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I Just Watched...

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58 minutes ago, Vautrin said:

Only 70 minutes, a mere hour and ten. You can do it. Lugosi did get screwed. Little screen time and

not much to do even with that. In horror films most of the time the accent works, but in this one

it sounds funny. You expect his gangster pals to think to themselves Where the hell did this guy

come from? Stanley Ridges who played the professor/gangster had a much bigger role than Bela,

but who ever heard of him? I think he did a fairly restrained job with what could have been a really

over the top role. The first fifteen minutes or so play like some kind of small town eccentrics comedy.

Maybe they should have stuck with that. Or maybe not. James Craig, who went on to bigger things,

also shows up in the small part of a reporter who receives Karloff's note book from Boris himself.

Remember kids, don't try this brain transplant stuff at home.

Bela was a great classical actor doing Shakespeare in Budapest before he ever came to America.

When he played Dracula on Broadway he was the matinee Idol of New York City.

Due to personal problems, which I believe included drug addiction, Bela fell into disarray in the forties and played many roles that were beneath his ability.

"Black Friday" was a lot better than most of the crap that he had to do to make a living.

About the worst thing I ever saw was something called "Scared To Death". And I never got to see the end of it because I always fell asleep because it was so bad.

Watching him in that Abbott and Costello movie on Svengoolie last Saturday made me remember what he had to go through in that film. Abbott and Costello were always in it for laughs and Bela took everything seriously. They had to tone it down some because they upset him with their lack of seriousness although I suppose they were professional because they got their bits right and they made a lot of money. But I always thought that they were boring and excessive.

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2 hours ago, Princess of Tap said:

About the worst thing I ever saw was something called "Scared To Death". 

I like some of Bela's 1940s and 50s movies, particularly Devil Bat. Return of the Vampire, and some of the films in which he had smaller roles, like Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man, Night Monster and You'll Find Out (as Prince Saliano). I even have a soft spot for this film:

 

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6 hours ago, Princess of Tap said:

If you're not aware of classic rock and roll,

you might check Little Richard out for starters.

Some might say ELVIS, but Richard's as good a starting point as any.  ;)

 

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9 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

Badly written and even more poorly acted, this has to be one of Castle's worst films, and that's saying something.

I enjoyed it, largely because I went into it not expecting to take it seriously.

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10 hours ago, LawrenceA said:
10 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

 

Rim of the World (2019)  -  3/10

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The latest Processed Movie Product from Netflix. (snipped) you're in Bad Film-School Screenwriter territory. It's like every bad modern movie cliche baked into one ugly loaf.

HILARIOUS!

Now even art (Movies/music/books) has become homogenized along with our food. Nice comparison.

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16 hours ago, Vautrin said:

Lugosi gets second billing,

but he has little to do as a gangster pal of Cannon's, except to provide a few unintentionally

humorous moments with his thick accent

Lugosi was originally supposed play the part of the doctor and Karloff was going to play the professor later played by Stanley Ridges. Karloff did not want to tackle the dual role so he was given the the doctor role, Lugosi was not suitable for the professor part so he was stuck with this minor role of a gangster. The publicity department thought up a scheme where Lugosi would be hypnotized for his death scene, supposedly making him feel like he is really suffocating. He screams and cries a bit in the scene but I'm pretty sure it was all a set up.

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Harper (1966) 8/10

 

Paul Newman plays the title role of a private eye searching for a rich woman's (Lauren Bacall) husband.

The story is not the big draw in this film, it is the incredible supporting cast. Bacall makes the most her small role as the wife who is not very upset about her husband's disappearance. Robert Wagner is a jet setter who seems giddy about helping out this private eye. Julie Harris is a junkie jazz singer. Shelley Winters is hilarious as a blowsy, drunken former starlet. Strother Martin shows up as weird guru, just one year before he roughs up Newman in "Cool Hand Luke". Janet Leigh is Newman's estranged wife.

