and FILM NOTES
Plus irreverent commentary by Hollywood-based, British humorist
(co-creator/producer/host of this festival) - with films rated on
his personal Shag-ometer! (Pat. Pending)
FRIDAY, JUNE 25 - 7:00 PM|
Specially visiting from UK - co-star Eleanor Bron in-person!
Martin Lewis says: 5 Shags!
This film is utterly marvelous. Peter Cook and Dudley Moore at their
very best. The casting of Raquel Welch as one of the seven sins ("Lust"
- what else?!) was inspired. Cook once told me that he had gone to the
distributors before the film was released and dead-panned that he wanted
the film to be retitled simply "RAQUEL WELCH." Because, he explained to
the bewildered executives, the theater marquees could then read: Peter
Cook & Dudley Moore in "Raquel Welch"!! Don't miss this classic!
1967, 20th Century Fox (Criterion), 107 min. Dir. Stanley Donen.
BEDAZZLED is the definitive Mod Comedy, filled with leaping lesbian
nuns, bottles of Froony Green Eyewash and Raquel Welch as "Lillian Lust"
(the Babe with the Bust). Peter Cook wrote the screenplay and stars as
the deliciously hip Devil, merrily ripping the last page out of Agatha
Christie novels. Dudley Moore co-stars as the hapless hamburger chef
who trades his soul for seven chances to bed the luscious Eleanor Bron.
Includes wonderful parody of the British mod pop show "Ready, Steady,
Go!" with Moore and Cook portraying rival pop singers out to impress the
Plus, rare British TV clips of Peter Cook and
Peter Cook and Dudley Moore
FRIDAY, JUNE 25 - 9:30 PM|
Swingin' London in two ultra-rare movies!
In-person guest! Double-Oscar-winning director Robert Amram began his
career as a writer for "Mods & Rockers!" director - the late Kenneth Hume - and he will introduce that film with some amusing memories of the
MODS & ROCKERS!
Martin Lewis says: 3 1/2 Shags!
I've never seen this - but I booked it for the festival for four
reasons. 1) Without producer-hustler Larry Parnes we would probably
never have heard of the Troggs or Kinks. We OWE him! 2) "Heinz" was
the first British bass player to discover the sexual power of peroxide.
Without him there would have been no Sting! 3) The film title matched
the name we'd already selected for this festival. So we HAD to have
it. 4) The original synopsis was the clincher!
1964, 25 min. Color. Dir. Kenneth Hume. This insanely-rare Mod gem was
produced by Troggs/Kinks manager Larry Parnes to cash in on the
beat-music boom — and features Sting-prototype Heinz - a bottle-blonde
bass guitarist who exited beat pioneers the Tornadoes ("Telstar") for
solo stardom; a sublime 'Beatles ballet' sequence and an 18-year old
Mick Fleetwood drumming in a Beatles cover band!
The original promotional synopsis for the film describes it as follows:
"A symbolic ultra modern coffee bar sets the scene for a girl in gold
lame jeans, bolero and bootees, to start moving to the pulsating rhythms
beating out from a glittering juke box. As the music becomes
progressively louder and more frantic, so the dancer increases the speed
of her lithe movements to keep pace with the tempo. A boy starts to
dance with this red-headed dynamo of a girl, but is repelled when she
accepts the advances of a second boy. The two men vie for her
The Animals and Small Faces
TONITE LET'S ALL MAKE LOVE IN LONDON
Martin Lewis says: 4 Shags!
This film captures the exhilarating, giddy feeling of being alive in
London in 1966. For one brief shining moment (actually 1964 to 1968)
London was the capital of the universe. We were kings of the world!
We had the Beatles, Stones, Who & Kinks. We had Mary Quant. We had
Carnaby Street and Kings Road. And in July '66 we beat Germany at
soccer to win the World Cup! England indeed swung "like a pendulum
do." Add in Syd Barrett and it truly felt like the Piper WAS At The
Gates of Dawn... Come "See Emily Play" indeed... Come See SYD Play!!!!
