Cutural Impact of The Exorcist

Written by Joe D on April 22nd, 2019

I remember the insanity surrounding the release of The Exorcist. People waited in lines for hours to see any showing, midnight or 10 AM. I heard Warner Brothers had employees, who were heading home for the Holidays, hand carry prints to their local theaters. They were working round the clock to finish the film and make the Christmas Eve release. My pal Bud Smith edited the film, a magnificent job! My other friend, the late, great, Jack Nitzsche recorded special sound effects for the film, that add immensley to the experience. But here is a short documentary on the phenomenon of The Exorcist’s first release.

Sellers and Kubrick

Written by Joe D on April 19th, 2019

Here’s a cool TV documentary about Peter Sellers and his work with Stanley Kubrick. Great Strangelove stories and Weegee Speaks!

Seymour Cassel R.I.P.

Written by Joe D on April 10th, 2019

From Minnie and Mosskowitz

The great actor Seymour Cassel has passed on. I knew him for a long time, we first met when I was editing a film called Mobsters and Seymour played a priest. He was very angry with Chris Penn because Penn had kissed him on the mouth in a scene without telling Seymour he was going to. “You don’t do that to an actor!” I remember him saying. Anyway Seymour was in a lot of films, a whole lot. I was working with Quentin Tarantino and he gave me a copy of a film called Black Oak Conspiracy. Quentin liked this film, I watched it and there was Seymour. Not only is he in it , he’s the hero of the film, he saves the leading man at the end. A while later I was at Trader Vic’s with Seymour and I told him I had seen Black Oak Conspiracy and that he was the hero of the dammed film. He wanted to see it again.I don’t think he had seen it since he acted in it. I looked and looked but couldn’t find the copy of the film. Time passed, I never found it to give to him and I feel bad about that. Now he’s gone but everyone else can see Seymour the hero on YouTube.

Behind The Scenes-The Shining

Written by Joe D on April 10th, 2019

Here is a great look at what went on during the making of Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining. His daughter Vivian had unlimited access and we are lucky that she did. We get to see the master at work. Check it out.

When Herzog Rescued Phoenix

Written by Joe D on April 6th, 2019

Here’s another animation by the genius that did Lynch Meets Lucas, Sascha Ciezata.

Lynch Meetas Lucas

Written by Joe D on April 5th, 2019

 

Check out this great animation while you can

Funeral in Berlin

Written by Joe D on March 27th, 2019

The Spy Who Wore Glasses

Here’s the trailer for a Michael Caine movie: Funeral in Berlin. Follow up to The Ipcress File, Caine’s answer to 007. Featuring the great Oskar Homolka, star of Hitchcock’s Sabotage.

Seconds-Frankenheimer-James Wong Howe

Written by Joe D on March 18th, 2019

 

Last night I had dinner with an old friend, James Hong, we were talking and I mentioned the great camerman James Wong Howe, James Hong told me he was friends with James Wong Howe and what a struggle it was for him to become a cameraman in Hollywood. I was reminded of Seconds, a crazy film Howe shot for the great John Frankenheimer so here is the trailer. Check out Sweet Smell Of Success to see more of the camerwork of the great James Wong Howe.

And here is a little documentary about James Wong Howe

Mike Malloy’s Who Was The Rider On The Rain?

Written by Joe D on March 12th, 2019

Here is a short film by my pal Mike Malloy about a French Actor named Marc Mazza. He appeared in some great European films in the 60’s and 70’s including the magnificent Rider On The Rain by Rene Clement. Mike has really done an in-depth portrait of an almost unknown character actor, Bravo!

Francoise Truffaut’s Two English Girls

Written by Joe D on March 11th, 2019

 

Here is a kind of follow up to Jules and Jim, Truffaut’s earlier masterpiece about a love triangle. This film is also based on a novel and stars the wonderful JeanPierre Leaud, whom Truffaut had discovered as a boy and cast him in The 400 Blows. Truffaut released this film in 1972 but unhappy with the reaction to the film in France, he restored 20 minutes of footage right before he passed away in 1984. The restored version came out posthumously. I think this film is great, understated, poetic, romantic. Check it out, here’s the trailer to whet your appetite.

 

Fred Astaire Dancing at the 1970 Oscars

Written by Joe D on February 28th, 2019

 

I guess I’ve been in the mood for film dancing lately, here is some footage from the 1970 Oscars where Fred Astaire does a number, he was born in 1899 so that would make him 71! You can see semi-bearded Jack Nicholson in the crowd watching, he was nominated for his role in Easy Rider that year. Anyway enjoy!

 

Mabel Lee-Queen of The Soundies

Written by Joe D on February 15th, 2019

The great Mabel Lee has passed on at age 97, she was a great singer, dancer from Harlem. She appeared in many Soundies, short musical films that played in coin operated jukeboxes in cafes and bars. Here’s a classic example. The Chicken Shack Shuffle.

and here is a Soundie Player in action.