ROAD TO NOWHERE
2010, Monterey Media, 121 min, USA, Dir: Monte Hellman

In this expectation-confounding, enigmatic film-within-a-film, a director (cleverly named Mitchell Haven, and played by an excellent Tygh Runyan) struggles with a series of unsettling catastrophes that beset his small film based on a "true story" murder mystery and the following disappearance of a young woman. Haven's lead actress (played with alternating relish and calm assurance by Shannyn Sossamon) bears an uncanny resemblance to the actual missing femme fatale, and the crew begins to uncomfortably wonder if the actress and murderer are one and the same. Meanwhile, Haven's obsession with his beautiful lead grows deeper and more profound. Shot with economic practicality on the Canon 5D and using traditional still-photo lenses, Monte Hellman's mind-bending mood piece is as aesthetically hypnotic as it is emotionally beguiling. Official selection of the Venice Film Festival, Palm Springs International Film Festival and SXSW. "A certifiable masterpiece." - Film Comment. "May also be as significant to the indie feature as AVATAR is to the popcorn movie." - The New York Times. "Monte Hellman's first feature film in 21 years is one of his finest and deepest, a twin peak to his 1971 masterpiece, TWO-LANE BLACKTOP." - Variety. Be sure to check out the trailer for ROAD TO NOWHERE, dubbed by the Austin Post as “the most beautiful trailer ever.”


THE SHOOTING
1966, 82 min, USA, Dir: Monte Hellman

A western like no other, Monte Hellman’s existential masterpiece follows a wary bounty hunter (Warren Oates) hired to escort a snarling little vixen (Millie Perkins) across the desert - searching for what? Along the way, they’re shadowed by demonic gunfighter Jack Nicholson (pure malevolence) as they all ride closer to some hellish reckoning. With former TV Western star Will Hutchins. "Bizarre, hallucinatory and absolutely hypnotic." - Tom Milne.


COCKFIGHTER
1974, Concorde-New Horizons, 83 min, USA, Dir: Monte Hellman

Monte Hellman, adapting the novel by Charles Willeford (Miami Blues), follows stubborn loner Warren Oates, who had been disqualified from receiving a Cockfighter of the Year award due to his boisterous, intoxicated behavior during a match. Oates takes a vow of silence until he wins again, and we follow him on his lonely odyssey, trying to regain his lost sense of worth as he partners with fast-talking gambler Omar (Richard B. Shull) and plans for the future with his sweetheart (Patricia Pearcy). Filmed on Georgia locations (cockfighting reportedly was still legal there) by Nestor Almendros, director Hellman creates another austere slice-of-life road saga, remaining true to the seedy milieu but bringing a compassion and insight to the characters indicative of his agile and elegant strengths as a filmmaker. With an exceptional cast that includes Harry Dean Stanton, Millie Perkins, Troy Donahue, Laurie Bird, Ed Begley Jr., Steve Railsback and a cameo by novelist Charles Willeford.


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