1967, Blue Dolphin Films, 70 min. Subtitled "A Pop Concerto For Film,"
director Peter Whitehead's kaleidoscopic documentary of mid-60's London
features a Who's Who of the Mod Scene — including Michael Caine, Vanessa
Redgrave (singing songs for Fidel Castro!), Julie Christie, David
Hockney, Allen Ginsberg, novelist Edna O'Brien, The Animals, the Small
Faces, the Rolling Stones and their enigmatic manager Andrew Loog
Oldham. It also features extremely rare footage and early music of the
original Pink Floyd with the legendary Syd Barrett! The Pink Floyd
material was shot just before they recorded their first album. A
must-see for fans of the 'Crazy Diamond.'
A rare photo of Syd Barrett on stage with Pink Floyd
SATURDAY, JUNE 26 - 4:00 PM|
Mod Children's Matinee — In Super-Marionation CinemaScope!!
THUNDERBIRDS ARE GO!
Martin Lewis says: 4 1/2 Shags!
Gerry and Sylvia Anderson were geniuses. They put sly humor into their
puppet characters. Though created for kids - the TV shows and their
spin-off movies worked just as well for adults. "Thunderbirds" was
actually the fourth of their creations in as many years. ("Four Feather
Falls," "Supercar" and "Fireball XL5" preceded the International Rescue
Thunderbirds crew.) Producers of today's kids entertainment might spend
millions on effects and computer animation - but they can't rival the
naive charm of this movie. If you have kids anywhere under the age of
80 - bring 'em! They'll thank you! Thunderbird audiences are Go!!!!!
1965, MGM/UA, 94 min. Dir. David Lane. Gerry and
Sylvia Anderson's hit TV-series "Thunderbirds Are Go!" virtually defined
the Mod/Sci-Fi look — with its sleek silver space-craft and cheeky
dialogue ("That's F-A-B!"). This — the first of two stunning
THUNDERBIRDS features shot in WideScreen — features our heroic puppets
blasting off into space, where they collide with marionettes of Cliff
Richard & The Shadows singing the hit theme song!!
SATURDAY, JUNE 26 - 6:00 PM|
FAB BEATLE NIGHT! Producer Walter Shenson In-Person!!
Martin Lewis says: 5 Shags!
"A Hard Day's Night" rightly gets all the critics' plaudits for its
ground-breaking style - and "Help!" is consequently usually held in
slightly lesser regard. But Lester, Shenson - and Fabs manager Brian
Epstein instinctively knew that - just as each Beatles album showed
musical progress - this film had to be much more than a repeat of the
Beatles' first film. (ie they couldn't produce a cloned formula film as
Elvis' 60's movies had become.) The rich colors and snappy pace
perfectly matched the warm hues and muscular strut of the music the Fabs
created between 1964's exuberant, monochromatic "Hard Day's Night" album
and 1966's diamond-sharp, op-art "Revolver" collection. This film is
Austin to the 10th Power!
1965, 90 min. Dir. Richard Lester. "We were guest stars in our
own movie," John Lennon once quipped about HELP! — an elaborate,
hilariously-irreverent color fantasia in which the Beatles go up against
Leo McKern (TV's "Rumpole"), Eleanor Bron (from BEDAZZLED) and their
legions of Kali-inspired killers. From London to the slopes of the
Austrian Tyrol and the Bahamas. Also features Dick Lester cast regular
- Roy Kinnear (the Musketeer films), and Beatles movie staple - Victor
Spinetti. Featuring infectious vintage mid-period Beatle tunes including
The Night Before, You've Got To Hide Your Love Away, I Need You,
Another Girl, Ticket To Ride and You're Going To Lose That Girl
looks (and sounds) better and better each year.
Plus some Beatles
rarities! Discussion following with producer Walter Shenson.
The Beatles on a mountainside in Austria, as Eleanor Bron,
dressed in white, blends into the background
80th BIRTHDAY SURPRISE FOR PRODUCER WALTER SHENSON!!!
By the way - producer Walter Shenson - who also produced "A Hard Day's
Night" - celebrates his 80th birthday just four days before this
screening. Let's give him a magnificent birthday gift! Let's give
him a packed house - full of Beatles fans of all ages! Our special
thank you to the man who put the Beatles on film and defined their
visual image for all time.
SATURDAY, JUNE 26 - 8:15 PM|
U.S. Premiere – Restored Director's Cut!
Director Joe Massot In-Person!!
Martin Lewis says: 4 Shags!
I saw this film in January 1969 - in the week it opened in London.
