California Split


California Split

Critics Consensus

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Reviews Counted: 14

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Audience Score

User Ratings: 2,895


All Critics | Top Critics
Average Rating: N/A
Reviews Count: 0
Fresh: 0
Rotten: 0


Average Rating: 3.8/5

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Movie Info

With a free-flowing storyline, much improvisation, and a multi-channel soundtrack, filmmaker Robert Altman creates a challenging, not always successful portrait of two different gamblers united by their compulsion for gaming. Much of the story centers on brief, widely varied episodes from their lives.

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George Segal
as Bill Denny
Elliott Gould
as Charlie Waters
Ann Prentiss
as Barbara Miller
Gwen Welles
as Susan Peters
Joseph Walsh
as Sparkie
Vincent Palmieri
as First Bartender
Bert Remsen
as Helen Brown
Barbara London
as Lady on Bus
Barbara Ruick
as Reno Barmaid
Jeff Goldblum
as Lloyd Harris
Barbara Colby
as Receptionist
Vince Palmieri
as Bartender
Jack Riley
as Bartender
Alyce Passman
as Go-Go Girl
Sierra Bandit
as Woman at Bar
John Considine
as Man at Bar
Richard Kennedy
as Used Car Salesman
Mike Greene
as Reno Dealer
Sharon Compton
as Nugie's Wife
Arnold Herzatein
as California Club Poker Player
Marc Cavell
as California Club Poker Player
Alvin Weissman
as California Club Poker Player
Mickey Fox
as California Club Poker Player
Carolyn Lohmann
as California Club Poker Player
Winston Lee
as Reno Poker Player
Harry Drackett
as Reno Poker Player
Thomas Hal Phillips
as Reno Poker Player
Ted Say
as Reno Poker Player
A.J. Hood
as Reno Poker Player
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Critic Reviews for California Split

All Critics (14) | Top Critics (7)

  • California Split has never been heralded as one of the key Altmans. But the few things it does - friendship and disappointment and the drab and desperate thrill of the gambler's life - it does superbly.

    Dec 9, 2014 | Full Review…
  • Sold as a comedy, the film scans more like American-century Dostoyevsky, with comp cocktails.

    Mar 25, 2008
  • Robert Altman's masterful 1974 study of the psychology of the compulsive gambler.

    Mar 25, 2008 | Full Review…
  • The film is technically and physically handsome, all the more so for being mostly location work, but lacks a cohesive and reinforced sense of story direction.

    Mar 25, 2008 | Full Review…

    Variety Staff

    Top Critic
  • Altman feels rather than thinks his way into a subject, with a special interest in how people relate to one another in moments of crisis.

    Feb 9, 2006
  • A fascinating, vivid movie, not quite comparable to any other movie that I can immediately think of. Nor is it easily categorized.

    May 9, 2005 | Rating: 4/5

Audience Reviews for California Split


Altman's hilarious look at compulsive gambling is perhaps his most underrated film.

Graham Jones
Graham Jones

Super Reviewer

An amusing and completely uncategorizable film that captures the mood of its period, an atmosphere long gone by now where the low life and unstable compulsive gamblers round up looking for little green papers to pass through the week or more hopefully to heal their wounds. As some other works by its director, it feels over talky, anarchic, scattered, erratic, but he always gets the best out of his cast, giving them time to improvise and take it to the wildest, in the case of Elliot Gould. He and George Segal were perfect for the job, the chemistry is real, un rehearsed. Although the story doesn't take much chances, the reliance on its actors' charm is what makes it quite enjoyable.

Pierluigi Puccini
Pierluigi Puccini

Super Reviewer

a stellar tragicomic buddy film about compulsive gamblers. extremely natural, even by altman standards. elliott gould at his manic peak

Stella Dallas
Stella Dallas

Super Reviewer


Ultimate Altman?

Bob Stinson
Bob Stinson

Super Reviewer

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