Jump to content
 
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...

A Fever in the Blood would have been better with a classic cast


FredCDobbs
 Share

Recommended Posts

This is a pretty good film about political intrigue. However, it is presented in a boring way, with a bunch of modern low-level look-alike actors, and without inspired photography, editing, or directing.

 

I’ve tried to watch this film twice now, but both times my mind drifts away into dreamland, and I lose track of what’s happening and who is who.

 

This film needs a great old classic director, and some great actors like E.G. Robinson as an investigator, C. Aubrey Smith as a judge, Lionel Barrymore as a lawyer, with Mary Astor, Barbara Stanwyck, and maybe Bette Davis.

 

It needed some close ups of sweating faces, some noir lighting, and Dutch tilts.

 

 

Like this:

 

And this:

 

And this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jLLhaAivmwg&list=PLikWsISj1PpqHR-OIIrSlQhHc7rOv3kTe

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

LOL, I said pretty much the same thing 2 years ago. :)

 

 

I think the script is basically pretty good, but it lacks a lot of stuff that an old crew and group of actors could have given it. As it is now, it IS forgetable. It was filmed entirely at the Warner Brothers Studio in Burbank, and in fact Efrem Zimbalist Jr. was filming 77 Sunset Strip at Warner Brothers Studio at that time, so this was really filmed as a long low-budget TV show, not a movie.

 

AND, in fact, Your Honor, the film's producer was Roy Huggins, who was strictly a long time Warner Brothers TV show producer, whose only major awards were two TV Emmy NOMINATIONS.

 

http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0400403/?ref_=ttfc_fc_cr2#producer

 

I rest my case.

 

:)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's not a bad film by any means - it just isn't a very distinguished one. Despite a director with decades of experience, it all looks like a WB TV show of the period. That's not exactly a knock coming from me - when TCM's evening programming doesn't tempt me, I'm often running old episodes of 77 Sunset Strip, Bourbon St. Beat and Maverick.

 

But those shows were shot quickly and with little time for composition. Surely they gave A Fever in the Blood a few weeks to shoot, but as you noted, it's rather bland.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

clore,

 

Yes, that was my whole point. It is a good story, a good script, but it was made in such a bland way, nobody remembers it much.

 

If it had been shot the classic way with classic actors, it could have been a great film, since the basic story was so good.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That one shot where we see Zimbalist tapping his pipe in the rear view mirror of the vehicle driven by the phone tapper was about the most inventive in the film. But the set it was shot on is overly familiar to anyone who has ever seen more than one WB TV show or movie.

 

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

in fact, Your Honor, the film's producer was Roy Huggins, who was strictly a long time Warner Brothers TV show producer, whose only major awards were two TV Emmy NOMINATIONS.

 

I rest my case.

 

You can make a strong case that Roy Huggins was, in his field, something of a genius. His three masterpieces -- Maverick, The Fugitive, and The Rockford Files -- have thrilled, chilled, amused, entertained, and fascinated me much more than many bloated blockbusters with a bank vault full of Oscars.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I watched FITB a second time yesterday, and I also agree that its problem was in the casting and directing rather than in the script.  What's really eery about the casting is that if Jack Kelly hadn't dyed his hair blond, he and Zimbalist would be virtual ringers for each other whenever they flashed that squinty-eyed, self-depreciating, toothy smile of theirs.  Kelly's face is a bit narrower, but other than that they could easily be mistaken for brothers.  You can see this particularly at the start of the movie, prior to when they became political rivals.

 

You could almost make the same point about the movie after that, Twilight of Honor.  Not as good a script as Fever in the Blood, but it still suffered from the incredibly bland performance of Richard Chamberlain.  Even Claude Rains just kind of mailed it in, throwing out one bromide after the other and not letting up until the inevitable marriage at the end of the movie.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

You can make a strong case that Roy Huggins was, in his field, something of a genius. His three masterpieces -- Maverick, The Fugitive, and The Rockford Files -- have thrilled, chilled, amused, entertained, and fascinated me much more than many bloated blockbusters with a bank vault full of Oscars.

 

Yes, but weren't these TV shows limited to an hour? About 46 mniutes with commercials?

 

The movie in question might have been better if it had been 46 minutes long, with commercials.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

© 2022 Turner Classic Movies Inc. All Rights Reserved Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Cookie Settings
×
×
  • Create New...