Review: ‘Puzzle of a Downfall Child’

Puzzle of a Downfall Child, stars Faye Dunaway as a confused high-fashion model with severe emotional problems, most never resolved. Unfortunately, the film is marked by cinema-verite chic though Dunaway makes the most of a tour-de-force opportunity.

Puzzle of a Downfall Child, stars Faye Dunaway as a confused high-fashion model with severe emotional problems, most never resolved. Unfortunately, the film is marked by cinema-verite chic though Dunaway makes the most of a tour-de-force opportunity.

Plot takes a riches-to-rags course, Dunaway entering as the latest hot model, insecure in frustrating relationships with photographer Barry Primus and well-to-do Roy Scheider. Dunaway tells her story to Primus in flashback in her seacoast cabin refuge from mental breakdown, professional decline and personal unfulfillment.

The character first garners wholesome pity, but the plot development soon banishes her to bathos and finally boredom.

Puzzle of a Downfall Child

Production

Universal. Director Jerry Schatzberg; Producer Paul Newman, John Foreman; Screenplay Adrien Joyce [= Carolyn Eastman]; Camera Adam Holender; Editor Evan Lottman; Music Michael Small; Art Director Richard Bianchi

Crew

(Color) Extract of a review from 1970. Running time: 104 MIN.

With

Faye Dunaway Barry Primus Viveca Lindfors Barry Morse Roy Scheider
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