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 Posted:   Apr 18, 2014 - 2:20 PM   
 By:   Mr. Marshall   (Member)

SORCERER, starring Roy Scheider is being revived this week at The Castro in SF.

Two seperate sources have acknowledged it bombed on initial release but claim - with no proof- that it is now recognized as a "neglected masterpiece with a "cult following".

Say what? First off, its a remake of a far superior film, Clouzot's WAGES OF FEAR which despite its lame "ironic" twist ending IS a classic.

TELL ME I'M WRONG (not you Thor - i am sure you love it wink )
bruce

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 18, 2014 - 2:37 PM   
 By:   Thor   (Member)

He, he...I do indeed. Some superb atmosphere in this film. Friedkin's best after THE EXORCIST, in my opinion. Brilliant score too, although more in the film than on album.

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 18, 2014 - 2:37 PM   
 By:   eriknelson   (Member)

I saw SORCERER during its initial run and liked it very much. Compared to Clouzot, the atmosphere of this film is far darker and depressing, covering subject matter that wasn't allowed in Clouzot's day. But I wouldn't call it a classic. As I recall Scheider turns in a good performance.

 
 Posted:   Apr 18, 2014 - 2:46 PM   
 By:   Francis   (Member)

Friedkin has been doing screenings prior to the blu-ray release of this movie, I've seen the new transfer and it is stunning. Gone is the muddy full frame image of the antequated DVD! Also, according to Friedkin he claims his version is based on the novel rather than the existing french movie. It is a great movie to watch in the theater and the TD score (to which Friedkin edited his sequences) is so hypnotically cool. Best road movie ever! big grin

 
 Posted:   Apr 18, 2014 - 3:32 PM   
 By:   Mark R. Y.   (Member)

WAGES and SORCERER are both classics - they shouldn't be compared side to side, but rather viewed as variations on a similar premise.

 
 Posted:   Apr 18, 2014 - 4:24 PM   
 By:   welwynfilmstudios   (Member)

Review of the blu ray release.

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film4/blu-ray_reviews_61/sorcerer_blu-ray.htm

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 19, 2014 - 5:14 PM   
 By:   Richard-W   (Member)

A favorite of mine from the 1970s. SORCERER is burdened with an inappropriate title and a major storytelling flaw. The backstories of how the drivers come to the isolated jungle town is too long and the "drive" through the jungle is too short. Nevertheless, the film is visually inspired, generates some intense atmosphere, tension, and suspense, and is well-acted. While it does not compare well to the first adaptation by Henri-Georges Clouzot -- one of the cinema's maestros -- I think it is a classic in its own way.

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 20, 2014 - 3:06 PM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

Horrible title, but not a bad film. (The film opened in Paris as "Convoy of Fear.") The majority of filming was scheduled for the Dominican Republic in “40,000 acres of primeval forest,” according to the 12 April 1976 issue of Boxoffice. However, a 12 October 1976 Los Angeles Herald-Examiner news item reported that due to the end of the rainy season in the Dominican Republic, the production was forced to move to Mexico, and “delays and temperament” had doubled the budget from $9 million to $18 million. The New York Times estimated the final cost to be as high as $21 to 23 million.

Co-distributors Universal and Paramount were unable to agree on who would be domestic distributor, so they split the country, with Paramount taking east of the Mississippi River, and Universal taking the west. The film played some venues with a three-and-a-half-minute overture, but that has not appeared on any video version of the film.

SORCERER opened in Los Angeles and New York on 24 June 1977 at 121 minutes. Friedkin made sure he had final cut on the film's domestic release, but did not specifically request it for foreign distribution. As a result, for the film's foreign releases the opening prologues were either cut, greatly shortened or incorporated into the body of the picture as flashbacks. On 15 February 1978, Variety published a statement from Friedkin, who objected to the extensive re-editing by Cinema International Corp. (CIC), including cutting twenty-nine minutes from the film for its international release. The director labeled this version “mutilated” and “no longer representative of the film I have made.” A 14 March 1978 Los Angles Times article stated the film had been trimmed by forty-eight minutes.

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 21, 2014 - 3:36 AM   
 By:   Doug Raynes   (Member)

I saw SORCERER under the title WAGES OF FEAR when it first opened in London and hated it. It was extremely tedious. I didn't know then that London saw a re- edited version with 30 minutes cut so I'd be interested in seeing the original version. Even so, I doubt very much that it is a " masterpiece" or in any way comparable with Clouzot's brilliant, powerful, film. The internet has made me realise that just about every film has it's share of cult followers.

 
 Posted:   Apr 21, 2014 - 12:19 PM   
 By:   jackfu   (Member)

I can’t help but think people went to see it motivated by name recognition:
1 – William Friedkin
2 – Roy Scheider
3 – Sorcerer
Or, #4 - the poster. All of these were fairly compelling reasons.
I always have a soft spot in my heart for films with relatively unknowns as leads. While Scheider certainly wasn’t an unknown after Jaws (or less likely The French connection or The Seven Ups), he still wasn’t yet as well-known as Brando or Wayne, etc.
It’s another movie with characters with whom audiences have difficulty identifying. None of them are really that likeable nor sympathetic. And like films such as The Shining, there was so much focus on imagery that either folks loved it for that, or hated it for the huge plot holes that you were supposed to overlook to enjoy that focus. I enjoy the move very much and will definitely order the blu-ray. Thanks!

