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Showing content with the highest reputation since 02/22/2019 in Posts

  1. 9 points
    One of my greatest gripes in this world is just how LITTLE there is out there about Universal Studios founder, Carl Laemmle. Not only did he start one of the biggest movie studios in the world, but he won a Supreme Court case against Thomas Edison, and saved hundreds of Jewish families from Europe during WWII by signing affidavits for them, and setting them up with homes and jobs in the United States. Still - outside of this forum, of course - so few people have ever heard of him! Last year I got the opportunity to be a part of Carl Laemmle, a documentary feature about his life, and it's FINALLY OUT! It's honestly really well done, and I promise I'm not just saying that because I'm in it It's playing at festivals around the country (and a few international screenings as well,) with more dates to be added. Below I talk a bit more about the movie and show the film's trailer. Hope you all find a city near you to watch it, and would love to know what you think!
  2. 8 points
    Francis in the Haunted House (1956) - 4/10 Based on the epic novel by Victor Hugo, Mickey Rooney stars in this powerful examination of the resilience of the human spirit. Rooney meets a talking mule named Francis (voice of Paul Frees, doing his best Chill Wills), who warns Mickey that bad guys are murdering folks up at a transplanted Scottish castle manor said to be haunted. The mule is obviously an allegory for man's conscience, and the castle, with its attendant dangers and pitfalls, a microcosm of the world that man must exist in. Featuring stunning supporting performances from the great Mr. David Janssen as Lt. Hopkins, Virginia Welles, James Flavin, Paul Cavanagh, Mary Ellen Kay, Ralph Dumke, Richard Deacon, and Sir Timothy Carey as Hugo. A moving and evocative rumination on existentialist themes, this is one of the towering achievements in cinema history, a work of staggering genius the likes of which will never be seen again. ūü§ě
  3. 7 points
    Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter got some dates wrong.
  4. 7 points
    The Last Wagon (1956) - 7/10 CinemaScope western with Richard Widmark as "Comanche Todd", an accused murderer journeying with a wagon train to the next big town, where he'll be hanged. However, the caravan makes the mistake of entering the "Apache valley of death", and after most of the travelers are killed by hostile natives, it falls to Widmark to help the few young survivors complete their journey. Featuring Felicia Farr, Susan Kohner, Nick Adams, Tommy Rettig, Stephanie Griffin, Ray Stricklyn, Carl Benton Reid, Douglas Kennedy, Timothy Carey, and James Drury. The real star here is the gorgeous Sedona, Arizona locations, shot with an eye for scenic grandeur by cinematographer Wilfrid Cline.
  5. 7 points
    Donen also gave the best acceptance speech ever at the Academy Awards. On February 10, 1998, he received an honorary Oscar "in appreciation of a body of work marked by grace, elegance, wit and visual innovation." He proved the old saying: "Once a hoofer, always a hoofer."
  6. 6 points
    One of the great directors has left us. His legacy includes so many great and beloved films, including the very enjoyable Bedazzled, which he produced and directed. Of his musical films, I'm particularly fond of Damn Yankees and The Pajama Game, on which he collaborated with George Abbott. https://www.theguardian.com/film/2019/feb/23/stanley-donen-director-singin-in-the-rain-dies
  7. 6 points
    The Burglar (1957) - 7/10 Low-budget crime drama with Dan Duryea as the leader of a small gang of thieves who steal a valuable necklace. While they lay low and wait for the heat to die down, they start coming apart at the seams, not the least of which is due to the presence of Duryea's surrogate little sister Jayne Mansfield. Also featuring Martha Vickers, Peter Capell, Mickey Shaughnessy, and Stewart Bradley. This was shot in '55 but languished on the shelf until Mansfield's star started to rise and it finally saw release. I liked it, despite its many rough edges. First-time director Paul Wendkos shows a lot of inventiveness, and the script is more sexually frank than most at the time.
  8. 6 points
    I figured somebody must have said something bad about Hot Spell.
  9. 6 points
    I guess when somebody does what they enjoy, becomes a master at their craft , and ends up by being loved and respected by audiences and professionals alike, passing away at 94 should be a celebration of their life and not of sadness. When I was a kid, I loved all kinds of movies, except one...musicals. Why? I don't know msybe I just never saw any I liked. One day, when I was about 14 or 15 that all changed when stumbled into the world of Stanley Donen. I had gone to a double feature and in order to see the film I came for had to sit through SEVEN BRIDES FOR SEVEN BROTHERS. I was awestruck at how enjoyable and fun a really good musical could be. That started my life-long love of musicals. By now, I've seen all of his films, some many times, but each time I see one again, I remember that day I first saw SEVEN BRIDES FOR SEVEN BROTHERS and how that started it all for me. Thank you Stanly Donen!
