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I Just Watched...

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13 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

Postscript: the copy I watched was from taken from a recording off of a Canadian channel called Drive-In Classics. Is anyone around here familiar with it? It seems to have gone away the better part of a decade ago, but judging from what I read, I would have loved it.

and they switched it to a Sundance channel ??  There's a Drive-in Classic app available for Roku, but this isn't among the offerings on it (mostly very bad horror/grindhouse stuff).

It's interesting that this was the final film for both Frances Farmer and Bobby Driscoll--two people with such sad lives

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5 minutes ago, shutoo said:

and they switched it to a Sundance channel ??  There's a Drive-in Classic app available for Roku, but this isn't among the offerings on it (mostly very bad horror/grindhouse stuff).

It's interesting that this was the final film for both Frances Farmer and Bobby Driscoll--two people with such sad lives

thanks for the FYI on this.

ps- I have been meaning to ask you for a while now, what does your screen name mean?

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On 8/9/2019 at 5:31 PM, NickAndNora34 said:

That's what I was thinking. Two very dominant personalities. It might have proved to be another "Baby Jane" situation. 

Or worse.

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having HULU means I have entirely lost track of whose day it is supposed to be on SUTS (TCM ON HULU is almost everything that's played on TCM for the last 7 days alphabetized, no prominence given to what date it aired)

i'm unmoored.

as such, I watched ZIEGFELD FOLLIES (1945) the other day, right after my post wherein I badmouthed MGM and their UBERPERFEKTION tendencies.

this is an interesting film for me because it was probably one of the first 20 or so classic movies i ever saw, circa age 14 or so (around 1992) and I want to say that I saw it on CINEMAX, which BELIEVE IT OR NOT, BACK IN THE DAY WAS A PRETTY AWESOME SOURCE OF CLASSIC MOVIES [and, of course, delicious late night video trash]

anyone else remember THE SUMMER OF 1001 MOVIES?

This is a fun movie, although I will admit to skipping certain scenes here and there (water ballet doesn't speak to me)

The THREE COMIC BITS of RED SKELTON, KEENAN WYNN ("I'd like to speak to OOGO in TRANSYLVANIA, no, I don't know the last name...") and (ESPECIALLY) VICTOR MOORE (the "JUST PAY THE TWO DOLLARS!!!" bit is seriously one of the funniest film moments of the 1940's) are STANDOUTS.

The one with FANNY BRICE, bless her pea-picking heart, is undistilled agony.

As much as I adore the LUCILLE BALL/CATWOMEN segment (a lot of spooky girls and gay men in the audience "found themselves" on seeing this), it's WEIRD that LUCY HAS NO LINES.

ziegfeld-follies-year-1945-director-vinc

The GENE KELLY/FRED ASTAIRE bit is perfect.

my favorite will always be THE GRE[ER gARSON]AT LADY GIVES AN INTERVIEW with JUDY GARLAND. All the young Gay men in the audience who managed not to find themselves during the aforementioned LUCILLE BALL/CATWOMEN number went through a DEEP CATHARSIS on seeing this. I ADORE EVERY MINUTE OF IT AND IT IS AS IF SOMEONE HAS PLACED MY DEEPEST FANTASIES AND WORLDVIEW ONTO THE SCREEN FOR 15 MINUTES. 

i HOPE IF I EVER EXPERIENCE A FULL NERVOUS BREAKDOWN, I WILL IMAGINE MYSELF TO BE JUDY'S CHARACTER IN THIS:

judy-garland.jpg?fit=540,420&ssl=1

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3 minutes ago, LornaHansonForbes said:

ps- I have been meaning to ask you for a while now, what does your screen name mean?

oh, it has it's roots in an old joke...which led to a 'fufu' birthday cake...well, you had to be there...this is the only site I use it on.

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"The Caine Mutiny" - Edward Dymtyrk - 1954 -

starring Humphrey Bogart, Van Johnson,  Fred MacMurray, Tom Tully, etc .

This movie was both a novel and a play - both were very successful.

I saw the play on Broadway - it's a gripping courtroom drama.

It starred Michael Moriarty.

The film shows us everything that is the material of the trial.

Only in the last thirty minutes does the movie enter the courtroom.

The movie is essentially a bastard version of the play which has little of its' power.

