Six months after the disappearance of Tuscarora, PA businessman Tom Gruneman, his boss, Peter Cable, and his wife, Holly Gruneman, hire Tom's friend, private detective John Klute to find out what happened to Tom, as the police have been unable to do so, and despite John having no expertise in missing persons cases. The only lead is a typewritten obscene letter Tom purportedly wrote to Manhattan actress/model/call girl Bree Daniel, who admits to having received such letters from someone, and since having received several mysterious telephone calls as well. The suggestion/belief is that Tom was one of Bree's past johns, although she has no recollection of him when shown his photograph. Bree's tricking is both a compulsion and a financial need. In their initial encounters, John and Bree do whatever they can to exert their psychological dominance over the other, especially as Bree initially refused to even speak to him. Despite their less than friendly start, they embark on a personal ...Written by
According to her autobiography, Jane Fonda hung out with call girls and pimps for a week before beginning this film in order to prepare for her role. When none of the pimps offered to "represent" her, she became convinced she wasn't desirable enough to play a prostitute and urged the director to replace her with friend Faye Dunaway. See more »
Bree's surname is inconsistent (Daniel or Daniels) throughout the entire movie. The end credits read Daniel. See more »
[at a payphone]
Hey Trina, Bree. Listen, I could use a quick fifty. You got a commuter for me?
See more »
Some network TV versions omit six minutes' worth of footage, including a scene where Klute (Donald Sutherland) finds the clue that leads him to the murderer. See more »
Donald Sutherland plays John Klute, a small town private investigator, whose search for a missing man leads him to a high-priced New York City call-girl named Bree Daniels, played by Jane Fonda. Bree keeps thinking she hears noises and has the feeling someone is following her. This story element combined with spooky music conveys an air of mystery, a sense that an unseen character lurks in the background.
It's an interesting premise. But the story is thin, and the film's payoff at the end is disappointing. The weak story transfers responsibility of entertainment to the two lead characters: Klute and Bree. And with Sutherland's character so reticent and stoic, "Klute" turns out to be mostly a character study of the call-girl, and therefore a cinematic vehicle for Fonda.
Although I'm not convinced she deserved an academy award for her performance, she does do a fine job. But there just isn't that much else to this film. It is very, very slow. Scenes are long and drawn out. Stylistically, "Klute" reminds me of "The Conversation" (1974). The film also is vaguely similar in style to some of Dario Argento's "giallos", minus the horror element, and minus Argento's fantastic cinematography.
Most viewers like this film because of Fonda's performance. And that's certainly a valid criterion. Far fewer people recommend the film for its story or plot. If you are a Jane Fonda fan, "Klute" will be a real treat. If you are looking for a chilling mystery with lots of plot twists, you might want to look elsewhere.
7 of 10 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this