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5 hours ago, YourManGodfrey said:

The Mouse That Roared (1959)

As one of the great military strategists of his time, I was happy to see that a film was dedicated to Field Marshal Tully Bascomb. This biopic focuses exclusively on Bascomb’s late 1950s war service that made him into a worldwide celebrity. If you’re looking for a more full picture of his life, I would skip this one. However, if you’re looking for a great, blood and guts war film that makes Saving Private Ryan look like Singing in the Rain, look no further than The Mouse That Roared, which features noted actor Peter Sellers in the role of The Field Marshal. And the Prime Minister. And the Duchess.

Amazon, from wherever it gets its movies, currently has the distinctly minor Richard Lester followup The Mouse On the Moon (1963), which Sellers avoided, to be replaced by Bernard Cribbins, Ron Moody and Margaret Rutherford, respectively:  https://www.amazon.com/Mouse-Moon-Margaret-Rutherford/dp/B009510HH6/

mouse+on+the+moon+6.jpg

In which the country now wants to pretend it has a fake "space program" to get a charity bidding-war going from US and Russian loyalty, receives a secondhand rocket from the Soviets, and discovers that the local wine turns out to be powerful rocket fuel.  Not great (as few non-Beatles Lester comedies are), but still pleasantly whimsical.

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3 hours ago, EricJ said:

Amazon, from wherever it gets its movies, currently has the distinctly minor Richard Lester followup The Mouse On the Moon (1963), which Sellers avoided, to be replaced by Bernard Cribbins, Ron Moody and Margaret Rutherford, respectively:  https://www.amazon.com/Mouse-Moon-Margaret-Rutherford/dp/B009510HH6/

mouse+on+the+moon+6.jpg

In which the country now wants to pretend it has a fake "space program" to get a charity bidding-war going from US and Russian loyalty, receives a secondhand rocket from the Soviets, and discovers that the local wine turns out to be powerful rocket fuel.  Not great (as few non-Beatles Lester comedies are), but still pleasantly whimsical.

I think they should have emphasized the World Series more. They could have at least shown a few highlights.

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I watched the French documentary and then the two films and loved them.      Nice to see something different.

AND,   so far,   no complaints from newbies about the showing of foreign films or we miss Robert Osborne!

 

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To all the recent British films that suggest that Britons of the past were actually very tolerant and understanding of interracial affairs--see Darkest Hour, the remake of Murder on the Orient Express, several episodes of Father Brown, etc.--Sapphire (1959) issues a Cher-like slap and a "Snap out of it!" in its portrayal of the ugly realities of the times. Sapphire is a young woman whose murdered body is found on Hampstead Heath. About twenty minutes into the film, her brother arrives to identify her body, and to the shock of the policemen investigating the case, he is a coloured man (to use the common terminology of the time, and yes, Dargo, there is a superfluous "u" in it). Did Sapphire's fiance and his working-class family know she wasn't white, and if so, when did they know it? What about the coloured men she had dated at the jazz club?

Sapphire uses the interesting angle that Secrets and Lies would use thirty years later, that some of the black characters are further up the social scale than the white characters. Janet Green's screenplay is taut and not too preachy, with an intriguing mystery and some complex characters. Nigel Patrick is the leading investigator. Paul Massie, whom I had only seen in the excellent and little-known Orders To Kill, is the fiance. Yvonne Mitchell (his sister), Bernard Miles (his father), and Olga Lindo (his mother) all give top-notch performances. The murdered girl is a complex and contradictory character, and I'm not sure that all the parts fit together. However, this story held my interest from beginning to end.

Sapphire is now available in the four-DVD Basil Dearden's London Underground, which also includes Victim, The League of Gentlemen, and All Night Long. With Saraband for Dead Lovers and Khartoum also to his credit, Dearden is clearly a better director than he has been given credit for.

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Rosemary's Baby Poster

Rosemary's Baby (1968) DVD 10/10

A young wife is pregnant and suspicious of her new neighbors.

