1943, Cohen Film, 134 min, USA, Dir: Fritz Lang

Bertolt Brecht co-wrote this story about a Czech man (Brian Donlevy) on the run after killing a brutal SS officer during the Nazi occupation. Frequent Brecht collaborator Hanns Eisler supplied the Oscar-nominated score, and cinematographer James Wong Howe gave this tense thriller plenty of noir atmosphere. With Gene Lockhart and Walter Brennan.

JOE (1970)
1970, Park Circus/MGM, 107 min, USA, Dir: John G. Avildsen

A low-budget indie film shot over a month and a half in the winter of 1970, JOE traces the adversarial relationship between a white-collar father (Dennis Patrick) and his hippie daughter (a debuting Susan Sarandon). After a confrontation with her grungy partner (Patrick McDermott), the traumatized patriarch winds up at a bar, where he befriends working-class Joe (Peter Boyle), who is a fount of caustic barbs against the counterculture. The pair bond and set out on an odyssey that concludes in nightmarish carnage at a rural commune. Re-editing the film around Boyle's performance and even releasing a soundtrack album devoted to his diatribes, original distributor Cannon not only made JOE box-office gold, but turned Boyle himself into a star.

THX 1138
1971, Warner Bros., 88 min, USA, Dir: George Lucas

George Lucas' first (and most adult) picture outdoes 1984 and Brave New World in painting a bleak, dehumanized future where every person is given pills to quiet emotions, eliminate sex drive, increase work production and prevent the questioning of authority. With Robert Duvall, Donald Pleasance.

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