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1 hour ago, EricJ said:

Studios reportedly still wanted to go with a goofy 60's-style Batman in 1989, which was coin of the realm before producer Michael Uslan showed them what the current comics were doing with Frank Miller's "Dark Knight" revival.

And in 1977, Star Wars (which was still only one out-of-nowhere hit) was still considered a "salute to Flash Gordon", which, in tandem with the runaway hit for the '78 Chris Reeve Superman, had producers thinking in terms of "iconic" comic-strip/book heroes.  Hence the 1980 Flash Gordon movie, which was originally going to be produced by the He-Man animators as a straightforward version of the comic strips.

For comic book fans the '60s Batman TV show was a mixed blessing. We liked it because our genre was getting some publicity which after the '50s Seduction of the Innocent meltdown was really needed. And we hated it because it treated our beloved characters as silly, ridiculous kid stuff barely above the funny animal comics.

When the movie was first announced in '87-'88 fans were terrified that it was going to be a rehash of the '60s campiness especially when Michael Keaton was announced as Batman and he'd be wearing a prosthetic chin (😳) for the role.

However, Adam West in an interview later said that (and I can't remember if it was his idea or a synopsis that was presented to him before the final screenplay was written and cast) he and Burt Ward would reprise their roles but done in a serious manner set years after the show had ended.  Batman and Robin had been forcibly retired for much of the intervening years. One night as  Bruce and Dick are sitting around stately Wayne Manor a familiar sign suddenly lights up the night sky. Bruce turns to Dick and solemnly says, "Come old chum. They need us again!" And the classic Batman theme fired up as the opening credits rolled.

I was one of those fans worried about how the movie was going to portray the Dark Knight but I gotta admit when I read that interview I was was wowed!

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4 hours ago, EricJ said:

Studios reportedly still wanted to go with a goofy 60's-style Batman in 1989, which was coin of the realm before producer Michael Uslan showed them what the current comics were doing with Frank Miller's "Dark Knight" revival.

 

11 year old LORNA sitting in that PACKED SOLD OUT THEATER IN JUNE 1989 was a little disappointed when I realized THE PENGUIN wasn't going to show up...

I still liked it tho.

Sorta.

Mostly.

Yeah, I liked it...

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2 hours ago, Citizen Ed said:

For comic book fans the '60s Batman TV show was a mixed blessing. We liked it because our genre was getting some publicity which after the '50s Seduction of the Innocent meltdown was really needed. And we hated it because it treated our beloved characters as silly, ridiculous kid stuff barely above the funny animal comics.

When the movie was first announced in '87-'88 fans were terrified that it was going to be a rehash of the '60s campiness especially when Michael Keaton was announced as Batman and he'd be wearing a prosthetic chin (😳) for the role.

However, Adam West in an interview later said that (and I can't remember if it was his idea or a synopsis that was presented to him before the final screenplay was written and cast) he and Burt Ward would reprise their roles but done in a serious manner set years after the show had ended.  Batman and Robin had been forcibly retired for much of the intervening years. One night as  Bruce and Dick are sitting around stately Wayne Manor a familiar sign suddenly lights up the night sky. Bruce turns to Dick and solemnly says, "Come old chum. They need us again!" And the classic Batman theme fired up as the opening credits rolled.

I was one of those fans worried about how the movie was going to portray the Dark Knight but I gotta admit when I read that interview I was was wowed!

I read that the reason Adam West never cameoed in any of the Batman films is because he was STILL pitching a film where he would play Batman again.  I kind of think it would be a fun idea.  Unfortunately the animated special from just a few years ago is the only time he and Ward reprised their roles.  Kind of lucky we got that even.

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16 hours ago, LornaHansonForbes said:

11 year old LORNA sitting in that PACKED SOLD OUT THEATER IN JUNE 1989 was a little disappointed when I realized THE PENGUIN wasn't going to show up...

I still liked it tho.

Sorta.

Mostly.

Yeah, I liked it...

My favorite part of that Batman was when Jack Nicholson falls into the acid vat.

Batman Returns was everything for 8-year old me.  I had the VHS, all of the "collectible" giant plastic cups from McDonald's (made for great large water cups during the summer), everything. I was (and maybe still am on some level) obsessed with the scene where Michelle Pfeiffer flips out and somehow turns a leather jacket into a full leather catsuit.  I especially loved the scene where she sews her "nails" into her leather gloves. 

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1 hour ago, speedracer5 said:

My favorite part of that Batman was when Jack Nicholson falls into the acid vat.

Batman Returns was everything for 8-year old me.  I had the VHS, all of the "collectible" giant plastic cup from McDonald's (made for great large water cups during the summer), everything. I was (and maybe still am on some level) obsessed with the scene where Michelle Pfeiffer flips out and somehow turns a leather jacket into a full leather catsuit.  I especially loved the scene where she sews her "nails" into her leather gloves. 

