Catch-22

Film
Faced with the impossibility of filming Joseph Heller's marvellous novel (the ultimate World War II purgatorio), Nichols simply arranges a series of brilliantly funny set pieces around the recurring nightmare that haunts Yossarian (Arkin), the bomber pilot determined to fly no more missions because everyone is trying to murder him out there. Though the vertiginously absurdist logic of the book is hopelessly fractured, some of it does filter through (the mostly superb performances are a great help). Nichols unfortunately grafts on a Meaningful Statement by way of a ponderous Fellini-ish sequence in which Yossarian, on leave in Rome, finds himself wandering the seventh circle of hell.

By: TM

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