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I Just Watched...

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9 hours ago, LornaHansonForbes said:

I'm surprised no one has taken me to task yet for my dismissal of DONT LOOK NOW (1973)- in the meantime, I have taken immense solace from reading one star reviews of the Film on IMDb. 

It's been along time since I've had such a visceral reaction to a film.

seriously, as much as I respect the work of artists, even works I don't particularly care for, I would have a very hard time not pouring a Tahitian Treat all over the negative of this thing were I left in a room alone with it.

I don't think I can say anything else about it without using really foul language.

 

I agree, the film sucked. And I wasn’t interested in seeing Donald Sutherland naked either.

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1 minute ago, scsu1975 said:

I agree, the film sucked. And I wasn’t interested in seeing Donald Sutherland naked either.

I KNOW RIGHT?!?!?!?!

THAT was the real HORROR!!

ps- thanks x 1,000 for that

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8 hours ago, cigarjoe said:

8 Million Ways To Die (1986) L.A. Smog Noir

Matthew 'Matt' Scudder: Yeah, there are 8 million stories in the naked city. Remember that old TV show?

Dave Addison:  There are 8 million stories in the naked city...Right now, let's be two of them.  B)

- Bruce Willis to Cybil Shepherd, "Moonlighting"

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X, Y, and Z, aka. Zee & Co. (1972)

Zee Blakeley (Elizabeth Taylor) and her husband Robert (Michael Caine) are playing table tennis over the opening credits and making exaggerated facial expressions of joy, which should be a warning right off the bat that the movie is a disaster waiting to happen.  It turns out that the Blakeley's marriage ought to be ending in divorce, so Robert decides to have an affair with a widow he met at a party, Stella (Susannah York).

Zee finds out, and doesn't like it, so she decides to be catty in a whole bunch of ways, including attempting suicide and really coming between Robert and Stella.  All the while the characters partake in fabulously tacky 70s style and (for the women) hairdos while delivering tawdry one-liners.  Margaret Leighton, however, tops Taylor and York in the bad hair department:

zee-and-co-1972-margaret-leighton-michae

5/10 for being so audaciously bad.

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Lady from Louisiana (1941) - Costume romance/crime drama from Republic Pictures and director Bernard Vorhaus. It's the 1890s, and Northern lawyer John Reynolds (John Wayne) is traveling south to New Orleans via riverboat to meet with his elderly aunt Blanche (Helen Westley). On the boat, John meets Julie Mirbeau (Ona Munson), and the two fall in love. When they reach New Orleans, John learns that his aunt wants him to help head up legal efforts to stop the corrupt State Lottery, which just so happens to be run by Julie's father General Anatole (Henry Stephenson). However, the real force behind the corruption is the General's right-hand man Black-ie (Ray Middleton). Also featuring Jack Pennick, Jacqueline Dalya, and Dorothy Dandridge.

Republic attempts to make an MGM-caliber costumer with less than thrilling results. The sets and costumes are well done, but the story is dull, barely coherent, and predicated on just a few too many coincidences and failures of communication. There's some disaster-movie action near the end with the failure of levees and flooding. I don't know if Wayne enjoyed making a movie where he wasn't on a horse for a change, but he seems ill-suited. Some sources label this movie a Western, but it in no way is, unless one thinks any movie set in the 19th century is a Western.  (5/10)

Source: YouTube.

1327-lady-from-louisiana-0-230-0-345-cro

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Oh Lorna, I don't know if I'd ever again be able to look at either of my parents in the eye(s) if they watched The Wicker Man on my (inadvertent) recommendation. Did you not mention that scene with Britt Ekland and The Wall or is your mom just a lot more...European than mine?

I was genuinely horrified by the movie - especially the giddy campfire sing-along - but am now oddly comforted by thinking of it as a black comedy instead. Thank you!

 

 

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The Smallest Show on Earth (Big Time Operators) (1957) Nice film about a couple inhereting a wrecked Movie Theater. With Virginia McKenna, Bill Travers, Margaret Rutherford, Peter Sellers, and Bernard Miles. Felt like an Ealing Comedy. 7/10

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Fedya, what's maybe the most interesting thing about the trainwreck known as X, Y, and Zee is that Susannah York seems to taking the whole thing seriously, carefully creating a character, etc., whereas Michael Caine and Elizabeth Taylor are just strolling through (Caine) or hamming through (Taylor) to get the paycheck. It makes York seem like the one who hasn't gotten the joke.

The same phenomenon can be found in Ocean's Twelve where Catherine Zeta-Jones, who wasn't in Ocean's Eleven, is hard at work building a character while everyone else just shows up for the check.

