Moorman

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  1. Roderick Raskolnikov, Peter Lorre, graduates from a Russian University with honors. He is a hailed as a authority on crime. His mother and sister come to visit him for his graduation. When he later learns they are coming to visit him at his apartment he attempts to hide his poverty by pawning a heirloom watch he received at his graduation. At the pawn shop he meets a poor woman named Sonya (Marian Marsh) attempting to pawn her Bible. The pawnbroker is a real you know what and agrees to give her 6 rubles for the Bible, then only gives her 1 citing that Sonya owes her for other pawn items. The pawnbroker then pushes Sonya out of her shop after Sonya accepts the ruble. Roderick is looking at this with distain for the pawnbroker. He pawns his watch and finds Sonya outside looking for her ruble that she dropped when pushed out of the shop. From there, the plot takes a turn and keeps you engaged all the way through to the finale. I'm not gonna give anymore about the plot. The director, Joseph Von Sternberg, disliked the film and only did it for contractual reasons. Peter Lorre wanted the film made and it is he who carries this film and makes it actually a pretty good film. I rank it a solid 7.5 out of 10... Here is a excellent review for the film: http://sensesofcinema.com/2004/cteq/crime_and_punishment/
  2. Moorman

    Odd Man Out (1947)

    I wanted to see this because of James Mason. Carol Reed's name vaguely rung a bell so that was extra for me. The first 10 minutes of this film was classic. It was headed for classic territory all the way up until Johnny ran into that cubby hole and hid. The final 1 hour and forty something minutes turned into a limpfest. It reminded me of Robert Mitchum limping through "Where Danger Lives". I had a inkling this was gonna go downhill when Johnny stopped on the stairs after the robbery and had that hallucination thing going. After the cubby hole, the film turned into a series of encounters that just took over the film. It wasn't a heist film anymore. It was kinda like Dorothy's family and the characters in the Wizard of Oz meet Johnny on the Yellow brick rode and try to help him get back to Oz. The ending even was unbelievable. None of the characters worked up that type of engagement for you to really feel the ending. I couldn't wait for this movie to end. I spent money streaming it so I forced myself to finish it. About 2/3rds of the way through the film reminded me of where I had heard of Carol Reed's name before. Oh yes, that other movie he did that put me to sleep, " The Third Man." The only thing he did was change up the premise from this film and basically redid it and called it " The Third Man. " Same boring plot. The film " The Informer" is how you make a Irish film with these themes. The main character got to act in that one. In this one, Mason was basically a walking MacGuffin. The movie DID look good. No problems there and the sound was very good. Other than that, it literally put me to sleep several times. I rank it a 5 out of 10 and thats only because it looks soo good.....
  3. Moorman

    The Prowler (1951)

    They released THIS back in 1951 ? Wow!! This film is BRILLIANT! There is soo much going on here that I don't know where to start. Police officer Webb Garfield ( Van Heflin) and his partner answer a call about a suspected prowler at the residence of Susan Gilvray ( Evelyn Keyes). Van Heflin is smitted by her and decides to come back on another occasion to try and chat her up. He makes advances at her and Susan rebuffs him because she is married and taken back by the fact that he is a police officer and is hitting on her. Susan is not your typical femme fatale. She is quite the opposite. She is the good girl who just wants to settle down and have a family. SPOILER ALERT: Susan eventually breaks down to Webb's advances. The continued pressing that Webb did and her rebuffs were very authentic. Excellent writing here. The script was just fantastic. From Susan's giving in to his advances all the way through to the end. Van Heflin did a excellent job here. His character kinda reminded me of a mixture of Harry Powell from The Night of the Hunter and Abel from the recent film Lakeview Terrace. ( Samuel Jackson played a manic cop who terrorized a couple he initially was pretending to help.) What really sticks out here is the subject matter that this film dove into. From the adultery to the fact that its a police officer that is the manipulative con man combined a lot for a film back during that era. The film became a cult hit in France and I'm pretty sure that if it hasn't already, it will be a cult hit here in America. The cinematography was perfect. The acting, the script, the music, everything was on point in this one. I rank this a solid 9.5 out of 10 and I'm seriously debating whether to give it my rare perfect 10...
  4. Moorman

    The Prowler (1951)

    The film is almost perfect. The fact it was made in the 50s' makes it even that more special. I spent half my time admiring the film and the other time wondering how in the heck that ANY of this got past the code... Its a great film...
  5. Moorman

    Gaslight (1940)

