Movie News

A Movie A Day: PAYDAY (1973)
If I was a man I’d ball you, too. God knows you’re easy enough.

Published at: Dec. 29, 2008, 2:17 a.m. CST by quint



Ahoy, squirts! Quint here with today’s installment of A Movie A Day. [For those now joining us, A Movie A Day is my attempt at filling in gaps in my film knowledge. My DVD collection is thousands strong, many of them films I haven’t seen yet, but picked up as I scoured used DVD stores. Each day I’ll pull a previously unseen film from my collection or from my DVR and discuss it here. Each movie will have some sort of connection to the one before it, be it cast or crew member.] For this installment we follow over THE SILENT PARTNER’s director Daryl Duke to today’s low budget character flick starring the great Rip Torn: PAYDAY.

This is a favorite of Moriarty’s and I know he was excited for me to finally get to it, so I’m going to have start by saying… Mori, take a seat… I know this might hit you hard, but I really, really didn’t like this movie. It’s okay, we can still be friends. You are a caring and loving soul and good mate. You have a beautiful family and are a wonderful human being. I just don’t dig on this one. And I love Rip Torn. God, do I love Rip Torn. I grew up on THE LARRY SANDERS SHOW and flicks like BEASTMASTER and DEFENDING YOUR LIFE. I love Rip Torn and he is really good in this movie, which is a big compliment to him. I’d love to see him get the chance to have more leading roles like this, but the filmmaking and script just grated on me. Basically you have a film about a second rate country singer traveling the south being a womanizing bastard, drinking, fucking, fighting and shooting his way through 100 some odd minutes. There’s no real story to the movie, but there doesn’t have to be one. Some of my favorite films are character studies and Rip Torn’s Maury Dann is certainly an interesting character, just one that I could never really connect with. Maybe it’s my complete lack of anything resembling fandom for honkytonk music or the fact that I’m a little worn out by the “troubled life of musicians” story by now… or maybe it’s just that Duke’s filmmaking wasn’t up to par and Don Carpenter wrote characters that I just didn’t care about.

I can say that Rip Torn plays it for all its worth and I respect what he did in the movie, I just don’t like it. Greasy, dirty, horny and a little to the left of normal… it’s a nice complex character and Torn chews the scenery for all it is worth, but none of that really matters if you can’t get into the story. There is an appealing aesthetic to the movie, a raw early ‘70s bit of realism that is something I usually dig as well. And don’t get me wrong. I love the rampant nudity and extreme language and moments of random violence, but it just never gelled for me in this movie. It seems to go from Rip Torn being a dick to his groupie girlfriend, then being charming to the new groupie girlfriend, then getting some Wild Turkey to drink, then going hunting, then fucking his new groupie girlfriend while his old groupie girlfriend sleeps next to them in the Caddy to him drinking Schlitz to a guy getting stabbed and then the finale, which isn’t altogether unexpected, without much connecting tissues. Shit just happens. Which is perfectly fine and good, this time it just didn’t work for me. Final Thoughts: What we have here is a great lead performance left in the hands of people who didn’t know how to capitalize on it. Unlike in Duke’s THE SILENT PARTNER, he doesn’t have a great Curtis Hanson script to build on and we’re left with a good performance in a sloppily made movie that doesn’t seem to go anyplace. Now, I’m sure if I saw this movie at another point in my life or when I was in a different mood or something I’d have more patience with it. It definitely has an audience, I’m just not a member of it. Rip Torn is still the man and the US poster (the first below the DVD cover) was great, though!

Here’s what we have lined up for the next week: Sunday, December 28th: A STRANGER IS WATCHING (1982)

Monday, December 29th: THE NEW KIDS (1985)

Tuesday, December 30th: SERIAL (1980)

Wednesday, December 31st: THE PRIVATE LIFE OF SHERLOCK HOLMES (1970)

Thursday, January 1st: IRMA LA DOUCE (1963)

Friday, January 2nd: THE PRISONER OF SECOND AVENUE (1974)

Saturday, January 3rd: THE GOODBYE GIRL (1977)

I'm going to go ahead and start up my write-up of A STRANGER IS WATCHING, following over Mr. Rip Torn, and post that tonight, which gets me up to current. When I hit that one I'll also make sure to post the remaining titles left in A Movie A Day, going up to the final movie of the column to give you guys an idea of what's left. See you folks a little later for Sean S. Cunningham's A STRANGER IS WATCHING! -Quint quint@aintitcool.com



