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8 minutes ago, LornaHansonForbes said:

THAT'S a fair point, although LEE'S character is living in the present and the brother of the girl who goes missing is clearly British (he sounds like CARY GRANT) HIS SISTER (who goes missing) is obviously Swedish or from one of the "finger countries" as is her boyfriend who sounds like DOLPH LUNDGREN and probably does the weakest job suppressing his accent.

Venetia Stevenson (the sister who goes missing) is the daughter of film director Robert Stevenson and the actress Anna Lee.  She was born in England, but moved with her parents to the U.S. when she was one year old. Betta St. John, who plays the other young woman, is American.  As for Christopher Lee, I'm not clear whether or not his character was alive in colonial times, but a teacher of that subject at that school, he would have a heightened, affected, probably British-tinged accent.

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5 minutes ago, Swithin said:

Venetia Stevenson (the sister who goes missing) is the daughter of film director Robert Stevenson and the actress Anna Lee.  She was born in England, but moved with her parents to the U.S. when she was one year old.

thank you. THIS information GENUINELY ASTOUNDS ME. she sounds VERY very NORDIC.

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8 minutes ago, LornaHansonForbes said:

THIS GENUINELY ASTOUNDS ME. she sounds VERY NORDIC. The guy who plays her boyfriend has GOT to be from Eastern Europe though, no?

I'm not familiar with that actor (Tom Naylor). He seems to have faded away shortly after City of the Dead. I suspect he was English. I have the DVD, which has a lot of great extras:

1.  The U.K. version, which is uncut: 2 minutes longer than the U.S. version;

2.  Feature length commentary by Christopher Lee;

3.  45-minute interview with Christopher Lee;

4. Interview with Venetia Stevenson;

5. Interview and commentary by director John Moxey;

6. Theatrical trailer;

7. Photos

8. Cast bios.

 

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5 minutes ago, Swithin said:

I'm not familiar with that actor (Tom Naylor). He seems to have faded away shortly after City of the Dead. I suspect he was English. I have the DVD, which has a lot of great extras:

2.  Feature length commentary by Christopher Lee;

Bet this is interesting. I watched his and ROY WARD BAKER'S full length commentary of SCARS OF DRACULA and it was amusing to listen to LEE (he is, I dare say, a leetle full of himself- but then again, aren't all actors?)

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2 minutes ago, LornaHansonForbes said:

Bet this is interesting. I watched his and ROY WARD BAKER'S full length commentary of SCARS OF DRACULA and it was amusing to listen to LEE (he is, I dare say, a leetle full of himself- but then again, aren't all actors?)

I  think they probably picked Lee for the DVD extras because, although he wasn't well known when City of the Dead was made, he had become an iconic horror movie figure by the time the DVD was released. The same year Lee made City of the Dead he had a supporting role in a film called Playgirl After Dark (original UK title: Too Hot too Handle), which starred Jayne Mansfield.  The film is a sort of noirish gangster film, with Christopher Lee as a kind of emcee at a tawdry London club. The whole film is on YouTube. The credits open with the catchy title song, "Too Hot too Handle." 

"Hot, hot, much too hot...

The lady is much -- too hot to handle;

The lady does not -- act like a prude..."

Too+Hot+To+Handle+016.jpg

 

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20 minutes ago, LornaHansonForbes said:

Bet this is interesting. I watched his and ROY WARD BAKER'S full length commentary of SCARS OF DRACULA and it was amusing to listen to LEE (he is, I dare say, a leetle full of himself- but then again, aren't all actors?)

It's pretty good, Lee spends a lot of time bad mouthing Hammer Films company though.

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2 hours ago, Det Jim McLeod said:

It's pretty good, Lee spends a lot of time bad mouthing Hammer Films company though.

The Scars of Dracula is one of the better Hammer films featuring a Universal character. In general, I'm not a fan of the Hammer films that try to recreate the old Universal characters.  The Hammer films are just not as good, they're a bit stodgy. The Hammer films I do like are unrelated to those recreations of Universal monsters, like the Quatermass films, The Reptile, Curse of the Werewolf, and others. Of course Hammer made some fine non-horror films over the decades.

Dr. Jekyll and Sister Hyde does have some choice moments!

Many of the  best of British horror films were not made by Hammer. City of the Dead is not a Hammer film; nor are Witchfinder General or The Blood on Satan's Claw.

