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Thursday, July 19, 2012

You're A Big Boy Now (1966)

A young man (the appealing Peter Kastner) leaves home to escape his smothering and domineering mother (Geraldine Page in an Oscar nominated role) but falls into the clutches of a manipulative, man hating go-go dancer (Elizabeth Hartman). The breakthrough film of Francis Ford Coppola who directed and also wrote (from the novel by David Benedictus) the screenplay, this is one of the earliest examples of the youth comedy that anticipates films like THE GRADUATE and HAROLD AND MAUDE. It's a quirky, free spirited piece that's not above inserting cliches like flying kites in Central Park or running through New York streets to show how carefree you are. Pity that Coppola couldn't come up with a better finale than a wild chase with all the cast members chasing Kastner all over Manhattan. On the plus side, Ernest Laszlo's edgy camera work nicely captures the New York of the mid sixties and there's a terrific song score by John Sebastian and The Lovin' Spoonful. With Julie Harris, Karen Black, Rip Torn, Tony Bill, Michael Dunn and Dolph Sweet.

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