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Something good on AMC

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The restored version of The Good, the Bad and the Ugly will show on AMC Saturday, May 10th at 8 p.m. uncut and without commercials as part of their Film Preservation Festival (with a number of repeats throughout the month). It features scenes which were never shown in the US with new english vocal tracks recorded by Clint Eastwood and Eli Wallach. This DVD Savant article goes into details on the restoration which was made possible with financing from AMC.

The film screened as part of the Tribeca Film Festival and will open at the Film Forum in NYC on May 30, the Nuart in LA on June 20th, the Castro in SF in June, and probably a few other cities. MGM’s archivist John Kirk said at the San Francisco International Film Festival that a DVD probably wouldn’t come out until at least 2005 (the release list which he has no input into is set through the end of 2004), so have a tape or lots of TiVo space ready. The 1998 DVD does have the additional footage in Italian as an extra

AMC will also show The Eiger Sanction, High Plains Drifter, and Joe Kidd. Back when I had cable, AMC was my favorite channel. Since then, they’ve added commercials and moved away from classic films. So this is the rare case when AMC is as good as TCM (which is showing another classic western, The Magnificent Seven on Sunday at 6 p.m.).

I also saw Dennis Lehane read from Shutter Island in San Francisco on Thursday. He said he had just seen Eastwood’s adaptation of his novel Mystic River and it was wonderful. It is very close to his novel (so if the movie fails, he is the one to blame). He was on the set most days and was consulted frequently. His only reservation was the Boston accents, but only natives would notice it. Otherwise, the cast which includes Sean Penn, Tim Robbins, Kevin Bacon, Laurence Fishburne, Marcia Gay Harden, and Laura Linney is wonderful. It is showing at Cannes and will be in theaters in September.

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