Great Stuff on Amazon Prime-Sergio Sollima’s Run Man Run and Chang Cheh’s Sword Stained with Royal Blood

Written by Joe D on June 12th, 2021

Last night I watched parts of both of these great films. We are so lucky to be able to see world cinema like this when we want to. It used to be very hard, you had to wait till a film shoed up at a revival house or on late night TV, then you had to find a video store that rented esoteric cinema. But now you can stream amazing films on Amazon Prime! So Cool. Run Man Run stars ther incredible Tomas Milian as Cuchillo , A Great Film , Check it out.

The Sword Stained With Royal Blood has as a finale one of the most Amazing Fight Scenes in Cinema, watch it and see.

Just make sure it’s the one produced by the Shaw Brothers and directed by Chang Cheh. There are other versions but I have not seen them.

2001 in 4K! Ray Lovejoy vs. Stanley Kubrick and Pablo Ferro

Written by Joe D on June 7th, 2021

I just got the 4K BluRay of Kubrick’s 2001. And I have to say it is stupendous! It looks incredible!

 

Especially the outer space footage. All done with miniatures and opticals and it looks better than what they do today. Why? Great Artisans and great taste! Stanley held everyone to the highest standards and you can tell when you watch the film. Plus shot in 65mm! With great talents like Doug Trumbull and Wally Veevers. Astonishing! The SlitScan sequence and liquid abstractions have never looked better. So cool. I was friends with the great editor Ray lovejoy.

Ray Lovejoy

A really nice super talented guy. He was the assistant editor on Lawrence of Arabia and Dr. Strangelove. 2001 was his first editing job! Talk about starting at the top! He said Stanley was very nice to work with on Dr. Strangelove.

Pablo Ferro

He also said my friend the late great Pablo Ferro drove the English negative cutters and Lab people crazy! They resigned in protest! Pablo was a bit unorthodox but a sweet talented guy. I guess he showed up at the Lab in the middle of the night to make some changes to the title sequence and the lab people had had enough! They resigned! Kubrick (so the legend goes) got an armoured vehicle to transport his precious negative to a new lab! Anyway Ray said that 2001 was such a huge job with opticals being done all over the world, no one optical house could possibly get it done in time, and Kubrick was trying to stay on top of every minute detail. It drove him crazy. Ray said he was never the same after 2001. The giant complicated film took it’s toll on Stanley. Anyway watch the 4K if you are able and be blown away by it’s beauty!

Stanley Kubrick

Alien Influencers Double Bill! It, The Terror from Beyond Space and Mario Bava’s Terrore nello Spazio

Written by Joe D on June 1st, 2021

Hey film programmers listen up. Here’s a great double bill of two very inexpensive sci fi films that definetley influenced Alien. First up the B&W 1958 Classic It, The Terror from Beyond Space!  A monster sneaks in the hold of a space ship and starts killing the crew. This movie scared the heck out of me as a kid. They really make you wait to see the monster and it’s very effective. Alien follows suit. Smart because the monster in both after all is a guy in a rubber suit. I won’t tell you too much about it, watch it and see the parallels for yourself. here’s the trailer

Then we have Mario Bava’s masterful Space Opera, Terrore Nello  Spazio. Released in the USA as Planet Of The Vampires.  The crew lands on a weird planet. They find an ancient Space ship with a dead Alien at the controls. Very similar to ALIEN! But you should watch the movie for yourselves. Here’s the trailer. PS Check out the baddass Italian Leather space uniforms! Super Cool!

The Sunchaser

Written by Joe D on May 27th, 2021

Here is one of my favorite scenes from The Sunchaser, a movie I edited for Michael Cimino. This was the last film I edited on film, in 35mm on a KEM editing machine, with splicing tape! It was a lot of work. But I did get to work with some amazing talents, Woody, Jon Seda, Anne Bancroft, Maurice Jarre, Michael Cimino. PS The whole part of them following the hawk to the sacred mountain was created by me. Wasn’t shot that way or in the script, I did it all in editing.  Thanks to the person who put this clip up, and if any of you are interested in watching the entire movie please make sure to get the Scope version not the square 4X3 that they put out. It’s a totally different experience.

Cry Danger

Written by Joe D on May 25th, 2021

Robert Parrish

Dick Powell and Rhonda Fleming

Here is a supercool film noir, Robert Parrish’s Cry Danger.  It’s worth watching for several reasons, the cast which is great, the locations, including a great trailer park that must have been on Bunker Hill before it was razed. Directed by Robert Parrish, a talented guy who was a child actor in Chaplin films, he wrote a terrific book, Growing Up in Hollwywood that I whole heartedly reccomend. I saw this at a Film Noir festival and Rhonda Fleming was there. I talked to her about this film and we emailed each other. She was real nice. Unfortunately I just read that she passed on in 2020. Farewell! She was 92 I think. Anyway take a trip down Noir Alley into old L.A. and relax.