Still, the movie is in very competent hands - the director and the actors.

Robert Francis, who has a leading role, made only four films before his untimely death - an airplane crash.  

Humphrey Bogart, who is excellent, deserved the play version.  

the-caine-mutiny-humphrey-bogart-fred-ma

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I went to see the TCM 50th Anniversary showing of Hello Dolly Sunday.  Boy, did Barbra look so lucious!  

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16 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

I believe the posted clip was an outtake with Gardner's voice left on the audio. In the released version it was dubbed over, but her original vocals were recorded during filming. Perhaps as a matter of course, or they had not yet decided to dub over her during principal production.

If I remember correctly, it was Ava's vocals that were released on the soundtrack LP, but the final decision was to dub her in the movie. (after Ava worked with a vocal couch). This was typical MGM. They wanted perfect singers in their films, almost everyone was dubbed!

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Stage Struck  (1958)  -  6/10

220px-Stage_struck.jpeg

Backstage drama, based on Zoe Akins' play Morning Glory, directed by Sidney Lumet. Susan Strasberg stars as Eva Lovelace, a small-town girl who comes to NYC to be a star on the Broadway stage. Her persistence and appealing naivete attract the attention of producer Lewis Easton (Henry Fonda) and writer Joe Sheridan (Christopher Plummer in his film debut). Also featuring Herbert Marshall, Joan Greenwood, Pat Harrington Sr., John Fiedler, Steve Franken, and Jack Weston and Roger C. Carmel in their film debuts. An updating of the 1933 film, made as a showpiece for Strasberg, who is very good here. I was also impressed with Marshall as an aged former matinee idol. The material is a bit too old-hat and predictable, but it's worth seeing if you're interested in the performers.

Source: internet

Henry-Fonda-Stage-Struck-1958-Vintage-St

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35 minutes ago, Hibi said:

If I remember correctly, it was Ava's vocals that were released on the soundtrack LP, but the final decision was to dub her in the movie. (after Ava worked with a vocal couch). This was typical MGM. They wanted perfect singers in their films, almost everyone was dubbed!

Except, unfortunately, KATHRYN GRAYSON.

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Just now, LornaHansonForbes said:

Except, unfortunately, KATHRYN GRAYSON.

LOL! True.

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The Hands of Orlac  (1960)  -  6/10

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French horror/crime thriller with Mel Ferrer as a famous concert pianist whose hands are severely damaged in an accident. Cutting-edge surgery is performed, and Mel is convinced that his hands have been replaced with those of a recently executed strangler, and that he is now being compelled to commit more murders. As his paranoia and uncertainty grow, a shady stage magician (Christopher Lee) decides to exploit Ferrer for all that he's worth. With Dany Carrel, Lucile Saint-Simon, Edouard Hemme, Donald Wolfit, Felix Aylmer, Basil Sydney, David Peel, and Donald Pleasence. English and French versions were filmed simultaneously, and I watched the French. I'd consider this the least of the three versions of the story that I've seen filmed, after Mad Love (1935, with Cline Clive and Peter Lorre), and the silent Hands of Orlac (1924, with Conrad Veidt and Fritz Kortner). This version is still worth a look for Ferrer's decent performance and the attractive Carrel as Lee's showgirl accomplice.

Source: YouTube

 

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I thought I was the only one who cannot tolerate Kathryn Grayson’s singing.  I find it so shrill and unpleasant (and I don’t like the faces she makes when she sings, either).  Jeanette MacDonald and Jane Powell are almost as bad, though they at least had somewhat more tolerable personalities on film.  

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13 minutes ago, Nightbird311 said:

I thought I was the only one who cannot tolerate Kathryn Grayson’s singing.  I find it so shrill and unpleasant (and I don’t like the faces she makes when she sings, either).  Jeanette MacDonald and Jane Powell are almost as bad, though they at least had somewhat more tolerable personalities on film.  

You're not the only one.   There is a thread about her being featured as Star of the Month.

Way more negative comments than positive ones.   In fact she may have been one of the least welcomed SOTM in  a decade.

 

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Letter Never Sent  (1960)  -  8/10

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Russian man vs. nature drama from director Mikhail Kalatozov. A 4-person group is dropped into the wilds of Siberia during the spring thaw. They are tasked with conducting a geological survey in search of diamond deposits, but instead they end up in a struggle to survive when the environment becomes too hostile. Featuring truly amazing B&W cinematography, this is a simple story told beautifully, with unforgettable location work and some dedicated performances from the suffering cast. Recommended.

