Five Easy Pieces (1970) Short Review

This is best if you know nothing about the film before seeing it. They always are. Nicholson displays a restlessness in the film and a need to avoid being defined by people. He rejects regulation for reasons that are never completely pinned down which seems a bit like real life.

I guess you can read the movie in a variety of ways. You can see Nicholson’s character as a rebel fighting against preconceived expectations of the establishment and family or you can see him as irresponsible, choosing to run away from his life if it begins to become too familiar. The ending wasn’t really a surprise. He actually makes his somewhat confused intentions known earlier in the film.

It is a great performance by Nicholson. Of course. the scene that everyone brings up about this film is the chicken salad sandwich diner scene, but there’s a lot more to the movie than that. He did some of his best work in the 1970s. I really enjoyed the film, especially for its own refusal to paint by the numbers. I’ll probably watch this one again in the near future.

4.5 of 5


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