March 21, 1971 [Get Carter]

I keep hearing the main theme, electric piano laid on top of harpsichord, a jazz science fiction cool buzz for Get Carter, both a groove and a threat. Jack Carter--Michael Caine with all the Alfie drained out of him--gets on the train to Newcastle, a long way from London; and he eats, he takes his pills, he wipes his spoon clean, he applies his nose drops, he keeps his eyes flat while he reads Farewell, My Lovely--a reliable tip-off: like Marlowe, Carter has his own ideas, and to hell with yours. His brother's dead, his niece--or is it his daughter?--needs attending, more and more as the movie walks with deliberate pace along a sick and inevitable path, justice strong-armed down the brick lanes, all the way to the rough shingle.

And there's pub songs and pop dance numbers, but it's Roy Bud's finger-snapping tune that sticks, that makes any sense with each knife-stick and gunshot and snarl, quick lays and dumped nude corpses syncopated with Caine's dead and crying eyes as he works out an improvised dance, the combo backing Carter, quick with a gun or a fist, unblinking as he dumps in the muddy sea anyone who looks anything like him.


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