#123movies #fmovies #putlocker #gomovies #solarmovie #soap2day Watch Full Movie Online Free – Byron Orlok is an old horror-movie star who feels that he is an anachronism. Compared to real-life violence, his films are tame. Meanwhile, Bobby Thompson goes on a killing spree…
Plot: Peter Bogdanovich’s startling debut feature is both a brilliantly constructed thriller and a disturbingly prescient look at the rise of mass shootings in America. In his last serious dramatic role, Boris Karloff plays a version of himself: a washed-up horror actor whose fate intersects with a psychotic sniper (Tim O’Kelly) on a killing spree.
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One of the greatest films of the 1960s cost only $125,000
In the DVD introduction to this film, writer/director/actor Peter Bogdanovich explains how it happened. B-movie mogul Roger Corman came to Peter in late 1967 with a proposal: take 40 minutes of footage from Corman’s film “The Terror”, film 20 minutes of Boris Karloff (who owed Corman 2 days of work), film 40 minutes of other stuff with other actors to tie it all together, and complete a feature film all for a budget of $125,000.
You’d think this would be a recipe for a colossal turd of a movie, but on the contrary, it pushed everyone’s creativity to the max and resulted in a remarkable work of cinema.
Peter & his wife grabbed their typewriters and wrote a modern horror story contrasted against a classic Victorian horror. Assisted by Peter’s friend & successful writer/director Samuel Fuller (not credited), they churned out a profound & poetic script loosely based on the news story of Charles Whitman, a former marine sniper who went on a mass shooting rampage the year before. A bit was also inspired by the Highway 101 sniper shootings in which a 16-year-old boy killed 3 motorists in 1965. That’s the “modern horror” part. The Victorian horror comes with the character Byron Orlock (played by Karloff) who is a classic horror icon at the end of his career, realizing that his brand of horror is outdated.
If you can see where this is going, you’re in for a great experience. Yes, it’s a story of change, out with the old & in with the new, but in a chilling way I’ve never seen before. The idea that fear has evolved into something far different. Ghost stories & creepy characters no longer cut it. The new brand of terror is faceless, anonymous, soulless and random. Enter the phenomenon of the mass killer.
“Targets” was ahead of its time, and Peter even mentions how its release was delayed because studio execs were afraid of how its message would be received, especially with the assassinations of Martin Luther King Jr and Bobby Kennedy just months prior to release.
It is extremely relevant today, and even if it weren’t so artistically done & expertly acted, I would recommend this film for its message alone. The directing, cinematography & acting is icing on the cake, and oh what icing it is! If you’re like me, you probably know Boris Karloff as the lumbering creature in “Frankenstein” (1931)… a big, stiff lunk in electricians boots who drags himself around as if he’s murderously constipated. Here in “Targets” he is eloquent, charming, tragic, comic and instantly worthy of our attention. My favorite scene is in a hotel room when he tells a ghost story. Director Bogdanovich is very respectful with his camera work in that scene: it opens wide and fixes itself on Karloff with its (and our) undivided attention as it slowly narrows on Karloff’s face. No cuts, no jumps, no distractions, just pure Karloff.
The movie is full of thoughtful camera work like that. As you watch the film you get the idea that every camera angle, movement, pan & zoom, and every shadow and inch of background action was very carefully planned to the millimeter. I confess I’ve never seen a Bodanovich film, but I know he’s a very respected director. Now I see why. On a tiny budget that, today, wouldn’t cover the catering for a big studio film, he cranked out a magnificent film.
I would put “Targets” squarely in the class of Hitchcock, as compelling as my favorites “Rope”, “Rear Window”, “Vertigo” and so on. But as I mentioned earlier, it’s the blending of Victorian horror (Hitchcock, Vincent Price, etc) with modern horror (Fox News, etc) that makes this an unforgettable show.
Just an epilogue to the story of how the film was made… Although prints caught the attention of major studios, it wasn’t officially released until it caught the eye of a film professor who invited Paramount execs to a screening in his classroom. Paramount bought the film for $150,000 (netting Corman a whopping $25,000 profit… hope he didn’t blow it all in 1 night!). The film was eventually released, and it received rave reviews from critics but never did well with the public at large. Way ahead of its time. Lucky for us it survived onto DVD 40 years later when perhaps the world will understand it better. Don’t hesitate for one minute to see this film if you have the chance!
Boris Karloff provides some dignity to his last iconic role in Peter Bogdanovich’s Targets
At the start of this month, the 10th one that Halloween resides in, I wrote here that I’d review mostly horror movies in honor of the day of spooks and ghouls throughout October. Now I’m at the end of it having watched plenty of classic, and not-so-classic, films starring the likes of such icons as Bela Lugosi, Vincent Price, Peter Lorre, and Boris Karloff. So it’s here that I’m now reviewing what was Karloff’s last great role, essentially playing himself but under the name of Byron Orlok. It seems Orlok is tired of the movie business and wants to retire, much to the consternation of young up-and-coming director Sammy Michaels (first time director Peter Bogdanovich) whose script he wants Orlok to read. Part of Orlok’s reasons may have to do with the disillusionment of recent headlines of real terror overshadowing his old school ways of frightening audiences. Meanwhile, seemingly normal man Bobby Thompson (Tim O’Kelly) buys a rifle, of which he already owns many, and attempts to go on a shooting spree…There’s more to the plot than what I just mentioned but I don’t want to spoil anything so I’ll just say that the contrast between the tired, withdrawn Orlok and the adrenaline-pumped Thompson provides much excitement for the entire 90 or so minutes this movie takes in. And with the exception of some Rock’n’Roll on the radio and the score from The Terror at the drive-in, there’s no actual soundtrack accompaniment of music for the action sequences which achieves a startling realism for the era. The performances are well done and Karloff achieves some dignity with the way he handled himself here. I especially loved his next-to-last line, “Is this what I was afraid of?” Despite this mostly being a dark and shocking movie, there were a few moments of humor when Sammy and Byron wake up in bed and Byron then looks in the mirror. Oh, and I also liked Nancy Hsueh as Orlok’s secretary Jenny. Okay, I think I’ve said enough so I’ll just say that Targets comes highly recommended.
Original Language en
Runtime 1 hr 30 min (90 min)
Genre Crime, Drama, Thriller
Director Peter Bogdanovich
Writer Peter Bogdanovich, Polly Platt, Samuel Fuller
Actors Tim O’Kelly, Boris Karloff, Arthur Peterson
Country United States
Awards 1 win
Production Company N/A
Sound Mix Mono
Aspect Ratio 1.85 : 1
Laboratory Pathé Laboratory, USA (color by) (as Pathé)
Film Length 2,485 m (1970) (Finland)
Negative Format 35 mm
Cinematographic Process Spherical
Printed Film Format 35 mm