The B-Movie Podcast: Rock ‘n Roll Fable – Streets of Fire (1984)
In honor of Shout Factory’s release of Streets of Fire, we’re taking a look at this seminal Walter Hill film (and a personal favorite of mine).
This was a staple of my childhood diet on HBO. Even as a kid I could see that this was a riff on the same story troupes and conventions that Star Wars used. Walter Hill trades Space Ships, Blasters and Lightsabers for Coupes, Nickel Plated .45’s and Pickaxes. The film is early 50’s era pop culture mashed with Hill’s sensibilities as an action director and visualist. A film set in eternal night, streets dosed in a fresh sheen of rain, lit in neon.
The brilliant mix of music, images, hard bitten dialog and visual made my head spin as a kid. What I didn’t know was that the film was a financial disaster and that no one new or cared about the film. Similar to Buckaroo Bonzai, Streets of Fire stayed with a precious few of us. From VHS to DVD and now Blu-Ray the film has stayed with us precious few. What is box office fodder 30 years ago stands as an undiscovered classic now. Let us make a case that this film deserves to be mentioned within the same breath as Hill’s other classics.
This is the first of many Walter Hill films we will be covering over the summer. Look out for the likes of Extreme Prejudice, Hard Times and others…
Release Year: 1984
Director: Walter Hill
Writer(s): Walter Hill and Larry Gross
Cast of Note: Michael Pare, Diane Lane, Rick Moranis, Willem Dafoe, Amy Madigan, Deborah Van Valkenburgh, Bill Paxton, Lee Ving, EG Daily, Richard Lawson, Rick Rossovich, Robert Townsend, Mykelti Williamson, Ed Begley Jr.