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I Just Watched...

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14 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

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Did these guys use spearheads to get such close shaves?

I've seen most of my favorite "bad" movies via MST3K, a few are surprisingly fun.

5 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

Zero budget horror tale about the Feds crop-dusting a backwoods marijuana field with a toxic chemical which causes the pot farmers to go homicidal and crave human flesh.

Sounds like whomever thought that up was high. Haha "zero budget".

 

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15 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

Teenage Cave Man (1958)  -  3/10 

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"It is like writing history with lightning!" - Woodrow Wilson

The 28th President of the United States said the above about a movie, but probably not this one. Star Robert Vaughn later referred to this as the greatest motion picture ever made. Or maybe the worst motion picture ever made. It was definitely one of the two. Whichever it was, I am forbidden by the Law from telling you any more about it. Just know that the ending will change your life...forever!

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I actually liked this Roger Corman movie! And the ending was the best part!

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Voice in the Mirror (1958)  -  7/10

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Drama starring Richard Egan as a seemingly hopeless alcoholic who reaches rock bottom and struggles for sobriety with the help of his quietly-suffering wife Julie London. Also featuring Walter Matthau, Arthur O'Connell, Troy Donahue, Mae Clarke, Harry Bartell, Peggy Converse, Ann Doran, Max Showalter, Doris Singleton, and Harry Dean Stanton. Egan has one of his strongest acting roles as a man unable to cope with his grief and seeks oblivion in a bottle. O'Connell is also good as another self-destructive drunk. 

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When Hell Broke Loose (1958)  -  5/10

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Low-grade WWII picture starring Charles Bronson as a bookie and petty crook who is forced to enlist rather than be prosecuted. His selfish ways are tested in combat, as are his loyalties when he learns from his German paramour (Violet Rensing) about a plot by her brother (Richard Jaeckel), a Nazi "werewolf" (German troops undercover as American G.I.s), to assassinate Eisenhower. Also featuring Robert Easton, Eddie Foy III, Arvid Nelson, Anne Wakefield, Joley Marino, Dennis McCarthy, and Robert Stevenson. There's not much to recommend about this one, as it's alternately overly-routine and/or shoddily made. The most interesting thing about it may be that Bronson receives an "introducing" credit, despite this being his 30th film.

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Last night I watched the Private Screenings interview that Robert Osborne did with Stanley Donen from 2006.  Robert did his typical masterful job at going through the highlights of Mr. Donen's career.  Since I have not seen all of the earlier interviews that Robert did, I'm thankful to get the chance to see another one.  What an impressive life and résumé in film Mr. Donen had!

I also watched the introductions that Dave Karger did throughout the evening (they are on WatchTCM now) and I appreciated his comments as well.  Very nice tribute presented by TCM, thank you.

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Richard Egan and Troy Donahue... shades of A Summer Place. :D

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Vicky Cristina Barcelona (2008) Javier Bardem, Scarlett Johansson, Penelope Cruz.

Not all that interesting in itself, but interesting in how Woody moved, almost wholesale,

the good looking, well off, intellectual artsy type characters from NYC to Barcelona. Vicky

and Cristina are two such who are spending the summer in Barcelona. They meet

painter Bardem and he uses some pickup lines that are as subtle as a sledgehammer.

Cristina is willing, but Vicky is engaged and finds Bardem's crude behavior somewhat off

putting. IOW, she'll be sucking Bardem's paintbrush the day after tomorrow. Cristina

moves in with Bardem and things are going well until Bardem's semi-crazy ex-wife,

played by Cruz, enters the picture. At first there is some conflict, but eventually they

start a threesome. The only person who isn't getting any action is Bardem's poet

father, but with a few extra minutes of screen time he likely could have got some tail

too. Sorry pops. Vicky's post-yuppie fiance arrives and they get married, though she

feels guilty about screwing Bardem. She considers getting out of the marriage, but

they've got to go back home and buy a new house, so why not stay with Mr. Sucker?

Well it's the end of summer and the girls have to return to the USA. Bardem's wife

comes in with a pistola and starts firing but doesn't hit anybody. Yeah, it's definitely

time to get out of Barcelona. The icing on the cake of this movie is an almost beyond

pretentious narration, which has to be heard to be believed and even then it's hard to

believe. The Barcelona locales are nice to see. Sort of like a travelogue with some

annoying people getting in the way. This is the kind of picture that gives meaning to

the phrase verging on self-parody. 

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I thought that was one of Woody's better films from the 00's, behind only Match Point and Cassandra's Dream.

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The Wind Cannot Read (1958)  - 6/10

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British WWII romance with soldier Dirk Bogarde, stationed in India, starting a tentative relationship with Japanese-language instructor Yoko Tani. Also featuring Ronald Lewis, John Fraser, Anthony Bushell, Marne Maitland, Michael Medwin, Richard Leech, Tony Wager, and Donald Pleasence. Similar to other interracial Asian-themed romances of the time, such as Love Is a Many-Splendored ThingSayonara, and The Quiet American, this one differs due to the Indian setting (the Taj Mahal is visited) and the handful of war scenes. Bogarde is reliably presentable in this sort of thing, while Yoko Tani, a French-raised singer with a major career on the international nightclub circuit at the time, is hot-or-miss from scene to scene. This project had originally been developed by David Lean and Alexander Korda, but the latter died before production could begin, and Lean moved on to Bridge on the River Kwai

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1 hour ago, LawrenceA said:

I thought that was one of Woody's better films from the 00's, behind only Match Point and Cassandra's Dream.

