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That Cold Day in the Park
Sandy Dennis excels in this unsettling psychological thriller, the first truly personal film from American master filmmaker Robert Altman.
Director: Robert Altman
Just prior to his career breakthrough M*A*S*H, Robert Altman made this memorably unsettling psychological thriller, which originally premiered at the Cannes Film Festival. Frances Austen, a young, wealthy spinster, invites a mute teenager into her apartment after finding him freezing in the park next to where she lives. Despite her best efforts, their lack of communication only increases her sense of loneliness, as her possessiveness spirals into frightening new realms.
A remarkable central performance by Sandy Dennis anchors this fascinating, haunting tale, anticipating Altman’s subsequent studies of female psychological breakdown, Images and 3 Women. Shot by László Kovács (Easy Rider, Five Easy Pieces) with Altman’s trademark long lenses and drifting zooms, as well as intriguing experimentation with sound, That Cold Day in the Park is a long-neglected gem from an American master.