|Vintage Pulp||Jun 27 2019|
|Vintage Pulp||Feb 14 2018|
As far as director Roman Polanski goes, we've talked about him before. But we'll add that art stands on its own, and people stand on their own too. Having created superior art should not absolve someone of crimes; having committed crimes should not serve to denigrate superior art. That's just our opinion. Plus, a director isn't the only one responsible for a film. The hundreds of others involved, including the select group pictured below, and especially the unpictured screenwriter Robert Towne—who is just as responsible for Chinatown as Polanski and won an Oscar for his screenplay—deserve credit. We will always criticize art for being inaccurate when it pretends to be truthful, or for promulgating false or harmful beliefs. Chinatown doesn't do that. Quite the opposite—it offers sharp insights into how and why Los Angeles became what it is. Meanwhile its subplot somewhat foreshadows Polanski's own crime, which makes the film ironic in the extreme. If you haven't seen it you simply must.
|Femmes Fatales||Aug 2 2016|
|Femmes Fatales||Feb 18 2016|
|Vintage Pulp||Dec 13 2011|
A long while ago we showed you a paperback cover that featured a painting of Sharon Tate. That book specifically used Tate both as cover art and interior subject matter. In contrast, the two figures above aren’t explicitly supposed to be Tate, but it just so happens that both unknown artists modeled their work from an on set photograph from her 1966 Dracula spoof The Fearless Vampire Killers. The photo was shot by Roman Polanski, who also directed the film. As you can see, it was used on John Dexter’s sleaze pulp Chuck-a-Lust, painted by Darrel Millsap, and on Paul Collins’s, aka Renato Carocci's giallo Ordine di uccidere, painted by Bendetto Caroselli. The former was published in 1967, and the latter in 1968. One year later, Tate was gone.
|Vintage Pulp||Sep 13 2010|
Japanese poster for the 1967 horror spoof The Fearless Vampire Killers, directed by Roman Polanski, and starring Jack McGowan, Polanski and Sharon Tate.
|Vintage Pulp||Aug 18 2010|
Roman Polanski’s first English-language film was Repulsion, starring Catherine Deneuve as a disturbed woman whose neuroses slowly escalate into a full-scale psychotic break when the departure of her sister leaves her in isolation in an apartment they share. We won’t pretend to have any new insights into such a rapturously praised film save to say that it’s certainly one of Polanski’s most interesting, a visual masterwork in deeply shadowed black and white that manages to be beautiful even as it descends into paranoia and violence. Highly recommended. And as a side note, we wouldn’t mind terribly if Deneuve’s hairstyle came back into vogue. Batshit insane never looked so glamorous. Repulsion opened in Japan today in 1965.
|Hollywoodland||Sep 28 2009|
Is it the end times? No, just another weekend in the world of pulp. It was hard to keep track of all the events that occurred. Most took the form of arrests. Actress Tawny Kitaen, who has looked much better than she does above left, was arrested for drunk driving in Newport Beach, California. She had recently appeared on a reality show called Celeb Rehab, and we think it’s safe to say she’s earned her spot on season two.
Meanwhile, over in Switzerland, Roman Polanski was arrested on an international warrant stemming from a 32-year-old statutory rape charge. U.S. authorities filed the warrant recently, but it must have slipped Polanski’s mind, because he was on his way to Zurich to receive an award at a film festival when he was pinched. So much for Swiss neutrality.
And in a development we’re sure Polanski is well aware of, two days ago Charles Manson follower Susan Atkins died in prison. Atkins was not present during the massacre of Polanski’s then-wife Sharon Tate and four others, but aided and abetted the murders of Rosemary and Leno LaBianca the next night.
And lastly over in desolate West Texas, actor Randy Quaid managed to get himself arrested along with his wife for skipping out on a hotel bill. He claims it was all a publicity stunt, which seems possible when you see how cheerful he is in the mug shot above right.
But we bet he wasn’t smiling when the prison guards stripped him naked and crawled all up in his body cavities with pitons and spelunking helmets. That's the way they do it in Texas—er, so we hear. This is not by any means a complete rundown of what happened since Friday, but we’re only two people here and that’s far too few to keep up with all the real world pulp going on. We wish all the celebrity jailbirds good luck.
|Vintage Pulp||Apr 12 2009|
Most critics think it’s one of the best films ever made. We think its promo art is also of rare quality. Below are two Japanese one-sheets for Roman Polanski’s all time masterpiece Chinatown, starring Jack Nicholson, Faye Dunaway and John Huston. It premiered in Japan today in 1975.
|Modern Pulp||Jan 7 2009|
Bitter Moon is typically dark Roman Polanski, starring Peter Coyote, Kristen Scott Thomas, Polanski’s wife Emmanuelle Seigner, and a young Hugh Grant. There are several posters for the film, but we like this noirish German version. The movie isn’t really noir, though—it’s a mix of erotic drama and suspense, with some fairly disturbing misogynist interludes. It’s a polarizing film, and critics disagree on its merits. It certainly isn’t as good as Polanski’s Chinatown, but what is? It isn’t as good as Rosemary’s Baby either, but again, what is? One thing is clear—Polanski has a lot on his mind, and some of it isn’t very pretty. Bitter Moon opened in Germany today in 1992.