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3 hours ago, Shank Asu said:

Been listening to the Morbid true crime podcast's multi-part episodes on Jack the Ripper so wifey and I re-watched the Hughes Brother's From Hell (2001) starring Johnny Depp.  Think it's a fairly good story although i know the reception for it is mixed.  Seen a few Ripper films over the years and this is probably the best TBH.  Seem to be quite a few featuring Sherlock Holmes which i will watch every single one just for the sake that it features both Holmes and the Ripper, but none have been very good.  Wifey and I are probably more into the history of Jack the Ripper than what is normal and enjoyed doing the walking tours in London that go to all the actual murder sites and the Ten Bells pub which is still in operation where many of his victims were patrons at the night they were murdered.

it's stunning how many documentaries are still being produced about JACK THE RIPPER, except they're all out there trying to definitively state who he was for sure...I recently  started watching something where HH HOLMES'S grandson was trying to claim he was also JACK THE RIPPER and it was so gross i turned it off after 10 minutes. PATRICIA CORNWELL also did a LUDICROUSLY STUPID SPECIAL where she alledged it was some guy named WALTER SICKERT (I remember because she kept hissing his name)

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1 hour ago, LornaHansonForbes said:

it's stunning how many documentaries are still being produced about JACK THE RIPPER, except they're all out there trying to definitively state who he was for sure...I recently  started watching something where HH HOLMES'S grandson was trying to claim he was also JACK THE RIPPER and it was so gross i turned it off after 10 minutes. PATRICIA CORNWELL also did a LUDICROUSLY STUPID SPECIAL where she alledged it was some guy named WALTER SICKERT (I remember because she kept hissing his name)

I haven't seen either of those.  I remember a few years ago a special came out (tied to a new book) that claimed they had DNA evidence tying one of the popular suspects, Aaron Kosminski to the ripper, but i guess a lot of scientists have cast doubts on it.  Currently watching a DB Cooper docuseries of NF and its the same way with him where every so often they claim they have him identified.

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2 hours ago, Shank Asu said:

Been listening to the Morbid true crime podcast's multi-part episodes on Jack the Ripper so wifey and I re-watched the Hughes Brother's From Hell (2001) starring Johnny Depp.  Think it's a fairly good story although i know the reception for it is mixed.  Seen a few Ripper films over the years and this is probably the best TBH.  Seem to be quite a few featuring Sherlock Holmes which i will watch every single one just for the sake that it features both Holmes and the Ripper, but none have been very good.  

Except for Murder by Decree (1979), which--in addition to giving us Christopher Plummer as one of the great screen Sherlocks--goes over the basics of the "Royal theory", with less of a goofy ending as Alan Moore gave "From Hell"'s retread of the exact same clues in his original graphic novel, while claiming the Royal theory was nonsense...

Quote

I remember a few years ago a special came out (tied to a new book) that claimed they had DNA evidence tying one of the popular suspects, Aaron Kosminski to the ripper, but i guess a lot of scientists have cast doubts on it.  

I'd seen most of the 100th-anniversary Ripper theorizing in the 80's--like the TV special where US FBI profilers said "Nah, has to be your standard misogynistic serial killer!", and Scotland Yard said "Obviously a foreigner!"--and have to admit, most of the loud laughing over the Masonic theory seems to be overdoing it a bit, as the royal family clearly doesn't want to officially confirm-or-deny that there may be Victorian illegitimates out there, or a hundred wannabe Anastasias would all swarm out of the woodwork looking for a royal pension.

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"Voodoo Death" -- The New Adventures of Charlie Chan (1958)

I just watched one episode (25 minutes) of the 39-episode 1957/58 TV series, starring J. Carroll Naish as Charlie Chan and James Hong as his son.  The plot of "Voodoo Death" is fairly typical. A bunch of people are guests in a stately home in England (where this episode was shot). The host is a nasty old man. It's clear from the start that everyone hates the old man, apart from Charlie Chan and his son Barry. There is money and a legacy involved. The next morning the man is found dead. Bartu, the black servant with the Voodoo snake tattoo on his hand confesses. But he didn't really do it, he just thinks he did, because he made a Voodoo doll of the mean old man and stuck a pin through it.

The police arrive, with the usual dumb detective thinking he knows the killer, until, one by one, each of his theories is disproved by Chan. Finally Chan, with the help of the servant and a real snake, scares the killer into confessing. (Bartu sticks a live snake in the face of each of the suspects, saying it means death for the guilty. When Bartu comes to the murderer, the murderer screams "Take it away, take it away, alright, I did it!")

