Smallscreen Reviews

Review: EPIX salutes John Milius in documentary, day of films, premieres January 11 (VIDEO)

By April Neale Jan 2, 2014, 6:18 GMT

Review: EPIX salutes John Milius in documentary, day of films, premieres January 11 (VIDEO)

Original Documentary, Milius, Premieres Saturday, January 11, 2014, at 8PM ET on EPIX November 18, 2013 10:30 AM

Larger than life, lusty, and possessed of an air of largesse and love for laughter, filmmaker and writer John Milius -  described by the late uber-critic Pauline Kael as a "fascist" -  is celebrated in the documentary "Milius."

Hollywood’s love/hate with filmmaker John Milius was the subject of this surprisingly emotional doc that made the film festival circuit last year.  Lucky for us that EPIX will have an all-day tribute for the man who co-wrote and punched up 'Dirty Harry', 'Jaws' and who wrote with Bruno Heller for the missed series, 'Rome' on HBO.

Milius is described in detail through touching anecdotes by his family, his college mates who later became the machers of Hollywood, and his peers who all got something unique and wonderful from the self-described "Zen Anarchist."

Milius was anything but traditional or predictable; he's Jewish but adores surfing and guns, and he penned some of the most iconic dialogue in cinema, lines that are well known the world over like " I love the smell of Napalm in the morning," "Charlie don't surf" and "Go ahead, make my day."

Original Documentary, Milius, Premieres Saturday, January 11, 2014, at 8PM ET on EPIX

Documentarians Zak Knutson and Joey Figueroa do the man some justice as they take us through his career and life events, the man's man who the Coen brothers paid homage to with 'The Big Lebowski' character Walter Sobchak, played by John Goodman.  Part of me wants to imagine that the late songwriter/singer Warren Zevon wrote "Lawyers, Guns and Money" about this exuberant man I would have loved to crossed paths with.

John Milius, for those unaware, wrote "Apocalypse Now," co-wrote the first two "Dirty Harry" films, wrote and directed "The Wind and the Lion," "Conan The Barbarian," and "Red Dawn," and as rumor has it... asked to be paid for his work on "Dirty Harry" in guns.



Early on, Milius was an avid reader and history buff who adored Japanese director Akira Kurosawa and Teddy Roosevelt's swagger. He studied film at the University of Southern California School of Cinema-Television where his peers included George Lucas, Basil Poledouris, Randal Kleiser and Don Glut. He also collaborated with Steven Spielberg who had some wonderful stories about his lifelong friendship with Milius, leading to a great story about the Indianapolis speech Quint gives in "Jaws," a moment written by Milius and then edited down by actor Robert Shaw, who portrayed the crusty alcholic sea captain.



Milius caught an enormous amount of flak for his hyper-violent and some say jingoistic film "Red Dawn" from Hollywood film critics. Milius was and apparently still is a vocal NRA supporter and is shown in the documentary shooting skeet and posing with numerous firearms.

We also find out that David Milch does an unexpected act of kindness for Milius when he was financially strapped in a great story. More interesting moments and insight come from a variety of Hollywood talents such as Sam Ellliott, who says, “He doesn’t write for pussies and he doesn’t write for women."

Also great snippets and tales are heard from Steven Spielberg, George Lucas, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Francis Ford Coppola, Harrison Ford, Michael Mann, Robert Zemeckis, Oliver Stone, Bryan Singer, Kurt Sutter, Charlie Sheen, Matthew Weiner and other actors and filmmakers who either worked with the filmmaker or were influenced by his body of work.

 

Bonus intel:

SMELLS LIKE VICTORY: EPIX SALUTES JOHN MILIUS will be an all day tribute to the man and his work featuring the original documentary along with Apocalypse Now, Red Dawn (’84), Farewell to the King, Flight of the Intruder and Dillinger.

Full Schedule (all times eastern):

9am - Apocalypse Now
11:30am - Red Dawn (1984)
1:30pm - Flight of the Intruder
3:30pm - Dillinger
5:25pm - Apocalypse Now
8pm - Milius
9:45pm - Red Dawn (1984)
11:45pm - Farewell to the King
1:45am - Milius
3:35am - Flight of the Intruder
5:35am - Dillinger


John, if you are reading this, I cannot wait for your creative take on Ghengis Khan.

Please make every effort to see this documentary.



FROM THE WEB

Further Reading on M&C

COMMENT

comments powered by Disqus

Latest Headlines on M&C

Follow Us

Follow M&C on Pinterest

Search

Custom Search

More

Latest on M&C

.