The Typewriter, the Rifle and the Movie Camera

Director: Adam Simon
Screenwriters: Adam Simon

Institute History

  • 1996 Sundance Film Festival


This tribute to the greatness of Sam Fuller casts a much-needed and very insightful light on the maverick filmmaker who is perhaps one of the most misunderstood and seemingly contradic-tory directors of the last several decades. Fuller has been accused of being on both ends of the ideological spectrum—of being a racist and an antiracist, of embracing war and condemning it—but few who have seen his films would describe them as straightforward or dull.

Led by the film’s executive producer, Tim Robbins, three of the most esteemed directors of our time—Quentin Tarantino, Martin Scorsese, and Jim Jarmusch—analyze and discuss this most intriguing of “independent” American directors. In three sections, beginning with his lifelong devotion to journalism and his beginnings as a tabloid reporter, and moving on to his career in the military and finally as a filmmaker, The Typewriter, the Rifle and the Movie Camera creates a sometimes sketchy, but exceptionally interesting, portrait of a man who insisted on doing things his own way. It‘s the kind of film that contains blinding moments of insight and revelation. From his use of camera, to his “stylized” realism, to his focus, indeed, insistence on story as the key element of a good movie, The Typewriter offers a loving and creative homage to a great, but too often marginalized, American icon.

— Geoffrey Gilmore

Screening Details


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