Feb 7, 2006

Shark! (1970)


That lovable, cigar-munching mad genius Sam Fuller was so incensed that the Mexican producers butchered his cut of this movie (filmed under the title CAINE), he ordered his name removed from the credits. Eventually, the movie came out as SHARK!, possibly sank like a stone, but has been a perennial title for years on cheapo public domain video labels. In fact, when Cinematheque ran the Sam Fuller retrospective in 1998, this was the only title not programmed, perhaps out of respect for the director's disdain for this project.

Well, whatever Fuller's intentions were for this film originally, still, you know, I kinda like it. It's no masterpiece, but it isn't a bad little adventure full of the grit and sweat you would expect in anything by this madman. Burt Reynolds is actually rather good as an adventurer who is hired to get some gold buried on the gulf floor surrounded by maneating sharks. Featured in the cast are Barry Sullivan and Arthur Kennedy... but no-one has a character named Griff! Ah well... There's even a kid sidekick (perhaps an influence on confessed Fuller fan Steven Spielberg for INDIANA JONES AND THE TEMPLE OF DOOM), a climax that's almost as wild as that of DEAD PIGEON ON BEETHOVEN STREET (the key word is... almost).. and lots of not-bad underwater action.

It's no great shakes, but it's a pleasant reminder of the kind of undemanding stuff we would still devour like cotton candy at 3 AM watching "The Cat's Pajamas" on Buffalo's TV 2!

Cut n Paste

Hi folks, welcome back to ESR Journal for 2006!

Sorry for the neglect over the past couple of months, but with shows shows shows in the fall, the holiday season, Florida and then having an awful cold, we're finally back among the living. I guess what better way to start than with... the first venue of 2006.

Stacey Case once again had Cut n Paste this year at Sneaky Dee's. After an astonishingly underattended fair last year, I'm happy to report that there were lots of vendors and traffic this year. Alas, not too many sales for ESR, but that's okay, because C&P is probably the most fun venue I attend each year- it is still by far the most unique independent culture fair I set up shop at annually. A diverse mix of stuff, with an interesting mix of underground vendors both new and veteran. As usual, Mr. Case had a pile of Mexican lobby cards for sale- I picked up a few and will be posting them in the near future (I need a big enough scanner!!!)

Thanks to our pal Dion Conflict for taking this photo of yours truly holding one of our wonderful DVD's. And congrats once again to Stacey-- already looking forward to CnP 2007!

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