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****SOME SPOILERS*****Sharp and feisty movie about ex-1960's radical who's having a hard time making child support payments for his two kids. while trying to support himself as a small time private investigator in LA.
Moses Wine, Richard Dreyfuss, at home one night watching a football game that he bet on is contacted by an old flame back from his radical days in collage Lila, Susan Anspach. Lila wants Moses to work for a candidate for governor of California, Milles Hawthorne. Moses goes along with Lila to the Hawthorne campaign headquarters even though Moses is apposed to his policies as well as having a low opinion of Hawthorne's intellect. "This is a guy who thinks that Captain Kangaroo is too controversial" Moses tells Lila about the person she want's to get elected.
Told by Hawthorne's campaign manager Sam Sebastian, John Lithgow, that there's a flayer being distributed around the state with a doctored photo of Hawthorne and radical Howard Eppis, who's on the lamb from the police since he was convicted for inciting violence against the government. The phony flayer is telling everyone that Eppis is supporting Hawthorne for governor, which is not true, which will destroy Howthorne's chances for being elected and Sabastian want's Moses, a private eye, to find out who's disturbing it.
Moses and Lila go underground in the radical movement to find out who's behind these flayers and this whole Eppis mania. One night Moses goes over to Lila's home for a quite and uneventful dinner dinner and finds her murdered. Moses after overcoming the shock and grief of Lila's tragic death now has a more personal interest in the Hawthorne/Eppis case since he feels that Lila's murder was because of it.
Going on his own Moses starts to make inroads in his search for the elusive Howard Eppis and runs into people who in the past were supporters of Eppis who would now want to break Howard Eppis's neck. A group of radical Mexicans farm workers who's leader Louis Vasqaz, who had mysteriously vanished, felt that Eppis is a phony and an opportunist There's also the very wealthy industrialist Oscar Procari Sr. Fritz Weaver who holds Eppis responsible for his son's conviction for attempting to overthrow the government and flight from the law. This is due his involvement with Eppis in what was called the trial of the California Four.
Later Moses is picked up by the FBI and grilled by them about what he knows about Howard Eppis. It seems that everyone in the state of California wants to know where is Howard Eppis? It comes out later that someone that Moses came in contact with in the movie came up with an hair-brain scheme to blow up a section of the California freeway and blame in on Howard Eppis. This insane plan at the same time will destroy the Hawthorne campaign for governor by making it look like that Eppis was supporting him but who is it? and why was Lila murdered? did she stumble across something that if made public would blow the whole hair-brain scheme?
Richard Dreyfuss was never better then he was in "The Big Fix" With a wonderful supporting cast that carried the story from it's delightful and funny beginning to it's tense and griping final conclusion. And speaking of casts it was hilarious how Moses who was wearing a cast on his right hand, during the entire movie, came up with different reasons when anyone asked him how he broke his hand according to what their political or moral positions were.
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