JOHNNY GOT HIS GUN
1971, Shout Factory, 111 min, USA, Dir: Dalton Trumbo

Dalton Trumbo not only wrote but directed this fiercely powerful cry of anguish against the legions of aggression - the ultimate anti-war film. Joe (Timothy Bottoms), a foot soldier during WWI, loses his legs, arms and most of his face in an explosion. He awakes in a hospital and slowly becomes aware that not only is he imprisoned in a shell of a body but also the doctors think he is a vegetable. Through a series of flashbacks involving his father (Jason Robards), his fiancee and his fantasy encounters with Jesus Christ (Donald Sutherland), we learn about Joe’s character. As Joe’s hospital stay lengthens, he develops a friendship with a sympathetic nurse (Diane Varsi). “Trumbo has taken the most difficult sort of material - and handled it, strange to say, in a way that's not so much anti-war as pro-life. Perhaps that's why I admire it. Instead of belaboring ironic points about the ‘war to end war,’ Trumbo remains stubbornly on the human level. He lets his ideology grow out of his characters, instead of imposing it from above.” - Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times.


ROLLERCOASTER
1977, Universal, 119 min, USA, Dir: James Goldstone

If you’ve ever heard rails creak beneath you on an amusement park ride, you can appreciate the potential for disaster on a rollercoaster; throw a mad bomber into the mix and the excitement is non-stop! One of two features penned by prolific TV writer-producers Richard Levinson and William Link, ROLLERCOASTER stars George Segal as a chain-smoking ride inspector who goes up against psychopathic extortionist Timothy Bottoms. Henry Fonda and Richard Widmark lend support in this underrated suspense thriller, which includes the big-screen debuts of Helen Hunt and Steve Guttenberg, as well as a performance by cult rockers Sparks.


THE LAST PICTURE SHOW
1971, Sony Repertory, 118 min, USA, Dir: Peter Bogdanovich

Jeff Bridges, Timothy Bottoms and Cybill Shepherd star as a trio of sexually confused teens trapped in a dying, dust-blown town. Flawlessly directed by Peter Bogdanovich and photographed by Robert Surtees, with a letter-perfect supporting cast led by Ben Johnson (Best Supporting Actor Oscar winner), Cloris Leachman (Best Supporting Actress Oscar winner) and Ellen Burstyn.


Syndicate content