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California Split []



George Segal and Elliott Gould star in California Split, my all time favorite Robert Altman film and one of the best from the 1970’s. This dark, buddy comedy is centered around Bill Denny & Charlie Waters, two men who get sucked into the world of gambling. After Bill falls deep in debt to his bookie, he sells off several possessions so he and Charlie can make an all-in trek to Reno.  They eventually find themselves in a tacky casino and in a dramatic, high stakes poker match.

Segal and Gould are the ultimate on screen duo with a perfect comedic volley and excellent chemistry. Additionally, this 1974 movie comes in when Altman was on top of his creative game. The director’s signature usage of wide range audio recording gives the picture an incredible depth and a real sense of place. The conversations from the extras and bit characters are always audible and usually rather interesting.

Ultimately, the story of California Split asks, does money really equal happiness?

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