Movies – 1970s

Wicked, Wicked (1973)

Wicked, Wicked was presented in ANAMORPHIC DUO-VISION! What’s Duo-Vision? It’s two separate images projected at the same time. “Twice the tension! Twice the terror!” screamed the movie’s poster art, making the most of what was basically a fancy name for split-screen. Film and TV journeyman Richard L. Bare (Cheyenne, Green Acres) wrote and directed this(…)

Wicker Man, The (1973)

Wicker Man, The (1973)

Edward Woodward plays Sergeant Howie, sent to the remote island of Summerisle off the coast of Scotland to investigate an anonymous report of a missing girl. He finds a strange and sometimes perverse sub-culture practicing what appear to be ancient pagan rituals. As a devout Christian, Howie is not only offended, but ruthlessly determined to get(…)

Wife Swappers, The (1970)

Documentary on the cult of wife swapping in London shown in a series of dramatised episodes portraying the various ways in which married couples become attracted to the pastime and its effect on their lives. Narrator David Gell Paul James Donnelly Leonard Larry Taylor Ellen Valerie St. John Cliff Denys Hawthorne Sheila Bunty Garland Carol(…)

Wild Geese, The (1978)

Richard Burton, Roger Moore, Richard Harris and Hardy Kruger are evidently enjoying themselves in this all-action adventure. They play ageing mercenaries hired by Stewart Granger to rescue a deposed African president and put him back in power, all for the sake of big-business interests – a plot similar to Frederick Forsyth’s The Dogs of War. Politically(…)

Willard (1971)

In this hugely successful story of violent vermin, oppressed mother-dominated office boy Bruce Davison turns the tables on his tormentors by training his two pet rats, Socrates and Ben, and their sewer pals, to attack on command. But when he neglects them after falling in love with Sondra Locke, hell hath no fury like rodents(…)

Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory (1971)

Wonka Bars and golden tickets, Oompa Loompas and a chocolate river, snozzberries and lickable wallpaper, golden eggs and everlasting Gobstoppers . . . This was the world of Willy Wonka (pictured at right) – candy man, inventor, and scourge of naughty children. Like the Roald Dahl book on which it was based, Willy Wonka & the(…)

Wiz, The (1978)

Sidney Lumet’s schmaltzy all-black disco-flavoured musical version of The Wizard of Oz starred 33-year old Diana Ross as 24 year old Harlem schoolteacher Dorothy Gale (pictured below). On her travels along the yellow brick road, Dorothy is befriended by a lion (Ted Ross), a tin man (Nipsey Russell) and a scarecrow, played by old plastic nose himself(…)

Wizards (1977)

This ambitious animated sci-fi tale from the director of Fritz the Cat (1972) was released the same year as Star Wars, and both films dealt with a fairy-tale battle between good and evil. But whereas the Lucas epic was set in a galaxy far, far away, Ralph Bakshi grounded this odd cartoon in Earth’s far-flung future where(…)

Wombling Free (1977)

Based on the popular TV series, this charming family movie sees the Wombles facing two struggles. While they wage their ongoing war against litter after being invited to a kid’s birthday party, they also have to prove their existence to the inhabitants of Wimbledon Common. Director Lionel (The Railway Children) Jeffries’ silly and charmless musical(…)

Woodstock (1970)

The 1969 outdoor rock festival called Woodstock (although it was actually held on Max Yasgur’s 600 acre dairy farm near Bethel, New York) gave its name to a generation and came to symbolise the peace and love movement of the late 1960s. For three days, over 500,000 fans overwhelmed the facilities and when the rains came the(…)

World’s Greatest Athlete, The (1973)

Equal parts Disney slapstick fantasy, Tarzan movie and underdog sports flick, The World’s Greatest Athlete had enough zany spirit for several films. With a cast that included Tim Conway, John Amos, a then-unknown Jan-Michael Vincent (later star of TV’s Airwolf) and sportscaster Howard Cosell as himself, the movie continued the Disney sports comedy tradition of Gus and The Strongest Man in the World.(…)

Yakuza, The (1975)

Retired detective and ex-serviceman Harry Kilmer (Robert Mitchum) is called on to help an old army friend whose daughter is being held hostage by yakuza gangsters. Turning to a Japanese assassin who owes him a debt of honour, the cop exploits the hitman’s gangland connections to infiltrate Tokyo’s underworld. Writers Robert Towne (of Chinatown fame)(…)

Yanks (1979)

While stationed in a small Lancashire town as they await D-Day, three American soldiers become involved in romances with local women. Some interesting performances from the principle players – including Richard Gere, Lisa Eichhorn, Vanessa Redgrave, William Devane and Rachel Roberts – and an old-fashioned (1940s) romantic air help the film along nicely, despite a series of events which are quite(…)

Yogi’s Ark Lark (1973)

Young Frankenstein (1974)

Dr. Frankenstein’s grandson, Frederick von Frankenstein, reluctantly decides to follow in his ancestor’s footprints in Mel Brooks’ affectionate parody of horror films. Frederick would like to forget his heritage, insisting that his university students pronounce his last name “Fronkensteen” but when news arrives that Frederick has inherited his grandfather’s Transylvanian estate, the young Frankenstein travels(…)

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