NCFD Film: The Silent Partner

March 7th, 2020

Viewable ONLINE April 21 through April 22

For National Canada Film Day this year we’re offering an online film you can book through the NCFD site. The film is free but must be booked to view.

The direct link for the screening is here:   When you go to this link, make sure you scroll down and you will find the “watch” button. 

The Silent Partner is a classic Canadian film featuring a young Elliot Gould and Christopher Plummer with a very minor role from then little known John Candy.

Synopsis: A timid bank teller anticipates a bank robbery and steals the money himself before the crook arrives. When the sadistic crook realizes he’s been fooled, he tracks down the teller and engages him in a cat-and-mouse chase for the cash. 

Director: Daryl Duke

Writers: Curtis Hanson (screenplay by), Anders Bodelsen (based on the novel “Think of a Number”)

Stars: Elliott GouldChristopher PlummerSusannah York  

Watch the trailer here:

REVIEW by Rogers and Ebert

Was it only yesterday that I was complaining about “Love and Bullets,” the terrible Charles Bronson bomb with the incomprehensible plot? Not to keep you too long in suspense: Yes, it was. And after I wrote that review I left the office with a heavy heart, for I knew that I had still another movie to see. It was named “The Silent Partner,” I had heard nothing about it, its star was Elliott Gould (who has not been in a lot of hits lately), and it was about a bank robbery. I would have given you 3-to-1 that it was a dog.

But, not to keep you in suspense, it wasn’t. Along with half a dozen other lonely moviegoers, I was witness to a small miracle: To a thriller that was not only intelligently and well acted and very scary, but also had the most audaciously clockwork plot I’ve seen in a long time. “Silent Partner’s” plot, indeed, has such ironies and reversals and neatly inevitable triple-crosses that it’s worthy of Hitchcock.

The movie stars Gould as a Toronto bank teller who realizes, one day, that the department store Santa Claus outside his bank is acting strangely. “You ever hear of a Santa Claus who didn’t like kids?” he asks someone. They have not. Gould is overwhelmed by a lightning bolt of intuition: Santa is casing the joint in preparation for a holdup. Then Gould is struck by an inspiration: Why can’t he personally steal the money just before he’s held up by Santa? That way Santa gets the blame and Gould gets the fifty grand.

This inspiration is only the opening premise of “Silent Partner,” which drifts into some very deep waters of loyalty, blackmail, eroticism and poetic justice. I won’t describe any more of the plot, which unfolds with a clockwork precision. What’s also fun about the movie, though, is its characters: The bank teller player by Gould, the sadistic robber (Christopher Plummer), the thoroughly confused girl Gould sometimes condescends to seduce (Susannah York), and the beautiful French-Canadian girl (Celine Lomez) who is first Plummer’s lover and then Gould’s accomplice.

The movie tells the story of these people with such convincing and understated detail that the plot, preposterous as it really is, becomes almost convincing. That’s partially the achievement of the director, Daryl Duke, a Canadian veteran of a lot of television and one superb feature film, “Payday,” which starred Rip Torn as a doomed country singer.

Duke obtains the best performance Gould has given in years, he succeeds in making the sometimes bland Christopher Plummer into a figure of pure malevolence, and in casting Celine Lomez as the other girl, he has unleashed upon us a young actress with the erotic impact of, say, the young Irene Papas.

2019-2020 Season

August 10th, 2017

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September 4 – The Biggest Little Farm

October 2 – The Farewell

November 6 – Sometime Always Never

November 20 – Tomorrow Man

January 22 – Parasite

February 5 – And the Birds Rained Down

February 19 – Lighthouse

March 4 – Photograph

April 1 – Hope Gap

April 22 – NCFD free showing: Murmur 4:00 only

May 6 – TBD

There is a blackout period in December and during March break.

A full season pass is only $48 for 8 films. You can order your pass by downloading the form Order form 2019

See here for more information: 2019-2020 Film Series

Film Circuit Supporters

August 12th, 2011

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