The Last of Sheila - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Last of Sheila Reviews

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½ June 9, 2012
El compositor de Broadway Stephen Sondheim se une al actor Anthony Perkins para escribir un retorcido guion acerca de una mujer que es atropellada por un desconicido y el maquiavelico plan de su esposo (James Coburn) para encontrar al culpable y vengarse al mismo tiempo. Multiples giros y cientos de pistas se presentaran a lo largo de la historia para que el espectador inteligente y con buen ojo logre descubrir al culpable. Ademas funciona como una gran satira al mundo despiadado del cine.
½ April 30, 2012
A wonderful puzzler of a mystery film and surely one of the least-known best movies of the 1970s! Perfectly cast too: Coburn, Cannon, Welch, Benjamin, Mason, Hackett, McShane. Watch it at least twice; the puzzle is an art. Great cast, effortless direction, terrific theme song by Bette Midler.
½ January 30, 2012
Old murder mystery film. Just not my thing.
June 4, 2011
THE LAST OF SHEILA (1973)
½ May 2, 2011
A tremendously entertaining murder-mystery romp that shines because of its top-notch cast and a sharp, witty screenplay by Anthony Perkins and Stephen Sondheim. A genuinely puzzling puzzle of a film stylishly staged by director Herbert Ross. A lot of fun.
½ April 1, 2011
A wonderful puzzler of a mystery film and surely one of the least-known best movies of the 1970s! Perfectly cast too: Coburn, Cannon, Welch, Benjamin, Mason, Hackett, McShane. Watch it at least twice; the puzzle is an art. Great cast, effortless direction, terrific theme song by Bette Midler.
½ March 31, 2011
Just about as top-flight a murder mystery as you can get. The cast is great (Mason pretty much steals the show), the locales are interesting, and director Ross handles the numerous characters and plotlines with ease. What makes the film so great is, without question, the fantastically clever and witty screenplay by Sondheim and Perkins (an unlikely scripting duo if there ever was one). Having never heard of this movie before watching it, I was pretty blown away by it; this is definitely an underseen gem.
March 31, 2011
A rich and engrossing game of murder/mystery.
March 19, 2011
A total mindfuck. And amazing.
January 15, 2011
At first, I didn't care for "The Last of Sheila." I was having a lot of trouble keeping all of the characters in order; however, once the movie's first twist occurred and it spiraled into a new direction, I was hooked and wondering what could possibly happen next! This film is reminiscent of Hitchcock, showing you just enough to let your imagination fill in the rest of the grizzly details. The well-crafted screenplay keeps a sense of believability throughout the film and reveals enough clues in the beginning of the film that an audience member could solve the puzzle before the characters in the film "if they are SMART enough." Although I don't enjoy the story as much as Ten Little Indians or Clue, it has the same sensation. If you're discouraged at first, it really picks up after a slow start.
½ January 9, 2011
Why were pants in the 1970s so tight?
December 13, 2010
Fun, VEEERRRYYY 70's murder-mystery with a lot of smarmy Hollywood Big-shots playing smarmy Hollywood Big-shots (Wow-what a stretch!) invited for a getaway on one of their number's private yacht to endure a slew of endless mind-games as well as an unsettling scavenger-hunt traipse through an abandoned mission, all in the name of getting them to reveal their nasty past-transgressions. Filled with a lot of hip (For the time-) Hollywood-insider jargon, snappy, wise-ass dialogue, & some kinky. very-dated sleaze, which all add to the film's odd, yet captivating feel. The cast is good, especially Richard Benjamin, James Mason, the always- intriguing, very-under-rated, & died-too-soon Joan Hackett, and James Coburn as the smug & sardonic host. Raquel Welch, while never a great actress, is gorgeous as ever,and basically along for the ride as so much eye-candy.
½ August 1, 2010
A delightfully clever mystery from the unlikely screenwriting duo of Anthony Perkins and Stephen Sondheim. It's fun, compelling, and full of smart jabs at the Hollywood crowd.
July 29, 2010
The Last of Sheila, a star-packed murder mystery written by Broadway legends, really doesn't start or even progress with much momentum at all, but when the true wheels of the actual murder puzzle start turning, it pulls a lot of palpable tension and sharp dialogue out of nowhere and does the job. It doesn't help that first half that I was tempted to turn it off, but the fact that the intrigue ratcheted up at the precise moment when I was going to is what saved it by a hair's breadth. And I'm glad I stuck it out. It proved itself worthwhile.

The movie comes out of a fine heritage of murder puzzles from such as Agatha Christie and Patricia Highsmith. In fact, it's a little rare to see this material showing up first as a movie. It feels like the sort of story that would start life as a play. Bringing seven people together and then doing the old "one of the people sitting here amongst us is a murderer" schtick is inherently stagy. Nevertheless, it functions well as a movie, perhaps since the screenplay has as much to do with characters as with crime. The movie was written by Stephen Sondheim and Anthony Perkins, and they flaunt an apparent sense of showbiz manners and dialogue. They've also play Name That Tune with us: We can enjoy speculating who the bitchy agent was motivated by, or the director on the skids, or the centerfold, each played respectively by Dyan Cannon, James Mason and Raquel Welch, two out of three of whom kept me watching purely just to watch.

I like the concept of a murder mystery set among showbiz types because Hollywood is often thought to be shy about death and shrink from it. Genuine sorrow seems quite rare. The movie opens as a watchful-waiting stratagem concerning Coburn and the killer, which is latently intriguing though it rambles too far away from the point of tension and plays more like a '60s romp than an expository double-blind. Yet it makes a striking hairpin halfway through. And it actually is a game to them; they don't spend time mourning when somebody dies, just clean up the blood and tally one more loser against their competition for a win. And yet it's barely started until just two of these characters spend a great deal of time deliberately hammering out the true significance of the clues, a scene so tight, well-acted, well-written and loaded with sharp wit that it makes the whole package worth it.

A better part of the performances are pointed and mercenary, and very good, particularly James Mason with his typical cultured obstinacy. Dyan Cannon as the agent. Joan Hackett is beautiful and tender, and Richard Benjamin treads a fine line between voice of reason and a screenwriter trying to think in formulas. Coburn is always entertaining owing to his sheer presence and it's interesting watching an Ian McShane so much younger than anyone my age is aware he ever was. Welch is quite wooden by comparison, but as I said beforeâ?¦
June 21, 2010
A classic, self-aware whodunit flick with a clever script, full of twists and turns. Stands a second viewing.
June 16, 2010
Really suspenseful and fun. Great 70's mystery movie.
½ May 28, 2010
Twists within twists within switchbacks, reversals and flagrant misdirection starting from the very first scene. No matter how smart you think you are, the amazing script (by Anthony Perkins and Steven Sondheim!) is roughly 18 steps ahead of you. And it's hilarious too.
May 24, 2010
Yderst veldrejet whodunit, med sorthumoristiske indslag. Forlanger fuld opmaerkshomhed, hvis ikke man skal smides af undervejs - men beloenningen for interessen udebliver ikke! Delikat!
April 9, 2010
"I dont have any gloves..."

A childhood fav, I adore RBenjamin & JMason. At Netflix.
April 4, 2010
Sondheim really is for Broadway. Not that this film is a bad mystery film. It's interesting, but the plot is not edgy and unexpected enough, unlike Sondheim's musicals.
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