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Monday, April 11, 2011

The Video Vangaurd pays tribute to director Sidney Lumet

This weekend marked the passing of a great filmmaker when Sidney Lumet died of lymphoma at the age of 86.  He is responsible for some of the great classics of our time.  The Video Vangaurd would like to give a passing tribute and reflect on some of his movies.  




12 Angry Men 1957


                                              (Theatrical Poster)


In a jury room twelve people are deciding the fate of a man accused of murder.  Eleven of the men believe him to be guilty, but one does not.  This Drama was nominated for three Academy Awards including Best Picture for it's depiction of race relations in America.   It is one of those great stories that have been told numerous times and has even been translated into other languages.


                                                 (Theatrical Trailer)



















Dog Day Afternoon 1975


                              (Theatrical Poster)


"Dog Day Afternoon"  is about  a hapless bank robber named Sonny Wortzik(Al Pacino) who becomes a celebrity unwillingly. Sidney Lumet makes a comment about the news media becoming like a circus as they cover the events of the robbery.  It's also one of the first movies that has gay characters in lead roles, and it doesn't treat them as villains or as comic jokes.


                                              (Theatrical Trailer)



















Network.  1976


                                          (Theatrical Poster)


"Network" is one of the best satires next to "Dr. Strangelove".  This is one of those rare movies that never feels dated and is more relevant today than when it was first released.  The way it predicted how T.V. shows and news programs would end up is both funny and frighteningly accurate.



(Academy Award Winners Peter Finch and Faye Dunaway in a scene from "Network")



















The Wiz  1978


                                              (Theatrical Poster)


Doing a blaxploitation version of "The Wizard Of Oz" is just plain genius.  Instead of doing a literal translation of the famed story.  This version  looks like it was made at Studio 54 and they just used some of the sets and the backup dancers. This results in the movie being a bit dated, but I find that to be oddly appealing.     I almost wish there could be more exploitation films of beloved classics. 



                                                  (Theatrical Trailer)




















Find Me Guilty  2006


                                                (Theatrical Poster)

This may surprise a lot of you, but Vin Diesel is a good actor.  He has made a good living doing action movies, but  the guy can take on more character driving roles when giving the chance.  Diesel portrays famed mobster  Jackie DiNorscio who chooses to defend himself while on trial.  It's one of those root for the underdog, fuck authority type movies that is just plain fun.  


                                                       (Trailer)




















                                              Sidney Lumet   1924 - 2011

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