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A TALE OF TWO FILMS: THE PICASSO SUMMER (1969)

“Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.” - Pablo Picasso Few films come with a pedigree as spotted as THE PICASSO SUMMER. Some names that were directly or indirectly associated with the movie include artist Pablo Picasso, author Ray Bradbury, French directors Francois Truffaut and Serge Bourguignon, cinematographer Vilmos Zsigmond as well … Continue reading A TALE OF TWO FILMS: THE PICASSO SUMMER (1969)

Remembering Alan Sillitoe: “Don’t Let the Bastards Grind You Down!”

On Saturday, Nov. 19th (and Jan. 17th) TCM will be airing Karel Reisz’ SATURDAY NIGHT AND SUNDAY MORNING (1961). This bleak but beautifully shot kitchen-sink drama features Albert Finney in his screen debut as one of Britain’s original angry young men. The film is based on a novel by the British author Alan Sillitoe who also wrote the screenplay. Alan … Continue reading Remembering Alan Sillitoe: “Don’t Let the Bastards Grind You Down!”

THE MANY ROLES OF MICK JAGGER

“The only performance that makes it…that really makes it…that makes it all the way…is the one that achieves madness.” - Turner aka Mick Jagger in Performance (1970) If someone asked me the proverbial question: “The Beatles or The Rolling Stones?” I’d pledge my allegiance to the bad boys of rock and roll in an instant. The first concert … Continue reading THE MANY ROLES OF MICK JAGGER

HOLIDAY COOKING WITH THE STARS

In October I shared some of Vincent Price’s recipes and cooking tips in a post titled In the Kitchen with Vincent Price and the response was overwhelmingly positive. In celebration of Thanksgiving, I thought I’d share a few holiday recipes from some of Hollywood’s most loved and admired stars. The recipes are variants of traditional dishes and … Continue reading HOLIDAY COOKING WITH THE STARS

THE LIVING AND THE DEAD: L’ECLISSE (1962)

While recently rewatching Michelangelo Antonioni’s L’Eclisse (aka The Eclipse, 1962) I received the sad news that George Romero had died. The celebrated Italian art-house auteur and the American director behind the hugely popular Living Dead franchise aren’t typically associated with one another but I suspect that Antonioni’s work may have inspired Romero early in his career. In The Cinema of George … Continue reading THE LIVING AND THE DEAD: L’ECLISSE (1962)

CRIME & PUNISHMENT: LE CERCLE ROUGE (1970)

August 10, 2017: FilmStruck is currently streaming 11 films featuring Alain Delon as part of their “Icons: Alain Delon” theme and for the next 4 weeks I’ll be spotlighting a few of my favorite titles in this collection. To learn more about the French actor please see a previous post I wrote in 2010 to celebrate … Continue reading CRIME & PUNISHMENT: LE CERCLE ROUGE (1970)

HONOR AMONG THIEVES: FAREWELL, FRIEND (1968)

In the tradition of classic French heist films such as Touchez pas au grisbi (1954), Rififi (1955) and Bob le flambeur (1956), Farewell, Friend (aka Honor Among Thieves, 1968) takes viewers on a treacherous adventure where femme fatales lurk around every shadowy corner and crime rarely pays. But that doesn’t stop some fortune hunters from risking everything to make a quick buck or in … Continue reading HONOR AMONG THIEVES: FAREWELL, FRIEND (1968)

SEDUCED BY PIERRE CLÉMENTI

Listen, Let’s Make Love (Scusi, facciamo l’amore?; 1967) begins with a series of scenic images highlighting the beauty and splendor of Milan, Italy accompanied by one of Ennio Morricone’s most sensual scores. As Edda Dell’Orso seductively moans over the opening credits we’re introduced to Italy’s “moral capital” through the eyes of a young man named Lallo … Continue reading SEDUCED BY PIERRE CLÉMENTI

The Children Are Watching: Ruminations on The Pumpkin Eater (1964)

The term ‘auteur’ is rarely associated with Jack Clayton. When critics and film scholars refer to the British director by name they usually describe him as being a “talented craftsman” or “skilled technician.” Credit for the extraordinary look and feel of Clayton’s best films is typically attributed to the skilled cinematographers (Freddie Francis, Oswald Morris, … Continue reading The Children Are Watching: Ruminations on The Pumpkin Eater (1964)

REIMAGINING A CLASSIC: WERNER HERZOG’S NOSFERATU

We live in the age of remakes and prequels. Every month Hollywood rolls out an easily recognizable title that’s been repackaged and recast with a plot that’s all too familiar. The horror and science fiction genre has been hit the hardest by these reimagined movies that all too often fall extremely short of the original … Continue reading REIMAGINING A CLASSIC: WERNER HERZOG’S NOSFERATU