I need to re-watch the first two Batman films.  I was 10 when the first one came out but i don't ever recall being overwhelmed by them.  I did end up becoming a big fan of the comics afterwards but i never realized at the what was going on with the Miller graphic novels and how the first film was a darker take on the character.  It was just Batman to me.  Don't think i've seen Returns since i saw it in the theatre.

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Finally watched Brewster McCloud.  Spoilers below although i feel i'm the lst person on here to see this film.  I enjoyed it because of all of the creative elements to it but still confused on the actual plot.  Things just kind of happen and the backstory and the filler on the plot details isn't there.  The opening was hilarious with the rich landlord behaving horribly to end up rolling down the freeway to his death, but who are these characters- Brewster and the older woman who seems to be helping him who has scars of what looks like wings being removed from her back and the younger woman who **** to the thought of Brewster while she writhes around under blankets?  The San Francisco detective i liked and am assuming that's take off of Dirty Harry and the Bullet character- but why did he kill himself?  I wanted to rip Shelley Duvall's weird eyelashes out.  The ending credits were fun.  So Brewster strangled all these people to death?  Kind of cool to see Bud Cort as a sex symbol- or was he?  Was that meant to be funny? Is Brewster the inspiration for Where's Waldo (or Wally as he's known in the UK?

I'm guessing the Astrodome was pretty big deal back in the day based on a few films that are based there- this and the second Bad News Bears film.  

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4 hours ago, Shank Asu said:

Finally watched Brewster McCloud.  Spoilers below although i feel i'm the lst person on here to see this film.

Please don't assume that. Some of us have been members on this board for decades, since it's inception. There's no problem talking about a movie others have seen/spoken of before, since TCM shows "old" movies.  Sometimes a post will rekindle new interest in a film long forgotten.

It's always good to hear about how a movie effects a viewer,  when you add your own unique opinions & impressions of it. 

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Night and the City (1992)

Updating of Jules Dassin's celebrated film noir, the action transferred from London to New York City. The story, however, with a few deviations, is largely the same, with Robert De Niro starring as small time hustler and ambulance chasing lawyer Harry Fabian. Fabian has a line of spiel a mile long and is popular, as well as laughed at, by his street peers as a constantly hustling character. But Fabian has ambitions to break out of the small time by becoming a boxing promoter. This, however, sets him up for conflict with "Boom Boom" Grossman, a major local boxing promoter with mob connections. Nobody stays healthy long if they make Boom Boom unhappy.

The 1950 version with Richard Widmark remains a widely admired noir and perhaps that has worked against this most amiable remake, shot on location in New York City, taking advantage of the sights and sounds of the streets to bring genuine atmosphere to the production. While the story is predictable, the cast is generally first rate. Jessica Lange scores well as the wife of a local bar owner with ambitions of leaving him to set up a bar of her own. She also likes Harry very much to the extent that they are carrying on an affair behind her hubby's back.

Cliff Gorman is excellent as her macho husband who can also be a bit of an intimidating jerk at times. Jack Warden does well, too, as Boom Boom's older brother, a former boxer now retired, who gets recruited by Harry into his plan of competing with his brother. But best of all, perhaps surprisingly, is comedian Alan King, who is no comedian here, bringing an icy menace to his performance as Boom Boom. The scene in which Boom Boom, after first making sure that Harry doesn't have a wire on him to record their conversation, quietly informs him that if anything happens to his brother, even a headache, he will have him killed is genuinely effective because of King's understated, deadly calm delivery. Harry, in response, for once has nothing to say.

As the irrepressible Harry Fabian, I find De Niro to be a complete joy in this film. In fact, due to the fact that he brings a light hearted energy to his perpetually optimistic hustler character, I find this to be one of the actor's most enjoyable performances. His portrayal is lacking the ominous intensity for which he is known in so many of his more famous roles and he's all the more delightful for it. Schemer that he may be, De Niro's Fabian is still an endearing low life character for whom I found myself rooting.

This film has been unfairly dismissed by the majority of critics, in my opinion, and remains a minor but engaging neo noir well worth a viewing, if only for the pleasure of seeing De Niro in fine light hearted form. Director Irwin Winkler's film is, by the way, dedicated to Dassin.

Night and the City (1992) - Jessica Lange

3 out of 4

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9 hours ago, Shank Asu said:

Finally watched Brewster McCloud.  Spoilers below although i feel i'm the lst person on here to see this film.  I enjoyed it because of all of the creative elements to it but still confused on the actual plot.  Things just kind of happen and the backstory and the filler on the plot details isn't there.  The opening was hilarious with the rich landlord behaving horribly to end up rolling down the freeway to his death, but who are these characters- Brewster and the older woman who seems to be helping him who has scars of what looks like wings being removed from her back and the younger woman who **** to the thought of Brewster while she writhes around under blankets?  The San Francisco detective i liked and am assuming that's take off of Dirty Harry and the Bullet character- but why did he kill himself?  I wanted to rip Shelley Duvall's weird eyelashes out.  The ending credits were fun.  So Brewster strangled all these people to death?  Kind of cool to see Bud Cort as a sex symbol- or was he?  Was that meant to be funny? Is Brewster the inspiration for Where's Waldo (or Wally as he's known in the UK?

