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Attended to a few things filmwise today. Finished up the Dumbo remake started the other day, and I admire the fact that it went its own way rather than being a slavishly faithful, pallid copy of the original. Certainly the original is better (and shorter) but I appreciated the new take. I started another recent blockbuster at home, Ready Player One, and so far, I don't know if its because it is a Spielberg film or because of the 80s music or pop culture nods, but its surprisingly a blast so far. Got a real giddy feeling from it that's rare to find from recent blockbusters for me.

Currently watching away with 1932's Central Park, which I'm watching because of Joan Blondell.

And I saw a rental DVD (via mail) of Truffaut's 1978 drama The Green Room, a very moving chamber piece, with strong work from Truffaut himself as a death-obsessed writer and from Nathalie Baye as the young woman who secretly loves him. Cried a bit at the end, always a good sign.

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2 hours ago, EricJ said:

An 90's NBC TV-movie, where they basically played up the standard "New folks move to sinister small-town with a secret" plot with Jackson's twist, and the big message of our heroes trying to stop it.

...Well, you did ask.

Sorry, I missed this post and then later unintentionally upstaged it by looking it up for myself. I was not ignoring your comment. Thanks.

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Snake Woman's Curse  (1968)  -  7/10

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Japanese supernatural horror from director Nobuo Nakagawa. In the late 19th century, a woman (Chiaki Tsukoka) and her daughter (Yukiko Kuwahara) are severely mistreated while working as indentured servants at a cruel landowner's estate. They reach out from the spirit world to exact revenge. Also featuring Seizaburo Kawazu, Kunio Murai, Akemi Negishi, Yukie Kagawa, Shingo Yamashiro, and cameos by Ko Nishimura, Junzaburo Ban, and Tetsuro Tamba. This is highly polished horror fare, with nice widescreen color cinematography. Director Nakagawa, whose previous films include the excellent The Ghost of Yotsuya (1959) and Jigoku (1960), imbues the film with an old-fashioned "spooky" atmosphere that is fun rather than terrifying, although there are some good atmospheric moments, too. The final shot is very good.

Source: Synapse DVD

snakewoman02.jpg

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"House of the Damned" - Maury Dexter - 1963 -

starring Ronald Foster and Merry Anders and Richard Crane -

Low-budget horror film from 20th Century Fox that is basically a hackneyed script -

but the film has three things going for it -

an extremely atmospheric set (Greystone Mansion in Beverly Hills) -

the properly perplexed performances of its' stars -

and a highly unexpected ending that will send shivers down your spine -

house-of-the-damned-movie-poster-1963-bw

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A Sweet Sickness  (1968)  -  5/10

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Exploitation flick from producer David F. Friedman. Dee (Vincene Wallace) is a stripper in L.A. who gets into a lot of unsavory situations, from being assaulted by a neighbor, to being kidnapped and dosed with LSD. Also featuring Art T. Romans, Vicki Carbe, Victor Izay, and Poochie Norton. This is fairly standard very-low-budget grindhouse skin-flick fare, although I liked a bit more than most thanks to the acid-rock score, the funny drug-freak-out sequence, and the chipper newsreel-style narration. The girl scout selling cookies in the picture above was the only still from the movie that I could find that would pass Moderation.

Source: Something Weird DVD

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Samaritan Zatoichi  (1968)  -  7/10

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19th entry in the long-running Japanese series. Ichi (Shintaro Katsu), the wandering blind masseur and master swordsman, is tricked into killing a man, so he decides to look after the dead man's sister (Yoshiko Mita), who is being pursued by yakuza members who want to force her to work at their brothel. Ichi himself is being tracked by a mysterious samurai (Makoto Sato) who seems intent on killing him. Also featuring Takuya Fujioka, Chocho Miyako, Akira Shimizu, and Ko Nishimura. This was another enjoyable outing, with a bit more humor and some terrifically staged fight scenes in the film's last third. 

