Thursday, July 13, 2006

Privilege

The best '60s British film no one seems to remember, Privilege is a wild rock and roll/political statement from uncompromising director Peter Watkins (The War Game) in his only major studio film. One of the film's stars, Mark London (To Sir with Love), chipped in on the songs with composer Mike Leander ("Do You Wanna Touch Me"), while star Paul Jones (from Manfred Mann) offers great vocals as a charismatic singer manipulated by the government into luring the youth in a variety of disturbing directions. Catchy, haunting, and definitely gutsy (check out "Onward Christian Soldiers" and "Jerusalem"), it's ripe for rediscovery. For some insane reason, Universal has never bothered to release the film on home video in any format. However, anyone in the Los Angeles area can catch it on the big screen on Saturday, July 15 at the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood, as part of the incredible, annual Mods & Rockers Festival (on a double bill with the equally hard-to-see Stardust); click here for more information.

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12 Comments:

Anonymous RT said...

I've never heard of this one from Watkins. Hopefully it will be released someday soon or the print will go on a tour.

2:08 AM  
Blogger 7 Black Notes said...

Hopefully it will be screened more often; the print they screened was beautiful, in first-run shape. Petition your nearest revival theater!

3:34 PM  
Anonymous Pappy said...

This is a fantastic share and the blog is killer - thank you!

2:22 AM  
Blogger Bobby said...

Awsome I saw the film when it first came out. For year I used to watch out in the hope it would come on TV.
Thanks

12:54 AM  
Blogger gspeedlace said...

One of my favorite soundtracks of the 60s! This has been promised on CD for some years now, but seems like it will never get released. Many thanks!

RPM Records in the UK has released 3 great discs of a promised (but at this point unlikely) 4 disc set of Paul Jones' solo recordings, and volume 1 ("My Way") features alternate recordings of two of his PRIVILEGE tracks.

I caught the Cinematheque screening at the Aero and the print was fantastic. On director Watkins' site, he talks about the A.C. showing the only surviving print and mentions it was in awful shape; hopefully the new print we saw hints at something positive in terms of a home video release?

Interesting that the actual song PRIVILEGE doesn't appear in the film itself!

2:26 PM  
Blogger gspeedlace said...

last piece of trivia - there was a fun, power pop cover of "I've Been a Bad, Bad Boy" by a group called Moonchild (?) in the late 90s. The band had a female singer and switched the title to "I've Been a Bad, Bad Girl". I heard it on an obscure UK CD of 60s covers, the name of which escapes me. I wish I hadn't loaned it out, as I've never been able to replace it!

2:32 PM  
Blogger 7 Black Notes said...

Yeah, the Paul Jones set is interesting -- I wonder what else is in the vaults that we're not hearing? That soundtrack was promised back in 2000, so I'm not holding my breath for a release now! (And I'd love to know why the title song isn't in the movie, as it's one of the best tracks. Weird.) Hopefully with that beautiful print available now, at least it will come out on DVD in England since Universal couldn't care less about it in the U.S. We can dream, anyway.

2:33 PM  
Blogger gspeedlace said...

The last of the Paul Jones discs was scheduled to be his last solo record (CRUCIFIX IN A HORSESHOE) plus extras from the period. I'm guessing that will never happen, but fortunately I turned up an OOP copy of the album on CD from the Repitoire label. Good stuff! Much darker than most of his other material. If you know "Cat's Eyes" from RPM's Volume 3, that gives a good sense of the sound. Kind of amazing he didn't do much more recording after. He hosts a very entertaining rhythm & blues show for BBC radio these days, and you can listen to archived episodes on their website.

2:42 PM  
Anonymous Bob Trombetta said...

THANKS for posting this along with the other great stuff I have ripped from you. I read about your site - which is awesome - on the DVD Maniacs bulletin board. Great stuff- thanks again!

7:58 PM  
Anonymous Carol Pahl said...

I have a copy of the Privilege soundtrack on the mono album. Any suggestions where I could sell it?

9:50 PM  
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4:58 PM  
Blogger Mike White said...

Coming to DVD July 29, 2008.

2:24 PM  

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