Radio On 1979 Englands first road movie


Welcome to December.

Another uncanny planet alignment this time with the now defunct Time Out. Back in December 1979 according to the listings in issue number 502 you could see The Jam for £2.00 at The Rainbow, The Mods at the Bridge House for 50p.

At the flicks you could watch: Alien, Moonraker, The Life of Brian, Quadrophenia, Smokey and the bandit, Revenge of the Pink Panther, Rockers....a competitive launch month for the U.K's first road movie and inspiration for this seasons Anglozine clips - Radio On.

Written and directed by ex-Time Out film critic Christopher Petit, it had a head start, at least within the pages of this issue with a shout out on 5 pages.  Petit had be toying with storyline for sometime and it wasn't until he interview Wim Wenders probably the best road movie director to come out of Germany that Radio On became a step closer to fruition.   Mr Wenders egged on Petit to get his first film off the the ground and even offered to throw some money into it; clearly he believed a British road movie should finally be made.  Wim is credited on the film as associate producer which for Petits first foray into film making is no mean feet.

All two of the people I've met that have actually seen Radio On immediately comment on the killer sound track, which it is- In all honesty it might be the best thing about the film.  It wasn't a huge success at the box office but of course has gained a sort of cultish status as the cover here states 'Englands first road movie'.

 In the 1990's this is the sort of film you'd see projected in clubs like Smashing Time London, Pop-In Paris or even Max Fish NYC on a tube TV above the bar.   Its film-noir-esque leanings pinging subliminal frames of coolness to match the music.  Sure black & white can be a little faux now like a YSL Jazz perfume TV ad - but so what. 

The camera work of Radio On was an influence on the AW/21 Anglozine films. Its just a shame that the road trip in this story is from London to Bristol, which is absolutely nowhere near the M1 or the Blue Boar cafe.

Time Out Anglozine

 

Anglozine Radio On film 1979

 

Anglozine Time Out Radio On December 1979

 

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Radio On Anglozine ad 1978

 

Radio On Anglozine cinema guide December 1978