Straw Dogs (1971) - News Poster

(1971)

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Gordon Williams obituary

Booker-shortlisted writer whose novel The Siege of Trencher’s Farm was adapted into the controversial Sam Peckinpah film Straw Dogs

In 2003, when the Guardian ran my admiring profile of the writer Gordon Williams, the piece was headed simply Gordon Who? It was a good question, for by the tail-end of his career Williams, who has died aged 83, was an elusive figure, wary of the publicity customarily associated with the literary life.

In his day, on the other hand, he was a versatile and prolific performer in a variety of high-profile genres. Not many Grub Street irregulars can boast, as he was able to do in the half-decade between 1966 and 1971, of having had one novel shortlisted for the Booker prize and another filmed by the Hollywood director Sam Peckinpah while carrying out ghostwriting assignments for an England football captain.

Related: Profile: author Gordon Williams

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See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Film Review: ‘First Kill’

Film Review: ‘First Kill’
Just how many people has “First Kill” star Bruce Willis killed over the course of his career? According to a site called MovieBodyCounts.com (whose statistics look to be about as accurate as a sawed-off shotgun blast), Willis has offed 116 adversaries to date. A more accurate tally is best left to someone with an appetite for action and plenty of free time on their hands — which just so happens to be the kind of person most likely to appreciate another generic collaboration between Willis and director Steven C. Miller (their third, following “Extraction” and “Marauders”).

With little to distinguish this VOD-bound Lionsgate Premiere release from so many straight-to-video thrillers, “First Kill” offers the ever-so-slight novelty of casting Willis as the bad guy. He plays a corrupt rural police chief named Howell, who’s courteous to the locals in small-town Graville, Ohio, but not above murdering them if they get between him and the loot from a recent
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Rod Lurie To Direct Adaption of Jake Tapper’s The Outpost: An Untold Story Of American Valor

Millennium Films announced today that Rod Lurie (Straw Dogs, Nothing but the Truth) has been tapped to direct Paul Tamasy and Eric Johnson’s (The Fighter) adaption of Jake Tapper’s The Outpost: An Untold Story Of American Valor.

Paul Merryman developed the script, which Tamasy and Johnson co-wrote, and will produce alongside Tamasy and Marc Frydman under their Battle Plan Productions banner. Jeffrey Greenstein, Jonathan Yunger, Les Weldon, and Matt O’Toole are also producing for Millennium Films, with John Thompson, Avi Lerner, Trevor Short, and Yariv Lerner executive producing.

Based on CNN news correspondent Jake Tapper’s bestselling book, The Outpost tells the epic true story of the 50 soldiers who battled a force of over 400 Taliban in Northeastern Afghanistan during Operation Enduring Freedom. Originally built to engage the locals in community development projects and help the spread of democracy, Outpost Keating faced a constant threat of being attacked by the Taliban,
See full article at WeAreMovieGeeks.com »

Straw Dogs – The Criterion Collection

Straw Dogs

Blu-ray

Criterion

1971 / 1:85 / Street Date June 27, 2017

Starring: Dustin Hoffman, Susan George

Cinematography: John Coquillon

Film Editors: Paul Davies, Tony Lawson, Roger Spottiswoode

Written by David Zelag Goodman and Sam Peckinpah

Produced by Daniel Melnick

Music: Jerry Fielding

Directed by Sam Peckinpah

Adrift from civilization, an attractive young couple find themselves threatened, assaulted, and eventually compelled to defend themselves in a bloody showdown. That is the basic premise of Sam Peckinpah’s Straw Dogs, released in 1971 and inspired by some of the same movies then crowding the legendary dives of 42nd street. On its surface Straw Dogs is pure exploitation but its lasting power resides in Peckinpah’s transformation of those visceral grindhouse cliches into an appalling examination of human nature.

Straw Dogs begins with the seemingly benign introduction of David Sumner, a young man with an even younger wife, arriving in a tiny hamlet in the north of England,
See full article at Trailers from Hell »

Trevor Reviews Sam Peckinpah’s Straw Dogs [Criterion Blu-Ray Review]

Upon its 1971 release, Sam Peckinpah’s Straw Dogs obviously offended Roger Ebert, who issued a scathing review. Where he found purpose and even poetry in the grisly violence of Peckinpah’s prior film The Wild Bunch, when Peckinpah translated that western violence to a bucolic English village and, more uncomfortably, into the domestic sphere, Ebert drew the line: “Peckinpah’s theories about violence seem to have regressed to a sort of 19th-Century mixture of Kipling and machismo.” Straw Dogs offended many on its release and continues to offend nearly fifty years since, though it has also become a well-regarded, confrontational classic. Even Ebert, in 2011, admitted that “something within me has shifted,” and recognized “how close to home the movie strikes.”

