best film: A Woman Under the Influence is Cassavetes best work and Rowlands clear #1 best film here. Faces comes in second and was the beginning of Cassavetes one-man (for a time) American Independent art film movement (of course Shadows from Cassavetes comes first in 1959). Rowlands worked with Jarmusch, Woody and even Terrence Davies but it wasn’t in their better work. A Woman Under the Influence is a difficult film- but a masterpiece worthy of the journey.
best performance: A Woman Under the Influence is far and away her best performance. She has enough of a resume here with her other 5 films with Cassavetes not make her a one-hit wonder (and even give her slightly more of a balance than say Emily Watson) but still. She’s not on this list without her work as Mabel Longhetti as Peter Falk’s alcoholic wife. It’s a tour-de-force if there’s ever been a performance worthy of that description. One of the best female performances of all-time.
stylistic innovations/traits: She could truly do it all as her work in A Woman Under the Influence isn’t that closely connected to her work in Gloria or Another Woman in terms of character traits and tics. Mabel Longhetti is a whirlwind—mad, real, perplexing, complicated.
directors worked with: Cassavetes (6) – Her husband- she was his muse and he her director. There are not many better auteur/muse or director/actor collaborations and pairings in cinema. She also worked with Woody Allen once and Jim Jarmusch.
Top 5 Performances:
- A Woman Under the Influence
- Opening Night
- Minnie and Moskowitz
|1962- Lonely Are the Brave|
|1971- Minnie and Moskowitz|
|1974- A Woman Under the Influence|
|1977- Opening Night|
|1984- Love Streams|
|1988- Another Woman|
|1991- Night On Earth|