A classics neo noir crime thriller from the 70’s, Chinatown also provided Jack Nicholson with 1 of his best performances as Jake Gittes. Gittes is plunged into a complex web of deceit involving murder, incest and corruption, and in one of the films strongest visual elements, spends the majority of the film with a bandage over his nose after having his nostril slit in a now infamous scene.
The image is a simple portrait of Gittes with the bandage. Nicholson has a expressive face and alot of character in his eyes which contribute to the power of the image. But the image, in it’s simplicity represents the film perfectly thanks to the piercing stare, hat and bandage which is instantly identifiable as ‘Chinatown’.
The ‘frame’ around the picture is similarly used on the original poster, and is used here again as it shares a familiarity with film noir posters of the 40’s and 50’s, which Chinatown is very cleary Roman Polanski’s homage to.