Sunday, April 29, 2018

Michael Anderson, British Film Director

I learned this morning that British film director Michael Anderson passed away in Vancouver, British Columbia, four days ago. He was ninety-eight. (British director Guy Hamilton died in April of 2016. He was ninety-three.)

A favourite film of mine is the 1955 aviation war story The Dam Busters. Not only is it a fine and exciting piece of filmmaking but it features the Avro Lancaster bomber. My father flew on "Lancs" as a gunner during the last months of WW2. That connection certainly enhances my enjoyment of the film.

In interviews I've seen, Anderson comes across as a gentleman. I cannot imagine him yelling on a film set. (Only Otto Preminger could get away with that kind of on-set behaviour.) OECA/TVO movie host Elwy Yost had him in the studio on one program I remember. Anderson looked like a gentleman farmer from Lincolnshire more than a film director.

Considering the fact that I'm a big fan of Jules Verne's stories, it's odd I've never seen the 1956 epic film Around the World in 80 Days.


Jawsphobia said...

I remember I used to have Logan's Run on DVD. Never saw Orca from start to finish as I recall, despite being a Jaws fan. Interesting titles on his imdb page. Never saw Pope Joan, which I didn't realize was a movie. All the Fine Young Cannibals must have inspired the band name.

Simon St. Laurent said...

I've never had Logan's Run on DVD, or any home video format, but that may be due to the fact I consider the film to be okay. Anderson's direction is fine, exhibiting a sure hand, but there are script problems. The best stuff: the Domed City scenes. Things go off when the runners go outside. It becomes a sort of Milton Bradley board game: escape from the city; a frozen cave; the wilderness; decrepit city - Washington, DC (?!); and back to the Domed City. (Jerry Goldsmith's score is outstanding; maybe the best thing about the film.)

I too have not seen Orca.