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Gunn With Occasional Music

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, March 31, 2020 04:49pm | Post a Comment

Peter Gunn

By Brett Stillo

Many of us are finding ourselves with a lot of time on our hands -- A LOT of time. We’ve been granted a Peter Gunn, Billy Bartybittersweet surplus of hours to watch whatever we want for as long as we want. With the streaming lanes wide open, my viewing interests have led me to wander back to 1959 to get acquainted with a forgotten crusader in the annals of Pop Culture -- Peter Gunn.

For most of my life, Peter Gunn, the smoother-than-smooth TV private eye created by Blake Edwards, was just a name to me. The series came and went before my time, banished from the color-saturated rerun carousel of my youth to a monochrome junkyard of old shows from the black and white era.

The only thing I really knew about Peter Gunn was the music…and that theme song! That stone-cold bass methodically prowling down a dark street, chased by the frantic screams of brass. Composer Henry Mancini orchestrated a glorious truce between two musical generations: the powerhouse swing of the Big Bands and the brazen snarl of Rock and Roll. Elmer Bernstein built the launchpad for jazz on film with his swaggering score for The Man With the Golden Arm in 1955. Three years later, Mancini blasted it into orbit. This set the tempo for action-packed jazz scores on film and television for the decade to come.

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NOIR CITY 18: INTERNATIONAL II, January 24 - February 2

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, January 3, 2020 07:53pm | Post a Comment

Noir City 18

Amoeba Music is proud to join forces once again with the Film Noir Foundation's epic yearly festival, Le DoulosNOIR CITY this January. America doesn't have a monopoly on swaggering gangsters, larcenous lovers, surly ex-cons, corrupt cops, and scheming femmes fatales. Six years after the first NOIR CITY: INTERNATIONAL, the Film Noir Foundation is at it again with NOIR CITY 18: INTERNATIONAL II, presenting an array of classic films from around the globe. It's going to be a wide-ranging, thematically cohesive immersion in a sordid world of sinister and sexy affairs, including the world premieres of two new restorations by the Film Noir Foundation. Yes, "It's a Bitter Little World," but for ten days and nights at the majestic Castro Theatre, NOIR CITY will be cinema paradiso. As always, the festival is programmed and hosted by Eddie Muller, internationally renowned "Czar of Noir" and host of the popular Turner Classic Movies series Noir Alley.

For veteran cinephiles, it's a chance to again experience cherished cinematic masterpieces in a bona Pale Flowerfide movie palace. For those just starting their cinematic journey, NOIR CITY is the perfect introduction to a wide world of international filmmakers and stars, on the big screen, larger than life. The 10-day excursion travels through hot-blooded nightclubs of the Mexican cabareteras, neon-streaked alleys of Japanese yakuza thrillers, the stylish Parisian underworld, Italian palazzos hiding crimes of every social strata, a Kafkaesque Prague as envisioned by the Czech New Wave, even a rare serial killer film set in Nazi Germany made by Hollywood's finest director of film noir, Robert Siodmak. Tour guides include some of the world's most revered filmmakers: Michelangelo Antonioni, Andrzej Wajda, Julien Duvivier, Jean-Pierre Melville, Roberto Gavaldón, Jirí Weiss, and Masahiro Shinoda.

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Experiment in Twin Peaks

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 11, 2019 04:25pm | Post a Comment

Experiment In Terror

By Kai Wada Roath
Ambassador of Confusion Hill and host of the Super Shangri-La Show


The next evening you are heading through the Yerba Buena Tunnel on your way over the Emperor Norton Bridge to Baghdad By The Bay be sure to play Henry Mancini's all time slow-creeper hit, "Experiment in Terror," which is the theme from Blake Edward's outstandingly suspenseful crime movie of the same name.


The lead of the film, played by Lee Remick, is under the spell of fear from a psychotic killer played by none other than Ross Martin, who many of you may remember as Artemus Gordon, "Inventor" and "Master of Disguise" on the TV show The WIld Wild West (1965-69). Lee's character asks for the help of the FBI and is helped by an agent played by Glenn Ford. One of my favorite movies with Glenn Ford is Lust for Gold (1949) where he plays Jacob Waltz, the famous Dutchman who hides his gold in the Superstition Mountains. You've heard of the Lost Dutchman's treasure right? How about the famous Peratla Stones? Another film that I really enjoy that also involves Glenn Ford and hidden treasure is the 1953 crime-adventure Plunder of the Sun.

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Noir City Xmas, December 18

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 6, 2019 06:00pm | Post a Comment

La Otra

Join the Film Noir Foundation on Wednesday, December 18, 7:30pm at San Francisco's Castro La OtraTheatre for the annual Noir City Xmas. It will be a special evening of yule cruelty with a presentation of the dark Mexican holiday classic, La Otra (1946). The entire schedule for NOIR CITY INTERNATIONAL II, a program of noir from around the globe coming January 24-February 2, 2020, will also be revealed that night. Both events will be hosted by Eddie Muller, the Film Noir Foundation’s founder and president, as well as the host of TCM’s Noir Alley.

Dolores del Rio, one of the most beautiful actresses of all time, stars in the noir-laden thriller La Otra as identical twins: Maria, a manicurist who lives in near-poverty, and her sister Magdalena, who married the wealthy man Maria once loved. When the estranged sisters reunite at the funeral of Magdalena's husband, Maria can't help but imagine how different life would be if she could only trade places with her sister. Uh-oh. Take a guess where this is headed. Co-starring Jose Baviera, Agustin Irusta, and Victor Junco, with extraordinary cinematography by the great Alex Phillips. Del Rio enjoyed a successful career in Hollywood during the 1920s and 1930s before she returned to her native Mexico in the 1940s to claim her place as one of the nation's most renowned stars. La Otra is the first feature made under her own production banner, Mercurio. The film was also the initial collaboration between director Roberto Gavaldon and writer-activist Jose Revueltas, who would make eleven more films together becoming arguably the preeminent filmmaking team in Mexico.

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Noir City 17: Film Noir In The 1950s, January 25 - February 3

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, January 6, 2019 05:57pm | Post a Comment

Noir City 17, San Francisco

Dive into NOIR CITY 17 at San Francisco's historic Castro Theatre January 25-February 3 to Trappedexperience (through a lens, darkly) the 1950s -- a turbulent and transitional time in American history, culture, and cinema. Nothing would ever be the same. Film Noir Foundation president and the man known internationally as the "Czar of Noir," not to mention the host of Turner Classic Movies' popular weekly series Noir Alley, Eddie Muller, will once again lead audiences on a ten-night excursion through "Hollywood's only organic artistic movement." Strap in for danger, desire, and despair!

This year's program extends last year's chronological pairings of "A" and "B" from the 1940s into the 1950s, offering viewers a slate of films that track noir through the declining studio system and into a fresh cinematic landscape where noir was refashioned, both subtly and radically, for a new generation.

“I call it curated time-travel," says Muller. "We start out in the classic era at the peak of the noir movement and with each successive show we move relentlessly toward revolution—a 1960 double bill of Psycho and Breathless, two movies that effectively changed noir, and movies, forever.”

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