Two bawdy, tough looking navy lifers – “Bad-Ass” Buddusky, and “Mule” Mulhall – are commissioned to escort a young pilferer named Meadows to the brig in Boston. Meadows is not much of a thief. Indeed, in his late teens, he is not much of a man at all. His great crime was to try to steal forty dollars from the general’s wife’s pet charity. For this, he’s been sentenced to eight years behind bars. At first, Buddusky and Mulhall view the journey as a paid vacation, but their holiday spirits are quickly depressed by the prisoner, who looks prepared to break into tears at any moment. And he has the lowest self-image imaginable. Buddusky gets it into his head to give Meadows a good time and teach him a bit about getting on in the world. Lesson one: Don’t take every card life deals you. Next, he teaches Meadows to drink, and, as a coup de grace, finds a nice young whore to instruct him in lovemaking. Mule, who worries aloud about his own position with military authority, seems pleased with Meadows’s progress. However, when the trio reach Boston, the game comes abruptly to an end as reality sets in. —IMDb
Hal Ashby was born the fourth and youngest child in a Mormon household in Ogden, Utah, on September 2, 1929. His father was a dairy farmer. After a rough childhood that included the divorce of his parents, his father’s suicide, his dropping out of high school, getting married and divorced all before he was 19, he decided to leave Utah for California. A Californian employment office found him a printing press job at Universal Studios. Within a few years, he was an assistant film editor at various other studios. One of his pals while at MGM was a young messenger named Jack Nicholson. He moved up to being a full fledged editor on The Loved One (1965) and started editing the films of director Norman Jewison.
A highlight of his film editing career was winning an Oscar for the landmark In the Heat of the Night (1967). Itching to become a director, Jewison gave him a script he was too busy to work on called The Landlord (1970). It became Ashby’s first film as a director. From there… read more
Why did it take me so long to see this film? Its wonderful Nicholson has never been better.
Clips and appreciations marking Jack Nicholson’s 75th birthday.
Hal Ashby had won an Oscar for editing with Norman Jewison’s ‘In The Heat Of The Night’ in 1967, and encouraged by Jewison he made a move into directing a couple of years later. His first critical… read review