- Acting of Lead Performers
- Acting of Supporting Cast
- Music Score
- Title Sequence
- Historical Importance
- Would You Recommend?
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Five Easy Pieces
- Susanne Cavendish
I find it difficult to understand viewers who say this movie does not hold up, because, the question becomes 'holding up to what?' It is the ideal movie for understanding baby-boomers, that generation of misfits who were raised on Dr Spock, an avowed communist and by mothers who cared more about status than and glitz than they did about being mothers. That made the 1960's the decade most people would like to forget. One reviewer made a comment about the writer not mentioning what happened to Bobby's mother. The writer's didn't have to comment, for his mother was present in every scene Bobby was in, her shadow hanging over him like Damocles' Sword. This movie is the perfect vehicle for understanding grandparents and parents who were born to the generation's excesses and have little to show for it in legacy, intellectual worth and promise. If you want to know how we got to where we are today, this is a road map to the twenty-first century. There were some things about this movie that served to remind us of the good from the time, like Bobby's sister, although that seems to be about it. It was a dismal movie, but so were those times, marked by having so much available to that generation, which they frittered away in the name of protesting a war which led factory workers into colleges with poor preparation for educating themselves, in the name of maternal pressure placed on them by mothers who could not accept the fact that they had failed their sons. Surprisingly daughters from that generation did marvelously well, their mothers too consumed with sons to screw them up. I love this movie and watching it should hurt one's sense of being, with an eye toward understanding, that there are few accidents in civilizational history, from any period of time.
Five Easy Pieces
- Michael Whitty
A low budget story of a man looking to find himself while working in a southern California oil field and later taking a trip with others up the west coast and into Washington to see relatives. Jack Nicholson did this after "Easy Rider" and scored an Oscar nomination with a memorable restaurant scene where he has a problem with a waitress and later angrily clears the table. His character can play the piano as he is in a family of musicians but "Five Easy Pieces" didn't have a satisfying ending to help its case. This was before Jack got his bigger roles in the 70s when he had to take what was given and try to do something with. But he did do something with this role and "Five Easy Pieces" was an art film that kicked Jack's career into orbit.
Five Easy Pieces: A Relic Of A By-Gone Age
- Doc Long
Grade Z entertainment for the 21st century audience. Stunningly depressing nearly half a century since its release, "Easy Pieces" was to be a breakout vehicle for Jack Nicholson after his role in "Easy Rider". However, it would be 1974 before Nicholson set the screen on fire with his landmark performance in "Chinatown". Five Easy Pieces is best remembered as being relevant in its time but- just doesn't translate to this changed world. At least we can all still enjoy the "hold it" diner scene.
Jack plays a bum "who has no love for himself"
- Jeff Boston
Excellent review, Mr. Sellers. People change as they age, for with age comes wisdom. Nicholson played a first class jerk, an "anti-hero" and actual hero to many viewers of this film for far too long, partly because one of his lines in the diner - "I know what it comes with, but it's not what I want" - characterized too many members of the most spoiled generation in American history, the Baby Boomers. Instead of being the best he could be, the lead character's disillusionment (aka short-sighted stupidity) pushed him to be the worst he could be. The hippie car passenger with the black hair was a hoot, but Nicholson's character I really wanted to give the boot (in the general area of the body where he told the similarly world weary waitress to stick a particular type of food). The bum had no qualms about hurting others. Of course he continuously hurt himself the most.
5 easy pieces
- kevin sellers
Saw it for the first time in forty four years the other night and it doesn't quite hold up. Biggest difference is my view of Jack Nicholson's character, Bobby Dupee. What was the epitome, to a 21 year old viewer, of witty, alienated, 60s cool is, now that I'm 65, a study in egotism, selfishness and cruelty. I find I really don't like anything about this guy. I mean, he's intelligent, but so what, since his intelligence is used as a way for him to feel superior to everyone else, his sister possibly excepted? I certainly do not wish to spend two hours in his company and do not give a rat's ass what happens to him up in Alaska or whatever lonely place to which he's headed. Having said this, let me hasten to add that Nicholson the actor is at the top of his game, and certain scenes, like his speech to his catatonic father, are even more powerful than I had remembered. I guess if I had to grade it for the first time I'd give it a B. The vaunted screenplay by Carol Eastman has some gaps in it. You never know about Bob's mother and, more importantly, what caused his alienation from his classical music family. And the celebrated scene where Nicholson insults the roadside waitress should go in the Gratuitous Hall of Fame, since this is not a movie about the discomforts of mass American culture.
Five Easy Pieces
- Dashiell B.
Alienation is the theme of Rafelson's iconic & moving character study. A piano prodigy returns home to visit his sick father after years working on an oil rig. Nicholson, in his first starring part, earned an Oscar nomination in a role that fits his persona; Black won a Golden Globe for her outstanding performance as Nicholson's girlfriend. Moving in simplicity, this is a gritty & meticulous picture that began an innovative time in 70's filmmaking. If for no other reason you like this movie, "Five Easy Pieces" is worth seeing for the scene in which Nicholson tries to order toast. I give it a 5/5.
One of the 70's most memorable movies
- Brian H.
This was one of the best movies of the 1970s. One of the few to show a man's total dissatisfaction with his life and his family. Jack Nicholson is brilliant, beginning a string of memorable roles, earning his first Best Actor Academy Award nomination with moving work. One of the all-time great scenes is the diner encounter with a waitress who gives him a hard time. Slow moving but very rewarding movie.
Five Easy Pieces
- Bruce Reber
I have seen "Five Easy Pieces" about 5 times but have managed to watch it all the way through only once. Jack Nicholson gives a pretty good performance as a virtuoso pianist trying to figure out what he wants from life while squandering his talent and wandering around aimlessly. He returns to his family, but only finds more trouble and disillusionment. My favorite part has to be the "no substitutions" scene in the restaurant when Nicholson orders a chicken salad sandwich on wheat bread then tells her to hold the chicken between her legs when she refuses to take his order.