Charlie Chan has his usual quota of aphorisms, my favorite being, in response to a compliment: "Like aging spinster I’m getting too old to blush becomingly."

new25.jpg

Bartu and Charlie

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James Hong, born in 1929, and still working.

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46 minutes ago, LawrenceA said:

I just watched Jet Attack (1958).

MV5BYmNjN2EwNGYtMjk0Mi00ZGMzLTg3MDItMWNi

 

Don't do it. Don't even think about it.

You mean Audrey Totter as a Russian spy and jet propelled dame,  wasn't worth seeing the film?

I guess Hop Sing couldn't even save this bomb.

 

 

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2 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

I just watched Jet Attack (1958).

Don't do it. Don't even think about it.

I'd never heard of this film until the Medved Bros. made it one of their original pre-Golden Turkeys "Fifty Worst Films".

Those were simpler times.  😔

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On 8/6/2022 at 10:34 PM, Bronxgirl48 said:

It's not sex, language or violence in this movie that bothers me but what I perceive as a very shallow, almost adolescent, men's-fantasy aspect of the whole thing I find obnoxious.  I don't object to steamy thrillers (I love BODY HEAT) but this one is annoying!  Sharon Stone, meh!  Smirks and eyebrows.  No real depth imo.  

And Michael Douglas' face looks as though it's melting, sort of like Vincent Price in HOUSE OF WAX.

Vincent Price

"These chicks, they just won't leave me alone."

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I was just made aware of Ethan Hawke playing Chet Baker in 2015's BORN TO BE BLUE so I borrowed it from the library. I love Chet Baker's music, but have never gotten through the 1989 documentary film LETS GET LOST, it's just too sad. So I wasn't real excited to see this movie, knowing it was going to cover the same time period of his life-the end when he was a junkie.

BORN TO BE BLUE is dismal, there's no way around it. But it did illustrate his love for his art, his tenacity to keep on doing the only thing he knows how to do despite all the roadblocks and a little about his background. I've heard criticisms Hawke was too old to play Baker, but Chet's face was older than he was-that's what hard drugs do to you. And frankly, Hawke was right for this movie-looking pretty haggard for his age himself! His love interest was played by Carmen Ejogo who was so stunningly beautiful, she stole every scene she appeared in!

The music was great and if Hawke did his own singing, he did a great job imitating Chet Baker's cool singing style. I enjoyed the movie, especially the way it ended leaving the audience to fill in the inevitable.

Born_to_Be_Blue_poster.png

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2 hours ago, Tikisoo said:

I was just made aware of Ethan Hawke playing Chet Baker in 2015's BORN TO BE BLUE so I borrowed it from the library. I love Chet Baker's music, but have never gotten through the 1989 documentary film LETS GET LOST, it's just too sad. So I wasn't real excited to see this movie, knowing it was going to cover the same time period of his life-the end when he was a junkie.

BORN TO BE BLUE is dismal, there's no way around it. But it did illustrate his love for his art, his tenacity to keep on doing the only thing he knows how to do despite all the roadblocks and a little about his background. I've heard criticisms Hawke was too old to play Baker, but Chet's face was older than he was-that's what hard drugs do to you. And frankly, Hawke was right for this movie-looking pretty haggard for his age himself! His love interest was played by Carmen Ejogo who was so stunningly beautiful, she stole every scene she appeared in!

The music was great and if Hawke did his own singing, he did a great job imitating Chet Baker's cool singing style. I enjoyed the movie, especially the way it ended leaving the audience to fill in the inevitable.

Born_to_Be_Blue_poster.png

My gripe with Hawke was that he was in his late 40's in this film i believe, portraying events in Baker's life from his early to mid-30's, but i guess most people won't know the specifics of the story to have  it make an impact.

i did like this film.  it's sad because after seeing him struggle to play again and start to pull through and start booking big gigs again, you know what awaits him and that he's going to bail on the people who supported him and go back to the drugs.  Maybe i'm just jealous of Hawke because this is a film i would've loved to have made.

I actually need to watch this again- i can't recall if Hawke does the singing or not.

I did like that they showed his relationship with his parents and his dad's scathing comment to him about singing like a girl a making a dig about Chet's soft voice.  Chet didn't have many friends in life and really burned every bridge he had (when i stayed in the room he died in earlier this summer, there were articles framed in the room about his life and some outright called him evil and manipulative) so i thought it was good to show how his parent's treated him.

Now i really want to see this film again.

