saddest thriller ever made.

Is it the actors or Cassavetes? Or is it both? Or perhaps is it just that they were the first to try.

Killing of a Chinese Bookie was the fifth Cassavetes I have seen, and the fifth to feature at least one brilliant performance. Gazzara gives one for the ages, and he makes Cosmo yet another of the blisteringly real characters in the Cassavetes roster.

Everyone talks about genre subversion and Bookie, but what is more interesting is the genric development. It seems to me that the film is less a different take on the noir as much as simply one developed out of its time. It's the same American, Horatio Alger ethos that is being subverted, but it is coming out of the 70s gloss and not the post-WWII hope. The pretenses that Robert Mitchum characters saw dying away have disappeared totally. All that is left is the decay.

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