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McCabe & Mrs. Miller

Director(s): Robert Altman

Theatrical Release: 1971

Cast: Warren Beatty, Julie Christie, William Devane, Shelley Duvall, Rene Auberjonois, Keith Carradine

Genre(s): Drama, western, business, Dean's List

Countries: USA


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Running Time: 121m.

Memorably described by Pauline Kael as "a beautiful pipe dream of a movie," Robert Altman's McCabe and Mrs. Miller reimagines the American West as a muddy frontier filled with hustlers, opportunists, and corporate sharks a turn-of-the-century model for a 1971 America mired in violence and lies. John McCabe (Warren Beatty) wanders into the turn-of-the-century wilderness village known as Presbyterian Church, with vague plans of parlaying his gambling winnings into establishing a fancy casino-brothel-bathhouse. McCabe's partner is prostitute Mrs. Miller (Julie Christie), who despite her apparent distaste for McCabe helps him achieve his goal. Once McCabe and Mrs. Miller become successful, the town grows and prospers, incurring the jealousy of a local mining company, who wants to buy McCabe out. Filmed on location in Canada, McCabe and Mrs. Miller makes use of such Altman "stock company" performers as Shelley Duvall, Rene Auberjonois, John Schuck and Keith Carradine. The seemingly improvised screenplay was based on a novel by Edmund Naughton and the movie features a soundtrack of songs by Leonard Cohen. McCabe and Mrs. Miller joined such other Altman efforts as MASH, The Long Goodbye, and Thieves Like Us in radically revising familar movie genres for the disillusioned Vietnam era. Hal Erickson (allmovie.com)
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