THAT’LL BE THE DAY (1973) Part one of the well done, two-film story of Jim McClain (David Essex) and his quest for music fame and fortune (and more birds) in 50s working class Britain. Also features Ringo Starr (reprising his early years as a teddy boy), Keith Moon and Billy Fury. More of a character study than a music film (though, it has some cool music), That’ll Be The Day covers McClain’s early years as a shit, routinely cheating on, then leaving his wife with a new-born baby. Producer David Puttnam told MOJO Magazine that his original idea for this film was based on Harry Nilsson’s semi-autobiographical song, “1941,” about a child abandoned by his father, only to grow up and abandon his own. Thanks to JB for sharing this film with us. Part two, the excellent, Stardust, is below. Click the pages for readable pop ups of the latest MOJO magazine about the making of the movie. Find the DVD at Amazon, HERE.
STARDUST (1974) Since we were wallowing in Rockpile alumni [a while back], and the topic of the 1974 movie Stardust was kicked around on our Dave Edmunds post (HERE), I was nudged to seek out an online copy for viewing. The flick was a personal fave in the mid-70s, but I was, frankly, suspicious of my fond and fading memories. What a surprise to see that it really is a solid film, with outstanding performances by David Essex and Adam Faith in a cautionary tale of a Beatle-esque band of British pals making it to the top. Fans of the era will spot all the cheeky references (“At least he didn’t say ‘turn left at Greenland’”) and familiar scenarios, but these now jaded eyes were relieved to find the film’s subtlety and nuance fully intact. Especially the way Faith, as the road manager, cuts quiet deals behind the band’s back to make Essex the star (“fancy a drink?”). Dave Edmunds co-stars and supplies most of the original music and Keith Moon appears as the drummer of the fictitious Stray Cats. Nick Lowe even makes a cameo (see comments). The print is excellent, but the night scenes are a bit dark in the beginning. Just work through the first 5 minutes and enjoy. Find the DVD at Amazon, HERE. NOTE: Dave Edmunds 2013 re-release of Subtle As A Flying Mallet now includes, as bonus tracks, his musical contributions to Stardust, HERE.