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...tick...tick...tick

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Thumbs up on this one. Glad TCM showed it last night (during the first week of Fredric March as SOTM).

 

Tick_Tick_Tick_1970.jpg

 

First, I love the title...the opening credits were great, and the assortment of character actors (including Dub Taylor) add a lot of background flavor, so does the on-location filming.

 

I think it's a perfect companion piece to IN THE HEAT OF THE NIGHT, which obviously inspired it. Except in this instance the black lawman (Jim Brown) is a southerner, pushing out a white lawman (George Kennedy) when a dramatic shift of power occurs. Freddie plays the problem-riddled mayor, and he deliciously nibbles on the scenery.

 

What I most liked about the plot is that the new sheriff is forced to deal with law-breaking, in addition to racism. In fact, the law-breaking becomes a bigger issue. He has to arrest not only a white man but a black man...and he faces criticism on all sides. The relationship between him and the former sheriff, as well as the mayor, really gets at the complex relationship of small-town justice and politics.

 

However, there are a few cliches. Why does it always have to be hot in the south? Why don't these stories ever take place in the winter, when it's cooler? Watching Freddie fan himself in one scene was reminiscent of INHERIT THE WIND.

 

And though I enjoyed the film overall, I think the soundtrack could've been improved. There was an odd juxtoposition of asychnonous folk music and synchronous country music. We hear synchronous country music playing on the jukebox at the bar and radios around town. But why is there a folk song during the chase scene through the woods and during the climactic bridge confrontation scene? I know it was 1970, but I would've eliminated all the folk songs and just used Faren Young and Hank Williams.

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I live in Alabama and I promise you that it's unbearable hot here in the summer (actually it can start as early as March.) I remember one New Year's Eve that it was 75 degrees (although within a week we had a 10 inch snowstorm.) Every summer I wish I was in Canada or at least out west where it's less humid.

 

I'm sorry I didn't DVR ...tick x3. Sounds good. Maybe TCM will replay it.

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helenbaby (hey, I can't say helen, baby, because you're already helenbaby) -I have two things to say.

 

1: I just got back from a trip to the American South -Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi, and I was going to respond to MFF as you did - my experience was that it was hot, hot, hot ! Every day was at least 35 degrees (sorry, that's about 90 degrees F.)

 

2: No point wishing you were in Canada during the summer -it's just as hot here! Only thing is, it starts later and ends earlier. Our summers run from about June to late September, and believe me, it can get pretty HOT. This summer in Ontario was exceptionally bad, with highs hitting 40 degrees - er, that's over 90 F.

 

MyFavouriteFilm: one of the fascinating and gothic aspects of The South is the Heat; that's one (of many) things it's famous for, so why would a filmmaker want to be perverse and make a film set in The South in cool weather. I've always thought the almost oppressive heat and humidity plays almost like a silent but very present character in many films I've seen that are set in The South. When it's hot, it's hot (baby).

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I just remember one June being on PEI and how great the weather was.

 

Tennessee Williams set Period of Adjustment in Mississippi at Christmas time and in the film there's snow on the ground and people in heavy coats. That rarely happens down this way.

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This does sound good. Never seen it. Miss Wonderley is right. In some stories (see Tennessee Williams), the heat is a strong and commanding presence. Hank Williams? Faron Young? Sounds like a good background. Some my fellow southerners think I hate country music. Not so. I hate BAD country music! It wasn't always like it is today.

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I just recently saw *Baby Doll*, also based on a Tennessee Williams play, also set in Mississippi (I think.) What was really weird about it was, I couldn't figure out what time of year it was supposed to be -well, November, I guess, because Carrol Baker's 20th birthday was coming up, and her birthday was in November. But - do the trees lose their leaves, they way they do in the north? Or was Elia Kazan just trying to make the ruined and spooky old plantation look even more so (ruined and spooky) with the bare trees?

 

Prince Edward Island - yeah, baby! That is one beautiful place; even it can get hot, though, although perhaps not as hot as the more inland parts of Canada.

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You missed a good film. It's an MGM title, so it should be fairly easy for them to air it again (and let's hope they do).

 

I don't think it would be perverse to set a story in the winter in the south. Crime and passion occur all year round. I think it becomes cliched after awhile to see these stories always occurring in the languid summer months. The weather becomes a character, but usually a predictable one. This film had the requisite thunder and rainstorm.

 

It was obviously not a big budget film, but I think the director and actors accomplished a lot with the story. In a way, it really did point to the shifts in power that were beginning to happen in the U.S. Running for sheriff, running for mayor, and in recent times running for higher political office like senator or president...all of that had to start somewhere.