Source: Criterion Blu ray

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15 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

Run, Man, Run  (1968)  -  7/10

Tomas-Milian-as-Cuchillo-in-Run-Man-Run-

Spaghetti western from writer-director Sergio Sollima, the last part in his political western trilogy, preceded by The Big Gundown (1966) and Face to Face (1967). Tomas Milian stars as Cuchillo (the same character that he played in the first film), a Mexican petty crook who's good with a knife. When helps a revolutionary poet escape from prison, Cuchillo finds himself the target of bandits, pro-government forces, pro-revolution forces, and a mean gunfighter (Donald O'Brien), who are all looking for a cache of gold hidden by the poet. Also featuring Linda Veras, Marco Guglielmi, Jose Torres, Luciano Rossi, Nello Pazzafini, Federico Boido, Chelo Alonso, and John Ireland. I wasn't aware that "Zapata westerns" were their own recognized sub-genre, but this is one them. They all feature the Mexican revolution as some aspect of the story or setting. Milian is good as usual, even singing the opening theme song, while O'Brien makes for a weak substitute in what should have been a role played by Lee Van Cleef or Jack Palance. There's a lot of interesting imagery (a man is "crucified" on a windmill, others are dragged between two horses in an unusual fashion), and the score, by an uncredited Ennio Morricone, is excellent.

Source: Blue Underground DVD

Yea there are quite a few Zapata Westerns to check out.

The American Mexican, Euro and Spaghetti Westerns to view to get a comprehensive overlook of the Zapata's are the following:

Viva Villa (1934) Wallace Beery Fay Wray & Leo Carillo, I remember this one Berry is a great actor, allways enjoyed him this was the first major Hollywood treatment of the Mex Rev.

Viva Zapata (1952) Marlon Brando & Anthony Quinn (gave the subgenre its name)

If "Viva Villa" (1934)  was the blueprint for the "fun" Zapata Western, then the same could be said that "Viva Zapata" was the outline of the serious Zapata Western. So in these two films we have a ying/yang treatment of the MexRev. 

The Treasure Of Pancho Villa (1956) Rory Calhoun, Shelley Winters, and Gilbert Roland

Bandido (1956) Dir Richard Fliesher, Robert Mitchum, Gilbert Roland, Ursula Thiess, this is the first Hollywood treatment in color and that addition really adds to the genre up to this point where the previous films were shot in B&W. 

They Came To Cordura (1959) Dir. by Richard Rossen, Starring: Gary Cooper, Rita Hayworth, Van Heflin, Tab Hunter, Richard Conte, Dick York, Robert Keith, it interestingly depicts one of the last US cavalry charges when the US uniforms where khaki instead of Kersey Blue.

Así era Pancho Villa (1957) The disembodied head of Mexico's best-known rebel Poncho Villa narrates several short stories from his own life. Cast Pedro Armendáriz as Pancho Villa, María Elena Marqués as Jesusita de Chihuahua, and Carlos López Moctezuma as Fierro. Dir: Ismael Rodríquez.

Pancho Villa y la Valentina (1960) The many sides of Pancho Villa, one of Mexico's best-known rebels, are revealed. Cast: Pedro Armendáriz, Elsa Aquirre, Carlos López Moctezuma. Dir: Ismael Rodríquez.

Cuando ¡Viva Villa..! es la muerte (1960) Stories of the life of Pancho Villa are recounted by teachers, prisoners, farm hands and other small town residents.Cast: Pedro Armendáriz, Elsa Aquirre, Carlos López Moctezuma. Dir: Ismael Rodríquez. C-92 mins

The Taste of Violence (1961) Director: Robert Hossein Stars: Robert Hossein, Giovanna Ralli, Mario Adorf 

The Professionals (1966) Director: Richard Brooks starring Burt Lancaster, Lee Marvin, Robert Ryan, Woody Strode, Jack Palance, Claudia Cardinale, and Ralph Bellamy starring. 

A Bullet for the General (1967) Quién sabe? (original title) Directed by Damiano Damiani starring  Gian Maria Volontè, Klaus Kinski, Martine Beswick, Lou Castel. 

The Mercenary (1968) ( (Il mercenario) Directed by Sergio Corbucci starring Franco Nero, Tony Musante, Jack Palance, Giovanna Ralli, and Eduardo Fajardo

Villa Rides (1968) (Get a lode of this cast!) Yul Brynner, Robert Mitchum, Charles Bronson, John Ireland, Jill Ireland, Herbot Lom, Frank Wolff, Frenando Rey, and with the screen play by Sam Peckinpah, and Chinatown''s Robert Towne.

100 Rifles (1969) Jim Brown, Bert Reynolds, Raquel Welch, Frenando Lamas, Eric Braden, and Aldo Sambrell.

Tepepa (1969) Director: Giulio Petroni with Stars: Tomas Milian, Orson Welles, John Steiner.

The Wild Bunch (1969) directed by Sam Peckinpah with William Holden, Ernest Borgnine, Robert Ryan, Edmond O'Brien, Warren Oates, Jaime Sánchez, Ben Johnson, Emilio Fernández, Strother Martin, and L.Q. Jones.

Companeros (1970) Vamos a matar, compañeros (original title) Directed by Sergio Corbucci starring Franco Nero, Tomas Milian, Jack Palance, Fernando Rey, and Iris Berben

Duck, You Sucker! (Giù la testa) Directed by Sergio Leone starring  Rod Steiger, James Coburn, Mari Monti, and Romolo Valli.

Pancho Villa (1972) Director: Eugenio Martín starring Telly Savalas, Clint Walker, Chuck Connors and Ann Francis

What Am I Doing in the Middle of a Revolution? (1972) Directed by Sergio Corbucci and starring Vittorio Gassman, Paolo Villaggio, Riccardo Garrone, and Eduardo Fajardo.

And Starring Pancho Villa as Himself (2003) directed by Bruce Beresford, Stars: Antonio Banderas, Eion Bailey, Alan Arkin.  

There may be a few more...

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6 hours ago, laffite said:

I checked the Wiki page and apparently have been a couple. Well sorta, "loosely based" etc. Check out the article:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Lottery

//

Just checked it out... Interesting how none of the adaptations seemed to make their way into mainstream media. I might do some research and see if anyone has one of those adaptations, even if it's just audio. 

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What Am I Doing in the Middle of a Revolution? (1972) Che c'entriamo noi con la rivoluzione? (original title)

Che c'entriamo noi con la rivoluzione? (1972)

Third Zapata Western in Sergio Corbucci's Revolution Trilogy, stars Vittorio Gassman, Paolo Villaggio, Riccardo Garrone and staple Corbucci actor Eduardo Fajardo.

This one is a full on Comedy Western with quite a bit of slap stick humor. Watchable 6/10.

Can be found online in a crappy multi-generational print.

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16 hours ago, rayban said:

I think that the girl is meant to be an enigma.

That's for sure. Nothing in the script or performance to make her interesting.

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Age of Consent  (1969)  -  6/10

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Drama from director Michael Powell, based on the book by Norman Lindsay. James Mason stars as Bradley Morahan, a famous Australian painter who has been abroad for many years. He decides to return to Australia to recharge his batteries, and sets up a studio in a dilapidated shack on the northern coast. He meets young local girl Cora (Helen Mirren) who scavenges the fauna in the area to earn money to leave. Her alcoholic guardian (Neva Carr-Glynn) is an abusive witch, and when Cora begins modeling for Bradley, there's trouble. Also featuring Jack MacGowran, Frank Thring, Andonia Katsaros, Michael Boddy, Harold Hopkins, and Peggy Cass. I wasn't as enamored of this as others seem to be. Mirren is beautiful, of course, and she turns in a very believable performance. Mason is a bit more unsteady, and his attempt at an Aussie accent seems to only appear on every fourth word or so. MacGowran is irritating in his broadly comic scenes. It also didn't help that I thought all of Mason's "great" artwork looked like garbage. 

Source: Sony DVD

helen-mirren-age-of-consent-1969.jpg

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Body Fever aka Super Cool  (1969)  -  4/10

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Ray Dennis Steckler, the auteur behind such classics as The Incredibly Strange Creatures That Stopped Living and Became Mixed-Up Zombies and Rat Pfink a Boo Boo, writes, produces, directs and stars in this private detective movie. He's Charles Smith, P.I., and he's hired to find missing girl Carrie Erskine (Carolyn Brandt), which brings him into conflict with drug dealers and other assorted lowlifes. With Bernard Fein, Gary Kent, Brett Pearson, Herb Robins, Coleman Francis, and Ron Haydock as Fritz the Photographer. This is cheap and home-made looking, as usual, although some of the acting is okay. Steckler, using his acting screen name of Cash Flagg, looks like the love child of Joey Bishop and Adam Sandler, or maybe Pete Townshend and Bob "Gilligan" Denver. Featuring such hard-boiled dialogue as this: "Now what was that room number again? Someday I'm gonna have to learn to write these things down. Someday I'm gonna have to learn how to write." 

Source: Media Blasters/Guilty Pleasures DVD

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P.S.: Coleman Francis, the actor/writer/director of such bad-movie classics as Red Zone CubaThe Skydivers, and The Beast of Yucca Flats, makes a brief appearance in the film. I read this on IMDb in the trivia section for this movie:

"Ray Dennis Steckler had just completed filming the last scene, when walking to his car, he saw Coleman Francis drunk and lying in the gutter. Steckler felt so bad about Francis's condition that, even though he had finished work on the movie, he offered Francis a role in it. Steckler added some scenes just to give Francis some work and some badly needed cash, which he gave Francis in advance. Steckler and his crew were astonished when Francis showed up for work the next day sober, clean-shaven and nicely attired. This was a bit of a problem since Steckler had wanted him to play the part of a disheveled bum. Francis had used the advance pay to buy a decent second-hand suit, a shave and a haircut."

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2 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

Age of Consent  (1969)  -  6/10

220px-Age_of_Consent_English_film_poster

Drama from director Michael Powell, based on the book by Norman Lindsay. James Mason stars as Bradley Morahan, a famous Australian painter who has been abroad for many years. He decides to return to Australia to recharge his batteries, and sets up a studio in a dilapidated shack on the northern coast. He meets young local girl Cora (Helen Mirren) who scavenges the fauna in the area to earn money to leave. Her alcoholic guardian (Neva Carr-Glynn) is an abusive witch, and when Cora begins modeling for Bradley, there's trouble. Also featuring Jack MacGowran, Frank Thring, Andonia Katsaros, Michael Boddy, Harold Hopkins, and Peggy Cass. I wasn't as enamored of this as others seem to be. Mirren is beautiful, of course, and she turns in a very believable performance. Mason is a bit more unsteady, and his attempt at an Aussie accent seems to only appear on every fourth word or so. MacGowran is irritating in his broadly comic scenes. It also didn't help that I thought all of Mason's "great" artwork looked like garbage. 

Source: Sony DVD

helen-mirren-age-of-consent-1969.jpg

It's a nice fantasy, helps to forget all today's BS for a while. For me I could watch it over and over with no problems.

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Charro!  (1969)  -  6/10

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Elvis Presley stars in this western, playing reformed outlaw Jess Wade. His old gang, led by Victor French, implicate him in the theft of a golden cannon stolen from Mexico. As he tries to clear his name, the gang start threatening a small town with the cannon's fury. Also featuring Ina Balin, Solomon Sturges, Barbara Werle, Lynn Kellogg, James B. Sikking, Garry Walberg, and Paul Brinegar. Elvis plays it serious, with no songs sung and a beard to make him look rougher. He's not bad, but it's a shame that it's in service to such a weak script. This was last Elvis movie that I had not seen.

Source: Warner DVD

elvischarro2.jpg

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5 hours ago, cigarjoe said:

Quoting LawrenceA - I wasn't as enamored of this as others seem to be.

Did you watch the BoobOvision version? Or a safe for work censored version? Inquiring minds want to know?

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De Sade  (1969)  -  4/10

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Biopic from AIP, writer Richard Matheson, and director Cy Endfield (with an uncredited assist from Roger Corman). Keir Dullea stars 18th century French nobleman who wrote scandalous works, got into various troubles, and ended up in an asylum. Also featuring Senta Berger, Lilli Palmer, John Huston, Anna Massey, Sonja Ziemann, Christiane Kruger, Uta Levka, and Herbert Wessbach. Poorly written (surprisingly, since I usually like Matheson's stuff), dreadfully directed with an eye toward late-60's excess, and blandly acted by Dullea.

Source: MGM DVD

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18 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

Age of Consent  (1969)  -  6/10

220px-Age_of_Consent_English_film_poster

 

You were pretty tough on this one, Lawrence. I think Age of Consent is definitely worth a look, perhaps even two. Mason is fun to watch as the frustrated artist in search of inspiration on a Pacific isle, while a young Helen Mirren is quite (unexpectedly, for me) physically spectacular (delivering a fine performance in the process as a kind of "nature girl"). While you found Jack MaGowran irritating I found him quite amusing in his own eccentric fashion. (His character, I admit, would be a pain to know). The scene in which he is seduced by the lonely, randy middle aged woman on the island is a comic hoot, followed by his declaration when he sees Mason afterward that he had just been raped. Finally, the film's colour photography of exotic locales makes the film a constant visual pleasure.

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6 minutes ago, TomJH said:

You were pretty tough on this one, Lawrence. I think Age of Consent is definitely worth a look, perhaps even two. Mason is fun to watch as the frustrated artist in search of inspiration on a Pacific isle, while a young Helen Mirren is quite (unexpectedly, for me) physically spectacular (delivering a fine performance in the process as a kind of "nature girl"). While you found Jack MaGowran irritating I found him quite amusing in his own eccentric fashion. (His character, I admit, would be a pain to know). The scene in which he is seduced by the lonely, randy middle aged woman on the island in a comic hoot, followed by his declaration when he sees Mason afterward that he had just been raped. Finally, the film's colour photography of exotic locales makes the film a constant visual pleasure.

I didn't care much for it, beyond Mirren, and not just because she was naked a lot. The drunken guardian of Mirren's character was thoroughly repugnant and annoying with her screeching, which I know was the point, but that didn't make it any more enjoyable to listen to or watch. I was also turned off a bit by the violence towards the randy neighbor's dog, which was meant to be funny, but I found it anything but.

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2 minutes ago, LawrenceA said:

I didn't care much for it, beyond Mirren, and not just because she was naked a lot. The drunken guardian of Mirren's character was thoroughly repugnant and annoying with her screeching, which I know was the point, but that didn't make it any more enjoyable to listen to or watch. I was also turned off a bit by the violence towards the randy neighbor's dog, which was meant to be funny, but I found it anything but.

Yeh, Mirren's guardian was quite the harridan witch. I don't recall violence towards any dog in the film, which is probably just as well.

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26 minutes ago, TomJH said:

...while a young Helen Mirren is quite (unexpectedly, for me) physically spectacular ...

What a great description ... so very sober, considering the subject ...

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Goyokin  (1969)  -  7/10

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Japanese samurai drama with Tatsuya Nakadai as a rogue samurai who abandoned his clan after they committed an atrocity. He teams with the sole survivor (Ruriko Asaoka) of said atrocity, as well as another opportunistic ronin (Kunie Tanaka), to seek revenge against the clan retainer (Tetsuro Tamba) behind the wrongdoing. Director Hideo Gosha (Three Outlaw SamuraiSword of the Beast) delivers another solid samurai action/drama, with Nakadai turning in another of his expert haunted performances. The elaborate finale, set in a snowy seaside village, is very memorable.

Source: Media Blasters/Tokyo Shock DVD

 

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