Country: United States
Language: English, Cantonese
Script: Robert Towne
Director: Roman Polanski
Starring: Jack Nicholson, Faye Dunaway, John Huston, Diane Ladd
Oscar wins: Best Original Screenplay
Oscar nominations: Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor (Jack Nicholson), Best Actress (Faye Dunaway), Best Art Direction, Best Cinematography, Best Costume Design, Best Editing, Best Original Score, Best Sound
Chinatown is set in a 1930s Los Angeles where the former police officer J.J. Gittes (Jack Nicholson) whom after quitting the police department in Chinatown is now working as a private detective, where no serious jobs like adultery suspicion is quiet normal. But one day, a woman named Evelyn Mulwray (Diane Ladd) suspects that her husband, Hollis is cheating on her. After following, Hollis around the city and finally takes a picture of Hollis with another woman, which is printed in the paper the day after, Gittes meets a woman who claims to be the real Mrs. Mulwray (Faye Dunaway). This means that woman in the start was an impostor, who was paid to set Gittes up into a even bigger mess than just one simple adultery case, but involves every one at the top.
Chinatown is a well structured story, with all the right elements of a great mystery film, that escalates from the lowest unimportant investigation to the worst cases of political corruptions, that can possible be imagine. It also contains many great twists, and even one of the most horrifying twists in movie history. The cinematography is just perfect, it give us a dried out Los Angels with no water, like a desert. It's not the L.A. we're used to. The performances are just marvelous, with Jack Nicholson in the lead as a tough and fearless detective, who's not afraid to use violence. And with the noir godfather himself, the director John Huston, playing the creepy and corrupt Noah Cross, a role that certainly should have gotten an Oscar nomination.
All the good things I've written so far, might sound like an A+ review, so if you feel it's weird that I give it a B stars instead of an A. The reason why is because I found it a little boring, and literary dry because of the cinematography, but then again it's suppose to be dry, but then again it wouldn't feel right to give it full score. I must always follow my gut-feeling. But after watching it for the third time, my view have improved since the two previous times. Thumbs up.
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