Its time to say goodbye to the Ultimate 70s Blogathon. Drew took care of the conclusion post where he recapped all the entries we had and the participants who joined us. Head over to check it out at Drew’s Movie Reviews!
Hello, friends! I hope you’ve enjoyed the last three weeks as much as I have. Kim and I have had a blast sharing everyone’s reviews of their favorite 70s flicks. There have been a wide range of films reviewed and if you missed any of them, here they are:
Its time for the finale posts for myself and Drew. Earlier today, I posted up Drew’s final review of Dirty Harry. Meanwhile, he posted my final post which was a Disney double feature for The Aristocats (1970) and Pete’s Dragon (1977). Head over to Drew’s to check it out!
I come bearing some sad news: today is the final day of the Ultimate 70s Blogathon. But don’t fret, we had a good run. Earlier, Kim shared my review of Dirty Harry, my second and final review of the blogathon. Now it’s my turn to share Kim’s closing reviews. Every Ultimate Decades Blogathon we’ve hosted, Kim has included some sort of look at some of the Disney feature films to come out that decade. This blogathon is no different. She’s wrapping up this blogathon with reviews of The Aristocats and Pete’s Dragon.
The 1970s for Disney was a pretty solid decade filled with titles like Bedknobs and Broomsticks, Robin Hood and The Rescuers along with today’s double feature, The Aristocats and Pete’s Dragon. To celebrate the 70s, I decided to choose one of my favorite Disney films, The Aristocats which I’ve seen many times over and might explain…
Time sure flies by when we’re having fun! After 3 weeks of entries, we have reached the final day of the blogathon. We always swap things around for the final wrap-up day so today, over here, I’ll be sharing my darling co-host Drew‘s final review with his thoughts on 1971’s action thriller Dirty Harry which brings in a much needed mention of Clint Eastwood. Of course, you will find my review over on his blog some time today. First, let’s check out what makes Dirty Harry his choice for the Ultimate 70s Blogathon!
When a killer calling himself ‘Scorpio’ (Andrew Robinson) begins terrorizing San Francisco, Inspector Harry Callahan (Clint Eastwood) must bring him to justice.
Clint Eastwood is a household name. To older audiences, he’s an action star. To younger audiences, he’s an award-winning director. In either case, it is hard to find an actor whose career is as prolific or diverse as Eastwood’s. In the early 1970s, he was transitioning from his western roles to more modern day ones. That transition began with Dirty Harry.
Many action movies tend to forego character development to instead focus on the big action pieces. Dirty Harry isn’t much of an exception but just barely. Throughout the film, we learn little bits and pieces about Harry’s past and character traits. We get just enough character development to get a deeper understanding of who Harry is. This was a great move on the writers’ part because since this is the first installment with Harry, there shouldn’t be too much focus on what’s beneath the surface. But at the same time, the small bits that were laid out can be picked up in future sequels without taking away from this film.
For most of the movie, Harry spends his time hunting down the killer going by ‘Scorpio.’ However, Scorpio is not Harry’s greatest adversary of the film: it’s the law. Throughout the movie, Harry tries to bring Scorpio to justice. However, Harry learns that ‘the law’ and ‘justice’ are not always the same thing. It’s an interesting concept to think about and one that frustrates Harry continuously throughout the film.
Eastwood’s background in westerns transfers well into a modern setting. Harry could be seen as a Man with No Name or Josey Wales in an urban setting; An urban cowboy, if you will. Harry’s introduction is one of my favorites in cinema. When he casually walks up to a bank robbery, takes out several of the robbers and delivers his famous lines is absolutely spin-tingling. You know right away the kind of character Harry is.
This also leads into one of the flaws I see in the film. For an action movie, it is unevenly paced. The ends carry the brunt of the action, with the middle doing the little character exploring I mentioned above and follows Harry searching for Scorpio and dealing with bureaucrats. I appreciate the development and smaller moments among the action but this film would have benefited from a better balance of those elements.
