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Added by The Mighty Celestial on 20 Apr 2013 11:41
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20 From 72: My Favorite Films Of 1972

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People who added this item 115 Average listal rating (68 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 7
    We start this list off with what is just one in a multitude of entries into the series of films known as blaxploitation, a then burgeoning genre that was exploding onto urban city movie theaters throughout the early 70's. I’ll be honest here, even though I had heard about these kinds of films as I was growing up, I never paid them much attention, mostly because they had quite the reputation of being cheap and campy but with a bit of street side grit peppered on ‘em. It wasn't until the release of 1997's Jackie Brown, Quentin Tarantino's homage to the genre, that my curiosity was finally piqued. I really enjoyed JB and I absolutely loved the song that played at the end of it, so I decided to look it up. The song was Across 110th Street, which, since it was the title song to this movie, made me want watch the film as well. And even though the limitations of the budget and the lack of production luster were quite evident, the rough edges and blunt presentation of the story gave the movie the kind of street cred respectability that opened my eyes to a new form of legitimate storytelling.
  Thus began a long personal quest of searching and viewing all the standard titles that came with the blaxpoitation genre (and then some).

 Who knew that after I watched this film, what I would find Across 110th Street was an interest towards a genre of films that depicted the upstart street struggles of “The Brutha Man “ against downtrodding machinations of “The Otha Man”.
People who added this item 10 Average listal rating (3 ratings) 6.3 IMDB Rating 7.7

   Before there was Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, streaming services, or even the internet, the only options for watching movies that were not made in the corporate Hollywood system were those that were made for television. Another option was porn movies but that’s a discussion for another site altogether. Here on Listal, we'll keep the subject of discussion towards the made for TV movies. And as someone who grew up as a kid during the 70s, I must admit that I have a real soft spot in my heart for horror movies that were made as a result of this independent and inexpensive process of filmmaking.
  Because of the countless cache of crap that were continually being cranked out during this decade, most of ‘em were crafted at a level that seems like the writers who got their "writer's license" right out of the seventh grade, and only a very few are worthy of any kind of note.
  The Night-Stalker is such a movie (which eventually would become a TV series)and that is why I'm including it here on this, despite it was made for the small screen at home instead of the big screen at the cinema.
 Following a ne'er-do-well reporter, Carl Kolchak, as he investigates a series of vampiresque style murders, this is story that never goes too over the top, but does have just enough of a touch of camp, a few dabs of bad monster make-up and a pinch of seventies kitsch. Which is a recipe that crosses over to the dark side of a fine line and make it into my personal cache of warm happy childhood memories. Particularly when it comes to those memories of me waking up in the middle of the night screaming because the latest "movie of the week" was a horror film.
People who added this item 1069 Average listal rating (582 ratings) 7.1 IMDB Rating 7
If you're like Paula Dean and have a passionate love for butter, this might be the flick for you.

Okay, let's get this part out of the way now...
This movies has alot of sex in it. And it's abrasive.
I mean, y'know, maybe not as much or as hardcore as other such controversial films of today, but for it's time, it had enough to raise more than just an eyebrow or two. Hell, it had enough to probably raise a few erections too.
But, whatever. The truth is, this is a movie directed by Bernado Bertolucci and starring the best actor living at the time. Two individuals who, between the two of 'em, bring a quality level of artistic workmanship and highest caliber acting to give such an emotionally raw picture such as this one it's reason for being. There's enough richness it's production and spacious room in it's storytelling that the viewer can make his or her decision on whether this Parisian tango is an erotic dance or just plain filth.

People who added this item 104 Average listal rating (42 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 7
Jumping the gun and tying the knot, a young salesman quickly finds himself honeymooning in a beach resort immediately after his shotgun wedding. But after his neo-bride is self-quarantined with a bout of severe sunburn, he stumbles upon the woman of his dreams. And since, as the song goes, it's sad to belong to someone else when the right one comes along, the newlywed has to decide between being a devoted husband or becoming a heartbreak kid.

People who added this item 355 Average listal rating (238 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 7.4
The Getaway (1972)
The king of sixties cool teams up with the queen of 70's sappy corn (that one chick from Love Story) in a on-the lam action crime film, the Getaway.
In it, they play characters who are trying to...well, y'know....get away. Particularly from that one guy who go shot in the head in The Godfather.

