1961-1970

Carmelo Bene – Don Giovanni (1970)

Synopsis:
Spectacular Italian comedy-drama directed by Carmelo Bene. The narrative follows how Don Giovanni tries to seduce a young woman who is manically searching for Christian icons. The film is loosely based on Jules Barbey d’Aurevilly’s short story “The Greatest Love of Don Juan”, from the collection Les Diaboliques. The film premiered in the Directors’ Fortnight section of the Cannes Film Festival. Read More »

    Mario Bava – La ragazza che sapeva troppo AKA The Girl Who Knew Too Much (1963)

    Synopsis:
    The American fan of mystery novels, Nora Davis, travels from New York to Rome to spend vacation with her mother’s friend Ethel Windell Batocci. On board the airplane, she accepts a pack of cigarettes from the passenger on the next seat and in the airport she finds that the man is a drug dealer. When she arrives at Ethel’s place, she meets Dr. Marcello Bassi and finds that the old lady is on her deathbed. During the night, Ethel has a heart attack and dies; Nora runs to the hospital to call Marcello. However, she is attacked and robbed on a staircase by a thief and faints. She awakens to witness a woman being stabbed, a man is after her. At the hospital, however, nobody believes her. At Ethel’s funeral, a stranger (Laura Craven-Torrani) introduces herself as a friend of Ethel’s and invites Nora to stay in her apartment while she travels to Switzerland to meet her husband. Nora accepts the invitation and decides to investigate the murder. She believes that the serial-killer of the so called Alphabet Murders is chasing her and she will be the next victim. Read More »

      Michael Carreras – The Curse of the Mummy’s Tomb (1964)

      Synopsis:
      When British archaeologists disturb the tomb of Ra, they have to deal with a curse that condemns anyone involved to death. The American showman who paid for the expedition, Alexander King, insists in taking the precious artifacts to London for an exhibition even though he could have left them for the local authorities who were prepared to pay a hefty price for them. As a result they not only have to face the curse but the wrath of Egyptians who have vowed have the precious find returned. When King finally has his first public showing, he finds that the sarcophagus is empty, the mummy having been taken or – more ominously – come to life to seek revenge. Read More »

        James Hill – The Dock Brief AKA Trial and Error (1962)

        Synopsis
        An incompetent lawyer defends an accused wife murderer. Read More »

          Rollan Sergiyenko – Belye tuchi AKA Bili Khmary AKA White Clouds (1968)

          Quote:
          THE LOST MASTERPIECE OF SOVIET CINEMA

          Belye Tuchi – or as it should be called, Bili Khmary – is a movie that has somehow got lost and is now all but forgotten. The title is usually translated into English as White Clouds but it’s really closer to something like “the dark clouds are coming” but any translation will be miss the correct subtle meaning. The movie was directed by the Ukrainian Rollan Serhiienko, although IMDb mistakenly lists him as Sergiyenko. He was better known as a documentary film maker and later made the award winning Bell of Chernobyl. His career as a feature film director only produced two movies of which this is the best. Read More »

            Zivojin Pavlovic – Neprijatelj (1965)

            Quote:
            At the time when Sovražnik (1965) was filmed , Živojin Pavlović had only two omnibuses that he made with colleagues from the Belgrade Cinema Club, Kapi, vode, ratnici and Grad . The latter was banned by the court, as the only Yugoslav film of that period (produced by the Sarajevo Sutjeska film) to suffer such a fate. It was much more common for a controversial film to end up in the producer’s “bunker” and for permission to be shown at all. This is how Pavlović’s first feature film Return (1964), produced in Belgrade’s Avala Film, went through , and in the meantime he received an offer to direct in Slovenia: he and writer Bora Ćosić adapted FM Dostoevsky’s story, but adapted it to modern times. Read More »

              Chadi Abdel Salam – Al-mummia AKA The Night of Counting the Years (1969)

              In the late 1800s, an isolated Egyptian mountain clan sustains itself by exploiting Egypt’s ancient heritage, secretly raiding the tombs of the Pharaohs in Thebes. “One of the greatest Egyptian films ever made, Al-Mummia has an extremely unusual tone – stately, poetic, with a powerful grasp of time and the sadness it carries. The carefully measured pace, the almost ceremonial movement of the camera, the classical Arabic spoken on the soundtrack, the unsettling score by the great Italian composer Mario Nascimbene – they all work in perfect harmony… This picture has a sense of history like no other, and in the end, the film is strangely, even hauntingly consoling – the final understanding of who and what we are” (Martin Scorsese). Read More »