Video Release: May 15, 2007
Rating: R (MPAA)
Studio: Warner Home Video
- Runtime: 121 minutes
- NTSC (Canada and USA)
- Originally in English
- Released in Japanese
A haunting, poetic anti-Western based on the 1959 novel by Edmund Naughton, Robert Altman’s MCCABE AND MRS. MILLER is a deeply moving motion picture concerning love and the pursuit of wealth in early America. John McCabe (Warren Beatty), a determined businessman with a mysterious past, settles in Presbyterian Church, a small Northwestern town, and opens up a saloon and a brothel. Soon after, the English head madame, Constance Miller (Julie Christie) arrives and forms a partnership with McCabe in order to manage the brothel's business affairs. McCabe soon has trouble expressing his true feelings to Mrs. Miller, with whom he has fallen in love; she, in turn, relies on opium to distract her from her own personal sorrows. After a powerful company arrives and offers to buy out McCabe’s property, his stubborn refusal ends up jeopardizing his life, resulting in a showdown with three hired killers in the middle of a freak blizzard. Vilmos Zsigmond’s faded imagery--purposely manipulated by "flashing" the film stock before shooting--along with production designer Leon Ericksen’s authentic town, brings to life a past world that is tainted with an underlying sadness. Beatty, as the lovesick McCabe, and Christie, who was nominated for an Ocar as the hard-nosed Mrs. Miller, deliver earnest performances that add an even greater despondency to the story, which is heightened by Leonard Cohen’s melancholy soundtrack.
An entrepreneurial drifter with a hidden past builds a makeshift whorehouse and casino in a small Pacific Northwest mining town during the turn of the century. Assisting him is a world-weary, opium-smoking British madam. Another outstanding revisionist genre pic from Altman, with a beautiful original soundtrack by Leonard Cohen. Academy Award Nominations: Best Actress--Julie Christie.
Filmed in Vancouver, British Columbia, with color by Alpha Cine, prints by Technicolor; shot in Panavision.
Released in USA June 24, 1971.
Screened at the 33rd Spoleto Festival (Cinema in the Bordello) in 1990.