The Kid Stays in the Picture Reviews
- This is a very interesting documentary on Legendary film Producer Robert Evans who is responsible for making some of the biggest classics of the 70'2 including The Godfather, Chinatown and Love Story. This is a must for film loves...check it out!
Narrated by Evans himself and based on his autobiography, the movie gives a great insight into what happens behind the scenes in Hollywood, and how careers rise and fall. Some of the anecdotes and incidents are quite amazing.
A must-see for anyone who is interested in the history of cinema, especially '70s cinema.
Fun nevertheless, especially if you like to believe that anyone can break into Hollywood show biz given the right amount of luck,
To add to his entertaining life story the documentary is visually enticing. Where there is a lack of video material in some instances the screen is filled in with photographs animated and brought to life, newspaper headlines from the period, movie clips, news reels but most annoyingly, footage of ponds and leaves and his empty loungeroom and bedroom - it is at these points that it feels as though they are almost grasping at straws, but luckily Evans narration distracts you long enough.
I quite enjoy the technique of using photos to animate a story and it is done particularly well here. Highly recommend this doco to those interested in Hollywood, the unseen world of film and those who enjoy watching interesting biographies.
The lack of objectivity can be troubling -- the enemies Evans has made are not asked to testify. He does berate himself for a notorious drug bust and laments the commercial flop of "The Cotton Club," but he sidesteps other embarrassments such as his seven marriages (actress Ali MacGraw is the only wife mentioned) and the disastrous "Popeye" musical. He also liberally congratulates himself on a series of anti-drug TV specials titled "Get High on Yourself," which he humbly labels "the Woodstock of the '80s." (I personally have no memory of the show, and the clips look like horrid, saccharine kitsch. Hooray, Fonzie sings!) Elsewhere, it's puzzling that the making of "Chinatown" is casually glossed over, even though the film represented a volatile reunion of the Evans/Roman Polanski team that also birthed "Rosemary's Baby." And why no talk at all about "The Godfather II"? Hmm. But beyond these misgivings, plenty of interesting material emerges. For instance, I didn't realize Mia Farrow essentially chose "Rosemary's Baby" stardom over one-time husband Frank Sinatra, and that he served her with divorce papers during the shoot. It's also notable that Evans rejected the first cut of "The Godfather" (reason: sketchy storytelling) and pressed director Francis Ford Coppola to add approximately 50 more minutes. Obviously, that was the right call.
Make sure to sit through the closing credits for a hilarious, presumably improvised Dustin Hoffman outtake.