GBU IN 4K!

Written by Joe D on May 18th, 2021

They have released a new transfer of Sergio Leone’s Masterpiece  The Good, The Bad and the Ugly in 4K! This film deserves it! One of the greatest films ever made. And Ennio Morricone’s magnificent score accompanying these hi rez visuals is a delight for any lover of Cinema. Be sure to pay close attention to the title sequence as this is the best it has ever looked on something you can watch at home. In all honesty some of the exteriors were a bit bright for my taste but you judge for yourself. I did think the final duel was spot on. Really looked great. So here it is from youtube. Check it out.

Monte Hellman

Written by Joe D on May 1st, 2021

 

I just heard Monte Hellman has passed on to the next dimension. God Speed! I met him a few times and he was a very nice guy. One time he hosted a readsing of a script by Dennis Bartok at his Hollywood Hills Home, which was a real nice thing for him to do. I used to know Rudy Wurlitzer, a good friend of Monte’s and the screenwriter of Monte’s seminal Road Movie Two Lane Blacktop. the film that gave Lew Wasserman nightmares. I met Rudy through Bob Downey. When I mentioned Rudy to Monte, he broke out in a smile and said”I talk to him everyday.” Monte, I hope you are happy wherever you are, talking film with the greats up there in Film Heaven. Here’s the trailer for 2LBT

Luis Bunuel

Written by Joe D on April 26th, 2021

Here is a great documentary about the iconoclastic filmmaker Luis Bunuel. A very complicted person and artist. He set out to shock people especially with his first films, Un Chien Andalou and L’Age D’Or. They caused terrific scandals when they premiered. L’Age D’Or was banned, the negative was seized and burned. It only survived because a print was smuggled out of France and buried. Is it still possible to shock people today? Not like it was then. Anyway enjoy this glimpse into Bunuel’s world.

Tangerine Dream, Sorcerer, Wages Of Fear

Written by Joe D on April 5th, 2021

Here is a clip of the great synth band Tangerine Dream playing at Coventry Cathedral. They really made a big impact and did a lot of film scores as well. Including the score for a great film, William Friedkin’s Sorcere. My pal Bud Smith edited the film and also edited the trailer to their music. Sorcerer based on Clouzout’s Wages Of Fear. another great movie worth checking out. Check it out.

Radley Metzger’s The Lickerish Quartet, Music by Stelvio Cipriani

Written by Joe D on April 1st, 2021

 

Here is a scene from The Lickerish Quartet, featuring a score by the great Stelvio Cipriani,what a genius! When I was working with Quentin Tarantino he sent us some autographed CDS of his music. Thanks again Stelvio! Enjoy this time travel to a more innocent sensual universe.

Radley Metzger’s trailer for Ingmar Bergman’s Through a Glass darkly

Written by Joe D on March 31st, 2021

                                                          Radley Metzger with Andy Warhol

I read that Radley Metzger, the director of The Lickerish quartet,Camile 2000,Carmen,Baby and other films got his start in fimmmaking editing trailers. He created trailers for Janus Films, an Art House distributor that handled some of the finest European Films actually some of  the finest films ever made! He said he was particulary pleased when he got word back from Ingmar Bergman that he really liked the trailer Metzger had done for his film,Through a Glass Darkly, as it was a very difficult, complex film. I worked editing trailers in NYC as well but many years after Metzger. Anyway here it is.

The Flesh Eaters vs. Gilligan’s Island and Radley Metzger

Written by Joe D on March 25th, 2021

This is a strange combination but check it out. As a kid I became aware of The Flesh Eaters, first on the cover of Famous Monsters of Filmland.

Then I saw on  Chiller Theater or maybe on Channel 5 late at night. I liked it as a gorey crazy monster movie. A few years later Gilligan’s Island surfaced, there are several aspects of both that are very similar. First off they are both about people stranded on an island as the result of a storm. Both have a Professor, a Movie Star and a Beatnik.

In the case of Gilligan’s Island I’m referring to Gilligan himself. He had just finished portraying the worlds most famous BeatNik, maynard G. Krebs on Dobie Gillis, plus he was a Beatnik in several Beach movies. Anyway maybe Sherwood Schwartz saw Flesh Eaters like I did at midnight on TV and was inspired to make a comedy out of it. Who knows

Interesting side fact, The Flesh Eaters was edited by Radley Metzger, who later went on to fame directing sexy films in Europe, like Camille 2000 and Carmen Baby. These films are great, high production value, great music. Worth checking out.