Thursday, April 09, 2015

CATCH-22 (1970) - Mike Nichols

"Ok, let me see if I've got this straight. In order to be grounded, I've got to be crazy. 
And I must be crazy to keep flying. But if I ask to be grounded, 
that means I'm not crazy anymore, and I have to keep flying."

Arkin as Captain Yossarian on the titular military paradox. It's a tough job being the only "sane" person in your unit. A tougher job standing out among this cavalcade of great actors with arguably juicier roles. Jon Voight, Buck Henry, Anthony Perkins, Orson Welles, Martin Balsam, Bob Newhart, just to name a few. But Arkin makes a fine fulcrum around which the insanity (and explosions) may whirlwind. This has to be one of the toughest books to adapt of all time. I didn't like it so much when I first saw it on heavily cropped VHS years and years ago. This week, on mp4, I admired it much more. Hats off to the late-great Mike Nichols for tackling a Hell(er) of a task. Or should I say "Pants off"?


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