Alice’s Restaurant (1969)


“Group W is where they put ya if you may not be moral enough to join the army after committin’ your special crime. There was all kinds of mean, nasty ugly-lookin’ people on the bench there. There was mother rapers… father stabbers… father rapers… Father rapers! Sittin’ right there on the bench next to me!” – Arlo

Number of Times Seen – 1 (3 Sep 2018)

Brief Synopsis – The story of a folk singer as he tries to find his place in the world.

My Take on it – This is an extremely strange and boring film that makes little sense.

It tries to show the Hippie attitude during the late 60’s especially in their way of protesting against the Vietnam War and the way that the US Government was running things at the time.

The characters presented here are not very intriguing or interesting and there are way too many scenes that drag along instead of being more succinct.

The story feels like it’s much more allegorical than narrative and that also hurts being able to try and understand the characters and everything that is happening to them.

I’m a bit baffled that this film was able to garner an Oscar nomination for Best Director (its sole nomination) for the work of Arthur Penn.

The fact that this film is based on both real events and a famous song are interesting tidbits to know yet they don’t add at all to the story to help us care more about what is going on.

Bottom Line – Strange film about the hippie attitude during the Vietnam War era that feels too allegorical for its own good. The characters aren’t very interesting to watch and there are too many scenes that just drag along. I’m a bit shocked that this film was nominated for Best Director at the Oscars, especially since it’s the film’s sole nomination.  The fact that the story of the film is based on a song and somewhat on real events is an interesting fact, but unfortunately not interesting enough to care what will happen.

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – After discovering that the character “Officer Obie” was modeled after him, actual Stockbridge (Massachusetts) Sheriff William Obanhein demanded that he play the role himself. His reason: “If anyone is going to make a fool out of me, it might as well be me!” (From IMDB)

Rating – Razzie Worthy (3/10)

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3 thoughts on “Alice’s Restaurant (1969)

  1. Pingback: Movies Reviewed Index A-Z |

  2. Pingback: Did They Get it Right? – Best Director – Oscars 1969 |

  3. Pingback: Temporal Top Ten – 1969 |

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