Pick one up at assorted locations around Bristol – or our screening on the 18th September!
September’s screening from the Bristol Bad Film Club will be 80s action classic Samurai Cop – but who made this film and what other wonders did he give the world?
All around the world, there are film fans and historians that are delving through archives trying to find lost footage of Kubrick’s assorted masterpieces and other beloved movies. However, in a far corner of the internet, there is an equally passionate group who are trying to find the lost films of Amir Shervan – the Iranian director of two of cinema’s best trash action masterpieces – Samurai Cop and Hollywood Cop.
Firstly, who is Amir Shervan? Well, a quick look at IMDB and Wikipedia will glean little information, but he was born Amir Hosein Ghaffar in Tehran, Iran on 24 May 1929, before he moved to California in the 1940s to study theatre. He returned to Iran to start his career as a film-maker, but after the 1979 Iranian Revolution all movies were subject to review by the Iranian government and many of them banned due to their content. For anyone who has seen Shervan’s work, you can imagine his were heavily “purified” or altered to suit the growing anti-western and pro-Islamic sentiment.
Unsurprisingly, Shervan upped sticks and moved to the US to begin his film-making career abroad. According to assorted fan sites, Shervan liked to use improvisational acting and dialog – mainly as English wasn’t his first language and this was the Iranian style. His fellow crew members and actors were often as equally educated in the ways of film-making, and thus Shervan made films of a much lower standard than most US audiences were used to. However to Iranian audiences, they would have been top-notch.
As his films contained a large amount of accidental humor and bloopers, due to the cultural differences, he soon became a cult-classic b-movie director in the US, thought ironically he is still regarded as one of Iran’s most polished filmmakers of the 1970s. Apples and oranges, I guess.
He died on 1 Nov, 2006 at the age of 76, however his films live on.
As well as Samurai Cop, which you can book tickets for here, Shervan’s CV contains some truly wonderful titles that if you have the means, you must check out.
Hollywood Cop (1987) is the most famous and sees a mullet-wearing dectective attempt to save a kidnapped child. So far, so average, but look at the trailer!
Shervan’s other films are desperately sought by film fans Killing American Style (1990) (starring Jim Brown and Samurai Cop veteran Robert Z’Dar) and Young Rebels (1992) (starring Robert Z’Dar (again)). Little is known about them as they appear never to have been released on VHS or DVD, but the posters alone put them on our ‘must find and watch’ list.
Rumours are that Cinema Epoch are planning special edition releases! Here’s hoping that’s true.
For all news relating to Amir Shervan films, check out Facebook.com/AmirShervan
Last night, at The Lansdown in Clifton, The Bristol Bad Film Club held its first ever screening – and by all accounts, it was a complete success!
Ed Wood’s anti-classic Plan 9 From Outer Space, often called the worst film ever made, was received incredibly well, selling out four days before the screening. There were even people turning up at the door hoping for last minute seats.
For a first screening of a never-before-tried venture, in the middle of the quietest month of the year, it was humbling to have such an incredible response.
We mentioned some names at the screening, but wanted to make a more public note of appreciation and thanks to several people without whom the evening could not have been possible.
Elliot Jay Stocks, who designed our fantastic logo, proudly emblazoned on our T-shirts last night.
Tiff Farrant, who designed our immense flyers and posters which you may have seen around the city. The number one in the top right corner is indicative of things to come…
The staff at The Lansdown, for making us feel so welcome.
And of course Dr Mark Bould, a lecturer in film at the University of the West of England, who was our guest for the evening, and gave an insightful and enlightening talk before the film. Enhancing the viewing with tidbits about the film, we are indebted to Mark for taking time out to talk about this film – on his birthday no less! – and for doing a Q&A afterwards.
It turned the evening from a simple film screening into a fuller, more satisfying, evening.
And finally, to the audience who came – you really made our night.
You showed us that Bristol has a thirst for bad films and by coming you supported Awamu, the charity for the evening, to whom all profits from the screening will be going.
Watch this space for details of our next screening, coming very, very soon. We have exciting things on the horizon, and we hope you can all join us.
Listen to Bristol Bad Film Club on local movie podcast The Bioscopist!
As well as talking about the upcoming screening on Plan 9 From Outer Space and recent releases, such as Pacific Rim, we also talked to Stu, Court and Matt about their favourite bad films.
And yes, Shark Attack 3 was mentioned.
Make sure you give it a listen (click below).
In order to promote our first screening (which we are really excited about!), one of our uber-talented friends has made us this stunning poster.
Full credit and thanks go to Tiffany Farrant-Gonzalez, who we heartily recommend for any design work.
Remember, our screening will be presented by UWE’s resident sci-fi expert Dr. Mark Bould, who has also offered to answer any questions you may have about the film. We imagine you will have several…
Book your tickets for the 15th August screening here now as seats are limited!