Moviedrome Mondays: Bad Timing (1980) (Mark Cousins intro)

I have posted a youtube video link below to Moviedrome presenter Mark Cousins introduction to late master filmmaker Nicolas Roeg’s 1980 psychological drama Bad Timing. Readers can also read Cousins intro transcript here. The episode’s original airdate was February 15, 1998 (read here). Aside from his snide comments about Lawrence of Arabia (which I will happily forgive), I agree with absolutely everything that Cousins says here about this twisted masterpiece. Similar to Roeg’s approach to form and content (both here and in his other great films), his extremely gorgeous leading actress Theresa Russell (whom he married in 1982) delivers a performance oozing of eroticism, mystery and raw emotion. Though a talented musician, Art Garfunkel’s acting skills have always left a lot to be desired and in Bad Timing, this is admittedly no exception. Nevertheless, he comes off as surprisingly tolerable here and his performance does not taint the film at all. If any of you readers are interested in where I rank Bad Timing on my list of my favorite Nicolas Roeg films, click here.

Here is a youtube video link to Mark Cousins Moviedrome intro to Bad Timing

Here is another youtube video link to Mark Cousins Moviedrome intro to Bad Timing

Here is a youtube video link to the film’s original theatrical trailer

Here is a youtube video link to what may or may not be (I can’t say for sure) a shorter version of the aforementioned trailer link from above

Here is a youtube video link to British film critic Mark Kermode’s commentary on Bad Timing as his BFI Player choice of the week

Also, here is a youtube video link to British director Bernard Rose’s Trailers from Hell commentary for it


9 thoughts on “Moviedrome Mondays: Bad Timing (1980) (Mark Cousins intro)

  1. I haven’t seen this film so I can’t say anything about it.
    John, have you watched any more poliziotteschis? If so, any thoughts?

  2. But Pete, I thought you were a huge fan of Theresa Russell šŸ™‚ Question though, had it not been for Art Garfunkel, would you have rated this film much higher than you did? šŸ™‚

  3. I think based on the links I gave to you Steve, you will find Bad Timing to be totally worth watching – plus, you can’t say no to anything by Nicolas Roeg during what I consider to be his peak years and from the commentary of Cousins, Kermode and Rose, they seem to think that too šŸ™‚

    I have watched two more poliziotteschis (Savage Three and Highway Racer) šŸ™‚ I love them both tremendously šŸ™‚ I know I have implied this a lot to you, but once when I thought I have covered everything that is exhilarating within cinema, you come by and contribute more exciting stuff šŸ™‚ I remember after I saw the first two poliziotesschis you recommended to me (Almost Human and I think the second was The Climber), I started saying to myself, how did I gloss over this treasure trove of a sub-genre šŸ™‚ Speaking of Savage Three, I had to find the song that frequently played and the title may be “Boiling Mud” and the band might be “Panama Red” šŸ™‚ As for Highway Racer, it is like an adrenaline rush of a film – those car chase sequences really left me on the edge of my seat and I think one could really sum them up that way because like a lot of poliziotesschis, it has been reported and implied in that Eurocrime documentary that the directors sometimes improvised to get the job done – in other words, they did not always have the time for reshoots and multiple takes šŸ™‚

  4. I’m really pleased you loved Savage Three and Highway Racer. Both are great. Savage Three is quite a film. Do you have any particular favourite scenes from it? There’s one scene with a forklift that springs to mind. Joe did a great job in the film and the script is partially written by the screenwriter of Almost Human Ernesto Gastaldi so that would explain why the script is good. A fine actor in Enrico Maria Salerno also did a great job and provided the morality the film need to balance the carnage of Joe and the other two. Also, did you watch the interview with Joe that was included as an extra? If so, any thoughts? I think it’s a fantastic interview and I’m really pleased it’s included.

    Highway Racer is also great. Exhilarating chases through the streets of Rome. I especially like the car stunt on the Spanish Steps in Rome which I’ve been to and loved. The car chases are so great and actually on par with Vanishing Point. There’s even a chase scene that prefigures the chase in To Live and Die In LA, driving against traffic on the wrong side of the road.
    Maurizio Merli did an excellent job in the lead.

    I also got 88 Films release of another one of Merli’s films The Tough Ones directed by Umberto Lenzi. I recommend that film too. I told you about it before. I also just got the release of Tough Cop by Fractured Visions and I’m very pleased with it. Great release of a great film.

  5. So sorry for the late reply Steve – busy as usual šŸ™‚ If I had to pick two of my favorite scenes (though I do have many) – the first comes near the beginning when I believe Joe Dallesandro’s character is in a lab and their is a brief line of dialogue about the differences between animals and men (remember after that one lab rat is torn to death by the other lab rats) and then the next scene cuts to what looks like people fighting in a stadium. Another one comes near the end, where one of Dallesandro’s men asks the other two “what are you fellas doing tonight?” This gives off the vibe that the whole cycle of violence is going to continue, which let’s face it, is a pretty cynical way to end it šŸ™‚ I have not watched Joe’s interview yet, but I plan on getting there šŸ™‚

    Once again, I agree with everything you say about Highway Racer šŸ™‚ In addition, I too wonder If maybe William Friedkin saw this film when he did To Live and Die in L.A. (especially concerning the great car chase sequence)? šŸ™‚

    Thank you for mentioning The Tough Ones because I have the Blu-Ray/DVD release of that too, which I got for Christmas šŸ™‚ It was released here by Grindhouse Releasing šŸ™‚

    P.S. I do not know If you have a multi-region DVD player, but If so, you may be excited to hear that the Criterion Collection is releasing Alex Cox’s 1987 Acid western Walker in April of this year šŸ™‚ I love that film too šŸ™‚ Here is a link below šŸ™‚

  6. Those are great scenes. The ending is a bit like the ending of A Clockwork Orange or maybe it’s a bit like the ending of To Live and Die In LA where the other guy is going to start it over again after the previous guy’s death. It is a very cynical ending. I guess you could say the film is Italian Psycho as the guy has a good job and plush apartment. (I haven’t seen the Christian Bale film though). Also, Joe’s character has Andy Warhol’s portrait of Marilyn Monroe in his apartment.
    Surely no coincidence. That’s definitely an in-joke.
    Joe’s interview is really great. It covers his Warhol and European film work. It doesn’t cover his Hollywood work though which is too bad. I’d like to hear him talk about that. He’s always a great interviewee and here is no exception.

    I think you’ll like The Tough Ones. It is a top notch film. Tomas Milian is great as always as The Hunchback although he’s only in the film for about 15 minutes. The Eurocrime documentary told you all about Maurizio Merli. He also starred in the western Mannaja which I haven’t seen.

    That is great news about the Criterion release of Walker. It is a great film by Alex Cox. I think it’s Ed Harris’ best performance. It did previously have a DVD release by Criterion but it’s great that this is a Blu release.

    As for the other films, I hope you get to watch Blood Ties soon. I’d like to hear your thoughts on that.

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