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If This Distracted Globe ran the New Beverly Cinema

July 31st, 2008 · 7 Comments


In a first here at This Distracted Globe, I’m taking a break from my usual writing regimen to participate in The 12 Movies Meme, which Pat Piper at Lazy Eye Theatre started last week. Pat asked his legions of readers to pretend they were curators at the New Beverly Cinema – L.A.’s renowned revival theater – and to program six double features. Here are my selections and the days they would be played:

Monday: Harry and Walter Go To New York (1976)/ The Fortune (1975)

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Harry and Walter Go To New York (1976)
Screenplay by Don Devlin and John Byrum, story by John Byrum
Directed by Mark Rydell
Cast: James Caan, Elliott Gould, Diane Keaton, Michael Caine, Charles Durning, Lesley Ann Warren, Jack Gilford, Val Avery, Carol Kane, David Proval, Michael Conrad, Burt Young
Produced by Devlin-Gittes/ Tony Bill
Running time: 115 minutes

The Fortune
Written by Carole Eastman
Directed by Mike Nichols
Cast: Warren Beatty, Jack Nicholson, Stockard Channing, Scatman Crothers, Dub Taylor
Produced by Columbia Pictures
Running time: 88 minutes

Tuesday: Charley Varrick (1973)/ Thunderbolt and Lightfoot (1974)

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Charley Varrick (1973)
Screenplay by Howard Rodman and Dean Riesner, based on the novel by John Reese
Directed by Don Siegel
Cast: Walter Matthau, Joe Don Baker, Andrew Robinson, Felicia Farr, Sheree North, Norman Fell
Produced by Universal Pictures
Running time: 111 minutes

Thunderbolt and Lightfoot
Written by Michael Cimino
Directed by Michael Cimino
Cast: Clint Eastwood, Jeff Bridges, George Kennedy, Geoffrey Lewis, Catherine Bach, Gary Busey, Vic Tayback, Dub Taylor
Produced by The Malpaso Company
Running time: 115 minutes

Wednesday: Young Doctors In Love (1982)/ Top Secret! (1984)

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Young Doctors In Love (1982)
Written by Michael Elias & Rich Eustis
Directed by Garry Marshall
Cast: Michael McKean, Sean Young, Dabney Coleman, Rick Overton, Crystal Bernard, Ted McGinley, Saul Rubinek, Harry Dean Stanton, Pamela Reed, Taylor Negron, Michael Richards
Produced by ABC Motion Pictures
Running time: 96 minutes

Top Secret! (1984)
Written by Jerry Zucker & Jim Abrahams & David Zucker and Martyn Burke
Directed by Jerry Zucker & Jim Abrahams & David Zucker
Cast: Val Kilmer, Lucy Gutteridge, Christopher Villiers, Jeremy Kemp, Warren Clarke, Harry Ditson, Jim Carter, Eddie Tagoe, Omar Sharif, Peter Cushing
Produced by Kingsmere Properties/ Paramount Pictures
Running time: 90 minutes

Thursday: The Dark Crystal (1982)/ Return To Oz (1985)

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The Dark Crystal (1982)
Screenplay by David Odell, story by Jim Henson
Directed by Jim Henson and Frank Oz
Cast: Jim Henson, Kathryn Mullen, Frank Oz, Dave Goelz
Produced by Jim Henson Productions/ ITC
Running time: 93 minutes

Return To Oz
Screenplay by Walter Murch & Gill Dennis, based on the books by L. Frank Baum
Directed by Walter Murch
Cast: Fairuza Balk, Nicol Williamson, Jean Marsh, Piper Laurie, Matt Clark
Produced by Silver Screen Partners II/ Walt Disney Pictures
Running time: 113 minutes

Friday: Foxes (1980)/ Over the Edge (1979)

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Foxes (1980)
Written by Gerald Ayres
Directed by Adrian Lyne
Cast: Jodie Foster, Sally Kellerman, Scott Baio, Cherie Currie, Marilyn Kagan, Kandice Stroh, Randy Quaid, Lois Smith
Produced by Casablanca Filmworks
Running time: 106 minutes

