Directed by Roman Polanski from a script by Robert Towne, Chinatown is yet another beloved film that I am ashamed to admit I had not seen until now. Luckily Roger Ebert’s The Great Movies gives me the perfect opportunity to correct these injustices. Chinatown’s reputation precedes it – the famous final line is forever etched in the cultural zeitgeist, and the controversial twist is still a disturbing shocker for those who have managed to remain unspoiled. But apart from being an excellent example of neo-noir, Chinatown is also a fascinating relic of two bygone eras.
My journey through The Great Movies – curated by the late Roger Ebert – brings me next to Bonnie and Clyde, the 1967 film directed by Arthur Penn and written by David Newman and Robert Benton. The film follows the infamous criminal couple from their first meeting in 1931, to the inevitable conclusion of their crime spree. At the time it was an exercise not only in pushing the boundaries of appropriate content in film, but also the boundaries of the form.