Actually - I think it was the week it PLAYED in London! It was the
first film to show at the CineCenta in Leicester Square - Britain's
first multiplex. It was treated harshly by the critics - and closed
almost immediately. It was a shaggy, impressionistic film that
defied convention. It was a whimsical trip.
And watching Jane Birkin's barely-clad body was a not entirely
unpleasant experience for a young, growing lad! The music was
excellent. Harrison created a superb soundscape which augmented the
action. I've seen Joe Massot's new director's cut and it holds up very
well. Given that the film never made it to North America it's highly
unlikely that Mike Myers could have seen this film. And yet you'll
sense Austin Powers in every frame! Wow! Cosmic forces baby!! The
newly-discovered Harrison recording is a great bonus too. It's like
being deep inside the Magical Mystery Tour! Blue Jay 'Wall'!!!!
Beatle Rarities Among Highlights Of Film Fest
1969, 76 min. Dir. Joe Massot. Absolutely glorious/meaningless
headtripping madness, WONDERWALL is a virtually plotless fantasy about
an eccentric scientist (Jack MacGowran) who discovers a secret window
into the endless sex-life of gorgeous nymph Jane Birkin (Serge
Gainsbourg's main squeeze and co-singer of "Je T'aime Moi Non Plus"-!)
It features a shimmering, sitar-laced instrumental score by Beatle
George Harrison plus the film's lost and previously-unused "Blue Jay
Way"-like theme song – recently discovered in Harrison's vaults. A
surreal journey back to the Age of Altered Consciousness — lap it up!
Plus the short "Reflections On Love", 1965, 13 min. Exuberant
CinemaScope portrait of Swinging London from WONDERWALL director Joe
Massot (who later shot the Led Zeppelin doc THE SONG REMAINS THE SAME)
featuring definitive London dollybird Jenny Boyd (sister of Beatle
George's wife Pattie and future wife of Mick Fleetwood). Discussion
following with director Joe Massot.
SATURDAY, JUNE 26 - 9:00 PM|
LIVE ON STAGE - MOD ONE-MAN SHOW!!
IN OUR NEW STEVEN SPIELBERG THEATRE (At The Egyptian Theatre)
Martin Lewis says: Shag-worthy!
Oh gosh! Modesty forbids me commenting on this show! I know the
performer far too well to be completely objective. But I can tell you
that the photo was taken at the height of my mod period. In the
automatic photo booth at Swiss Cottage tube station. Cost me 2/6.
Which was how we wrote down 2 shillings and sixpence in those
pre-decimal days. (Spoken aloud - we would say: "Two and six.") 12.5
pence now. Approx. 20¢. I thought my Beatles cardigan was VERY hip!
And the Roy Orbison shades set me back 5 shillings! 40¢! I felt like a
million pounds.... and looked like a total twit!
An Audience with Martin Lewis
Live show. 75 min. Complementing our MODS & ROCKERS! festival we're
proud to present two live stage performances by British humorist Martin
Lewis of his acclaimed one-man show GREAT EXPLOITATIONS! - an
autobiographical tale which starts with teenage life in 60's Swingin'
(His "gospel-true" story includes the claim that at the age of
14 he kissed his first girl, murdered his Latin teacher - and wrote 4
songs recorded by the Beatles!) This is the inaugural event at our new
78-seat Steven Spielberg Theatre. Special price: $10 ($7 members)
"Pick of the Week! True wit... Ultra-high-energy... machine-gun style
delivery of sardonic observations - sweetened by an irrepressible
exuberance... A bloody good time!" - L.A. Weekly
"A very captivating raconteur" - Los Angeles Magazine
"Intelligently funny..." Paper Magazine (New York)
"Warm, charming and funny as hell!" - Nightlife Magazine
SUNDAY, JUNE 27 - 4:00 PM
Martin Lewis says: 5 Shags!
Every boy wanted to be David Hemmings' character. He was obviously
partly-modeled on David Bailey - THE great Swinging Sixties
photographer. What a great life! Snap a few shots of Twiggy in the
morning. Down the pub for a couple of pints of 'wallop' at lunch. Back
to the studio. Sweating over a hot Hasselblad. Flash a few frames of
Julie Christie. Then off for a club crawl. The Ad Lib...