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3 hours ago, LornaHansonForbes said:

 HIS SISTER (who goes missing) is obviously Swedish or from one of the "finger countries"

 

3 hours ago, Swithin said:

Venetia Stevenson (the sister who goes missing) is the daughter of film director Robert Stevenson and the actress Anna Lee.  She was born in England, but moved with her parents to the U.S. when she was one year old. 

In the interview on the disc, Stevenson discusses moving to England and getting roles as the token American girl. They, at least, thought she sounded American.

It sounds like the bonus features on the DVD were carried over to the Blu-ray, Swithin. 

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Gift of Gab Poster

Gift Of Gab (1934) Youtube 4/10

A fast talking con man (Edmund Lowe) becomes a radio announcer.

I saw this because it was the only film with Boris Karloff and Bela Lugosi together that I had not viewed before. Though they don't appear in the same scene together and for barely a minute each. Their scene is a quick spoof of mystery programs. Lugosi is hiding in a closet holding a gun and has one line "What time is it?". Karloff appears in top hat and cape as a mysterious Phantom, he says a few  things and laughs wickedly while making a quick exit. The whole movie is basically just an excuse to allow some radio acts to do their thing. There is comedy routines but no one I was familiar with and they were not funny. Besides Karloff and Lugosi, there are a few more people who became more well known later. Ethel Waters sings a song, Andy Devine has a bit as a waiter and Sterling (Winnie The Pooh) Holloway is a sound effects man. It is also interesting to see the real Ruth Etting, who I only knew from Doris Day's portrayal in Love Me Or Leave Me. So it's an interesting curiosity, but not a good film.

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13 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

Spartacus  (1960) Dir: Stanley Kurbrick*   -  One of my favorites; certainly my favorite historical epic. The restored Blu-ray looks fantastic. (10/10)

source.gif

One of the main reasons I like this epic so much is that the Dalton Trumbo script, rather than trying to find inspiration from selections of the Bible, which is the case with most epics of this nature, instead concentrates upon injustice and respect for the individual in an autocratic society of rigid class structure. It's an epic based on history and, no matter how much it may fictionalize that history, it dares to have a downbeat (but memorable) ending.

I recommend to any fans of this film that they read I Am Spartacus, Kirk Douglas' breezy, informative account about the trials that were involved in making this film. What adds to the amazement of this entertaining book is that it was written by the actor when he was 95!

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37b76d2413b64f6d319fe0f3b86e3d2a.jpg?ito

Sanshiro Sugata  (1943) Dir: Akira Kurosawa - Sanshiro Sugata (Susumu Fujita) is a callow youth who learns self-discipline and proper morals as he also becomes a master at the new martial art of judo. Also featuring Yukiko Todoroki, Takashi Shimura, and Ryunosuke Tsukigata.

Kurosawa's first feature directing job has quite a few noteworthy moments, despite the restrictions in place during wartime, and the relatively primitive nature of Japanese filmmaking (their motion picture techniques seemed about ten years behind those in the US and elsewhere, until after the war). The major judo match scenes are well handled, and pack more emotional punch than is usual for that sort of thing. The sequence where Fujita meets love interest Todoroki on the steps of a temple are very well done. And it's always nice to see Shimura, who would go on to be a Kurosawa regular. Unfortunately, the very strict censorship board at the time excised nearly 15 minutes of the original film, and those scenes have seemingly been lost forever.   (7/10)

Source: Criterion DVD

 

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13 hours ago, TomJH said:

I recommend to any fans of this film that they read I Am Spartacus, Kirk Douglas's breezy, informative account about the trials that were involved in making this film.

Yup. I requested this from my library way back when Lavenderblue recommended it here. Received the DVD of SPARTACUS,  but the book is still on hold. Wah.

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5 minutes ago, TikiSoo said:

Yup. I requested this from my library way back when Lavenderblue recommended it here. Received the DVD of SPARTACUS,  but the book is still on hold. Wah.

I bought the book because of lavenderblue's recommendation myself. I'm glad I did. At the time Amazon had it for a not too bad price.