The film also takes advantage of the new permissiveness in film in regard to language and violence. It came out the same year as "Who's Afraid Of Virginia Woolf?". Ironically Arthur Hill, who appears here as Newman's lawyer pal, played the part of George in the original Broadway play of "Virginia Woolf." Some of the violence is still pretty disturbing today.

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18 minutes ago, Det Jim McLeod said:

Harper (1966) 8/10

 

Paul Newman plays the title role of a private eye searching for a rich woman's (Lauren Bacall) husband.

The story is not the big draw in this film, it is the incredible supporting cast. Bacall makes the most her small role as the wife who is not very upset about her husband's disappearance. Robert Wagner is a jet setter who seems giddy about helping out this private eye. Julie Harris is a junkie jazz singer. Shelley Winters is hilarious as a blowsy, drunken former starlet. Strother Martin shows up as weird guru, just one year before he roughs up Newman in "Cool Hand Luke". Janet Leigh is Newman's estranged wife.

The film also takes advantage of the new permissiveness in film in regard to language and violence. It came out the same year as "Who's Afraid Of Virginia Woolf?". Ironically Arthur Hill, who appears here as Newman's lawyer pal, played the part of George in the original Broadway play of "Virginia Woolf." Some of the violence is still pretty disturbing today.

I was able to catch this film in its entirety when it aired Wednesday night, and it was pretty good!  The supporting cast was excellent, and the dialog was fairly racy compared to films that came before it.  The one flaw I'd cite was the film's ending...a cliffhanger?  Really?

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4 minutes ago, midwestan said:

I was able to catch this film in its entirety when it aired Wednesday night, and it was pretty good!  The supporting cast was excellent, and the dialog was fairly racy compared to films that came before it.  The one flaw I'd cite was the film's ending...a cliffhanger?  Really?

At first it seemed like it was going to be a light hearted mystery, but when the characters started revealing their true selves, it turned dark and nasty, I liked the twists and turns. I wasn't too bothered by the ending, another sign of the times when movies were changing. 

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1 hour ago, Det Jim McLeod said:

Lugosi was originally supposed play the part of the doctor and Karloff was going to play the professor later played by Stanley Ridges. Karloff did not want to tackle the dual role so he was given the the doctor role, Lugosi was not suitable for the professor part so he was stuck with this minor role of a gangster. The publicity department thought up a scheme where Lugosi would be hypnotized for his death scene, supposedly making him feel like he is really suffocating. He screams and cries a bit in the scene but I'm pretty sure it was all a set up.

YES!

(and like, bless it dearly, MARK OF THE VAMPIRE, THE TRAILER is better than the film!)

 

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you know,

we all have actors that are "special" to us- who, after years of enjoying their work, we come to feel as though we know them and can even get defensive of them.

I am that way with LUGOSI.

And I think that's the REAL REASON I can't make it thru BLACK FRIDAY, it cheeses me off (sorry, language!) that Universal was miscasting him in this craptacular part within a year of his delicious turn as YGOR in SON OF FRANKENSTEIN.

Bela (AS ALWAYS) deserved better.

ps- anyone who wants to see LUGOSI OWN THE **** out of six minutes onscreen, check out his STAR turn as ROXOR in CHANDU THE MAGICIAN.

PS- God damn that man could wear a turban!

 

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"Night Nurse" - William A. Wellman - 1931

starring Barbara Stanwyck, John Blondell, Ben Lyon, Clark Gable, etc. -

a really wild, no-holds-barred pre-code film -

Stanwyck and Blondell are nurses in training -

we get a lot of details about the difficulties in becoming a nurse -

it's a rough life - and stay away from the doctors because doctors do not marry nurses -

and find yourself a wealthy patient who may offer you a better way of life -

then, Stanwyck and Blondell are employed as night nurses in the same household -

$$Spoilers$$ -

the two children who are bed-ridden are actually dying of malnutrition -

the wealthy mother is sexually promiscuous and a boozer and totally oblivious of her children -

her lover, the chaffeur (Gable), is plotting to kill the children along with the doctor -

so that they can get their hands on the children's trust fund and enjoy the good life -

while, at the same time, keeping the mother "out-of-comission" -

Stanwyck fights to save the children -

and gets socked to the floor by bad-guy Gable -

but, in the end, with the help of another doctor (Charles Winninger), she saves the children -

and, with the help of her bootlegger boyfriend (Ben Lyon), Gable is knocked off -

it is unlike any other pre-code film -

and moves at such a lively clip -

that you just might want to see it again -

   barbara-stanwyck-and-joan-blondell-night

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12 hours ago, Princess of Tap said:

