A tribute to the detective thriller and all it represented in terms of notions of heroism and possibilities for action—and an elaboration of Roman Polanski’s black thoughts on the absurdity of it all. This stylish 1974 whodunit stars Jack Nicholson (never better) and Faye Dunaway (likewise). A bit abstract, though gorgeously shot (by John Alonzo) and cleverly plotted (by Robert Towne), Polanski’s film suggests that the rules of the game are written in some strange, untranslatable language, and that everyone’s an alien and, ultimately, a victim.