The Last Detail
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Two Navy "lifers" and one military innocent briefly attempt to thumb their nose at Authority in Hal Ashby's The Last Detail (1973). "Badass" Buddusky (Jack Nicholson) and "Mule" Mulhall (Otis Young) are assigned to escort young sailor Meadows (Randy Quaid, who beat out John Travolta for the part) from their Virginia base to a New England military prison, where Meadows will serve an eight-year sentence for attempting to swipe the commander's wife's polio donation can. Buddusky thinks that the sentence is a waste of Meadows' formative years, and he… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 92%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Nicholson's cigar-chomping, profanity-spouting grunt is one of the greatest incarnations of stunted machismo onscreen, and he's brilliantly complemented by Quaid's picture-perfect awkwardness and Young's bracing cynicism."
‑ Keith Uhlich, Time Out New York
"One can't help feeling that the criticism of modern America hits out at all too easy targets in a vague and muffled manner."
‑ Geoff Andrew, Time Out
"Hal Ashby's gritty and profane serio comedy is one of his best films, featuring a towering performance from Jack Nicholson."
‑ Emanuel Levy, EmanuelLevy.Com
"A classic Jack performance."
‑ Beth Accomando,
"Classic Nicholson + classic Robert Towne script = '70s classic"
‑ Carol Cling, Las Vegas Review-Journal
"A tough-talking, sparely directed effort by Hal Ashby, with an immaculate performance by Jack Nicholson."
‑ Don Druker, Chicago Reader
"The Last Detail is one superbly funny, uproariously intelligent performance, plus two others that are very, very good, which are so effectively surrounded by profound bleakness that it seems to be a new kind of anti-comedy."
‑ Vincent Canby, New York Times
"The interaction, dialogue, and parent/child-esque relationships are very well done, if somewhat repetitive."
‑ Gabe Leibowitz,
"Relentless, profane, cynical and bitterly funny, this still ranks among the best work by Nicholson and Ashby. An exhilarating trip from start to finish."
‑ Jon Fortgang, Film4
"Nicholson is outstanding, Quaid is compelling"
‑ Clint Morris, Moviehole
"Salty, bawdy, hilarious and very touching."
‑ Variety Staff, Variety
"The film has an engagingly profane, scruffy looseness, a hallmark of Hal Ashby and Robert Towne's careers, that undermines the conventions of the narrative."
‑ Chuck Bowen, Slant Magazine
"O trio principal, beneficiado pela abordagem quase documental de Ashby, ajuda a construir um filme que conquista pela dinâmica dos personagens e sua camaradagem crescente em um mundo de autoritarismo e injustiças."
‑ Pablo Villaca, Cinema em Cena
"Ashby's direction is superlative, as is his use of music to help secure the mood."
‑ , TV Guide's Movie Guide
"One of the best films of (and about) the 1970s."
‑ Rob Thomas, Capital Times (Madison, WI)
More reviews for The Last Detail on Rotten Tomatoes