    I've had this on my viewing list for a while now. I'm sure most of you know the plot. Paul Mallen ( Anton Walbrook) is married to Bella ( Diana Wynyard). They move into this huge mansion formerly occupied by Alice Barlow who is murdered. SPOILER ALERTS: Detective Rough ( Frank Pettingell) who has been investigating that murder, suspects that Mr. Mallen is the unfound murderer who has found a way to move back into the house. The plot reveals that Mr. Mallen IS the original murderer. In order to keep his wife from finding out about his plot to continue to search for some rubys he was seeking during the original murder, he tries to convince her that the noises he is making in the closed off upper portion of the mansion is her imagination. The plot builds tension and keeps you engaged until the climax of the film. I saw a bad copy on Youtube and I can tell this is a beautiful film to watch with restoration. On a side note, I read that MGM, which bought the rights to this British film from British National Films, ordered that all prints of it be destroyed because they ordered a 1944 remake. This failed as the negative and other copies survived. This is a excellent film which gave way to the term " Gaslighting ", a form of abuse in which the perpetrators try and convince their victims that they are crazy when its actually the other way around. Unlike the film "The Night of the Hunter" which reveals narcissism in very nuanced ways, this film is in your face about its subject matter, narcissism. I rank this film a solid 8.5 out of 10...
  6. If there is already a thread about this, my bad. I like Walter Huston so I had to check this out. I knew nothing about the movie or the book that influenced it. At first, i didn't think i would like this film. I thought the light tone of the film would dominate but it did not. The plot has enough interesting things going on that it keeps you drawn in. You cannot let it go until you find out who Mr. Owens really is. The cinematography, acting, directing and plot are on point in this one. I can see why its been remade several times. Its a very good plot. Walter Huston has a wide range of acting ability and again it shows in this one. I don't know where this was filmed but it was really done well. I rate this a solid 8 out of 10...
  7. Moorman

    Moonrise (1948)

    This is a recently released Criterion restoration. The plot surrounds Dane Clark (Danny Hawkins) as a bullied kid who grows up and kills one of his tormentors in self defense. As a adult he suffers from the trauma of what happened to his father and the resulting ridicule by the townsfolk where he grows up. Dane finds solace out in the swamps with Mose (Rex Ingram) a former railroad brakeman who himself lives in the swamp to escape society. Mose's main hobby is raising hunting dogs that he hires out for whoever needs them. The plot also centers around Dane's relationship with Gilly Johnson. Its a simple plot of redemption with both Mose and Gilly figuring prominently in Dane's redemption of what he did and what has been tormenting him. The film itself looks gorgeous. Its one of the better films I've seen that heavily features swamp scenes. There are long dull moments focusing on Dane and Gilly that drag the film down. Whenever Dane goes out to visit Mose both he AND the viewer get a welcome reprive from those long dull moments. The film got going pretty good during the last 1/3rd of it. The ending was pretty good. Overall, I rate this a 6.5 out of 10...
  8. Moorman

    Moonrise (1948)