Previous Movies: June 2nd: Harper
June 3rd: The Drowning Pool
June 4th: Papillon
June 5th: Gun Crazy
June 6th: Never So Few
June 7th: A Hole In The Head
June 8th: Some Came Running
June 9th: Rio Bravo
June 10th: Point Blank
June 11th: Pocket Money
June 12th: Cool Hand Luke
June 13th: The Asphalt Jungle
June 14th: Clash By Night
June 15th: Scarlet Street
June 16th: Killer Bait (aka Too Late For Tears)
June 17th: Robinson Crusoe On Mars
June 18th: City For Conquest
June 19th: San Quentin
June 20th: 42nd Street
June 21st: Dames
June 22nd: Gold Diggers of 1935
June 23rd: Murder, My Sweet
June 24th: Born To Kill
June 25th: The Sound of Music
June 26th: Torn Curtain
June 27th: The Left Handed Gun
June 28th: Caligula
June 29th: The Elephant Man
June 30th: The Good Father
July 1st: Shock Treatment
July 2nd: Flashback
July 3rd: Klute
July 4th: On Golden Pond
July 5th: The Cowboys
July 6th: The Alamo
July 7th: Sands of Iwo Jima
July 8th: Wake of the Red Witch
July 9th: D.O.A.
July 10th: Shadow of A Doubt
July 11th: The Matchmaker
July 12th: The Black Hole
July 13th: Vengeance Is Mine
July 14th: Strange Invaders
July 15th: Sleuth
July 16th: Frenzy
July 17th: Kingdom of Heaven: The Director’s Cut
July 18th: Cadillac Man
July 19th: The Sure Thing
July 20th: Moving Violations
July 21st: Meatballs
July 22nd: Cast a Giant Shadow
July 23rd: Out of the Past
July 24th: The Big Steal
July 25th: Where Danger Lives
July 26th: Crossfire
July 27th: Ricco, The Mean Machine
July 28th: In Harm’s Way
July 29th: Firecreek
July 30th: The Cheyenne Social Club
July 31st: The Man Who Knew Too Much
August 1st: The Spirit of St. Louis
August 2nd: Von Ryan’s Express
August 3rd: Can-Can
August 4th: Desperate Characters
August 5th: The Possession of Joel Delaney
August 6th: Quackser Fortune Has A Cousin In The Bronx
August 7th: Start the Revolution Without Me
August 8th: Hell Is A City
August 9th: The Pied Piper
August 10th: Partners
August 11th: Barry Lyndon
August 12th: The Skull
August 13th: The Hellfire Club
August 14th: Blood of the Vampire
August 15th: Terror of the Tongs
August 16th: Pirates of Blood River
August 17th: The Devil-Ship Pirates
August 18th: Jess Franco’s Count Dracula
August 19th: Dracula A.D. 1972
August 20th: The Stranglers of Bombay
August 21st: Man, Woman & Child
August 22nd: The Little Girl Who Lives Down The Lane
August 23rd: The Young Philadelphians
August 24th: The Rack
August 25th: Until They Sail
August 26th: Somebody Up There Likes Me
August 27th: The Set-Up
August 28th: The Devil & Daniel Webster
August 29th: Cat People
August 30th: The Curse of the Cat People
August 31st: The 7th Victim
September 1st: The Ghost Ship
September 2nd: Isle of the Dead
September 3rd: Bedlam
September 4th: Black Sabbath
September 5th: Black Sunday
September 6th: Twitch of the Death Nerve
September 7th: Tragic Ceremony
September 8th: Lisa & The Devil
September 9th: Baron Blood
September 10th: A Shot In The Dark
September 11th: The Pink Panther
September 12th: The Return of the Pink Panther
September 13th: The Pink Panther Strikes Again
September 14th: Revenge of the Pink Panther
September 15th: Trail of the Pink Panther
September 16th: The Real Glory
September 17th: The Winning of Barbara Worth
September 18th: The Cowboy and the Lady
September 19th: Dakota
September 20th: Red River
September 21st: Terminal Station
September 22nd: The Search
September 23rd: Act of Violence
September 24th: Houdini
September 25th: Money From Home
September 26th: Papa’s Delicate Condition
September 27th: Dillinger
September 28th: Battle of the Bulge
September 29th: Daisy Kenyon
September 30th: Laura
October 1st: The Dunwich Horror
October 2nd: Experiment In Terror
October 3rd: The Devil’s Rain
October 4th: Race With The Devil
October 5th: Salo, Or The 120 Days of Sodom
October 6th: Bad Dreams
October 7th: The House Where Evil Dwells
October 8th: Memories of Murder
October 9th: The Hunger
October 10th: I Saw What You Did
October 11th: I Spit On Your Grave
October 12th: Naked You Die
October 13th: The Wraith
October 14th: Silent Night, Bloody Night
October 15th: I Bury The Living
October 16th: The Beast Must Die
October 17th: Hellgate
October 18th: He Knows You’re Alone
October 19th: The Thing From Another World
October 20th: The Fall of the House of Usher
October 21st: Audrey Rose
October 22nd: Who Slew Auntie Roo?
October 23rd: Wait Until Dark
October 24th: Dead & Buried
October 25th: A Bucket of Blood
October 26th: The Bloodstained Shadow
October 27th: I, Madman
October 28th: Return to Horror High
October 29th: Die, Monster, Die
October 30th: Epidemic
October 31st: Student Bodies
November 1st: Black Widow
November 2nd: The Ghost & Mrs. Muir
November 3rd: Flying Tigers
November 4th: Executive Action
November 5th: The Busy Body
November 6th: It’s A Mad Mad Mad Mad World
November 7th: Libeled Lady
November 8th: Up The River
November 9th: Doctor Bull
November 10th: Judge Priest
November 11th: Ten Little Indians
November 12th: Murder On The Orient Express
November 13th: Daniel
November 14th: El Dorado
November 15th: The Gambler
November 16th: Once Upon A Time In America
November 17th: Salvador
November 18th: Best Seller
November 19th: The Holcroft Covenant
November 20th: Birdman of Alcatraz
November 21st: The Train
November 22nd: Gunfight At The O.K. Corral
November 23rd: Mystery Street
November 24th: Border Incident
November 25th: The Tin Star
November 26th: On The Beach
November 27th: Twelve O’Clock High
November 28th: Gentleman’s Agreement
November 29th: Panic In The Streets
November 30th: The Hot Rock
December 1st: Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?
December 2nd: The Day of the Dolphin
December 3rd: Carnal Knowledge
December 4th: The Cincinnati Kid
December 5th: Pocketful of Miracles
December 6th: Mikey & Nicky
December 7th: Two-Minute Warning
December 8th: The Sentinel
December 9th: How To Steal A Million
December 10th: What’s New Pussycat?
December 11th: Being There
December 17th: The Party
December 18th: Casino Royale
December 19th: The StrangerDecember 20th: Brother Orchid
December 21st: The Petrified Forest
December 22nd: Moontide
December 23rd: Notorious
December 24th: The Inn of the Sixth Happiness
December 25th: The High Commissioner
December 26th: The Silent Partner