The Bag O' Nails... The Speakeasy... Then back home for a quick
'leg-over' with live-in galpal Jean Shrimpton... "Yeah baby! Give me
all you've got...!" (Somehow it doesn't sound the same when Herb Ritts
1966, MGM (Warners), 111 min. Dir. Michelangelo Antonioni. In-demand
fashion photographer David Hemmings shags half the models in London —
before running into enigmatic beauty Vanessa Redgrave, who only wants a
certain roll of film from him. A riddle within a riddle, Antonioni's
most famous film has often been imitated (De Palma's BLOW-OUT,
Greenaway's DRAUGHTSMAN'S CONTRACT) — but never equaled. Great score by
Herbie Hancock. The film was shot during the brief 4-month period in
1966 when The Yardbirds featured its rarest line-up - the twin lead
guitar attack of Jeff Beck and Jimmy Page - and Antonioni had the
wisdom/fortune to snag them for his movie. Watch for the scene when
Hemmings fights to grab a piece of Jeff Beck's smashed guitar as a gig
gets out of control!
SUNDAY, JUNE 27 - 6:30 PM
Two Groovy Movies! Double-Feature!!
Martin Lewis says: 4 1/2 Shags!
I remember going to see this at the Golders Green Ionic (an indie cinema
near the north west London suburb I grew up in.) Scriptwriters Dick
Clement & Ian La Frenais had previously created one of the 60's best TV
sitcoms - "The Likely Lads." A couple of frisky, Northern working-class
lads permanently on the razzle. One was a cheeky John Lennon character.
His pal was the cuter, quieter, down-to-earth one - a sort of hybrid of
the personalities of Paul, George and Ringo. The two brothers who
Clement and La Frenais created for The Jokers were from a different
social background - they were upper-class Southerners - but even so -
Michael Crawford's character was clearly a reprise of their cheeky,
Lennon-like tearaway. How I wanted to be like him! Watching the
Crawford character and pals zoom around London's toniest districts in
the ultimate mod car - a souped up mini-moke - is to experience the
jubilant essence of how it FELT to be young in Merrie England circa
1967, Universal, 94 min. Director Michael Winner's dazzling (but
rarely-screened) satire of Young London, features Michael Crawford
(pre-Phantom of the Opera) and Oliver Reed as a pair of rich,
freewheeling brothers making the rounds of posh parties. Their anarchic
spirit gets the better of them — and a string of increasingly elaborate
pranks results in their making off with the Crown Jewels. The first
movie written by Britain's premier comedy-writing duo Dick Clement & Ian
La Frenais ("The Commitments" and "Still Crazy.")
Martin Lewis says: 5 Shags!
The notion that a pop star (they hadn't yet become 'rock' stars) could
ever be that influential on what kids thought or how they felt was held
to be ludicrous at the time. Even the success of the Beatles and Dylan
was (erroneously) thought by sociologists to be a passing fad like
hula-hoops. 'They' just didn't get it. Watkins DID get it. He sensed
that the power of the counter-culture could be usurped for evil ends.
This film was way ahead of its time. Incidentally, Watkins' 1966 "War
Game" was a 'what-if'' docu-drama commissioned by the BBC to look at how
Britain would deal with a nuclear attack. The BBC establishment was so
horrified by the devastation and social disorder that Watkins' film
depicted - that they refused to air the show. It was smuggled out and
hit the underground movie circuit. Beatles manager Brian Epstein showed
it to John Lennon - who later cited it as the film that politicized him
and turned him into a pacifist. Power to Peter Watkins! "Privilege" is
just as good! Don't miss this film!!!
1967, Universal, 101 min. From Peter Watkins, director of seminal
British anti-nuclear film THE WAR GAME, PRIVILEGE is a hypnotically
prescient look at the sinister media-controlled future — where pretty
young pop-star Paul Jones (once lead singer for Manfred Mann) is
manipulated by Church and State to influence his legions of adoring
fans. Sixties supermodel/icon Jean Shrimpton (in her only major film
role) plays Jones' disillusioned girlfriend, who finally convinces him
to rebel against the forces controlling their lives. Jones belts out
the title song and several others as a proto Ziggy Stardust in a film
that brilliantly anticipates the rise of rock star as religious icon.
(Only surviving print.)
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