Five Easy Pieces

The Movie Snob reviews a classic.

Five Easy Pieces  (C).  I caught this 1970 release at the Magnolia this past Tuesday night, knowing really nothing about it except that it starred Jack Nicholson and featured a famous scene in which his character tries to order toast at a diner.  It’s okay, but I didn’t think it was so great.  Nicholson (The Shining) plays Bobby Dupea, a malcontent who works on oil rigs somewhere in California and is generally rude to his countrified waitress girlfriend Rayette (Karen Black, Nashville).  What’s eating him?  Well, you find out about halfway through the movie that he has fled a more genteel life, and he decides to go back to the family home in Washington state and see his father, who has had a debilitating stroke.  He doesn’t fit in there any better than he does among the commoners.  Movies about misfits aren’t really my thing, so I didn’t particularly warm up to this one.  Watch for small roles for Sally Struthers (TV’s All in the Family) and Toni Basil (singer of the pop gem “Mickey”).  It was nominated for four Oscars®, including best picture, best actor (Nicholson), and best supporting actress (Black), and it’s only 98 minutes long, so check it out and see if you agree with me.

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