Altman’s masterpiece: 24 characters and storylines surround a Nashville political rally and music festival, with the actors developing much of their own dialogue in rehearsal and co-authoring songs with music director Richard Baskin. Standout performances include Lily Tomlin, luminous in her screen debut; Ronee Blakley as Barbara Jean, the first lady of country music and a crackup waiting to happen; and Henry Gibson as sanctimonious crooner Haven Hamilton. —AFI
An iconoclast whose work acutely attacked the conventions of genre filmmaking, Altman both satirized and revitalized such warhorses as the Western, the musical, and the crime drama, waging war on the sterile artifice of mainstream storytelling by creating a singularly sprawling and deliberately messy cinematic world bursting at the seams with sounds, images, characters, and plot lines. Famed for his inventive brand of overlapping (and often improvisational) dialogue and an acknowledged master of modern camera technique, Altman’s quixotic career has been uneven at best, yet he remains a pivotal figure of contemporary cinema, a true maverick responsible for many of the defining motion pictures of his times. Born February 20, 1925, in Kansas City, MO, Altman was educated in Jesuit schools prior to joining the Army at the age of 18; over the course of WWII, he flew over 50 bombing missions in Borneo and the Dutch East Indies. Upon his discharge in 1947, Altman studied engineering at the… read more
"Don't tell me how to run your life!" What a great film! Poignant when it needed to be, but more often hilarious, Altman takes a searing eye to all ends of Nashville, Tennessee. The desperate, untalented underbelly. The bloated, delirious products of success. The vaguely retarded politics. Still, the funniest parts to me were the lyrics of the songs, each one more ridiculous than the next. Loved it!
Essentially (and masterfully) shot as a documentary, 'Nashville' uses comedy to disguise the characters' profound sadness while painting an often times satirical but always poignant portrait of the "ideal" America. A heartbreaking film wrapped tidily with pageant-like bow-tie. Not my favorite Altman but an absolute masterclass in Directing and Producing.
The story behind the very different poster designs for Robert Altman’s The Long Goodbye.
Reading Robert Altman: The Oral Biography, David Thomson, writing in the New Republic, can see that Mitchell Zuckoff "grasps the way in which
Genre: Drama, Music
Director: Robert Altman
Writer: Joan Tewkesbury
Barbara Baxley… read review
Somewhere between This Is Spinal Tap and Crash is a little movie about the American people, American politics, and the American capital of country music. *Nashville… read review
Put quite simply, Robert Altman’s “Nashville” is one of the most exhilarating, overwhelming, and well-directed films I have ever experienced. I use the word “experienced” very deliberately, as this… read review