  10. 6 points
    Crime Wave (1953) Masterpiece of L.A. Location Noir The first time I saw Crime Wave I saw something done so well that it became a favorite, it was that memorable. Crime Wave not only has some spectacular on location day and night cinematography but it also has a interesting and compelling story with both the leads and character actors to do it justice. Directed by Andr√© De Toth (Pitfall (1948)). The film's screenplay was written by Cane Wilbur from an adaptation by Bernard Gordon and Richard Wormser of Criminal's Mark, a story by John and Ward Hawkins. The films cinematography was by Bert Glennon (Red Light (1949), and the music was by David Buttolph. The film stars Sterling Hayden as toothpick chewing hard boiled Det. Lt. Sims. Gene Nelson (who also appeared in Transitional "Tail Fin" Noir 20,000 Eyes (1961)) as ex con Steve Lacey. Phyllis Kirk (House Of Wax (1953)) as his wife Ellen Lacey. Charles Bronson (Death Wish (1974)) as Ben Hastings, four Classic Film Noir vet Jay Novello as Dr. Otto Hessler, Ned Young as Gat Morgan, James Bell as Daniel O'Keefe, Dub Taylor as the Doris Day loving gas station attendant Gus Snider, Fritz Feld as Jess the bandaged man at City Hall. Hank Worden, made a living from Westerns and was memorable as quite a character from many John Ford/John Wayne Westerns usually playing an off the wall "not quite right in the head" hombre. He was in Film Noir appearing mostly in bit parts, Undercurrent (1946), High Wall (1947), Cover Up (1949), and Neo Noir Hammett (1982). In Crime Wave he is Sweeney, Steve's seemingly speech impediment challenged boss, at the Grand Central aircraft repair company. Worden's last role was in Twin Peaks TV Series (1990‚Äď1991). Timothy Carey, plays a more modern Worden contemporary, crazy grinning prototypical beatnik Johnny Haslett he's the scary type with a perpetual leer that explodes into a ___ eating grin, completely 180 from the loveable Maynard G. Krebs (Bob Denver) of six years later. This is a great late period quickly paced Noir shot in crisp Black and White that hits on all cylinders. The acting by the cast is riveting. A must film for any Film Noir collection. The use of The City Of Angels circa 1953 for both exterior and (in the case of City Hall) interior shots make it highly valuable as a time capsule of what used to be. We get Glendale, Burbank, Chinatown, the Gas Works, Owl Drugs and Union Station to boot. After watching these on location Films Noir, The Naked City (1948) New York City, Call Northside 777 (1948), Chicago, The Third Man (1949) Vienna, Act Of Violence (1949) Los Angeles, Night And The City (1950) London, Crime Wave (1953) Los Angeles, Rififi (1955) Paris, Kiss Me Deadly (1955) Los Angeles , The Lineup (1958) San Francisco, Two Men In Manhattan (1959) New York City, it's harder to believe the old backlot sets. They just can't substitute for reality. This is jarringly displayed in 1965's The Money Trap where the location shoots and what looks like a NYC street set filling in for a Los Angeles ghetto set look as if they are parts of two different movies. Bunker Hill Hollywood's seedy ready made ghetto location was being demolished in the 60's. Anyway watch Crime Wave for the various vignettes of suspects being booked, the dispatch room, the Chinatown dive flop where Timothy Carey uses a box top for an ersatz lamp shade with a drop cord plug, class. All this attention to the details by De Toth and crew makes this film something special. Included on the Warner DVD is a not to miss commentary track by Eddie Muller and James Ellroy. 10/10 Fuller review with some screencaps in Film Noir/Gangster pages
  11. 6 points
    Dodge City (1939) Grade "A" Technicolor Warner Brothers western which the studio used to introduce Errol Flynn to the genre. Flynn was concerned that with his accent audiences wouldn't accept him as a cowboy. He needed have worried, for the film would be one of the biggest box office hits of its year, and the studio would periodically cast the actor in seven other westerns over the next decade. Michael Curtiz is in peak form, this being the kind of large scale film he loved to direct. While the story is ordinary and cliche ridden (a two fisted cattleman becomes sheriff of the wild and woolley Dodge City to bring peace to its streets) everything is presented on a big scale. The film begins with a race between a stagecoach and a train, well shot by Curtiz and beautifully edited. It's an exciting opening to the film. There will later be such familiar incidents as a cattle stampede, a massive saloon brawl, an angry crowd taking the law into its own hands and a shootout on a train. But all are presented in such lavish style that you can forgive the familiarity of it all. The saloon brawl, in particular, is on such a lavish scale (and, remember, in vibrant Technicolor) that it must be ranked as a classic of its kind. In fact, the studio would use clips from this brawl to include in a number of their other westerns over the years. It must have been a massive casting call for stunt men, with crashing tables and chairs, in a free for all brawl that must last the better part of five screen minutes (I didn't time it). Ironically hero Flynn is no where to be seen in this