Is this film offensive? Yes! Is it a rich masterpiece worthy of our prolonged estimation, and perhaps even our esteem? Yes! We should be offended by much of what happens and why and how,
See full article at CriterionCast »

Cannes Film Review: ‘The Killing of a Sacred Deer’

Cannes Film Review: ‘The Killing of a Sacred Deer’
In Nara Park, Japan, spotted deer were long believed to possess divine properties. To cause the death of one, even by accident, was a capital offense. Halfway across the world, in ancient Greece, King Agamemnon learned this the hard way, invoking the wrath of the gods for killing one of Artemis’ beloved deer, for which he was obliged to sacrifice his own daughter, Iphigenia. The obvious lesson: Don’t kill deer. But what if the deed is already done? That’s the premise of “Dogtooth” director Yorgos Lanthimos’ latest ruthless allegory, “The Killing of a Sacred Deer,” which has nothing at all to do with wildlife, holy or otherwise — although it does feature two key scenes in which a hunting rifle plays a critical role.

The title is a metaphor, as is the film’s central dramatic predicament (Lanthimos goes out of his way to make sure we understand that,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Criterion Collection Announces July 2017 Additions, Including Tarkovsky’s ‘Stalker’ and Bresson’s ‘L’argent’

Criterion Collection Announces July 2017 Additions, Including Tarkovsky’s ‘Stalker’ and Bresson’s ‘L’argent’
Summer 2017 is shaping up to be quite the exciting season for The Criterion Collection. In May, the library will welcome cult favorite “Ghost World” and recent Palme d’or winner “Dheepan,” while June finds Kenji Mizoguchi’s “Ugetsu,” Hitchcock’s silent classic “The Lodger” and Sam Peckinpah’s controversial “Straw Dogs” joining the club. Criterion has now added its July 2017 additions to their summer slate, and they include movies from auteurs like Tarkovsky, Rossellini and Bresson. Below is the complete list of July additions, with descriptions provided by Criterion.

Read More: The Criterion Collection Announces June Titles: ‘The Marseille Trilogy, ‘They Live by Night,’ ‘The Lodger’ and More

Stalker” (1979) – Available July 18

Andrei Tarkovsky’s final Soviet feature is a metaphysical journey through an enigmatic postapocalyptic landscape, and a rarefied cinematic experience like no other. A hired guide—the Stalker—leads a writer and a scientist into the heart of the Zone,
See full article at Indiewire »

Criterion Now – Episode 13 – Cannes 2017, John Ford, Jerks in Film

This week we get into the gutter with Dave Eves and James Hancock as we play a game about the biggest jerks on film. We also talk about the lineup from Cannes, Michael Ballhaus, John Ford, Sam Peckinpah, and the latest from FilmStruck.

Episode Notes

7:45 – Jerks in Film

22:30 – R.I.P. Michael Ballhaus

26:00 – Cannes 2017

34:30 – Wishlist and Predictions for July Releases

38:30 – Short Takes (Dry Summer, Straw Dogs, Stagecoach)

49:00 – FilmStruck

Episode Links Wrong Reel 230 – Dave Eves and His Criterion Top Five Wrong Reel 249 – Disaster Movies of the 1970s Eclipse Viewer 54 – Duvivier in the 1930s Part One Michael Ballhaus Dies at 81 Cannes 2017 Lineup All of the Films Joining FilmStruck this April Episode Credits Aaron West: Twitter | Website | Letterboxd Dave Eves: Twitter James Hancock: Twitter | Podcast Criterion Now: Twitter Criterion Cast: Facebook | Twitter

Music for the show is from Fatboy Roberts’ Geek Remixed project.
See full article at CriterionCast »

Kaleidoscope launches Terry Marcel sci-fi series 'Dumarest Of Terra'

  • ScreenDaily
Exclusive: Company’s first global foray into TV is for series from British sci-fi writer E.C. Tubb.

Kaleidoscope (Kfd) is to represent world sales on sci-fi TV series Dumarest Of Terra, which will be produced by Terry Marcel (Hawk The Slayer).

The initial series is being planned as a of 10 x 60 minute drama based on the first five books of the Dumarest saga, by British science fiction author, E.C. Tubb.

The book series charts the adventures of protagonist Earl Dumarest, who spends his life searching for clues to the location of his home world, Earth.

Dumarest has traveled so long and so far that he does not know how to return to his home planet and no-one has ever heard of it, other than as a myth or legend

The cult collection, which spanned 33 books written across more than 40 years, was translated into seven languages.

The pilot, The Winds Of Gath, has been written
See full article at ScreenDaily »

The Criterion Collection Announces June Titles: ‘The Marseille Trilogy, ‘They Live by Night,’ ‘The Lodger’ and More

The Criterion Collection Announces June Titles: ‘The Marseille Trilogy, ‘They Live by Night,’ ‘The Lodger’ and More
Marcel Pagnols’ Marseille Trilogy, Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog” and Nicholas Ray’s “They Live by Night” are among the new titles joining the Criterion Collection this June. In addition, Kenji Mizoguchi’s “Ugetsu” and Sam Peckinpah’s “Straw Dogs” are being upgraded in new Blu-ray editions. More information below.

