Mimi’s review published on Letterboxd:
Film School Drops Out - Weekly Challenge 2018:
Week 26 - Revision (2017) - Movement - New Hollywood (1968-1980)
Scavenger Hunt 40 — July 2018 | Film #4
It is the story of a private detective named Jake Gittes who's hired by a beautiful socialite and gets inmersed in a more than simple «love affair» investigation, which not only transforms into a road of lies but also leads him back to his old place, that one that holds the center of all his worries, knowledge and tragedies: Chinatown.
Not only I'm at a loss of words to describe it and failing to review properly, but I think there has been enough words spared on how great is this film.
The treatment that receives this film is great, focusing on all the crime matters and its variables, as well as how its perceived and handled by the different sectors of the society. It shows all the perspectives, the detectives”, the police, the elite, the common people and those who has lost everything because of it.
While it has a closure that it”s devastating, it's nothing less than the true reality when you put the elite next to the security forces and both groups just make everything in their hands to cover or uncover secrets for their own benefits.
The acting is nothing less than amazing, Jack Nicholson embodies Jack Grittes as if that has been his identity all his life, with his fears, joys, sadness and little embarrassments. We have as well, Faye Dunaway in a marvelous acting as Evelyn Cross Mulwray, a pool secrets that leads all the way to the very source of the worries of Grittes, and I think this connection is what make them work so nicely. The rest of the cast does a great job as well, nothing to complain about.
This film is part of the New Hollywood movement, referring to the era where most directors took the movies and their stories in their own hands, and that's exactly what Polanski does. It's all of his own calculated making, from the cast to the technical aspects and all flows majestically. This movie belongs as well to the noir genre, and I confess that this made me reconsider about watching more of it, especially after that personal disppointment that was The Big Sleep (I”m very sorry to Boggart and Bacall, but I fell asleep by the half).
Most noir films have been made in black and white, therefore they tend to be associated and even expected with this particular setting. However, one of the things I loved from this movie is the great use of color, which blows away the usual standarization.
When it comes to music my eyes just went wide when findieeng out that Jerry Goldsmith was doing the score, which just suits the movie, providing sound with a constant air of mystery. It just gets you on the edge.
As for other technical aspects, the photography is lovely, as well as the lightwork. It has one solid script and a great direction.
A must watch!