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Two convicts break out of Mississippi State Penitentiary in 1936 to join a third on a long spree of bank robbing, their special talent and claim to fame. The youngest of the three falls in ... See full summary »
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Set in winter in the Old West. Charismatic but dumb John McCabe arrives in a young Pacific Northwest town to set up a whorehouse/tavern. The shrewd Mrs. Miller, a professional madam, arrives soon after construction begins. She offers to use her experience to help McCabe run his business, while sharing in the profits. The whorehouse thrives and McCabe and Mrs. Miller draw closer, despite their conflicting intelligences and philosophies. Soon, however, the mining deposits in the town attract the attention of a major corporation, which wants to buy out McCabe along with the rest. He refuses, and his decision has major repercussions for him, Mrs. Miller, and the town. Written by
John J. Magee <firstname.lastname@example.org>
In the saloon, McCabe plays cards and Sheeran lights the lamp while they talk to each other about the bottle of whiskey price. At one point McCabe is shown, from behind, taking the cigar out of his mouth with his left hand and, subsequently, shown from the front, holding the cigar in his mouth with his right hand. See more »
[muttering to himself]
I told you... Think I'm stupid?... S'exactly what I said. Six, six of 'em...
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Perhaps I just don't get Altman. Cards on the table, I preferred the TV "M.A.S.H." to the movie version and didn't laugh once during the original movie. This off-beat western with A-list casting sort of missed me too. Multi-layered, my TV guide said, well I couldn't get through the top crust. Yes it was well shot, in mostly natural light and Altman creates a beautiful snowy tableau for McCabe's demise but where was the story? Perhaps I wasn't comfortable with the depiction of women in the film, Julie Christie apart, as good-for-one-thing whores. There was little humour to leaven the seedy subject matter and just so little narrative drive about the piece. If it was about the supposed love affair between Warren Beatty's McCabe and Christie's Mrs Miller, I didn't get that either. Was it maybe about little-town ideals being corrupted by big business? I don't know, I found watching it that whole minutes had gone by without anything notable happening and having to concentrate to stay interested. I also found the movie very poorly dubbed - I'm British and I still found much of what Christie said to be unintelligible with the rest of the mostly male cast slurring or mumbling their words too. There was a lot of indiscriminate killing for little reason that I could see and little drama or excitement to savour. Perhaps I should watch it again and try harder to absorb its "layers" but to be truthful, I doubt I'd get much past 20 minutes.
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