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film lover 293

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  1. spence--Director Otto Preminger was supposed to have done LSD with Timothy Leary before Preminger filmed "Skidoo" (1968).
  2. "Krakatoa, East of Java" (1969)--Starring Maximilian Schell, Diane Baker, Brian Keith, and Sal Mineo. This is the only disaster movie I can think of that was made in Cinerama. Entertaining movie follows the disaster movie formula (take five or more characters with their own personal problems, introduce the viewer to them, set them all heading toward certain disaster, throw in plenty of Oscar nominated/winning special effects, mix well, and see who the script says survives). The plot: On 1883 Krakatoa, two boys are looking through homemade telescopes at a smoking volcano. A nun rings a school-bell, and they are late to class. Once settled and singing a song, the volcano erupts. There is a flashback to a week ago (the film is never certain about timelines). Captain Hanson (Schell) is taking the Batavia Queen to Krakatoa in search of some sunken jewels. His already married friend Laura (Baker) joins him. Add diver/laudanum addict Connerly (Keith), plus balloonist Borghese (Mineo), and the movie's ready to go. The actors have the sense to keep out of the way of the special effects, which is what the filmmakers assumed people wanted to see. Whenever the plot slows down or comes to a halt, the director throws in a volcano eruption or a clue as to what's going to happen (dead fish floating on the water, unexplained smoke outside, etc). These events baffle most of the characters. When all hell finally does break loose, the special effects are excellent. There are a few obvious matte paintings and use of miniatures, but overall the special effects are damn near awe inspiring. The movie is long, but the special effects are worth waiting for. They were nominated for an Oscar, but lost to "Marooned". Film is essentially a "B" movie, with "A" special effects. BTW, Krakatoa was west of Java. 2.9/4. Source--YouTube. There are at least three versions on YT; watch the one that's two hours, eleven minutes long.
  3. Lover Come Back Next--Plymouth Adventure
  4. Sunday, Nov. 5th; all times E.S.T.: 8:00 p.m. "Unseen Cinema: Early American Avant Garde Film 1894-1941" (2006)--Full title is in the brief TCM article on the film. This film includes 16 short films or sequences, including a sequence from 1941's "Peer Gynt" starring a teenage Charlton Heston, "Ballet Mecanique" (1923) with a score by George Antheil, and more. 10:45 p.m. "Unseen Cinema 2: The Mechanized Eye" (2011)--More short films, including one by Orson Welles. Check TCM's article for more about this film.
  5. "She" (1911)--Starring Marguerite Snow and James Cruze. This version of the film includes a prologue, which takes up half the running time of 25 minutes. She Who Must Be Obeyed (Snow) meets and falls in love with Kallikrates (Cruze). He refuses her advances, she kills him, then mourns him. A descendent of his, Leo Vincey (Cruze) grows up in England. When he turns 25, he is sent to Africa to kill She. After falling in love with Leo, she shows him the body of Kallikrates, which She's preserved for 2000 years; She then makes it disappear. Then She takes one too many baths in The Flame., which had kept her youthful for a couple thousand years. I've never seen this version of "She" available. I know the 1916 and 1917 versions are considered Lost (if I'm wrong, please post). This version is notable mainly for silent film lovers. The special effects are primitive, and look more like She's melting that last time in The Flame, the acting is functional, but it's worth the 20 odd minutes to see how H. Rider Haggard's story was interpreted. It's interesting to see future director James Cruze (1924's "The Covered Wagon, etc.) in front of the camera No rating, because film's over 100 years old. An interesting curio. Source--YouTube--search "She 1911".
  6. Saturday, Nov. 4th/5th; all times E.S.T.: 12:00 p.m. "Trooper Hook" (1957)--Underrated Joel McCrea/Barbara Stanwyck western deals with some of the same themes as "The Searchers" (1956). 2:00 a.m. "Deadly Friend" (1986)--The first of a Wes Craven double feature, film is definitely worth a watch. 3:45 a.m. "Swamp Thing" (1982)--Another recommendation for this movie.
  7. Friday, Nov. 3rd/4th; 1970's thrillers. All times E.S.T.: 10:15 p.m. "The Wilby Conspiracy" (1975)--Interesting looking anti-apartheid South African thriller starring Sidney Poitier, Michael Caine, and Nicol Williamson. 2:00 a.m. "Coma" (1978)--Good Michael Crichton thriller with Genevieve Bujold, Michael Douglas, Richard Widmark, and Elizabeth Ashley.
  8. Ruby Gentry Next--Curse of the Werewolf (1961)
  9. sewhite2000--Guessing from the threads' title, and remembering several posters were upset that they missed TCM's airing of this movie, 1959's "The Best of Everything"?
  10. I Was A Male War Bride Next--The Last Voyage
  11. "The Horror of Frankenstein" (1970)--Starring Ralph Bates, Kate O'Mara, and Veronica Carlson. Directed, written, and produced by Jimmy Sangster. Lunatic Hammer remake of 1957's "The Curse of Frankenstein" has crazed or just plain sloppy inconsistencies. It may have been intended as parody, but I was mostly laughing at the film instead of with it. As the film opens, Victor Frankenstein (Bates) is in medical school in 19th century Austria. After he makes a fool out of a professor and class ends, a classmate asks him "What's hypochondria?" A female classmate volunteers to help him in anatomy; a male's offer is declined. After Victor's father (George Belbin) says he'll die before he wastes money to send Victor to Vienna to study, Victor arranges for his death. After Victor becomes Baron Frankenstein, he goes off to Vienna to study. The film follows a well-worn, mostly predictable path from here. The picture has elements that had to be intentional parody. There's a team of husband-wife grave-robbers (Dennis Price and Joan Rice) who do battle while they dig into graves, and complain they aren't getting paid enough. Alys (O'Mara), who is maid and bed partner for the father and later his son, is made to be a dreadful cook who all the characters complain about in the course of the movie. But then there are things like characters who live in the castle forgetting where Frankenstein's laboratory is (upstairs); the maid refers to it being upstairs and downstairs. The creditors of a victim's father refers to her owing "about $12,000 bucks" . The victims are all predictable; just listen to their lines. For those in the audience who needed more help, the women with the lowest cut dresses in the thinnest material are sure to die. Director Sangster makes sure there are plentiful bosom shots. The Monster's (David Prowse) appearance is unique. He's blond, is wearing only what looks like a iron dog collar around his neck and white underwear, has stitches all over and looks like he's spent all his time working out at the local gym. Was he Mel Brooks' inspiration for the Monster in 1974's "Young Frankenstein" and the inspiration for the Monster in "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" (1976)?? Bates, O'Mara, and Carlson deliver professional performances, although Carlson seems to be fighting a case of the giggles. Price and Rice are the intentional delights of the film as the bickering grave-robbers. Film still has the expected Hammer elements, and looks good. This Should be a terrible film, but it's more entertaining than it has any right to be. I laughed more at this than at some so-called comedies. 2.3/4. Source--YouTube.
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