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Wednesday, January 14, 2004

Have poncho, kick ass

To the classic Lynwood Cinema for a reshow of The Good, The Bad and the Ugly - newly remastered print with 19 minutes of restored additional footage. A good print with good sound - lots of fun.

On the big screen, the mastery of the cinematography and direction comes through. Eli Wallach and Lee Van Cleef (one of the great hatchet faces of our time - I kept wishing he'd make one with Chas. Bronson, RIP).

Memory Lane: Early 1967, Tours (France): I'm living with Wendy and persuade her to see this film, much hyped by brother Pete. I step up to the ticket kiosk and the lady taps the sign requiring one to be 18 yrs.

"Mais j'ai vingt-et-un ans!", I protest, having just reached that august door-key age.

Up steps a gallic PC Plod. "Papiers!" In my dinky pocketless Afghan jacket, I am not carrying them, so it's off to clinky in a Maria Noire with frantic calls to W to make her way back to rue Danton and await my call as character witness.

As usual, her stunning prettiness wins the day. Station supe wowed by la petite galloises (Welsh) and her vasty more fluent French than my back-alley 'apache' argot. After rather longer chat than I would have preferred, I am released into her custody with much finger wagging, not least over behaving "plus correctement avec une belle mademoiselle comme celle-ci".

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