Watch Kansas City
- 1 hr 55 min
Kansas City is a 1996 film directed by Robert Altman, a renowned filmmaker known for his slice-of-life dramas that focus on human relationships and intricacies. This film is set during the Great Depression and takes place in Kansas City, Missouri, an area that was notorious for its jazz scene. The film follows the story of a young woman named Blondie (played by Jennifer Jason Leigh) who is desperate to get her husband out of jail. In her effort to do so, she kidnaps a Deacon, Seldom Seen (played by Harry Belafonte), who is a prominent figure in the city's black underworld. She hopes to use him as a bargaining chip to get her husband released.
The film also follows the story of a wealthy woman named Carolyn Stilton (played by Miranda Richardson) who is unhappy in her life and longs for excitement. She becomes fascinated by the jazz scene and is drawn to Seldom Seen. Through her interactions with him, she discovers a world she never knew existed and becomes embroiled in a dangerous game of power and deceit.
The film is shot in Altman's usual style, with multiple storylines intertwining and a large ensemble cast of characters. The cinematography is beautifully done, capturing the gritty and realistic feel of the era, with dimly lit nightclubs and smoky rooms. The jazz music featured in the film is authentic and performed by some of the best jazz musicians of the time, transporting the audience back to the 1930s.
Jennifer Jason Leigh gives a standout performance as Blondie, the desperate and determined woman who will do anything to save her husband. Miranda Richardson also shines as Carolyn, giving an understated and nuanced performance as a woman who is looking for something she can't quite name. Harry Belafonte is both menacing and charming as Seldom Seen, the powerful leader of the city's black underworld.
The film explores themes of race, power dynamics, and the pursuit of the American Dream. It shows the stark contrast between the lives of the wealthy and the working-class during the Great Depression, and the lengths people will go to in order to survive. It also shines a light on the racism and segregation that was prevalent during that time, as well as the role that jazz music played in bringing people together.
Overall, Kansas City is a beautifully crafted film that captures the spirit of the era and tells a captivating story with a talented cast. It is a must-watch for fans of Robert Altman and anyone interested in the history of jazz and its impact on American culture.
Kansas City is a 1996 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 55 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.3 and a MetaScore of 57.