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1 hour ago, JamesJazGuitar said:

Both Stan Getz and Chet Baker had issues with drug use but could still pull off magic together even in the 80s;

 

Nice- i've got a live album they did together.  read they didn't care much for each other.

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Last night I watched Part 3 of my "Soul" trilogy, the SUMMER OF SOUL '21 a movie about a series of concerts held in Harlem in 1969. I expected this to be a simple "concert" movie but it's so much more than that.

This is not a concert movie, in fact very few full song performances are shown. I'm sure it's from "rights" issues, but was so glad to see what was included - rare footage of Sly & The Family Stone, The 5th Dimension, Gladys Knight & The Pips, Nina Simone, BB King, The Staple Singers & more.

Apparently, this Festival was held over several weekends and had "themes" like pop, gospel, ethnic, etc and they featured musicians in each genre-ALL were excellent. I was especially impressed with unfamiliar performers like the Chamber Brothers & seeing all the Staples performing together-wow! 

Along with the performances, there are interviews with performers, memories of those who attended and social commentary that really rounded out the impact of the event for those who weren't around at the time.  All I could think of as I watched this was that nothing like this could ever happen today. They had police AND Black Panther protection which I thought was brilliant, but the real reason it worked is because of the music, and respect- respect for the performers and each other.

And that was my biggest takeaway- It was emotionally moving to see the footage of those in the audience; people of all ages from older gray hairs to hip young adults to wildly dancing children - all enraptured by the music, the community event. Maybe it's from 2 years of isolation or maybe it's cold cynicism, but I just don't see people who are MOVED by ART this way anymore. You know that facial expression when a performer enraptures someone in the audience. You especially recognize it in the kids & teens in the crowd, they're not yet jaded.

I also enjoyed the expressive colors & fashion of NYC hipsters & performers in 1969. Stevie Wonder looked great in a double breasted suit with ruffled shirt & buckled shoes! Gladys Knight wore a ruffled peasant shirt, mini jumper, white hose, gold stacked mules and a huge "fall" wig! Adorable! The 5th Dimension wore orange fringed vests, those hippies! Nina Simone in African dress & conical hairdo. Sometimes, the audience outshined the stage wear. A movie likes this illustrates just how dour a society we've become-people wore COLOR in their clothes & facial expressions both.

My only complaint is a BIG one...my favorite Moms Mabley performed, but they only showed about 30 seconds of her. BOO!😡 My only other complaint is the division expressed in the dialogue of this being "for Blacks", isn't art for everybody?

If the trailer doesn't get you excited, this isn't the movie for you.

 

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On 8/9/2022 at 1:44 PM, JamesJazGuitar said:

Both Stan Getz and Chet Baker had issues with drug use

Were there jazzmen who didn't have issues with drug use?  ;)

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16 minutes ago, Fedya said:

Were there jazzmen who didn't have issues with drug use?  ;)

I know your joking but there was one very prominent one,  Dizzy Gillespie.     He was being interviewed by a national media outlet by some very unhip columnist and they asked him if,  like many others he had worked with (mainly Charlie Parker),   he used "drugs".     Dizzy said "no";    The columnist mentioned that it was known that Dizzy smoked weed.   Dizzy said something like:  "that isn't a drug,  that's an herb".      Dizzy went on to explain that this is why he was still playing;  many from his era used hard-drugs and \ or drank and those are what will get you,  not some green herb.

 

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The Cranes are Flying a Russian "import"  from 1957

 
 
After Stalin's death sparked a "thaw" in the usually tight state control of all things, including culture, in the USSR, The Cranes are Flying was made. It's a sad and moving look at how two lovers and their families are ripped apart by war.
 
Veronica and Boris, like any young lovers, are happy in their private world, are excited every time they see each other and are looking forward to getting married, with only the just-begun WWII blocking their future. 
 
Boris' family, headed by Boris' very successful surgeon father, is happy for "the kids" too, but then Boris enlists. He and Veronica pledge to wait until he gets back. Boris' brother Mark, younger, healthy and less moral than Boris (he's lightly hit on Veronica behind his brother's back), has a draft exemption and no desire to enlist. 
 
As the war intensifies, Veronica's parent's apartment is destroyed in an air raid, killing her entire family. Boris' Dad then kindly offers to let Veronica move in with his family, who already see her as a daughter-in-law, as the expectation is that she and Boris will marry after the war.
 
The war continues with its death and destruction as Boris lives through hell at the front, while Veronica struggles with the loss of her family and no word from Boris owing to unreliable wartime mail. 
 