Source: The Criterion Channel

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6 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

Stage Struck  (1958)  -  6/10

220px-Stage_struck.jpeg

Backstage drama, based on Zoe Akins' play Morning Glory, directed by Sidney Lumet. Susan Strasberg stars as Eva Lovelace, a small-town girl who comes to NYC to be a star on the Broadway stage. Her persistence and appealing naivete attract the attention of producer Lewis Easton (Henry Fonda) and writer Joe Sheridan (Christopher Plummer in his film debut). Also featuring Herbert Marshall, Joan Greenwood, Pat Harrington Sr., John Fiedler, Steve Franken, and Jack Weston and Roger C. Carmel in their film debuts. An updating of the 1933 film, made as a showpiece for Strasberg, who is very good here. I was also impressed with Marshall as an aged former matinee idol. The material is a bit too old-hat and predictable, but it's worth seeing if you're interested in the performers.

Source: internet

Henry-Fonda-Stage-Struck-1958-Vintage-St

It's a shame that Susan Strasberg has fallen into oblivion.

Perhaps it was the failure of her film career.

Perhaps she wasn't that interested.

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2 minutes ago, rayban said:

It's a shame that Susan Strasberg has fallen into oblivion.

Perhaps it was the failure of her film career.

Perhaps she wasn't that interested.

Yeah, I was thinking the same thing while watching Stage Struck, and having recently seen her in Kapo. I read up on her life and career a bit earlier today. It seems she started to drift towards television when she should have been making more and bigger films. She later claimed that she did so to save her father (Lee Strasberg) from "any embarrassment my failures would cause", so she chose easy, quick and largely unnoticed TV work and B films. She also drifted into heavy drug use by the late 60's and her marriage to Christopher Jones. She claimed that their drug abuse lead to their child's birth defects. Of course later on she got sick and passed too young at age 60.

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I've always liked Stage Struck, it's been shown on TCM over the years. Susan Strasberg was a lovely actress. beautiful and talented. Another film TCM has shown, not often, but it does show up is Scream of Fear. Strassberg, Ann Todd and Christopher Lee. It's a Hammer film. Christopher Lee was quoted as saying he thought it was the best film Hammer ever made. It's a good thriller.

A few years ago I posted about an article in Vanity Fair that I read. Susan spoke about Marilyn Monroe, her dad and the awful treatment she received from her step mother and how the step mother stole a very valuable necklace Marilyn had left Susan. Marilyn and Susan were very close. Susan needed money for her daughter, the step mother refused to help her. I wish I could find the article but I tried and can't.

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I've seen a few today for the first time, She's Having a Baby (after the talk about it last week plus I had meant to get around to it for a while after hearing it was John Hughes personal film), The Naked Jungle (slow start, but very effective once it gets going), and finally finishing up There's Always a Woman, but my thoughts keep going back to a neglected Paramount title I saw from the library before bed last night, 1982's I'm Dancing As Fast as I Can, and so i jotted down a review.

Quote

I watched this because I'm on a bit of a tear trying to track down vintage Paramount titles, and this was one of the films available at the local library. In a way, this film marks a beginning and an end. On the one hand, it started the producing career of Scott Rudin, who has not left the Hollywood scene yet, and on the other hand, the film's complete failure at the box office led to the end of Jill Clayburgh's all-too-brief period of top female stardom. 

The film itself is sometimes referred to as TV-like, and while it is true that the film's color scheme is drab and clinical, the film itself could never have been made on 80s TV via the pills, the language, and, when it comes, the horrifying violence. At times, it does seem a bit much, especially in the first big scene that Clayburgh has after quitting Valium pills, a scene that shows her convulsing uncontrollably while foaming at the mouth.  But the film more than makes up for it with Clayburgh's committed performance, and two other stunning supporting parts.

