The Facets Cinémathèque is located at 1517 W. Fullerton Ave. in Chicago. For more information on films playing in the Cinémathèque, please call 773-281-4114. To order advance tickets online, visit the TicketWeb website by clicking here.
40th ANNIVERSARY PRESENTATION OF AN AMERICAN CLASSIC!
35MM RESTORED PRINT!
Chicago Theatrical Revival
Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Supporting Actress, Best Original Screenplay Academy Awards
Best Film Best Director Best Supporting Actress NY Film Critics Circle Awards
FIVE EASY PIECES
"A masterpiece of heartbreaking intensity" -Roger Ebert
"Undeniably one of the finest (and most influential) films made in Hollywood during the glorious 70s, Bob Rafelson's modern classic...also boasts what is probably Jack Nicholson's greatest performance" -British Film Institute
"Nicholson's performance is a remarkably varied and daring exploration of a complex character, equally convincing in its manic and sober aspects" -Variety
"A magnificently insightful and engaging [film], flipping effortlessly from icy realism to heated melodrama while always maintaining a darkly comic, at times quietly satirical undercurrent" -TimeOut London
"This superbly composed film comes as close to perfection as it gets" -Guardian UK
"Five Easy Pieces is totally human, trading Easy Rider's counterculture mytho-poetics for a study in the charisma of disdain (which Nicholson personifies) and how rebellion and loutishness are often indistinguishable" -Village Voice
"One reason "Five Easy Pieces" remains so powerful is because it's a film that, with every frame, looks deeply, trying to find the human [behind the facade]" -Los Angeles Times
"A brilliant gem of American psychological realism" -TimeOut Chicago
Undeniably one of the finest and most influential films made in Hollywood during the glorious 70s, Bob Rafelson's modern classic – lovingly restored for its 40th anniversary – also boasts what is probably Jack Nicholson's greatest performance. Five Easy Pieces, made in 1970, is thoughtful, complex and Jack Nicholson is brilliant as the misfit Bobby Dupea. This was Nicholson before his star persona was fully set and alongside his trademark brashness, there is a vulnerability and uncertainty here that you do not find in his later performances. In the early scenes, he is a blue-collar roustabout working on an oil rig, picking up women at the bowling alley and treating his waitress girlfriend (Karen Black) with contempt. Only when we see him playing an upright piano on the back of a truck, during an early morning traffic jam, do we realise that he is not the working-class everyman he seems to be.
The screenplay, by Carole Eastman and Bob Rafelson, deals in subtle and insightful fashion with class, family ties and the burden of adult responsibility. Long-time Nicholson pal Carole Eastman credited as Adrien Joyce expanded on three sketches by director Rafelson (Head, The King of Marvin Gardens and creator of The Monkees!), ultimately basing the character of Dupea on both Nicholson and her brother, with scenes inspired by actual events.
Directed by Bob Rafelson, U.S.A. 1970, 35mm, 98 mins.