The Exorcist

Add Comment on December 26, 1973 by BOXOFFICE Staff

   One of the best--and most terrifying--films of the year is the long-awaited release of the sensational bestseller, based on the actual case of a youth controlled by demonical forces (a 14-year-old boy in Maryland in 1949, now happily married and the father of three). William Peter Blatty's screenplay adapted his own novel and uses the 12-year-old daughter of a film star as the one possessed. With the combined talents of makeup artist Dick Smith, special effects director Marcel Vercoutere and the athletic young Linda Blair, the result is a film of such horrifying power that audiences are apt to be visibly shaken. The production, which seemed to be possessed of its own demons, suffered many costly delays.

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Bang The Drum Slowly (1973)

Add Comment on August 26, 1973 by BOXOFFICE Staff

Professional baseball forms the setting for a realistic, sometimes touching comedy-drama that could find great favor with the public. Except for biographical films, sports movies haven't always been popular at the b.o. Additionally, baseball is no longer the nation's number one spectator sport. With these hurdles to overcome and the lack of star names, the main ingredient becomes the story itself. Produced by Maurice and Lois Rosenfield, the Paramount release is sure to garner a wealth of critical praise that will help get the message across. Mark Harris' screenplay, based on i...

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Add Comment on May 28, 1973 by BOXOFFICE Staff

Judging by the talents she displays in this action drama, Pam Grier might yet emerge as the first black female superstar in today's market. Miss Grier is a capable and good-looking performer who averages two or three nude scenes per film. She won't let her fans down here and will pick up some of the devotees of kung fu features via her athletic prowess in a long fight scene with several girls. As written and directed by Jack Hill, "Coffy" is reminiscent of the first "Ginger" epic and undoubtedly will turn into a series that should rival the Cheri Caffaro starrers as grosses. Produced by Robert A. Papazian, the Samuel Z. Arkoff presentation casts Miss Grier as an avenging angel who takes lives as casually as she saves them.

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Charlotte's Web

Add Comment on February 22, 1973 by Chad Greene

As readers of the Newberry Award-winning E.B. White children's classic Charlotte's Web may recall, in an effort to save her barnyard buddy Wilbur from an extended stay in the “ol' smokehouse hotel,” the splendid spider (Julia Roberts) writes words in her web on four separate occasions. Wilbur (Dominic Scott Kay) is described, in turn, as “some pig,” “terrific,” “radiant” and “humble.” Of the four, it is the last that best describes director Gary Winick's take on Charlotte's Web. While certainly not just “some pig,” it isn't exactly “terrific” or “radiant,” either.

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Harold And Maude

Add Comment on December 20, 1971 by BOXOFFICE Staff

   The love of a 20-year-old boy for an 80-year-old woman is the basis for a macabre comedy that borders on the distasteful but always manages to be entertaining in the hands of veteran Ruth Gordon and young Bud Cort. Director Hal Ashby, formerly an Academy Award-winning editor, displayed a similar flair for offbeat humor with “The Landlord” and doesn't let the situation get out of hand very often.    Rich Harold (Cort) stages elaborate “suicides” to stir some emotion from his mother (Vivian Pickles). Fond of attending funerals of strangers, he meets and is befriended by Maude (Gordon). Also a funeral fancier, Maude is almost 80 and believes in living life to its fullest.

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Get Carter (1971)

Add Comment on March 18, 1971 by BOXOFFICE Staff

Michael Caine, a London strongarm man, returns to his hometown of Newcastle to attend brother Frank's funeral. Officially, Frank drowned when he drunkenly drove his car into a river, but Caine thinks otherwise.    As tough and unsympathetic a character as he's ever played is Michael Caine's role as London gangster Jack Carter. Based on Ted Lewis' novel "Jack's Return Home," the MGM British production is nasty, violent and sexy all at once. It should please in the action market, but won't win any laurels for Caine, although his portrayal of the vicious anti-hero impresses. Producer Michael Klinger made "Repulsion" and "The Penthouse," in similar veins.

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When Dinosaurs Ruled The Earth (1971)

Add Comment on February 10, 1971 by BOXOFFICE Staff

   Each new Hammer Film-this one arriving from Warner Bros.-brings with it a promise of another potential Raquel Welch. Because "When Dinosaurs Ruled the Earth" is quite close to "One Million Years B.C.," star Victoria Vetri has a chance to achieve Miss Welch's success. Obviously, the dazzling Miss Vetri, a blonde, comes close to the Welch measurements in a particularly revealing costume. In fact, nearly everyone in the cast wears extremely brief costumes for a G picture. The kids will be well entertained by the monsters and monosyllabic dialogue (which derives from the 1940 Hal Roach "One Million B.C.," remade at Hammer as the 1966 Welch starrer). Parents might fret about exposing their children to so much skin, even though there isn't any actual nudity.

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