Dedications: My four late friends Rory, Stan, Bryan, Jeff - shine on you crazy diamonds, they would have blogged too. Then theres Garry from Brisbane, Franco in Milan, Mike now in S.F. / my '60s-'80s gang: Ned & Joseph in Ireland; in England: Frank, Des, Guy, Clive, Joe & Joe, Ian, Ivan, Nick, David, Les, Stewart, the 3 Michaels / Catriona, Sally, Monica, Jean, Ella, Anne, Candie / and now: Daryl in N.Y., Jerry, John, Colin, Martin and Donal.

Saturday, 10 March 2012

MOVIE, Summer 1965

The red cover of MOVIE magazine, Nr 13, dated Summer 1965 - what a treasure trove to find while unpacking boxes recently! This is my summer 1965 - I was 19 and new in London, living a rather solitary life in my room in North London and travelling over the starting-to-swing city in search of movies ... MOVIE was my companion, with its new style of layout and graphics, along with those issues of "Films & Filming" and "Sight & Sound" (see labels) before my social life took off and I became part of the great metropolis.
Lets have a look at the contents:

This issue is mainly about Josef Von Sternberg, a large portion of the issue is devoted to him with an annotated filmography by Peter Bogdanovich who also describes a meeting and interview with the despotic director; plus an article on 6 of his films (THE BLUE ANGEL, MOROCCO, DISHONOURED, THE SCARLET EMPRESS, THE DEVIL IS A WOMAN and THE SHANGHAI GESTURE) - this was before Von Sternberg was "discovered" by the new generation (like me) and those films were hard to see, unless you were near the British Film Institute's National Film Theatre - it would be a few years more before I discovered that shrine to cinema (and where I spent a lot of the '70s and '80s, and its been fun going back again recently after my decades away from the city). Then there is Robin Wood analysing Ozu's TOKYO STORY (which was running at the prestigious Academy Cinema), Philip French on Godard's UNE FEMME MARIEE, Ian Cameron (who interviewed me once for a job which I did not get...) on Bergman's NOW ABOUT THESE WOMEN (his first comedy and in colour, which caused a lot of interest at the time), Robin Wood again on Antonioni's
RED DESERT (with those great photos of the dark haired Vitti). There there is Otto Preminger on his current films BUNNY LAKE IS MISSING and IN HARM'S WAY (loved the former, didn't want to see the latter, I would probably like it a lot more now with Wayne, Neal, De Wilde etc). Then there are reviews of Franju's THERESE, Siegel's THE KILLERS which I liked a lot, ditto CLEOPATRA, LORD JIM (how I liked O'Toole and Daliah Lavi in that), Renoir's LE CRIME DE M. LANGE, and Jerry Lewis's THE PATSY (no, thank you).
Then there are capsule reviews of THE GREATEST STORY EVER TOLD, MATA HARI, DEAR HEART, THE ROUNDERS, A HIGH WIND IN JAMAICA, REPULSION, COMEDY OF TERRORS, THE IPCRESS FILE, THE AMERICANIZATION OF EMILY, VON RYAN'S EXPRESS, THE KNACK, BABY THE RAIN MUST FALL and MAJOR DUNDEE, with some great comments: "Whatever happened to the George Stevens of THE MORE THE MERRIER and I REMEMBER MAMA?"; "Jeanne Moreau (as MATA HARI) sometimes looks radiant, more often looks like hell"; my cult favourite THAT MAN FROM RIO is slated for being dubbed into American, and HUSH HUSH SWEET CHARLOTTE has that great line "Turn off the light, its only real when its dark".

The Hollywood scene is covered by Bogdanovich, and in that age of booming international cinema there are reports from Madrid, Rome, Stocknholm, London and New York. The NY notes by Andrew Sarris are particularly interesting now: On that year's Oscars "I can't make up my mind about Julie Andrews. Is she the new combined Greer Garson and Jeanette Macdonald, or can she have an intelligent career? ... the main interest in Academy Awards lies in what it reveals about the thinking of the industry, not in the relation of the awards to justice and judicious good taste. After all, neither Chaplin nor Garbo ever won a competitive Oscar, and you could write a film history with the films that were never even considered for best picture." (No change there then, all these years later...).

So there you have it, 1965 in a nutshell. Ian Cameron and Mark Shivas edited MOVIE and it was a terrific little magazine with no advertisements at all, unlike what one has to wade through now (I am looking at you EMPIRE). I did a RIP on Cameron who died a while ago.

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