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TopBilled

Classic Missing in Action

592 posts in this topic

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012. *IMPACT* (1949)...United Artists...Brian Donlevy, Ella Raines, Charles Coburn

 

From bengelson at the IMDB:

 

This film noir has three distinct movements. Brian Donlevy proves masterful at playing a high-powered executive, self-satisfied and in control. As in any good drama, his secure world is assaulted and turned upside down. The film portrays his character's descent, loss of faith and subsequent redemption. Donlevy handles each of the stages well.

 

Helen Walker is brilliant as Donlevy's wife. Her ability to portray a duplicitous and homicidal spouse is immaculate in its delivery.

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013. *THE TEXAS RANGERS* (1936)...Paramount...Fred MacMurray, Jack Oakie, Jean Parker

 

From FightingWesterner at the IMDB:

 

On a whim, bandits Fred MacMurray and Jack Oakie enlist in the Texas Rangers. The two partner up with old pal Lloyd Nolan for some crooked schemes, but soon hear the call of duty, putting them at odds with their criminal lifestyle.

 

Like his most famous film, THE CHAMP, director King Vidor imbues this with depression-era sensibilities and sentimentality, having lovable bums MacMurray and Oakie find self-respect, romance, and a sense of selflessness, all with a young orphan in tow. Photography, direction, and action sequences are all first rate.

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.01 MAGIC TOWN (1947)...RKO...James Stewart, Jane Wyman, Kent Smith

 

.02 THE FAN (1949)...20th Century Fox...Jeanne Crain, Madeleine Carroll, George Sanders

 

.03 MISSISSIPPI GAMBLER (1953)...Universal...Tyrone Power, Piper Laurie, Julia Adams

 

.04 KISS THE BLOOD OFF MY HANDS (1948)...Universal...Joan Fontaine, Burt Lancaster, Robert Newton

 

.05 JOAN OF OZARK (1942)...Republic...Judy Canova, Joe E. Brown, Eddie Foy Jr.

 

.06 HER HUSBAND'S AFFAIRS (1947)...Columbia?...Lucille Ball, Franchot Tone, Edward Everett Horton

 

.07 RUTHLESS (1948)...Eagle-Lion...Zachary Scott, Louis Hayward, Diana Lynn

 

.08 TENNESSEE'S PARTNER (1955)...RKO...John Payne, Ronald Reagan, Rhonda Fleming

 

.09 GENTLEMAN AFTER DARK (1942)...United Artists...Brian Donlevy, Miriam Hopkins, Preston Foster

 

.10 KLONDIKE ANNIE (1936)...Paramount...Mae West, Victor McLaglen, Phillip Reed

 

.11 PATRICK THE GREAT (1945)...Universal...Donald O'Connor, Peggy Ryan, Frances Dee

 

.12 TEXAS LADY (1955)...RKO...Claudette Colbert, Barry Sullivan, Ray Collins

 

.13 SPAWN OF THE NORTH (1938)...Paramount...George Raft, Henry Fonda, Dorothy Lamour

 

.14 DANCING IN THE DARK (1950)...20TH Century Fox...William Powell, Mark Stevens, Betsy Drake

 

.15 THE GOLDEN GLOVES STORY (1950)...Eagle-Lion...James Dunn, Kevin O'Morrison, Kay Westfall

 

.16 BIG BROWN EYES (1936)...Paramount...Cary Grant, Joan Bennett, Walter Pidgeon

 

.17 FLIGHT FOR FREEDOM (1943)...RKO...Rosalind Russell, Fred MacMurray, Herbert Marshall

 

.18 SO THIS IS NEW YORK (1948)...United Artists...Henry Morgan, Rudy Vallee, Bill Goodwin

 

.19 JOE BUTTERFLY (1957)...Universal...Audie Murphy, George Nader, Keenan Wynn

 

.20 MRS. WIGGS OF THE CABBAGE PATCH (1934)...Paramount...Pauline Lord, W.C. Fields, ZaSu Pitts

 

.21 DON JUAN QUILLIGAN (1945)...20th Century Fox...William Bendix, Joan Blondell, Phil Silvers