As enjoyable as Dirty Harry is, there are better 70s movies. Nevertheless, I chose this as my entry for the Ultimate 70s Blogathon for a different reason: it’s influence on the action film genre. This movie laid the groundwork for a no-nonsense hero, like John McClain, John Rambo, or Paul Kersey. Harry Callahan was the type of character who took matters into his own hands, regardless of the rules. This approach to the action hero showed that audiences would, and could, enjoy grittier action films, fundamentally changing the genre’s landscape.
I thought Dirty Harry was GOOD 🙂 Revolutionizing the action genre, it was grittier and had a different hero than seen in films past. With a cool character introduction and classic action hero one-liners, Harry Callahan is a stylish and memorable character. If there had been a better balance between the action sequences and other scenes, I probably would consider this a great movie instead of just a good one.
Favorite Quote Harry: I know what you’re thinking: Did he fire six shots or only five? Well, to tell you the truth, in all this excitement I’ve kinda lost track myself. But being this is a .44 Magnum, the most powerful handgun in the world and would blow your head clean off, you’ve got to ask yourself one question: Do I feel lucky? Well, do ya, punk?
Cast & Crew
Don Siegel – Director
Harry Julian Fink – Screenplay / Story
Rita M. Fink – Screenplay / Story
Dean Riesner – Screenplay
Lalo Schifrin – Composer
Clint Eastwood – Harry Harry Guardino – Bressler
Reni Santoni – Chico
John Vernon – The Mayor
Andrew Robinson – Killer
John Larch – Chief
John Mitchum – De Giorg
Its time for the final non-host entry of the Ultimate 70s Blogathon by Curt of The Hypersonic55’s Realm of Reviews and Other Stuff joining us with a review of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. Head over to Drew’s Movie Reviews to check it out!
Remember to drop by to both of our blogs tomorrow to check our final reviews for the Ultimate 70s Blogathon!
We’re almost finished! Today’s Ultimate 70s Blogathon review is the last non-host review of the blogathon and comes from Curt from The Hypersonic55’s Realm of Reviews and Other Stuff. Curt’s passion for film and all the aspects that make films enjoyable easily comes through in his writing. He also hosts the Film Focus podcast that I have been luckily enough to be a guest on several times. I highly recommend you go give his site a look. But before that, Curt brings with him the second and final review of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest.
Good day to you ladies and gents, today I get to talk to you about one of my all-time favourite films; One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. Now I first saw this film in college I think back in 2009 and after that, it became a film I had to own, and…
Today’s entry for the Ultimate 70s Blogathon comes from one of the most unique participants in the blogathon. This person fuses his two passions of poetry and movies into one. I am of course talking about SG from Ryme and Reason. If you aren’t familiar with his work and don’t know what I’m talking about, head over to his site and see for yourself. He joins us today with a review of the Barbra Streisand comedy For Pete’s Sake.
If only we could strike it rich
Like all the lucky folk
Who never feel privation’s itch
Or fear of going broke.
We’d live in mansions, drink champagne,
And pay our bills on time;
And when we spend like we’re insane,
We’ll laugh, “It ain’t a crime.”
With money, we could take a chance,
Like he who funds and lends,
Investing in high-risk finance
To rake in dividends.
Joining us for the penultimate entry to the Ultimate 70s Blogathon is my Game Warp co-host and showrunner of In the Depths of DVD Hell, Elwood Jones. He is known for his unique choice in films and he drops by here with quite a change with 1977 horror film, Island of Death. Now, if you don’t know Elwood, he doesn’t only write on In the Depths of DVD Hell where he looks at obscure movie titles but right now, he also runs the Movie Tourist column over at That Moment In, as well as the co-host on two other podcasts, Asian Cinema Film Club and TV Good Sleep Bad. A man of many interests and an array of different projects all worth checking out, but first, lets check out his review of Island of Death!
