Tag Archives: Al Pacino

A Modern American Classic: The 25th Anniversary of Heat

It’s rare that films come along that are recognized as an instant classic, but 25 years ago the Michael Mann written and directed crime epic Heat did just that. Heat was not just any crime thriller; it was an intricate story that wove interconnected plots together like a fine suit with a realism that is rare in crime cinema. Not only that, it was one of the most meticulous and detailed films not only in the crime genre itself but in all of cinema history.

It is not widely known but Heat was actually based on a true story that happened in Chicago in the early 1960s. Neil McCauley was a real career criminal who had been in and out of prison throughout his entire adult life. The pursuit of McCauley was led by Chicago Detective Chuck Adamson, who would later serve as the inspiration for the character of Vincent Hanna. Adamson and McCauley did sit down and have coffee like in the movie and on 25th March 1964 McCauley was chased down during the execution of a robbery and gunned down by Adamson. When Michael Mann was introduced to Adamson by a mutual friend, a man by the name of Nate Grossman, the McCauley story captured Mann’s imagination. He put a lot of the real events into the story that would eventually become Heat.

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Dede Allen: Dog Day Afternoon (1975)

Our month of Dede Allen continues as we dive into the film that earned her an Oscar nomination for her powerful editing – Dog Day Afternoon. There are so many amazing things about this film, from Sidney Lumet’s masterful direction to Al Pacino’s intense performance, but it’s Allen’s pacing that really shines here for us. She takes a movie with relatively low action and raises the stakes by cutting at just the right time, or in some cases not cutting at all. With so many stand out moments, it was tough to pick a favorite.

Jon also had the chance to check out The Missouri Breaks, which caps off this series of movies about criminals nicely, although when the film came out no one was having it. But check it, the film stars Jack Nicholson, Marlon Brando (rocking an Irish accent like whoa), Randy Quaid, Harry Dean Stanton, and features music by John Williams.

Finally, we discuss some fun movies to pair this with and Chewie blows our minds with a startling revelation.



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