A Safe Place

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A Safe Place
Film poster
Directed by Henry Jaglom
Produced by Bert Schneider
Written by Henry Jaglom
Starring Tuesday Weld
Jack Nicholson
Orson Welles
Cinematography Richard C. Kratina
Edited by Pieter Bergema
Distributed by Columbia Pictures
Release dates
  • October 15, 1971 (1971-10-15) (New York Film Festival)
Running time
94 minutes
Country United States
Language English

A Safe Place is a 1971 film written and directed by Henry Jaglom and starring Jack Nicholson, Tuesday Weld, Orson Welles and Phil Proctor.


The cast includes:[1]


A young woman, named Noah, lives alone in a small apartment New York City. She is a mentally disturbed flower child, who retreats into her past, yearning for lost innocence. She recalls her childhood, searching for a "safe place." As a child, whose real birth name was Susan, she met a charismatic magician in Central Park who presented her with magical objects: a levitating silver ball, a star ring, and a Noah's ark. In the present day, Noah is currently and romantically involved with two totally different men named Fred and Mitch. Fred is practical, but dull. Mitch is dynamic and sexy, her ideal fantasy partner. Neither man is able to totally fulfill her needs.


The film was "culled from 50 hours of footage."[2]

The work was a product of BBS Productions, a company formed by Bob Rafelson, Bert Schneider, and Steve Blauner, financed by their work on the TV pop group the Monkees. Other BBS films of the era include Easy Rider, Five Easy Pieces, The Last Picture Show, The King of Marvin Gardens, Head and Drive, He Said. All five of these films have been restored and released in DVD versions by The Criterion Collection in a set called America Lost and Found: The BBS Story. [3]


Jaglom recycled a clip of the magician (played by Orson Welles) pulling a cardboard rainbow out of a small yellow box for the logo of his company, Rainbow Releasing, which only appeared on the 1995 film, Last Summer in the Hamptons.


Jaglom's directorial debut was a "critical and box-office disaster"[4] Time magazine called the film "pretentious and confusing", a film that "suggests that the rumors of his expertise were greatly exaggerated, or at least that it does not extend to directing."[5] Vincent Canby described the film as a "superficial case history of a suicide" whose "narrative pretends to be a lot more complex"; the film "reveals the director's apparent adoration of his star [Weld], whom he studies in every possible light and color combination, and in every possible camera setup, often orchestrated with fine, corny songs out of the 1940s and 1950s on the order of Charles Trenet's "La Mer" and "Vous Qui Passez Sans Me Voir."[1] Variety said the film's "deliberate experimentation puts a heavy burden upon the viewer." Its writer-director "has plunged in over his own depth."[6]

See also


  1. 1.0 1.1 Canby, Vincent (October 16, 1971). "Safe Place: Work by Henry Jaglom Stars Tuesday Weld". The New York Times. Retrieved 2012-05-04. 
  2. "Biography: Henry Jaglom". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved 2012-05-04. BBS subsequently produced Jaglom's writing-directing debut, A Safe Place (1971), a spaced-out, 94-minute fantasy culled from 50 hours of footage, causing critics to decry that unorthodox editing had destroyed all sense of time and yielded a confused mess. 
  3. https://www.criterion.com/boxsets/769-america-lost-and-found-the-bbs-story
  4. "A Safe Place: Review". TV Guide. Retrieved 2012-05-04. 
  5. "Cinema: Soggy Daydreams". Time. October 25, 1971. Retrieved 2012-05-04. 
  6. "A Safe Place". Variety. 1971. Retrieved 2012-05-04. 

External links