I'm guessing the Astrodome was pretty big deal back in the day based on a few films that are based there- this and the second Bad News Bears film.  

It was a big deal, at least through the mid 70s, as it was the only air-conditioned domed stadium until the Superdome opened in New Orleans.    The movie was a big deal to Houston, too, at the time.   We would go to Astros games nearly every summer (though we lived 350 miles away and drove past the Texas Rangers home to do so) and the Astros programs would always have at least a page or two about the stadium beyond the typical "here's where the concessions and restrooms are".  They had photos from Brewster McCloud in there for a year or two, as they liked to brag about all the different events the Dome hosted (bullfights, concerts, conventions, Battle of the Sexes tennis, NCAA basketball finals, rodeos, circuses, soccer, etc) since it opened.  The movie just added another thing to the list.

In the 60s and 70s, Houston was the fastest growing city in the country (probably growing too fast for its own good), and it gained a lot of media exposure in both the news and film/TV, much like what Austin is experiencing today (and also growing too fast for its own good) .

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I remember reading the Houston Astrodome held a 3-day festival in November 1973 called MILLENNIUM '73.  Sponsored by the 'Divine Light Mission'. 

 

 

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2 hours ago, chaya bat woof woof said:

I've seen both versions of Night and the City (both good in their own way; however, I'm a huge Widmark and Tierney fan, so my preference is for the earlier version).  The ending of the original with Widmark is truly frightening.

I like the original very much, too. Widmark is great in that film. It's just that the De Niro remake gets neglected, to the extent that I wonder how many even know about it.

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So many people don't know about all these films (just watch Jeopardy where Mr. Roberts got dumbfounded looks on the contestants).  Now the updated version would be perfect for neo noir (would have chosen it over Blade Runner).  TomJH, do you remember Cliff Gorman (starred in groundbreaking Boys in the Band and was an antagonist to Steven Hill on L&O) starring with Richard Crenna (very under rated actor) in a series of TV mysteries (Janek, I think it was called).

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7 minutes ago, chaya bat woof woof said:

So many people don't know about all these films (just watch Jeopardy where Mr. Roberts got dumbfounded looks on the contestants).  Now the updated version would be perfect for neo noir (would have chosen it over Blade Runner).  TomJH, do you remember Cliff Gorman (starred in groundbreaking Boys in the Band and was an antagonist to Steven Hill on L&O) starring with Richard Crenna (very under rated actor) in a series of TV mysteries (Janek, I think it was called).

I have to be honest and say that I am not familiar with Cliff Gorman's work. I thought I recognized him when he first appeared in Night and the City but I had to look up his name (after being impressed by his performance) to see who he was. Looking over his bio I see that he was a real working actor from the '60s to his death in 2002, on stage, television and in the movies but never had a role that made big break through for him as a major star. Apparently he was a terrific Lenny Bruce on the stage but wasn't a big enough name to get cast in the 1974 film biography of the comic.

Cliff Gorman, Broadway's Lenny, Is Dead at 65 | Playbill

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I just finished viewing THE CONSPIRATORS. It's pretty good. I haven't seen many Hedy Lamarr films, but she is "drop dead" gorgeous. It also features many of the CASABLANCA players.  It's not really a noir. I would classify it as a WWII espionage movie. 

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7 hours ago, TomJH said:

I have to be honest and say that I am not familiar with Cliff Gorman's work. I thought I recognized him when he first appeared in Night and the City but I had to look up his name (after being impressed by his performance) to see who he was. Looking over his bio I see that he was a real working actor from the '60s to his death in 2002, on stage, television and in the movies but never had a role that made big break through for him as a major star. Apparently he was a terrific Lenny Bruce on the stage but wasn't a big enough name to get cast in the 1974 film biography of the comic.

Cliff Gorman, Broadway's Lenny, Is Dead at 65 | Playbill

He was the original Emory in the premiere production of The Boys in the Band in 1968, reprising the role in the 1970 film (which I saw in Copenhagen that year, with Danish subtitles!)

