When Peter Bagdonovich was on fire, he really made some classic films. "The Last Picture Show", "What's up Doc?", and "Paper Moon". Three classics in a three year period.
But as time marches on, Paper Moon seems to be slipping off this list. It's not because there aren't wonderful performances from the two stars, Ryan O'Neal, and daughter Tatum O'Neal.
Because they shine in their roles, playing off each other with the brilliant timing of a Vaudeville act.
This is, of course, the role that helped Tatum O'Neal win the Best Supporting Actress Oscar, and becoming the youngest actor to receive the award. And the cinematography is breath taking in some of the scenes in this film.
Now of course this film comes from a book "Addie Pray", and like the film, the story is seen through the eyes of little Addie.
The film does a great job in setting up the mood and time of the film, with it's opening credits song.
"It's only a Paper Moon" written and released in 1933, the song is light and whimsical, as is the film.
And the black and white in this film is amazing. Everything, far and close is in focus, and that was a big item that Bagdonovich wanted.
The film opens at a funeral of little Addie Loggins (Tatum O'Neal) Mother. A stranger pulls up in the distance in a less then quiet car, and proceeds to join the grave side services. After the locals inquire about the man, Moses Pray (Ryan O'Neal), and find out he was an "old friend" of the deceased, he tells them he's on his way to the same place where Addie's only known living relitive lives, her Aunt.
They ask him if he could drop her off along the way, and he accepts.
From here Moses cons the brother of the man responsible for Addie's mother's death in a drunk driving accident, for two hundred dollars. Then, after sprucing up his car a bit and trying to get Addie on a train to her destination, Addie confronts Moses about being her father, which he denies.
So she then demands the $200. So the adventure begins, as Moses and Addie travel down the road, and Addie helps Moses along the way in some Bible scams, dime store scams, and bootlegging.
I really don't wanna give to much away about this movie for those of you who haven't seen it.
If you haven't seen this film, please, do yourself a favor and see it. If you have seen this film, but now in a while, see it again. It's out on DVD, and is pretty cheap if you are wanting to buy it.
So take the time, and let this film classic, become one of you film favorites.