The Arrangement


Action / Drama / Romance

Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Rotten8%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright64%
IMDb Rating6.4103087

car accidentadvertising executive

Plot summary

Uploaded by: FREEMAN


Top cast

Faye Dunaway Photo
Faye Dunaway as Gwen
Kirk Douglas Photo
Kirk Douglas as Eddie Anderson
Michael Murphy Photo
Michael Murphy as Father Draddy
Maureen McCormick Photo
Maureen McCormick as Zephyr Commercial
720p.WEB 1080p.WEB
1.13 GB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
2 hr 5 min
P/S 2 / 1
2.09 GB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
2 hr 5 min
P/S ...

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Bunuel19767 / 10

THE ARRANGEMENT (Elia Kazan, 1969) ***

Adapted by Kazan from his own novel, this ambitious if little-seen (at least in my neck of the woods) character drama emerges as an absorbing and highly personal adult piece, but one which is also pretty heavy-going and somewhat uneven in quality. Still, the director elicits excellent performances from his entire cast (with the star trio baring more than their souls in front of the cameras); Kirk Douglas is particularly impressive in one of his most interesting roles (certainly at this stage of his career, here playing the son of Richard Boone who, in real-life, is actually a year younger than Douglas!)...though Kazan, in his autobiography, seemed unhappy with having to make do with him over his first choice, Marlon Brando. It's strange that he hadn't thought of Douglas immediately to personify his alter ego on screen, since both had been immigrants and the actor would therefore have an instant connection with the character; actually, I feel that Brando's brooding intensity - as opposed to Douglas' dynamic hysterics - would have worn the film down even more than it already is...and, in any case, Marlon got to do his "mid-life crisis act" three years later in LAST TANGO IN Paris (1972)!

What is essentially an old-fashioned melodrama, particularly given the lack of young actors involved, it's brought up-to-date - and, one might say, to life - by a variety of cinematic tricks (which sometimes exasperate the spectator, as if Kazan had gone through one too many viewings of Richard Lester's strikingly similar PETULIA [1968]!): multiple flashbacks and fantasy sequences (Douglas has visions of mistress Faye Dunaway everywhere, and even has her morphing into wife Deborah Kerr during a love scene); we also get visualizations of his interior monologues in which the younger, successful Douglas straightens out his older, bitter self; and, at one point, there's even a fist-fight underscored by cartoon captions a' la the campy 1960s "Batman" TV series!! On the other hand, the film's production values - as is to be expected from a glossy studio product of its time - are tops.

Leonard Maltin strangely rates this one a BOMB in his "Movie Guide"; true, it may not be top-tier Kazan but it's nowhere near as bad as he seems to think it is. Curiously enough, I followed this viewing with the director's subsequent film, THE VISITORS (1972),also awarded the unenviable "bottom-of-the-barrel" accolade from the genial critic...though, in its case, it's a bit more understandable - as can be perceived from my own comments below!

Reviewed by bkoganbing3 / 10

Middle Age Angst

Elia Kazan may have bared his tortured soul in this autobiographical novel, but someone else was needed to bring it to the screen. Then again I'm not sure anyone could have made an entertaining film out of so dislikeable a subject.

The Arrangement is ostensibly Elia Kazan telling his story of his relationship with a tyrannical father which is the root cause of the middle aged angst he now faces. Our protagonist is not a celebrated film director, but Kirk Douglas a rich and successful advertising executive who one fine day decides to go out in the way that Princess Diana did.

It was not as fatal as poor Diana's crash. But all through this film you kind of wish he'd been put out of his misery. This man is selfish beyond all comprehension, narcissistic to the last exponent. Kirk Douglas has played some pretty rotten people on the screen, but even the cold blooded bank-robber/killer he played in his next film, There Was A Crooked Man, had far more going for him than this one.

He's married to Deborah Kerr who was coming up short with decent film roles in the latter part of the Sixties. She's the long suffering wife in this one and initially you feel sorry for her. But after a while I got the impression she was just glorying in her martyrdom as the long suffering wife. Douglas even knocks up his mistress Faye Dunaway and even after she gives birth and the child is thrown in her face, she won't leave him.

What she'd rather do is scheme with family lawyer Hume Cronyn and family doctor Harold Gould to get Douglas sent to the booby hatch. Not that he isn't giving them all plenty of good reason.

Richard Boone is Douglas's father and he blusters and shouts his way through the part the Anthony Quinn does in his more bravura roles. Kazan didn't have a tight rein on the cast. Or perhaps they knew this film was a travesty and each was determined to overact and be noticed the most.

Not the finest hour for all the talented people involved.

Reviewed by TheLittleSongbird3 / 10

An arrangement that has no taste

'The Arrangement' was one of the very few Elia Kazan films to be near-uniformally panned critically when first released at the time. Even the slightly more complimentary reviews were generally mixed at best. Over-time it has garnered more praise with some considering it underrated, and the rather than completely panning the film the critical reception became and still is a little more mixed. Though with a lot of people still disliking it.

Sadly, for me 'The Arrangement' was a real disappointment. Really like to love almost all of Kazan's films and have always admired his direction of actors and how he tackled heavy and still relevant subject (am very big on this by the way, especially recently). It does not give me pleasure criticising 'The Arrangement' and words cannot describe how much there was the want to go against the grain (have been known to),but this just didn't work for me on most levels. To me, it was the film that started Kazan's decline in film quality, one of the few films of his to not feel like a Kazan film and a contender for his worst.

Did think that some of the scenery and art direction were nice and easy on the eyes. The music has well fitting and pleasant moments.

Hume Cronyn at least looks engaged and gives his part some spirit and edge without taking anything to extremes.

It is a shame though that the same cannot be said for the rest of the cast, how Kazan worked so well with actors and had a great reputation as "an actor's director" considered then and now as one of the best at it is not obvious at all here. Evident from how a cast that had talented and experienced performers gave performances that made them look like first timers or actors out of their depth. Cronyn excepted, all are made to either overact (Richard Boone) or look completely detached from the proceedings (Faye Dunaway) and the complete waste of the most experienced person in the cast Deborah Kerr is unforgivable.

Will say that in all fairness they do struggle to do anything with such an over-worked and consequently tired script that lacks any kind of wit or elegance. As well as with very unsympathetic and one-dimensional characters that one doesn't give a toss about. Along with 'The Sea of Grass' and 'The Visitors', 'The Arrangement' is one of the few Kazan to not feel like it was directed by Kazan. His distinctive style is nowhere in sight. The production values are mostly cheap and look like a mix of failed experiments at various techniques camerawork-wise. The music has moments but definitely could have done with a toning down.

Kazan has handled difficult themes (far braver ones than the ones here) with much more taste and sensitivity before, although mid-life crises and infidelity are not out of date today the approach to them are here. This is the sort of execution that would have been out of date in the 50s and actually would have preferred the sophisticated and frothy approach and not the distasteful and over-loud one seen here in 'The Arrangement'. The story is absurd and often very difficult to follow due to being a mess of styles and tone.

Overall, a big disappointment and one of Kazan's few misfires. 3/10

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