Friday, April 24, 2009
Buffalo Bill and the Indians @ the Charles Theatre this week
SATURDAY, APRIL at 25 NOON
MONDAY, APRIL 27 at 7 PM
THURSDAY, APRIL 30 at 9 PM
1976 Robert Altman. Paul Newman, Joel Grey, Burt Lancaster, Shelley Duvall, Kevin McCarthy, Harvey Keitel, Allan F. Nicholls, Geraldine Chaplin, John Considine, Robert DoQui, Bert Remsen. 123m.
Paul Newman's larger-than-life performance is the surprise at the center of Buffalo Bill and the Indians, or Sitting Bull's History Lesson, another of his provocative and largely undiscovered black comedies. Altman's clever casting of the revered actor as the eponymous Wild West charlatan turned the part into a scathing meditation on contemporary celebrity, and Newman gamely played along. Eschewing his card-calling likeability, Newman portrays William Cody as a faker, a racist, and a charming but vainglorious fool in some of the most honest and underrated work of his career. The film is packed with great performances, among them a rueful Burt Lancaster as Ned Buntline, dime novelist and chief engineer of Cody's legend, and a hilariously meek Harvey Keitel. Long before Clint Eastwood's Unforgiven mined the same territory, Buffalo Bill cast a cold eye on the lies history tells about the great frontier.