During another nighttime air raid, when Veronica and Mark are alone in the apartment and amidst shattering glass and deafening bombs, Veronica, haltingly but willingly, submits to Mark's advances. The next thing we know, Mark and Veronica are married and the family is surprised, but some of them try to take it in stride. 
 
The family is then moved to Siberia so that the father can run a large army hospital. Once there, we see that Veronica's marriage is failing as Mark tries a bit to make it work, but Veronica can't even fake it as she realizes she made a horrible mistake in not waiting for Boris. Mark, of course, then begins stepping out on Veronica.
 
The family itself is split as Boris' Dad - an impressively kind and smart man - understands what drove Veronica to make her mistake (I'm not sure the viewer agrees), but others think she's just a willful ****. Boris' Dad even thinks that it is his son, Mark, who is most at fault as he should never have tempted Veronica while she was pledged to his brother.  
 
The climax builds as the marriage begins to crumble, while Boris is badly wounded at the front. Will he come back? If he does, what will he think of Veronica's and his brother's actions? 
 
The Cranes are Flying works because it is real. Young lovers, a long war-time separation, a brotherly betrayal and a loneliness-inspired indiscretion have, throughout time, often made a sadly common equation for lives and families being destroyed.
 
The Cranes are Flying also works because the characters are complexly human. Veronica would probably have been a good wife to Boris if she didn't fail one extreme test when she was at the end of her tether. Boris' Dad, the quiet anchor of the movie, is an incredibly thoughtful man who sees and understands the moral grey in life.  
 
The Cranes are Flying, finally, is a fascinating window into, what was, the usually closed USSR. During a relatively brief period of limited cultural freedom, a movie like The Cranes Are Flying was able to be made with, amazingly, some restrained mockery of earlier Soviet propaganda. 
 
It also showed that, despite the State's brutal efforts, religion wasn't dead in the hearts of the people as we see Boris' grandmother silently make the sign of the cross when her grandson goes off to war. 
 
Shot in black and white and on a modest, but not shoe-string budget, The Cranes are Flying poignantly tells a timeless story of passion, family, individual failings and betrayal. It's an engaging love story tucked inside a war movie from an unlikely time and place. It deserves the accolades it won (at Cannes and other notable film festivals) upon its world release. 
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tumblr_m089lc2FkY1qbu1qvo1_500.gifv

On the evening before Capitolfest officially begins, the Capitol Theater opens the dealers room, offers a mixer for fest attendees, and programs a film likely to be well-known and popular with the audience. This year's crowd-pleaser was Footlight Parade (1933). Which only happens to be my favorite movie of all time. It features James Cagney doing not just comedy, but song and dance; museum-quality Busby Berkeley numbers; and Joan Blondell slinging some of the hottest Pre-code dialogue Hollywood could put on celluloid. ("Outside, countess. As long as they've got sidewalks YOU'VE got a job.")

The story is rooted in higher-end movie theaters' historic practice of programming prologues (live-action entertainment, maybe or maybe not thematically related to the feature film). Kent (Cagney), as a stage producer put out of business by the advent of the talkies, creates a company that creates, casts, and stages ready-made prologues, ready to be dispatched to contracting theater chains throughout the U.S. Business is good, until a competing firm seems to be getting inside information on Kent's forthcoming productions.

All this is pretext for the three brand-new prologues that conclude the film. Each is a spectacle, designed to show what Berkeley could do given sufficiently generous budgets, and the liberty to ignore the limitations of the proscenium stage and exploit to the max editing and the most extreme possibilities of camera perspectives.

Tikisoo has said she will have a table in the Capitolfest dealers room. Will anyone else from this forum be there?

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Chungking Express. 
Two emotional and sometimes quirky love stories that  anyone can relate to.


No reservations recommending this one. It made me smile.


Except for those 70's kung-fu movies, this was my first Chinese film.
 

Subtitles never bother me at all, so no issue there whatsoever.

Cinematography was beautiful and unusual. 

Lead and supporting actors were excellent  at delivering the uncomplicated dialogue.

The leads also happened to be very beautiful/handsome people, which didn't hurt. 😉

Great pop music choices for the soundtrack also. I want every song for my personal play list. 

I see on here that some folks are very uncomfortable will subtitles. Trust me, this film is worth the inconvenience. 

 

 

 

 

D8151974-5712-43B6-9A2B-00EC39C28A9D.jpeg

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10 hours ago, Grumpytoad said:

Chungking Express. 
Two emotional and sometimes quirky love stories that  anyone can relate to.


