If you assemble a bunch of British film buffs of a certain age in one place and wait for a while, eventually they'll start talking about Moviedrome. Between 1988 and 2000, it was BBC 2's Sunday night slot for the presentation of cult movies, complete with a handy to-camera introduction to put them into context. Between 1994 and 2000, those introductions were presented in the uncertainly-pitched voice of Mark Cousins (though these days, technology has provided a solution to that). But for the first six years of Moviedrome's life, it was Alex Cox's baby, and he's the host that people remember most fondly.
Mostly Film, by its very nature, is a bunch of British film buffs of a certain age assembled in one place. We started talking about Moviedrome on our first day: the comments section of my opening review of Alex Cox's Repo diptych quickly turned into an affectionate discussion of how the show introduced us to films we may not have seen otherwise. Nearly two years later, we've made that discussion an article in its own right. Mad Cox: Beyond Moviedrome features six of the Mostly Film regulars - including me - talking about the impact that a particular Moviedrome presentation had on our cinematic taste.
My contribution to the piece is fairly small, so let's keep this backup material nice and simple: trailers for the six films discussed.
1. The Duellists (reviewed by Indy Datta)
"Moviedrome was... one of the first things for most of us that introduced us to the idea that there was a specific film culture"
2. Il Grande Silenzio (reviewed by Marv Marsh)
"Unlike just watching a film that was on, it felt like someone had chosen the film for you"
3. Manhunter (reviewed by Emma Street)
"In order to better understand film’s nuances by seeing it through the prism of mind altering experience. Possibly."
4. One Eyed Jacks (reviewed by Niall Anderson)
"If you could bottle One Eyed Jacks and were unwise enough to drink it, the hangover would be the worst you’ve ever had"
5. THX 1138 (reviewed by Mr Moth)
"But it’s not about the film – it’s about the medium of discovery"
6. Diva (reviewed by Spank The Monkey)
"an established part of the cult canon – both Time Out and City Limits agreed on that, so it must be true"
Finally, "if you're interested in learning more about this film, the other films we're going to show, or the ones we showed last year or the year before, you can acquire for a very modest fee a Moviedrome book, which also tells you where you can get stills and soundtrack albums." The details are on screen now. Alternatively, because these days we have the internet and thus no need for stamped addressed envelopes, you could just download the first and second Moviedrome factsheets from Alex Cox's own website.