*But  "The Girl Can't Help It" that I'm referring to is a classic rock and roll song sung by Little Richard from the rock and roll movie starring Jayne Mansfield called:

"The Girl Can't Help It".

 It's definitely not a "rock 'n roll movie", it's a 50's Tom Ewell/Jayne Mansfield comedy that tried to get some of the Music The Young People Were Into, and lucked out big time:
Little Richard, Fats Domino, The Platters, Gene Vincent, and not to mention Julie London singing "Cry Me a River".

It's not "The TAMI Show", but it'll do for a start.

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The Thrill of It All (1963)  -  7/10

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More lighthearted comedy with Doris Day as a housewife and mother of two who inadvertently becomes a media celebrity with her awkward commercials for soap. Her success causes discord with her doctor husband James Garner. Also featuring Arlene Francis, Edward Andrews, Robert Strauss, Reginald Owen, Elliott Reid, Hayden Rorke, Burt Mustin, Anne Newman, Carl Reiner, and Zasu Pitts. This was a pleasant diversion, with winning performances from the cast. The screenplay by Carl Reiner and Larry Gelbart is good, and Reiner is hilarious in a small role as various TV villains. 

Source: Universal DVD

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1 hour ago, rayban said:

"Night Nurse" - William A. Wellman - 1931

I think my favorite bit is when the older maid keeps going on to Stanwyck about giving the little girl a milk bath despite neither of them having the money to get that much milk.  Stanwyck tells her boyfriend about it, and the next shot is of him knocking over a dairy store to get the milk!  :lol:

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41 minutes ago, LawrenceA said:

The Thrill of It All (1963)  -  7/10

220px-The_Thrill_of_It_All_poster.jpg

More lighthearted comedy with Doris Day as a housewife and mother of two who inadvertently becomes a media celebrity with her awkward commercials for soap. Her success causes discord with her doctor husband James Garner. Also featuring Arlene Francis, Edward Andrews, Robert Strauss, Reginald Owen, Elliott Reid, Hayden Rorke, Burt Mustin, Anne Newman, Carl Reiner, and Zasu Pitts. This was a pleasant diversion, with winning performances from the cast. The screenplay by Carl Reiner and Larry Gelbart is good, and Reiner is hilarious in a small role as various TV villains. 

Source: Universal DVD

Edward Andrews is hysterical in this, especially during the traffic jam sequence.

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Toys in the Attic (1963)  -  6/10

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Melodrama based on Lillian Hellman's play, from director George Roy Hill. Dean Martin stars as a drifter of dubious merit and intent who arrives in New Orleans broke and with a young wife (Yvette Mimieux). Dean is doted on by his spinster sister (Geraldine Page) to the point of mania, while his other spinster sister (Wendy Hiller) is concerned about the reasons for the wayward brother's return. Also featuring Gene Tierney, Frank Silvera, Larry Gates,  and Nan Martin. Martin seems miscast, although he puts in some effort. Page chews up the scenery in her inimitable way, which will amuse or annoy viewers based on their tolerance of such. Hiller is quietly effective. This wasn't quite as bad or outrageous as I was expecting, for some reason. 

Source: TCM

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4 minutes ago, LawrenceA said:

 

Melodrama based on Lillian Hellman's play, Dean is doted on by his spinster sister (Geraldine Page) Page chews up the scenery in her inimitable way, which will amuse or annoy viewers based on their tolerance of such.

you know, it's funny. I've literally only seen Page in SUMMER AND SMOKE (where I thought she was fine) and HONDO (where she is EXCELLENT) and DAY OF THE LOCUST (but that was one time a loooooooooooooong time ago,) she didn't seem over the top in any of those.

and yet

I see sometimes people cite her as "hammy" or emotive, and I know there's got to be some of her later supporting work that qualifies her as such, I just have never seen THE POPE OF GREENWICH VILLAGE or PETE N TILLIE or the one where she's the overbearing mother...? (she got nominated for supporting for it...)