I have seen this countless times and it is still brilliant in every way. One of my top ten films of all time.

Mia Farrow is excellent in the lead, she is in every scene and we see everything from her point of view. You really feel for her every step of the way.

Roman Polanski's direction is great, the tension builds and builds and explodes with the still shocking ending. The writing is very faithful to the book, it is nearly a word for word, scene for scene recreation. One striking scene is the dream sequence where a drugged Rosemary finds herself on a yacht with actors portraying JFK and his wife Jackie, I did not realize that is who they were supposed to be until I read the novel.

The musical score by Christopher Komeda is one of the finest in film history. The haunting and eerie lullaby (sung by Mia Farrow) sets the mood. There more menacing music when Rosemary first starts having pains.

Ruth Gordon gives a funny, Oscar winning performance as the nosy neighbor Minnie. But stage veteran Sidney Blackmer is equally effective as her husband. He is quietly menacing even when he is being kindly, his booming voice at the end is chilling. Maurice Evans provides a great counter point as Hutch the only nice older person in the film. Elisha Cook Jr plays the apartment manager, he was made up to have missing fingers on his hand, though it is hard to see in the film.

As a native New Yorker, it is nice to see the city in it's 1960s era. Radio City Music Hall is featured in a Christmas scene where Rosemary is waiting to see Hutch. The Music Hall is still around though the Time and Life Bldg lobby has changed a lot. There is a great scene where Rosemary walks into oncoming traffic across Fifth Avenue. The Dakota apartments still look imposing to this day.

If you have never seen this film, when you do you will know the influence it has had on other films, horror or not. If you have seen it, see it again and again you will find something new each time.

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I watched it about 6 weeks ago - for, I think, about the 11th time.

It's a perfectly constructed movie - faithfully based on the novel and every performance is flawless.

I couldn't agree with your 10/10 assessment more than I do.

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I watched Arrowsmith (1931) the other evening  on TCM On Demand.  It was very well done,  not typical John Ford, and I thought Ronald Colman was fine in it.  However, not the best movie to watch during a pandemic....  I had trouble sleeping that night.

 

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23 hours ago, Det Jim McLeod said:

As a native New Yorker, it is nice to see the city in it's 1960s era.

https://www.scoutingny.com/halloween-in-ny-rosemarys-baby/

Scouting NY has several really great screen shots & their contemporary comparison shots. Looks like other sites have stolen/posted his pics. Look at his site for other great NYC filming locations & little known, hidden oddities.

The more classic movies I watch set in NY, the more nostalgia I feel-didn't realize so much had changed! I just rewatched THE WIZ and marveled at the huge scene of 400 dancers set in the World Trade Center's open park.

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1 hour ago, TikiSoo said:

Scouting NY has several really great screen shots & their contemporary comparison shots. Looks like other sites have stolen/posted his pics. Look at his site for other great NYC filming locations & little known, hidden oddities.

It was interesting to see these. The book store in the movie was Gotham Book Mart, a great old store with an iconic sign "Wise Men Fish Here", it right smack in the middle of the Diamond District on 47th street. It was a great place to browse and I bought some good movie books here. Unfortunately it closed over a decade ago. It's sad to see so many old bookstores closing. With the the pandemic all have been closed, I hope the few that are left can survive this.

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Bless the Beasts & Children Poster

Bless The Beasts & Children (1971) VHS tape 9/10

Six misfits boys at a summer camp try to save a buffalo herd from slaughter.

