Thursday, 8 December 2011

Performance: The Thinking Man’s Gangster Film

Originally conceived as a Swinging London style romp Nic Roeg's 1968 dark, violent masterpiece Performance still shocks and impresses to this day.


The soundtrack album was released by Warner Bros. Records on September 19, 1970. The album features Mick Jagger, Ry Cooder, Randy Newman, The Last Poets, Buffy Sainte-Marie, and Merry Clayton.

Performance is a 1968 British crime drama film; the film was produced in 1968 but not released until 1970. Directed by Donald Cammell and Nicolas Roeg, Performance stars James Fox and Mick Jagger of The Rolling Stones in his film acting debut.

Performance was the first film that either Roeg (Walkabout, Don’t Look Now, and The Man Who Fell To Earth) or Cammell (Demon Seed) had directed. It was also Jagger’s first film- the only real established name actor was James Fox , whose part was originally going to be played by Marlon Brando(!) Looking back now at the ground-breaking, machine-gun cut-up editing, (Jagger’s character makes an appearance before we are introduced to him), the avant-garde soundtrack, realistic depictions of violence, scenes of drug-taking and three in a bed romping, it’s impossible to imagine a major studio making a film like this today. Indeed, Performance very nearly didn’t make it to release.


1 comment:

beadsinbeauty said...

I have never seen this film but I want to now!