The Last Detail Poster

Release Date: March 6th, 1973

DVD Release Date: December 14th, 1999

R|1 hr 45 min

Plot Summary
When sailor Larry Meadows (Randy Quaid) is sentenced to eight years in a New Hampshire prison, Navy lifers Billy Buddusky (Jack Nicholson) and Mule Mulhall (Otis Young) are assigned to escort him there from Virginia. Along the way, they warm up to their prisoner, indulging him in small ways such as making excursions to a brothel, and to his mother's house. As they get closer to their destination, their fondness for Larry makes it harder for them to execute their orders.

Cast: Jack Nicholson, Otis Young, Randy Quaid, Clifton James, Michael Moriarty, Carol Kane, Luana Anders, Kathleen Miller

Director: Hal Ashby

Genres: Comedy drama

Production Co: Acrobat Productions, Columbia Pictures Corporation, Bright-Persky Associates

Keywords: Mother, Prison, Escape, 1970s, Touching, New York City

Ratings & Reviews

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  • The Last Detail is so perfectly tailored to the star that it could’ve been mapped out from a Pythagorean theorem. show more

  • There’s a deep sense of melancholy and finality that runs through The Last Detail even when it’s at its funniest, not just because of Meadows’ fate, but because of Buddusky and Mulhall’s collective guilt for being part of a system that would dole out such a punishment. show more

  • There’s a once-in-a-lifetime feeling to the trio’s every interaction—not only as characters but as performers—that makes the film’s casually tragic climax that much more devastating. show more

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Winner Screenplay
British Academy of Film & Television Arts (1974)
Nominated Film
British Academy of Film & Television Arts (1974)
Nominated Writing (Screenplay - Based on Material From Another Medium)