Saturday, March 5, 2016

Play Misty for Me (1971)

Director: Clint Eastwood

Writers: Jo Heims, Dean Riesner

Composer: Dee Barton

Starring: Clint Eastwood, Jessica Walter, Donna Mills, John Larch, Jack Ging, Irene Hervey, James McEachin, Clarice Taylor, Don Siegel

More info: IMDb

Tagline: The scream you hear may be your own!

Plot: A brief fling between a male disc jockey and an obsessed female fan takes a frightening, and perhaps even deadly turn when another woman enters the picture.

My rating:  8/10

Will I watch it again?  Yes.

It's FATAL ATTRACTION (1987) years before FATAL ATTRACTION became a thing...and it's really good.  Clint Eastwood, in his directorial debut, knocks this thriller out of the park.  It doesn't take long before you can see Evelyn (played by a super young Jessica Walter) is going to be a batshit crazy bitch and the gradual progression is nicely played.  Eastwood is Eastwood and that's perfectly fine by me.  The only thing about him I'm not buyin' is that he's a radio DJ.  That and he's a small town DJ that lives in a nice house on the Pacific Coast Hwy overlooking the ocean.  Even then that place had to be worth at least a million bucks.  There's no way he'd be able to live there on his salary.  Suspension of disbelief aside, this is a well-paced, good and tight thriller.  I LOVE the way Clint disposes of his problem.  One thing that's bugged me from the first time I watched this thirty years ago is the diversion from the film when Clint goes to the jazz festival.  He's there for a while just hanging out.  I know he's a lifelong jazz fan but that whole sequence feels like filler and he's being self-indulgent.  It's not a deal killer, it's just not necessary.   The Universal DVD set, Clint Eastwood: American Icon Collection, is great.  This is one of four pictures in the set and the extras for this film include a 50 minute new documentary on the making of the picture (it's GREAT!), a 6 minute piece on Clint, Don Siegel and Misty, a photograph montage, more behind the scenes photos, the evolution of a movie poster and the theatrical trailer in fullscreen.  The film is presented in anamorphic widescreen.

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