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18 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

Spartacus  (1960) Dir: Stanley Kurbrick*   -  One of my favorites; certainly my favorite historical epic. The restored Blu-ray looks fantastic. (10/10)

 

Maybe a year or so ago, I started watching SPARTACUS for the first time and was into it- ESPECIALLY THE JOHN GAVIN IN THE BATHS SCENE WHICH JUST BY ITSELF SHOULD HAVE BEEN NOMINATED FOR BEST PICTURE- anyhow, I HAD to go somewhere and assumed it would show on streaming BUT IT DID NOT. Same thing ahppened with VANISHING POINT, and I still REALLY want to know how THAT ONE ENDED.

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Goldfinger (1964)

I hadn't watched any of the Bond films for a good number of years so felt that if I was just going to view one this was the most appropriate title for me. After all, it features, for me, the greatest of the Bond actors at the peak of his charm (with a hint of danger) and physicality, the most desirable of all Bond leading ladies in the delectable presence of Honor Blackman, two of the most memorable villains in the series, with Gert Frobe (his English dubbed) as the title character and Harold Sakata as Oddjob and, arguably, the most iconic of all Bond title songs, as sung by Shirley Bassey at her most powerful and glorious.

877c5c58ad7115a4e54a90f213631b78.jpg

Guy Hamilton sprightly directs this film, with three international settings, England, Switzerland and the United States and its Fort Knox climax. Sakata, a former wrestler and all round athlete, had his hands burned in his classic final confrontation scene with Bond in which he was electrocuted. Sakata's hands were really burning as his held them to the electric grid, not releasing them because Hamilton hadn't yelled "cut" (the director had no idea the actor was in pain).

source.gif

Goldfinger has a number of iconic moments for the series. Bond strapped to the metal table as a laser's red burning beam is inching closer and closer to his one of his favourite body parts. "Do you expect me to talk?" Sean Connery's Bond yells out. "No, Mr. Bond," Goldfinger replies, "I expect you to die!"

A-348639-1255819288.jpeg.jpg

There's the tussle and judo flipping scene in the hay between Bond and P u s s y Galore (Blackman). There is also that indelible moment, underscored by John Barry's classic musical score, in which Bond, regaining consciousness hours after having been knocked out by Oddjob, first sees the gold painted torso of Shirley Eaton lying naked in bed. Once you've seen that image you don't forget it.

300px-Shirley_Eaton_as_Jill_Masterson_in

There is also, of course, for car enthusiasts, the wonders of Bond's gadget laden aston martin. Among other things this sleek four wheeled wonder has machine guns that can protrude out front, an oil slick splurting out back for anyone chasing the vehicle and, of course, a breakaway roof and ejector seat for any unwelcomed passenger in the car.

Goldfinger holds up as great ridiculous suspenseful, sexy fun which doesn't make the mistake of taking itself seriously. I find the Bond films to be an uneven collection, with Bond actors of varying degrees of success. But this film stands apart from the rest for me (with apologies to From Russia With Love and, to a lesser degree, The Spy Who Loved Me). Goldfinger holds up as the most fun Bond ride of them all.

cc0bb3fd-e674-4015-a5b8-dd05b6b0d1fa.jpg

3 out of 4

 

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most-beautiful-1944-japanese-world-war-i

The Most Beautiful  (1944) Dir: Akira Kurosawa - Wartime propaganda about women working in a lens factory. As the war effort demands that the factory turn out more and more product at a faster rate, the workers make sacrifices to get the job done.

Kurosawa's second film was made during a dark time for Japan, as the war had really begun to take its toll, and the outcome began to look inevitable. The film censorship board would only allow the most obviously propaganda-type stories to be told, and so Kurosawa (who was never a strong supporter of the war) begrudgingly agreed to make this. Personally, I'd consider this his worst film, with the thinnest of plots, and the shallowest of characters. However, Kurosawa himself looked more favorably on the finished product in retrospect, as he ended up marrying the film's leading lady, Yoko Yaguchi. Their marriage lasted 40 years, until her death in 1985. Kurosawa regular Takashi Shimura shows up as the factory chief.    (5/10)

Source: Criterion DVD

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2 minutes ago, LawrenceA said:

most-beautiful-1944-japanese-world-war-i

The Most Beautiful  (1944) Dir: Akira Kurosawa - Wartime propaganda about women working in a lens factory.

FOR PERISCOPES? BINOCULARS? GLASSES?

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1 minute ago, LornaHansonForbes said:

FOR PERISCOPES? BINOCULARS? GLASSES?

