TCM is showing John Boorman’s classic thriller today at 4:30 Eastern Standard Time

If you haven’t seen Point Blank, I recommend you stop what you’re doing, tune in, and have your mind blown. If you have seen Point Blank, I assume you’ve already done so. Starring Lee Marvin and Angie Dickinson (who has one of the best freakouts in movie history here), Point Blank combines techniques from the Film Noir and French New Wave schools and creates one of the most stylish visions that I’ve ever had the pleasure of viewing. So many of the images were immediately burned in my memory, and have gone on to influence a legion of directors. It’s been a few years since I’ve seen it (why I don’t have a DVD copy is beyond me), and am totally excited about catching it on TCM with no commercials.

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Watch 1979’s Estonian Thriller, Dead Mountaineer’s Hotel (Hukkunud Alpinisti), with a fantastic score from Sven Grünberg

I’d been trying to find a streaming version of this film for the better part of a year, and finally someone put it up on youtube! Based on a story by the Russian born Strugartsky brothers (highly respected, and often adapted, Sci-Fi authors), Dead Mountaineer’s Hotel is a slow burning thriller, taking place in a hotel at the foot of an avalanche prone mountain. Though some use is made of it’s beautiful snow covered setting, most of DMH could have been performed as a theatrical production, confined as it is, to a set of rooms. Director, Grigori Kromanov, uses the precarious, chilling, setting of the hotel, and it’s dark set design to continually build dramatic tension. The acting, across the board, is compelling, creating shifting allegiances towards characters, leaving one wondering who can be trusted. Also of significance in establishing the mood is synthesizer pioneer, Sven Grünberg’s original score, which combines ambient synthscapes, with melodic themes, occasionally haunting vocals and even a bombastic rocker (Grunberg was, after all, a member of Prog Rock band, Mess). Without wishing to further increase your knowledge of the plot, I’ll leave you with that vague exposition. Watch it before it gets pulled!

Some cuts from the OST

And a little more Grunberg, for those interested