Greatest Film Scenes
and Moments

The Two Jakes (1990)


Written by Tim Dirks

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Movie Title/Year and Scene Descriptions

The Two Jakes (1990)

In the mystery film - a sequel to the original film Chinatown (1974):

  • the scene in which post-war LA private detective J.J. "Jake" Gittes (Jack Nicholson) (specializing in infidelity cases) was startled (he was awakened from sleep when a power blackout ended) when he heard the name of Katherine Mulwray (from a case in his past from the original film Chinatown (1974)) on a tape recording made during a motel tryst in Redondo Beach between unfaithful Kitty Berman (Meg Tilly) and Mark Bodine (John Hackett)
  • "Jake" heard her name in a conversation between the two cheaters just before Bodine was killed by Jake's client
  • the killer - identified as Kitty's jealous husband and as the second "Jake" Berman (Harvey Keitel) from the film's title - the victim's real estate development business partner at B&B Homes!
  • Jake's encounter with emotional, crude and widowed femme fatale Lillian Bodine (Madeleine Stowe) in a pink angora sweater, who frantically protested at first: "Don't make me do it, don't make me do it..." then allowed herself to be seduced in order to hear the tape recording: "Oh, you're gonna make me do it, aren't ya? You're gonna make me!"
  • Jake's tired, bitter response before having sex with Lillian: "Honestly, I'm tryin' to be a gentleman about this. Now just, get down on your knees, stick your ass up in the air, and don't move 'til I tell ya"
  • Jake's violent responses to taunting Detective Lt. Loach (Brian Keith) (the son of the man that had tragically killed Evelyn Mulwray (Faye Dunaway), the mother of Katherine Mulwray and Jake's former lover in the original film) - when Jake forced him to perform fellatio on his cocked gun ("Suck it!"), causing Loach to urinate in his pants
  • the two revelations: (1) Bodine was blackmailing Kitty about her real identity (she was Katherine Mulwray) by forcing her to sign over mineral rights to the land where B&B Homes was building tract homes in a San Fernando Valley subdivision, and (2) Jake was suffering from a terminal illness (of syphilis and cancer) - causing him to blow himself up by lighting a cigarette in the volatile, natural gas-filled environment of the subdivision after a shaky earthquake
  • the closing dialogue between Kitty and Gittes as she left his office: "Katherine!... It [the past] never goes away." (Jake's belated answer to her earlier question: "Does it ever go away, the past?")


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