August 11, 2009

Two-Lane Blacktop

We were searching for a movie at the video store the other night, browsing the "new classics" section and hoping to find a '70s gem that we'd never heard of but would fast become one of our favorites. As soon as Derek picked up Two-Lane Blacktop and we recognized both Dennis Wilson and James Taylor on the cover, we knew we had a winner.

Two-Lane Blacktop the story of a cross-country car race, starring the kings of cool, James Taylor as "The Driver" and Dennis Wilson as "The Mechanic". First of all, seeing those two on screen, acting so effortlessly was amazing. Second, the story, the cinematography and the styling were incredible- and after we'd watched the entire film plus all the extras, we found out that Criterion issued their DVD version in 2007, so we're in for even more behind the scenes goodies when we decide to rent that one! I'm not going to give anything away- I'll just leave you with these photos and hopefully you'll check it out for yourself.

Laurie Bird as "The Girl"

Dennis Wilson as "The Mechanic"


Dubiding My Time said...

Hi L&D-- hope you're both great.

Will Cory, co-author of Two Lane Blacktop, worked as a Grip in LA and was a friend and mentor of my Dad's.

A few interesting things about the late great Mr. Cory:

1. Broken hearted by the failure of his marriage, he decided to hoof it from California to the East Coast, sleeping outside and avoiding small town sheriffs, many of whom, upon spotting his scruffy hide, would escort him to the county line. As I recall, upon arriving in Florida, he was immediately called back to California to reclaim custody of his baby daughter who he raised from there on.

2. He wrote a memoir about crossing the Atlantic with his daughter in their sailboat, the book is called Voyage of the Sealion, and I confess that I haven't read it-- yet.

3. Will worked as crew on the Elvis film, Blue Hawaii, according to Will: "Elvis was as nice a guy as you'd want to meet, but dumber than snot."

I've never seen all of Two Lane Blacktop, but Will was a bit of a legend around my household growing up. Wonder if I can rent it in Dubai?

Ma' Alsalam,


Another Kristin said...

I saw "Two Lane Blacktop" at the Red Vic about 10 years ago; that movie was great! I also really liked Warren Oates. (Though I'm not sure I'd call James Taylor's acting "effortless," quite. ;-)

Anonymous said...

I was a friend of Will's. I met him when he moved to Oregon and spent a lot of time with him. He was a great guy that really could tell some great stories. He was in the process of finishing up his boat "OX" when he passed. I miss him and think of him often.