    It IS free to watch on Youtube. I agree with the comment over at Sergio Leone board that questioned why Eddie Muller has this in his top 25 Film Noir. Criterion even recently released this. I've learned to not necessarily trust them also, lol...
  9. Charles Laughton is one of my favorite actors so I wanted to see this. I haven't read any of Agatha Christie's novels so I don't know how true to the book that the screenplay follows. The film starts off fabulously with Laughton's character inside of a car with his nurse who is doting on him and reminding him of his recent health issue. This scene came across so genuine that I was pleasantly surprised to find out that Elsa Lanchester ( the nurse) is Laughton's wife in real life. The chemistry between them through out the film was superb. SPOILER ALERTS: As most of you know the plot centers around Sir Wilfred Robarts recent health issue and his decision to try one last criminal case. Tyrone Powers ( Leonard Voles ) is accused of murdering a elderly woman he befriended that has a lot of money and changed her will and made him the beneficiary. Powers is married to Christine Vole ( Marlene Dietrich) who the defense wants to use as a witness to confirm her husband's alibi. She acts strange during her initial interview with Sir Robarts and turns up later as a witness for the prosecution. The plot was very good and ( major spoiler alert) held your interest all the way through until the RUSHED plot twists at the end. Here is my problem with the film. After winning his acquittal from the jury, Mr. Voles leaves the courtroom and his wife is brought back into the courtroom to escape a citizen's mob. She then reveals that she and Mr. Voles PLAYED Sir Robarts and the court in order to get his acquittal. Voles comes back into the courtroom after overhearing her confession and confesses to the murder knowing that double jeopardy bars any retrial. Diana ( Ruta Lee) shows up and gives Voles a kiss and its revealed that she has been seeing him and they plan to run off together with the will money Voles became the benefactor of. Ms. Voles flips out and stabs Voles killing him. Ok, I have no problem with any of that. My problem is I felt the film could've use a good 15 minutes more to drag these revelations out in a different way. I felt it was all too rushed into a implausible admittance by the Voles inside the courtroom. A better scenario would have been for Sir Robarts to find out he had been duped later on and then get the admittance from the Voles. I have no idea if the screenplay stayed true to the book or if this was some more code shenanigans. Overall the plot is simple and tight and gave the director plenty of opportunity to explore scenes outside the courtroom. Unlike 12 Angry Men you get to enjoy the change of pace of the action taking place in numerous locations. Laughton always displays a subdued flamboyance that I love in his more serious roles. Dietrich gave a fine performance and Powers really had me fooled as the film went along. Even with the ending that I felt was rushed and tacked on the excellent performances by the leading cast still allows me to give this a solid 8.5 out of 10.
  10. Let me start off by saying that when Tony went upside Cleve's head and knocked him out, i cheered...this Cleve dude (Wendell Corey) was a sucker...😁 He got a wife and kids at home but think's he is out big balling with Thelma ( Barbara Stanwyck). Through the WHOLE film, his wife Pamela ( Joan Tetzel) kept wanting him to call her so that they could talk and work on their marriage and he kept flipping her off with " later ". I was glad Tony went upside that head... My rant out of the way. This was a pretty good film even though you could smell Thelma coming a mile away. ( everybody but Cleve). In fact, the major suspense here was how far Cleve was gonna dive off into this one. He dove deep. Unlike Witness for the Prosecution, you knew that Thelma and Tony was up to something. Cleve even knew about Tony and still fell in love with Thelma. Its a credit to the director and the screenwriter that they made this predictable plot actually work. Its a good film and worth a look. Barbara did good work here even though the plot wasn't much to work with. If I had saw this back in 1950 I would give it a 8 out of 10. Adjusted for inflation, I give it a 7.5 out of 10...
  11. I watched The File on Thelma Jordan and didn't know that Siodmark directed it. I just posted a review. I knew I had seen it mentioned somewhere in the forum. Siodmark saved a weak script with fabulous directing.
  12. Moorman

    Top 10 Disney films of all-time (not pixar)

    Excellent thread. I've got to go back and watch some of these. I really loved the 1961 version of 101 Dalmations. There are some good movies listed above.
  13. Moorman

    Westerns on Retroplex & Starz

    He is a must watch for me also which is why I wanted to see Dakota. He has great range also. This was just a gorgeously filmed movie:
  14. Moorman

    Westerns on Retroplex & Starz

    I have typos everywhere in some of my posts 😃 You can tell that Brennan really enjoyed his role in this. It similar but more over the top than his role in " To Have and Have Not " with Humphrey Bogart.
  15. Moorman

    Westerns on Retroplex & Starz

    I finished watching this yesterday. It was ok. There were good and bad points in the film for me. The bad. A personal thing of mine is the tone of films. Its harder for me to get into lighter toned Westerns and Film Noir films. Out of the gate I didn't like how Hugo Haas's character was portrayed. By the time I got to Captain Bounce ( of all things) and Nicodemus, I knew this was not your typical Western. That quibble out of the way, what I did like: The cinematography in this film was just gorgeous. From the opening sequences at the Mansion owned by Marko Poli, and all the way till the end of the film. It was just about perfect. The river scenes really stood out and the corn field scenes stood out. The stunt work was fantastic also. Again, theres nothing wrong with the film, its just the tone is not my preference. I don't like Blazing Saddles and its considered a classic. I rank Dakota a 6 out of 10...
  16. Moorman

    One Way Street (1950)

    This is a pretty good noir that shifts from being a noir to sort of a Mexican Western. It stars James Mason and Dan Duryea. The plot is very simple so spoiler alerts. Mason stars as the private doctor for mobster John Wheeler played by Dan Duryea. Dr. Matson (Mason) decides to double cross Wheeler and take a suitcase full of his money and his woman and escape down to Mexico. The film also features a very short cameo by Jack Elam as one of Wheeler's goons. Back to the plot. Once in Mexico with Wheeler's woman Mason has a change of heart thats influenced by his interactions with the Mexican villagers that he helps. The film in fact takes place mainly in this village. I have no problem with that. I do have a problem with Dan Duryea's talents being wasted on a film in which he barely appears in. A lesser known actor would've been better in that role. Finally, the code jumped smack up at the end as usual and ruined the film. What really gets me here is Dr. Mason didn't get away with anything so what the code was looking for i do not know. Because of the code, I rank this one a 6 out of 10. If Mason could've got back to Mexico, I would've ranked this one a 7.5 out of 10. Its still worth a view...
  17. Moorman

    One Way Street (1950)

    I think a restoration would give it more points with viewers. That Youtube copy is pretty bad ( at least the one I saw). You can still tell it was filmed very well though. Kino or somebody needs to restore this.
  18. Moorman