Read More: The Criterion Collection Announces May Titles: ‘Ghost World,’ ‘Dheepan,’ ‘Jeanne Dielman’ and More

Ugetsu

“Having refined his craft in the silent era, Kenji Mizoguchi was an elder statesman of Japanese cinema-fiercely revered by Akira Kurosawa and other younger directors-by the time he made ‘Ugetsu.’ And with this exquisite ghost story, a fatalistic wartime tragedy derived from stories by Akinari Ueda and Guy de Maupassant, he created a touchstone of his art, his long takes and sweeping camera guiding the viewer through a delirious narrative about two villagers whose pursuit of fame and
See full article at Indiewire »

Films from Alfred Hitchcock, Sam Peckinpah & More Coming to The Criterion Collection in June

It’s mid-month, which means it is time for the next line-up for The Criterion Collection. Arriving in June is Sam Pekcinpah‘s controversial Dustin Hoffman-led thriller Straw Dogs, Alfred Hitchcock‘s early silent film The Lodger (which also includes his film from the same year of 1927, Downhill), and perhaps the most substantial release of the month, Marcel Pagnol’s The Marseille Trilogy, featuring Marius, Fanny, and César.

Also in the line-up is is Nicholas Ray‘s directorial debut, the 1948 drama They Live by Night, as well as a Blu-ray upgrade of Kenji Mizoguchi‘s landmark classic Ugetsu, which recently enjoyed a 4K theatrical restoration. Check out all the details on the releases below by clicking the box art.
See full article at The Film Stage »

Time to reappraise Gordon M Williams | Letter

The death of Nicholas Mosley (Obituary, 2 March) leaves Gordon M Williams the only surviving member of the six finalists of the inaugural Booker prize of 1969. Now in his 80s, Gordon Williams is alive and well and living in Hammersmith. His novel, From Scenes Like These, remains a significant novel of the postwar period, while he also wrote the novel on which Sam Peckinpah’s Straw Dogs was loosely based. Walk, Don’t Walk was a lively account of a writer on a Dylan Thomas-like tour of America to promote a novel. With Terry Venables he also created the TV detective Hazell. Might not a feature on him be of wide interest to the readers of the Guardian, as well as being a contribution to the national archive?

David Evans

Exeter

• Join the debate – email guardian.letters@theguardian.com

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See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Review: Sam Peckinpah's "Bring Me The Head Of Alfredo Garcia", Blu-ray Special Edition From Arrow

  • CinemaRetro
By Darren Allison

Attending a film festival in the mid-seventies, Sam Peckinpah was once questioned about how the studios regularly bastardised his vision, his intension and more specifically, if he would ever be able to make a ''pure Peckinpah'' picture. He replied, '’I did 'Alfredo Garcia' and I did it exactly the way I wanted to. Good or bad, like it or not, that was my film.''

The overall narrative for Alfredo Garcia is neither complicated nor convoluted. Warren Oates plays Bennie, a simple pianist residing in a squalid barroom in Mexico. He is approached by two no-nonsense Americans (Robert Webber and Gig Young) who are attempting to track down Alfredo Garcia. The womanising Garcia is the man responsible for the pregnancy of Theresa (Janine Maldonado) the teenage daughter of a powerful Mexican boss El Jefe (Emilio Fernández). In a display of power, El Jefe offers
See full article at CinemaRetro »

Giveaway – Win Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia on Blu-ray

To celebrate the release of Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia – out 23rd January on Blu-ray – we are giving away a copy courtesy of Arrow Video!

Sam Peckinpah’s most personal movie, Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia is often regarded as his last great masterpiece, concluding the period in which he also made The Wild Bunch and Straw Dogs.

Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia is a beautiful and heartbreaking film with astonishing performances from its two leads, Warren Oates and Isela Vega. Their love story plays out against Peckinpah’s trademark violence as they embark on a manhunt in order to make their fortune. Their commitment to their roles never wavers and they bring their characters to life extraordinarily, giving us a glimpse of the underbelly of humanity.

This gripping film is released with a brand new 4K restoration created exclusively for this limited edition Blu-ray,
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

Competition: Win ‘Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia’ on Blu-ray

To celebrate the release of Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia – out 23rd January on Blu-ray – we are giving away a copy courtesy of Arrow Video!

Sam Peckinpah’s most personal movie, Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia is often regarded as his last great masterpiece, concluding the period in which he also made The Wild Bunch and Straw Dogs.

Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia is a beautiful and heartbreaking film with astonishing performances from its two leads, Warren Oates and Isela Vega. Their love story plays out against Peckinpah’s trademark violence as they embark on a manhunt in order to make their fortune. Their commitment to their roles never wavers and they bring their characters to life extraordinarily, giving us a glimpse of the underbelly of humanity.

This gripping film is released with a brand new 4K restoration created exclusively for this limited edition Blu-ray,
See full article at Blogomatic3000 »

Drive-In Dust Offs: Terror Train (1980)

At the turn of the ‘80s, Jamie Lee Curtis was The face of horror; by this point she had already starred in Halloween (1978), and cemented her position with three releases in 1980 alone – The Fog in February, Prom Night in July, and today’s title, Terror Train, in October. It was a banner year for her, and for horror fans alike – well, apart from that snoozy school picture. Terror Train was a great way to end her 1980, and a fitting way to cap off 2016, as it’s a – ta da! – New Year’s Eve movie. Climb aboard for a fun, surprisingly classy ride.

There just aren’t that many horror films that take advantage of the holiday. New Year’s Evil (also 1980) is probably the most well known, and uses the neat conceit of the killer performing a bad deed for every time zone to, sadly, dull effect. Terror Train doesn
See full article at DailyDead »

Peter Vaughan, ‘Game of Thrones’ and ‘Porridge’ Actor, Dies at 93

  • Indiewire
Peter Vaughan, ‘Game of Thrones’ and ‘Porridge’ Actor, Dies at 93
Actor Peter Vaughan, best known for his performances as Maester Aemon on “Game of Thrones” and Harry “Grouty” Grout on the BBC sitcom “Porridge,” has died at the age of 93. According to his agent Sally Long-Innes, Vaughan passed away “at approximately 10:30 this morning” and “died peacefully with his family around him.”

Read More: Review: ‘Game of Thrones’ Season 5 Episode 7 ‘The Gift’ Doesn’t Bounce Back From Last Week’s Trauma

The actor began his career at the Wolverhampton Repertory theater company before joining the army during World War II where he served as an officer in Normandy, Belgium and then later, the Far East. After the war, he returned to the stage where he played a bevy of roles for many years.

His first film performance was in Ralph Thomas’ 1959 film “The 39 Steps,” a loose remake of the Alfred Hitchcock film by the same name, but his first lead
See full article at Indiewire »

R.I.P. Peter Vaughan (1923 – 2016)

British actor Peter Vaughan has passed away aged 93, his agent has revealed today.

Vaughan, who was most recently seen as Maester Aemon Targaryen in HBO’s epic fantasy series Game of Thrones, enjoyed a career dating back to the late 1950s, with memorable roles including Harry Grout in Porridge, Charlie Johnson in Citizen Smith, and Felix Hutchinson in Our Friends in The North, the latter of which saw him nominated for Best Actor at the British Academy Television Awards.

In addition to his small screen work, Vaughan also appeared in a number of feature films, including The Naked Runner, Straw Dogs, Time Bandits, Brazil, The Remains of the Day, Fatherland and Les Miserables.
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

'Game Of Thrones' actor Peter Vaughan dies aged 93

'Game Of Thrones' actor Peter Vaughan dies aged 93
Vaughan was best known for roles in TV series Porridge and Game Of Thrones.

British actor Peter Vaughan, best known for roles in Game of Thrones and Porridge, has died at the age of 93.

Vaughan played Maester Aemon in the HBO series and Grouty in the TV sitcom.

He was BAFTA-nominated for his performance in 1997 BBC series Our Friends In The North.

Movie performances included Brazil, An Ideal Husband and Straw Dogs. His most recent feature work was on 2011 drama Albatross.

Vaughan, whose career spanned more than 60 years, was also known for his work in theatre.
See full article at ScreenDaily »

The Hills Have Eyes

Arrow Video digs its sharp talons into Wes Craven's dirt 'n' Bowie Knife slaughter-fest horror picture, yet another strange travel advisory not to go anywhere, 'cause strangers might be cannibals. But hey, the movie works, and like much of Craven's filmography, it sticks its neck way out into dangerous territory. The Hills Have Eyes Blu-ray Arrow Video (Us) 1977 / Color / 1:85 widescreen / 89 min. / Street Date October 11, 2016 / 39.95 Starring Susan Lanier, Robert Houston, Martin Speer, Dee Wallace, Russ Grieve, John Steadman, Michael Berryman, Virginia Vincent, James Whitworth Cinematography Eric Saarinen Art Direction Robert Burns Film Editor Wes Craven Original Music Don Peake Special Effects Greg Auer, John Frazier Produced by Peter Locke Written and Directed by Wes Craven

Reviewed by Glenn Erickson

With Wes Craven now passed on, we're left with the situation of a modern American horror director with an extremely successful body of work for analysis. Both an educator and a sometime adult filmmaker,
See full article at Trailers from Hell »
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