HUSBANDS
1970, Sony Repertory, 131 min, USA, Dir: John Cassavetes

Death, booze and gambling dominate this dour, yet strangely life-affirming dissection of masculinity and the male ego. Cassavetes’ fifth feature, HUSBANDS follow three men, who abandon their wives and adult responsibilities for purely hedonistic exploits after learning of the death of a common friend. Seeing camaraderie as the only antidote for existential dread, the trio makes its way to London, where they forge a stronger bond while becoming further disconnected from reality. Starring Ben Gazzara, Peter Falk and Cassavetes himself, the film is a painful, sublime, and often funny portrait of grief and desperation.


THE KILLING OF A CHINESE BOOKIE
1976, Westchester Films, 129 min, Dir: John Cassavetes

A close friend of director-writer John Cassavetes, Timothy Carey stars here as Flo, a hulking Hollywood mobster who plots to take over the Sunset Boulevard strip club run by Ben Gazzara.


MINNIE AND MOSKOWITZ
1971, Universal, 114 min, USA, Dir: John Cassavetes

Minnie Moore is a museum curator whose married boyfriend does little for her self-esteem. Enter parking-lot attendant Seymour Moskowitz, who tells Minnie, “I think about you so much, I forget to go to the bathroom!” As mismatched as the title couple may seem, Gena Rowlands and Seymour Cassel make these wounded but hopeful souls entirely real. While Cassavetes remains conscious of the disconnect between movie-inspired romantic ideals and real-life relationships, he gives an early-’70s New Hollywood spin to the screwball comedy here.


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