Robert Altman

Robert Altman

 

Altman observes through the migration to the Mecca of country music (Nashville) all the glory-hungry human beings that despite their embarrassing individualism manage to form a common destiny. Baroque mixture of lost illusions and eternal faith in the future, this is the Altman's America. Through the description of 24 people's habits he paints a vast fresco of American costumes and draws up a critical inventory of the plot between the entertainment world and politics.

 
 

Altman's taste for choral narrative forms and the singular fragmentation of narrative in his films are well known. The director's frontal screenplay immerses us in the compromises of country music that offer an ironic vision of a world in which ambitious shamelessly men crush the weakest. The entertainment industry is viewed through the distorted prism of a presidential campaign. Have Hamilton, redneck to the limits of caricature, a conservative who does not make politics because he "supports all parties"; Sueleen Gay, a bomb redhead with no talent; Barbara Jean, a living symbol of malaise and neurosis. Opal, a British character dipped in clich├ęs in search of unlikely stories that reinforce their prejudices.

 
 

Each character is a pretext for a clear portrait without complacency and cynicism that could have made his film a satire devoid of humanity. But probably the key figure is Albuquerque, which provides, in five minutes, the emotions held by the icy director for almost three hours of film. The Nashville final remains one of the conceptually highest moments in Altman's life: from the blonde who in his impromptu performance seems to take on the trauma of an entire people, from that indistinct crowd that sings "It don't worry me" moments of lucid sociology and bitter poetry. 

 
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Nashiville
director ROBERT ALTMAN
year 1975
director of photography PAUL LOHMANN 
cast RONEE BLAKLEY, GERALDINE CHAPLIN, LILY TOMLIN, HENRY GIBSON, KEITH CARRADINE

 
 

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