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The Man With Nine Lives (1940) This is an early 'mad scientist' slant on cryogenics.  Roger Pryor is a doctor who has success 'curing' patients by lowering their body temperatures.  He is urged to publish his results, but wants to know more about the work of a doctor who pioneered the science, then vanished ten years before.  Pryor and his nurse/girlfriend Jo Ann Sayers set out to find the last known address of the doctor, Boris Karloff (who else?) to see if he left any notes behind.  Not only do they find his notes, they find him..frozen in a room 91 steps (they counted) below his laboratory.  They thaw him out, and he tells what happened a decade before..how 3 officials tried to stop him from using the technique on a wealthy citizen, and they all got trapped in the 'deep freeze'.  Oddly, none of them seem particularly surprised or upset (?) about their years on ice, but things get ugly fast; one man becomes very greedy concerning profits from the promising technique, and Karloff wants to continue experimenting on everyone else.  It's a fun watch, but you can guess early on that Karloff is going to go completely off the deep end (only naive' Pryor and Sayers are very slow to catch on). source: Classic Reel                          Related image

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On 4/13/2018 at 7:20 PM, LornaHansonForbes said:

also also, to makes you feel any better I had to edit one of my posts because for some reason I thought the movie was called THE WOMAN ON PIER 13!

 

Well, I guess there was a pier on the beach.........

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6 hours ago, cigarjoe said:

The Smallest Show on Earth (Big Time Operators) (1957) Nice film about a couple inhereting a wrecked Movie Theater. With Virginia McKenna, Bill Travers, Margaret Rutherford, Peter Sellers, and Bernard Miles. Felt like an Ealing Comedy. 7/10

I caught part of it. Looked like a cute movie!

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On 4/15/2018 at 12:51 PM, TomJH said:

Behind the Makeup (1930)

Early Paramount talkie about Hap Brown, a vaudeville clown with a bicycle act (Hal Skelly), who's happy to get by, but combines forces with Gardoni, a down-and-out European clown (William Powell). The complex Gardoni has aspirations towards being an "artiste" while the simple minded, easy going Hap insists ya gotta give 'em hokum in the small town vaudeville circuit. 

BehindTheMakeup2-150x150.png

Gardoni will eventually reluctantly agree to the hokum, however, and become a big hit, with Hap his second banana. In addition to stealing the headlines Gardoni will also steal Hap's girl (waitress Fay Wray) whom he will marry without so much as a "Sorry about that" to poor Hap. Hap is hurt for about ten seconds but, being an easy going slob, quickly forgives both Gardoni and his girl. But Gardoni will soon become involved with a sleek, high society matron (Kay Francis) and mounting gambling debts.

This is a middling drama, most interesting to modern viewers due to William Powell's supporting portrayal. He's curly haired and adopts a fake Italian accent but makes his high strung, mercurial character interesting. In spite of taking advantage of Hap, the film's protagonist, at times, he's not really a bad guy (though Powell had played his share of villains during the silents). In the final analysis, while he hurts others around him it's not by design but as a side product of his own self absorbed behaviour. Powell's Gardoni is, in fact, very much his own worst enemy.

The little remembered Hal Skelly plays the good natured, sad clown in this film, ready to lend a helping hand to others, if he can (in contrast to Gardoni). He is, to be honest, a bit of a sap, even if he is a nice guy. Skelly was a show biz trouper, having worked in the circus and minstrel shows before having a hit on Broadway (with Barbara Stanwyck) called Burlesque. Skelly would give a noteworthy performance when that hit was translated to film in 1929's The Dance of Life, an interesting film that can be found on You Tube today. It was the highlight of Skelly's brief film career.

But just as Gardoni steals Hap's girl from him in Behind the Makeup, so, too, Willliam Powell steals the film from Hal Skelly. Hap's character is, in the final analysis, not a particularly interesting one, while Gardoni perhaps had the makings of being the central character (if not a particularly admirable one) of a better film.

Some film buffs will, of course, be interested in seeing Powell share scenes with the sophisticated Kay Francis, foreshadowing their near future screen collaborations in a couple of other films, most noticeably One Way Passage at Warner Brothers.

Sometimes art can eerily anticipate real life. Just as Gardoni steals the limelight from Hap in Behind the Makeup, William Powell would soon leave Paramount for Warner Brothers, and from there travel to MGM where he would find film immortality in film comedy and the arms of Myrna Loy. Meanwhile Hal Skelly would make a small handful of films before being killed, while searching for a runaway dog, when the vehicle he was in was struck by a train. Skelly died in 1934, the same year that Powell made The Thin Man.

