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Monday, August 8, 2011

Are you man enough for this year's Drive Invasion?

The Starlight Six Drive-In has announced the cinematic line-up for its Sep. 4 Drive Invasion festival. This year the Starlight celebrates that tough, rural pungent brand of machismo from the 1970s with Burt Reynolds' beloved Southern car-crash comedy Smokey & the Bandit; the Lee Marvin/Earnest Borgnine Depression-era train heist flick Emperor of the North; Warren Oates' backwoods drama The Cockfighter; and a 1967 country comedy called Hillbillys in a Haunted House.

Despite the iconography of Burt Reynolds' mustache and black Trans Am, Jackie Gleason's epic profanity as Sheriff Buford T. Justice made the strongest impression on me when I saw Smokey and the Bandit as a kid. I can only assume that Jerry Reed's Smokey and the Bandit theme song, "East Bound and Down," inspired the title of the Danny McBride HBO sitcom.

Could that be Lee Marvin narrating the Emperor of the North trailer? Any reference to "the king of the hoboes" has me intrigued.

"Cockfighting — The dirtiest sport in the world!" announces the trailer in this adaptation of a novel by Charles Willeford, who wrote Miami Blues and the other Hoke Mosely books. It seems inevitable that Harry Dean Stanton would be in this.

Scott Henry asked, of Hillbillys in a Haunted House, "Shouldn't that be a Hainted House?"Two stranded country singers spend a night in a house that features not just a gorilla, but a ring of international spies (played by Lon Chaney, Jr., Basil Rathbone and John Carradine). Incidentally, this is apparently a sequel to Las Vegas Hillbillys. I couldn't find a trailer, just this musical number:

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