Jennifer Jason Leigh is fast-talking dame Blondie O’Hara, a platinum-blonde telegraph operator emulating Kansas City native Jean Harlow. When her petty thief husband (Dermot Mulroney) is kidnapped after holding up the client of local black mob leader Seldom Seen (Harry Belafonte), she determines to secure his release by in turn kidnapping the wife (Miranda Richardson) of a politician. At 71, Robert Altman returned to the place of his childhood, Kansas City, Missouri, to assemble an ensemble band with some of the best modern jazz musicians (Craig Handy, Geri Allen, and James Carter), performing against a backdrop of race, class and politics, and the tensions that converge on election day in 1943. – Malin Kan
Celebrated American filmmaker Robert Altman (1925-2006) began his career in television in the early 1950s before achieving success in film with 1970's M*A*S*H. He landed another major triumph with 1975's panoramic American satire NASHVILLE and continued directing until 2006, when his last film, A PRAIRIE HOME COMPANION, was released just months before his death at the age of 81.