To me it was just more of the same in a different setting. And that narration. Egad. Now, if I was

totally unfamiliar with Woody Allen films I probably would have liked it. Though I haven't seen many

of his newer movies, I think the one film a year schedule is not helping any. 

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2 hours ago, cmovieviewer said:

Last night I watched the Private Screenings interview that Robert Osborne did with Stanley Donen from 2006.  Robert did his typical masterful job at going through the highlights of Mr. Donen's career.  Since I have not seen all of the earlier interviews that Robert did, I'm thankful to get the chance to see another one.  What an impressive life and résumé in film Mr. Donen had!

I also watched the introductions that Dave Karger did throughout the evening (they are on WatchTCM now) and I appreciated his comments as well.  Very nice tribute presented by TCM, thank you.

I TOTALLY forgot to record it and remembered a half hour after it ended. FURIOUS. Did anyone record it who would be willing to make a copy (I'd pay for shipping and the cost of the tape/dvd). I'd seen it when it first aired, but I've forgotten a lot of what was said. :(

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With Woody Allen, from year to year, you never know what kind of movie you are going to get.

Look at "To Rome,With Love", it is almost totally disposable.

And, yet, it is full of an quirky charm that is irresistible.

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Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018)  -  8/10

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Visually inventive (literally - the technique was trademarked) animated film introducing Miles Morales, a young mixed race kid who gets bitten by a radioactive spider and is imbued with superpowers. This occurs shortly before a science experiment causes a rift in the dimensional walls separating the multi-verse, leading to multiple versions of Spider-man appearing. They have to work together to get back home, while also teaching Miles what it takes to be Spider-man. This deservedly won the Oscar for Best Animated Feature. I thought it was a lot of fun.

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1 hour ago, Hibi said:

I TOTALLY forgot to record it and remembered a half hour after it ended. FURIOUS. Did anyone record it who would be willing to make a copy (I'd pay for shipping and the cost of the tape/dvd). I'd seen it when it first aired, but I've forgotten a lot of what was said. :(

Hibi,

I tried sending you a message, but for some reason the message board wouldn't let me.  If you could please try sending me a message I will then see if I can send you a reply.

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Night Watch (1973)

British made mystery about a woman (Elizabeth Taylor) who says she saw a dead body in the window of the dilapidated old house behind her's during a thunderstorm. Her husband and best friend (Billie Whitelaw) see nothing but stand by her. The police, after a search, are doubtful of her claim. Is it her imagination, especially when she says she sees a second body, or is there a plot to drive her crazy?

Tired, ultra familiar thriller, possibly enhanced for some viewers by the star power of Taylor. There's some suspense just prior to a twist ending which some may like but this is clearly a minor effort.

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2.5 out of 4

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6 hours ago, cmovieviewer said:

Last night I watched the Private Screenings interview that Robert Osborne did with Stanley Donen from 2006.  Robert did his typical masterful job at going through the highlights of Mr. Donen's career.  Since I have not seen all of the earlier interviews that Robert did, I'm thankful to get the chance to see another one.  What an impressive life and résumé in film Mr. Donen had!

I also watched the introductions that Dave Karger did throughout the evening (they are on WatchTCM now) and I appreciated his comments as well.  Very nice tribute presented by TCM, thank you.

Agree 100%. Many interesting nuggets from Donen, who pointed out how well Audrey Hepburn sang in Funny Face (and could presumably have sung in My Fair Lady) and how Brigadoon was the A-List musical when it was being made at MGM, whereas Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, made at the same time, was considered the B Team, until both movies were released. Donen also emphasized how so many wonderful moments, like Fred Astaire dancing on the ceiling, happened because of lots of rehearsal. Donen had nothing but praise for Astaire, Audrey Hepburn, and Gene Kelly, though he admitted that co-directing (with Kelly) was inherently difficult. Musicals were going out of fashion by the mid-50s, and MGM was ready to release him before Seven Brides for Seven Brothers was a hit. Donen then turned down MGM's offer so that he could go out on his own. When he called Jack Warner about making Indiscreet, when Warner heard that it was with Cary Grant and Ingrid Bergman directed by Donen, he immediately said yes. Donen pointed out how very different things became when the studios were no longer owned by the people who ran them.

 

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I came home exhausted from work and an evening meeting and Singin' in the Rain was on.  Although I've seen this movie many times, I so needed those 2 hours of pure joy.  I still had chores to do around the house, but the thing about that movie is that there's never a dull moment, so many wonderful numbers, but even the comedy in between is terrific.  I always crack up when Millard Mitchell pulls up Leena Lamont's sound wire.