 

.22 LISBON (1956)...Republic...Ray Milland, Maureen O'Hara, Claude Rains

 

.23 DARK CITY (1950)...Paramount...Charlton Heston, Lizabeth Scott, Viveca Lindfors

 

.24 TWIST OF FATE (1954)...United Artists...Ginger Rogers, Lilly Kann, Stanley Baker

 

.25 THE JUDGE STEPS OUT (1949)...RKO...Alexander Knox, Ann Sothern, George Tobias

 

.26 THUNDER IN THE SUN (1959)...Paramount...Susan Hayward, Jeff Chandler, Jacques Bergerac

 

.27 THE LOVES OF CARMEN (1948)...Columbia...Rita Hayworth, Glenn Ford, Ron Randell

 

.28 ONE RAINY AFTERNOON (1936)...United Artists...Francis Lederer, Ida Lupino, Hugh Herbert

 

.29 WOMAN ON THE RUN (1950)...Universal...Ann Sheridan, Dennis O'Keefe, Robert Keith

 

.30 BUNCO SQUAD (1950)...RKO...Robert Sterling, Joan Dixon, Ricardo Cortez

 

.31 THE SHEPHERD OF THE HILLS (1941)...Paramount...John Wayne, Betty Field, Harry Carey

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>Isn't KISS THE BLOOD OFF MY HANDS a Universal release?

 

Thanks for the correction, cody. I will change it on the earlier post. If you spot any other errors, please let me know!

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*MAGIC TOWN* (1947)...RKO...James Stewart, Jane Wyman, Kent Smith

 

From Robert Short at the IMDB:

 

A movie like MAGIC TOWN will probably seem hopelessly old-fashioned and dated, but for those who prefer a quieter and more gentle humour, it will fill the bill very nicely.

 

Very Frank Capra-like (not surprisingly since screenwriter Robert Riskin collaborated with Capra numerous times), MAGIC TOWN reminds us of a by-gone era, a time when living in a small town meant knowing your neighbours, pride in your community, and that moral values of common decency and humility were still part of everyday life.

 

James Stewart as the pollster who discovers a town full of people whose opinions exactly mirror the national thinking gives his customary good performance, as does Jane Wyman as the newspaper publisher who wants to see change in the town. Many well-known character actors (Kent Smith, Wallace Ford, Ann Shoemaker and particularly Ned Sparks) provide capable support.

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This movie isn't really missing in action. It's just that I would like to see a non-public domain presentation in it's original theatrical aspect ratio. The movie is THE PROUD REBEL with Alan Ladd , Olivia de Havilland, and David Ladd. This is one of Alan Ladd's better films of the late '50's.

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TopBilled, Shepherd of the Hills is available on DVD as part of the John Wayne, An American Icon Collection.

 

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Thanks, Tom.

 

Probably 85% of the titles I will be covering in this thread are not commercially available on home video (SHEPHERD OF THE HILLS, as you pointed out, is available). But these other 15% are missing in action on TCM.

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I think PROUD REBEL is worth mentioning. A public domain print is obviously better than nothing, but seeing the film the way the makers intended is what we want. So, technically, a clean, restored print is still M.I.A.

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*THE FAN* (1949)...20th Century Fox...Jeanne Crain, Madeleine Carroll, George Sanders

 

From imogensara_smith at IMDB:

 

When I got home from a screening of THE FAN I sat down to re-read 'Lady Windermere's Fan,' and came to the conclusion that the film is significantly better than the play. I don't think this opinion is as heretical as it sounds.

 

Wilde's literary reputation rests largely on his exquisite aphorisms and his one perfect work, 'The Importance of Being Earnest,' my nominee for the funniest play ever written. Before he hit his stride with 'Earnest,' Wilde's plays were an awkward hybrid of sophisticated comedy and stilted melodrama, with creaky plots that heavy-handedly flogged their worthy message of tolerance. There is always a woman with a past, an acidulous dandy, a shameful secret, and a self-righteous young man or woman who has to come to terms with that secret.

