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No Subtitles Necessary: Laszlo & Vilmos (2008)

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The lifelong friendship of the great cinematographers Laszlo Kovacs and Vilmos Zsigmond and their impact on American cinema.

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The artistry, triumph and lifelong friendship of the great cinematographers Laszlo Kovacs and Vilmos Zsigmond. With film school equipment, they shoot the Soviet crackdown of the 1956 Hungarian Revolution. As refugees they struggle in Hollywood, finally breaking into the mainstream with their pivotal contribution to the "American New Wave." Written by Director

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11 January 2009 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Laszlo & Vilmos: The Story of Two Refugees Who Changed the Look of American Cinema  »

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(Buenos Aires Festival Internacional de Cine Independiente)

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Features Five Easy Pieces (1970) See more »

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Strange Things Are Happening Every Day
Written by Sister Rosetta Tharpe
Published by Regent Music Corp. (BMI)
Performed by Fern Jones
Courtesy of Numero Group
By arrangement with Bank Robber Music
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Brothers come to Hollywood, Success story... doc
21 February 2014 | by (southwest US) – See all my reviews

'No Subtitles Necessary - Laszlo & Vilmos" opens with various television and movie stars talking about special effects and how those FX affected them. Sadly, they don't show us the names of the stars, for the first few minutes. I'm pretty well educated, and I didn't know who the ##$$ some of them are. I know the name of this thing is "No subtitles necessary".. but they actually WERE necessary, or at least captions telling us who those people were. Later on, they do show captions under the speakers, but they should have been there right from the beginning. Comments by Sharon Stone, Peter Bogdanovich, Peter Fonda, Dennis Hopper, Karen Black, so many more. All folks they had worked with in films.

The brothers tell the story of how they escaped the Hungarian invasion, bringing footage with them across the border. Ending up in Hollywood, we hear how they got started making their own films, being their own crew, and just making films. They went on to help make BIG, BIG films... Easy Rider, Close Encounters, Paper Moon, working with the biggies along the way. Pretty entertaining stuff. And we get to hear some fun stories about working on location, what worked and what did not. I was also introduced to some really cool films that I had not seen before; I will try to catch these on Turner Classics... Winter Kills, Scarecrow. Definitely worth watching, if you can catch it.

As I write this in February of 2014, Vilmos Zsigmond is still with us, but László Kovács died in July of 2007.


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