BehindTheMakeup23-650x508.png

2.5 out of 4

 

I loved Francis' pre-code short doo. Wish she would have kept it long term........

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On 4/13/2018 at 9:39 AM, LornaHansonForbes said:

for any of you bummed out that you haven't seen SECRET BEYOND THE DOOR- ya'll ain't missing a damn thang.

WOOF!

Joan Bennett is a class act all the way, and Man did she deserve better than this gut-bucket REBECCA ripoff. I would never in a million years have guessed it was directed by anyone with even a modicum of talent it's so poorly sewn together and languidly filmed- right down to the framing and uninteresting lighting which do nothing to add to the mood (if there were one)

slight non sequitor, but how was Natalie Schaeffer perpetually 54 years old? anyone?

i don't care for Anne Revere for the most part, but this was oddly one of the few times where she seemed to be playing a flesh-and-blood human being, even wearing attractive hairstyles and suits as opposed to her usual washerwoman styles. 

i love Barbra O'Neil, she also deserved better than this.

can anyone explain to me the deal with MICHAEL REDGRAVE? I've seen him in this, MOURNING BECOMES ELECTRA, THE LADY VANISHES and DEAD OF NIGHT and he is DISHWATER DULL in each, and that's no small task considering THE LADY VANISHES is a great picture. was he just pure electricity on stage and it didn't translate to film or something? 

from the imdb trivia section for the film:

The grove of trees that Joan Bennett runs through when she flees the house is the same grove that the Wolf Man ran through in the 1941 film, also made by Universal. In particular, the tree she leans against is the same one that the Wolf Man is beaten under.
 
Fritz Lang's attempt to do his version of Rebecca (1940) was a project fraught with disaster. It ran over budget and over schedule, while Lang was at constant loggerheads with his leading lady, Joan Bennett. The first preview of the film attracted comments like "beyond human endurance" and "it stinks". Bennett herself referred to the film as "an unqualified disaster".

I wonder how long the original cut was? I'm assuming Universal issued the cuts after the disastrous preview ("beyond human endurance"). Wonder if the longer film would have been less murky or just longer........

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Peer Gynt (1941) - Very low budget silent adaptation of the Henrik Ibsen play, from screenwriter and director David Bradley. Charlton Heston stars as the title character, a self-centered, aimless lout who upsets everyone in his Norwegian village, so he sets out to make a name for himself, with mixed results. Also featuring Betty Hanisee, Lucielle Powell, Charles Paetow, Morris Wilson, and Betty Barton.

This was an independently made effort, with a budget so minuscule that sound was not an option, so instead the movie is silent with intertitles, and only Edvard Grieg's music on the soundtrack. Peer Gynt is a title that I've heard for many years, but this is the first time that I've ever seen a production of it, so I had no idea what the story was about or really anything about it. After sitting through this, I'm still not quite sure what the point of it is, and I can't say that I'm impressed at all with what I could gather of the source material. Director Bradley makes use of lots of stock footage to try and build up his production, but the bare bones quality shows through all too often. The cast of local amateurs is exactly what you'd think they'd be, and while the 17-year-old Heston, making his movie debut, is undoubtedly the draw of the movie (I'm fairly certain it would have disappeared completely by now if not for his presence), he's not very good.    (4/10)

Source: YouTube.

HestonPeerGyntcrop.jpg 

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17 minutes ago, LawrenceA said:

Peer Gynt (1941)

HestonPeerGyntcrop.jpg 

Thanks for notification of this odd ball one I hadn't heard of, Lawrence. I see that Charlton was still finding an excuse to strip off his shirt for the camera even back then.

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56 minutes ago, TomJH said:

Thanks for notification of this odd ball one I hadn't heard of, Lawrence. I see that Charlton was still finding an excuse to strip off his shirt for the camera even back then.

THAT'S HIM????

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Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter (2014)

I rarely look at reviews before making my own comments & frequently avoid them when making a choice of what to view - for the latter, this was no exception & was picked simply because it was the first interesting title to appear on the list. For the former, more in a bit...

Based on an urban legend, woven from the story of an actual real person, the story starts with a disaffected, unmarried & nearing her 30's Tokyo office lady unearthing a battered old VHS tape & bringing it home to watch. At that point, you're probably thinking - Ah ha, a Ringu rip-off - but you'd be wrong - what follows is a strange, beautifully shot story, linked to an earlier movie that you've probably seen, that turned out to be a quite fulfilling watch, if not necessarily the most feel-good film you'll ever see. 

