Directed by Don Siegel
Starring Walter Matthau, Joe Don Baker, Felicia Farr, Andy Robinson, Sheree North, Norman Fell, William Schallert, John Vernon, Bob Steele
I love the good old US of A, but there’s one thing where the rest of the world has us beat — outside the US, you can find a Blu-Ray of Don Siegel’s incredible Charley Varrick (1973). Still no hi-def release here, and our only DVD release was full-frame. No wonder the rest of the world hates us. I’ve proclaimed my undying love for this movie many times before, it’s one of my favorites, easy, from one of my favorite directors.
So when I saw it pop up on blu-ray.com, I was overjoyed. This time, Indicator/Powerhouse Films in the UK have announced Charley Varrick on Blu-Ray coming in January with a slew of terrific-sounding extras. The Indicator/Powerhouse release is limited to 3,000 copies. Essentially, this thing is essentially essential.
Directed by Joseph Sargent
Starring Walter Matthau, Robert Shaw, Martin Balsam. Hector Elizondo, James Broderick, Dick O’Neill, Jerry Stiller, Kenneth McMillan, Doris Roberts, Tony Roberts
The Taking Of Pelham One Two Three (1974) has one of the greatest assemblages of New York character actors ever, and it shows how to seamlessly weave humor into a suspense film — without diluting the suspense. And David Shire’s score is just terrific.
Mr. Blue (Robert Shaw): “Now, then, ladies and gentlemen, do you see this gun? It fires 750 rounds of 9-millimeter ammunition per minute. In other words, if all of you simultaneously were to rush me, not a single one of you would get any closer than you are right now. I do hope I’ve made myself understood.”
This is a movie I appreciate a little more every time I see it. Since catching its first network TV airing (with its dialogue looped, edited and just plain monkeyed with to a crazy degree), it’s become one of my favorite films of the 70s.
Kino Lorber will release a special edition Blu-ray in July, packed with interviews, commentaries and other cool stuff. Can’t wait. “Gesundheit.”
Boy, what a great night this will be for those fortunate enough to be there. A tribute to director Don Siegel, at a drive-in, featuring three of his finest films: Coogan’s Bluff (1967), Charley Varrick (1973) and The Killers (1964).
Don Siegel Triple Feature
Friday, July 17, beginning at dusk
General Admission: $10.00
Children’s Admission: $7.00
The Mahoning Drive-In Theater
635 Seneca Road, just of Rte. 443
Lehighton, PA 18235
One of my favorite filmmakers. Three of his best pictures. All in 35mm on “the largest CinemaScope screen in Pennsylvania.” Sounds like heaven.
Filed under 1964, 1968, 1973, Andy Robinson, Angie Dickinson, Clint Eastwood, Don Siegel, Lalo Schifrin, Lee Marvin, Screenings, Walter Matthau
(July 22, 1925 – December 22, 2014)
Just saw that director Joseph Sargent has passed away after a long, distinguished career as a TV director (he did that great Kojack pilot movie).
But for me, a couple of his features stand out. First is Tobruk (1967), the Leo Gordon-scripted war picture starring Rock Hudson and George Peppard. Then there’s the terrific The Taking Of Pelham One Two Three (1974). It’s got one of the greatest assemblages of New York character actors ever, and it shows how to seamlessly weave humor into a suspense film — without diluting the suspense. It’s one I drag out every so often and just marvel at. “Gesundheit.”
Charley Varrick (1973) is one of the best crime films ever made. It’s one of the best films of the 70s, period. And Don Siegel is one of the best directors to ever crawl behind a camera.
With all that said, the fact that the Koch folks in Germany have announced a March 2015 Blu-ray release for it is some of the best news I’ve heard in quite some time.
(October 1, 1920 – July 1, 2000)
Here’s Walter Matthau in Don Siegel’s Charley Varrick (1973), which I hold up as one of the best films of the 70s.
Matthau’s list of terrific movies goes on and on and on.