Tag Archives: Lee Marvin: Point Blank

Thoughts on Point Blank at 50

Point Blank premiered in San Francisco on August 30 1967. Critically overlooked at the time, its launched John Boorman’s Hollywood directorial career, became a cult hit and has had an enduring influence on crime cinema. It is a film I have watched on numerous occasions and each time it yields new insights. The 50th anniversary is an opportune time for a few thoughts about its importance.

Point Blank was loosely based the 1962 novel, The Hunter, the first in the series of books by the late Donald Westlake, writing as Richard Stark, about the master thief, Parker. It opens with Walker, as the Parker character is called, played by Lee Marvin, double-crossed and left for dead by his friend, Mal (John Vernon), and wife, Lynne (Sharon Acker), with whom Mal was having an affair, after the three of them have heisted a regular money drop on the prison island of Alcatraz by a powerful criminal network, the Organisation. Walker, somehow, survives his wounds and manages to get off the island. He reappears and proceeds to tear Organisation apart to find Mal and get his share from the heist, the amount of $94,000. He is assisted by a mysterious man, Yorst (Keenan Wynn), who at first comes across as a cop, but is eventually revealed as a senior member of the Organisation, who sees in Walker a means to eliminate his internal competitors.… Read more

Crime Factory issue 13 is out

CF13-COVER

A heads up that issue 13 of Crime Factory is out (with cover design by the one and only Eric Beetner, who also did the cover for my novel, Ghost Money)

In this issue I talk to Dwayne Epstein, author of the new Lee Marvin bio, Lee Marvin Point Blank, about Marvin’s life and movies and what it was like to research a book on one of the true icons of masculine cool.

But that’s just one piece among many, including:

Michael A Gonzales interviews Gary Phillips and Tommy Hancock, creators of the new anthology, Black Pulp.

Ruth Dugdall talks working with and writing about criminals with Angela Savage.

Tom Darin Liskey gives true crime reportage from Indian Country.

Elusive Ozploitation icon Roger Ward is interviewed about his career by James Hopwood.

Plus Kennedy assassination pulp fiction (and no, I didn’t know such a thing existed either before this issue, either), great fiction and reviews.

It’s a bargain at 99 cents for the Kindle version or $5.99 plus postage for the print version.

Or, if you’re on a budget (or just stingy), you can download the PDF here for free.

And Melbourne folk, while I’m pulling on your coat about Crime Factory related matters, this coming Tuesday, May 14, Crime Factory Publications is proud to be teaming up with Cinecult 303 for a screening of Lee Marvin’s cult classic, Prime Cut (which I reviewed on this site here).… Read more

Orders open for LEE, a fiction anthology inspired by Lee Marvin

Lee-Marvin fishing

A heads up that you can now order LEE, Crime Factory’s anthology inspired by iconic American actor Lee Marvin, from our the site.

There’s been a bit of buzz around the traps about LEE and at the risk of sounding immodest, it’s all justified. Seventeen stories ranging from gonzo to literary noir, penned by some of the hottest crime writers around. Here’s what others are saying:

“This collection of short fiction puts legendary actor Lee Marvin smack dab in the center of the action where he belongs.”
Dwayne Epstein, author of Lee Marvin: Point Blank

“This collection delivers. The writing is pungent, sly and muscular, dark and comic, and all of it has a tremendous energy. A love of film and love of noir is evident in every story. This does Lee proud.”
Christos Tsiolkas, author of The Slap and Dead Europe

I’m excited to say I’ve also got a story in the anthology. I won’t give too much away about it, except to say it titled ‘Gone Fishing’, hence the theme of the photo above.

If you want a sneak peak of LEE, ManArchy is running a excerpt from Irish crime writer Adrian McKinty’s contribution to the anthology, ‘Hospital Ship’, which you can find here.

And if too much Lee Marvin is not nearly enough, you might light to check out my review for ManAnarcy of the recently released Marvin bio by Dwayne Epstein, Lee Marvin Point Blank.… Read more

Summer reading report back 2013

As the summer holiday’s draw to an end and the business part of 2013 kicks off, it’s time for a little run down of what I’ve read over the Christmas/New Year period and how I’m going to approach my reading in the year ahead.

fc3I’ve seen the 1972 movie Fat City, directed by John Huston, many times but never read the 1969 book of the same name by Leonard Gardner. It was hands down my read of the summer. Indeed, I’ll go as far as saying it’s one of the most beautifully written novels I can remember reading in a while.

Set in the fifties, Fat City is the story of two amateur boxers, Ernie Munger and Billy Tully. Tully is the older of the two, a former fighter who wants another shot at the big time. The fact he’s an alcoholic means he’s got no chance. Munger is a young man with potential, but you know from the first time we meet him, he’s not going to amount to much. The book follows the hopes, dreams and most of all, anxieties of these two men through a series of bars, flop houses and dead end jobs. As I said, there’s never any doubt the two won’t amount to much, the question is just how far they’ll slide.… Read more