April 17, 2014

Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush (1968)

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“It’s a case of the fors and the againsts, and we fors are winning!!!” Capable Caroline. Jamie MacGregor. Runny Old Linda. Spike. Audrey. Names that will live forever- or at least they will if you’re a lover of 60s Brit cinema. I’ve lost count of the amount of conversations they’ve cropped up in, normally after an all-night bash spent grooving to suitably retro sounds- but I do remember distinctly that for the last ten or eleven years, mentioning of their names was almost always prefixed or … [Read more...]

Bronco Bullfrog (1969)

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Angry, disaffected youth. Gang violence, robbery and unemployment in decaying post-industrial East London. Youthful optimism amongst a bitter lack of work and no hope of escaping to a better life. If it sounds familiar, it is for good reason – over 40 years after release, this film captures issues that still remain prominent throughout 21st century UK. For what could have been another low budget Swinging London flick with a weak title, this is a notable achievement. Another release from … [Read more...]

The Pleasure Girls (1965)

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“Illicit love, passion, brutality, riotous parties and sudden heartbreak all play their part in this frank story of five bachelor girls who seek fame and fortune amid the bright lights of London.” A ‘Swinging London’ film of the mid-‘60s, The Pleasure Girls focuses on the life and times of five ‘bachelor’ girls living out of their Chelsea flat in a tight time frame of one weekend. Sally (Francesca Annis) is fresh from the countryside and drawn to London to move in with friends and begin … [Read more...]

The Party’s Over (1965)

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Forty-five years since the completion of The Party’s Over, the uncut original of this controversial and critic-battered film is finally to see the light of day. Rescued from the archives where it has lain since 1965, following the unsuccessful run of a heavily censored and edited version, the British Film Institute have published the uncut, pre-release film as part of its “Flipside” range of DVDs exploring obscure and hard to find pieces of British cinema. Facing extraordinary difficulty on … [Read more...]

Privilege (1967)

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Jim McLean. Ozymandius Fremantle. Mike Preston. Steven Shorter. All central characters in great British cult works. All fictional rock stars. All, to paraphrase Graham Chapman, “names that will live forever”. And Steven Shorter may just be the one whose name still carries the most mystery and intrigue. For, despite the renown and cult of personality that surrounds PRIVILEGE- say its name to any devotee of 60s culture and they instantly know what you’re talking about- very few have been able … [Read more...]

Herostratus (1967)

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As a shrieking, bellowing Beethoven movement plays on reel-to-reel cassette, a fair-haired, handsome young man lies on a bed cackling insanely, ignoring his neighbour’s entreaties to “turn that bloody row down”. Soon, he will snap and destroy with his bare hands practically everything of substance within his room- smashing bedsteads, windows, walls, bookcases and paintings, and making more noise than recorded music ever could. As the actor- Michael Gothard in his first major role- embarks upon … [Read more...]

Man of Violence (aka Moon) (1970)

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Michael Latimer and Sebastian Breaks are not, even by the standards of your average exploitation buff (if such a person exists), names that spring to mind when discussing great British cinema. Then again, like all the other instalments in the BFI’s continually intriguing Flipside series, Man Of Violence, better known in some territories as Moon, is not a typical ‘great British film’. If truth be known, or at least if my opinion be known, it’s not a great film in any sense of the word- ironic … [Read more...]