In the lead, Clayburgh at first seems like your typical, slightly harried working woman, but after she goes off the pills she convinces effortlessly as a woman perilously going over the edge, physically and mentally, with no stopping her downward spiral. This also makes for some gravely disturbing scenes, where, at the height of her mania, she is brutally and horrifically beaten by boyfriend Nicol Williamson is some shattering scenes that are some of the most horrifying of any era. (I'll admit I was more than relieved when Williamson abruptly left the film with 40 minutes left to go)

The other two supporting performances (the only other roles of note in the film) are also stunning. One is from Dianne Wiest, in an early part, as a psychiatrist. She enters late in the film but she immediately finds the right note for her scenes, deliberiately dialing down while Clayburgh rages, and even at this early point, you can sense what a great screen talent Wiest would become. The other comes from Geraldine Page, who plays the subject of Clayburgh's documentary about a terminal cancer patient. There are two difficult scenes that Page nails, one toward the beginning, where her indignation at the upbeat framing of her saga almost literally burns a hole through the screen and the other, late in the film, on her deathbead looking completely haggard but doling out wisdom and a degree of understanding that belies how she looks. I have the distinct feeling that if the film had not sunk without trace, that Page would have been an Oscar nominee for this, and it stands as some of her best work.

In addition to the aforementioned issues with the somewhat nondescript feel and a few scenes that just go too far over the top, one other is the distinct feeling, via billing that quite a bit of the film, especially in the psychiatric ward scenes ended up on the cutting room floor. Joe Pesci and John Lithgow turn up, both essentially for one brief scene apiece. Ellen Greene and Margaret Ladd only have maybe two lines. Daniel Stern only has one, and CCH Pounder none at all, and its a pity to see all these performers have so little to do. But as a centerpiece for the three stunning performances, it is worth watching,  and in need of rediscovery.

 

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A Story of David: The Hunted  (1960)  -  5/10

Jeff-Chandler-A-Story-of-David.jpg

Biblical adventure, with Jeff Chandler as David in the years following his defeat of Goliath. His status as a war hero engenders the jealousy and animosity of the unstable King Saul (Basil Sydney), who eventually puts a price on David's head. The hero and his loyal band of fighters roam the country looking for sanctuary, eventually facing further peril. With Barbara Shelley, Peter Arne, David Knight, Robert Brown, Zena Marshall, Richard O'Sullivan, and Donald Pleasence. The first biblical movie to film in Israel, the location shooting doesn't add much, as this is also clumsily directed by Bob McNaught, and suffers from a lethargic script. Pleasence looks amusing with his black wig and curly beard.

Source: internet

 

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1 hour ago, LawrenceA said:

Yeah, I was thinking the same thing while watching Stage Struck, and having recently seen her in Kapo. I read up on her life and career a bit earlier today. It seems she started to drift towards television when she should have been making more and bigger films. She later claimed that she did so to save her father (Lee Strasberg) from "any embarrassment my failures would cause", so she chose easy, quick and largely unnoticed TV work and B films. She also drifted into heavy drug use by the late 60's and her marriage to Christopher Jones. She claimed that their drug abuse lead to their child's birth defects. Of course later on she got sick and passed too young at age 60.

Yes, it's a sad story.

She showed such promise.

Her autobiography is an eye-opener.

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2 hours ago, lavenderblue19 said:

I wish I could find the article but I tried and can't.

I remember reading this article, too.  I think I found it on Vanity Fair's website:  "The Mentor and the Movie Star"  from June 2003.  It talks about the MM auction (including the Happy Birthday dress) and how Lee Strasberg's estate was "75% of Marilyn's estate" and how he had disinherited his daughter and son.  Sad but interesting read.

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Matador  (1986)  -  7/10

Matador-1986-3.jpg

Spanish thriller from director Pedro Almodovar. Angel (Antonio Banderas) is twentysomething-year-old virgin as aspiring bullfighter who faints at the sight of blood. After a fumbled rape attempt, he turns himself in to the police, but when they don't believe him, he confesses to a series of unsolved murders as well. Attorney Maria (Assumpta Serna) comes forward to volunteer to defend him, for reasons of her own. And then there's Angel's bullfighting teacher Diego (Nacho Martinez), a former matador who suffered a serious goring, leaving him with a limp and some odd sexual hang ups. With Eva Cobo, Julieta Serrano, Chus Lampreave, and Carmen Maura. This is often lewd and taboo-smashing; it earned a retroactive NC-17 from the MPAA. It's also very funny, unpredictable, and well acted, with a lot of good dialogue.

Source: The Criterion Channel

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