sequence. Curtiz has a field day here, as do the stunt men. The supporting cast is an impressive one, headed by Olivia de Havilland. As per some of their previous films together Errol and Olivia do not get off to a good start in this one. But we know it will be a matter of time before the Flynn charm will work its magic upon her. The two actors do, in fact, share a charming sequence in which they stop to rest in the grass after going horseback riding together. The chemistry between the two actors is potent, Flynn indulges in some charming Irish blarney and it's the kind of light hearted romantic scene that audiences then expected of the pair. The rest of the cast features Bruce Cabot and Victor Jory among the bad guys that run the town, Frank McHugh as a newspaper editor who will hire Olivia as an assistant (Flynn has a now politically incorrect moment when he tells Olivia she should be home sewing buttons on some man's shirt instead), a disappointingly wasted Ann Sheridan as a dance hall girl, along with Alan Hale and "Big Boy" Guinn Williams as Flynn sidekicks, the first of three westerns in which they would be so cast. Alan Hale, in particular, has a great scene stealing performance in this film, with an abundance of humour mixed in. One of the highlight scenes has Hale, as a "reformed" man speaking before a temperance league of the town's women while the sounds of the film's big saloon brawl can be heard next door through the wall. When the wall finally breaks down, as the fight invades the temperance meeting, the "reformed" Hale lets out an excited holler and eagerly joins in the fisticuffs. This is an undemanding fantasy Hollywood western, with Flynn always looking perfect in beautifully costumed clothes. The actor is still convincing as a man of action, however, and it is clear from this film that he knew how to ride a horse. Bottom line: if unexceptional, Dodge City is still a fun film. SPOILER ALERT: Perhaps the screenwriters were running out of ideas when it came to the film's climax set aboard a train. Good guys Flynn and Hale are taking prisoner bad guy Victor Jory to another town for justice there when chief villain Bruce Cabot shows up to get Jory back. There's a shootout, a fire starts and Cabot and Jory leap on a pair of horses brought by other gang members riding alongside the train outside to make an escape. This is where it gets dumb. The bad guys on their horses ride in the same direction that the train is travelling! This gives Flynn and Hale the opportunity to shoot them off their horses (which they do)! A suggestion to future bad guys: the next time you're going to escape by horse from a train ride the animals in the opposite direction from which the train is travelling. That way the good guys won't have the chance to blow you out of your saddles! "I can't believe these dummies are riding along with the train. Target practice time!" 3 out of 4
  12. 6 points
    Well, Stanley Donen may be the last major figure of the Arthur Freed MGM musical unit to die. A fine dancer and director himself, he sublimated his own career and ego to make possible those legendary musicals by Gene Kelly. Stanley Donen will never get the credit that he deserves for " On the Town", "Singin' in the Rain "or "It's Always Fair Weather". But as he went on in his career to prove that he was, indeed, a major force in those Gene Kelly accomplishments and in the MGM Freed unit, he showed a profound skill and diversity in his Cinema. One of the most interesting Freed Unit musicals there ever was, wasn't produced at MGM. Stanley Donen and producer Roger Edens took the Freed unit to Paramount to make "Funny Face" because Fred Astaire wanted Audrey Hepburn and that's where Audrey was. Actually they took everyone to Paris, even Kay Thompson. LOL Gene Kelly has the reputation, and rightfully so, for being a French speaker and a knowledgeable afcionado and participant in French culture. But it was Stanley Donen who twice photographed Paris beautifully in 2 films: "Charade" and "Funny Face". He showed not just how skillfully he could select cinematic locations, but also how well he knew Paris in order to give the audience the sensational feeling of actually being there. When I first saw these films as a child, they made me want to go to Paris. I finally got there as a young adult. I was shocked to see how realistic and how brilliant Stanley Donen's work had been. Speaking of Stanley Donen's love of French culture, his last musical was a very sweet tribute to the most beloved children's book for adults in French literature, " Le Petit Prince " by Antoine St. Exupery. Unfortunately this beautiful film did not have wide distribution, but it was somewhat of a wrap for Donen because he was actually directing Bob Fosse-- the choreographer of "Pajama Game" and "Damn Yankees" in a movie-- and it was the last collaboration for Lerner and Loewe. Alan Jay Lerner had been an important part of the Freed Unit, as both Lyricist and Screenwriter. He wrote lyrics for Donen's First direction of Fred Astaire, "Royal Wedding". So the next time you see "Singin' in the Rain" and you're applauding Gene Kelly, don't forget to give a little silent Bravo to the man who was behind the camera trying to get it all right.
