Hopscotch (1980)

Genres - Action, Comedy, Spy Film  |   Sub-Genres - Chase Movie, Comedy Thriller, Spy Comedy  |   Release Date - Sep 26, 1980 (USA - Unknown)  |   Run Time - 104 min.  |   Countries - United States   |   MPAA Rating - R
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Hopscotch re-teams Walter Matthau and Glenda Jackson, who had surprisingly demonstrated quite a bit of chemistry in 1978's House Calls, but despite excellent work from Jackson, Hopscotch is clearly Matthau's film all the way. And with good reason -- there are few actors who could pull off the demands of a screenplay which calls for an actor with superb comic timing, a powerful presence that can be expressed both overtly and subtly, an ability to project both guilelessness and intelligence, and an ease in finding reality in artificial circumstances. Matthau shows -- as he did so often -- that "the Matthau type" encompassed much more than Oscar Madison. He is ably supported by a witty and engaging script, and by deft, relaxed direction by Ronald Neame that isn't afraid to dawdle -- or even just pretend that it's dawdling -- as a means of creating suspense. Jackson and the rest of the supporting cast are quite good, and Arthur Ibbetson's cinematography gives the film a sleek feel. Light and breezy, Hopscotch is a pleasant diversion for adults.