 

...TICK...TICK...TICK gives us plenty of food for thought. It shows how pride has to be set aside and a community has to work together to overcome its greatest problems.

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> {quote:title=misswonderly wrote:}{quote}

> I just recently saw *Baby Doll*, also based on a Tennessee Williams play, also set in Mississippi (I think.) What was really weird about it was, I couldn't figure out what time of year it was supposed to be -well, November, I guess, because Carrol Baker's 20th birthday was coming up, and her birthday was in November. But - do the trees lose their leaves, they way they do in the north? Or was Elia Kazan just trying to make the ruined and spooky old plantation look even more so (ruined and spooky) with the bare trees?

>

> Prince Edward Island - yeah, baby! That is one beautiful place; even it can get hot, though, although perhaps not as hot as the more inland parts of Canada.

 

 

Oh, yes we have beautiful fall foliage here and elsewhere in the South--it isn't always stifling weather. In fact, last winter it snowed quite a few times in Jan & Feb, but then we might have several mild winters in a row. When I mentioned the 10 inch snow we had in my previous post (it was around 1985 or 1986) I think it got back up in the 60's within a few days. You can usually get by with sweaters or a light coat. Rarely do I break out the winter coat, but then again when you're a woman of a certain age, coats aren't necessary, if you know what I mean.

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Dear Miss--I live in the "Level", not flat Midwest that William Inge came from and wrote about.

 

We get plenty hot here too---

 

*Picnic*, *Splendor in the Grass*--for starters. It gets very hot here--we had 105 averages in June.

 

William Holden said the shoot for "Picnic" was the "hottest" he'd ever been on. (He wasn't just talking about Kim Novak.)

 

Edited by: cujas on Oct 6, 2010 6:19 PM

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I have a feeling this film is going to be among my most favorite of the week. It really made a grand impression on me.

 

A few other titles I had high hopes for turned out to be disappointments. But ...TICK...TICK...TICK was an unexpected treat.

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Not to get sidetracked, but I recently saw a list of all radio stations in the USA, broken down by format. In a decisive runaway, there are MANY more stations with a C&W format, by far, than any other format.

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To paraphrase Phyllis Diller, a bottle of aspirin can help. You take the cotton out of the bottle and put it in your ears!

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I think it becomes cliched after awhile to see these stories always occurring in the languid summer months.

 

I agree. A little variety adds a new level of interest to the story. Similarly, film noir doesn't have to take place in an urban area. Small towns are creepy and suspicious in a different way. If you're not the sherriff's cousin, you're a suspect!

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On my recent trip to the (Southern) States, I noticed country music playing in almost all the restaurants I went to. (Not in Savannah, though.). I liked it, even though most of it was "bad" or at least newer country music. I liked it not so much for the music itself, as for it's confirming an idea I had about the South that did not disappoint me. (Stereotypes confirmed -although agreed, one cannot base one's notions of an entire culture on a few visits to a few truck stops.) :)

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> {quote:title=helenbaby wrote:}{quote}

> I live in Alabama and I promise you that it's unbearable hot here in the summer (actually it can start as early as March.) I remember one New Year's Eve that it was 75 degrees (although within a week we had a 10 inch snowstorm.) Every summer I wish I was in Canada or at least out west where it's less humid.

>

> I'm sorry I didn't DVR ...tick x3. Sounds good. Maybe TCM will replay it.

 

I believe this movie has aired on TCM before, hasn't it? I did not see or record it on October 5, but I seem to remember recording it a year or two ago and having to deal with the unusual title when creating a title for the recording, with all the ellipses and no capitalized words.

 

So if it has been on before, I'm sure TCM will air it again. It is a good movie.

 

I live in North Carolina and while I'm sure Alabama is a lot hotter and more humid than NC, it was routinely 90 degrees or higher this summer in NC and the humidity was very bad. I spent the last month of the summer in SC and immediately upon arrival in SC it seemed as hot and humid as it had been in NC, but no more so. It seems it is just generally hot and humid all over the South. I also remember one December in NC when the temperature reached 90 degrees one day. Then it was back in the 50s the next day. Hard to know what to wear from one day to the next in the winter in NC.

 

I too yearn for the less humid West sometimes in the summer--I spent the 4th of July in Santa Ana, CA one year and it was too cold to swim in the pool at night, even for me, the most heat-sensitive person I have ever known. A drier climate seems to allow for considerable temperature drops at night. When we got back to NC we were told the 4th of July in NC had been so humid you could have stayed in the pool all night long...

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