 
 Posted:   Apr 21, 2014 - 4:30 PM   
 By:   Mr. Marshall   (Member)

One can not help but think that the "reappraisal" is just lazy journalism,
i.e. press release material masquerading as news .
Put out an old film that bombed and claim it was "ahead of its time' undervalued, overlooked
etc. and some will take the bait.

There are indeed films that "bombed' (in the USA at least) but went on to become regarded as classics:
ONCE UPON A TIME IN THE WEST
BLADE RUNNER
are 2 good examples (both were tampered with also).

There are folks out there who are claiming classic status for HEAVEN'S GATE
and REVOLUTION {sorry, that aint gonna happen!}

Fools!
smile

bruce

 
 Posted:   Apr 21, 2014 - 4:31 PM   
 By:   Mr. Marshall   (Member)

BTW the score is pretTy boring, not even close to the best Tangerine Dream MUSIC

 
 Posted:   Apr 21, 2014 - 4:33 PM   
 By:   Mr. Marshall   (Member)

WAGES and SORCERER are both classics - they shouldn't be compared side to side, but rather viewed as variations on a similar premise.


WRONG!
smile
BRM

 
 Posted:   Apr 21, 2014 - 4:34 PM   
 By:   Mr. Marshall   (Member)

.....according to Friedkin he claims his version is based on the novel rather than the existing french movie. ]

...and you believe him???!!!!

 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2014 - 5:22 AM   
 By:   Francis   (Member)

.....according to Friedkin he claims his version is based on the novel rather than the existing french movie. ]

...and you believe him???!!!!


Well, I should have clarified that he states he actually didn't read the book but took the premise as a starting point for his version (the rights to it also became available round the time he did it). I'm sure he was aware of the french movie but let's be honest here, this is not a remake of that movie by far. As for it being a classic... I would call the movie Friedkin did before it, "The Exorcist" a classic, and if you judge movies by their box office success, then Exorcist would be a huge classic for sure. Sorcerer I personally don't consider a classic, more a cult film that after its box office disappointment and critic's disapproval found an audience as well as a new found appreciation by critics. Had Sorcerer been the 'bomb' you describe, we wouldn't be talking about it today and it certainly wouldn't find an audience for a restored version. The studio wanted nothing more than to bury this film lol.

As for the Tangerine Dream music, keep this in mind. Friedkin took a chance on them after having heard their music while in Europe for promotion of The Exorcist. He also stated had he known them before, he would have asked them to score Exorcist. Sorcerer is basically TD's first American movie they scored and he deemed their music so good he edited his sequences to it. For a movie from 1977 which is basically a thriller about 4 men risking whatever lives they have left, I imagine this choice of music at the time being very novel. I saw "Only God Forgives" last year and to me Cliff Martinez' music sounded a lot like what TD did for Sorcerer and the themes of both movies are not that dissimilar. That was last year. So for me this approach was ahead of its time. I doubt that had Star Wars been released later it would have made much difference, the audience was not waiting for Sorcerer, nor any remake of 'Wages of Fear'.

Sorcerer is also more than just a movie about 4 guys driving trucks with dynamite through a difficult terrain. It is part product of its time but also still very topical, in Friedkin's own words "I believed that the story was timeless because it involved four guys who are basically enemies but who had to work together or blow up," Friedkin said. "It seemed to me that that was a metaphor for the world, and still is. You have all these countries that either have to find a way to come together and cooperate or the world will be destroyed."
He also states:
"There are just things over which we have no control, and that's one of the themes of 'Sorcerer,'" Friedkin said. "It's the main theme — that no matter how difficult your struggle is, there's no guarantee of a successful outcome."
It's that last statement that I personally find makes the movie and its score so effective, as to me, like the glycerine on those sticks of dynamite, that theme perspires throughout it all. smile

This movie continues to fascinate me, I will revisit it many times on blu-ray and soundtrack album!

 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2014 - 11:31 AM   
 By:   jackfu   (Member)

Where would you rate it on the "Top Sweaty Movies of All Time"?

 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2014 - 12:21 PM   
 By:   Francis   (Member)

Where would you rate it on the "Top Sweaty Movies of All Time"?

Right after Predator? big grin

 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2014 - 12:50 PM   
 By:   jackfu   (Member)

Where would you rate it on the "Top Sweaty Movies of All Time"?

Right after Predator? big grin



I second that emotion!!! wink

Followed closely by Apocalypse Now?

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2014 - 1:08 PM   
 By:   MikeP   (Member)

BTW the score is pretTy boring, not even close to the best Tangerine Dream MUSIC



 
 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2014 - 2:12 PM   
 By:   CinemaScope   (Member)

I never saw it. I'd like to, but not enough to import the Blu-ray, still, now they have an HD transfer it should show up on the telly sometime.

 
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