After starring in one of the classic car chase films of all time, Bullitt, Steve McQueen finds himself behind the wheel of another fast and furious flick.
Oh okay, maybe it's not as fast or as furious as more traditional car flicks of this timeframe.
The truth is, all those responsible for fuelng this vehicle, McQ, Ali McGraw and even director Sam Peckinpah seem to have all their talents shifted in nuetral more than in first gear, thus preventing Getaway from matching the speed of it's 60's classic predecessor.
Therefore, while overall, it's not a bad film, the fact that it was released in the midst of a decade filled with a myriad of higher octane films, the Getaway may tend to feel a bit watered down.

People who added this item 185 Average listal rating (117 ratings) 7.1 IMDB Rating 7.7
Lady Barbra teams up with that one guy from Love Story in a screwball comedy that's named after a wascally wabbit's most famous phwase.

After I put this movie on this list I realized that I hadn't put up any farce films since back from the 50's. It seems like either there very few made during the period between then and 1972, or just that I didn't find any of funny up until this point. Either way, it was refreshing to finally not only be able to post one up, but also, to see that the main stars of WUD? are two actors who developed reputations during this decade for being in more "serious" and/or sappy romance flicks.
And of course, there's only one way to end an entry for a movie named after a famous Bugs Bunny catch-phrase...

Th-th-th-th-that's all, folks.
People who added this item 179 Average listal rating (98 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 7.3
Fat City (1972)
After a career that pretty much went nowhere, an aging boxer finds himself inspired to get back in shape and back in the game. But this ain't no Rocky sequel (or maybe that should be prequel since this came out several years before Sly ever put on the gloves). In the "reel" world, dreams rarely come true. Especially when the fight is outside of the ring and the opponents take on the form of personal demons.
Responsible for reigniting legendary director John Huston's career, Fat City is a film that is inspiring not so much in it's storyline as it is in it's honesty and uncompromised performances of it's entire cast of secondary type of characters.

People who added this item 335 Average listal rating (224 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 7.2
Along with many fans of these early Bruce Lee flix, I was often confused with the titles between this movie and The Big Boss. While this one was regularly referred to as Fist Of Fury, Boss was known as Fists Of Fury. Adding to the confusion was the fact the Fists (plural) came before Fist (singular). For the sake of sequential sense, you'd think the the plural would come after the singular. But the truth is, this was all due to a mix-up that occurred in the translation during the distribution of these movies to the U.S.. So, nowadays, it's just easier to refer to these films by their original Chinese names. At least, fot me, it is.
But whatever you wanna call 'em,
the one thing that does not get confused is that both films contain fists that fly with the kind of fury that only the one true master of martial arts can dish out.

People who added this item 640 Average listal rating (369 ratings) 8.1 IMDB Rating 8.1
I'm usually not a big fan of period pieces, but every once in a while, a petticoat or two does find a way to creep silently into one of my lists of film faves.
A dying woman in the 1800s spends her final days in a family mansion with her two sisters. Hopelessly trying to find some connection with her two siblings, emotional comforts seems to come only in the form of the hired help.
Even after dreamily returning after her death, when it comes to facing one's mortality, it's seems like strengthening the bonds between the family requires more that crossing interdimensional distances.

People who added this item 201 Average listal rating (133 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 7.5
Robert Redford takes his perfect good looks and tries to convince us that he is a mountain man who tries to live the solitude life of a hunter hermit.
If it wasn't for those pesky Indians getting in the way of his solitude.
Maybe if they would've had the internet back then, he could have spent his lonely existence coming up with inane lists and putting 'em up here on this site rather than getting into tiffs with the local natives.

