ONE FLEW OVER THE KUCKOO’S NEST (R, 133 min., color, United Artists, Nov. 21, 1975)
ONE FLEW OVE THE KUCKOO’S NEST is in that elite club of movies that swept all five of the “big awards” at the Oscars. When it won for best picture, actor, actress, screenplay and director at the 1976 Academy Awards, it was the first to have done so since IT HAPPENED ONE NIGHT (1934). KUCKOO’S NEST debuted at number 20 on AFI’s original 100 Movies List. It has since slipped to 33. Has it slipped in your estimation?
It’s well known that Kirk Douglas had the rights to the book for many years, acquiring it when he had designs on playing the role of McMurphy. In fact, Kirk Douglas had played McMurphy in a stage adaptation of the book that did not fare well financially. Years later it was Kirk’s son, Michael, who made the project his first as a producer. And what a first time outing it was. Roger Ebert reports seeing Michael Douglas stumble in a daze out into the lobby following the rapturous reception of 3000 people at the film’s Chicago Film Festival Premiere. If he was in a daze that night the next few years of his (and his star, Jack Nicholson’s) career probably seemed like a blur. Those were heady days. Some suggest they were the best years for movies.
CAST: Jack Nicholson, Louise Fletcher, Will Sampson, William Redfield, Brad Dourif, Sydney Lassick, Scatman Crothers, Dean R. Brooks, Danny DeVito
Watched on Blu*ray (Warner Bros. Home Video)
*Most Mondays I watch a classic or historically significant movie that falls into one of these categories: 1) Have never seen it, or 2) Have never seen it uncut, or 3) Have only seen it once, or 4) Haven’t seen it in a very long time.
Some information from: IMDb Pro, BoxOfficeMojo