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Lives Of Desperation
on 27 January 2016
'A Woman Under The Influence' may be a misnomer. It seems to me this is an entire family under the influence. The story of a family living in LA, and trying to live a life of quiet and not so quiet desperation. Peter Falk plays Nick Longhetti, he works for the city, and he is on call all the time to help fix the water works and anything else that breaks down. Gena Rowland's plays Mabel, a woman put together on a tight string. They have three children, and after viewing this film you wonder if they will grow up as alcoholics in a disheveled world.
John Cassavettes directed this film, and a superb film it is. The director's mother and Gena Rowland's mother also play the mother-in-laws. But the performance to behold is Gena Rowland. She has become Mabel, the woman trying to find her life in a crazy world. Her husband, Nick is also has problems,abusive at times, unclear in his mind, trying to understand his wife,but unable to see the big picture. No one in the family knows how to deal with Mabel, and they bring in the family doctor, who has no presence.
This is a film of a family on the brink, and the performances are so well done, it is difficult to think through the entire film without reacting to the performances. This film stays with you. Why nit did not win every Academy Award I do not understand.
Recommended. prisrob 01-27-16