 

Otto Preminger seems like a poor choice to interpret Wilde. He did not have a light touch, and anyone expecting sly, frothy comedy from THE FAN will be disappointed. (Watch the Lubitsch silent version instead.) Preminger downplays the comedy-of-manners aspect without eliminating or destroying it, but he succeeds in translating the cardboard melodrama into something subtle, complex and moving.

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*THE MISSISSIPPI GAMBLER* (1953)...Universal...Tyrone Power, Piper Laurie, Julie Adams

 

From bkoganbing at the IMDB:

 

MISSISSIPPI GAMBLER was Tyrone Power's first film away from Twentieth Century Fox since Darryl Zanuck loaned him to MGM for MARIE ANTOINETTE. Ty produced this one and filmed it under the banner of Universal-International. It got deserved good reviews.

 

No actor in the history of cinema was better suited to period pieces and costumes as Tyrone Power. If Power had been possessed of a good singing voice he'd have made the ultimate Gaylord Ravenal.

 

As Mark Fallon he's a gentlemen riverboat gambler who gets involved with a pair of women, the spoiled Piper Laurie from an aristocratic New Orleans family and Julie Adams, a down to earth person of few pretensions, but she comes to love Ty deeply. Who could blame her.

 

Ty and partner John McIntire own a gambling palace where honest games of chance are the rule. They don't need to cheat because they're both the best at their trade.

 

The villain of the piece is John Baer, Laurie's weakwilled and spoiled brother. He becomes a truly hateful person in this film, the kind audiences love to hiss.

 

Making a film debut here is Dennis Weaver as a man who goes broke at Power's tables and then commits suicide. You could tell Weaver was going to have a big career from this brief role.

 

If Universal had used one of their contract players for MISSISSIPPI GAMBLER, the part would undoubtedly have been played by the fast rising Rock Hudson. But I don't think Rock could have touched what Power did in a role perfectly suited for him.

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*KISS THE BLOOD OFF MY HANDS* (1948)...Universal...Joan Fontaine, Burt Lancaster, Robert Newton

 

From prometheeus at the IMDB:

 

Burt shows off in this rare British-based film noir. There were skillful in-jokes about Burt's circus skills within the film in at least two scenes. At one point in the film he gets whipped with his shirt off. The old guideline of you can show someone getting whipped, but you can't hear it hitting. Or you can hear the hitting, but not show the whip hitting the skin remains true within this movie. The illuminating Joan as a blonde shows her range as an actress as well as her slight British accent. Again Burt was good as a man trying to overcome his moments of instant rage. The quality of the new 35mm print was incredible.

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If these titles have been mentioned before please forgive the repetition. THE APPRENTICESHIP OF DUDDY KRAVITZ , THE MACOMBER AFFAIR , CEILING ZERO , COME FILL THE CUP , FROM THIS DAY FORWARD , and WHITE BANNERS.

 

 

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Of those you just listed, I have a layout for MACOMBER AFFAIR and FROM THIS DAY FORWARD planned in the coming months.

 

I probably will not include CEILING ZERO or WHITE BANNERS as both are Warner Brothers films and those titles have a better chance of showing up on TCM due to their inclusion in the Time Warner/Turner Library (not always a guarantee, I know).

 

DUDDY KRAVITZ is from 1974 and I am only covering 1934 to 1960 in this survey.

 

I will add COME FILL THE CUP. Thank you.

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*JOAN OF OZARK* (1942)...Republic...Judy Canova, Joe E. Brown, Eddie Foy Jr.

 

From bkoganbing at the IMDB:

 

JOAN OF OZARK finds Judy in her hillbilly persona accidentally shooting down a carrier pigeon that is carrying secret coded messages from a Nazi spy headquarters in The Ozarks. Immediately she's proclaimed a national heroine, but in Berlin she's the deepest darkest kind of villain impeding the Nazi war machine. Orders straight from **** come to get Judy Canova and make her an example lest more John Q. Citizens interfere.

 

How to do it though? The head of the spy ring Jerome Cowan comes up with a brilliant idea. Cowan also doubles as a nightclub owner and he gets gullible agents Joe E. Brown and Eddie Foy, Jr., to stop trying to sell their client Anne Jeffreys and go to the Ozarks and fetch Judy as a club attraction, the better for the Nazis to get access.

