The Swimmer (1968)

2015 #122
Frank Perry | 95 mins | streaming (HD) | 1.85:1 | USA / English | PG / PG

Magnificently strange film about a man (Burt Lancaster) who decides to ‘swim’ home through his friends’ pools. It becomes clear they know something he’s forgotten…

A strange air means this quickly begins to feel like a Twilight Zone-esque mystery, but it’s actually something else entirely… though to reveal too many secrets would spoil it. Lancaster is fantastic as an ultimately complex character, there are good supporting turns, and Frank Perry’s direction is evocative, though Sydney Pollack helmed one vital scene.

Now obscure and consequently tricky to see, The Swimmer is a forgotten gem that’s worth unearthing if the opportunity arises.

4 out of 5

I only know of The Swimmer thanks to the ghost of 82. His appreciation is very much worth a read.

This drabble review is part of the 100 Films Advent Calendar 2015. Read more here.

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