The Last Picture Show remains one of the quieter, more ruminative films made by the Seventies movie brats, with ballads on the jukebox and Bogdanovich's broad-canvas style tempered by writer Larry McMurtry's precision eye for small-town poetry. The cast forms a melancholy parade: former stars (Ben Johnson), stars-to-be (Shepherd, Jeff Bridges, Randy Quaid), actors who never quite made it (the Bottoms boys, Timothy and Sam) and actresses who should have been bigger (Burstyn, Cloris Leachman). Outside on Main Street, winds rustle the leaves, buses head off into the unknown, and we're left to witness a moment passing, gone forever.
(first published in The DVD Stack 2, 2007)
A restored print of The Last Picture Show opens in selected cinemas from tomorrow.