Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The Great Performances: Robert Mitchum in The Friends of Eddie Coyle (1973)


J.D. said...

Mitchum has never been better. I also like that all the crooks and tough guys in this film actually look the part! No Hollywood pretty boys. It adds to the authenticity of the film. You really feel like it is a window into this world.

Peter Lenihan said...

My favorite Mitchum performance is still probably The Night of the Hunter, but he's fantastic in this. I'm not as over the moon about Eddie Coyle as a lot of other people are; Yates' direction is a bit too slick (the wrong word, but I don't know how else to describe it) for the material. It's a problem I have with a lot of movies from the seventies--even though it's supposed to be the decade of gritty American crime movies, I often find them to be a lot more slick and "Hollywood" than their fifties counterparts.

I re-watched Anne of the Indies recently and loved it, by the way, and watched Experiment Perilous for the first time, which I also really liked but not quite as much.

Drew McIntosh said...

Thanks J.D., I agree with everything you have to say! I think there is a ton of authenticity here.

Peter, the robbery scenes in Coyle have always stood out to me as being somewhat alienated from the rest of the movie, much "slicker" as you say, and just not befitting of the overall tone. Otherwise - though I largely agree with your sentiments re: 50s/70s crime pictures - I've always found Yates' direction here to be adequate, and yes, adequately gritty, particularly in his use of locale. Ultimately, I return to this one over and over simply because I think every single actor here hits it completely out of the park (particularly Mitchum and Jordan), and it's just so much fun to watch.

Also, glad to hear you enjoyed those Tourneur's, really two of his very best and most overlooked movies in my eyes. I could watch them any time.