Title: Island of Death Director: Nico Mastorakis Released: 1977 Staring: Robert Behling, Jane Lyle, Jessica Dublin, Gerald Gonalons, Jannice McConnell, Nikos Tsachiridis
Plot: Christopher (Behling) and Celia (Lyle) are enjoying a break on a small Greek island, while pursuing their favourite pastimes, which unfortunately for the locals are sex and violence, meanwhile Inspector Foster (Gonalons) is hot on their heels.
Review: Probably the least well known of the video nasty list, yet arguably the most notorious seeing how it only got taken off the list here in the UK last year, still good things come to those who wait which this film might be anything but, but still I think it’s easy to say that this is possibly one of the most explicit movies to have made the list, especially as it is essentially a constant stream of soft core porn, nudity and violence, with only the most paper thin of plots to string the scenes together, which is hardly surprising when Director Mastorakis seemingly had two goals when he set out to make the movie and that was to first make himself as much money as possible, while the second was to make the most violent and perverse film possible after after being inspired by “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre”, well more specifically he was inspired when he found out just how much money Tobe Hooper was making from it.
Opening with Christopher buried up to his waist in what will later be revealed to be a pit of lime while Celia watches and laughs mockingly we get our first taste of Christopher’s travel documentary esq voice over which continues to appear randomly through the film as the film now cuts back to a few days earlier as Christopher and Celia arrive on the unnamed small Greek island looking like any normal happy couple. Needless to say we are just about fifteen minutes before they are having sex in a phone box while he phones their mother…..yes that’s right they are also brother and sister (though confusingly at times she is also referred to as being his cousin) and really don’t seem to care much about the incestuous nature of their relationship. So after that surprising opening, you would think that Mastorakis might have blown his load early, until Christopher having had his attempts at getting some morning fun rejected instead relives his frustration with a passing goat before graphically killing it in what is unsurprisingly the most talked about moment in the film.
This murderous duo are almost polar opposites to each other when it comes to thier motives, with Christopher murderous tendencies being drawn from his own twisted religious beliefs, making him prone to ranting about his role as the angel of purification and how his victims have sinned as he kills, while these zealot esq beliefs of course makes the residents of the island prime targets for his campaign to purify them of their sins, especially when everyone is prone to spontaneous nudity and so sexually open. Celia meanwhile plays things like his trusted accomplice though seemingly minus Christopher’s religious rants, as she sets up the majority of the murders, as Christopher voyeuristically enjoys watching her having sex and frantically photographing her in action, which seemingly seems to be the only cure for his own impotence, especially when each of the murders are usually followed by frantic sex between him and Celia and more frantic photography of their handiwork.
There is barely a moment wasted here which is not being filled with death, gore or sex or some amalgamation of the three, with the sound of a camera shutter between each scene, creating almost an unintentional feeling that each scene is like a little violent and nasty short, a feeling only further reinforced by the beyond minimal plotting on offer here, which is pretty much abandoned by the final quarter as we lead up to the moments were we first joined the murderous duo, though don’t expect anything to be any clearer by the time we get to were we first started the film, as Mastorakis instead leaps even further into the randomness void of pure cinematic insanity which has Celia making the nasty (literally in this case) with a inbred looking famer, after he beats up and farts (yes you read that right) on Christopher which is around the same point that you realise that Mastorakis really doesn’t care anymore, let alone has any idea how to end the movie.
The death scenes are all explicit and filmed with an almost voyeuristic glee, as Mastorakis unleashes a variety of interesting deaths from the traditional stalk and slash, to the slightly more creative such as a bulldozer blade and memorably using an aeroplane wing to hang one of their victims during flight. Still none of these are shot with any sense of fun are largely just gratuitous violence and gore, which frequently makes for uncomfortable viewing.
