Thomas Crown Affair (1968)
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- 8-Page Booklet featuring Production Notes
Top Customer Reviews
Actually, the remake was only loosely based on the original. The original is about a rich guy who knocks off a bank, and the remake about a rich guy who steals art.
This film is well crafted and though the story is far fetched (as in the remake) it's entertaining. Norman Jewison does a terrific job of directing. His visual interpretations, camera angles and dramatic effects are timeless. He overuses the split screen concept a bit, but we need to remember that in 1968 this was fairly new technology and he was probably enamoured with the novelty of it. Think of how much `morphing' was being used when it was first developed.
Probably the best scene involved the chess match between Thomas (Steve McQueen) and Vicki (Faye Dunaway). It was far more erotic than all the scenes where Rene Russo was running around naked in the remake.
The acting was excellent, with Dunaway taking top honors as the stop-at-nothing insurance investigator who literally gets her man. Steve McQueen played the rich macho ego maniac to perfection. His only minus was his phony victory laugh, which was overacted and overused. Paul Burke stayed appropriately but effectively on the sidelines as the police detective.
In comparing the two films, I'd have to say it's about even. The remake had a more inventive and interesting story, replacing the bank robbery with an art heist, but it was also more ridiculous in the final disposition of the stolen painting.Read more ›
So does this film hold up? Is it worth watching? The first half hour of the film - - the robbery is still an exciting, stylish, entertaining sequence that few films will top in terms of hipness. It's here the multiple screen gimmick works best. It's here that Hal Ashby's editing and Walter Hill's second unit work is most impressive. It's the best part of the film and it works beautifully. (Yes that's future directors Hal Ashby and Walter Hill I just mentioned).
Affair is directed by Norman Jewison (a former editor/turned director who had just directed In the Heat of the Night, and The Russians are Coming, The Russians are Coming). United Artists didn't put much pressure or time constraints on Jewison, and Jewison took this very weak screenplay with an interesting premise and worked with writer Alan R. Trustman to create a sandbox for him and legendary cinematographer Haskell Wexler to play in. They were young, they were anxious to break rules and try new things and they happened to wind up at Montreal Expo 67 and in the audience of a ground-breaking multi-screen extravaganza called Habitat. Habitat was created by film/maker and graphic designer Pablo Ferro. Jewison, Wexler and Ashby had found the gimmick they were looking for.Read more ›
What about the NEW version?
I have been a huge fan of the original Thomas Crown Affair since I first saw it while in the military in 1969..... and bought the 1999 "re-make" because I heard so many good things about it. I must say that honestly there are good points in BOTH films. I never quite bought the fact that the original wealthy "Crown" got his "kicks" robbing a bank.... so stealing the "Monet" made much more sense to me. I also thought the story was a bit more interesting in the new version and I was more satisfied by the challenge Bronsnan's character found in Russo's bluntness.
Overall, however this 1969 "Crown" is the version I prefer. It contains an absolutely beautiful music score by Michel LeGrand (which is superior to the loud, lackluster and frangmented score that Bill Conti created for the new version). The title track here is "Windmills of Your Mind" is an awesome song, but also amazing is "Her Eyes, His Eyes" created for the infamous chess playing sequence. I also prefer the sensuous and sexy elegance of the fire between McQueen and Dunaway to the overtly sweaty lust that Brosnan and Russo desparately share together... this film is more subtile and suggests sexuality.. which seems more fascinating than just the plain nakedness in the new version.
Although I do prefer this film to the remake, both versions are well made and interesting in their own right, and should be enjoyed for what they are and what makes them so entertaining.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
PLOT: A bored millionaire plots a near perfect robbery.
1968~ Thomas Crown (Steve McQueen) millionaire likes the thrills in life from his high risk hobbies to gliders. Read more
McQueen and Dunaway at their best. They don't make films like this anymore.Published 1 month ago by paul r.pizzo
THIS IS ONE COOL MOVIE WITH TWO OF THE BEST MATCHED talents TOGETHER.Published 2 months ago by John Warnke
Great movie, I had never seen the original. Thoroughly entertained.Published 2 months ago by John Garrison
The remake with Pierce Brosnan and Renee Russo is 10x better than this..Published 2 months ago by Tom H.
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