Cinema #24: Marquees & More (Part 2)

Ahhhh. It does my heart good to look at these old marquees.  There wasn't THX sound and stadium seating, and the projectors didn't provide the greatest resolution in the world.... but then, we weren't obsessed about how high tech our movies were..... and if it sucked, you were only out a few quarters.  Nowadays, for the amount of money I shell out, you're goddamn right it better be crystal clear and nobody better talk and ruin my "experience".

I love this picture of the Possession of Joel Delaney marquee, nestled comfortably next to a Woolworth.   If I'm not mistaken, the Tape City (?) was a "record and pre-recorded tape store".  It was too early for VHS - The Possession of Joel Delaney came out in 1972.  Somebody help me here.

It's interesting to note that MacLaine chose to jump on the Exorcist gravy train, considering her affiliation with William Peter Blatty (to the extent that even her daughter's blurred face appeared on the original hardcover).

Nearly ten years after its theatrical release, this 1981 local TV guide counts it as tonight's "best bet".  Considering it's up against The Incredible Hulk dwarf wrestler episode and "the do's and don'ts of foot care", this is high praise indeed.

Okay, so you'd rather watch Joel Delaney than Barbara Eden sell make-up that turns people's faces green on Harper Valley, PTA. But what about when it actually hit the theaters back in '72? Here was some of your selection.... where are you taking your date tonight?

Last Tango in Paris was pretty seedy; you better be sure your woman is cool with some heavy duty sex scenes before taking her to that one.  I personally found it a bit boring.... almost as boring as Cabaret.  No thanks.

Theater of Blood was nowhere as good as the title suggests, with Vincent Price hamming it up and Diane Rigg showing and doing none of the things that made us like her on The Avengers.  The Woody Allen flick would be the closest competition, but I think, in the end, I'm going to take m'lady to Joel Delaney.
Next Feauture: You Can't Win 'Em All (1970)

If you can shake your eyes away from the lovely minis for a moment, you'll notice a cardboard cutout promotional in the background.... that's the same illustration shown below.  How cool would that be to own this? These chicks should steal it.

I've never actually seen You Can't Win 'Em All; the best I can gather is that, despite its killer movie poster, it was pretty lackluster.  Other than being banned in Turkey, I can't find a whole lot to say about it.

I will mention that, no matter how lukewarm the film, it was a different story when shown at the drive-in.  So much of a film's enjoyment derives from the environment you see it in.  Even the best digital audio and IMAX technology can't compete with chillaxin' at the drive-in theater.....

How cool would this next one be? You can see You Can't Win 'Em All Friday night, and Saturday morning you can go watch King Kong Escapes.  Notice the prices - and the Cokes are free.  Today, you have to take out a second mortgage to afford a soda at the movie theater.

These may be the most concise spot-on movie reviews ever put to print.  Were they written by Robert Christgau?



  1. Tony and Chuck seem to be mildly diverted by their own firepower, and the lady in the centre just bemused by it all. God knows what the movie must have been like to watch.

  2. Cool stuff. I love those pithy reviews! So much info in such little space. Thanks for the background info besides just showing the pics.

  3. TCM ran "You Can't Win 'Em All" during a Tony Curtis film festival shortly after he died. Not too bad a movie, typical action flick for back then.

  4. I miss Woolworth's and drive-in theaters. *sighs* (Sorry, but those were more interesting to me than the movies themselves.)

  5. AnonymousJuly 03, 2012

    Hey Gilligan, where'd you go searching for that Joel Delaney flick? Those Hoyts locations (all 5 of them) put you in the middle of Sydney! And what's with those auxiliary power plants?

  6. AnonymousJuly 04, 2012

    Hah 'Tape City' that reminds me of the SNL skit where Gilda Radner and John Belushi worked at a store that only sold tape.

    Folks would call the store and ask if they had a certain recording tape, and Gilda's reply would be along the lines of --
    "No, no, we only sell the sticky kind ".

    Our towns local theatre had a "Free Show" during the summer months as well, don't see that happening nowadays at all.

    Cheers Obey_Gravity

  7. That first picture reminds me of how much I miss Woolworths! Although the info on those films is interesting, I don't recall ever hearing about either of them. Now I may have to see if I can get them on Netflix.

  8. Paul DucaJuly 09, 2012

    Actually, THE POSSESSION OF JOEL DELANEY predates THE EXORCIST by over a year...and did you get that shot from Lileks.com?

  9. Count Yorga! The very thought of the infamous kitten-eating scene unnerves me still.