HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Shiva Baby
Flowers of Shanghai
War and Peace
Agony
Merrily We Go to Hell
Ellie & Abbie (& Ellie's Dead Aunt)
Amusement Park, The
Lemebel
Hands of Orlac, The
Cats
Death has Blue Eyes
Caveat
Kala Azar
Duplicate
Flashback
Gunda
After Love
Earwig and the Witch
Zebra Girl
Skull: The Mask
Vanquish
Bank Job
Drunk Bus
Homewrecker
State Funeral
Army of the Dead
Initiation
Redoubt
Dinner in America
Death Will Come and Shall Have Your Eyes
PG: Psycho Goreman
Maeve
Sound of Metal
Things of Life, The
Auschwitz Escape, The
Jungle Fever
Great White
Spy Who Came in from the Cold, The
Raya and the Last Dragon
Letter from Paris
   
 
Newest Articles
She's Evil! She's Brilliant! Basic Instinct on Blu-ray
Hong Kong Dreamin': World of Wong Kar Wai on Blu-ray
Buckle Your Swash: The Devil-Ship Pirates on Blu-ray
Way of the Exploding Fist: One Armed Boxer on Blu-ray
A Lot of Growing Up to Do: Fast Times at Ridgemont High on Blu-ray
Oh My Godard: Masculin Feminin on Blu-ray
Let Us Play: Play for Today Volume 2 on Blu-ray
Before The Matrix, There was Johnny Mnemonic: on Digital
More Than Mad Science: Karloff at Columbia on Blu-ray
Indian Summer: The Darjeeling Limited on Blu-ray
3 from 1950s Hollyweird: Dr. T, Mankind and Plan 9
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Tarka the Otter and The Belstone Fox
Network Double Bills: All Night Long and Ballad in Blue
Chew Him Up and Spit Him Out: Romeo is Bleeding on Blu-ray
British Body Snatchers: They Came from Beyond Space on Blu-ray
Bzzzt: Pulse on Blu-ray
The Tombs Will Be Their Cities: Demons and Demons 2 on Arrow
Somebody Killed Her Husband: Charade on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Maroc 7 and Invasion
Network Double Bills: The Best of Benny Hill and The Likely Lads
   
 
  King Cohen: The Wild World of Filmmaker Larry Cohen Maverick Movies
Year: 2017
Director: Steve Mitchell
Stars: Larry Cohen, J.J. Abrams, Rick Baker, Eric Bogosian, Barbara Carrera, Joe Dante, Robert Forster, Megan Gallagher, Yaphet Kotto, John Landis, Laurene Landon, Traci Lords, Michael Moriarty, Tara Reid, Eric Roberts, Martin Scorsese, Fred Williamson
Genre: DocumentaryBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: J.J. Abrams, now a successful filmmaker and television producer, recalls getting contacted by another filmmaker, Larry Cohen, when he noticed Abrams had one of his monsters from his horror It's Alive on a TV appearance, and wanted to ask him about it. Abrams pointed out they had met before, but he probably wouldn't remember, it was years ago on the street in New York and he was late for a meeting, asking him and his friend for directions. Turns out Larry did indeed remember, and could give him all the details of their brief meeting, even that he had been with Dom DeLuise's son. Just one story from the remarkable life of one of cinema's great mavericks...

If you're making a documentary about film, you really have two options, either make it akin to an essay with theorising and observations, maybe only from one authorial voice, or you could go the showbiz route and pack the piece with as many talking heads as possible, liberally applying famous faces, or at least names the interested viewer will recognise. This second option is the route director Steve Mitchell travelled for his Larry Cohen effort, a run down of his work, first in television and then in film, becoming what can be highly entertaining, the anecdote parade after the trail blazed by Mark Hartley and his Ozploitation and Cannon documentaries.

As expected after Hartley's cult successes, there were many who followed in his wake who realised that quite often film folks are flattered to be asked about their experiences, even when those experiences were pretty awful, and many are more than happy to be sat down in front of a camera to be interviewed as themselves, as opposed to being invited on a chat show when they have something to plug, which can be entertaining, but the publicity tours can also be a slog. Mitchell didn't find anyone with a bad word to say about Cohen, another reason why those chatting for him were delighted to be discussing him: the loyalty he engenders is noticeable from the first ten minutes.

Maybe we missed out on a more critical reading of Cohen's canon, a pity in a way since it could more than stand up to examination as his films are so often returned to decades after they were made thanks to the obvious intelligence in their themes, not something that everyone who made a horror flick in the seventies and eighties could claim. More than that was the trickster sensibility that turned musings over the environment, or politics, or religion, or consumerism, or whatever Cohen's mind had latched onto into material that never seemed out of place in the context of a genre item, so God Told Me To was addressing religion as science fiction, and The Stuff was consumerism as a horror, all his movies having the knack of a simple hook that can be summed up in one inspiring sentence.

This was touched upon, but mostly the tales were more about what a mensch Cohen was, a man of integrity who was willing to stick up for his scripts and ideas just as much as he was those who were employed by him: time and again we hear that he hired an out of work actor or crewmember who had been cast adrift by the industry, often because they were regarded as too old. Cohen had a genuine love of old movie stars, and would cast them as often as possible, hence the late career appearances of anyone from Bette Davis to Red Buttons to Broderick Crawford, and if that doesn't endear him to you as a movie buff, what will? Only Fred Williamson, star of his Black Caesar duo, gets a little testy, but in an amused way that enhances the subject's abundant reminiscences, everyone else makes us realise how lucky we were to have him creating his movies guerrilla style, like nothing else at the time or now, for that matter. We leave him as he is still writing away, every day, his inspiration never having run dry.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 1141 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
Andrew Pragasam
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
   

 

Last Updated: