George Stevens Footage of Germany at the end of WWII

Written by Joe D on May 26th, 2020

Prepare to have your  mind blown. This footage is so incredible, it’s like going into a dream. Amazing. Shot on film, restored by a German Archive. Check it out.

Silent Hollywood

Written by Joe D on May 16th, 2020

Here is a great BBC produced series about the early days of the Movie Business and how it wound up in Hollywood USA. Great interviews with the real Silent Movie people done back in the late 60’s I’d guess. Narrated by the great James Mason who in real life bought Buster Keaton’s old house and lived there for a while. Anyway it’s a great series chock full of amazing information and fascinating characters. Check it out!

 

The Prisoner!

Written by Joe D on April 22nd, 2020

I loved this show, so weird , so cool! I didn’t know Patrick McGoohan was so uptight when he made it. I guess he had a lot on his plate, but watch the doc about the show to get the inside dope. I think they waited for McGoohan to pass on befgore they dished the dirt about him. I still think it’s a great amazing TV show, one of the best of all time. Check it out.

Here’s a rare interview with McGoohan

And here’s a sample of the show from the BluRay release. I recommend it! Looks beautiful!

I guess you’ll have to copy and paste the URLs to see the clips.

Alexander Hackenschmied Maya Deren Meshes Of The Afternoon

Written by Joe D on April 9th, 2020

 

 

 

I just watched the classic short film, Meshes Of The Afternoon by Alexander Hackenschmied and Maya Deren. Usually credit is given the other way around with Maya Deren getting top billing, maybe she deserves it. But I wanted to give Alexander Hackenschmied (Americanized to Hammid) his due. He was a filmmaker when the two of them got together to make this film in wartime Los Angeles. Deren had no film experience, He gave her the name Maya when the two of them got together in NYC. She was a  talented dancer, you can see for yourselves how she moves in Meshes… And it was  groundbreaking to have a woman star in and be co-creator of this amazing film. I would love to find the location where they shot this, it looks like it’s in Silverlake or the Hollywood Hills. Also it does bear some resemblance to Alexander’s earlier film Aimless Walk. Where the main characvter catches sight of himself walking away, a kind of Moebius Strip of reality. A very influential visual concept that has been repeated countles times since. Check out Mario Bava’s Kill Baby Kill (Operazione Paura) . Hammid was maybe the father of Underground filmmaking here in the USA, or at least one of them. He worked on a film for the World’s Fair in NY, To Be Alive, Bob Downey had a job at the Worlds Fair, so probably did a lot of up and coming filmmakers. Meshes.. was shown at Universities all over America. Maya Deren was beautiful, there is a classic shot of her from the film. Looking out a window, it’s only on screen for a few seconds but it stays with you. Just like a lot of things in this film. Anyway here they are thanks to YouTiube, watch them and judge for yourself.

For some reason I couldn’t copy Aimless Walk but you can see it on YouTube. So here’s a cool doc that talks about Alexander.

 

UN COMISAR ACUZA

Written by Joe D on April 7th, 2020

Here is a very cool period piece about Fascists in Romania at the outset of WWII. It is a straight ahead supercool, incorruptible hero versus black leather clad proto- Nazi killers.  Great action, great locations, amazing stunts! That’s what made me want to watch it, an incredible stunt, where The Inspector jumps from ledge to ledge outside a building to thwart the Legionaires trying to snuff him. So Cool! A cop guarding the hero of The Whistlers was watching this scene in that movie and when I saw the clip I knew I had to watch it. So I did thanks to YouTube and it looks pretty good as well. I did a little research, the movie is directed by and stars Sergiu Nicolaescu. And I swear he does some of his own stunts! That takes balls, to have the director and star jumping off a 4th story ledge! No wires involved! It’s based on a true story about a massacre by Legionaires at a prison, the leadert of the Fascist Iron Guard was a criminal named Paraipan (Gheorghe Dinica). This reminds me of  Jose Giovanni, part of a criminal gang that collaborated with the Nazi occupiers of France, just to extort money from Jewish business men. Giovanni was sentenced to death but got out through his father efforts, he changed his name from Joseph Damiani to Jose Giovanni and became a prolific Crime Writer, Film Director, hobnobbing with all the Luminaries of the French Film Industry. Anyway check out An Inspector Accuses! You won’t regret it! I for one am going to watch more of Sergiu Nicolaescu’s films, they kick ass!

