The Last Horror Film (David Winters, 1982)

Joe Spinell makes everything dirty. Whether he’s blabbing in his neon-lit hotel room wearing a gendarme’s outfit, or babbling in a nightmare, wearing an absurdly ill-fitting garish shirt and bow tie made, incredibly, of perspiration, the character actor with unruly hair and doughy skin turns the Cannes Film Festival setting of this film–whose narrative arc borrows from Contempt by way of John Hinckley, Jr., and whose message of a violent world begetting a violent cinema (or the other way around) is both obvious and subtle–into an event not so much of glitz and glamour as of shit and shambles, a Times Square on the Riviera. Doing Wes Craven meta-cinema before Mr. Elm Street himself (and even calling its film-within-a-film-within-a-film Scream), the film lets Spinell rip.

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