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12 hours ago, Swithin said:

I like some of Bela's 1940s and 50s movies, particularly Devil Bat. Return of the Vampire, and some of the films in which he had smaller roles, like Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man, Night Monster and You'll Find Out (as Prince Saliano). I even have a soft spot for this film:

 

You are a VERY FORGIVING MAN INDEED.

I would cite MOTHER RILEY MEETS THE VAMPIRE/ MY SON THE VAMPIRE/ VAMPIRE OVER LONDON as an example of the WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOORST FILM Bela ever ever ever ever did.

In fact, it's one of the worst films I've seen.

The musical numbers are pure, 100-proof TEDIUM.

If this was playing at a theater during the Blitz, I would take my chances in the openly-lit town square outside thankyouverymuch.

(Catchy title music for the American Version though.)

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2 minutes ago, LornaHansonForbes said:

you know, it's funny. I've literally only seen Page in SUMMER AND SMOKE (where I thought she was fine) and HONDO (where she is EXCELLENT) and DAY OF THE LOCUST (but that was one time a loooooooooooooong time ago,) she didn't seem over the top in any of those.

and yet

I see sometimes people cite her as "hammy" or emotive, and I know there's got to be some of her later supporting work that qualifies her as such, I just have never seen THE POPE OF GREENWICH VILLAGE or PETE N TILLIE or the one where she's the overbearing mother...? (she got nominated for supporting for it...)

I've seen all the ones you mention, although I haven't seen Day of the Locust in so long that I don't recall much about it besides the craziness at the end. 

With Page, I've also seen The Trip to BountifulSweet Bird of YouthYou're a Big Boy NowWhat Ever Happened to Aunt Alice?, The BeguiledInteriors (is that the overbearing mother one?), I'm Dancing as Fast as I CanThe Bride, and White Nights.

I like Page in many things (I'm one of those who fall on the "amused by her style" side of things that I mentioned above), but she's one of those performers who use a lot of "business" in their roles, always moving, twitchy, fluttery, lots of hand movement, facial changes, etc. Granted, she often plays eccentric characters, to put it mildly, so I think that sort of thing is appropriate for the most part.

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Bela's finest onscreen non-Dracula moments for me are:

THE THIRTEENTH CHAIR (1929), EVERY SECOND HE IS ONSCREEN IN WHITE ZOMBIE, his small role in NINOTCHKA where he pairs wonderfully with GARBO, SON OF FRANKENSTEIN and the sequel, as Roxor in CHANDU THE MAGICIAN, as Prince Saliano in YOU'LL FIND OUT!, and in THE DEVIL BAT, which I swear to GOD, I  can watch ANY TIME. 

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Just now, LawrenceA said:

\

I like Page in many things (I'm one of those who fall on the "amused by her style" side of things that I mentioned above), but she's one of those performers who use a lot of "business" in their roles, always moving, twitchy, fluttery, lots of hand movement, facial changes, etc. Granted, she often plays eccentric characters, to put it mildly, so I think that sort of thing is appropriate for the most part.

SHE HAS AN ODD VOICE. A little bit like ROCKY THE FLYING SQUIRREL/SHERMAN THE BOY, no?

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4 minutes ago, LornaHansonForbes said:

The musical numbers are pure, 100-proof TEDIUM.

How can you call that great musical number, "I lift up my fingers and I say tweet tweet shush shush now now come come" tedium? It's performed by the great Mother Riley (Arthur Lucan) as well as two great actresses: Hattie Jacques of Carry On fame; and Dandy Nichols. This is utterly British humour, though I'm afraid the film does peter out at the end.

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Page in "Interiors" is one of the most majestic performances I have ever seen on a screen.  Were she humble enough to pay attention,  Streep could have learned some things.

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