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Chinatown review

Jack Nicholson gets more than he bargained for in the Polanski classic

“Forget it, Jake it's Chinatown!”

The most memorable sign-off ever, right? Wrong.

Roman Polanski’s peerless gumshoe mystery actually ends with a testy cop ordering rubberneckers to “get off the street”.

Fortunately that’s one of the few unremarkable lines in Robert Towne’s script, a magnificent dissection of corruption boasting career-best turns from Jack Nicholson, Faye Dunaway and John Huston.

A hurrah too for the ensemble, the likes of Burt Young and weak link in this 1974 masterpiece.


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Neil Smith

Neil Smith is a freelance film critic who has written for several publications, including Total Film. His bylines can be found at the BBC, Film 4 Independent, Uncut Magazine, SFX Magazine, Heat Magazine, Popcorn, and more.