Watch Opening Night
- 2 hr 24 min
Opening Night is a 1977 drama film directed and written by John Cassavetes. This movie tells the story of a woman named Myrtle Gordon, played by Gena Rowlands, who is a renowned actress preparing for her latest play, The Second Woman. The movie is set during the rehearsals and performances leading up to the opening night of the play. Myrtle is a brilliant actress, but she is struggling with the difficulty of the role, as well as her own personal issues. She is going through a mid-life crisis and is haunted by the death of a young fan who died in a tragic car accident. She is also struggling with her own aging and her place in the industry as a woman in her 40s. Throughout the movie, we see Myrtle's interactions with her cast and crew, including her long-time friend and co-star, Maurice Aarons, played by Ben Gazzara. They have a complicated relationship that is highlighted by their past romantic involvement. Maurice serves as a sounding board for Myrtle during this difficult time, helping her to navigate her feelings and insecurities. The movie explores the dark side of the theatre industry, highlighting the pressures that actors and actresses face. The audience gets a glimpse into the world of theatre and the hard work that goes into putting on a production, including the frustrations that come with being an artist. The opening night of the play becomes a turning point for Myrtle as she confronts her fears and anxieties. The acting in this movie is phenomenal, especially Gena Rowlands as Myrtle. She gives a raw, powerful performance that is both heartbreaking and unforgettable. The other actors, including John Cassavetes himself and Joan Blondell, are also great, and you really believe in the relationships between the characters. The direction is also excellent, with Cassavetes capturing the intricacies of the theatre world, showcasing the behind-the-scenes drama, and exploring the emotional depths of the characters. He uses long takes and close-ups effectively to create an intimate feel that draws the viewer in. The production design and costumes are also well-done and help transport the audience to the world of the theatre. This movie has been hailed as one of Cassavetes' best, and it is not hard to see why. It is a powerful story about the creative process and the struggles that artists go through. It is a love letter to the theatre, but it is also a realistic depiction of the difficulties in the industry. Overall, Opening Night is a must-see movie for anyone interested in the art of acting, as well as those who appreciate well-crafted character studies. It is an emotionally intense film that will stay with you long after the credits have rolled.