The late Robert Altman was a maverick filmmaker whose greatest films featured large casts, overlapping dialogue and strong soundtracks to portray American cities. Nashville (1975) and Short Cuts (1993) captured the essence of Nashville and Los Angeles, respectively. The same can be said about the film Altman made about his home town, Kansas City. It’s a film about politics, power, race and corruption, set to a thrilling soundtrack.

The plot of Kansas City turns on gangsters — specifically, Seldom Seen, kingpin of KC’s black underworld, played by Harry Belafonte with an intense, angry power. His headquarters is the Hey Hey club, from which he runs his nightclub, taxis and less savoury businesses.

The film also stars Michael Murphy as a prominent advisor to FDR (the film is set on the eve of Election Day, 1934), Miranda Richardson as his wife, Jennifer Jason Leigh as the girlfriend of a low-end hood, and Dermot Mulroney as said hood, who makes the mistake of hijacking a passenger in one of Seldom’s cabs, who was on his way to gamble heavily at the Hey Hey. I’ll leave a blow-by-blow recounting of the plot to the many online reviews that lay it out, but suffice to say that there’s enough plot and action to more than satisfy fans of the genre.