my Movie

Movie Details

Title:   The Travelling Executioner
Director:   Jack Smight
Year:   1970
Genre:   Comedy
Times Seen:   1
Last Seen:   05.03.08

Other Movies Seen By This Director (0)

Notes History
Date Viewed Venue Note
05.03.08Borrowed Ahh The Travelling Executioner. Me and Jarrette have had this move in-hand wanting to watch it for no kidding a year and a half. The history is intertwined with Butt Numbathon 7 and the trailers we saw there for movies like Pepe and The Legend of Hillbilly John which spawned a semi-weekly get-together at Tim League's house to watch these ebay-purchased films as a group. On the night of our first meeting, we all noticed Tim's incredible poster for this movie hanging on his wall, to which he said he'd never actually seen the movie. Well none of us had although we all loved Stacy Keach and had heard bizarre things about the movie. So Jarrette ponied up and bought a DVD-R and put it in his car for the next screening night and there it sat for eternity since Tim then conscripted the group into watching Fantastic Fest screeners instead of real movies until today: a random Saturday where Jarrette's in town for the weekend and we're killing time before Pineapple Express.

So I've now finally seen The Travelling Executioner. It's pretty bizarre.

I guess it takes place during the first world war or so; Stacy Keach plays the state executioner, travelling from city to city in his carnival-esque truck and performing each killing with pride and zeal. Right off the bat he calms a condemned man into submission with this long speach about the fields of Ambrosia and how great the afterlife is, then the plot proper sort of begins with this girl who's due to be zapped but offers up favors in exchange for pretending the chair's been stolen. Thus begins a movie that should be dark but has a constant bed of happy-go-lucky Jerry Goldsmith The Sting-esque score, often swivelling between light, dark, weird, random, and downright creepy. Keach is electric and awesome with his long hair and lack of mustache. Bud Cort's also in it.

So most of the movie is very decent, if not exactly what I was expecting. Then the ending comes and holy shit... I better not say anything about that.

I think maybe the most fascinating thing about this movie is that it was made by MGM. This was a "studio movie." That's incredibly hard to believe.

So yay! Finally got to see this!