MikeBSG

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About MikeBSG

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  1. "THE GARMENT JUNGLE" (1957)

    According to Aldrich, Columbia got cold feet about the movie after they approved it. Another big problem was conflict between Aldrich and Lee J. Cobb, who wanted his character to be more likeable than Aldrich thought it should be. So when Aldrich got sick while filming, he was called by his agent and told that Columbia had fired him from the movie. In Aldrich's own words, he didn't work for a year after that and so he went to Europe and "made four crappy movies." He didn't really get back on track until "Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?" in 1963.
  2. UNIVERSAL VERSUS HAMMER

    "The Creeping Flesh" is a terrific movie, but it isn't from Hammer. My favorite Hammer movies are the two usual ones, "Curse of Frankenstein" and "Horror of Dracula," but then I also think "Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed" is terrific, and I like the films of Roy Ward Baker, such as "Five Million Years to Earth," "The Vampire Lovers," and "Dr. Jekyll and Sister Hyde." Other late Hammer films that are good are "Plague of the Zombies," "Demons of the Mind," and "Vampire Circus."
  3. "THE GARMENT JUNGLE" (1957)

    In the book "Robert Aldrich Interviews," Aldrich keeps coming back to the fact that he was fired from "The Garment Jungle." It was one of the major disappointments of his life, and he seemed to blame the fact that he had to work in Europe for a few years after "Garment Jungle," something he thought set back his career, on the decision to fire him.
  4. Woody Woodpecker Collection Volume 2 this spring

    My daughter got this collection for her birthday this week, and we've been enjoying it. "Termites from Mars" is one of the most famous Woody Woodpeckers. "Hypnotic Hick" puts Woody in a 3-D caper, and "Hot Noon" is a very funny parody of "High Noon." "Socko in Morocco" and "Alley to Bali" are quite funny and look lovely to boot.
  5. I always liked the first "Child's Play" movie. It built nicely on the "Trilogy of Terror" fatal doll episode with Karen Black.
  6. THE HIDEOUS SUN DEMON

    Wasn't "Hideous Sun Demon" re-edited in the 80s to give it a Mystery Science Theater 3000 effect? (Not that there were people commenting on the original film, but new scenes were added to make the whole thing overtly comic.)
  7. Richard Widmark & Jules Dassin

    "Night and the City" is very good, very atmospheric and doom-laden. Gene Tierney feels as if she wandered in from another movie, but that isn't fatal. Herbert Lom is one of the bad guys, which adds a lot.
  8. I remember saying "Birdie num-nums" at the lunch table in high school and reducing one kid to hysterics. When Blake Edwards got his career Oscar, Jim Carrey came to the microphone and said "Birdie num-nums" and I broke up. "The Party" is terrific. I like the way it is a silent comedy with sound, and the inventiveness of how the filmmakers could take a simple premise, a man is invited to a party by mistake, and make such a funny movie amazes me.
  9. Man of the West (1958) -- Anthony Mann

    While I love the westerns Anthony Mann made with Jimmy Stewart and agonize over which one I like best, "Man of the West" just doesn't fit into that same category with me. I think Gary Cooper seems too "Mr. Deeds" when he shows up at the start of the film, and thus I don't really start to feel gripped by the movie until well into its running time. Having said that, I have to say that the fight between Cooper and Jack Lord is terrific. It is extremely intense, and the dislike between the characters nearly burns a hole in the screen. The final Cooper-Cobb confrontation is also superb. But between these islands lies too much flatness for me.
  10. Something Wicked This Way Comes

    According to "The Bradbury Chronicles," a biography of Ray Bradbury that came out about 3 or so years ago, Bradbury's script for the movie was rewritten by John Mortimer ("Rumpole of the Bailey") at the behest of director Jack Clayton. Bradbury ended up really hating the film. (Apparently, Bradbury originally wrote the novel as a screenplay for Gene Kelly back in the late Fifties or early Sixties.) For years, Bradbury and Sam Peckinpah attempted to make "Something Wicked This Way Comes" but with no luck.
  11. Homage to the Original Outer Limits

    All three episodes with Robert Culp are very good. "The Architects of Fear" is like a noir "Day the Earth Stood Still" "Corpus Earthling" has an "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" feel. "Demon with a Glass Hand" is a gem. You probably know that Ellison sued James Cameron and "the Terminator" people over this one. I also like "Don't Open till Doomsday" in which Buck Taylor (who would become Newly on Gunsmoke) is the hero. The story feels like a cross between H. P. Lovecraft and "Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?" My favorite episode is "The Bellero Shield," in which a greedy family tries to exploit an alien. This one led to a shattering conclusion. However, I think I prefer "Twilight Zone" and the Gothic episodes of "thriller" to "The Outer Limits."
  12. Mother of Tears

    My favorite Argento films are "Bird With Crystal Plumage," "Inferno" and "Tenebrae." I think I prefer the work of Mario Bava to Argento. "Black Sabbath," "The Whip and the Body," "Kill Baby Kill" and "Lisa and the Devil" are all well worth watching.
  13. Boris Karloff's Thriller

    I like the Gothic episodes of "Thriller" a lot. there were some regular crime episodes as well, which was part of the show's problem. My favorite episodes: "the Cheaters" about cursed eyeglasses. "The Hungry Glass" a haunted house story. "Well of Doom," directed by John Brahm with a lot of visual references to silent film. "The Devil's Ticket" written by Robert Bloch, a very clever sell-your-soul story. "Terror in Teakwood" a severed hand story. "Prisoner in the Mirror" diabolically clever. "The Grim Reaper" written by Bloch about a cursed painting. "Pigeons from Hell" a haunted house story based on a Robert E. Howard (Conan the Barbarian) story. "What Beckoning Ghost?" stylishly directed. "The Weird Tailor" written by Bloch from his own story. "La Strega" great performance by Jeanette Nolan as the title character "The Incredible Dr. Markesan" fine performance by Karloff.
  14. Mother of Tears

    I liked "Inferno" more than I liked "Suspira," and I found Argento's "Opera" and "Phantom of the Opera" to preposterous to enjoy. However, I will try to see this one someday.
  15. Kwaidan

    I saw it on DVD a few years ago and on the big screen about 25 years ago. My favorite part of the movie is "Hochi the Earless," which has a clever plot and looks spectacular. The samurai battle at sea that begins the segment and sets up the ghost story is unforgettable.

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