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7/22/18 Episode 111: Psych-Out (1968)

Listen to the Let's Watch A Full-Length Movie on YouTube podcast and watch Psyche-Out (1989), embedded above, at the same time. Start with the podcast. Click here to launch the podcast in separate browser tab.

Psych-Out (1968) sells out the hippies with this limp love triangle melodrama from Dick Clark Productions. Jenny (Susan Strasberg) arrives to the Upper Haight and falls for both boorish rocker Stoney (Jack Nicholson) and chill Dave (Dean Stockwell, killing it). At the end, she psyches out on LSD and wanders across the Golden Gate Bridge, like deer. Dave sacrifices himself to save her, and she's stuck with Stoney.

Nicholson plays Stoney like such an asshole, too. In an early scene in a hippie diner, Stoney "proves" to fellow band-mate Elwood (Max Julien) that Jenny is deaf by covering his mouth while talking towards her. He also makes an off-color joke to Elwood that falls very flat (I first heard that as a sample).

Director Henry Jalgom appears in Psych-Out as a hippie freaking out on acid. Notably absent, however, is director Roger Corman, whose earlier film The Trip (1967) was also about acid and starred Strasberg, with Nicholson as screenwriter. Ripping off hippies and Corman? What's up with that, Dick Clark?

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