 

One of my favorite movies set in summer time. It was well directed by Stanley Kramer, probably the last great movie he made. The film is told in flashbacks. We first see the boys sneaking out on horseback to release the buffalo from a gated pen. In the flashbacks we get to see each individual kid's story. The only "name" among them was Billy Mumy (Will Robinson from Lost In Space).  The story may seem very serious but there is quite a bit of humor in it, some of it hilarious, though the ending is tragic. I love the music in this as well. The Carpenters sing the gentle title song (it was nominated for an Oscar). Another song was "Down The Line" a nice early 70s singer/songwriter type tune, it would have fit in nicely in Midnight Cowboy since the singer reminded me of Harry Nilsson. Mumy also contributed a good song "It's A Beautiful Day". And one music piece would become the theme to the daytime soap The Young And The Restless.

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Wasn't the theme to Y&R also Nadia's theme (the gymnast).

Billy Mummy is in an original TZ episode based on the short story It's a Good Life (something like that).  He is terrifying (and he was in a follow-up years later when Spielberg revived the series).

I watched Bachelor Mother and The More the Merrier on TCM, plus, locally, couldn't watch Jeopardy due to almost two hours of coverage on a potential tornado south of the City.  After TCM, watched the last bit of Runaway Bride.  I like stations that run movies without numerous commercial breaks.

Karen Carpenter - became one of the first public faces of anorexia/eating disorders (relate personally).

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12 minutes ago, chaya bat woof woof said:

Billy Mummy is in an original TZ episode based on the short story It's a Good Life (something like that).  He is terrifying (and he was in a follow-up years later when Spielberg revived the series).

I saw that sequel. In it he had a daughter that was even more powerful than he was.

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9 hours ago, TikiSoo said:

The more classic movies I watch set in NY, the more nostalgia I feel-didn't realize so much had changed! I just rewatched THE WIZ and marveled at the huge scene of 400 dancers set in the World Trade Center's open park.

I'm reminded of the cast of Godspell on the still under construction towers.

 

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On 7/16/2020 at 8:24 AM, Det Jim McLeod said:

Rosemary's Baby Poster

Rosemary's Baby (1968) DVD 10/10

A young wife is pregnant and suspicious of her new neighbors.

I have seen this countless times and it is still brilliant in every way. One of my top ten films of all time.

Mia Farrow is excellent in the lead, she is in every scene and we see everything from her point of view. You really feel for her every step of the way.

Roman Polanski's direction is great, the tension builds and builds and explodes with the still shocking ending. The writing is very faithful to the book, it is nearly a word for word, scene for scene recreation. One striking scene is the dream sequence where a drugged Rosemary finds herself on a yacht with actors portraying JFK and his wife Jackie, I did not realize that is who they were supposed to be until I read the novel.

The musical score by Christopher Komeda is one of the finest in film history. The haunting and eerie lullaby (sung by Mia Farrow) sets the mood. There more menacing music when Rosemary first starts having pains.

Ruth Gordon gives a funny, Oscar winning performance as the nosy neighbor Minnie. But stage veteran Sidney Blackmer is equally effective as her husband. He is quietly menacing even when he is being kindly, his booming voice at the end is chilling. Maurice Evans provides a great counter point as Hutch the only nice older person in the film. Elisha Cook Jr plays the apartment manager, he was made up to have missing fingers on his hand, though it is hard to see in the film.

As a native New Yorker, it is nice to see the city in it's 1960s era. Radio City Music Hall is featured in a Christmas scene where Rosemary is waiting to see Hutch. The Music Hall is still around though the Time and Life Bldg lobby has changed a lot. There is a great scene where Rosemary walks into oncoming traffic across Fifth Avenue. The Dakota apartments still look imposing to this day.

If you have never seen this film, when you do you will know the influence it has had on other films, horror or not. If you have seen it, see it again and again you will find something new each time.

Check out the building where this was filmed. An amazing story. 

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HsECNyT.jpg

Belladonna of Sadness (1973)

This is listed by IMDb.com as animation but it is not what comes to most people's minds when they hear the term. It is mostly static images with voice-over narration. I have read that it was meant to mimic old Japanese scrolls or to evoke the feeling of sitting on your mother's lap and looking at the pictures in an over-sized book while she read to you. 