For various military purposes, as well. They specifically mention rifle scopes and bomber sights.

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13 minutes ago, TomJH said:

Goldfinger (1964)

I hadn't watched any of the Bond films for a good number of years so felt that if I was just going to view one this was the most appropriate title for me. After all, it features, for me, the greatest of the Bond actors at the peak of his charm (with a hint of danger) and physicality, the most desirable of all Bond leading ladies in the delectable presence of Honor Blackman, two of the most memorable villains in the series, with Gert Frobe (his English dubbed) as the title character and Harold Sakata as Oddjob and, arguably, the most iconic of all Bond title songs, as sung by Shirley Bassey at her most powerful and glorious.

877c5c58ad7115a4e54a90f213631b78.jpg

Guy Hamilton sprightly directs this film, with three international settings, England, Switzerland and the United States and its Fort Knox climax. Sakata, a former wrestler and all round athlete, had his hands burned in his classic final confrontation scene with Bond in which he was electrocuted. Sakata's hands were really burning as his held them to the electric grid, not releasing them because Hamilton hadn't yelled "cut" (the director had no idea the actor was in pain).

source.gif

Goldfinger has a number of iconic moments for the series. Bond strapped to the metal table as a laser's red burning beam is inching closer and closer to his one of his favourite body parts. "Do you expect me to talk?" Sean Connery's Bond yells out. "No, Mr. Bond," Goldfinger replies, "I expect you to die!"

A-348639-1255819288.jpeg.jpg

There's the tussle and judo flipping scene in the hay between Bond and P u s s y Galore (Blackman). There is also that indelible moment, underscored by John Barry's classic musical score, in which Bond, regaining consciousness hours after having been knocked out by Oddjob, first sees the gold painted torso of Shirley Eaton lying naked in bed. Once you've seen that image you don't forget it.

300px-Shirley_Eaton_as_Jill_Masterson_in

There is also, of course, for car enthusiasts, the wonders of Bond's gadget laden aston martin. Among other things this sleek four wheeled wonder has machine guns that can protrude out front, an oil slick splurting out back for anyone chasing the vehicle and, of course, a breakaway roof and ejector seat for any unwelcomed passenger in the car.

Goldfinger holds up as great ridiculous suspenseful, sexy fun which doesn't make the mistake of taking itself seriously. I find the Bond films to be an uneven collection, with Bond actors of varying degrees of success. But this film stands apart from the rest for me (with apologies to From Russia With Love and, to a lesser degree, The Spy Who Loved Me). Goldfinger holds up as the most fun Bond ride of them all.

cc0bb3fd-e674-4015-a5b8-dd05b6b0d1fa.jpg

3 out of 4

 

Robert shaw was another strong villian

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I watched another ancient VHS tape the other night . . .

I hadn't seen EVERY WHICH WAY BUT LOOSE (1978) in quite a while so I fished out the GIANT 'WCI' box release from 1980.  It wasn't called "Warner Home Video" back in '80; it was 'Warner Communications, Inc.'  The last time I watched the movie was on this tape so I knew it would play quite all right.  Like a joyful ▬ brick ▬ going in to my VCR!  :P 

One thing about EVERY WHICH WAY BUT LOOSE is that it made a lot of money at the box office despite universal panning by movie critics.  I think the movie is mildly subversive.  Compare it to its conventional sequel ANY WHICH WAY YOU CAN.  

Think about it:  In 'LOOSE' Clint doesn't get the girl.  She turns on him and he walks away with a bloody face.  Didn't he know they'd had their time?  Then he throws the big fight with Tank Murdock when he sees this is all Tank has going for him at his age and so Clint loses his money and ends up face-first on the ground.  And the movie ends simply with Clint going back home in his old truck with Clyde and Orville and Echo.  LESSON LEARNED:  Hey, we all hit some roadblocks but Life still ain't too bad.    :)

In ANY WHICH WAY YOU CAN it's thoroughly conventional:  Clint gets the girl then fights the Mob to get her back and finally wins THE BIG FIGHT against William Smith.  I think the sequel is a better-made movie but not a more entertaining movie.  The plot, minimal as it might be, is certainly more focused than in "Every Which Way But Loose" -- which has even less plot.          

And remember:  Old tapes don't die.  They just want to be ♦useful♦.  

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