“Island of Death” is another key example of a film which made the Video nasty list and which no doubt otherwise would have long since been forgotten like so many of the titles on the list and furthering the belief that the list did more harm than anything regarding protecting the movie going public from these kinds of movies, instead providing exploitation fans and gore hounds with a shopping list of titles to hunt down. Needless to say you can go through life having not seen this film and be all the better, especially as you won’t have wasted an hour and half of your life on this film, which left me with the same feeling I had after watching “The Human Centipede” an equally ghastly experience, which equally was all shocks over substance and like this film also soon realised that it has nowhere to go and no matter how low you sink the moral standard it still doesn’t make up for the serious lack of plotting and as such, I would recommend this only for video nasty completists and celluloid curiosity seekers only.
We’re in the final week of Ultimate 70’s Blogathon! Kicking off this week is one of my segment co-hosts, Phoebe from Starry Traveler’s Road with her review of 1972 animated Peanuts film, Snoopy, Come Home. If you don’t know Phoebe, she is my Battle of Ingredients co-host and her blog focuses on parenting, from movies, books and events reviews and recaps that she shares with her little one along with some nice craft ideas. Head on over and check it all out, but first, check out her review in her Movies with Bun Bun style!
Movies with Bun Bun: Snoopy, Come Home (1972)
Hello everyone! Mega big thank yous to my awesome Battle of Ingredients co-host Tranquil Dreams and Drew for hosting the Ultimate 70s Blogathon! The last two Blogathons were fun so here I am again with my Bun Bun for a new movie review!
I am a huge fan of Snoopy for as long as I remember. I have all kinds of collectibles from a pretty battered tin box to a chess board with Peanuts characters as chess pieces. Given this is an Ultimate 70s Blogathon, I decided to show her one of my favorite movies that I watched again and again on those heavy and shiny LaserDiscs called Snoopy, Come Home.
I am lousy at summaries, so I will go straight to IMDb’s:
Snoopy travels to see his sick former owner and then feels obliged to return to her permanently. – IMDB
I watched many Snoopy movies as I adore the dynamic between Snoopy and Woodstock. I am not sure why this one stands out, but I guess the music (the whistling and The Best of Buddies song) and the fact Snoopy tried to go back to his old owner played a role in all this. Also, the catchy and grave voice emphasizing on “No Dogs Allowed” is funny too –
It took me a few tries before Bun Bun settled down on watching the movie with me. One conclusion is, it may be a little bit long for a toddler’s attention span. Bun knows that I like Snoopy as she pointed to my mug when she saw the character (Yes, I drink from a Snoopy mug that says, “Relaxation is an ART. PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE”, very fitting for a mom.) Instead of climbing on furniture and banging on my keyboard like last year, she was asking “whatz this?” or commented “Oh no!” every now and then, so I had to occasionally stop and explain what is going on to her. The movie took FOREVER to finish… it was quality time as we watched it twice together. The first time was cut into two due to her bedtime (obviously tantrum ensued) and we watched it in one shot the second time around while eating brunch.
There are actually a few things that I realized from re-watching this movie as an adult and mom. Societal norms have changed a lot over the last 30-40 years! I stopped and commented a lot to bun bun during this segment:
I told her how tying thick ropes and pulling hard were not the way to treat animals, especially a dog. Not to mention spanking a dog or anything/anybody is not a nice thing to do as it hurts; therefore, she needs to play nicely!
Every time bun bun saw a crying scene, she pointed and said, “Oh no!” It is nice to see she understands emotions and other things as she progressively learns more about the world.
This is it for our movie review! Hope you enjoy the rest of the Ultimate 70s Blogathon!
Closing out the second week of the Ultimate 70s Blogathon is Kira from Film and TV 101. Kira fills her site with movie reviews, television series reviews, lists, and all other kinds of goodies. Definitely go check her site out, once you finish here of course! Kira joins us today with a review of the gangster movies of all gangster movies: The Godfather.
The ageing patriarch of an organised crime ring passes over control of his age-old empire to his unwilling son.
