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The Arrangement (1969)

 -  Drama  -  18 November 1969 (USA)
6.5
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 1,370 users  
Reviews: 27 user | 14 critic

Eddie is a very rich man who has everything he wants; money, family, success, but a car crash causes him to reevaluate the life he leads. Searching for the happiness he lost, he remembers ... See full summary »

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Title: The Arrangement (1969)

The Arrangement (1969) on IMDb 6.5/10

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1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Eddie Anderson
...
Gwen
...
Florence Anderson
...
Sam Arness
...
Arthur Houghton
Michael Higgins ...
Michael Anderson
Carol Eve Rossen ...
Gloria Anderson (as Carol Rossen)
William Hansen ...
Dr. Weeks
...
Dr. Leibman
...
Father Draddy
...
Charles
Anne Hegira ...
Thomna
Charles Drake ...
Finnegan
E.J. André ...
Uncle Joe (as E.J. Andre)
Philip Bourneuf ...
Judge Morris
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Storyline

Eddie is a very rich man who has everything he wants; money, family, success, but a car crash causes him to reevaluate the life he leads. Searching for the happiness he lost, he remembers his one-time lover, Gwen, even as his wife conspires to take his fortune... Written by Chris Makrozahopoulos <makzax@hotmail.com>

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It's the new life-style. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
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18 November 1969 (USA)  »

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The Arrangement  »

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(Technicolor)

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2.35 : 1
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Trivia

Kazan was dissatisfied with Kirk Douglas' performance as Eddie Anderson, according to his autobiography, and wished Brando had taken the role, as Brando would have been able to suggest depths of feeling that Douglas could not. See more »

Quotes

Gwen: OK, yes, I know, I'm nothing, I never was, but you! You could have been...
Eddie Anderson: What? What?!
Gwen: ...What you could have been. ...What happened to you, Eddie? Must kill you to think what you might have been.
See more »

Connections

Features America, America (1963) See more »

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User Reviews

 
THE ARRANGEMENT (Elia Kazan, 1969) ***
1 April 2006 | by (Naxxar, Malta) – See all my reviews

Adapted by Kazan from his own novel, this ambitious if little-seen (at least in my neck of the woods) character drama emerges as an absorbing and highly personal adult piece, but one which is also pretty heavy-going and somewhat uneven in quality. Still, the director elicits excellent performances from his entire cast (with the star trio baring more than their souls in front of the cameras); Kirk Douglas is particularly impressive in one of his most interesting roles (certainly at this stage of his career, here playing the son of Richard Boone who, in real-life, is actually a year younger than Douglas!)...though Kazan, in his autobiography, seemed unhappy with having to make do with him over his first choice, Marlon Brando. It's strange that he hadn't thought of Douglas immediately to personify his alter ego on screen, since both had been immigrants and the actor would therefore have an instant connection with the character; actually, I feel that Brando's brooding intensity - as opposed to Douglas' dynamic hysterics - would have worn the film down even more than it already is...and, in any case, Marlon got to do his "mid-life crisis act" three years later in LAST TANGO IN Paris (1972)!

What is essentially an old-fashioned melodrama, particularly given the lack of young actors involved, it's brought up-to-date - and, one might say, to life - by a variety of cinematic tricks (which sometimes exasperate the spectator, as if Kazan had gone through one too many viewings of Richard Lester's strikingly similar PETULIA [1968]!): multiple flashbacks and fantasy sequences (Douglas has visions of mistress Faye Dunaway everywhere, and even has her morphing into wife Deborah Kerr during a love scene); we also get visualizations of his interior monologues in which the younger, successful Douglas straightens out his older, bitter self; and, at one point, there's even a fist-fight underscored by cartoon captions a' la the campy 1960s "Batman" TV series!! On the other hand, the film's production values - as is to be expected from a glossy studio product of its time - are tops.

Leonard Maltin strangely rates this one a BOMB in his "Movie Guide"; true, it may not be top-tier Kazan but it's nowhere near as bad as he seems to think it is. Curiously enough, I followed this viewing with the director's subsequent film, THE VISITORS (1972), also awarded the unenviable "bottom-of-the-barrel" accolade from the genial critic...though, in its case, it's a bit more understandable - as can be perceived from my own comments below!


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