11975_1.jpg

 

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I just watched Five and Ten (1931)  on Turner On Demand.   I'm not a Marion Davies fan, but I thought she was much better in this than in later films, such as Cain and Mabel, and the chemistry with Leslie Howard was surprisingly good.    However, the film was not quite what I expected.  While  I was expecting a romantic comedy/drama, overall, the film was a depiction of the effect of wealth and workaholism and its devastating effect on the family.  The Douglass Montgomery character, Avery, seems to be the embodiment of the dysfunction on the family, and except for one incredible plot element toward the end, his scenes are excellent.  He's one of the few actors who can act with his whole body, even his shoulders, as you see by his walk and demeanor the gradual deadening of his spirit from the family dynamic.  I had seen Montgomery in the original Waterloo Bridge, and was surprised by the authenticity of his performance, but he does some nice work in this film, too.  I feel as if I'm watching two acting styles going on in the film, from observing Leslie Howard's polish to Montgomery's more natural approach, kind of like watching a blonde Montgomery Clift.  I guess he was Laurie in Little Women, which he's OK in, but I don't know what happened to him after that.

 

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Whistle Down The Wind (1961)

One of the most poignant paeans to the innocence and gullibility of childhood the movies have given us. A simple tale, with allegorical overtones, it depicts children in a Lancashire farm who discover a man in a barn and believe him to be Jesus Christ. The man, an escaped criminal charged with murder, accepts the food and gifts they bring him while, at the same time, the children try to prevent any adults from knowing of his presence, knowing what they did to the Christ the last time.

Bryan Forbes directed this British production produced by Richard Attenborough which is based on a novel by Mary Hayley Bell, wife of actor John Mills. Her daughter, Hayley, is cast in the central role of a young girl who makes the initial discovery of the man (he mutters "Jesus Christ" to himself before passing out after she asks who he is).

Filmed on location in Lancheshire, its gloomy skies and remote feeling of oppressiveness add to the film's atmosphere, with the entire cast of children, excluding young Mills, recruited from the local populace. All are totally natural in their responses, adding immeasurably to the film's effectiveness. As for Hayley, better remembered today for her Disney films made during the same period, there's not a false note to be found in her remarkably natural portrayal of innocent blind trust. She received a BAFTA nomination as best British actress for her astonishing work here. Truly a great performance.

Bernard Lee, on the verge of soon being cast as "M" in the James Bond series, plays Hayley's widower father, while Alan Bates in one of his earliest film roles is memorable as the man in the barn.

We know where the story is headed and there will be a final memorable Christ identification for the children in one particularly strong visual at the end. An unusual, affecting, lovely little film, it has not, to the best of my knowledge, been shown on TCM. This is a film that should be sought out. There is currently a lovely looking copy of Whistle Down The Wind available on You Tube. I recommend seeing it before it disappears.

Early British films: Tiger Bay (1959) and Whistle Down the Wind (1961) |  David Buckingham

3 out of 4

 

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20 minutes ago, TomJH said:

while Alan Bates had his memorable film debut as the man in the barn.

Sorry to be a pedantic bastard, but didn't The Entertainer (which is of course highly worth watching) come out a year earlier?

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3 minutes ago, Fedya said:

Sorry to be a pedantic bastard, but didn't The Entertainer (which is of course highly worth watching) come out a year earlier?

Thanks, you bas . . . er, Fedya, I'll make the correction in my review.

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On 7/28/2021 at 3:16 PM, LornaHansonForbes said:

btw, THE ACTUAL EXTERIOR VILLAGE built for the making of POPEYE in MALTA is still standing and is a tourist attraction. EDIT: THEY EVEN HAVE A MALTESE POPEYE AND OLIVE OYL.

 

Thanks for sharing!

Some of the buildings look in better shape now that they did in the movie POPEYE.   A few of them looked like a strong wind gust would knock them down.

And, of course, there was the sequence where Bluto snapped and wrecked  the Oyls' house  ---- as he sung "I'm Mean."

The Oyls' house wasn't part of the video tour of Malta's Popeye Village. I wonder if it still is standing.

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On 7/29/2021 at 8:54 AM, Moe Howard said:

"It's terribly small, tiny little country. Rhode Island could beat the crap out of it in a war. THAT'S how small it is. They recently had the whole country carpeted. This is *not* a big place."

"We understand that it's small, Arthur .  . ."

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On 7/29/2021 at 11:34 PM, speedracer5 said:

My favorite part of that Batman was when Jack Nicholson falls into the acid vat.

Batman Returns was everything for 8-year old me.  I had the VHS, all of the "collectible" giant plastic cups from McDonald's (made for great large water cups during the summer), everything. I was (and maybe still am on some level) obsessed with the scene where Michelle Pfeiffer flips out and somehow turns a leather jacket into a full leather catsuit.  I especially loved the scene where she sews her "nails" into her leather gloves. 

For me Jack Nicholson is the definitive movie Joker.  He owns every scene that he's in  after the transformation.

I also had all six of the BATMAN RETURNS "collectible" cups from McDonald's  ---- with the Frisbee Batdisc lids.

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