 

Of course Joe and Judy in their guileless ways manage to foil the villains of course. You expected something else?

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*HER HUSBAND'S AFFAIRS* (1947)...Columbia...Lucille Ball, Franchot Tone, Edward Everett Horton

 

From Neil Doyle at the IMDB:

 

There's a lot of the Lucy Ricardo personality in the wife Lucille Ball plays in HER HUSBAND'S AFFAIRS-- only here the husband who gets exasperated with her brainstorms is Franchot Tone. It starts out with an amusing idea about a scientist whose embalming lotion can be used to remove beards without shaving. It does so very efficiently until several hours have passed--and then it grows abundant amounts of hair.

 

Tone is an advertising man who thinks he's going to have some successful products to launch with the help of the mad scientist, except that most of the plans go haywire thanks to the manipulations of his scatterbrained wife.

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*RUTHLESS* (1948)...Eagle-Lion...Zachary Scott, Louis Hayward, Diana Lynn

 

From SanDiego at the IMDB:

 

Excellent drama about a poor boy who is adopted by a rich family after saving their daughter from drowning. Given all the benefits of wealth and society, he uses the people who care about him and give him his breaks, especially the women he meets. Zachary Scott is chilling in his mentally perverse portrayal of a tycoon that is more in league with Norman Bates than William Randolph Hearst. Diana Lynn (the Sandra Bullock of her day) is wonderful as the woman he had saved as a girl and whose heart he would break in his rise to success. There is a twist in the plot mid-way...the entire cast is compelling and the soundtrack is appropriately eerie.

 

Edited by: TopBilled on Aug 7, 2012 12:33 PM

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*Ruthless* definitely sounds like one I'd like to see. But the reviewer made a bit of a mistake. It's William Randolph Hearst.

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Eagle-Lion was, if you will, a high-end poverty row studio (as an extension of Arthur Rank's business in the U.S.). Because it had more money than other poverty row studios, in addition to its on-going slate of B-films, it managed to turn out some high quality A-pictures. RUTHLESS is one of those prestige productions.

 

For anyone who gets Netflix streaming service, the title is available there and worth checking out. Excellent print condition and previously cut footage restored; you won't be disappointed. Sydney Greenstreet steals the show, though the rest of the cast are in top-form, too.

 

As for the error in the IMDB review I referenced, usually I go in and clean up the more obvious spelling, grammatical or factual errors. I apparently missed one and will go back and correct the post. Thanks.

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>By the way, RUTHLESS is planned for a near future DVD release courtesy of Olive Films.

 

Thanks for letting us know. It is worth owning a copy.

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*TENNESSEE'S PARTNER* (1955)...RKO...John Payne, Ronald Reagan, Rhonda Fleming

 

From bkoganbing at the IMDB:

 

TENNESSEE'S PARTNER is very loosely based on a Bret Harte story. The story takes place in a gold mining town in California where gambler John Payne finds it easier to make money at the poker table than digging for gold. Payne's who's name is Tennessee is probably no better than he ought to be, but the place is full of rough characters.

 

One of them is Anthony Caruso, another gambler whose got a bad case of jealousy. He eggs on another poker loser to bushwhack Payne, but a stranger riding into town played by Ronald Reagan saves Payne. He's simply known as Cowpoke. And he becomes Tennessee's partner.

 

Payne has another partner in town, Rhonda Fleming whose the local madam. They're partners in a combination bordello/gambling establishment. Payne takes the customer's money downstairs at the poker table and Fleming's girls do the same upstairs.

 

This marked the fourth film during the 1950s that Ronald Reagan and Rhonda Fleming appeared in together.

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Flesh and Fantasy - Robert Cummings, Charles Boyer, Barbara Stanwyck, Edward G. Robinson

 

Mississippi Gambler - Universal, starring Tyrone Power

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I've already featured MISSISSIPPI GAMBLER. FLESH AND FANTASY will be covered in October, so check back for that. Thanks.

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