Jack Nicholson in a blue shirt an black sunglasses, on an outdoor background
Marc-Andreas Calanches, Warwick Business School, The University of Warwick

Student Ambassador Review: Film Talk - The Life and Career of Jack Nicholson

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A four and a half hour Film Talk looking at The Life and Career of Jack Nicholson.

The morning presentation gave the audience a certain grasp over who Jack Nicholson was as a person, prior to becoming the famous actor we all know today. Seeing how his private and professional personas co-existed and nourished each other, to let have only one persona by the end, was interesting. More surprisingly, we were told that he almost became a screenwriter instead of an actor, even though this seems inconceivable.

Something’s Gotta Give was a nice, rather unexpected, choice of film for the afternoon screening, as when you think of a Jack Nicholson film, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest would most likely be what comes first to your mind. In addition to being a surprising choice, it also gave an insight into parts of his persona in his later years. At points during the film it looked like he wasn’t necessarily acting, but perhaps just being himself. And this why this film is a good representation of how his work as an actor and his “real-life” personality really came together as time moved on.

But perhaps the most interesting part of the show was the Q&A, with the audience and film programmer engaging in a live conversation, sharing ideas, sometimes opposing ones, on this particular film, other films starring Jack Nicholson, as well as his performance in The Shining, just to cite a few. Film Talk: The Life and Career of Jack Nicholson was a glance into who Jack Nicholson was, or at least what he showed.

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