  13. 6 points
    His switch to the genre of suspense/thrillers was impressive. "Charade" (1963), which starred Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn, has been called "the best Hitchcock film that Hitchcock never made."
  14. 6 points
    HIS FULL DIRECTOR'S CREDITS from imdb: Note: each of these titles is a link, so if you click on it, it will take you to the film's corresponding imdb page. Another Note: seriously, how many filmmakers would be lucky as Hell to have JUST ONE of these titles to their name? Director (32 credits) 2003 The Lionel Richie Collection (Video documentary) (video "Dancing on the Ceiling") 1999 Love Letters (TV Movie) 1986 Moonlighting (TV Series) (1 episode) - Big Man on Mulberry Street (1986) ... (musical number) 1986 Lionel Richie: Dancing on the Ceiling (Video short) 1984 Blame It on Rio 1980 Saturn 3 1978 Movie Movie 1975 Lucky Lady 1974 The Little Prince 1969 Staircase 1967 Bedazzled 1967 Two for the Road 1966 Arabesque 1963 Charade 1960 The Grass Is Greener 1960 Surprise Package 1960 Once More, with Feeling! 1958 Damn Yankees 1958 Indiscreet 1957 Kiss Them for Me 1957 The Pajama Game 1957 Funny Face 1955 Kismet (fill-in director - uncredited) 1955 It's Always Fair Weather 1954 Deep in My Heart 1954 Seven Brides for Seven Brothers 1953 Give a Girl a Break 1952 Fearless Fagan 1952 Singin' in the Rain 1952 Love Is Better Than Ever 1951 Royal Wedding 1949 On the Town
  15. 6 points
    First off, this is an editorial calling for the name change, not any actual initiative on a ballot. Secondly, if the people of Orange County want to change the name of their airport, then that's their prerogative. The opinions of people who live halfway across the country from there, or even further, carry very little weight. And if they do decide to change the name, it's not as if John Wayne will disappear from the Earth forever. The changing of the name of an airport in California will have absolutely no effect on my life on the other side of the country. John Wayne will continue to exist in exactly the same amount in my life after any change to an airport name as he did before.
  16. 6 points
    Ratso Rizzo. He was a lot smarter than Joe Buck.
  17. 5 points
    So it might be set in 2019 with an aging 1980s actress. Glenn can walk around with her Fatal Attraction fright perm and has a dead rabbit upstairs that needs to be buried.
  18. 5 points
    REMEMBER THE NIGHT -- as this happens over 2 weeks, uh, which "night" should we remember? IT HAPPENED ONE NIGHT -- see above THE BAND WAGON -- no band, no wagon FUNNY FACE -- Audrey Hepburn. Enough said. THE SLIPPER AND THE ROSE -- what rose?!?!?!?!
  19. 5 points
    Michael Del Moro‚ÄŹVerified account @MikeDelMoro BREAKING via Israeli TV: Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu indicted on three counts including bribery and fraud. First time ever an Israeli PM has been indicted. The prime minister faces one count of bribery and two counts of fraud and breach of trust.
  20. 5 points
  21. 5 points
    Aaah...I love it when the good ol' boys out there in "real America" get all fired up and start postin' away on the internet! Always makes for some, ahem, "interesting reading". (...along with a few laughs)
  22. 5 points
    TCM should not be devoting an entire month to what those elitists think.
  23. 5 points
    Has to be someone non political, non controversial, no hidden past but, well known and successful. I nominate Alexa ! :
  24. 5 points
    POLITICO‚ÄŹVerified accou@politico Schiff: 'We will bring Bob Mueller in to testify' if report not made public https://www.politico.com/story/2019/02/24/adam-schiff-mueller-report-1182516
  25. 5 points
    I like the SUTS month because it's not just the bigger known films we get to see. Also, we get some days of character actors which usually don't get a SOTM nod.

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