Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Lou Gilbert, Ellen Madison, Tom Erhart, Ben Carruthers, Charles Fischer
Directors: Benjamin Manaster, Philip Kaufman
Genres: Indie & Art House, Comedy, Drama
GOLDSTEIN, the feature film debut of talented director Philip Kaufman (The Right Stuff, The Unbearable Lightness of Being, Quills), is an early example of American independent filmmaking from the early 1960s. A fable about... more »
Steven Hellerstedt | 04/04/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"An old man crawls out of Lake Erie, a waitress gets pregnant, and a pair of gynecologists play the first, and probably last, comic abortion scene in movie history. Well, the first, for sure. It's a comic fable of the life of the prophet Elijah, according to its director, Philip Kaufman. Kaufman would go on to write the screenplay for `Raiders of the Lost Ark' and direct such hits as `The Right Stuff' and `The Incredible Lightness of Being,' very good Hollywood movies. GOLDSTEIN, though, was his first and, assuming he spake troth in the talking head interview included on the disk, still one quite close to his heart.
Released to the art houses in 1965, heavily influenced by French New Wave cinema, shot on a miniscule budget, and featuring members of Chicago's Second City improv group, GOLDSTEIN is an impressive debut. Alright, there's absolutely no plot and half of the ad-libbed scenes fall flat. It still looks good, Nelson Algren has a longish scene in it - talking about an old baseball player, kind of missed what his point he was driving at - and the streets of Chicago circa 1964 are delicately captured.
GOLDSTEIN is going to appeal to people who like to puzzle out what a movie's about. Heaven knows the plot, such as it is, gives you little to nothing to go on. The most compelling character for me was the Old Man, played by Lou Gilbert. Although he only in about 20% of the scenes his presence juices things up nicely. Lets face it - a bearded, wild-eyed man dragging himself out of one of the great lakes is going to attract your attention and whet your curiosity. I think I would have loved this movie if he'd been a central character and a stronger story had been woven around him. As it is I'm convinced the movie's Old Man, to some extent, inspired Robert Crumb's Mr. Natural.
Frances Van Kampen | Mt. Prospect, IL | 10/29/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I was thrilled that I was able to locate "Goldstein", which was filmed in 1963 in Chicago. I had a very small speaking part, and this particular scene was filmed at the "Gaslight Club" in Chicago where I worked in the early 1960's. The entire film was improv and the originator of "Second City" also has a part in the film, as did some of the original improv actors.
I can't wait to show this film to my grandchildren."