Tag Archives: Robert Shaw

Joseph Losey’s Figures In A Landscape

A menacing black helicopter relentlessly pursued two mysterious escapees through the harsh landscape of an unnamed foreign land. Such is the slightly surreal setup for Joseph Losey’s Figures In A Landscape, a strange, forgotten allegorical adventure film starring Robert Shaw and Malcolm McDowell. Less is more storytelling takes charge with a screenplay by Shaw himself, as very little is told to us about who these men are, what the setting and political climate is or why that big black bird won’t stop gunning for them, at one point staging a maneuver so hair raising the propellers almost take someone’s head clean off. The unspecified region here is actually Spain, and the photography is flat out gorgeous, stunning wide shots and sweeping vistas seemingly shot from the chopper itself, sprawling vineyards, dry acrid valleys and snowy mountain peaks are all captured in a film that would work as a travelogue ad for Spain if the story wasn’t so grim. Shaw is the salty, old fashioned badass who can’t keep his mouth shut and gets his hands dirty when needed, McDowell the sensitive youngster in over his head and struggling with both the chase and the elements. As the film progresses their dynamics shift though, which is fascinating to see through their two excellent performances. The climax set high atop a mountain somewhere is bloody poetic bliss and serves as both a fitting end to a well mounted thriller and an ambiguous enough wrap up for a story that’s just ‘out there’ enough to defy genre expectations. This one really has been lost to the sands of time, but luckily Kino Lorber recently remastered it for Blu Ray and it’s really something to see if you’re a fan of Shaw, McDowell, oddball films that slipped through the cracks or high adventure. Definitely recommended.

-Nate Hill

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For Your Ears Only: FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE

Image result for from russia with love poster

Returning for our next installment of our James Bond series, For Your Ears Only,  Frank and Podcasting Them Softly’s James Bond expert, Tom Zielinski, are joined with fellow Bond aficionado, Paul Sparrow-Clarke.

PTS Presents Producer’s Notes with EVZEN KOLAR

KOLAR POWERCAST

KOLARPodcasting Them Softly is incredibly proud to be joined with veteran producer Evzen Kolar whose credits include STREET SMART, the epic Cannon Film’s MASTERS OF THE UNIVRSE, DOUBLE IMPACT, SURF NINJAS, and a film that was made to be a featured film on Pocasting Them Softly, the 1997 hardnosed neo noir CITY OF INDUSTRY.  Evzen also produced the soundtrack that is a must own for any cinephile soundtrack junkie!  Before becoming a producer, Evzen worked as an assistant director, a unit manager on NEVER SAY NEVER AGAIN, and he has also done some stunt work.  Unknown to us prior, Evzen is married to Robert Shaw’s daughter, and we spend a fair amount of time talking about Robert Shaw!