USA

Gordon Willis – Windows (1980)

Emily is the subject of a perverse obsession by a gay neighbor, Andrea, who not only is in lust with her but hires a rapist in order to get audio tapes of her moaning. Andrea turns peeping tom and watches Emily with a telescope as she begins a love affair with Detective Cortese Read More »

William Castle – Voice of the Whistler (1945)

Synopsis:
The 4th film of the Columbia series based on the CBS radio program, “The Whistler”, finds wealthy John Sinclair, with no health or friends, being advised by his doctor to take a long vacation. Heading for the Great Lakes, he becomes ill in the cab operated by Ernie Sparrow an is taken to a clinic where he meets nurse Joan Martin, who is engaged to intern Fred Graham. Doctors now tell him he has only a few months to live and advise him to go to Maine (where, evidently, it will seem longer.) He asks Joan to marry him, promising to leave her his fortune. Read More »

Ridley Scott – Blade Runner [The Final Cut] (2007)

SYNOPSIS:
Los Angeles, year 2019. Cynical ex-cop Deckard (Harrison Ford) is a retired assassin of rogue androids (called “replicants”). His former boss, Bryant (M. Emmet Walsh), presses him into service: he is to kill a group of physically superior replicants that are on the loose after escaping from an “off-world” colony. Deckard visits the Tyrell Corporation, where he encounters mogul Eldon Tyrell (Joseph Turkel) and his assistant, Rachael (Sean Young). Tyrell informs Deckard that Rachael is a new breed of replicant–implanted with memories, she believes herself to be human. Bent on speaking to Tyrell in order to find out what their “termination dates” are, two of the replicants–Roy Batty (Rutger Hauer) and Pris (Daryl Hannah)–insinuate themselves into the home of geneticist J.F. Sebastian (William Sanderson), who created the replicant design for Tyrell. In the meantime, two more of the replicants have been disposed of and Deckard has become romantically obsessed with Rachael. Read More »

Zoltan Korda – Sahara (1943)

Synopsis:
Sergeant Joe Gunn and his tank crew pick up five British soldiers, a Frenchman and a Sudanese man with an Italian prisoner crossing the Libyan Desert to rejoin their command after the fall of Tobruk. Tambul, the Sudanese leads them to an abandoned desert fortress where they hope to find water. Soon a detachment of German soldiers arrives and attempts to barter food for water, but Gunn and his followers refuse. When the Germans attack, Gunn leads his desert-weary men in a desperate battle, hoping that British reinforcements can arrive in time. Read More »

Mel Brooks – Blazing Saddles (1974)

Synopsis:
The Ultimate Western Spoof. A town where everyone seems to be named Johnson is in the way of the railroad. In order to grab their land, Hedley Lemar (Harvey Korman), a politically connected nasty person, sends in his henchmen to make the town unlivable. After the sheriff is killed, the town demands a new sheriff from the Governor (Mel Brooks). Hedley convinces him to send the town the first Black sheriff (Cleavon Little) in the west. Bart is a sophisticated urbanite who will have some difficulty winning over the townspeople. Read More »

Howard Alk – The Murder of Fred Hampton (1971)

Quote:
Chicago native Howard Alk helped found Second City in 1959 and made a name for himself in the ’60s and ’70s as a documentary cinematographer, editor, and director. His debut feature, American Revolution 2 (1969, codirected by Mike Gray) looked at the Black Panther Party in Chicago; this follow-up, a profile of Panther leader Fred Hampton, unexpectedly turned into a true-crime story in December 1969 when Hampton and another Panther were fatally shot during the Chicago Police Department’s notorious raid on a Panther crash pad in West Town. The documentary (1971) presents Hampton as a charismatic figure given to violent revolutionary rhetoric, but after his death the focus shifts to Cook County state’s attorney Ed Hanrahan, whose report exonerating the police department was treated as gospel truth by the Chicago Tribune but belied by a wealth of physical evidence at the scene of the crime. As a first draft of history, this is invaluable, though its topical relevance has hardly diminished. Read More »

Jack Smight – Airport 1975 (1974)

Synopsis:

When the pilot of a small aircraft has a heart attack and crashes his plane into the cockpit of a Boeing 747, several members of the flight crew are killed and the pilot is blinded. Miraculously, the 747 stays in the air on auto-pilot with flight attendant Nancy Prior at the controls. Ground controllers, including her boyfriend Alan Murdock, try to teach her the basics but they soon realize they will have to get a trained pilot into the cockpit. Their first attempt fails and Murdock realizes he will have to do it. Meanwhile, various passengers have their own problems including a young girl who is destined to a life saving operation. Read More »