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Starting in the midsixties, radical filmmakers like Robert Altman, Peter Bogdanovich, John Cassavetes, Brian De Palma, and others were being influenced by foreign art films and avant-garde techniques. By the early seventies, these directors had mastered their craft and helped usher in the greatest decade in cinema history. Listed here are the most notable films released in the 1970's.
Anna Christie (1930)
Garbo Speaks and everyone should listen!
The original Anna Christie (1930) English version has the cleaner negative and is a good film but it's the 1931 German language version that is the masterpiece. Filmed right after they finish the 1930 version, on the same stage but with different actors, the story is the same but Greta's performance is so much better. Maybe because it was in her native language, maybe because of the different actors or maybe it was the fact that it was so familiar at that point, never the less, this is the version to see. When Garbo makes her screen entrance in the 1930 version she looks gorgeous but in the 1931 version she looks like death warmed over and hating the world while at the same time looking like she could have been the most beautiful women in the world once in her life. Her best performance in any film.
Paradise Lost 2: Revelations (2000)
The Paradise Lost Trilogy is a great documentary series about three boys who are convicted of murder. All three films seem to be underrated but it's the second film that is the most underrated of them all. Paradise 2 is kind of like watching a train wreck happening and you can't look away. The filmmakers do a great job of showing how a persons bizarre actions and words along with rumors, insinuations and circumstantial evidence can make a person look completely guilty of something when in reality they are innocent. Really makes a person stop and think about how the three boys were convicted by a flawed criminal system.
Man of Steel (2013)
WOW, an action film with tons of CGI!
I had been looking forward to the Man of Steel for a few months and was there for the opening show. After a few days to reflect I have decided that I no longer enjoy films that are loaded with CGI coupled with the complete destruction of New York City. That kind of film has now been done to death! The screenplay was good and the lead actor was really great but the film didn't give us anything new, no "wow" or "that's so cool" moments. The box office sales will be miss leading, the opening weekend will set records but next weekend will tell a different story. I am not saying that Man of Steel was terrible, if you are a teenager you will probably love it, but for me it just didn't live up to what it could have been. The best part about the film was the scenes with Kevin Costner which were few a far between. Overall I give it a 6.5 out of 10 stars. For me, this summers blockbuster was just a summer bust! With that being said, I am looking forward to the next film because Man of Steel does a great job of setting up the sequel and I still have high hopes that a great film can be made.
Still out of print?
I can't figure out why an incredible gritty drama like "Love with the Proper Stranger" (1963) is still out of print. The 50th anniversary of the release of this film is coming up next year, so now would be a great time to release it. There are a lot of people out there that would love to own this film but you can't buy it anywhere at any price. On TCM's website there are over 2630 people who have expressed their interest in seeing this film released on DVD and it is currently ranked #26 on their most asked for list.
The plot of the film: After a one-night stand, Angie (Natalie Wood) finds herself pregnant and she informs Rocky (Steve McQuenn) that she wants an abortion. The big twist: Abortion's are illegal and being performed in back rooms by hacks. The lucky few who have actually seen "Love with the Proper Stranger" would tell you that the cast are at their very best. And yet it's been out of print for over 10 years. I don't get it because the film is very clean and doesn't need a huge overhaul. Just slap it on a disc and put it on the shelves, PLEASE!
Life in a Day (2011)
If you only see one documentary this year...
This film is a lot like Koyaanisqatsi, only Life in a Day also has words to help tell the story. No matter who you are, no matter how much you have traveled, no matter what you have done in your life, there will be something in this film that you have never seen before, probably several things at that.
Not only is it amazing that the entire documentary was filmed by "everyday Joes", the editing is also brilliant. These stories, probably 100 or more, mess together in a perfect fit, like a beautiful puzzle. The music is fantastic, spot on for every scene. And did I mention the tears? If you are not touched by several of these stories, then you are not from this planet.
You can find reviews of this film saying that this is just overrated, like watching someone surf youtube, lots of cell phone filming (which is not the case), the story is just mish-mash and its only about peoples everyday lives, nothing special about that. You should ask yourself two things about these reviewers. Did they submit footage for this project that was not used in the final film and maybe that is why they don't like it? And two, do these people even know a good film when they see one? Do they consider "Transformers" the best movie ever made?
"Life in a Day" gets my highest recommendation, no other film today is higher. I'm not going to say this is the best documentary ever made, it's way to soon for that kind of talk. I'm just going to say that after you see this film, you will highly recommend it to others as well!
Jump Cut (1993)
The single worst movie of all time!
Jump Cut is impossible to watch without falling asleep. If anyone knows of a worse film, please let me know.
Here is my theory on how this film was made:
In 1970, a group of not so intelligent guys had a camera and wanted to make a porn. Without a script, they starting filming all the "acting" parts of the movie. Then they realized that no one was willing to take their cloths off and have sex with them. They soon lost interest in finishing the movie and put the cans of film on a shelf. There the cans sat until 1993 when a man from Jacksonville, Florida found them. He thought he found the missing footage from "Metropolis" and had them transferred to DVD. When the transfer came back, he watch it only to find it wasn't lost footage, it was crap. Feeling bad, he decided the only way to recoup his transferring costs was to released the film "as is" and see if anyone would buy it. He made 10 copies and found 10 suckers to buy them. Since 1993, those 10 copies have gone from person to person, each one watching this horrible film and feeling ripped off and in turn, each person wanting to recoup their loses.
I have one of those copies and I'm willing to stop this terrible chain of reaction by taking my loses ($2) and burning my copy. Anyone else with me? Please make the world a better place by helping me find the rest of the copies out there and destroying them...
Anyway, that's my theory on how this movie came to be!
You can find a list of other movies that I consider terrible at:
Films You Shouldn't Waste Your Time On: http://www.imdb.com/list/11WhyQvJiTk/