No reservations recommending this one. It made me smile.


Except for those 70's kung-fu movies, this was my first Chinese film.
 

Subtitles never bother me at all, so no issue there whatsoever.

Cinematography was beautiful and unusual. 

Lead and supporting actors were excellent  at delivering the uncomplicated dialogue.

The leads also happened to be very beautiful/handsome people, which didn't hurt. 😉

Great pop music choices for the soundtrack also. I want every song for my personal play list. 

I see on here that some folks are very uncomfortable will subtitles. Trust me, this film is worth the inconvenience. 

 

 

 

 

D8151974-5712-43B6-9A2B-00EC39C28A9D.jpeg

This has been in my queue over on the Criterion channel for forever.  Need to try to get it.  The other film that i've had in my queue for a long time that always gets mentioned is Fanny and Alexander which i couldn't get through, but i know i need to watch both.

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On 8/8/2022 at 7:46 PM, Swithin said:

"Voodoo Death" -- The New Adventures of Charlie Chan (1958)

I just watched one episode (25 minutes) of the 39-episode 1957/58 TV series, starring J. Carroll Naish as Charlie Chan and James Hong as his son.  The plot of "Voodoo Death" is fairly typical. A bunch of people are guests in a stately home in England (where this episode was shot). The host is a nasty old man. It's clear from the start that everyone hates the old man, apart from Charlie Chan and his son Barry. There is money and a legacy involved. The next morning the man is found dead. Bartu, the black servant with the Voodoo snake tattoo on his hand confesses. But he didn't really do it, he just thinks he did, because he made a Voodoo doll of the mean old man and stuck a pin through it.

The police arrive, with the usual dumb detective thinking he knows the killer, until, one by one, each of his theories is disproved by Chan. Finally Chan, with the help of the servant and a real snake, scares the killer into confessing. (Bartu sticks a live snake in the face of each of the suspects, saying it means death for the guilty. When Bartu comes to the murderer, the murderer screams "Take it away, take it away, alright, I did it!")

Charlie Chan has his usual quota of aphorisms, my favorite being, in response to a compliment: "Like aging spinster I’m getting too old to blush becomingly."

new25.jpg

Bartu and Charlie

7(153).jpg

James Hong, born in 1929, and still working.

James Hong played Hop Sing's cousin on Bonanza a couple times and played a maitre d in an  episode of Seinfeld in a Chinese restaurant called Hop Sing's. Another reference to Bonanza in that episode is when he receives a call for George and calls out Cartwright instead of Costanza. And, yes, he's still working. Amazing.

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On 8/8/2022 at 8:23 PM, LawrenceA said:

I just watched Jet Attack (1958).

MV5BYmNjN2EwNGYtMjk0Mi00ZGMzLTg3MDItMWNi

 

Don't do it. Don't even think about it.

Thanks for the warning. I was seriously considering it because the poster is so fascinating. 

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On 8/12/2022 at 12:19 PM, Shank Asu said:

This has been in my queue over on the Criterion channel for forever.  Need to try to get it.  The other film that I've had in my queue for a long time that always gets mentioned is Fanny and Alexander which i couldn't get through, but i know i need to watch both.

May you enjoy both eventually!

Have a long movie queue myself, realizing I may never finish it.

I stumbled into the middle of Bergman's The Seventh Seal a long time ago. Was SO over my head I quit within five minutes. Recently I've put a bunch of his films into my queue, including Fanny and Alexander. Plan is to watch them in order of release. Fortunately, the earliest one I  have available is a romance, not a drama. Figure with his stuff, I better ease in.😉

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On 8/11/2022 at 10:36 PM, Polly of the Precodes said:

This year's crowd-pleaser was Footlight Parade (1933). Which only happens to be my favorite movie of all time. 

All this is pretext for the three brand-new prologues that conclude the film. Each is a spectacle, designed to show what Berkeley could do given sufficiently generous budgets, and the liberty to ignore the limitations of the proscenium stage and exploit to the max editing and the most extreme possibilities of camera perspectives.

Tikisoo has said she will have a table in the Capitolfest dealers room. 

You're not kidding about "crowd pleaser" We screened this as our season closer and most of our audience was unfamiliar with it. Not only were they captivated by Cagney & Blondell's performance, but each musical number brought more chuckles than the previous & by the end...huge guffaws! The reaction prompted me to quickly craft necklaces of the overhead scenes...which btw are sold out.

tumblr_mmvkxl65BQ1rs1xsxo2_500.gif

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