In 2010, finally seeing feedback on this movie I that i last saw in the theater when it first came out in 1972 ( I was 15, very bright for my age) I just have to make a quick comment on the reviews thus far: I think Reviewer #6 really captured it best, although she might have identified with it a bit too narrowly. Yes, the character portrayed by Diane Keaton was a Special Ed teacher, raised in a strict Catholic home, and grew up feeling like she was defective and ugly as she had been born with Spinobifida and had the trauma of many surgeries, a sheltered childhood with no friends. The surgeries eventually straightened her spine out well enough for her to stand and walk normally. She could have been in any profession, raised in any typically disfunctional family of which there were plenty at the time, and still have found herself in the same situation with the duo personality. She was basically a good and kind person, who had done a lot of reading as she spent so much time alone as a child and teen, who made up for years of feeling like a social outcast by becoming more like her sister (Tuesday Weld) the "Bad Girl" in the family, who was pretty and promiscuous; unlike her sister, she managed to keep that personna separate from her day job, which was only involved her need to, in this case, focus on only what mattered to that job... her students. She truly cared about them and loved what she did for a living. But there are other women who could be in other acceptable positions during the day, and lead completely different lives at night, providing they don't live or play too close to where they work, and don't chance running into the same people. That was still the lesson in the movie, the tragic moral of the story, of the era. In any case, she was brilliant in the role, quite believable, and portrayed a woman that was not that far from many single young women in that era of casual sex during their 20's and 30's ... it was a shocking lesson in what could happen if you led that kind of nightlife, taking home strangers and having sex with people you really didn't know. It was actually amazing that running into an unsavory character had not happened sooner, one that might have not killed her as this troubled young man did, but who would treat her badly and give her pause to give some thought to the danger she was exposing herself to by continuing that lifestyle. She was bright enough to know better, but her rearing had played a major role in her disfunction as an adult... as it had with her sister, who was always pretty, and promiscuous right from the start. At the time I saw the movie I was a virgin (but not a prude, although I would remain chaste for the next several years, nothing to do with religion, just choice) as was my boyfriend, a 16 year old in an all boys Catholic school, and several of his friends and their dates, all the guys and some of the girls in Catholic school, some of the girls like me, Catholic but in Public School in Queens, close to Long Island. I was the ONLY one who thought the movie was brilliantly done, the others all HATED it, and said gee thanks, that's the last time we let YOU choose the movie, as they were so disturbed by it they wanted to leave long before the brutal ending. One couple or two did leave, but the others stayed mainly because my boyfriend was sort of the dominant leader, and I had no desire to leave, so he stayed. The really interesting thing is this movie came out THE EXACT SAME TIME AS ANNIE HALL... AND EVERYONE LOVED AND IDENTIFIED DIANE KEATON WITH ANNIE HALL, and even though Looking for Mr. Goodbar was up for several Oscar Nominations, you never heard a word about it after that, and never saw it repeated on TV or even cable TV, almost like it never existed. All I could think was that Diane Keaton and Richard Gere's press agents somehow had the money or the power to put the kabash on it and bury it so as not to put a blemish on the two rising stars careers. Because most people reacted to it like Reviewer #2... Yes, it had a powerful impact and a powerful message, as you can see, I never forgot it... and it was some of the best acting Diane Keaton EVER did, much better than Annie Hall, much better than REDS which was soo mechanical yet received such acclaim.... it must have been the DIRECTOR and the character and the script that brought out such fine acting on her part in this movie. And the Filming... the Film Director was Outstanding.