In 1970, Bill Gunn made a film called Stop! It was filmed on the island of Puerto Rico and apparently was given an X rating. Apparently the movie has been sitting on the shelves of Warner Bros since 70’ so about 30 years its been shelf’d. I heard once in the 80s the movie played in some Museum in NYC, either MoMa or the Whitney. Anyway I just wanted to discuss this movie and the work of Bill Gunn who also directed Ganja and Hess. If anyone knows how to obtain a copy of this, I would be MOST interested!
Here is some info on the film from the awesome blog Temple of Schlock
Also here is another bit of info
Together these make up the most info on this film on web, I’ve seen.
I hope Warner Bros releases this! they have the whole Warner Archives Collection! if you read this please send them email, urging them t o release this. Thanks.
At the Q&A after the screening of Stop! at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, Edward Bell said that he believed that it would be released in the upcoming year. I’m sure asking Warner would help encourage this to finally happen.
Thanks for your replu Mozucat! How was the screening? Was it packed, I missed it cause it was Easter! I wish BAM would do that Bill Gunn retrospective again? How was the movie?
Not as packed as I would have expected, many empty seats, but this might have been due to the time/day it was scheduled. I would love to see it re-released, fixed up with some good commentary. The version shown from the rescued VHS tape was not so good – but it was amazing. Although, if I were to say anything comprehensible about it, I think I would need to watch it a few more times. Have you read his autobiographical novel Rhinestone Sharecropping?
I just got it and I am currently reading it
Bill Gunn has other movies? Bill Gunn has novels? What what what? More info please.
I added some stuff to his Wikipedia entry – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_Gunn_(writer). It looks like Stop will be released on dvd sometime in mid-2011: http://www.facebook.com/warnerarchive/posts/174447042599410. I sure hope so.
Bill Gunn has two novels I believe and probably a collection of his plays should be out. I have Rhinestone Sharecropping but I havent finished it, started reading other stuff.
Stop really needs a release! I am glad Warners is releasing it!
Ganja and Hess is interesting. I love Ashby’s The Landlord, that movie needs to be on Criterion.
I just remembered Ganja and Hess had a DVD release, and I actually own it. I also belive, this is the complete unedited version. Saw parts of it at a theater some years ago, and it looked very fascinating. Thanks for the reminder! :-)
Well, we’re past mid-2012 now… : \
I have seen Stop! (at the Whitney retro after Gunn’s death for which Ishmael reed wrote an essay on his friend ultimately collected with other essays in Airing Dirty Laundry), and it’s simply astonishing, even in its goofier of-its-era trippy moments. The performances are all superb, up to and including Owen Roizman in his first credit as DP, Ry Cooder and Buell Neidlinger on the searingly psychedelic soundtrack (which deserves a separate audio release itself), &c., &c. Sure am hoping to catch this once more during my lifetime.
James Keepnews you are very lucky to have seen Stop! at the Whitney. Can you tell us something about it? Give us some sense of what it’s about and how it looks, etc. I would appreciate that greatly. many, many thanks in advance.