Susan: You’re very inflexible.
Eric: Who, me?
Susan: I don’t like you when you’re inflexible.
Eric: I don’t like it when you exaggerate to make sure I’ll listen to you.
Susan: Well, I can’t stand it when you don’t listen to me.
Eric: I don’t like it when you’re loud.
Susan: Well, I don’t like you when you’re not loud. I don’t know why I like you.
Eric: Because you can tell me why you don’t like me.
Susan: I like me when I don’t need you.
Eric: I don’t want you to need me. I want you to want me.
Susan: There’s no truth like bullshit.
Eric: Very good, Susan. 2 points.
Susan: Thank you.
I first saw this film last fall and I fell head over heels for it. It was directed, produced and co-written by Claudia Weill, who collaborated with friend Vicki Polon on the screenplay. Weill directed the film on weekends over a the course of a year. Somehow it got picked up by Warner Bros. and was given a limited run. Stanley Kurbick saw the film and said in a 1980 interview that it was one of the most interesting American films he had seen in recent years. Anyone who enjoyed last year’s Frances Ha, will love this film. They’re surprisingly similar and I wouldn’t be shocked if Baumbach and Gerwig drew some inspiration for their film from it. Read the rest of this entry
I think it’s important to first point out that this film is based on a true story. Journalist Charles Horman was one of the victims of the Chilean coup of 1973 led by General Augusto Pinochet, that deposed the socialist president, Salvador Allende. The coup was, in part, secretly backed by the United States government. The book on which this film was based came out in 1978 and this film was released in 1982, but the classified documents that prove that the events depicted in both are true were not released until 1999. I find this whole back story insanely interesting and if you’d like to read more about it, the Wikipedia article on Horman has a lot of information and links to further reading. The film was nominated for four Academy Awards, winning one: Best Adapted Screenplay (won), Best Actress Sissy Spacek, Best Actor Jack Lemmon and Best Picture. Strangely, Costa-Gavras was not nominated for Best Director (Wolfgang Petersen got nominated for Das Boot, while the film was not up for Best Picture). The other nominees for Best Picture that year were E.T.: The Extraterrestrial, Tootsie, The Verdict and winner Gandhi.