Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB. USA, 2003. Constant Communication, Written in Stone. Cinematography by Tony C. Jannelli, Clyde W. Smith. Produced by Ted Demme, Jerry Kupfer, Richard LaGravenese, Gini Reticker. Music by John Kimbrough. Film Editing by Meg Reticker. National Board of Review Awards 2003.
The clips alone are reason enough to watch this invigorating documentary that hearkens back to the days when the major studios’ main goal was to make good movies as well as profitable ones. The film starts by showing the influence of European films of the sixties and goes through to the seventies in Hollywood, when studio heads decided to cash in on the counter culture being perpetuated by restless youths and make films that rode on the very edge of expectations. This resulted in films like Easy Rider, Five Easy Pieces, Klute, The Conversation, McCabe And Mrs. Miller, An Unmarried Woman, and so many more. Here, luminaries from the period such as Peter Bogdanovich, Francis Ford Coppola, Julie Christie, Sissy Spacek and many more share their experiences and memories from the time and give an effective idea of just how much things have changed in the years since. Make sure you see the full three-episode version and not the edited one that was prepared for theatrical release–even though the full-length film still only skims the surface of the great films (and tends to stick to the more popular filmmakers), it’s a great place to begin your adventure in this wonderful era of cinema.