Dir: William Friedkin
Cast: Roy Scheider, Bruno Cremer, Francisco Rabal
121mins   1977   US   15   English   

This screening will be introduced by Depot's Chair of Trustees, Robert Senior

The maverick American film director William Friedkin died on August 8th 2023. To celebrate his career Depot is screening one of his greatest and most underrated movies, Sorcerer.

Sorcerer was a remake of the famous French thriller The Wages of Fear, directed by Henri-Georges Clouzot in 1953 and starring Yves Montand. Both films climax in an attempt to transport hydro-glycerin across rough terrain in a remote area of Colombia.

Friedkin directed two major movies which have become seminal classics. The Exorcist (1971) has long been regarded as one of the greatest horror films ever made and The French Connection, with Gene Hackman as Popeye Doyle is one of the all-time great thrillers. Friedkin was known to push his cast and crew hard to get the results he wanted, placing great strains on the actors. 

Friedkin was handed a large budget to make Sorcerer but the production experienced many challenges. On release it was disliked by the critics and became a huge commercial flop. But the film is one of the greatest adventure thrillers of all time, shot through with high tension and indigenous authenticity. Roy Scheider is terrific in the Yves Montand role as is the French actor Bruno Cremer, and the electronic soundtrack by Tangerine Dream infuses the production with an other-worldly power.

- Robert Senior, Depot Chair of Trustees