After turning down a deal with drug dealer Virgil Sollozo, ageing head mobster Don Vito Corleone (Marlon Brando) has an attempt made against his life. After barely pulling through, one of the Don’s sons, Michael (Al Pacino) exacts revenge by beginning a Mob war against Sollozo, which inadvertently rips the family apart.
I’ll admit, I’m quite scared when it comes to reviewing The Godfather. It is…
Halfway through the week and Tom from Plain, Simple Tom Reviews finally join the blogathon! Tom reviews all kinds of movies and television series on his site. No matter your tastes, chances are he reviews it so go give his site a look. As for what he brings with him to the Ultimate 70s Blogathon, well, it’s of course the Jack Nicholson favorite One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. Let’s just jump into it!
It’s been a while since my last blogathon participation and this time, it’s all about films from the 1970s – a particularly phenomenal decade for film since it treated us to such classics as The Godfather I and II, Network, M*A*S*H, A Clockwork Orange and Star Wars. And that’s just skimming the surface. For my participation in this blogathon, my original plan was to revisit All The President’s Men, seeing as…
Joining us with his second entry for Ultimate 70s Blogathon is from MovieRob and his review of Five Easy Pieces. If you missed his first review, it was for The Exorcist and you can find it here. If you don’t know MovieRob, you sure are missing out on a lot of great movie reviews. I mean, he is a movie watching and reviewing monster with over 3,700 reviews on his site in just a few years time. He hosts the monthly Genre Grandeur segment and is currently doing a 90 Days of Nominees segment. He is a must-read movie review site that you have to head over and check out….after you’ve read his review below of Five Easy Pieces.
“You’re a strange person, Robert. I mean, what will you come to? If a person has no love for himself, no respect for himself, no love of his friends, family, work, something – how can he ask for love in return? I mean, why should he ask for it?” – Catherine
Number of Times Seen – 2 (10 Mar 2013 and 5 Feb 2018)
Brief Synopsis – An oil worker not content with his life tries to find a way to happiness.
My Take on it – This is a film that I saw a few years ago and wasn’t too enthralled with but since it was nominated for Best Picture, I decided to rewatch in hopes that maybe I would find a way to connect with the film more this time.
But that wasn’t meant to be because I believe that I enjoyed this film this time even less than the first time I saw it.
We all know that Jack Nicholson is a great actor and he has been nominated so many times for an Oscar (not to mention his three wins), but sometimes his roles just don’t connect well enough.
This, IMHO is one of those situations.
His character is constantly seeking his place in life and after running away from his high class life, he does his best to be a blue collar worker while working on an oil field.
His life is passing him by yet he still isn’t content with anything and wants something else.
He constantly yearns to return to his love of music, yet for some reason doesn’t choose to actively pursue this and would rather cheat on his girlfriend and try to have fun which also doesn’t help him feel more content in life.
I just couldn’t understand the character’s real motivations and didn’t care much for the way he chose to act.
The story itself moves along really slowly and doesn’t go anywhere while trying to help Nicholson’s character find his way in life.
Perhaps I am missing something here with this story or maybe it was more relate-able back when it came out, but I personally just couldn’t care much for it and am completely baffled as to how this was nominated for Best Picture that year along with Best screenplay, Actor (Nicholson) and Actress (Karen Black).
Bottom Line – Still baffled how this film got nominated for Best Picture that year. The performances are nice including that of Nicholson in the lead yet, I couldn’t sympathize with the character at all and didn’t really care as to what would happen to him. The story doesn’t really move along very well and despite knowing that the characters are seeking something better, they rarely try getting it. Perhaps this was more relate-able at the time, but I was just bored the whole time. Even the diner scene wasn’t as powerful as some have claimed.
MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – When Dupea goes to quit his oil-rigging job, the loud whirring of machines can be heard in the background. This identical sound effect was used by George Lucas for the trash compacter scene in Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope (1977). (From IMDB)