Sunday, November 20, 2011

Produced and Abandoned #12

Ten more titles that deserve a region 1 release:

1. Autumn Leaves (1958)- I'm still kicking myself after I missed TCM's airing of this late 50's drama starring Cliff Robertson last month following his death. I'm currently working my way through the films of Robert Aldrich, and this is one of the few I haven't seen. I suppose its good to know the film is in circulation now, but a hands-on DVD release would be so much nicer.
2. Four Nights Of A Dreamer (1971)- Slowly but surely, some Robert Bresson is making its way onto DVD, but there are still momentous gaps (i.e. "The Devil Probably" and a good copy of "L'Argent" now OOP). This, his first film of the 70's, sounds especially appealing as a man and woman get to know each other over the course of four nights before her lover returns. Everything I've read classifies "Four Nights Of A Dreamer" as a hugely influential film.
3. Monsignor (1982)- Ok, first off this isn't a very good film- Christopher Reeves plays a priest who breaks pretty much every vow, getting involved with the black market and defiling a nun (Genevie Bujold). Reeves carries the same half-smirk the entire film, but it is respectably helmed by director Frank Perry and the various mumblings between church and mafia loyalty make for some compelling ideas in a low-rent "Godfather" kind of way. And the scene where Reeves and Bujold lock eyes during a large mass procession is quite stirring. Plus, we always need more Frank Perry on video.
4. Quatermass and the Pit (1967)- One of those films that's been on DVD before, ran OOP, was re-released, and now appears to be available through an import Blu-ray. Whatever the status, this late 60's Hammer horror/sci-fi shouldn't be that difficult to see.
5. The Professor aka Il Cammorista (1986)- Ben Gazzara stars as a man who builds a mafia empire from his prison walls and then continues on once he's released. A real oddity here... the film debut of Italian director Giuseppe Tornatore, starring American Gazzara and running 171 minutes! I suppose it was seemingly lost in the shuffle of cheapie 70's and 80's spaghetti action flicks, but it sounds very intriguing.
6. Slither (1973)- Currently on my DVR from its TCM airing last week.... I can't wait to finally see it, plus it always gets kind words from the blogosphere.
7. Malachance (2004)- Debut film from one of the most promising South American directors, Gerardo Naranjo. I'm eagerly awaitng his latest film, Miss Bala" and absolutely love both "Drama/Mex" and "I'm Gonna Explode". His odes to Godard, lovers on the run and eclectic music including Georges Delerue have been lightning bolts of exciting cinema.
8. Lepke (1975)- With Menaham Golan directing, this mid-70's tale of a gangster's rise to power will probably be suspect, but the thought of Tony Curtis starring and my appreciation for the Corman school of mafia tales has me interested.
9. The Midnight Man (1974)- Co directed by Burt Lancaster, how can this synopsis not sound fun: "The Ex-con. The Hippie. The Senator. The Pervert. The Lesbian. The Professor. The Sheriff. The Sadist. One of them is a murderer. All of them make the most fascinating murder mystery in years."
10. Day of the Beast (1996)- From the few Alex de la Iglesia films I've seen, I'm not sure if his zippy, cut-happy efforts are really my cup of tea..... although "The Last Circus" was kinetic and furthered my deep seated fears of clowns. This film, which deals with the possible birth of the devil on Christmas in Madrid, has its cult following.

No comments: