Five Easy Pieces (1970)


"I'm tootin' my horn right now, can't you SMELL IT!"
"I'm tootin' my horn right now, can't you SMELL IT!"

Genre: Drama Music

Starring: Jack Nicholson (Batman; The Shining), Karen Black (House of 1000 Corpses; Family Plot)

Directed By: Bob Rafelson (The Postman Always Rings Twice; The King of Marvin Gardens)

Overview: A mistreatin' drifter finds out his father's had a stroke, and returns to the high society household he ran from years ago.


Jack Nicholson, can't go wrong. Maybe it's the era, but there was a feel in the film that I couldn't grasp, and I'll blame the director and the characters in the story itself. They did well. I know Nicholson is the big star here and he excels, but it wasn't anything special.
Rating: 7


The dirty oil worker, the hoity high society house, the truck stops and trailers, good settings, but nothing spectacular. In fact, I would even go so far as to say uninspired.
Rating: 6


"You want a chicken sandwich, and you want me to hold the chicken?" "Yeah, I want you to hold it between your legs."

This is THE classic line from this film. Sure, the delivery of the tale was decent, and the twit that is our drifter's girlfriend was really well written, but I don't think it's masterpiece material.
Rating: 7


This is considered a touch of an American Classic. The reason why, I don't know. There is so little focus in this film, it's almost like there's no beginning or end, and there's all these unresolved little things left over. I want to give the story a good score, but I didn't find it all that interesting, deep or 'classic' at all. Too bad for you.
Rating: 5


The mood was slice of life. I was never fully into the story, it did nothing to pull me in. There were no grand dinner scenes or messy hotel rooms with beer bottles everywhere. No scene exuded emotion, they left everything up to the characters. Think a little more on it next time. Early 70s, that's it.
Rating: 5

"On second thought could you put some sauerkraut up there too?"
"On second thought could you put some sauerkraut up there too?"

Overall Rating: 60% (A Little TOO Easy, If You Ask Me)

Did nothing for me. I didn't like his girlfriend, I didn't like Sally Struthers, I didn't like the other high-class girl he was involved with either. I only liked his character... oh and the hitch-hikers. I would never recommend this to anyone. Frankly I found it boring. Not my demographic I guess.

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A begining, middle and end (and probably in that order).  Unresolved conflicts, lack of focus, depth, no emotion?  Maybe if the film had canned laughter, cues as to when to look for a character's emotional conflicts (for those who are perception handicapped), then maybe they would understand.  Then again maybe not.  To quote Quentin Tarantino discussing audience members laughing at a film in the wrong places and/or not understanding what they are seeing on the screen..."Some people just don't f*cking get it!"

Riffraf, I entirely disagree that it's the audience's responsibility to GET a film. It's the director's FAULT if he can't convey his message. If only some understand, then the director should know that will happen. David Lynch, Brothers Quay, they know that people won't get them. If i may retort with another Quentin Tarantino quote:

"I don't believe in elitism. I don't think the audience is this dumb person lower than me. I am the audience."

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