Eagle Pennell’s influential and satisfying 1979 Texas indie film character study, The Whole Shootin’ Match, will have a triumphant return to Austin this weekend. Coincidentally, the film will screen for a week at the Alamo Drafthouse Ritz. A coincidence, because Pennell’s 1983 follow-up film was Last Night At The Alamo (also the slogan for the original theater’s closure this summer). We screened the newly-remastered print of Shootin’ Match at SXSW this year, and it was a big hit with film fans both young and old. So, see this lost classic of regional cinema, on the big screen. Click here for details and tickets. On a related note, The Reeler recently posted a Q&A with Austin filmmaker Richard Linklater, to discuss the influence of the deceased Pennell on the eve of the film’s recent New York run. From that interview:
The Reeler: Slacker in particular seems to mine the rambling, discursive quality of Last Night at the Alamo and The Whole Shootin’ Match. Was that a reference you had in mind while writing?
Linklater: I don’t know. Eagle and I always fashioned ourselves as opposites even though we were pretty close. He was dealing with more of the country; those actors — Lou Perryman and Sonny Davis — are stereotypical Texans. I grew up around them, and I love that. But I was going for something totally different in Slacker. You don’t see a cowboy hat in Slacker; you don’t see boots. It was a much more urban, postmodern attempt at narrative. Yet I don’t disagree with you; there’s a certain pace and a certain quality that’s innate to the air we breathe down here. I totally appreciated the authenticity of his dialogue and those characters. That’s what really kind of turned me on and made it OK to portray people I know the way I know them. But that’s what people everywhere do; it was just rare in Texas.