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Mickey One

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Director: Arthur Penn
1965 / 92min / DCP

Though Bonnie and Clyde is certainly Penn’s more famous infusion of French Nouvelle Vague style into American cinema, his Mickey One, made two years previous, is the more radical film by a considerable margin. Warren Beatty stars as a hepcat stand-up comic who’s got the mob on his tail, on the move through the haunted, seemingly abandoned streets of (principally) Chicago—a city little seen in films of the ’60s thanks to Mayor Daley’s hostility to film production, its South Side granted a desolate majesty courtesy of the black-and-white cinematography by regular Robert Bresson collaborator Ghislain Cloquet, whose loose, jazzy, improvisatory approach is perfectly matched to an original Stan Getz score.

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