In a New York City overflowing with muggers, obscene phone callers, and murderous snipers, Elliott Gould plays a nihilistic photographer who finds himself pursued by flighty optimist Marcia Rodd. It’s a black comedy that never winks at the audience despite its ever escalating level of insanity.
Director Alan Arkin elicits outstanding performances from his cast. Gould in particular delivers a deadpan turn that would make Bill Murray proud. But the numerous long take monologues betray the film’s stage origins. Lacking live theater’s intimacy, they drag. A more visual director might have elevated this to a true classic. Given the setting and tone, one pines for Brian De Palma.