This is not a story any sane mother would read to her little girl. It is based on Satanism and Witchcraft by Jules Michelet published in 1862. It is a paean to the mythos that a woman's sexuality can dethrone gods, beguile the devil and invoke powers far beyond the ken of mortal men. That is certainly true in my case but it must not be for all women or we would have shaped the world so that we would not have so much trouble finding dresses and slacks with real pockets. 

It is the story of a peasant girl who is subjected to the right of her lord to take her on her wedding night before she beds with her new husband. The violation becomes central to her being and brings forth a tiny spirit which promises her revenge if she will but allow her hatred to grow within her until she becomes a great power. This comes to pass to the point that she rivals her lord in power and prestige. Her denunciation as a witch is inevitable. The revelation that the spirit is the devil is not truly a surprise. Her downfall is a given. It also lacks any sense of drama. It in some ways gives the feeling that they were on the cusp of a spectacular denouement but then realized that the budget was spent and they would not be paid if they worked past five o'clock to finish the movie.

There are no parts of the movie with twenty-four-frames-per-second type of animation but there are segments which show progressive action at a much lower rate. These are nearly all done with a very heavy hand and little or no artistry. The most important depicts her ordeal with her lord. I have no doubt that it was done crudely as a suggestion of brutality but it truly has no compelling trait other than clearly demonstrating how grossly offensive the artists could be using only basic shapes. A depiction of the 0rgy which she incites in the woods might have been meant to be a psychedelic exploration of Freudian ideation but it is so incredibly amateurish in both concept and execution as to defy belief. The other action scenes are not nearly as grotesque but they mostly do detract from the ambiance.

The majority of the movie is truly quite beautiful and the technique is both charming and effective. The story is simple and easy to follow but this does not prevent one from being drawn into it.

I tried to research if there was a specific name for this type of animation. I failed to find any term but I did discover that this movie has been shown on TCM. A search of the forum did not reveal any review or synopsis but several people did laud its appearance on the schedule.

I find it difficult to rank this movie in any traditional manner. I place it above: Cleopatra (1970) by the same director because I have never been able to force myself to watch that in its entirety. I believe that the most that I can say is that I am very glad I watched it but I doubt I will wish to watch it again in the near future. 

I will recommend it to any person who wishes to watch an unusually beautiful and beautifully-told movie but only on assurance that they are able to overlook the few grotesque, crude and grotesquely crude scenes.
 

I watched this movie on: Tubi which is a free streaming service.

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Blondie Plays Cupid Poster

Blondie Plays Cupid (1940) Movies! TV Network 6/10

Blondie tries to help a young couple elope.

This is #7 in the series and it's still funny, though this one takes a while to get to the main plot. It begins with a very funny slapstick scene where Daisy is chased by a bunch on neighborhood dogs through the house. The movie takes place around 4th of July time, Blondie tries to prevent Dagwood from using fireworks. Baby Dumpling is getting noticeably bigger, but still has great comic timing. There are more laughs as Blondie and Dagwood take the family on a train trip, character actor Charles Lane plays a grouchy train conductor. A very boyish looking Glenn Ford has one of his earliest roles, as the young groom. The bride's shotgun toting father opposes the marriage. One of the funniest scenes is when Baby Dumpling takes a car on a joyride. 

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Last night, watched (and fell asleep on the couch) Class Action with Gene Hackman and Mary Elizabeth M.  Good movie about father-daughter relationships and courtroom drama.  Slightly off topic, isn't it time for Mr. Hackman and Robert Duvall to start receive Lifetime Achievement Awards, Kennedy Center Honors (deserve, in my opinion, more than some others who have received them)?

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Yesterday afternoon, TCM ran Gideon movie, which you rarely see.  My Mom had a slight crush on Jack Hawkins (who eventually needed a voice box).  Interesting movie with a youngish Anna Lee, and seemed to stay pretty faithful to the books.

