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THE LEGEND OF LYLAH CLARE


HoldenIsHere
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I've seen it once all the way through, and I tried to watch it again last night. I couldn't do it; what a bizarre tale (and bad acting from a group of top-notch stars, IMHO). I realize it's camp; but it's bad camp! I ended up watching Elliot Ness and

"The Untouchables"...............they don't disappoint!

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MGM had clearly fallen from being the prestigious film company they had once been, by 1968. A quick look at some of the titles they released during 1968 give a clear indication of how far they had fallen. Very few of the titles were successes at the box-office or with critics although there are a handful that received kudos. Almost none of them, however, would end up on a listing of the great MGM films made.

 

Mrs. Brown, You've Got a Lovely Daughter 1968

Hate for Hate 1968

Revenge for Revenge 1968

The Biggest Bundle of Them All January 17, 1968

Sol Madrid February 7, 1968

The Power February 21, 1968

Day of the Evil Gun March 1, 1968

The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich March 6, 1968

Stay Away, Joe March 8, 1968

Guns for San Sebastian March 20, 1968

2001: A Space Odyssey April 6, 1968

A Dollar Between the Teeth April 24, 1968

Battle Beneath the Earth May 15, 1968

Speedway June 12, 1968

Where Were You When the Lights Went Out? June 19, 1968

The Helicopter Spies June 21, 1968

Dark of the Sun July 3, 1968

Kiss the Other Sheik July 29, 1968

A Time to Sing August 15, 1968

The Legend of Lylah Clare August 21, 1968

A Man, a Horse, a Gun August 1968

The Young Runaways September 11, 1968

Hot Millions September 19, 1968

The Subject Was Roses October 13, 1968

Live a Little, Love a Little October 23, 1968

Ice Station Zebra October 23, 1968

The Split November 4, 1968

The Shoes of the Fisherman November 14, 1968

The Impossible Years December 5, 1968

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I love Kim Novak in this movie. The nuances she brings to the convoluted character are amazing.

 

I believe all of the major characters show moments of brilliance.

 

I believe that an editing to shorten it by a third would do wonders but I believe little could be done concerning the poor selections in camera angles and staging. Ernest Borgnine's best lines are ruined by him being behind a desk.

 

My best ranking of movies is not by stars or thumbs ups but by how often I wish to watch them. There are some which I would like to see each month and there are some which I would be happy to see once each year and there are some which I might wish to see next at some date late in the 32nd Century. This movie is solidly at the once-each-five-years mark.

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Kim actually did one more film after "Lylah Clare" entitled "The Great Bank Robbery" which WB released in the fall of 1969 prior to taking a break.

 

"Robbery" co-starred Zero Mostel and Clint Walker and was not successful.

 

Sydney Guilaroff, who did Kim's hair for "Lylah Clare" once noted that Kim had thoroughly enjoyed filming the movie and was very upbeat throughout the shoot. He took her to dinner at Musso and Frank a couple of times during the making of the film.

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Yeah, Paulio, I saw that MGM promo early this morning. Most of those "films" were forgetable. I haven't even HEARD of most of them, and I was an avid moviegoer in those days.

 

That MGM couldn't line up anybody better than the practically disbanded( at the time) HERMAN'S HERMITS for a movie based on a four year old pop song tells you something about the dire staits they were in at the time.

 

Sepiatone

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> You've got to be kidding??????????? (House of Dark Shadows???)

 

It had a built-in audience, all the fans of the TV show (many of them adolescents or teenagers who saw the movie more than once) flocked to see the movie starring their favorites from the TV show.

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> HoldenIsHere wrote:

> Was Kim Novak's "Lylah" voice dubbed?

 

Yes. The poor dubbing is most noticeable during her conversation with Molly. I do not know the name of the person who dubbed the voice but I remember reading that it was a person who was much older.

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SansFin, Elsa's exchange with Molly is a strange scene in a movie full of strange scenes. First we have Molly poking Elsa with her cane and verbally abusing her. Then Elsa becomes "Lylah" (along with the dubbed voice) and turns the tables on Molly, mocking her and tapping Molly's prosthetic leg with the cane that Molly jabbed her with.

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  • 5 months later...
  • 2 weeks later...

I just realized why the musical stinger that accents the moment when Elsa steps into Lylah's footprints outside Grauman's Chinese Theater (and other dramatic moments in the movie) is so amusingly familiar.

 

Frank DeVol recycled this bit of music for THE BRADY BUNCH Hawaii episodes to accent the tiki statue that brough the Bradys so much bad luck, including Greg's near-fatal surfing wipeout and Alice's back injury during her hula lesson:

 

 

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I will never be able to forget this film....for all the wrong reasons.

 

Yes, I think viewers' reactions to many parts of this movie are not the ones the filmmakers were aiming for. 

With Robert (WHATEVER HAPPENED TO BABY JANE?)  Aldrich though one never knows.

 

What did Aldrich hope would be our reaction to the crying clowns?  Or to Barkwell dog food commercial at the end?

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The movie is suppose to be a  shocking revealing look at the dark side of Hollywood- just look at the sleazy poster - which is sex crazed.   The point of the commercial might be that Hollywood will manufacture stars and sell them like dog food  and then dump them when someone younger more desirable comes along.

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