Monday, March 21, 2011

Two From One Time: 1973 ('The Paper Chase', 'American Graffiti')

'The Paper Chase' is a very well made film featuring bright characters, which makes it enjoyable to watch. The story centers around one brilliant first year Harvard Law School student's relationships with his intimidating contract law professor and his new girlfriend (who inconveniently - or conveniently -  turns out to be his professor's daughter)... as well as the challenges he faces during that pivotal and transitional year.  The film questions whether it should be of such importance to always chase paper at different levels in life - from a birth certificate to school diplomas to marriage certificates to a will - particularly for those who study and practice law for a living. It has a quiet but strong philosophy. It is magnetic as a whole, with solid writing and performances. I imagine that when the film was released in 1973, it had an impact on law students everywhere and become an instant classic or go-to-film for that particular experience. And it probably remains the one to watch for them, still. It is altogether a very pleasing film and worth checking out. 


Who doesn't love 'American Graffiti'? There is probably little to say about this movie that hasn't been said. but for me, this one will always be special because I watched it several years ago at The Bryant Park Film Festival in New York (the city's annual summer outdoor film screening, which was probably my favorite thing about NY summers) on a date with my then boyfriend, now husband. For us, it was the perfect date, watching the 1950's style confection on a big screen outdoors in the park. It inspired the feeling of being at a drive-in and took the nostalgia of George Lucas' teenage vision to yet another dimension. For a feel good movie experience, it doesn't get a whole lot better than that.


  1. Roy Scheider is incredibly underrated. I like the collection of films you have here. American Grafitti especially.

  2. Thank you, I've definitely enjoyed participating in your topic discussions at The Movie Snob :)