Snapshots: Little Murders

Donald Sutherland is inspired as the pastor of ‘First Existential’

Feeling empty, or pessimistic, or just tired of the world? Good – I’ve got a great movie for you. And it’s on Youtube for free, so you have no excuse not to watch it. It’s an obscure comedy from 1971 about a nihilist who falls in love gets sucked into a relationship while living in a violence-ridden New York City. The film was actually the directorial debut of Alan Arkin – who, despite a prolific acting career, only directed a handful of other projects. But at least we have this gem.

Elliott Gould, of Ocean’s Eleven fame, plays the apathetic nihilist perfectly, with Marcia Rodd being an excellent foil as his determined lover. Combined with a strong supporting cast and an absurd premise, their ‘romance’ makes for a truly bizarre, jaw-dropping, and laugh-out-loud experience. Everything from Donald Sutherland’s marriage monologue to the gleefully misanthropic finale sets a new bar for what it means to be a ‘dark comedy’. And also did I mention, the entire movie is on Youtube for free. You’ve been warned.