Monday, January 10, 2011

Peter The Pro

Peter Yates has died.  He directed about 25 films, a fair amount of which are fairly enjoyable.  Some highlights:

He started with Summer Holiday in 1963.  For an exploitation film starring Cliff Richard, it's actually a lot of fun.

In 1968 came Bullitt, with a car chase that revolutionized action films. (Yes, you can blame Yates. I also like the scene at airport where there's no security so private citizens can carry around guns.)

In 1972 he made The Hot Rock, a very quirky and enjoyable caper, starring Robert Redford and George Segal.

His best film, I'd say, is Breaking Away (1979), a comedy about town kids in a college town watching life go by.  Very funny, but also stirring.

As a director, Yates is hard to pin down, but at the very least he was a pro.  Give him a good script and he delivered.


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