Alex In Wonderland, Donald Sutherland, Federico Fellini, Paul Mazursky

Written by Joe D on December 31st, 2020

After making his big hit film, Bob and Carol and Ted and Alice, Paul Mazursky could make anything he wanted, so he made this crazy film. As Mel Brooks once said, “After a hit, you can film the phone book!” or words to that effect. This film is pretty insane but one of the great things about it is Donald Sutherland visiting Cinecita and seeing Fellini in an editing room, working with a woman editor, who is wearing a glove and splicing, at a CineMonta? editing table. Pretty Cool. The Maestro in action. Check it out

Too Much Sun, Robert Downey Sr & Jr.

Written by Joe D on December 28th, 2020

Here’s a clip from a film I edited for Robert Downey Sr. Downey Jr. is in it along with Ralph Macchio,Eric Idle , Andrea Martin, Alan Arbus, Leo Rossi, James Hong, Jennifer Ruben,and a host of others, including Howard Duff, it was his last film. In this clip you will see Laura Ernst harrassing Downey Junior at the begining. She was a great friend and married to Robert Downey Sr. But here are some funny moments. Enjoy.

Shintaro Katsu- Zatiochi Sings!

Written by Joe D on October 28th, 2020

I bought the Criterion Collection Bluray Zatiochi box set, it is great. I am going to write a piece on it soon, maybe even rate them! In the meantime here is the star of the Zatoichi films, Shintaro Katsu singing Unchain My Heart. He loved to sing, when his brother, Tomisaburo Wakayama, star of LOne Wolf and Cub, sang a song for a Lone Wolf film, Shintaro got angry and told the filmmakers to take it out. I guess he didn’t want his brother straying onto his musical turf. They did not remove the song and you can hear it in the film still. Anyway here is the great Shintaro Katsu singing. Enjoy.

La Camarista

Written by Joe D on September 26th, 2020

 

 

Lila Aviles-Filmmaker

 

Here is a very cool new film that is really worth checking out. La Camarista (The Chambermaid) is the story of a hard working young single mom that works as a chambermaid in an upscale hotel in Mexico. The subtle performances really make this film great, the commentary on the class system, done in a naturalistic almost invisible manner. So well done. Lila Aviles, the director is talented, she is an actress and directs theater and you can tell from the acting. Real characters, no fake stereotypes waltzing around the screen. All The Actors are great especially the title character ,Gabriela Cartol and Teresa Sánchez as Minitoy. Here’s the trailer:

The Man With No Name

Written by Joe D on August 20th, 2020

 

Here is a cool BBC doc on Clint Eastwood from back in 1977. He was the biggest star in the world at that time thanks to the Westerns of Sergio Leone. It’s full of fascinating characters, Paulene Kael basically saying she does not like Clint as an actor or director, the great editor Ferris Webster, the great editor turned director Don Siegal, Sergio Leone, Richard Burton. This is an amazing document. Check it out.

Zbignew Cybulski

Written by Joe D on June 12th, 2020

 

Here’s a newsreel about the great Polish actor, Zbignew Cybulski. Hailed as the Polish Jame Dean his career and life were tragically cut short as he leaped to catch a departing train. ( something I hear he often did) Ironically there is footage of him jumping from a moving train in this piece. I always though he was super cool with his black leather and shades photographed in B&W like the coolest movie icons. Check it out. It’s in Polish with no subtitles but here’s a great reason to learn to speak Polish!

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!

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!