All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1167. An easy way of seeing how…
A Woman Under the Influence
Peter Falk is a blue collar man trying to deal with his wife's mental instability. He fights to keep a semblance of normality in the face of her bizarre behavior, but when her actions affect their children, he has her committed
A devastating masterwork of one woman's downward spiral and a dry, humanist deconstruction of acceptable social politics. It is a film about family, commitment, desperation, redemption, endurance and the struggles of the working class. It is a film that sucked me right in with jaw-loosening, goosebumps-inducing acting. Gena Rowlands transforms herself. She becomes the distraught Mabel, an unimaginable character. It is so unconventional and uncompromising what she does in the first half, slowly losing her sense of "normal" public and private behavior. Her performance is nothing short of astonishing. Is she becoming mentally ill, or has she always been this way? Is she really mentally sick at all? The conclusion of her mental state lays entirely on the viewer. This…
Hate repeating old party lines on Letterboxd (is there anything more pointless than 100 reviews that all say “X actor really gives his/her all!”?), but must admit how much I’m struck by the control of Cassavetes’s camera in every scene; the incorrectly assumed improvisation is really the work of a master. What is more striking is that most of the important visual information is often teetering on the edges of the frame. One really great example is when Mabel goes to the bar. On the bottom of the frame, her hand pops in and out just enough so we can glimpse her ring finger. The hand goes away just as the bartender replaces that part of the image with the…
I'm not sure if I can even begin to describe my sheer amazement at Gena Rowlands nuanced performance or my deep admiration for the realism of John Cassavetes. In many regards, I think one could almost classify A Woman Under the Influence as a kitchen sink drama with its domestic tension and entrapped claustrophobic character entanglements. Obviously the domestic aspect is of how small scale the film is set and those involved but I think Cassavete's realism shines through how he frames his characters as well. Rowlands descent into insanity is all the more amplified by how her real life husband Cassavete's films her in close ups while everyone else is usually at a distance. Perhaps signifying their distance in…
"Stand up for me"
The look and feel of this unbearably intense emotional drama is frankly stunning. At times I could barely breathe, but the presentation of this film is intoxicating.
Reminding of the later likes of Wenders and Cimino, I liked how it didn't take sides, all characters here have a perspective worth hearing. Falk and Rowlands at the epicentre give frighteningly real performances. Rowland's character I will never forget, a slightly emotionally unstable free spirit continually suffocated into a nervous breakdown by the social politics in her time and place. The rest of the characters try to get their heads around this character in their own way, with some more dismissively judgmental and destructive than others. The spectre…
If you ever want to experience the cohesion of a director with his actors at its peak this is surely it. Both Gena Rowlands and Peter Falk out on life-changing performances which are captured and brought out perfectly by John Cassavetes. The emotional turmoil and the dark depths of the human mind are aired like dirty laundry in a truly disturbing but completely fascinating manor. The struggles and fights that mark the low-points of marriage and love is what gives birth to these performances of true realism by the two lead actors, and it is emotionally beautiful in the most depressing way possible. A truly amazing film.
A frustrating, nihilistic, depressing and anxious masterpiece. Cassavetes' style and this film together is perfection, and Rowlands gives one of the best performances ever. That's all I care to say. I'm a little shaken.
This is one of the most heavy-handed and histrionic films I've ever sat through.
The acting is not authentic, or "real," - every new minute feels like it brings another effort to blunt force traumatize the audience into applauding its power and weight. And to Gina Rowlands - contorting your hands every other second and thumbing over your shoulder on the others is not a representation of a nervous breakdown. It's a cheap reliance on a tic as a crutch in lieu of a fully fleshed out character.
All this for the idea that in the end, everyone's crazy! Certainly not a new message. And not one I think is worthy of having hoarsely shouted into my face without any…
Damn, what a film. A bit too long, not sure it had to run as long as it did (2 and a half hours), but everything this film really accomplishes so much, specifically surrounding society's perception of the mentally ill and how unjust, or uncomprehensive treatment of these individuals can be, specifically in this era of time. On the other hand, this film depicts one woman's descenion from the patriarchy. What an amazing performance, I felt it could feel her anxiety and mania as if they were my own. Lots of gender issues at play, love the slight/not so slight feminism throughout.
Amazing work from the two leads, though it hit a little too close to home for me to probably ever consider a rewatch. A little too long and everyone elses performance look amateur next to Rowlands. A small ding on an otherwise perfect film.
Interesting perspectives on how society biasadly decides who is mentally ill and who is sane and how blurred that line can be. Gender certainly plays a role in this.
The handheld cinematography and improvised feel of the scenes was great, but the film's only downfall for me is that it often drags in the wrong places and probably would've worked better at 15-30 minutes less, rather than it's current 2 and a half hour runtime.
Madness and hysteria are at their highest when it's at home and the life of an uptight frantic housewife and her frustrated yet concerned working husband are enough to inspire madness at the wrong time at the wrong place that destructs the ideal image of the middle class life through the lenses of A Woman Under The Influence. The approach that John Cassavetes took with filming and structuring scenes in real time and few narrative cuts brought the hand-held shot style close to home as it is depicted and brings the experience of domestic interior life to a visceral result.
Gena Rowlands and Peter Falk unleash their rage and frustration with chilling and genuine results with everything inside of them…
Wow. Wow wow wow. Pardon me while I pick up my jaw off the floor.
My first film of today was a little less gleeful, and more hard-hitting and emotionally powerful. This is one of those which I can't particularly put into words due to Gena Rowlands' incredibly complex and true performance - I can't just call her performance 'brilliant'. It's much more, and so is her character, who is the center point of the film.
I just can't, this was so enthralling, frustrating, unnerving, genuine and distressing.
Gena Rowlands gives one of the best female performances, maybe one of the best performances in general, that I've ever seen!
"I don't mind you being a lunatic."
- A Trip to the Moon
- The Great Train Robbery
- The Birth of a Nation
- Les Vampires
- 12 Angry Men
- 2001: A Space Odyssey
- 25th Hour
- 3 Women
- Only God Forgives
- Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
- Spring Breakers
- A Field in England
Recently, I've become aware that certain films are able to transcend the medium by being completely self-assured in their atmospheres…