People who added this item 148 Average listal rating (75 ratings) 6.5 IMDB Rating 6.4

Back during 70's cinema, asians had a superhero who wore nunchakus around his neck and had raging fists of fury. His name was Bruce Lee.
On the Caucasian front, there was a superhero who wore a cape and could leap tall buildings with a single bound. And his name was Superman.
But in the black urban theater, they had a superhero who wore long pimp coats and had a plan to stick it to tha Man. And his name was none other than Super Fly.
Now he may not have had lightning fast karate moves or been able to shoot heat rays from his eyes,
but what he did have was thirty keys, a tricked out Cadillac Eldorado and one super sweet baddass soundtrack. All of that might not add up to the cause of truth, justice and the American way, but out on the streets, it's enough to make it if you're a Pusher-Man lookin' for a way to get out.

People who added this item 59 Average listal rating (27 ratings) 8 IMDB Rating 7.5
At the same time that blaxpoitation was helping to express the feelings and experience of urban life, there were also other films in the early 70's that were helping to depict the black experience in America outside the gritty streets of the inner cities.

David, the eldest son of a family that's living on poverty level means already, has his life thrown into further desperation when his father is charged and sent away for stealing. Now, it is young David who must fill void left by his dad and learn the hard lessons of life in the South and what it means to be head of the family. Sounder, a coming of age story told during the Depression era, shows that no matter what color we are, we are all striving for the same things in life; to have a fair chance of raising and feeding our families, with the promise of, hopefully, a better future.
People who added this item 610 Average listal rating (383 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 7.4
Frenzy (1972)
After sidetracking into a couple of different themes, Frenzy represents a homecoming, in more ways than one, for director Alfred Hitchcock.
Not only does the master of murder mystery return to London for the production of this movie, but also, returns to the genre that made him (in)famous.
A story about a serial killer who kills his female victims by strangling them with neckties, it is considered by many as the last great Hitchcock film (not surprising, considering he only made one more movie after Frenzy).

People who added this item 441 Average listal rating (294 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 7.2
forget all those stupid Chuck Norris internet memes that you see running ridiculously rampant all over the world wide web. The reality is, his so-called brass balls could never hope to stand a chance against Bruce Lee's raging fists of fury. Let's face it, Chuck's milquetoast martial arts style is nothing but a mockery of a not so mortal combat. The truth is, there is only one true path to the style of the original oriental street fighting technique. And that way is through the path of the man known simply as The Dragon.

People who added this item 873 Average listal rating (550 ratings) 8.2 IMDB Rating 7.8

Rafting down through the Amazonian jungles in search of the famed "Lost City of Gold" known as El Dorado, a scouting troop of conquistadors find that with the results of their mutinous rebellion on one side and the hidden dangers of the forests on the other,
both sides seem determined to put them face to face with the Wrath of God.

People who added this item 1228 Average listal rating (670 ratings) 8.1 IMDB Rating 8

 One of the few exports to come outta Russia during this decade, this film is an excellent example of what can happen when all of space that is usually reserved for special effects is replaced with soul-delivin, quality written script.
  Solaris id definitely a thinking man's science fiction story with an intellect that doesn't sacrifice any of the science nor any of the fiction.
  It's a plot that utilizes the fantasy element of the genre to look deeply into themes of the psyche when applied with the kind of pespective that can only come from being out in the middle of the vast cosmos. Themes such as regret, love, pity, self-inflection and even the most monumental of these concepts, the justification of life and death. And it takes these contemplations and presents them through the simple power of love so as not to get too hoity toity or overbearing that it could fly over the viewer's head. 
  Despite moving at what many of today movie-watchers like to refer as a "slow-burn", once you settle into it's richly layered rhythm, Solaris is a great film whose provocation of thought is as richly satisfying as is the grandest world-demolishing visuals of any of the other more explosive sci-fi extravaganzas.

Here's a little made-for-television Christmas flick only aired a few times during the early 70's that has since pretty much disappeared from public awareness. But never from my happy childhood memories.
While I try to keep only films that were released in movie theaters on these lists 'o' mine, every once in a while I come across a piece of TV cinema that's so good, that for me, it's quality ranks up there with the best of theatrical releases.
The House Without A Christmas Tree is an excellent example of this.
Featuring Jason Robards in one of his best roles (IMO, at least) and a nice little acting performance from child actor Lisa Lucas.

