Ernie Kovacs and Barbara Loden

Written by Joe D on July 20th, 2019

Here is the great Barbara Loden, writer,star, and director of the wonderful film Wanda, playing the scantily clad sidekick to Ernie Kovacs magician. Loden said Ernie Kovacs took pity on her and hired her over the objections of a producer. Enjoy the shtick.

Richard Harrison-Man Of Spaghetti Westerns!

Written by Joe D on July 14th, 2019

My friend Eric put together this short film about the Spaghetti Western career of Richard Harrison, a veteran of over 100 Italian Horse operas, check it out.

Wanda

Written by Joe D on June 8th, 2019

Here is the trailer from a cool independent film made by Barbara Loden in 1970. An amazing film, sort of a feminist Cassavettes trip. Great acting and an incredibly tense bank robbery made on a shoestring budget. Impressive. At one point Wanda the main character goes to a Spanish language movie theater and there is a poster for a film I love, The Brainiac, a Mexican Horror Film. Also you see billboards for TastyKakes, an East Coast delicacy of my childhood. Watch this film and be prepared to be blown away. Actually this is the whole film with Portuguese subtitles.

The Hustler

Written by Joe D on May 30th, 2019

Here’s the trailer for Robert Rossen’s The Hustler, great script, great directing, great acting, great cinematography by Eugene Schufftan and great editing by Dede Allen. Watch the whole movie and dig it!

 

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.

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.

 

Lee Chang Dong’s Burning

Written by Joe D on February 4th, 2019

This is a great film, the story is simple, almost a genre detective structure but the nuances of character, class, Korean life, and memory weave a complex web that is fascinating and will stay with you for a long time after the film ends. You probably will want to watch it again and catch all the clues, I love films that don’t explain everything,that don’t spell everything out for the audience. Because mystery is a wonderful element in any artistic creation and the filmmaker that explains everything disrespects the intelligence of the audience. The characters are wonderfully drawn out, especially our three main ones, Jong-seo Jun plays Shin Hai-me, a young girls so full of curiosity about life, so charming, she’s like your first love, the cool girl you met in college.

Ah-in yoo plays  Lee jong-su, our hero, a would be writer, a kind of normal everyman with a deep soul, smarter than he seems at first glance, a young man pushed to the brink.

Steven Yeun is Ben, a rich sociopath, everything in life is a game to him.

I don’t want to say too much about this terrific film, just watch it for yourself. I guarantee it will affect you and make you think.  This is Cinema.