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Computercide (1981)  -  3/10

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Terrible TV movie set in the future year of 1996. Joe Cortese stars as the last private detective, as computer-aided crime prevention has resulted in a peaceful society. Cortese is hired by Susan George to look for her missing father, and ultra-wealthy business magnate who has just bankrolled a highly-exclusive seaside community. Cortese and George travel there undercover as a couple, but they run into resistance from her father's second-in-command (Donald Pleasence). Also featuring Tom Clancy (not that one!!!), Liam Sullivan, and David Huddleston. This was filmed back in '77 as the pilot for a TV series to be called Final Eye, but it was so awful that they shelved, only to re-title it, release it to Australian cinemas in '81, and air it on TV in the US in '82. It's slow, silly, and a waste. The music used sounds like it was lifted from The Odd Couple TV show. 

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Northstar (1986)  -  4/10

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TV movie starring Greg Evigan as an astronaut who gets zapped by radiation from a solar flare during a spacewalk. Once back on Earth, he discovers that he has various superhuman abilities, such as super-intelligence, hyper strength, and superior sensory perception, all from looking at the sun. The drawback is that using any of these powers later renders him weak, with memory loss and possible brain damage, including the possibly of cerebral explosion if he pushes things too far. Also featuring Deborah Wakeham as his physician and potential love interest, Mitchell Ryan as the commanding officer, Mason Adams as an avuncular scientist, Sonny Landham, Steven Williams, Robin Curtis, and Ken Foree. Yes, this is another failed pilot for a potential series, and it's easy to see why. I don't think having a superhero who gets his powers from staring directly at the sun would go over too well with parents whose kids may wish to emulate his actions. And most viewers would quickly tire of the silly side effects of our hero using his abilities, some of which include having sections of his arms and forehead swelling up like they're about to burst. Plus, Greg Evigan was a terrible actor, at least in this. 

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6 hours ago, TomJH said:

Her husband and best friend (Billie Whitelaw)

[...]

There's some suspense just prior to a twist ending which some may like

I assume that Billie Whitelaw being Liz Taylor's husband is the twist?  ;)

 

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8 hours ago, kingrat said:

Donen pointed out how very different things became when the studios were no longer owned by the people who ran them.

....the problem with our present culture, really. Once a struggling business becomes successful and they sell out to big corporations innovation, artistry & pride go out the window for the "profits". And now we're facing mega corporations that own several businesses/franchises.

Last night I watched a TCM recording of BEYOND A REASONABLE DOUBT from 1956. BEYOND...DOUBT was one of the first Fritz Lang film I ever saw because of fave Dana Andrews, but recall being unimpressed with it. So last night, I gave it another try but with the same results.

The movie starts out great, with Andrews as a reporter (another obsolete job) dating the daughter of a publisher. The publisher is played by Sidney Blackmer and the daughter is annoyingly played by struggling-with-her-accent Joan Fontaine.  The publisher suggests they plan a hoax to show an innocent person can go through the judicial system, wrongly tried & convicted as a anti-capitol punishment statement.

The story moves along really well at this point. An unsolved murder is chosen and the two of them plant clues to lead police to "catch" Andrews. Once on trial, he is convicted to death row on the fake circumstantial evidence. Andrews panics when the publisher is accidentally killed in a car accident, since the publisher is the ONLY ONE who can reveal the hoax/truth. There is a scramble to find any evidence of paperwork & photos to corroborate.

And at this point the film loses the viewer's interest with all the silly twists and turns that make NO SENSE. I won't spoil anything for those who haven't seen it, but my underline in an earlier paragraph points out a huge plot hole. Andrews great acting, the interesting noir photography nor the great director can't save this one.

20 years lapse did not help this disappointing piece from Fritz Lang's otherwise typically stellar filmography.

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5 hours ago, Fedya said:

I assume that Billie Whitelaw being Liz Taylor's husband is the twist?  ;)

 

PLEEEEEZE! No spoilers! ;)

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11 hours ago, kingrat said:

Many interesting nuggets from Donen,

He did not mention the 1967 Peter Cook/Dudley Moore comedy "Bedazzled" which I liked very much.

He did say there were some of his films he did not like, I wonder if this was one of them.

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13 hours ago, cmovieviewer said:

Hibi,

I tried sending you a message, but for some reason the message board wouldn't let me.  If you could please try sending me a message I will then see if I can send you a reply.

OK Thanks!

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11 hours ago, kingrat said:

Agree 100%. Many interesting nuggets from Donen, who pointed out how well Audrey Hepburn sang in Funny Face (and could presumably have sung in My Fair Lady)

 

Love AUDREY to pieces, and she does do a pretty fair rendition of HOW LONG HAS THIS BEEN GOING ON? in FUNNY FACE (and a charming MOON RIVER in BREAKFAST AT TIFFANY'S) , but, at the same time, I have seen the deleted scene where she sings SHOW ME to Freddie in MY FAIR LADY and, um...well...uh....did I mention that I love Audrey to pieces?

(Range is everything is what I guess I'm trying to say....)

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