California Split
California Split (1974)

With a free-flowing storyline, much improvisation, and a multi-channel soundtrack, filmmaker Robert Altman creates a challenging, not always successful portrait of two different gamblers united by their compulsion for gaming. Much of the… More

Directed By:
Rated: R
Running Time:
Release Date: August 7, 1974
DVD Release Date: November 2, 2004
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Critic Score: 93% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Alan Scherstuhl
Village Voice

California Split has never been heralded as one of the key Altmans. But the few things it does - friendship and disappointment and the drab and desperate thrill of the gambler's life - it does superbly.

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Variety Staff

The film is technically and physically handsome, all the more so for being mostly location work, but lacks a cohesive and reinforced sense of story direction.

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Dan Jardine

The Odd Couple of poker films

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Michael Atkinson
Village Voice

Sold as a comedy, the film scans more like American-century Dostoyevsky, with comp cocktails.

Joshua Rothkopf
Time Out

Altman feels rather than thinks his way into a subject, with a special interest in how people relate to one another in moments of crisis.

Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Funny as hell.

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Don Druker
Chicago Reader

Robert Altman's masterful 1974 study of the psychology of the compulsive gambler.

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Vincent Canby
New York Times

A fascinating, vivid movie, not quite comparable to any other movie that I can immediately think of. Nor is it easily categorized.

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Fernando F. Croce

Nothing enhances Altman's visual-aural density like the bustle of poker circles, race tracks, boxing rings

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More reviews for California Split

Flixster Audience Score: 84% Flixster User Reviews
Bob Stinson
Ultimate Altman?
Stella Dallas
a stellar tragicomic buddy film about compulsive gamblers. extremely natural, even by altman standards. elliott gould at his manic peak
Graham Jones
Altman's hilarious look at compulsive gambling is perhaps his most underrated film.
Ken Stachnik
Near perfect Altman, Segal and Gould are on fire in this small time gambler character comedy.
Pierluigi Puccini
An amusing and completely uncategorizable film that captures the mood of its period, an atmosphere long gone by now where the low life and unstable compulsive… More
Michael S
Altman's most underrated film!