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Mickey One (1965)

Not Rated | | Crime, Drama | 27 September 1965 (USA)
After incurring the wrath of the mob, a comic flees Detroit for Chicago taking the name "Mickey One" from a stolen Social Security card from a homeless bum he witnesses being beaten up and ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Jenny Drayton
...
Ed Castle
...
Ruby Lapp
Teddy Hart ...
George Berson
...
Larry Fryer
...
The Artist
Donna Michelle ...
The Girl
Ralph Foody ...
Police Captain
Norman Gottschalk ...
The Evangelist
Dick Lucas ...
Employment Agent
Jack Goodman ...
Cafeteria Manager
Jeri Jensen ...
Helen
Charlene Lee ...
The Singer
Benny Dunn ...
Nightclub Comic
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Storyline

After incurring the wrath of the mob, a comic flees Detroit for Chicago taking the name "Mickey One" from a stolen Social Security card from a homeless bum he witnesses being beaten up and robbed. As he returns to the stage and becomes successful, he fears that the mob will track him down. He wishes to square himself with the mob, but doesn't know what he did to anger them or what his debt is. Written by <JeanneArmintrout@juno.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Number One... In Excitement... In Drama... In Suspense... See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

27 September 1965 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Acosado  »

Filming Locations:

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Studio publicity claimed actor Kamatari Fujiwara created the large kinetic sculpture, called "Yes" in the film, but the work was actually done by Robert Fields, a industrial design student at The School of The Art Institute of Chicago. The sculpture was set up on the ice rink of the Marina Towers apartment complex. See more »

Quotes

Mickey One: I'm the king of the silent pictures. I'm hiding out till the talkies blow over. Will you leave me alone?
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User Reviews

 
Refreshing! One of the most unique American films ever made
24 January 2001 | by (Saint Paul, MN) – See all my reviews

I have not watched many American films in the past few months. Even the good ones tend to be repetitive, not just in plot, but in style and technical aspects. An "art film" in this country seems simply to be a Hollywood script produced for less money. This goes for every era of American film.

So it is rare to find an American film with true aspirations towards originality. And now I see Mickey One. I heard about it quite a while ago, not long after I saw the second pairing of director Arthur Penn and actor Warren Beatty, the absolute masterpiece Bonnie and Clyde. That was some four years ago. Mickey One is not available on video, so I never really thought I would see it, nor did I really care; I was interested, but had not heard many good things about it (it's usually categorized as "pretentious" or an "interesting failure"). But then, about a month ago, I caught a snatch of it on AMC. Then, tonight, I come home from work, turn on the television, switch to AMC, and it is just about to begin. It was only 95 minutes long, so I sat down to watch it.

What I experienced was possibly the most unique American film I'd ever seen. I would cite a few possible influences of this film to describe it: it reminded me of Fellini, mainly 8 1/2, + Kafka + a very unique and difficult to identify style of humor, very sly. Many people who do see this film will probably dismiss it because of its confusing story, and admittedly, once the story makes sense, it doesn't equal up to all that much. I didn't mind that so much. Maybe the sum is not as great as its parts, but, boy, are those parts amazing! For one thing, the cinematography is amazing. The final scene, where Mickey One (Warren Beatty) confronts his fears in the form of an unrelenting, unblinking spotlight. The dialogue is also amazing, too, as well as the screenplay (at least for individual scenes). Take, for instance, the way Mickey's love interest is introduced: to escape a possible spy, he jumps out of his bathroom window onto a trampoline. He comes back to his apartment later to find a young woman sitting in his chair. "Who the heck are you?" "Your landlady said you were evicted. I gave her all my money, and it's dark outside. I can't go now!" I haven't seen that before. It's damned clever. Also, I've never in my life, in American film or elsewhere, seen such a clever use of speeding up the film. Sure, plenty of filmmakers use slow-motion as a filmic tool, but fast-motion, I've just never seen that before (possibly in silent film, but it is not the same).

The best part of the film happens to be almost completely separated from the rest of the film. A Japanese fellow who has appeared from time to time in the picture, who always sees Mickey and waves at him, reveals his magnum opus of modern art made from parts found it the junkyard. He calls it "Yes," and it is this profoundly weird and comical machine that smashes together trash can lids and pounds on piano keys. There are fireworks attached to it, which eventually make Yes burst into flames, which leads the fire department to put it out in a glorious blanket of what seems to be bubbles from bubble bath or dish soap. It's quite surreal, and quite amazing.

Seriously, if you are a fan of unique cinema, see Mickey One. 9/10. And Warren Beatty's great, too, as ought to be expected.


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