    And Then There Were None (1945)

    I love this version soo much that I don't know if I wanna see another version, lol. I didn't know what to expect when i saw this version and was pleasantly surprised when it turned out to be pretty good. I'm gonna go ahead and watch the remake. Thanx...
  19. Moorman

    Island of Doomed Men (1940)

    Peter Lorre is exceptional in this as always. Its a good but not great film.
  20. I'm a Peter Lorre fan so I had to give this a look. The plot is simple. Lorre is the owner of a island in which he has a diamond mine. Appearing to want to help rehabilitate parolees he has cut a deal with the government to send the parolees to his island. The problem is they are never heard from again. In comes government agent Mark Sheldon who is tasked to infiltrate the island under the guise of a parolee. Stephen Danel ( Lorre) is apparently working the men to death. Lorre has such a tight control of the island that even his wife wants to escape. Lorre does a excellent job with this film but you can tell the Hays Code had their imprint all over it. With such a tight simple script the impact of the scenes would have had to be more profound in order to lift this film. The Hays Code made sure it didn't happen. Only because Lorre is very good here that i give it a 6 out of 10... Youtube has a very good copy of this film.
  21. Moorman

    The Face Behind the Mask (1941)

    Thanx for this list. Gonna go thru this list and find some that I wanna watch.
  22. I'm a huge Peter Lorre fan so I had to watch this. This was a very good film. Without going into spoilers, the plot is basically about Lorre who comes to New York as a immigrant. He is a jack of all trades but particularly likes watchmaking. He is hurt in a hotel fire and becomes impoverished. He meets another homeless man named Dinky ( George E. Stone) and from there the film really takes off. Its a moving gangster noir film with character studies you don't normally find in these genres. Lorre as always is on top of his game here. I rate this a solid 8 out of 10....
  23. Moorman

    My Trip to Sedona Arizona

    Back in May I took a trip to Phoenix to see some relatives. We decided to go up to Sedona Arizona to do some sight seeing. We went up into Oak Creek Canyon and took some pictures of the filming locations of some classic Hollywood Westerns. The locations include Red Rock Crossing and Bell Rock. Approximately 50 Westerns were filmed here with some of the highlights being " The Last Wagon " with Richard Widmark, " 3:10 to Yuma " with Glenn Ford and Van Heflin and "Broken Arrow " with James Stewart. Observations: Its STUNNINGLY beautiful out there. You CAN'T take a bad picture. The terrain is just gorgeous. We rode up a old road that was used by film crews and some of the heights scared the beejeebus out of me. The movies don't do justice as to how high and steep this terrain is surrounding the valley. I garnered very much respect for the film crews and actors who filmed there. You got the steep terrain, animals and the high temperatures to deal with. The tour guide we had pointed out the exact locations of some of the shots that were used in the films. The guide also said that most of the valley back during the 50s was barren of most of the trees and foilage that you see. 3:10 to Yuma was filmed on the bottom of the valley as shown in the top picture. As far as the other locations go I was particularly stunned by a high rock that Richard Widmark filmed on when he made " The Last Wagon". Here is a link to the Westerns that were fimed there: http://adayinthewest.com/sedona-info/sedona-movies/ EXTRA BONUS: We also went to the Mammoth Mines at the Goldfield Gold mines outside Phoenix. This is the site of a former real gold mining town that had several mines around it. http://goldfieldghosttown.com/?page_id=20
  24. Moorman

    My Trip to Sedona Arizona

    You live in Phoenix? Its beautiful there also. You gotta get up to Sedona. The poster you mentioned, Dargo, I'm pretty sure he or she has told you how beautiful it is up there. Also, yes, that IS a nice shot of Mitchum. It would make a excellent poster if it hasn't already. In fact, I'm gonna look. I've got a few western posters that I'm gonna put up in my theatre room once I get started on it.
  25. Moorman

    My Trip to Sedona Arizona

    There is a guy named Joe McNeill who moved to Sedona from Brooklyn and he is the definitive historian on the Sedona film history. He wrote for a publication called Sedona Monthly and from there wrote a book about the films that were made there. I found out that Orson Welles lived in Sedona for a while. I forgot to mention how beautiful the town of Sedona is. Its a very nice, small tourist attraction. Restaurants, gift shops, tours, hotels, food, you name it. Very nice. Here are some links: https://www.sedonamonthly.com/2010/history-remade/ https://truewestmagazine.com/joe-mcneill-author/ http://arizonaslittlehollywood.blogspot.com/ http://adayinthewest.com/sedona-info/sedona-movies/ Robert Mitchum at Red Rock Crossing, on the set of " Blood on the Moon ", early 1948.

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