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"You talking to me?" THE 70s COUNTDOWN IS DONE!

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Escape from Alcatraz (1979)


20 points, 8 lists

96% on rotten tomatoes with 24 reviews



Alcatraz was closed shortly after the true events on which the film was based. Screenwriter Richard Tuggle spent six months researching and writing a screenplay based on the 1963 non-fiction account by J. Campbell Bruce.[4] He went to the Writers Guild and received a list of literary agents who would accept unsolicited manuscripts. He submitted a copy to each, and also to anybody else in the business that he could cajole into reading it. Everyone rejected it, saying it had poor dialogue and characters, lacked a love interest, and that the public was not interested in prison stories. Tuggle decided to bypass producers and executives and deal directly with filmmakers. He called the agent for director Don Siegel and lied, saying he had met Siegel at a party and the director had expressed interest in reading his script. The agent forwarded the script to Siegel, who read it, liked it, and passed it on to Clint Eastwood.[5]


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Dersu Uzala (1975)


21 points, 3 lists, one having it in the top 5.

2012 Sight & Sound 1 critic, 4 directors



In an interview conducted for the 1999 RUSCICO DVD issue of the film, co-star Yuri Solomin stated that Kurosawa had long known of Arsenyev's book and had planned to make a film version very early in his career in the late 1930s, but had dropped the project after realising that it had to be made in the region where the events had actually taken place.


In 1971, Kurosawa attempted suicide during a bad period in his career, questioning his creative ability after the commercial failure of Dodes'ka-den the year before and the subsequent denial of funds for his productions by Japanese studios.[4] 


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Picnic at Hanging Rock (1975)


21 points, 5 lists

2012 Sight & Sound 2 critics, 3 directors



The novel was published in 1967. Reading it four years later, Patricia Lovell thought it would make a great film. She did not originally think of producing it herself until Phillip Adams suggested she try it; she optioned the film rights in 1973, paying $100 for three months.[4] She hired Peter Weir to direct on the basis of Homesdale and Weir brought in Hal and Jim McElroy to help produce.[1]


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Papillon (1973)


21 points, 6 lists, 1 top 5

83% on Rotten Tomatoes with 24 reviews



McQueen was paid $2 million along with the contractual stipulation that he receive first billing over Dustin Hoffman.[7] In addition, author Henri Charrière himself acted as consultant on location: he let the makers of the film know of the things he encountered during his years of imprisonment.


The Prison of St-Laurent-du-Maroni where Henri Charrière was held, and where most of the action takes place, was faithfully recreated using the original blueprints.[8] Footage of the historic Prison in French Guiana plays under the end credits, which is shown to be abandoned and covered in jungle growth.


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The Day of the Jackal (1973)



22 points, 4 lists, 2 top 10.

91% on rottentomatoes with 22 reviews



During the massive annual 14 July parade down the Champs-Élysées, the company was allowed to film inside the police lines, capturing extraordinary closeup footage of the massing of troops, tanks, and artillery during the final Liberation Day sequence. During the weekend of 15 August, the Paris police cleared a very busy square of all traffic to film additional scenes.[7][8]


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Phantasm (1979)


22 points, 5 lists, one top 10

Rated #25 on the cable channel Bravo!'s list of The 100 Scariest Movie Moments.



There were no accountants on the set, but Coscarelli estimates the budget at $300,000.[6] Funding for the film came in part from Coscarelli's father,[19] who was credited as the film's producer;[1] additional funding came from doctors and lawyers.[6] His mother designed some of the special effects,[19] costumes, and make-up.[6] The cast and crew were composed mainly of friends and aspiring professionals. Due to their inexperience, they did not realize that firing blanks could be dangerous; Coscarelli's jacket caught fire from a shotgun blank.[6] Casting was based on previous films that Coscarelli directed, and he created roles for those actors.[15] Because he could not afford to hire an editor or cameraman, Coscarelli did these duties himself.[20]



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Murder on the Orient Express (1974)




22 points, 6 lists

91% on Rotten Tomatoes with 34 reviews



Unsworth shot the film in Panavision. Interiors were filmed at Elstree Studios. Exterior shooting was mostly done in France in 1973, with a railroad workshop near Paris standing in for Istanbul station. The scenes of the train proceeding through central Europe were filmed in the Jura Mountains on the then-recently closed railway line from Pontarlier to Gilley, with the scenes of the train stuck in snow being filmed in a cutting near Montbenoît.[8] There were concerns about a lack of snow in the weeks preceding the scheduled shooting of the snowbound train, and plans were made to truck in large quantities of snow at considerable expense. However, heavy snowfall the night before the shooting made the extra snow unnecessary—just as well, as the snow-laden backup trucks had themselves become stuck in the snow.[9]



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The Rescuers



22 points, 7 lists, one top 10

Nominated for the Best Original Song Oscar


On January 8, 1999, three days after the film's second release on home video, The Walt Disney Company announced a recall of about 3.4 million copies of the videotapes because there was an objectionable image in one of the film's backgrounds.[30][31][32][33]

The image in question is a blurry image of a topless woman with breasts and nipples showing. The image appears twice in non-consecutive frames during the scene in which Miss Bianca and Bernard are flying on Orville's back through New York City. The two images could not be seen in ordinary viewing because the film runs too fast — at 24 frames per second.[34]

On January 10, 1999, two days after the recall was announced, the London newspaper The Independent reported:


A Disney spokeswoman said that the images in The Rescuers were placed in the film during post-production, but she declined to say what they were or who placed them... The company said the aim of the recall was to keep its promise to families that they can trust and rely on the Disney brand to provide the best in family entertainment.[35]

The Rescuers video was reissued March 23, 1999, with the inappropriate nudity edited and blocked out.




Edited by cannastop
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The Towering Inferno (1974)



22 points, 8 lists

Nominated for 8 Oscars, including Best Picture, winning 3 Oscars



McQueen, Newman, and William Holden all wanted top billing. Holden was refused, his long-term standing as a box office draw having been eclipsed by both McQueen and Newman. To provide dual top billing, the credits were arranged diagonally, with McQueen lower left and Newman upper right. Thus, each appeared to have "first" billing depending on whether the credit was read left-to-right or top-to-bottom.[19] This was the first time this "staggered but equal" billing was used in a movie although it had been considered earlier for the same two actors regarding Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid until McQueen turned the Sundance Kid role down. McQueen is mentioned first in the film's trailers. In the cast list rolling from top to bottom at the film's end, however, McQueen and Newman's names were arranged diagonally as at the beginning; as a consequence, Newman's name is fully visible first there.


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The Jerk (1979)


22 points, 9 lists

No. 89 on the American Film Institute list AFI's 100 Years...100 Laughs


By 1977, comedian Steve Martin was experiencing wild success. He wished to cross over to a film career, believing it promised more longevity.[3] Basing his film proposal on a line from his act — "It wasn't always easy for me; I was born a poor black child" — he fleshed out his ideas into a series of notes he intended to deliver to studios. With confidence in his budding standup career, he imagined it would not be difficult to break into Hollywood. Instead, he found it more difficult than expected.[3] Bill McEuen was acquainted with Paramount Pictures president David Picker, and passed along his notes, which the studio read carefully. It described a series of odd jobs lead character "Steve" would hold in his saga, but Paramount passed on the project.[4]


Edited by cannastop
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