“The Good the Bad and the Ugly” returns to Film Forum, August 29 – September 4

Eli Wallach and Clint Eastwood in “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” (1966)

Back by popular demand, following sold out screenings at its recent “Spaghetti Westerns” series, Film Forum presents director Sergio Leone’s Spaghetti Western masterpiece “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” (1966) in a restored DCP (Digital Cinema Package) version.   TGTBTU will run from August 29 – September 4.

If you have not seen TGTBTU on the big screen all I can say is “go.”  It is tremendous fun and one of my favorite movies.  Plus, Film Forum’s screening is a rare opportunity to experience it under ideal circumstances.  DCP means is that TGTBTU will be screened in high definition video, projected from a hard drive, as opposed to a traditional 35mm film print.

While digital screenings may not seem remarkable to the average moviegoer, it is remarkable for Film Forum.  The repertory side of Film Forum prides itself on showing only 35mm film prints of older movies, many of which are brand new.  The reason for Film Forum’s commitment to 35mm is that this is the way these films were meant to be seen.   Film Forum’s decision to show a classic film in the newer, digital format, the way almost all theatres now screen current movies, could be seen as a break with tradition.  On the other hand, it is an acknowledgement that the digital format has made great strides in quality, especially when it comes to the restoration of older movies.  Film Forum has made it very clear that DCP will not be replacing 35mm prints at Film Forum.

Formats aside, I have TGTBTU on DVD but never miss the chance to see it on a big screen. Leone’s innovative use of the wide screen, close-ups, long shots, brilliant editing and Ennio Morricone score are jaw dropping.  Even if you have not seen this movie before its style has become so iconic that it will be recognizable.

You cannot ask for a better cast.  The film stars Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef and Eli Wallach as three men who keep running into conflict with each other, as well as the armies of the Civil War, as they search for buried gold.  Eastwood reprises his role as “The Man with No Name,” from Leone’s “A Fist Full of Dollars” (1964) and “For a Few Dollars More” (1965).  Eastwood and co-star Lee Van Cleef, are the epitome of cool as “The Good” and “The Bad” respectively. That having been said, make no mistake that this movie belongs to “The Ugly,” Eli Wallach.   Wallach’s funny, scheming, amoral Mexican bandit Tuco steals every one of his scenes…at gunpoint.

Film Forum is located at 209 West Houston Street.  For more information go to http://www.filmforum.com.




About unpaidfilmcritic

Up until 2009 Seth Shire spent nearly two decades in the New York film industry as a post production supervisor of feature films. Highlights include working on the films of Martin Scorsese, James Toback and Spike Lee. Since leaving the film industry Seth has expanded into new and varied areas where he has found a great deal of satisfaction. Seth currently teaches in the Sociology Department of CUNY Queens College. His courses include "Mass Media and Popular Culture," "Introduction to Sociology," and "Sociology of Cinema" where he is a very popular teacher. Seth is also the film critic for "Town & Village," a Manhattan weekly newspaper, a position he has held for the past six years. Seth gives back to his community through volunteer teaching at Manhattan's "The Caring Community," a center for senior citizens, where he teaches a very popular course on documentaries called "The Golden Age of the Documentary. In the fall of 2010 Seth taught "Critical Reading and Writing" at Parsons School of Design. He has also taught "Cinema Studies" at the New York Film Academy. Seth lives in Stuyvesant Town, in Manhattan.

Posted on August 27, 2012, in Classics, Feature Articles, Film Forum and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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