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1 hour ago, chaya bat woof woof said:

Yesterday afternoon, TCM ran Gideon movie, which you rarely see.  My Mom had a slight crush on Jack Hawkins (who eventually needed a voice box).  Interesting movie with a youngish Anna Lee, and seemed to stay pretty faithful to the books.

Gideon movie?      I can't find a film by that name that has Hawkins and a youngish Anna Lee.

 

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14 minutes ago, jamesjazzguitar said:

Gideon movie?      I can't find a film by that name that has Hawkins and a youngish Anna Lee.

 

Gideon of Scotland Yard ran on 17 July, and stars Hawkins.

Anna Lee was in her mid-40s when this was made.  Whether that's "youngish" is completely relative to one's own age, I believe!

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8 minutes ago, txfilmfan said:

Gideon of Scotland Yard ran on 17 July, and stars Hawkins.

Anna Lee was in her mid-40s when this was made.  Whether that's "youngish" is completely relative to one's own age, I believe!

That "youngish" comment is what confused me.   I knew Anna Lee from The Crimson Kimono which TCM has been showing a lot of.   That was made in 1959 and she played an older women,   who loved booze and flirting with younger men.    As part of Noir Alley,  Eddie Mueller made the point that Sam Fuller liked to feature odd eccentric older-women in his films and mention Lee.    

Thus I decided to look for films she was in from the 40s believing that would be when she was "youngish".       This Gideon film was made in 1958 only a year before Kimono.

Note that Wiki list the film as Gideon's Day,  saying that it was originally released in the USA as Gideon of Scotland Yard.

PS:   Anna Lee was in films from 1932 to 1994 and T.V. until 1997,   so in that regard the late 50s was about the mid-period of her lengthy career.   (thus I could see the use of "youngish" in that context).

 

 

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Shallow Grave Poster

Shallow Grave (1994) Starz On Demand 9/10

Three Scottish flatmates find their new roomie dead and he left a suitcase full of cash.

I saw this when first released, loved it then and still do. It was the first film directed by Danny Boyle, who later did Trainspotting and the Oscar winning Slumdog Millionaire. The three main characters are played by Kerry Fox, Christopher Eccleston and Ewan Mcgregor. They all give excellent performances but the characters are obnoxious and unlikable. Still I was drawn into the story where greed makes the trio start turning on each other. They have suspicious cops to worry about and they unknowingly have some brutal gangsters searching for the money. This has a great Hitchockian twist at the end. I highly recommend this to suspense fans.

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Inside Daisy Clover (1965)

Overlong movie with way overage Natalie Wood playing a 16-year-old Daisy, who gets discovered by a Hollywood producer (Christopher Plummer).  Said producer makes Daisy's life a living hell while trying to make her a star.  Robert Redford is her gay friend who does the wrong thing in trying to help her out.

They probably could have cut a half hour out of the 128-minute runtime.

4/10

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Cherry 2000 (1988)

I was looking for a 1980s sci-fi film and I definitely found one in Cherry 2000. Everything about this film screams, “80s sci-fi!” It is also one of the worst films I have ever seen. I wanted something slightly ridiculous, but this takes ridiculous to an entirely different level. The premise of the film, trying to find a replacement sex robot, is interesting, but nothing else makes sense. Additionally, the script and acting are horrendous. If you like cult films, watch it, but that’s the only way I can possibly recommend this Mad Max fan fiction. 

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I re-watched Double Jeopardy because I find it interesting and like Tommy Lee Jones and Ashley Judd (think Bruce Greenwood got started on St. Elsewhere).  Then I watched Harriet.  Thought the actress was wonderful, but I found the film dragged a bit (and the font at the end re: postscripts was too hard to read).  I wish they would have gone more into the Underground Railroad.  It runs or ran through where I live (or close by) and I got a chance to see it and learn about it.  After the movie, I started High Sierra.  Great Bogie and Ida Lupino (beautiful and talented on many fronts - groundbreaking female director).

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