Wednesday, February 22, 2017

The Manipulator (1971)

How bad is it? Irritating. Average, but irritating.
Should you see it? If you have a high tolerance for weird.

This is one of those "if you make it weird enough, they'll think it's a masterpiece" films. Mickey Rooney plays an insane man who keeps Luana Anders hostage, imagining he's filming "Cyrano de Bergerac." Keenan Wynn has a cameo and other actors are billed, but it's a two-person show. It pulls out all the tricks for "crazy," whether off-kilter camera angles or stage antics. There's a lot of slaughterhouse beefs and other odd props, Rooney tries to portray a woman at one point and the dialogue is elliptical and stream-of-conscious. I got bored quickly. It may be an acting tour-de-force, but it's not entertainment.

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