Readers Talkback

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  • Dec. 29, 2008, 2:11 a.m. CST

    Moriarty is on crack with this film

    by HEADGEEK

    it is the very definition of bleh

  • Dec. 29, 2008, 2:12 a.m. CST

    I had chili for lunch.

    by Godovhellfire

  • Dec. 29, 2008, 2:13 a.m. CST

    Why is he on crack?

    by Aloy

    He didn't much like it either.

  • Dec. 29, 2008, 2:27 a.m. CST

    Because Mori likes this movie

    by HEADGEEK

    the writer of the article was Quint.

  • Dec. 29, 2008, 2:31 a.m. CST

    I liked it

    by reni

    For research purposes. It kind of 'felt' real. There are a lot of assholes in rock n' roll, especially back then. I want to see 'Stranger' & 'New Kids' now.

  • Dec. 29, 2008, 2:36 a.m. CST

    For some reason I want to see this

    by djscott95

    I love Rip Torn, so I will watch it. And Quint, get ready for "The New Kids", a great slice of '80's thriller. Just wish Loughlin would have thrown on some sexier panties for that one scene...

  • Dec. 29, 2008, 3:33 a.m. CST

    uhhhh....I knew that.....

    by Aloy

    sorry boys...

  • Dec. 29, 2008, 4:43 a.m. CST

    SOME GOOD TITLES COMING UP....

    by greigy just wanted to say

    The Goodbye Girl will remind you why Dreyfuss still rules.. (in a 70's time warp).. and Irma La Douce, not a pimple on The Apartment's arse and way too long, morally dubious to say the least but still moments of greatness in there and Maclaine is as cute as a button. NEVER SEEN PAYDAY BUT DJSCOTT95 IS RIGHT... FOR SOME REASON I WANT TO SEE THIS... mission accomplished

  • Dec. 29, 2008, 7:59 a.m. CST

    Terrible DVD cover

    by I am not a number

    Is that the best cover they could come up with? Looks like something that was knocked off in five minutes before the deadline. For some reason, Rip Torn looks like Kurt Russell there as well.

