Pit Stop (Two-Disc Director Approved Special Edition) [Blu-ray]
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RAW GUTS FOR GLORY! FLESH AGAINST STEEL!
The most dangerous game ever devised, to pit man against man, flesh against steel the figure-8 race! Jack Hill (Coffy, Foxy Brown) follows up Spider Baby, once again teaming up with Sid Haig (House of 1000 Corpses) in one of his greatest roles for this action-spectacular crash-o-rama!
Richard Davalos (East of Eden) stars as Rick Bowman, a street punk who winds up in jail after a street race goes wrong. Bailed out by race promoter Grant Willard, Davalos is put in the deadly track where he comes up against Haig s maniacal winner Hawk Sidney. Featuring an outstanding supporting cast including Brian Donlevy (The Quatermass Xperiment) in his last film appearance, Ellen Burstyn, billed as Ellen McRae (The Exorcist) and Beverly Washburn (Spider Baby) Pit Stop is one of Hill s lesser known films but arguably his greatest.
Filmed on a real figure-8 track, Hill and his crew were able to capture gripping real-life car wreck scenes lending the film a brilliant sense of realism. You ve never seen a motion picture like this before can you take it?
Director-approved Special Edition Contents:
- New High Definition digital transfer supervised and approved by director Jack Hill
- High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) and Standard Definition DVD presentation
- Original Mono 1.0 audio (uncompressed PCM on the Blu-ray)
- New UK exclusive audio commentary with director Jack Hill moderated by his biographer Calum Waddell
- Crash and Burn! - Jack Hill on the making of Pit Stop
- Drive Hard - Actor Sid Haig speaks about his experience of acting in Pit Stop
- Life in the Fast Lane - producer Roger Corman on the genesis of Pit Stop
- Restoring Pit Stop Restoration demonstration with Technical Supervisor James White
- Original Trailer
- Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Jay Shaw
- Collector s booklet featuring new writing on the film by critic Glenn Kenny and musicologist and writer Gray Newell on the film s soundtrack, illustrated with original stills and artwork
The action sequences are wild, the story is timeless, the black & white cinematography is genius, and the acting first-rate --The Examiner
An incredibly entertaining picture. I have yet to watch a Jack Hill film that I didn't enjoy --DVD Drive-In
Gearheads will thrill to see custom car handiwork by the great George Barris --DVD Talk
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Top Customer Reviews
It’s nice to see that many of the long neglected directors from the past are finally being recognized for the work they did. While many never had the opportunity to work in the major studios with mega-budgets, what they were able to achieve with nothing at all is remarkable. Among those directors of note is Jack Hill, a name few may recognize but whose movie titles you will. THE BIG DOLL HOUSE, THE BIG BIRD CAGE, COFFY, FOXY BROWN, THE SWINGING CHEERLEADERS and SWITCHBLADE SISTERS are among the movies that played drive-ins all across the country, each directed by Hill. And not another of his films makes its way to blu-ray courtesy of Arrow Video.
The story is fairly simple. A young up and coming street racers named Rick Bowman (Richard Davalos) catches the eye of racing investor Grant Willard (Brian Donlevy in his last performance). Grant posts bail for Rick when he’s arrested for racing on the streets and takes him to the track he owns where they have a weekly figure eight contest.
Unaware of what that is, Rick watches as cars circle around on a figure eight track, nearly missing each other where it crosses or crashing spectacularly in the center. He thinks of it as madness but at the same time if he wins he could possibly get the backing of Grant for future endeavors more along the lines of standard stock car racing. He agrees and heads to a junk yard Grant directs him to.
At the yard Rick works out a deal with the owner to put together a car of his own. If he wins, he pays him off, if he loses he works it off in the yard. Of course his first race isn’t near what he expected and he works to make another car. On the track he was taken out by the king of the sport, Hawk Sidney (Sid Haig), a cocky, crazy driver who thrills at the excitement on the track.
A competition develops between the two as well as bad feelings that result in an injury to Rick. They eventually settle their differences and finally their hard work pays off. Both are given the opportunity to race in an actual stock car race with Grant as their financial backer and professional Ed McLeod as their sponsor. But what will the result be with these hot headed, thrill seeking young men doing all that it takes to win?
The movie might sound like a typical drama but it’s more than that. The cinematography of the car competitions were shot at actual events that took place at an actual figure eight track. The acting by all involved is completely believable, something not usually found in a low budget film. Haig in particular does an outstanding job, showing talent that was wasted for years afterward by folks who pegged him as nothing more than a bad guy in film. And the heart of the story, about just what a person is willing to do to win makes this one much better than one would expect.
Arrow Video again tosses in some dynamite extras. Included are interviews with Hill and Haig, a short piece on the restoration of the film, an interview with producer Roger Corman and more. Online there are more than one version of this film to be had, another on its way from Kino Lorber soon, but I have to say that with all the extras included this one would be the way to go.
Better than you would expect, this is a movie that would make for a fun evening’s entertainment and might even be a hoot to couple with any number of racing or biker movies to make a double feature of it, just like the old days at the drive in.
Pit Stop (or The Winner, as it was originally called) tells the story of loner and aspiring car racer Rick Bowman (Dick Davalos), who is spotted by sponsor Grant Willard (Brian Donlevy) and begins racing in the deadly Figure 8 race. He becomes rivals with Willard's cocky champion Hawk Sidney (Sid Haig) and soon the lines of hero and villain start to blur.
Pit Stop is like a long lost racing film that ranks up there with the best of the 60s. Richard "Dick" Davalos, better known as Aron from East of Eden (or as the guy on the cover of The Smiths' Strangeways Here We Come, Best of Vol. 1 and Best of Vol. 2 albums) is perfectly cast as the rebellious Rick Bowman. He probably has the single coolest haircut ever committed to film. Jack Hill regular Sid Haig is also perfect as Hawk Sidney. Ellen Burstyn makes her film debut here as one of the racer's wives. She is also a mechanic and cheats on her husband with Rick. Lastly, the pixie-like Beverly Washburn (who was also in Jack Hill's Spider Baby with Haig) is impressive and a little mysterious (how old was she?) as Rick's girlfriend Jolene. The story takes a lot of unexpected turns and characters are not always what they seem, another strength of Hill's. In my eyes, this one is a classic. Arrow's new Pit Stop Blu Ray/DVD combo is another Winner (no pun intended) from this UK company that recently came overseas to spread joy among sleazy little girls and boys. With a beautiful transfer supervised by Jack Hill himself and a bunch of bonus features (including a booklet! Yay!), this one should not be missed! Below is a list of bonus features included here:
-New High Definition digital transfer supervised and approved by director Jack Hill
-High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) and Standard Definition DVD presentation
-Original Mono 1.0 audio (uncompressed PCM on the Blu-ray)
-New exclusive audio commentary with director Jack Hill moderated by his biographer Calum Waddell
-Crash and Burn! - Jack Hill on the making of Pit Stop
-Drive Hard - Actor Sid Haig speaks about his experience of acting in Pit Stop
-Life in the Fast Lane - producer Roger Corman on the genesis of Pit Stop
-Restoring Pit Stop - Restoration demonstration with Technical Supervisor James White
-Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Jay Shaw
-Collector's booklet featuring new writing on the film by critic Glenn Kenny and musicologist and writer Gray Newell on the film's soundtrack, illustrated with original stills and artwork
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