THE HUSTLER (Robert Rossen, 1961)

Robert Rossen’s The Hustler is a film of cheap effects. For me, the low point of Rossen’s mise-en-scène arrives when the thugs take Eddie behind the frosty screen and break his thumbs. Oh, really? Why take him behind the screen? After all, the thugs don’t know that a camera is there watching them. The answer […]

MY NIGHT AT MAUD’S (Eric Rohmer, 1969)

Jean-Louis Trintignant is terrific as Jean-Louis, an unmarried engineer in his mid-30s, who knows his ideal woman when he sees her. Writer-director Eric Rohmer’s brilliant Ma nuit chez Maud opens with him in contemplation over a balcony on a Sunday morning; a sporadically devout Roman Catholic, should he attend Mass when what is really drawing […]