  • Dec. 29, 2008, 10:58 a.m. CST

    Can't believe this isn't getting some love

    by JackRabbitSlim

    First off, hands down, Rip Torn's greatest performance. No, its not the equivalent of De Niro in "Taxi Driver", correlates better to, say, Connery in "The Offence" or maybe even Ford in "Mosquito Coast". That kind of "Wow, he really could spit when given the chance" moment of epiphany that we filmlovers die for. <p> As for the film itself - yup - if you are a slave to plot - gonna hate it - this is character driven all the way. And if you think Almost Famous is anything other than bigbudgeted, sugar-coated, stars-in-my-eyes "meh", don't waste your time. I'd put this in the pantheon of "greatest music biopics" with "Sid and Nancy" and "The Rose" - ok, better than "The Rose" <p> My guess why most don't like this film is how incredibly unsympathetic Maury Dann is. He's a self-serving, megalomaniacal a-hole - aka what lead singers for the most part are. He is manipulative, scheming, corrupt, venal, and by no means glamorous - he's grinding it out in the sawdust covered gin joints and mostly-pathetic country dancehalls, dealing with shifty promoters and sleazy djs. Theres no dewy-eyed Penny Lanes in his life (and he doesnt deserve that monumentally childish fantasy either) but coke-snorting, grasping whores who are nearly as greedy as he is. But there are moments of artistic serenity in him that emerge in the most heartwrenching ways - he writes his song by opening his veins and pouring the notes out one by one. <p> This movie deserves waaay more than a cheap "meh". Give it a chance - ya just might like it.

  • Dec. 29, 2008, 10:59 a.m. CST

    Can't believe this isn't getting some love

    by JackRabbitSlim

    First off, hands down, Rip Torn's greatest performance. No, its not the equivalent of De Niro in "Taxi Driver", correlates better to, say, Connery in "The Offence" or maybe even Ford in "Mosquito Coast". That kind of "Wow, he really could spit when given the chance" moment of epiphany that we filmlovers die for. <p> As for the film itself - yup - if you are a slave to plot - gonna hate it - this is character driven all the way. And if you think Almost Famous is anything other than bigbudgeted, sugar-coated, stars-in-my-eyes "meh", don't waste your time. I'd put this in the pantheon of "greatest music biopics" with "Sid and Nancy" and "The Rose" - ok, better than "The Rose" <p> My guess why most don't like this film is how incredibly unsympathetic Maury Dann is. He's a self-serving, megalomaniacal a-hole - aka what lead singers for the most part are. He is manipulative, scheming, corrupt, venal, and by no means glamorous - he's grinding it out in the sawdust covered gin joints and mostly-pathetic country dancehalls, dealing with shifty promoters and sleazy djs. Theres no dewy-eyed Penny Lanes in his life (and he doesnt deserve that monumentally childish fantasy either) but coke-snorting, grasping whores who are nearly as greedy as he is. But there are moments of artistic serenity in him that emerge in the most heartwrenching ways - he writes his song by opening his veins and pouring the notes out one by one. <p> This movie deserves waaay more than a cheap "meh". A love of country is NOT a necessity - i fond that twangy shit just fuckin annoying. But give this movie a chance - ya just might like it.

  • Dec. 29, 2008, 1:58 p.m. CST

    Like Rip Torn?

    by Darthkrusty

    Love him in THE MAN WHO FELL TO EARTH.

  • Dec. 29, 2008, 2:21 p.m. CST

    you guys have to keep this column going

    by filmfanatic1

    This is one of the few columns on this site that shares interesting sharp comments instead of JUST nasty, ignorant, bigoted rants; can't you guys just take turns doing AMAD?

  • Dec. 29, 2008, 5:45 p.m. CST

    remarkable review

    by Napoleon Park

    in that Quint clearly didn't like the movie and yet everything he described makes me want to see it.

  • Dec. 29, 2008, 8:18 p.m. CST

    'Payday' is tits

    by neglekted

    Quiant, I shake my head in disapproval. That is all.

  • Dec. 31, 2008, 2:43 a.m. CST

    Quint - a burning question

    by Abhimanyu

    been meaning to ask - where do you get those awesome posters (including international ones) from? I live in India and it it near impossible for me to find posters or movie prints (well, Transformers I can find, but you get the idea) and was hoping someone could point me in the right direction for prints I could try putting up on my walls.

  • Dec. 31, 2008, 4:58 a.m. CST

    Damn - even this tb is tragically neglected

    by JackRabbitSlim

    For all the wasted space yammering on "Indiana Jones and the Search for his Depends" no I have a better one "Indiana Jones and The 15% Discount on all Non-Opening Matinees" stupidity, a quality film like Payday gets relegated to the dustpile of obscurity. Taint right, McGee, taint right.

  • Jan. 4, 2009, 6:53 p.m. CST

    it sounds interesting...

    by The Amazing G

    I dig Rip Torn