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Chinatown 1974 film review

Chinatown 1974 film review

Chinatown (1974, United States)

Running time
131 minutes
Our rating
★★★★★★★★☆☆ 8 / 10

Private detective JJ Gites, hard on his luck, takes up a new case at the request of a sophisticated and rich client. The woman wants him to follow her husband Hollis Mulwray and get proofs of his infidelity. This is what appears to be almost a cliche, soon transforms into a very confusing and complicated case. It turns out that Hollis dies and Gites meets his real wife Evelyn Mulwray. Underneath all of it there is a corruption scandal, the land value speculations, the construction of the dam and ruthless people like Noah Cross, the father of Evelyn. He wants to get rich on artificially induced water shortage. The dark, hidden secrets in that family lead to a tragedy.

The classic crime thriller, the second film directed by Polanski in the United States, in style similiar to Raymond Chandler novel. Great performance from actors, particularly great Jack Nicholson and beautiful, but also tragic, Faye Dunaway. Polanski himself played in one scene. Jerry Goldsmith’s music blends perfectly with the atmosphere of the film. In the role of Noah Cross Polanski casted one of the greatest American directors John Huston. It was a great idea, Huston masterfully creates a character that gives the viewers shivers. This film ranks second on the list of the best films of all time criminal compiled by the American Film Institute.

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Chinatown videos

Chinatown trailer

Creators of Chinatown

Roman Polanski films

Roman Polanski


Roman Polanski films

Roman Polanski


Robert Towne films

Robert Towne


Cast of Chinatown

Jack Nicholson films

Jack Nicholson

as Jake Gittes

Faye Dunaway films

Faye Dunaway

as Evelyn Cross Mulwray

John Huston films

John Huston

as Noah Cross

Perry Lopez films

Perry Lopez

as Lieutenant Lou Escobar

John Hillerman films

John Hillerman

as Russ Yelburton

Darrell Zwerling films

Darrell Zwerling

as Hollis I. Mulwray

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Trivia about Chinatown

Last film by Polanski in US

Chinatown was last film Roman Polanski ever filmed in United States. In 1977, three years after filming Chinatown he was arrested for statutory rape on underage model. After spending 90 days on psychiatric evaluation in prison, later released he fled United States in 1978 to avoid being penalized (in his opinion) twice for the same crime. Since then he could not return to US due to outstanding arrest warrant.

Chinatown quotes

Morty: Can you believe it? We’re in the middle of a drought, and the water commissioner drowns. Only in LA...