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dombrewer's avatar


A sorely neglected 70s thriller from Alan J. Pakula; some great atmospheric lighting and cinematography combined with some terrific naturalistic acting from Fonda and Sutherland really make this film. Some genuinely creepy moments are helped by the strange discordant score of piano and voices. Memorable.
7 years 5 months ago
aussieflickfan's avatar


A 70's film in more ways than one. An urban film showing the effects of living in a place that takes something away from people's souls - except one.
The director doesn't judge people - they are merely shown to the viewer. This is in the 'don't make them like this any more' category.
9 years 1 month ago
nicolaskrizan's avatar


weak story, great characters and mood

6 years 10 months ago
Pike's avatar


I'm totally fucking floored by Jane Fonda in this.
1 year 8 months ago
jacktrewin's avatar


great work from Gordon Willis and the two leads. very atmospheric.
5 years 11 months ago
GrooveRemote's avatar


Klute is quite the movie.

As a drama chronicling the peculiar relationship between Bree (Fonda) and John Klute (Sutherland), it does its job and so much more. The duo of characters complement one another perfectly, and the actors filling the roles do great work, though Bree and Fonda are easily the standouts, with significantly more screen time and development. The screenplay must be lauded, if only for its totally original lead character, and the way in which it delves into her mind, particularly through eye-opening sessions with a psychiatrist. It's the thing everyone says about the movie, but it abandons that cheesy "hooker with a heart of gold" trope that was primed to be abolished as part of the coming of the American new wave. Bree's natural human desires for companionship and for comfort wage war, and something I appreciated quite a bit was that neither wins out. She doesn't just resolve her inner turmoil like that, but she doesn't stop trying.

Sadly, as a "thriller," it's a total dumpster fire. It's not an issue of genre mislabeling, because Pakula tries to thrill, and the chilling score does him no small favour, but every supposedly suspenseful or exciting scene drags at a level previously thought beyond the limits of mankind. There's nothing thrilling about the film. I tried to invest myself in the plot, but it was like being caught up in a tornado of exposition and meticulous story beats. Generally, I really do not like a meticulous plot. Chinatown's plot has plenty details you pick up on later, but the thrust is emotional; it's personal. I'm sure plenty people out there loved the editing, and while, sure, there's an emphasis on long takes, every time the film whips out an action-packed scene the editor must've had a seizure. It's an attempt at the kind of editing later perfected in The Shining. Compare the axe to the chest scene in that to the big finale in this. Both quick scenes, both nightmares, but in different ways.

As one last note, I want to praise Gordon Willis. It's Willis pulling off that moody, harsh lighting yet again. Strong contrast is his forte, and it's in an abundance in Klute. There are some shots that are darker than even I like, where little on the screen can even be made out.

So, yeah, it's great in some respects, but not enough to warrant two hours. This film is in desperate need of some heavy trimming. The wonderful Klute that could be is buried in 15 minutes of the sometimes dreadfully boring Klute that is. Still, it's got enough good not to write it off.
11 months 1 week ago
ahithophel ebejer's avatar

ahithophel ebejer

1 year 3 months ago
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