Loosely based around the California water wars, Roman Polanski’s final American film stars Jack Nicholson as Private Investigator Jake Gittes. Gittes is hired by a woman claiming to be the wife of the chief engineer of Los Angeles Water and Power as she believes her husband is having an affair. Gittes uncovers the alleged affair which opens up a twisting tale of deception, double crossing, profiteering and murder. Often sited as one of the greatest Neo-Noir and mystery films of all time, it helped to cement Jack Nicholson’s status as an A List star and nearly forty years on still has a timeless feel and wonderfully layered curiosity about it.
Although I thought Chinatown was an excellent film I found myself zoning in and out of it as I watched. I don’t know why though as there is very little I didn’t like and I think this says more about my frame of mind at the time than the film itself. Despite my concentration waning, I noted several wonderful things about Polanski’s classic Noir gem.