Cher, Sandy Dennis, and Karen Black sparkle in Robert Altman’s acclaimed film version of Ed Graczyk’s play. It’s 1975, and the all-female members of a James Dean fan club have reunited to mark the 20th anniversary of their idol’s death. They meet in a five-and-dime store in a small Texas town near where Dean made Giant, his last film. The reunion becomes the occasion for each character to reflect on the dashed dreams and disappointments of life. Altman had directed the play on Broadway with the same cast; his film even uses the same unique David Gropman stage set, in which twin dime-store sets separated by two-way mirrors allow the characters to move back-and-forth in time. Pauline Kael called it the kind of stage-to-screen adaptation that “shouldn’t work, but does” — due to Altman’s skill, poetry, and magic. Cher’s performance, a revelation to many, was the breakthrough in her acting career. Jimmy Dean was the first of several Altman features adapted from plays; this new 35mm restoration is the first effort in UCLA’s major project to preserve the films of the great director. “A cinematic tour de force ... Excellent performances ... Stunning stuff” (Geoff Andrew, Time Out). Colour, 35mm. 109 mins. Preservation funded by The Film Foundation and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association.
"When Robert Altman gives a project everything he's got, his skills are such that he can make poetry out of fake poetry and magic out of fake magic."New Yorker | full review
"Startlingly successful translation from one medium to another, with Altman turning the first of his theatrical adaptations into a cinematic tour de force."Time Out | full review