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Sidney Furie, Director

by Randy Fuller Sep 03, 2022

Pairing‌‌‌ ‌‌‌wine‌‌‌ ‌‌‌with‌‌‌ ‌‌‌movies!‌‌‌ ‌‌‌See‌‌‌ ‌‌‌the‌‌‌ ‌‌‌trailers‌‌‌ ‌‌‌and‌‌‌ ‌‌‌hear‌‌‌ ‌‌‌the‌‌‌ ‌‌‌fascinating‌‌‌ ‌‌‌commentary‌‌‌ ‌‌‌for‌‌‌ ‌‌‌these‌‌‌ ‌‌‌‌‌movies‌,‌‌ ‌‌‌and‌‌‌ ‌‌‌many‌‌‌ ‌‌‌more‌,‌‌ ‌‌‌at‌‌‌ ‌‌‌Trailers‌‌‌ ‌‌‌From‌‌‌ ‌‌‌Hell.‌‌‌ This week, we examine three films directed by Sidney Furie, with wine pairings for each.

Sidney Furie is a Canadian-born film director who helped forge a movie industry in his home country, sort of like Canadian-born Paul Shaffer forged a musical sidekick industry. TFH Guru Daniel Kremer wrote a book about his life and, in the process, unearthed one of his early films which was thought to be lost. Good work, DK!

Furie couldn’t get much of a career going in Canada – what with no film biz to speak of at the time – but the Brits were onto him in the late 1950s as a young man who had a way with celluloid stories. He moved to England and directed horror, comedy and musical flicks before striking gold in the mid-’60s with The Ipcress Files, his dark take on the spy genre.

Furie’s previous movie, The Leather Boys, was arguably even darker. About a gay biker in London’s rocker scene, the film was pretty steamy for its time and has been hailed as a watershed moment in queer cinema. Everybody seems to be sleeping with everybody else, and no one is really all that happy about it. Ah, life in the south London suburbs – all the grit, at no extra charge.

I was tempted to pair a wine from the southern Rhône Valley with this film, due to the hint of leather one would expect on the nose. Then I found this Paso Robles Zinfandel from Four Vines, The Biker. The label shows a young lady biker who has limited the leather to her head and feet, opting for lace elsewhere.

https://fourvines.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/2016-Four-Vines-THE-BIKER-Zinfandel.pdf

1970’s The Lawyer has Furie directing Barry Newman as Superlawyer Tony Petrocelli, who would later carry the role to TV. The ripped-from-real-life story is loosely based on the Sam Sheppard murder trial, in which a doctor is sent up the river for killing his wife, then beats the rap in a second trial a decade later.

What makes a superlawyer in the days before superlawyer.com? Well, driving really fast has a lot to do with it. You have to drive fast when you spend so much time chasing ambulances. Also, you have to really care about the drunks and other losers you are keeping out of jail while waiting for the big case to fall into your lap.

The wine industry has lawyers that specialize in their needs, just like every other profession. Dickenson, Peatman and Fogarty, for instance, in northern California, can see a winery through struggles with governmental bureaucracy or vineyard title disputes – the less appealing side of the wine business. I wonder, do they offer a cut rate to namesakes of their company masthead? Ask the tasting room attendant the next time you travel to Thomas Fogarty Winery in the Santa Cruz Mountains. They may not be able to comment on current litigation, but they have a Pinot Noir that’s perfect to pour while viewing The Lawyer.

https://www.fogartywinery.com/

The 1975 black comedy Sheila Levine is Dead and Living in New York is reminiscent of, but not related to, “Tina Delgado is alive, alive!”

Delgado was a figment of boss radio’s imagination. Levine was a shy girl from Pennsylvania who hit the big city with a suitcase full of naïveté. A one night stand upsets her, and she packs it in and returns home to live with her parents. That’s not working out either, so it’s back to the Big Apple for a little more heartbreak. Critics had to type their reviews with one hand, because they were holding their noses with the other. Eh, ya can’t win ‘em all.

If you’re looking to pair a wine with a movie about a young woman’s innocence lost, how about a nice Pinot Blanc from Oregon’s St. Innocent Winery? The winemaker says he named the place after his father, who was not a saint but did carry the baggage of the middle name of Innocent. Still, he probably got less of an ass-kicking in third grade than the Boy Named Sue.

https://stinnocentwine.com/

 

 

Randy Fuller
NowAnd Zin Wine – www.nowandzin.com
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