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» 8mm Forum   » 8mm Print Reviews   » Helter Skelter. Iver Double album

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Author Topic: Helter Skelter. Iver Double album
Tom Photiou
Film God

Posts: 4837
From: Plymouth U.K
Registered: Dec 2003


 - posted April 25, 2016 03:35 PM      Profile for Tom Photiou   Email Tom Photiou   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Helter Skelter is a 1976 TV film based on the 1974 book by prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi and Curt Gentry. In the United States, it aired over two nights. In some countries it was shown in theatres with additional footage (nudity, language and more violence).
The movie is based on the murders committed by the Charles Manson Family. The best-known victim was actress Sharon Tate. The films title was taken from the Beatles' song of the same name. According to the theory put forward by the prosecution, Manson used the term for an anticipated race war, and "healter skelter” was scrawled in blood on the refrigerator door at the house of one of the victims. It recounts the murders Manson committed, the investigation, and the 1970-71 trial where prosecuting D.A. Bugliosi attempted to draw connections between the Manson family and his violent convictions.
Helter Skelter is directed by Tom Gries, stars Steve Railsback as Manson and George DiCenzo as Bugliosi. Writer JP Miller received a 1977 Edgar Award from the Mystery Writers of America for Best TV Feature or Mini Series Teleplay.

As of this Super 8 double album, (now joined onto a full 600ft), released by Iver Film services, the colour has held up really well with no signs of fade yet. Sound is very good if lacking in bit of bass but through the pioneer amp it is pretty good. The sourced material, while good appears to be a little dirty in places with some black marks, (not scratches) evident, but over all a very good print.
The thing to bear in mind here is that this was originally shown here in the UK over two nights as this movie made for TV was 194 minutes long and was one of the many Lorimar TV productions released along with many other television series.

The idea of cutting this into 30 minutes is one hefty task. Clearly there was an awful lot of padding but Iver have actually done a first rate job with this one, a tense opening with the murders briefly setting the scene,(with some of the Beatles music from the album), for a pretty disturbing half an hour.
I would much prefer to watch this half hour version rather sit through over three hours worth. You certainly do not have to have seen the full film to understand the story.
Looking at this Iver version my guess is that they have taken this from the cinema extended movie version as there is a lot more blood shown,(and one use of the F word) that was missing from the original TV version.
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[ June 16, 2019, 02:46 AM: Message edited by: Tom Photiou ]

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James N. Savage 3
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1375
From: Washington, DC
Registered: Jul 2003


 - posted May 18, 2016 07:56 AM      Profile for James N. Savage 3   Email James N. Savage 3   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Thanks for another great review!

This is a movie that has been on my want-list through the years. This digest almost never comes up for sale on the used film circuit. I think one reason is that this title may not have been a big seller for Iver Films when it was released. It was received as a "made-for-TV" movie here in the U.S.A., and there was SO MUCH competition on the super-8 market in the late 70's (the Star Wars films, Jaws, Hammer Films, etc.). Its easy to see how this little gem could get overlooked.

But, being that this subject matter never seems to get old, along with great performances by Railsback and others, I think this title has gained popularity through the years.

There probably aren't a whole lot of prints around, and the colors on your print has held up very well Tom. Congrats on a very nice, rare print!

James.

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Adrian Winchester
Film God

Posts: 2941
From: Croydon, London, UK
Registered: Aug 2004


 - posted May 18, 2016 10:25 AM      Profile for Adrian Winchester   Email Adrian Winchester   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Thanks from me too - delighted to gain such an insight into his rarity. I think I once failed to snap up a print offered at a BFCC or Blackpool and I'm kicking myself all the more now. I do have the Iver trailer. though. I'm sure the theory from James that there are not many prints around is right - it's clearly grim viewing, especially as it's based on fact.

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Adrian Winchester

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Leon Norris
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 958
From: Elkins Park, PA, USA
Registered: Jun 2012


 - posted June 15, 2019 12:37 PM      Profile for Leon Norris   Email Leon Norris   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I also have this one! And it still has nice color! Well edited! But I rarely run it!

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David Baker
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 233
From: Hamilton , Ohio
Registered: Aug 2012


 - posted June 15, 2019 03:40 PM      Profile for David Baker   Email David Baker   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I'm sure it's just ok .

Had I known somebody ALREADY reviewed this , I wouldn't have bothered .

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Dave

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Jim Schrader
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1628
From: Savage, MN, USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted June 15, 2019 04:09 PM      Profile for Jim Schrader   Author's Homepage   Email Jim Schrader   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I got the vhs version and a dvr copy of this movie off tv when Decades air it, plus a suoer 8 copy, it's still as chilling in any format today as it was when I watched on tv when it first aired.

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jim schrader
"Let's see “do I have that title already?"

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Douglas Meltzer
Moderator

Posts: 4554
From: New York, NY, USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted June 16, 2019 10:24 AM      Profile for Douglas Meltzer   Email Douglas Meltzer   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
David,

There is never a definitive review. It's always good to get another viewpoint.

I've placed your review from the other thread below.

Doug

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I think there's room for just one more film.....

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David Baker
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 233
From: Hamilton , Ohio
Registered: Aug 2012


 - posted June 16, 2019 10:25 AM      Profile for David Baker   Email David Baker   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Now here's one not for the faint - hearted .

This is probably one of the scariest movies of all time. This film pretty much show's how big a slime bag Charles Manson was and just how much of a grip this loser had on his "family". It is also scary because it can pretty much apply to the cults that are around today and how much one man can brainwash someone to the point of total control and make them his puppets.

The only thing that I wish they would have done though was to play up Manson's connection to the Beach Boys. It was Dennis Wilson who introduced Manson to record producer Terry Melcher (Doris Day's son). And Melcher was the original target at the Tate home due to the fact that he lived in that house.

This TV movie based on the true Manson Murders is a great one! It stars Steve Railsback, George DiCenzo, Alan Oppenheimer, and Nancy Wolfe! Railsback was fixed up very well and looked just like the real person in My opinion. I think he performed so unbelievably great here that I think he should have won an award! He is that remarkable! Everyone else performed really well especially Manson's girls. For a TV film this movie was quite rough and this film is quite accurate. I don't want to spoil it any further because this is special film. Once you see this film you won't believe how Railsback is! The movie is extremely hard to find as well. If you see this film for sale any where buy it! I strongly recommend it!

Really nice digest print , colors still there too .
A 600 foot version , much of the story is told in the courtroom , with riveting flash-backs.

Pretty bloody and gory , especially for a made-for-tv movie .

Pleasant dreams!

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Dave

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Leon Norris
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 958
From: Elkins Park, PA, USA
Registered: Jun 2012


 - posted June 21, 2019 12:22 PM      Profile for Leon Norris   Email Leon Norris   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Now hard to find!

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