A key film part of the American cinema renaissance of the seventies, it follows the three drifter teens and the aging lost souls who bump into them. A portrait of the dying West set during the early fifties, in a lonely part of Texas.
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Through the detailed, formal but never stodgy, and incredibly lived-in excellence of Bogdanovich’s direction (and production designer Polly Platt) we are immediately transported right into this world that, at the time, was 20 year ago, but we don’t feel simple nostalgia about it (though we wished these places still existed. I do anyway). As beautifully shot and as intriguing as this town is, it also appears hard and unforgiving.
To watch the The Last Picture Show is to step inside it. Once you’re over the threshold, its heavy truths continue to disconcert long after the credits. Best cancel your post-screening plans and build in some recovery time, especially if you’ve aged any since you last saw it. Few movies are more poisonously enveloping; the only antidote I know is to cue up Hank Williams and lie on the floor.
35mm, rewatched. "It's a summer day, / and I want to be wanted more than anything else in the world." (Frank O'Hara) The beauty of Timothy Bottoms, Jeff Bridges, Sam Bottoms and Cybill Shepherd; the poesis of Cloris Leachman, Ellen Burstyn and Eileen Brennan; the iconic dimension of lion Ben Johnson; Robert Surtees cinematography and Bogdanovich's lucid vision of an agonic classicism.
Why don´t you love me like you used to do?
A gritty plaintive and poignant paean to 50's Americana. A dry Texas dust bowl plays stage to inarticulate and doomed youthful ambitions and confused emotions, while the elders can only watch wryly as history repeats and unravels. A masterpiece that stays with you long after the picture flicker fades.
I am a huge fan of Bogdanovich's early films, especially this one. Not only is it a love song to the cinema of John Ford and Frank Capra but it is also one of the most natural feeling films, perfectly capturing the essence of small town life in Texas.
Coming to it without any knowledge about it I loved THE LAST PICTURE SHOW. Easily in my TOP50 of all times. Actually thought it was made earlier than '71, until the nudity made me check for the production year. Utterly impressive achievement artistically and technically.
An intelligent, warm and nicely paced coming of age tale set in a small Texas town in 1951, where only human relations and reactions relieve the monotony of the sparse landscape - similar to The Band's Vist in this regard, but more tragic. A monochrome masterpiece from Bogdanovich.
Bogdanovich brought the cinema of Truffaut and Fellini out in the Texan desert, making a film that is both one of the most tender and heartbreaking coming of age story in cinema history and a great homage to the Old Hollywood and the time that is passing.
I haven't seen this since it came out when I was 10 and saw it at the Mohawk Drive-In (the one in NY, not Mass.), but I still remember how great it was, I still remember almost the whole movie, and I do want to see it again someday. Too bad the Mohawk Drive-In got demolished, a relic of a bygone era, like the small town in Texas in The Last Picture Show; the Mohawk showed its last picture in 1986.