Nothing Is Invisible

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Posts Tagged ‘1971’

Get Carter – Starring Michael Caine

Posted by the editors on Sunday, 11 December 2011

Get Carter (1971)(DVD) – Directed by Mike Hodges (Pulp (1972), Croupier (1998), I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead (2003)), starring Michael Caine (The Ipcress File (1965), Alfie (1966), Sleuth (1972), Hannah and Her Sisters (1986), The Cider House Rules (1999), Children of Men (2006) and many, many other films) and others.  This excellent and iconic British crime drama in which a London gangster, a magnificent Michael Caine as coldly impassive Jack Carter, investigates his brother’s death, and released in 1971, the same year as The French Connection, another superb example of gritty, bleak and fatalistic neo-realism, is thought to be one of the best British films of all time, and certainly of its genre.  Deceptively simple in its story, and unrelenting in its depiction of virtual soullessness, Get Carter, is full of subtle complications and scathing observations on any number of social issues, from grotesque English class injustice, to hypocritical so-called liberation of women, to the oppressiveness of architecture, just to name a few.  Get Carter is undoubtedly a must-see film (though absolutely not to be confused with the abominable 2001 remake of the same name, starring the dubiously talented Sylvester Stallone).  (PR)  (Note that Caine, as Carter, is reading a Raymond Chandler novel on the train to Newcastle, among other small, sly cinematic inflections.)

See our post on the film I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead, also directed by Mike Hodges, starring Clive Owen, and see our post on the excellent film The French Connection, starring Gene Hackman.

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Straw Dogs

Posted by the editors on Saturday, 17 September 2011

Straw Dogs, directed by Sam Peckinpah, theatrical release poster

Straw Dogs (1971)(DVD) Directed by Sam Peckinpah (Ride the High Country (1962), The Wild Bunch (1969), The Ballad of Cable Hogue (1970), Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid (1973), Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia (1974)), starring Dustin Hoffman (The Graduate (1967), Midnight Cowboy (1969), Rain Man (1988), Perfume: The Story of a Murderer (2006)), Susan George and others.  Despite the controversy surrounding the film at its time of release, focusing on its distinctly ambiguous rape scenes and its violence, Straw Dogs seems relatively tame by current standards.  Hoffman’s portrayal of David Sumner, a rather odiously conflicted American mathematician is on the mark, Susan George is, with dire consequences, and in accordance with Hoffman’s critique of her role, exhibitionistically flirty and an odd match for Hoffman’s character.  Nevertheless, Straw Dogs merits viewing for Peckinpah’s fluidity, as well as its portrayal of personal and cultural vagaries. (PR)

It should be noted that an eponymous remake of the film, directed by Rod Lurie and starring James Marsden and Kate Bosworth was released in the U.S. yesterday. (Straw Dogs, 2011) (read A.O. Scott’s review, “His Credit Cards and Fancy Words Can’t Help Him Here“, in The New York Times)

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Posted by the editors on Friday, 25 March 2011

Klute film poster

Klute (1971) (DVD) Directed by Alan J. Pakula (The Parallax View (1974), All the President’s Men (1976), Sophie’s Choice (1982)), starring Jane Fonda (Barefoot in the Park, (1967),  Barbarella (1968), They Shoot Horses, Don’t They? (1969), Coming Home (1978)) and Donald Sutherland (Don’t Look Now (1973), A Dry White Season (1989), A Time to Kill (1997)), with Roy Scheider (The French Connection (1971), Jaws (1975), and the soon-to-be-released thriller, Iron Cross))Jane Fonda quite deservedly won the Oscar for Best Actress for her performance as the understandably emtionally conflicted upscale call-girl, Bree Daniel, in this excellent thriller, wonderfully, carefully directed by Alan J. Pakula.  Donald Sutherland is also very good as the enigmatic, out-of-down private detective, and Roy Scheider is perfect as the suave and slimy pimp. Michael Small’s music is quite effective, as well. (PR)

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