The Sunday Cult Film Corner: “The Mechanic (1972)”

19 Jun

You know what i really don’t like with films these days? Remakes. they’ve been around for a while, but to be honest i think that it’s starting to get a little bit out of hand. I mean, here are just some of the films that are being lined up to be remade in the coming year;

Akira,   An American Werewolf In London,  Child’s Play, Cleopatra, The Dambusters, Daredevil, Das Experiment, Death Note, Dune, Excalibur, Fantastic 4 Reborn, Frankenstein, Fright Night, Godzilla, Ghost In The Shell, The Great Gatsby, Judge Dredd, The Lone Ranger, Short Circuit, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, The Thin Man, Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, Timecrimes, The Three Musketeers, Total Recall and The Warriors.

all of this was frankly bad enough, but when i heard that they were remaking a unhearalded favourite movie of mine, i though “man they’re really taking the piss now”. This film? oh just a tense thriller of a hitman and his apprentice. Ladies and gentlemen, i give you THE MECHANIC (1972).

The Mechanic star Charles Bronson as Arthur Bishop, a “mechanic” who is methodical and meticulous in his approach to offing, leaving no trace or evidence. He is a master of his craft but as such is a solitary man and is unable to trust people. After killing an associate on the orders of his handlers, he meet his son, Steve (played by Jan-Micael Vincent). Steve is selfish and ruthless and Arthur believes that he may have the potential to become a mechanic, so he sets about training him. But as the film progresses, tensions and mistrust start to develop between the two as his handlers disapprove of his actions.

The mechanic is an interesting films as it’s directed by non other than Michael Winner! Yes, THAT Michael Winner. Bear in mind that this was made in 1972, a few years before the unintentional awful-brilliance of  “Death Wish 3” or the atrocity of “Bullseye!” Compared to those two, The Mechanic is a solid, poised study of deadly dedication. the opening scene alone, as Arthur undertakes a hit with no or overblown dramatics, and very little music. It almost looks like a European film disguised as a hollywood thriller. the acting is also decent with Bronson as taciturn as ever, with Vincent’s character perfectly smug and callow.

The fact that they’ve remade this film with Jason “Crank, The Transporter” Statham only just goes to show the more or less creative bankruptcy that’s occurring in the movie world right now.

So let’s spend the evening sitting back as we learn how to kill people without leaving a trace.

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Posted by on June 19, 2011 in Film


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