Catch My Soul (1974)

PG | 95 or 97 mins | Musical | 1974

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HISTORY

The summary for this unviewed film was derived from contemporary reviews. The story is a modern retelling of William Shakespeare’s Othello and largely follows the plot of the play.
       According to a 3 Mar 1968 LAT article, a stage version of Catch My Soul debuted 5 Mar 1968 at Los Angeles, CA’s, Ahmanson Theatre, and met with financial success, as stated in the 27 Mar 1974 Var review of the film, taking in $489,974 during its six-week run.
       Principal photography commenced 9 Oct 1972 in Santa Fe, NM, according to an 11 Oct 1972 Var brief, and in Nov 1973, the filmmakers switched to a nights-only shooting schedule, as stated in a 3 Nov 1973 HR item. A 25 Oct 1972 DV news item noted that a Cinemobile Mark VI equipment truck was used throughout filming.
       A 19 Nov 1972 article in The New Mexican stated that 150 Santa Fe residents served as both audience members and background performers at a live concert filmed for Catch My Soul. The article also reported that Raleigh Gardenhire, a local resident and head of the Santa Fe Ski Club, was cast as the sidekick to "Iago"; Greta Ronningen provided "leather work for the costumes"; and Tex Reed, a Santa Fe resident who had worked on previous motion pictures shot in the area, provided props.
       Critical reception was mixed. Though Var praised the film in its 27 Mar 1974 review, citing the direction, photography, and editing as high points, the 22 Mar 1974 HR review criticized the “editing ... More Less

The summary for this unviewed film was derived from contemporary reviews. The story is a modern retelling of William Shakespeare’s Othello and largely follows the plot of the play.
       According to a 3 Mar 1968 LAT article, a stage version of Catch My Soul debuted 5 Mar 1968 at Los Angeles, CA’s, Ahmanson Theatre, and met with financial success, as stated in the 27 Mar 1974 Var review of the film, taking in $489,974 during its six-week run.
       Principal photography commenced 9 Oct 1972 in Santa Fe, NM, according to an 11 Oct 1972 Var brief, and in Nov 1973, the filmmakers switched to a nights-only shooting schedule, as stated in a 3 Nov 1973 HR item. A 25 Oct 1972 DV news item noted that a Cinemobile Mark VI equipment truck was used throughout filming.
       A 19 Nov 1972 article in The New Mexican stated that 150 Santa Fe residents served as both audience members and background performers at a live concert filmed for Catch My Soul. The article also reported that Raleigh Gardenhire, a local resident and head of the Santa Fe Ski Club, was cast as the sidekick to "Iago"; Greta Ronningen provided "leather work for the costumes"; and Tex Reed, a Santa Fe resident who had worked on previous motion pictures shot in the area, provided props.
       Critical reception was mixed. Though Var praised the film in its 27 Mar 1974 review, citing the direction, photography, and editing as high points, the 22 Mar 1974 HR review criticized the “editing job” as one that “decimate[d] all logic” and called the film “flat, monotonous and paced like a funeral dirge.” In his 23 Mar 1974 NYT review, Vincent Canby ridiculed the screenplay’s mix of Shakespearean language with modern-day “jive” talk.
       After Catch My Soul failed at the box-office during its initial release, New Line Cinema purchased distribution rights with plans to re-release it under the new title, Santa Fe Satan, as reported in a 7 Oct 1974 HR article.
       The film marked singer Richie Havens’s feature motion picture acting debut as well as actor Patrick McGoohan’s directing debut, as stated in the 22 Mar 1974 HR review.







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GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
1 Apr 1974
p. 4676.
Daily Variety
7 Sep 1972.
---
Daily Variety
25 Oct 1972.
---
Daily Variety
20 Sep 1974.
---
Hollywood Reporter
3 Nov 1972.
---
Hollywood Reporter
4 Oct 1972.
---
Hollywood Reporter
22 Mar 1974
p. 3, 20.
Hollywood Reporter
7 Oct 1974.
---
Los Angeles Times
3 Mar 1968
Section D, p. 1, 28.
New York
25 Mar 1974.
---
New York Times
23 Mar 1974
p. 20.
The New Mexican
19 Nov 1972
p. 19.
Time
29 Apr 1974.
---
Variety
11 Oct 1972.
---
Variety
27 Oct 1972.
---
Variety
27 Mar 1974
p. 14, 24.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
PRODUCERS
Prod
Exec prod
WRITER
Scr
PHOTOGRAPHY
Photog
ART DIRECTOR
Des consultant
FILM EDITORS
Structured by
Film ed
COSTUMES
Leather work
MUSIC
Mus prod and arr
Background score
Orchestral choral mus
Mus ed
Mus ed
SOUND
Supv sd ed
PRODUCTION MISC
Asst prod
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the play The Tragedy of Othello, The Moor of Venice by William Shakespeare (London, ca. 1604, published 1622).
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
Santa Fe Satan
Release Date:
1974
Premiere Information:
New York opening: 22 March 1974
Production Date:
began 9 October 1972 in Santa Fe, NM
Physical Properties:
Sound
Color
DeLuxe
Duration(in mins):
95 or 97
MPAA Rating:
PG
Country:
United States
Language:
English
SYNOPSIS

At a commune in New Mexico, an African-American preacher named Othello marries Desdemona, a white convert. On the night of their wedding, Othello entrusts Cassio, an alcoholic, to temporarily take over his post, but Cassio is tempted by one of the congregants, Iago, to drink again. An orgy involving the entire commune ensues. Discovering the orgy, Othello is outraged, and he and Desdemona leave to start a new church elsewhere. Sometime later, duped by Iago’s scheming, Othello murders ... +


At a commune in New Mexico, an African-American preacher named Othello marries Desdemona, a white convert. On the night of their wedding, Othello entrusts Cassio, an alcoholic, to temporarily take over his post, but Cassio is tempted by one of the congregants, Iago, to drink again. An orgy involving the entire commune ensues. Discovering the orgy, Othello is outraged, and he and Desdemona leave to start a new church elsewhere. Sometime later, duped by Iago’s scheming, Othello murders Desdemona. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.