[after his parents have left, thinking he is ill] "They bought it. Incredible! One of the worst performances of my…
Everyone needs to be loved - sometime or another.
The concurrent sexual lives of best friends Jonathan and Sandy are presented, those lives which are affected by the sexual mores of the time and their own temperament, especially in relation to the respective women who end up in their lives.
Well, damn, they don't really make 'em like this anymore, do they?
While the plot to this film is virtually non-existent, with the film simply spanning 25 years in the lives of two college friends with extra focus on the women that come and go in their lives - what the film tries to do is incredibly ambitious. It's not very subtle at times, but I found it fascinating to be given an insight into how these two characters look at intimacy between people, and how these feelings change over the years. The film explores difficult psychological processes in a really honest way. I thought it was extraordinary how, without hammering it home, it highlights so many different views on…
I must confess: I don't much like Jack Nicholson. Well, his movies/acting, I suppose. I always have to be convinced to like them as I watch them, rather than going into them with the expectation of enjoyment. Knowing he is in a film makes me skeptical about it. In this particular film, his performance is neither distractingly hammy (most of his later career) nor nuanced (The Passenger), and therefore, I remained unconvinced. It's a flaw, this default prejudice, but I am trying to own it.
The film depicts two men who both treat women as objects in their own ways. Nicholson's character embodies confident misogyny while Art Garfunkel's (I know, right) character is a shy, nerdish sort. Both have unrealistic…
Outside of the phenomenal performances, this was pretty standard. Nichols has always been able to get great performances out of his actors. My main problem with his work is how drawn out every film of his is. His stuff begins to really drag for me around the midway point, despite of the great performances onscreen. A big problem with this was that Nichols doesn't really explore the characters. For a film that runs its course like a play, this really could have benefited from doing so. Nichols one grazes the surface of these characters. The fight scenes between characters do not have then power they need because of this. Whereas the scenes of relationship turmoil in Bergman's Scenes From a…
If Easy Rider introduced Jack to the masses and Five Easy Pieces proved he could really act, then Carnal Knowledge cemented the Jack persona for the next 40 years. I swear every line he speaks in the film is quintessential Jack. It might as well be a dramatization about his actual sex life and the self-centered asshole mentality he flaunted with such ease. And leave it to Mike Nichols to deliver still-contemporary direction. Less ahead of its time and more a long-lasting style of storytelling that adapts over time. Like a fine wine, the narrative techniques haven't aged. If you made the film today, set it in 1971 but kept Nichols' same approach, it would still feel fresh.
Mike and Dave's Scavenger Hunt, Vol. 1!, #3: Watch an unseen Jack Nicholson film (letterboxd.com/michaeleternity/list/mike-and-daves-scavenger-hunt-vol-1/)
If you can picture it, this is like "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf" meets an '80s sex comedy like "The Last American Virgin". Not what I expected, much more substantial and resonant, a real punch-in-the-heart downer about how diseased and bleak love and relationships (and even life) can turn out. Fantastically douche-y performances from everyone, especially of course Jack Nicholson; only the 2nd searing, dense, larger-than-life performance (of eventually dozens) in his career, and already as creepy and loathsome as any antagonist he ever played. He wasted no time subverting his growing star status for the integrity of interesting roles. He did the same thing…
Mike Nichols' candid and provocative exploration of the romantic relationships pursued by two best friends (Jack Nicholson and Art Garfunkel), spanning over twenty five years from college to middle age, proved controversial upon its release due to its frank and vivid discussion of sex and the ways men and women struggle to co-exist in harmony. Alternately funny, touching, cynical and vicious, the film still proves highly perceptive and startlingly forthright, presenting a sobering view of the often incongruous attitudes the genders thrust upon one another in relationships, and in particular the power dynamics that evolve based on an unequal division of lust and feeling, gratification and dependence. Nicholson is fiercely wolfish as the impertinent Jonathan, whose relentless pursuit of transient…
Sideways of the 70s.
Jules Feiffer, who wrote the screenplay, had what sounds like a promising idea: to take two college roommates in the mid-1940s and follow their sexual attitudes and activities through to their middle age in the early 70s. But Feiffer rigged the case and wrote a grimly purposeful tract on depersonalization and how we use each other sexually as objects, and, in the director Mike Nichols' cold, slick style, the movie is like a neon sign spelling out the soullessness of neon. Glowering Jack Nicholson (who becomes a tax lawyer) is a jock with a big-breast fixation, and we watch him over the years yelling at his mistress, Ann-Margret, and exploding in frustration as he becomes more and more impotent, until…
I was fairly on board with the opening passage - any movie depicitng college as a hive of socially awkward creeps and disturbing sociopaths is on the right track - but fell off board the longer this movie dragged on. I suppose I have an issue with satires as blunted as this one ends up being (the last 20 minutes are fairly stupid), but I could imagine this recapturing my interest upon a future screening.
I bet they just mic'd Nicholson and let that slimeball go off, lol.
Can you believe that there are TWO movies where Art Garfunkel is nude? What a world we live in.
brb just gonna hack my dick off and throw it in the sea
Not exactly my kind of a movie as far as its themes and subject go, but evetually it won me over.
An odd pastiche of 20th Century American theater and Philip Roth filmed in a Hollywood approximation of Rohmer with a few added stylistic quirks... I feel like I shouldn't like this as much as I do.
There is some undoubtedly great direction within Mike Nichols' Carnal Knowledge - it brisks effortlessly through time whilst still maintaining appropriate character development, which is achieved from filmmaking that positions every moment like it is urgent and necessary. It is hard to shake the feeling though that most of Nichols' early film is simply posturing and merely flirting with the ideas that become fully realised within the brilliant Closer, a film which I absolutely adore. The cast certainly have the gumption for the material, especially Nicholson and Ann-Margaret, who share some vicious and lively scenes that instantly add weight to film that could otherwise be described as flighty.
Art Garfunkel isn't even bad in this but Art Garfunkel?
Movies that are slightly off.
Every film that has ever been nominated for an Academy Award in any category. Enjoy!