The Whistlers by Corneliu Porumboiu

Written by Joe D on April 6th, 2020

Here is a film worth watching, if you love Cinema. It has great acting, a clever script, looks beautiful, great editing, really interesting locations, and cool music. The thing that makes it stand out to me is what we don’t see, it just cuts from one idea to another, no boring explaining, (usually a sign of an insecure producer) no unnecessary elements that are not needed. The way this story is told is so cinematic, so artistic in it’s unfolding, I didn’t even care about the McGuffin, a bunch of money stuffed in some mattresses. It kept my attention though arabesques of creativity, to me that’s a great work of art. It can be in a genre subject, a detective story, but if it’s told in such a great way, Bravo! This is why I love the Coffin Ed /Gravedigger Jones novels of Chester Himes. They are like the solos of a genius jazz musician, flights of scintillating creativity. So Hats Off to  , you are a Cinematic Genius!

Adam Beckett’s Flesh Flows

Written by Joe D on April 4th, 2020

Here is an animated short film by the late great Adam Beckett. I saw this at the Whitney Museum of American Art in 1974. It blew my mind. What a great talent, such a sin that he died so young, just after he worked on Star Wars. An early alumnus of CalArts, the great experimental art school that’s now in Canyon Country, although I believe Beckett started there when it was in LA at a closed Catholic school. Anyway check out this genius of the elaborated loop, hand drawn, optical printed, super Cool

Theremin!

Written by Joe D on March 3rd, 2020

Here’s the trailer for a cool movie about Leon Theremin, Russian inventor It’s a great story, check it out.

Alexander Ptushko’s Ilya Muramets

Written by Joe D on February 17th, 2020

Here is the edited version of Ptushko’s great Ilya Muramets, cut down and dubbed by Roger Corman, released in the USA as The Sword and The Dragon A lot of cool foreign films were acquired by American International and other distributor, recut, dubbed and shown at Theaters, mainly to kids. You cans the original Cinemascope version on dvd.

Karel Zeman’s On The Comet

Written by Joe D on December 29th, 2019

Here is a condensed version of a film by the great Czech animator Karel Zeman. Joseph E. Levine bought the rights to Zeman’s Fabulous World Of Jules Verne in the early 60’s and released it in the US, exposing millions of American kids to it’s magic. See it in Mystimation! A roto-gravure effect where lines were added to images imitating illustrations from the 1800s. Hers’s the American trailer and a documentary on Zeman. Enjoy!

More Fim Noir! Pitfall by Andre de Toth

Written by Joe D on December 13th, 2019

Here is an amazing Film Noir by the supremely talented one-eyed Hungarian director Andre de Toth. Onc again theat femme fatale Lizabeth Scott appears in all her ice cold blonde glory. See Dick Powell, star of Murder My Sweet as the chump who takes a wrong turn down a dirty alley and bumps into the evil Raymond Burr. Check out All- American wife Jane Wyatt, what a babe! Pre Father Knows Best and brilliant. And then just to wet your whistle for another great de Toth Noir, the trailer for CrimeWave.

Blonde Ice

Written by Joe D on December 4th, 2019

Here is a film noir I ran across on YouTube. Featuring an ice cold blonde Femme Fatale. Talk about Evil, she takes the Devils Food Cake! Check it out! Would make a great double bill with the Ultra Sleazy, Too Late For Tears, See Dan Duryea out slimed by a super bad Lizbeth Scott!