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Directed by Robert Altman

United States 1970 105 mins.

Following his enormously successful M*A*S*H, Brewster McCloud, with its deliberately faltering beginning and wandering narrative line, took a determinedly different direction. It tells the story of a boy (Bud Cort) who yearns to fly. Hiding out in the Houston Astrodome under the mentorship of a bird woman (Sally Kellerman), he builds a pair of life-size wings. Brewster’s world is disrupted, however, by the arrival of a detective investigating the mystery of several guano-covered corpses. Altman parodies such films as The Birds, Bullitt, and The Wizard of Oz (the Wicked Witch herself, Margaret Hamilton, stars in a minor role), while exploring a young boy’s dreams of freedom and flight in the sociopolitical bounds of Nixon’s America.