• Strong writing (from a John Cheever short story—the “Chekov of the suburbs”) and a big-time lead performance from Burt Lancaster help a hit and miss Frank Perry behind the camera
  • A meditation on mid-life crisis and WASP-y capitalist suburban banality—seems connected to The Graduate from the year before (he could be Benjamin Braddock’s parents’ friend)—how about Fight Club too from 1999?
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  • Ebert and Lancaster call it Lancaster’s best- I respectfully disagree (Sweet Smell of Success or The Leopard)— but he’s very strong here– he definitely has a long swimmer’s build and is in crazy shape for the age of 55
  • Perry is no master of mise-en-scene but I like the Douglas Sirk autumnal suburbia here—colors and landscaping
  • Some odd transitions (like going to a dream with a twinkle in a soap opera at one point)—I do like the soft focus shots with dialogue carrying over with the young blonde
  • Goes slow-motion for no reason once later
  • Set almost as if in real time— a nervous breakdown or awakening depending on the perspective
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  • A great shot of Lancaster in the distance surrounded by trees- great photography
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  • Smart to use Lancaster- lots of close-ups
  • Truly sad when we get to the finale with the run-down mansion and tennis-court
  • Recommend