Rev-o-lution... a word. Spoke everywhere."
Some epics are released and receive the immediate admiration and laurels they deserve. Ben-Hur. Lawrence of Arabia. Amadeus. Even the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
Then you have those masterpieces so ahead of their time, they're shredded by the critics of their day, and fail to find their proper footing. The Night of the Hunter (1955) director Charles Laughton was so disheartened by the reaction to his first directorial work, he never got behind a camera again. The film is now considered one of the all-time essential thrillers.
Revolution (1985) was British director Hugh Hudson's third feature film after the Oscar-winning Chariots of Fire (1981), and the well-received Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan, Lord of the Apes (1984). Hot off his iconic turn as Tony Montana, Al Pacino was cast as the everyman hero of this Revolutionary War story, while art house-darling Natassja Kinski was given the female lead.
Revolution was destined for success... until the Universe decided to take a sharp left turn. The expensive, $28,000,000 film was pulled away from the filmmakers months before completion and rushed into theaters, resulting in a mammoth bomb (it grossed about $350,000, domestically.)
Is Revolution an essential cult classic? Or does it live up to its soiled reputation? Check out my in-depth, 30 Years Later conversation with writer and real filmmaker, Joey Monroy on this week's Backseat Filmmaker.