I remember having a very strange discussion that got close to a serious argument about this film.
I was nineteen at the time. My first wife, who was somewhat older than me, was upset that I wanted to see Goodbye Cruel World instead of visiting a work colleague of hers.
"I have no interest in seeing that crap!" she said.
"That's fine, I'll see it on my own."
She picked up the newspaper and took a close look at the ad mat. "You can't be serious about wanting to see this."
"I'm dead serious."
"I don't get it. You'd rather see a film about a guy living in a toilet than spend the afternoon with me."
"You're welcome to join me," I smiled.
She looked at the ad mat again. "No, there are a million things I'd rather do than watch that crap."
Although I loved the arm disappearing into the toilet bowl, I was equally drawn to the copy in the top left corner of the ad. It announced that Chuck Mitchell ('Porky' from Porky's) was bigger (aka fatter aka chubbier aka grosser aka more hideously monstrous) in this film than "ever". Than "ever"??? Fuck, I had to see this!!!
Well, I did see the film at the Showcase Sterling Heights, and, unfortunately, it wasn't about a bloke living in a toilet -- or a mermaid in a manhole, either. It was a pile of crap. The ex- had the film figured way before I did.
I'd also dispute the claim that Chuck Mitchell was "bigger than ever" in Goodbye Cruel World. He most certainly was not. I'll never forgive cinema for that betrayal.
This was just a damn odd movie that I went to see because it existed and I hadn't seen it. I wanted to leave about ten minutes in, but I stayed because I'm under the ridiculous delusion that I'll be awarded a prize one day for watching films like this.
The good old days when films were rated "X" (Bullitt) and 'AO" (Bonnie and Clyde).
Nice to see the Dunwich alongside Easy Rider, and within the same general frame as the impressive Anthony Quinn-starrer A Dream of Kings. That film has finally been released on DVD by Warner Archives.
I appeared recently in a documentary by filmmaker Michael Smith in which I took his camera on a tour of Melbourne's now extinct cinemas. The Roma, for example, has become a shoe store; the cinema's original structure is still there, though. You used to walk down steep steps to get to the tiny little box office. The steps now lead to shoe displays. The Century, on busy Swanston St., is now a shady nightclub (aren't they all?).
Only the Rivoli Twin and Balwyn cinemas still exist. Both have at least doubled their screen capacity.
I saw Paperhouse at the AMC Century 14 (in Century City) and loved it. It's a prime example of an adult fairytale, and the type of film that audiences rarely support. Neither do distributors or exhibitors, it seems. The film played at one cinema only. I like Bernard Rose's films.
Jack Abramoff, the subject of the must-see doco Casino Jack and the United States of Money, produced a couple of feature films with his dubiously acquired cash. Joseph (The Prowler, Invasion USA) Zito's Red Scorpion was one of these features. As you can see, Abramoff's name -- and his brother's name -- are all over the credit block.
The production, filmed in South Africa, was a troubled one. It had a helluva hard time getting a US release because of South Africa's apartheid policies at the time. It was distributed by James (The Exterminator) Glickenhaus's Shapiro-Glickenhaus organization.
Today, Glickenhaus is a Wall St. bigshot, and Abramoff, still in jail, will be released shortly.
Abramoff was also the subject of the excellent Kevin Spacey film Casino Jack.
I couldn't quite acquire a taste for this filmed play directed and written by David Hare.
Some great dialog, though, and a potent performance by director Mike Nichols.
Saw it at the Angelika while working in New York at the time.
Another interesting release from George Harrison's Handmade Films, and another -- like How To Get Ahead in Advertising -- that nobody went to see.
The film, structured as a road trip, focuses on the plight of Native Americans and applies a great deal of humor to its thesis.
I saw it at the AMC Century 14 on a Saturday afternoon and was alone.
Apparently, it was a passion project for George Harrison, and it's well worth tracking down.