Monday, May 21, 2007

Worth Your Valuable Time

If you're anything like me (and if you are, I'm deeply sorry), then you enjoy a good, ol' fashioned 70's cop movie. Especially if it's a 70's cop movie set in New York City, which automatically ups it's "cool points" by a factor of twenty. Which is not to say that a 70's cop movie set in, for example, Minneapolis/St. Paul can't be cool; I'm sure there's all kinds of gritty, horrible crime in and around the Twin Cities and a movie that exposes the frozen Midwest's seedy underbelly would be just fine as movies go. Still, when you've got a 70's cop movie set in New York City, you know you're dealing with a film that's just a little more high-class; kind of like when you order mineral water instead of regular tap water. Yes, they're both water, essentially, but mineral water has bubbles and, as we all know, bubbles equal class and distinction where water is concerned.
But I digress...
My point is, you can't beat a good New York City-set, 70's cop movie and, with that in mind, I'd like to suggest a title that I don't think a lot of people have seen. That movie (if you haven't figured it out from the large picture at the start of this post) is The Taking of Pelham 1-2-3.
See, it's about a group of thieves that hijack a subway train (specifically, the 6 train) and hold all it's passengers for ransom underground. Um... greatest concept ever? Quite possibly. This is doubly true if you happen to be one of the many people in the world who rely on the public transportation offered by a subway system. I'm sure there's not a one of us out there who hasn't thought of forcibly taking control of a train and demanding a large sum of money for it and it's cargo's safe return.
Am I right? Huh, am I... right?
Hm? Ah, it's just me then? Well then... forget I mentioned it. And, um, don't call the authorities.
The movie, though... you've got to see this movie. What's great about it is that it's not flashy, it's not ultra-violent and it's not action hero-y. For fuck's sake, the cop fighting the bad guys in Pelham is played by Walter Matthau! When you cast as your lead a man about as tough and menacing as a comfy leather chair, you've got to know you're dealing with a very different breed of thriller. The lead thief, by the by, is played by Robert Shaw (Quint from Jaws) and his creepy, evilness contrasts perfectly with Matthau's hilarious crankiness.
Anyway, I don't want to say too much more about it because I don't want to give anything away but, no joke kids, give this film a look-see.
NOTE: The cover-art for the current DVD release is very different from the above poster. I just like that poster, is why I used it. I'm sure you can figure it out.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Totally underrated movie; good call. Haven't seen it in a long time, though. Shame.

2:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think you implied that I was a pussy. GO FUCK YOURSELF, YOU FUCKIN' BLOGGER. Also, what's a blog exactly?

2:47 PM  
Blogger Big Daddy said...


Deja vu.

I just saw the remake on cable the other day.

3:31 PM  
Blogger Clinton said...

All I know about the remake is that it starred Edward James Olmos who, I think we can all agree, is no Walter Matthau. He is a fine, inspirational math teacher, however.

3:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I will kick Edward James Olmos's ASS!!!

3:49 PM  
Blogger Irish and Jew said...

Walter Matthau!!! Sweet! Is Jack Lemmon in it too??


4:00 PM  
Blogger Clinton said...

Sadly, no. Though there is plenty of Martin Balsam and Jerry Stiller. Also some Hector Elizando.

4:08 PM  
Blogger Big Daddy said...

Whatever happened to Chris Lemmon?

4:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hell yeah. I love this movie. For more 70s Matthau greatness check out Charlie Varrick.

4:19 PM  
Blogger Clinton said...

Big Daddy... I know he had some sort of drug problem at one point. Dunno; I'm sure he's still kicking around.

J... Haven't seen Charlie Varrick, but it's now on my Netflix queue. Thanks for the tip!

4:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This original is so great that they should have never made a remake.

Love this movie.

6:55 PM  
Blogger ellagood said...

someone read Time Out New York last week ;-)

1:06 AM  
Blogger Clinton said...

Beehive... Word. As is the case with most remakes, I've found.

Ellagood... No, actually, I just like 70's cop movies. But that's awesome that it's getting some attention. What'd they say about it?

8:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sure Edward's a good math teacher but I think we'd all agree he's a better commander for a rag-tag colony of the last/first humans searching for earth...
Also, NY in movies rocks in general but 70's era especially - so much better than living here... sigh.

10:34 AM  
Blogger Colleen said...

I've been meaning to see this for a long time. Netflix cue! Are you listening? Please update yourself!
70s movies rule.

5:28 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home