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Everything you need to make it here is in that machine. Opportunity. Security. Self respect.
[showing his jacket's back]
One day you may be wearing these insignia. And that's democracy in action.
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This is the film that Roger Corman says was his final straw with AIP. After mildly editing WILD ANGELS and THE TRIP, their virtual elimination of "God" and the obliteration of the original ending led him to form New World Pictures.
Seeing this film at the American Cinemateque in a striking new print shows both its virtues as a one-of-a-kind (well, at least for anybody BUT Corman!) oddity as well as a failed attempt at counter-culture comedy. It's hard to see how even the original Director's Cut (if it exists at all) would really be that much of an improvement. What is on the screen is still probably about 90% of what Corman shot, and it's a scattershot affair. The Cinematography and Music stand out, as well as bits of the acting, particularly by Elaine Giftos.
Roger Corman spoke after the Cinemateque screening.
Corman said that he hadn't seen the movie since its release in 1970. It was edited before its theatrical release by AIP. Most significantly was the almost complete elimination of the voice of "God". Corman speculated that since AIP had gone public (stock market) around that time, that they were concerned that the "Jewish comic"-type voice would be considered sacriligious! Then, AIP cut the most elaborate shot in the entire film. The original ending! Elaine Giftos and Robert Corff were to "walk off into the sunset in the most cliched ending possible." This was shot in a big panaroma shot "with marching bands and the whole cast included." Corman said that it STILL bothers him that as released, the film "has no ending."
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