FIVE EASY PIECES (Bob Rafelson, 1970, Cert 15)

Sunday 10th June
Stow Film Lounge @Mirth, Marvel & Maud (former Granada cinema), 186 Hoe St, Walthamstow, London E17 4QH at 2.15pm 

Rejecting his cultured upper-class background as a classical pianist, Robert Dupea (Jack Nicholson, in his first major starring role) opts for a blue-collar existence, working in a California oil field and spending time with his waitress girlfriend, Rayette (Karen Black). However, when Robert discovers that his father is gravely ill, he wants to reunite with his estranged family in the state of Washington. He and Rayette take a road trip that brings the two paths of his life to an uncomfortable intersection.

A disaffected man seeks a sense of identity in one of the key films of Hollywood’s 1970s New Wave. Neither older generation nor hippie, Bobby fits in nowhere, and his desire for independence conflicts with his emotional emptiness. Nicholson’s nuanced performance of simmering frustration resonated with 1970 audiences caught between Nixon’s “silent majority” and the troubled counterculture; a substantial hit, Five Easy Pieces was nominated for several Oscars, including Best Picture and Best Actor, and established Nicholson as a star. Offering no “easy” answers to Bobby’s existential crisis, Five Easy Pieces is one of the pre-eminent films in the early-’70s cycle of alienated American art movies, as even the fantasy of rebellion is reduced to merely running away.

Doors: 2.15pm, Film 2.30pm, Close 4.30pm
Tickets: £7.50/£5.50 concession (senior citizens, unwaged, students). Available on the door or book in advance. 

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