Monday, September 20, 2010

American movies, 1970-1979

from Thomas McGuane's 92 in the Shade (1975)

McGuane is a novelist and occasional screenwriter, but he only directed one movie and happily admits to not knowing what the hell he was doing. That's one reason why this film, adapted from his own novel, is so enjoyable. A seasoned veteran would have imposed some structure, order, and plot on this loping, meandering, loose, shaggy, hungover, messy collection of character actors fucking around in the Florida Keys, and we all know and agree that plot is as goddamn useless as a fish with titties, to paraphrase R. Kelly. The other reason this film is so enjoyable is that it stars Peter Fonda, Warren Oates, Harry Dean Stanton, Margot Kidder, Burgess Meredith, Sylvia Miles, William Hickey, and Joe Spinell. It's never been released on DVD, which is a crying shame. It's no masterpiece, but imperfections are underrated.

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