Chinatown (1974)

After I finished the movie, I sat thinking about what I could say about it; the ending had left me speechless. Eventually I started thinking about how similar it was to The Conversation (1974). While there are many similarities, both are mystery movies released in 1974 where the protagonists are involved with the mystery through their own occupation. Among their differences is how each movie ends.

The protagonist J.J. Gittes (right, Jack Nicholson)

Overall, it was a great movie.

Remark: This movie was released a year before One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975), another film starring Jack Nicholson, was released.

[20130120 Assumed Post Date][20181213 Edit]

Instant Comments:
Wow, I haven't watched a movie starring Jack Nicholson in a while. He has a distinct voice.
The joke.
Clever insults at around the 24 min mark.
33 min things turn to really make things hairy. or i mean... i guess it wasn't clear what type of movie i was watching. but then it turns into more of a mystery or thriller at the point.

"The water comes."

Huh. "The water comes." The dialogue exchange is interesting. "Every night a different part."
Oh wow. The knife at the nostril at the 44 min mark. I like how the blood splatters vertically along his face. It's great.
"How do you like dem apples?"
Hahaha. Great way to be annoying.
"Only when I breathe." I think some of these conversations go too quickly for me to understand, but I love the way he says it. I'll have to watch this movie a second time some day.
We get a better idea of where the title of the movie comes from at the 1 hr 2 min mark.
The ruler scene is cool. Of course I feel he was just being lazy. Otherwise he could have sat and copied all that information.
Driving through the orange grove. I found it funny.

"I goddamn near lost my nose. And I like it. I like breathing through it."

Gittes (the protagonist) has grit.
Huh. At the 1 hr 14 min mark we are given a piece of the mystery.
The music after he beats the guy up is great. The piano comes in briefly and I start to feel the intensity of the moment, only to be followed by some horns which I find calm and soothing.
Oh nice. The breaking of the car's rear light.
Oh shit. Big plot revelation at the 1 hr 50 min mark.
No way... that's how the movie ends!?!

Watched 20130120 (Netflix, Instant)
Chinatown (1974) Roman Polanski. 130 min

Relevant Links:
Chinatown (
Chinatown (1974 film) (

Gittes tells a joke.

Joke from Chinatown:
So there's this guy Walsh, do you understand? He's tired of screwin' his wife.

So his friend says to him, "Hey, why don't you do it like the Chinese do?"

So he says, "How do the Chinese do it?"

And the guy says, "Well, the Chinese, first they screw a little bit, then they stop, then they go and read a little Confucius, come back, screw a little bit more, then they stop again, go and they screw a little bit, then they go back and they screw a little bit more and then they go out and they contemplate the moon or something like that. Makes it more exciting."

So now, the guy goes home and he starts screwin' his own wife, see. So he screws her for a little bit and then he stops, and he goes out of the room and reads Life Magazine. Then he goes back in, he starts screwin' again. He says, "Excuse me for a minute, honey." He goes out and he smokes a cigarette. Now his wife is gettin' sore as hell. He comes back in the room, he starts screwin' again. He gets up to start to leave again to go look at the moon.

She looks at him and says, "Hey, whats the matter with ya. You're screwin' just like a Chinaman!"

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