PHILIP JENKINSON ON CHEESE WESTERNS/ SAM
PECKINPAH'S 'SALAD DAYS'/ APOLOGY /THE NEWS WITH RICHARD BAKER/ SEASHORE
Cut to Philip Jenkinson sitting in a film review set under a picture of the Keystone Cops. He is a wee bit camp.
Philip Jenkinson: (E.I.) Horace Walpole's 'Rogue Cheddar', (sniffs) one of the first of the Cheese Westerns to be later followed by 'Gunfight at Gruyere Corral', 'Ilchester 73', and 'The Cheese Who Shot Liberty Valence'. While I'm on the subject of Westerns, I want to take a closer look at one of my favourite film directors, Sam Peckinpah, the expatriate from Fresno, California.
Superimposed Caption: 'GET ON WITH IT'
Philip Jenkinson: In his earliest films, 'Major Dundee', (sniffs)
Superimposed Caption: 'AND STOP SNIFFING'
Philip Jenkinson: 'The Wild Bunch' and 'Straw Dogs' he showed his predilection for the utterly truthful and very sexually arousing portrayal of violence (sniffs) in its starkest form. (sniffs)
Superimposed Caption: 'WILL YOU STOP SNIFFING'
Philip Jenkinson: In his latest film Peckinpah has moved into the calmer and more lyrical waters of Julian Slade's, 'Salad Days'.
Picturesque scene of boys in white flannels and girls in pretty dresses frolicking on a lawn to the accompaniment of a piano played by one of the boys.
Superimposed Caption: 'SALAD DAYS (1971) DIRECTOR SAM PECKINPAH'
The boys and girls cease frolicking and singing. Lionel enters holding a tennis racket.
Lionel: (M.P.) Hello everybody.
All: Hello Lionel.
Lionel: I say what a simply super day.
All: Gosh yes.
Woman: (Nikki Howorth) It's so, you know, sunny.
Lionel: Yes isn't it? I say anyone for tennis?
Julian: (G.C.) Oh super!
Charles: (E.I.) What fun.
Julian: I say, Lionel, catch.
He throws the tennis ball to Lionel. It hits Lionel on the head. Lionel claps one hand to his forehead. He cried in pain as blood gushes through his fingers.
Lionel: Oh gosh.
He tosses his racket out of frame and we hear a hideous scream. The camera pans to pick up a pretty girl in summer frock with the handle of the racket embedded in her stomach. Blood is pouring out down her dress.
Woman: Oh crikey.
Pouring blood out of her mouth, she collapses on to the floor clutching at Charles's arm. The arm comes off. Buckets of blood pour out of his shoulder. He staggers backwards against the piano. The piano lid drops, cutting off the pianist's hands. The pianist screams. He stands, blood spurting from his hands over piano music. The piano collapses in slow motion, shot from several angles simultaneously as in 'Zabriskie Point'. Intercut terrified faces of girls screaming in slow motion. The piano eventually crushes them to death; an enormous pool of blood immediately swells up from beneath piano where the girls are. We see Julian stagger across the frame with the piano keyboard through his stomach. As he turns the end of the keyboard knocks off the head of a terrified girl who is sitting on the grass nearby. A volcanic quantity of blood geysers upwards. Pull out and upward from this scene as the music starts again. Cut back to Philip Jenkinson.
Philip Jenkinson: Pretty strong meat there from (sniffs) Sam Peckinpah.
There is the sound of a burst of machine-gun fire and holes appear in Philip Jenkinson's shirt. Blood spurting from each hole in slow motion. Intercut shots from different angles.
Caption: 'TEE HEE'
Roll credits over Jenkinson's dying agonies. Cut to stock footage of the Women’s Institute applauding. Fade out.
Voice Over (and Roller Caption): (J.C.) 'THE BBC WOULD LIKE TO APOLOGIZE TO EVERYONE IN THE WORLD FOR THE LAST ITEM. IT WAS DISGUSTING AND BAD AND THOROUGHLY DISOBEDIENT AND PLEASE DON'T BOTHER TO PHONE UP BECAUSE WE KNOW IT WAS VERY TASTELESS, BUT THEY DIDN'T REALLY MEAN IT AND THEY DO ALL COME FROM BROKEN HOMES AND HAVE VERY UNHAPPY PERSONAL LIVES, ESPECIALLY ERIC. ANYWAY, THEY'RE REALLY VERY NICE PEOPLE UNDERNEATH AND VERY WARM IN THE TRADITIONAL SHOW BUSINESS WAY AND PLEASE DON'T WRITE IN EITHER BECAUSE THE BBC IS GOING THROUGH AN UNHAPPY PHASE AT THE MOMENT - WHAT WITH ITS FATHER DYING AND THE MORTGAGE AND BBC 2 GOING OUT WITH MEN.'
Voice Over (and Roller Caption): (E.I.) 'THE BBC WOULD LIKE TO DENY THE LAST APOLOGY. IT IS VERY HAPPY AT HOME AND BBC 2 IS BOUND TO GO THROUGH THIS PHASE, SO FROM ALL OF US HERE GOOD NIGHT, SLEEP WELL, AND HAVE AN ABSOLUTELY SUPER DAY TOMORROW, KISS, KISS.'
Cut to Richard Baker sitting at the traditional news desk.
Richard Baker: (Richard Baker) We've just heard that an explosion in the kitchens of the House of Lords has resulted in the breakage of seventeen storage jars. Police ruled out foul play. (pause) Lemon curry?
Fade out. Fade up on film of seashore, waves breaking on beach.
Superimposed Caption: 'INTERLUDE'
The film goes on for quite a long time. Eventually, the announcer, dressed in medieval Spanish soldier's costume, walks into shot.
Announcer: (J.C.) (to camera) Um, I'm sorry about the ... the, er, pause, only I'm afraid the show is a couple of minutes short this week. You know, sometimes the shows aren't really quite as er, long as they ought to be. (pause, he looks round at the sea) Beautiful, isn't it. (he walks out of shot; long pause; he walks back) Look there's not really a great deal of point in your, sort of hanging on at your end, because I'm afraid there aren't any more jokes or anything.
He walks out of shot. We stay with the film for quite a long time before we finally fade out.