The reviews on Kanopy had a fair amount of hate for this film, which TBH, I can sort of understand, depending on what you think you're going to get. Looking up info on the movie after viewing it, I found one comment which sums it up perfectly,  IMO...

Eric Kohn of Indiewire praised the film and said that "Striking a complex tone of tragedy and uplift at the same time, Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter both celebrates the escapist power of personal fantasies and bears witness to their dangerous extremes. It's the rare case of a story that's inspirational and devastating at once.

kumiko-the-treasure-hunter-review.png

Viewed on Kanopy streaming service.

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20 minutes ago, Hibi said:

THAT'S HIM????

I know, right?

 

EDIT: I SEE HE WAS 17! SORRY! WITHDRAWN!!!!!

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The Shanghai Gesture (1941) - Bizarre, exotic drama from United Artists and director Josef von Sternberg. In the polyethnic city of Shanghai, various unusual characters cross paths in the gambling den of Mother Gin Sling (Ona Munson). These include rich girl Poppy (Gene Tierney), womanizer Dr. Omar (Victor Mature), stranded chorus girl Dixie (Phyllis Brooks), and many others. Things get complicated when English businessman Sir Guy Charteris (Walter Huston) buys the block containing Gin Sling's place and he orders the place shut down. Also featuring Albert Bassermann, Eric Blore, Ivan Lebedeff, Mike Mazurki, Michael Dalmatoff, and Maria Ouspenskaya as the Amah.

This fairly lurid stuff, obviously neutered a bit by the Production Code, but still managing to be salacious enough to upset some. This ended up being the final completed American film for director von Sternberg. Munson as dragon lady Gin Sling is a riot, with her ridiculous hair-style certainly memorable. Gene Tierney looks terrific, while Victor Mature looks appropriately sleazy. I'm not sure how good this really was, but it was outrageous enough to entertain me quite a bit. It earned Oscar nominations for Best Art Direction, and Best Score (Richard Hageman). One unusual bit about the movie is this entry at the end of the films opening credits: "And a large cast of "HOLLYWOOD EXTRAS" who without expecting credit or mention stand ready day and night to do their best - - and who at their best are more than good enough to deserve mention."  (7/10)

Source: YouTube.

image?id=854615131555%26t=50%26plc=WEB%2

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IT HAPPENED ONE NIGHT (1934): STARRING CLARK GABLE & CLAUDETTE COLBERT. 

This is the 2nd time I've seen this one. Forgot Frank Capra directed it. I'm visiting my paternal grandparents and we watched it together last night. I am not obsessed with either Gable or Colbert, but I do like them in the films they've done that I've seen (only seen 2 of Colbert's, and possibly 5 of Gable's). I haven't watched an older movie (which I classify as being released between 30s-60s, because to me, the 70s wasn't that long ago even though I wasn't alive) in a while, so it was very refreshing, to say the least. 

Related image

We will probably watch The Music Man (1962) tonight, as it is one of my favorite movies of all time, so that's exciting. 

 

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A QUIET PLACE (2018): starring John Krasinski & Emily Blunt (married in real life). 

I went and saw this last Thursday, and I enjoyed it. I'm a huge wimp when it comes to "scary movies," but this one was very tolerable (I saw "It" and was afraid to turn the lights off for about a week). 

Without giving too much away: The film is set in the year 2020 after some kind of an invasion/apocalypse (whatever you want to call it), the audience follows one family as they try to survive. I can't type much more since I don't want to spoil the movie since it is still very new... 

Image result for a quiet place

Score: 4/5. 

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WELCOME TO ME (2014): starring Kristen Wiig. *Source: Netflix 

Wiig stars as Alice Klieg, a woman with borderline personality disorder, who ends up winning millions in the lottery and decides to start her own talk show. Alice ends up quitting taking her prescribed medication, which leads to dissension among her family, friends, and tv show employees. 

I've really only ever seen Wiig in comedic roles ever since her stint on SNL (one of my favorite cast members from the 2000s), but was pleasantly surprised by her dramatic prowess in this.

Image result for welcome to me 2014

Score: 3/5. 

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MUST LOVE DOGS (2005): starring Diane Lane, John Cusack, Christopher Plummer, Dermot Mulroney, & Elizabeth Perkins (fun fact: when I was very young, I used to confuse Perkins with Geena Davis). 

The last (and only other) movie I saw Diane Lane in was Six Pack (1982), so there's that for reference. 

Not much to say about this one; it's a rom-com. It didn't put me to sleep. 

*Source: Netflix 

 

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So did James Cagney.

ps3.jpg

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