People who added this item 366 Average listal rating (260 ratings) 7 IMDB Rating 7.1
Back in the 70's, before there was James Cameron's Titanic, when it came to disaster filx, this sea-themed tradgedic tale of cinematic epicness was the first king of the world. The movie-world, that is.
And it didn't need a Celine Dion song to make it so, either.
(However, now that I think about, this did have a successful Maureen McGovern hit song attached to it, didn't it....?)

Actually, in the midst of the tsunami of disaster flicks that were battering the movie theater screens at the time, The Poseidon Adventure was a prime example of just how good these types of films could be. While a few movies of this genre were decent enough, the truth was, most of 'em, particularly the sequels, were either rushed thru production or just plain bad. This one however, provided a story that took "advantage of the situation" and actually explored the individual make-ups of the characters and showed the lengths of heroism or the depths of desperation that each of the different personalities can go through during such a cataclysmic event.
People who added this item 955 Average listal rating (623 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 7.7
  And speaking about movies with a disaster lurking in the water,
in Deliverance, the boat might not be as a big as in the Poseidon Adventure, and the white capped waters of the rapids might not be as vast as the Atlantic Ocean,
but, when you look at the end result of what transpires for the characters in this film, the results are almost as cataclysmic. Just on a more individual, more "intimate" level.
  Squeal like a pig if you know what I'm talkin' about.

  Four men seek to bond in the way that men do when they go out into the rugged wilds of nature. Choosing the high testosterone adventure that is white water rafting as the path of their thrill-seeking journey, they soon find themselves struggling to navigate the uncharted rough waters that weave through the backwoods forest that are filled with danger, dueling banjos and  mountain men with a taste for city slickers with pretty mouths.
People who added this item 6387 Average listal rating (4367 ratings) 8.7 IMDB Rating 9.2
The Godfather (1972)
  The Godfather isn't just my favorite film of 1972, it's also my favorite film of all time.

   Therefore, I could go on and on and on of why I think this is such a great movie. And it's not just because it's so often included on so many other "greatest of all time" movie lists, of both fans and critics alike.

  I have my own personal opinions of why I love The Godfather so much. Some are the same reasons as so many others have stated (most often, better than I could), some are reasons that are my twist that I don't see others talk about. For the sake of simplicity, rather than get into those opinions here, allow me to provide a couple of links to other lists in which I discuss a little more about this timeless masterpiece of cinema crime drama (just scoll up to the number position of the list).

100 & 99 Of My Favorite Movies Ever list

  I will say however, that even though I've heard of The Godfather my whole life, even as a kid, I didn't actually get around to actually watching it until I was a sophomore in college.

 And I was blown away immediately by the dialogue, the plot, and just the overall beauty of the production. Oh, and of course, the quality of the acting all around. 
  Since my initial viewing was more than a decade and a half after the movie was first released, for me, I can't even begin to imagine what it must have felt like to watch this in the theater in 1972. Especially since, if anyone watches any mafia movie before The Godfather, they will instantly recognize how this saga of la Familia Corleone changed the genre of gangster film and gave it a massive step forward.

   There was a movement in the motion pictures industry that began in the late 60's and reached it's height throughout the entirety of the 1970's. Not only did a new generation of actors and filmmakers rise from it, but it was also the point in which the director and not the studio took the primary role of authority over the vision and direction of the production of a movie project. The Godfather is considered one of the primary examples of this. Sure, it famously revived the career of Marlon Brando, considered one of the greatest actors ever, but it also put names like Al Pacino, James Caan, and Robert Duvall. It also made the director's name, Francis Ford Coppola, a household name.  And even though Coppola had to continually fight for control, he was one of those New Hollywooders whose vision provided the DNA for The Godfather and it's franchise. 
Which in turn, led to The Godfather being not just one of the primary works that provide the DNA to the New Hollywood, but also it is one of those few that all movies, no matter what era or genre, will be measured by. 

Okay, it's 1972 and here are my favorites....
You can tell that I got a pretty well-rounded sense of satisfaction out of the movies that I watched from this particular year in that this is a list that includes many of the types of genres that would eventually become synonymous with cinema of the 70's. We got some blaxploitation, some made-for-tv movies, a kung fu flick, a farce, a road picture, a couple of acclaimed foreign faves, a disaster film, and of course, what would a list of early 70's cinema be without at least one or two sodomizing homo hillbillies...

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