Combustible Celluloid
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With: Elliot Gould, Nina Van Pallandt, Sterling Hayden, Mark Rydell, Henry Gibson, David Arkin, Jim Bouton, Warren Berlinger, Jo Ann Brody, Arnold Schwarzenegger
Written by: Leigh Brackett, based on the novel by Raymond Chandler
Directed by: Robert Altman
MPAA Rating: R
Running Time: 112
Date: 03/07/1973

The Long Goodbye (1973)

4 Stars (out of 4)

It's OK with Me

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

MGM's widescreen transfer of this great classic was one of the great pleasures of this DVD year. Director Robert Altman took on a Raymond Chandler novel and re-set it in the 1970s with a shabby Philip Marlowe (Elliot Gould) living in a world of hippies, stoners and freaks. He agrees to help out a friend accused of killing his wife and ends up meeting the drunken, Hemingway-esque writer Roger Wade (Sterling Hayden, in a great performance). Altman further turns the genre on its ear with his audacious ending. Uber-composer John Williams turned in one of his most unique scores here: a series of endless variations on the same tune (Muzak, blues, etc.). Future governer of California Arnold Schwarzenegger appears in an early, unbilled role as a thug.

The disc contains two short featurettes and a trailer.