Cinema Retro: looking back at 1960s and 1970s movies

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retroThe graphics might not be up to the standards of Vanity Fair or GQ, but if you’re a fan of the films that came out 40 or 50 years ago, you should get a big kick out of Cinema Retro magazine and its associated website.

The UK-based publication is celebrating its 10th anniversary with a new issue packed with interesting features and photographs dealing with the 1964 British historical epic “Zulu,” the surprising use of a UK backlot for “Goldfinger” scenes set in the United States, and an exhaustive account of the production of the 1960 Elizabeth Taylor film “Butterfield 8.”

The magazine also includes many reviews of new DVD releases and soundtrack albums from that long-ago period.

The lay-out and editing is sometimes confusing, with unrelated stories floating on the same page, but the writers and editors dig into material you won’t find anywhere else.

Case in point, a fascinating look at the way Pinewood Studios outside London was utilized for a wide array of “locations” in “Goldfinger” from Fort Knox to the super-villain’s Swiss industrial lair. I’ve seen the movie countless times but was still surprised to learn that the Kentucky “horse farm” was mostly a British mock-up and that only two sides of the film’s Fort Knox gold depository were built on a backlot.

So much of the story takes place in Miami and Kentucky that I’ve always assumed a considerable amount of “Goldfinger” was shot there. The magic of studio technicians is vividly illustrated in the Cinema Retro lay-out.

The editors of the magazine are willing to give lots of space to pieces on interesting behind the scenes figures like director of photography Richard Kline, whose long and distinguished career includes everything from “The Pink Panther” (1964) to “Death Wish” (1974) and the epic 1976 Dino DeLauretiis remake of “King Kong.”

The cameraman’s credits also included the 1978 Brian De Palma film “The Fury” and the notorious 1986 flop “Howard the Duck” so he had lots to talk about.

The magazine is augmented on a daily basis with the www.cinemaretro.com website which is packed with photos, reviews and tributes that won’t fit into the paper-and-ink version.

Joe Meyers

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