Swimmer, The (1968)

The Swimmer (1968), directed by Frank Perry.

He appears from nowhere, wearing only swimming trunks late in the season. He's well-known in rich suburbia, kindly and large-hearted. The women seem especially fond of him.

He conceives an eccentric plan: to swim his way home across the county through backyard swimming pools and cocktail parties. He can do it, naming the route after his wife: the "Lucinda River".

It starts well: he has the strength and masculine confidence, but we begin to notice something "off". He seems to have lost a few years, doesn't remember that he is ruined and that his wife and daughters are... gone?

He becomes more troubled as the day proceeds, tired and limping, melancholy after his studly pretensions fail him. We discover his story as he does.

Burt Lancaster is -- unbelievably -- 55 years old here. A fine performance. I know he had it in him but I'm always surprised to see it.

Janice Rule (last seen in 3 Women (1977)) is beautiful in a one-piece bathing suit.

I'd never heard of this before it appeared on an excellent Blu-ray from Grindhouse Releasing. Finely constructed, very moving.