Over the Edge
Written by Charlie Haas & Tim Hunter
Directed by Jonathan Kaplan
Cast: Michael Eric Kramer, Pamela Ludwig, Matt Dillon, Tom Fergus, Vincent Spano, Harry Northup, Tiger Thompson, Andy Romano, Ellen Geer, Julia Pomeroy
Produced by Orion Pictures
Running time: 95 minutes

Saturday: Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978)/ The Thing (1982)

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Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978)
Screenplay by W.D. Richter, based on the novel by Jack Finney
Directed by Philip Kaufman
Cast: Donald Sutherland, Brooke Adams, Jeff Goldblum, Veronica Cartwright, Leonard Nimoy, Art Hindle
Produced by Solofilm/ United Artists
Running time: 115 minutes

The Thing
Screenplay by Bill Lancaster, based on the short story by John W. Campbell Jr.
Directed by John Carpenter
Cast: Kurt Russell, Wilford Brimley, T.K. Carter, David Clennon, Keith David, Ricahrd Dysart, Charles Hallahan, Peter Maloney, Richard Masur, Donald Moffat, Joel Polis, Thomas Waites
Produced by Turman-Foster Company/ David Foster Productions/ Universal Pictures
Running time: 109 minutes

Fellow curators of the overlooked and underappreciated:

Jeremy Richey at Moon In The Gutter
Alan Lopuszynski at Burbanked
Marilyn Ferdinand at Ferdy on Films, etc.
Moviezzz at The Moviezzz Blog
Megan Cahalan at All I Need Is Everything
Raquelle at Out of the Past

© Joe Valdez

Tags: Thoughts and theories

7 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Piper // Aug 1, 2008 at 8:19 am

    My word? Joe breaks format?

    Damn, had I known you would do this, I would have surely included you in the original folk.

    I am most intrigued by Monday night. Never seen Over The Edge or even heard of it.

    And you know I would be there the last night.

  • 2 Jeremy // Aug 1, 2008 at 11:27 am

    Great stuff Joe…thanks for participating. Several of these I would love to see on the big screen with special mention going to FOXES, a special film that I don’t see mentioned enough.

  • 3 James Hansen // Aug 1, 2008 at 12:20 pm

    Very excited to see FOXES and THE THING make the list! I honestly haven’t seen a whole lot of these…looks like a solid line up that I would love to check out though!

  • 4 Joe Valdez // Aug 1, 2008 at 2:19 pm

    Pat: I’m just trying to get into your Top 5 Friends. I hope this gets me closer to that goal. Actually, your meme was so close to what I already think about in terms of content that it was not much of a deviation. In the future, I hope to start profiling actors and actresses of the ’70s and ’80s as opposed to only movies.

    Jeremy: I think you understood the purpose of the meme best, which was not to rank the best double features, but to think up ones you would pay money to see on the big screen again. Many of my films were rendered in anamorphic widescreen and it would be a kick to see a 35mm film print with an audience, even if the movie itself has flaws. I’m thinking of The Dark Crystal in particular.

    James: Sometimes I think the public knows enough about John Carpenter’s The Thing, then I run into somebody who has never seen it. How anyone can propose Saw as one of the scariest movies ever made without seeing The Thing is a travesty. Thanks for commenting!

  • 5 Piper // Aug 1, 2008 at 3:29 pm


    Right now you’re hanging at 6 or 7. I don’t want to make any promises so close to election, but I could see you moving up in the near future.

    Actually, you’re right on that this meme fit right in. I like the quick synopsis you added of every film.

  • 6 Daniel // Aug 4, 2008 at 10:04 am

    Great picks here, Joe, and I’m glad you broke rank to give it a shot – clearly you have one of the best libraries (in your head) to choose from!

    Really happy to see Return to Oz and Top Secret in there.

  • 7 Joe Valdez // Aug 4, 2008 at 6:53 pm

    Daniel: Thanks as always for commenting and for your approbation of my retro taste. Since this article was such a success, I’m going to be breaking rank more frequently it looks like. Oh, Return To Oz, what an exquisite flick. The only fantasy film that’s even come close to being this good was Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.

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