Film review: Chinatown, Roman Polanski's Californian noir
A season of Roman Polanski films at the BFI kicks off with his very greatest, a Californian noir about water and power with a strong undertow of Greek tragedy.
"Forget it, Jake – it's Chinatown", goes the famous last line, yet everything about Chinatown is memorable, starting with Robert Towne's Oscar-winning script, Jack Nicholson's most nuanced performance, Richard Sylbert's exquisite production design, John A Alonzo's burnished photography, Jerry Goldsmith's tense, mournful score.
It all clicks together with the precision of a Swiss watch. Polanski himself appears as a malevolent knifeman who cuts Nicholson's nose to spite his face – and even the bandage put across it became unforgettable.
Maisie Williams single-handedly rises to the challengeTV
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 2 Michelle Obama highlights harsh restrictions faced by Saudi women after meeting King Salman without wearing a headscarf
- 3 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
- 4 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
- 5 Isis publicly behead man in Syrian town square for 'insulting Allah' as he screams for help
Heavy metal producer's corpse to be mutilated by models as per his dying wish
The Jump 2015 line-up: Joey Essex, Mike Tindall, Jodie Kidd and co take to the slopes
Game of Thrones: Grey Worm actor Jacob Anderson is all for more male nudity – as long as he can keep his clothes on
Roald Dahl letter warning student to 'eschew beastly adjectives' goes viral 35 years later
Our fascination with the Arctic from Greek myths to Sky Atlantic's new drama Fortitude
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures