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I rented RIFFTRAX THE PHANTOM CREEPS, which was a 2015 audiocommentary done by the guys behind sci-fi era MST of the hour-and-a-half long 1949 edited re-release of the original 1939  serial starring BELA LUGOSI and ONE HOMELY ROBOT. 

Whew. it took a lot of energy to explain that.

The track was funny, but what I came away with, as a huge fan of BELA LUGOSI is a curiosity for JUST WHAT EXACTLY HAPPENED TO BELA IN THE YEARS 1937 AND 1938- because it is off-putting just how OLD he looked in this movie as opposed to how he looked three years earlier in THE INVISIBLE RAY

1936 BELA:

belalugosi13.jpg

1940 BELA:

(I used this image from THE DEVIL BAT because I could not find any good ones of him from THE PHANTOM CREEPS, but I think you will agree, the difference is NOTICEABLE. )

MV5BZjIwNTdlZDMtZDQxNi00ODE4LWJhNjktNThh

WERE THE MAKE-UP GUYS AT UNIVERSAL THAT GOOD, OR DID BELA SEE SOME HARD **** IN THOSE THREE YEARS?

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4 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

Morphine is a helluva drug.

Yea,  I was just reading up on jazz pianist Bill Evans since AllHollowDay has been posting some of his albums.     Evans is one of the most functional heroin addicts in music history.

Still he died at 51,   but he left a recording legacy that is top notch.   Here is what he had to say:

Evans said, "You don't understand. It's like death and transfiguration. Every day you wake in pain like death and then you go out and score, and that is transfiguration. Each day becomes all of life in microcosm."

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Bacon Grabbers Poster

Bacon Grabbers (1929) Youtube 6/10

Laurel and Hardy are process servers for the Sheriff's office and and try serve a summons and repossess a radio.

This a funny silent short (though it was also released in talkie form). There is good support from Edgar Kennedy as the deadbeat who owes payments on his radio. There are many funny scenes of Stan and Ollie trying to get the summons to him and then try to get into the house by ladder. Jean Harlow has an early role as Kennedy's wife. 

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5 minutes ago, LiamCasey said:

Edgar Kennedy and Jean Harlow as husband and wife? 😲

Yea,  that does have an odd ring to it!    There is Kennedy with the duo but from another movie ,  likely Night Owl (since he doesn't play a cop that loves bacon)

image.jpeg.06d60d55039b021c44b2b5cd40479112.jpeg

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The Last Man on Earth (1964)

The Last Man on Earth Poster

 

Pretty prophetic about a virus killing most of the worlds pop. Seen it before but obviously has a bit more significance  now.   Vincent Price says he's immune because he got bit by a bat no less. 7/10 
Free streaming on Amazon Prime.

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The Old Man and the Sea (1958).

Spencer Tracy recreates Ernest Hemingway's overlong novella.  There's not much to the novella, and although the movie is competently made, I think any attempt to film the material is going to be slooooooow because of the nature of the material.

6/10

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13 hours ago, cigarjoe said:

The Last Man on Earth (1964) Pretty prophetic about a virus killing most of the worlds pop. Seen it before but obviously has a bit more significance  now.   Vincent Price says he's immune because he got bit by a bat no less. 7/10 
Free streaming on Amazon Prime.

GONNA SLATHER MYSELF IN DEAD MOSQUITOS AND LAY NAKED ON THE ROOF TONIGHT.

(Not because of this, it's what I do every Monday.)

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19 hours ago, jamesjazzguitar said:

Yea,  I was just reading up on jazz pianist Bill Evans since AllHollowDay has been posting some of his albums.     Evans is one of the most functional heroin addicts in music history.

Still he died at 51,   but he left a recording legacy that is top notch.   Here is what he had to say:

Evans said, "You don't understand. It's like death and transfiguration. Every day you wake in pain like death and then you go out and score, and that is transfiguration. Each day becomes all of life in microcosm."

As one who once lived with a chemical dependence I can assure you Evans was singing the anthem of the nation known as "Fool's Paradise".  

Sepiatone

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Double Whoopee Poster

Double Whoopee (1929) Youtube 6/10

Laurel and Hardy have just been hired as footman and doorman in a swanky New York hotel and cause chaos.

Another L&H silent short, I am trying to catch up on ones I haven't seen. Like Bacon Grabbers, this one has a brief appearance by Jean Harlow. She plays a rich dish who Stan accidentally rips her skirt off when he closes a car door on it. This short has it's moments but not one of the best for the team. Stan is a lot more aggressive than I was used to seeing him. he engages in some eye poking and shin kicking with Ollie and a few others. 

 

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Just finished ACROSS THE PACIFIC. As a Bogart fan, of course I enjoyed watching it again. I just love it when he dons the trench coat and the fedora. I thought both he and Greenstreet were both as good as they usually are in these films. I basically see two flaws in the story line.  I get that the Dan Morton character , who is Alberta Marlowe's father, is an alcoholic and Lorenz has exploited that to set up his operation on his plantation. However, having him come out, obviously really drunk; was not handled well and Alberta didn't seem too upset that he was killed during the shootout when Leland escaped.  The second flaw is while I think Alberta Marlowe (Mary Astor) is certainly attractive, she's not "the girl you dream about when you're nineteen".  In fact with all due respect to our own Ms. Wonderly, I've never thought of Mary Astor as gorgeous.She is very pretty and I know she was a great actress with many great movies to her credit. I just don't think of her in the same light as some of the other actresses of the era. It's just my opinion and I don't mean to offend anyone.

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Last night I watched The Invisible Woman (1940). I've seen it many times and never tire of watching it. The number of stars in this little movie amazes me.

  • Virginia Bruce
  • John Barrymore
  • John Howard
  • Charlie Ruggles
  • Oskar Homolka
  • Edward Brophy
  • Donald MacBride
  • Margaret Hamilton
  • Shemp Howard
  • Charles Lane
  • Mary Gordon
  • Thurston Hall

It's nice to see an 'Invisible' movie without the subject going mad. Great fun! (Charlie Ruggles, as always, is one of the best.)

MV5BMWMzMzM3NTItYzVjZi00MWViLTliMjktZmU2

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1 hour ago, Rudy's Girl said:

Last night I watched The Invisible Woman (1940). I've seen it many times and never tire of watching it. The number of stars in this little movie amazes me.

  • Virginia Bruce
  • John Barrymore
  • John Howard
  • Charlie Ruggles
  • Oskar Homolka
  • Edward Brophy
  • Donald MacBride
  • Margaret Hamilton
  • Shemp Howard
  • Charles Lane
  • Mary Gordon
  • Thurston Hall

It's nice to see an 'Invisible' movie without the subject going mad. Great fun! (Charlie Ruggles, as always, is one of the best.)

 

Yea,  that is an odd cast for a 71 minute film.     Maria Montez was also in this (she gets one line).  

María Montez: The Movie | YUYU

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Wonder Bar (1934)

Bizarre, tasteless Warner Brothers combination of musical and melodrama, complete with Busby Berkeley production numbers. This film has something in it to offend almost everybody yet, at the same time, remains a fascinating illustration of pre code amorality at either its worst or most audacious, depending upon one's point of view.

Slickly produced and photographed, this studio musical, rather than having an American backstage setting, as were previous Berkeley efforts (42nd Street, Footlight Parade, etc.) is set in a Parisian night club run by Al Wonder, played by a typically gregarious Al Jolson. The big cast includes Dolores Del Rio and Ricardo Cortez as the night club's tempestuous dancing duo star attraction, Kay Francis as a stuffy banker's wife having an affair with Cortez who wants a necklace back that she gave him, Dick Powell as the crooner/band leader in love with Del Rio, Robert Barrat as a bankrupt determined to have one last fling at the club before doing himself in, along with, for laughs, bumbling American tourist hicks Guy Kibbee and Hugh Herbert showing up with their wives, played by Ruth Donnelly and Louise Fazenda.

The film is perhaps best remembered for the spectacular racially stereotyped tastelessness of a 12 minute blackface number with Jolson, "Going To Heaven On A Mule," complete with fried chicken and oversized watermelon rinds. But there is also a whip cracking "gaucho" dance number with sado masochistic overtones, a murder, as well as the exploitation of a suicidal person to help cover up that murder (and getting away with it!). Also played for laughs are a couple of men dancing with one another with Jolson quipping, "Boys will be boys."

wonder-bar-13.jpg?w=584

The film would have gotten away with none of this had it been released a few months later when the production code was being more stringently enforced.

Amidst all this activity, however, the film is fitfully amusing. Speaking for myself a little of Al Jolson goes a long way and there's an awful lot of Jolson is this film. However, Dolores Del Rio arguably never looked more glamourous, Richardo Cortez was always a good cad, Kay Francis moodily pleads with Cortez while her obtuse husband sees little, and Louise Fazenda has fun as a rube flirting with a gigolo while drunken hubby Hugh Herbert makes eyes at a call girl.

wonder-bar-14.jpg

2.5 out of 4

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1 hour ago, TomJH said:

Wonder Bar (1934)

Bizarre, tasteless Warner Brothers combination of musical and melodrama, complete with Busby Berkeley production numbers. This film has something in it to offend almost everybody yet, at the same time, remains a fascinating illustration of pre code amorality at either its worst or most audacious, depending upon one's point of view.

Slickly produced and photographed, this studio musical, rather than having an American backstage setting, as were previous Berkeley efforts (42nd Street, Footlight Parade, etc.) is set in a Parisian night club run by Al Wonder, played by a typically gregarious Al Jolson. The big cast includes Dolores Del Rio and Ricardo Cortez as the night club's tempestuous dancing duo star attraction, Kay Francis as a stuffy banker's wife having an affair with Cortez who wants a necklace back that she gave him, Dick Powell as the crooner/band leader in love with Del Rio, Robert Barrat as a bankrupt determined to have one last fling at the club before doing himself in, along with, for laughs, bumbling American tourist hicks Guy Kibbee and Hugh Herbert showing up with their wives, played by Ruth Donnelly and Louise Fazenda.

The film is perhaps best remembered for the spectacular racially stereotyped tastelessness of a 12 minute blackface number with Jolson, "Going To Heaven On A Mule," complete with fried chicken and oversized watermelon rinds. But there is also a whip cracking "gaucho" dance number with sado masochistic overtones, a murder, as well as the exploitation of a suicidal person to help cover up that murder (and getting away with it!). Also played for laughs are a couple of men dancing with one another with Jolson quipping, "Boys will be boys."

wonder-bar-13.jpg?w=584

The film would have gotten away with none of this had it been released a few months later when the production code was being more stringently enforced.

Amidst all this activity, however, the film is fitfully amusing. Speaking for myself a little of Al Jolson goes a long way and there's an awful lot of Jolson is this film. However, Dolores Del Rio arguably never looked more glamourous, Richardo Cortez was always a good cad, Kay Francis moodily pleads with Cortez while her obtuse husband sees little, and Louise Fazenda has fun as a rube flirting with a gigolo while drunken hubby Hugh Herbert makes eyes at a call girl.

wonder-bar-14.jpg

2.5 out of 4

Where did you see this?

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16 minutes ago, Swithin said:

Where did you see this?

It was from an old DVD recording I made off TCM years ago. I'm not certain how frequently they show Wonder Bar anymore since it's so politically incorrect.

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@TomJH:  Have you ever seen the 1934 pre-Code release MURDER AT THE VANITIES?  You might like it if you've not seen it. 

Last night I watched a movie I'd not seen before:  BADGE 373 (1973).  I recently bought a 1986 Paramount VHS release and set about to watching.  Kind of a peculiar sort of movie; the film is much better seen than described.  I'd give it an 'Average' -or- 2 stars out of 4.  The movie was filmed entirely in and around NYC according to the end credits. 

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6 hours ago, Mr. Gorman said:

@TomJH:  Have you ever seen the 1934 pre-Code release MURDER AT THE VANITIES?  You might like it if you've not seen it. 

 

Yes, I have seen Murder at the Vanities though any memories of the film are vague. Again, a combination of pre code musical and murder, isn't it? I have a DVD of it buried somewhere so I may dig it out. Thanks for the reminder. It would have to go a long way, though, to rival the spectacular tastelessness of the jaw dropping "happy" ending of Wonder Bar.

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Touchez Pas Au Grisbi (1954)  from me a 9.75/10 but see below...

Touchez Pas au Grisbi Poster

To quote Moorman " Another French masterpiece.  A solid 10 out of 10. Jean Gabin is fantastic.  I really loved this film.  The moral code, the friendship, everything about this film was top notch and on point.  The character studies and just everything, again, I say this was a 10 out of 10."

Un Témoin Dans La Ville (1959) - 10/10

Un témoin dans la ville Poster

Directed by Edouard Molinaro starring Lino Ventura.

Pierre Verdier kills his mistress Jeanne Ancelin by throwing her off a train. He claims that it was an accident. Her husband, Ancelin (Ventura), gets revenge on Verdier who has money enough to get acquitted by justice. Ancelin waits for him at his his house and hangs him making it look like suicide.

He leaves the place but is seen by a cab driver that Verdier had called, Now  But unfortunately for him, Lambert, a taxi driver has witnessed him. Ancelin has no option but to bump off the driver. This was a nice surprise. Lots of cat and mouse type action on the night streets of Paris. A great Film Noir 10/10.
 

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36 minutes ago, cigarjoe said:

Touchez Pas Au Grisbi (1954)  

Touchez Pas au Grisbi Poster

Thanks-I just requested this from my library. They have 12 titles with Jean Gabin! I suspended my requests until 5/1 hoping the library's open by then.

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55 minutes ago, TikiSoo said:

Thanks-I just requested this from my library. They have 12 titles with Jean Gabin! I suspended my requests until 5/1 hoping the library's open by then.

THEY'RE not doing curbside service?

(not sarcastic- genuinely, it's what my local library is doing)

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1 hour ago, TikiSoo said:

Thanks-I just requested this from my library. They have 12 titles with Jean Gabin! I suspended my requests until 5/1 hoping the library's open by then.

Can you stream films?  Can you cast from computer or laptop to your TV?

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