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1 hour ago, chaya bat woof woof said:

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). 

Jones and Judd certainly make DOUBLE JEOPARDY worth watching, but I wonder if the screenwriters really understood what double jeopardy means.

(Going to go into some SPOILERS here).

The fact that the no-good hubby faked his death and framed her for it does not mean she gets a free pass to go out and kill him and escape prosecution just because she was falsely convicted the first time. Two completely different scenarios. In real life she certainly would have been arrested (though a judge and jury might go easy on her considering the husband did screw her badly).

I mean say, what if she had been wrongly convicted of robbing a convenience store, then once she got out she just decided to rob the place out of spite? Again, it would be two different situations there.

Still, I think Jones and Judd made a great team. But the filmmakers really needed to do their homework on what this particular legal term means.

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I had to suspend belief over several things.  Spoilers:  the whole scene on the ferry, the bidding on the bachelor (the Armani dress and how Ms. Judd got it), etc.  I am also insure of the laws in different states re:  Double Jeopardy (and how easily Nick seemed to move around without being noticed - yes it happens, but, more often, only in movies).

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%22Mister_Drake's_Duck%22_(1951).jpg

 

Mr Drake's Duck (1951)

This is a charming bit of fluff! Douglas Fairbanks Jr. becomes a gentleman farmer on a run-down old farm in England. Yolande Donlan is his bride who wants to learn all about farming and is as handy as a drunken octopus in a leaky pickle barrel. Her education into all things agricultural includes her first visit to a cattle auction where she accidentally buys sixty ducks. The duck egg which she fixes for her husband's breakfast the next day has a green yolk which attracts the attention of a local bureaucrat who is delivering some of the myriad forms which are required when farming in England. He sends it off for analysis and the army, admiralty and R.A.F. quickly descend on the farm when it is found the egg contains uranium.

This is not high art nor intense drama but it is a quite enjoyable way to spend an hour and fifteen minutes. 

I was surprised to find that Yolande Donlan did not have a more extensive career. Her performance is charming and I would have thought that being paired with Douglas Fairbanks Jr. should have been a sort of passport to good roles before health issues affected her work. 

I am sure that some will recognize Jon Pertwee. He plays here a general farm hand. This is nearly twenty years prior to his appearance in: Doctor Who. He actually looks older in this role than he did in 1970!

 Wilfrid Hyde-White is perfect as the officious bureaucrat who unwittingly causes so much chaos.

Many of the other actors are very familiar as veteran character actors in English movies of the era and all perform well.

We began watching this on: Amazon Prime but that copy ends a full twenty minutes early and so we had to go to: YouTube to watch the ending.

I give this a 9/10 for what it is. It lost a point merely because it began repeating gags near the end.

 

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Last night I finally saw WAIT FOR YOUR LAUGH 2017, the documentary about Rose Marie's life & career.

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Like many, I first became familiar with Rose Marie as Sally on The Dick Van Dyke Show. I thought she had a horrible raspy voice and found it surprising she was previously a popular nightclub singer. As a kid I didn't care much for her charactor, but appreciated it much more as an adult, a "career woman without a fella".

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When the internet came around in the early 90's, I searched Rose Marie and found she was married to talented musician Bobby Guy and started her career as a child performer! I didn't see film footage of Baby Rose Marie until about 10 years ago and I was blown away!

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So a documentary about her long successful career is so needed to introduce more to the fireball of talent that is Rose Marie.

Her filmmakers were young enough to have never experienced any of her performances first, it was all discovery for them. They had originally wanted to make a documentary about the history of US popular entertainment and once they discovered Rose Marie, she just embodied it all: Vaudeville, Broadway, Radio, Film, Vinyl Recordings, TV....wow!

Rose Marie recounted incidents, narrating her life, career and the industries she worked in. Often, her words were voiced over vintage photos, film footage and reenactments to illustrate her point.  I loathe reenactments and find them super cheesy, but tolerated them here for the most part - and believe they were included for "consistency" with the archival images.

Other interviewees including Peter Marshall, Dick Van Dyke & the late Carl Reiner gave a point of view from those who worked with her. Rose Marie's daughter and lifelong best friend offered more candid and personal views in their spots, very fun to hear! (thank goodness no snarking) My favorite part of Rose Marie's story was her relationship with Bobby Guy-

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What fun to see footage of their cross country road trip honeymoon-thank goodness she carried a little camera EVERYWHERE. Bobby Guy was just as outstanding a talent as Rose Marie and I'm glad some time was spent talking about him. At least it seemed  he crammed a lot of happiness in his tragically short lifetime, dying from an undiagnosed illness at 44. It was especially great hearing impressions from their daughter Georgiana.

There's quite a bit of intrigue too, due to her close ties to the mob both through her father and later the forming of Las Vegas. She took AMAZING historic films of the Strip chronicling it's development through the years.

Rose Marie broke into the entertainment business because she was smart enough as a little child to recognize the elements of great showmanship and learned to imitate them. Watch any performance of Baby Rose Marie or the adult Rose Marie imitating Durante. She doesn't pick out the broad gestures or easy phrases, she sees the teeny nuances and absorbs them into her being. This is a woman who has successfully entertained people for DECADES. That's talent, and talent touches our hearts. 

So glad this was all recorded in this very well rounded documentary.

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9 minutes ago, TikiSoo said:

Last night I finally saw WAIT FOR YOUR LAUGH 2017, the documentary about Rose Marie's life & career.

I saw that about a year ago, it was very entertaining. It was interesting to know how she was treated so nicely by some famous mobsters like Al Capone and Bugsy Siegel. However she said Al Jolson was mean.

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Blondie Has Servant Trouble Poster

Blondie Has Servant Trouble (1940) Youtube 5/10

Mr Dithers has Dagwood and family house sit a supposedly haunted mansion.

The Movies! Network skipped this #6 entry in the series so I went to Youtube to view it. A black actor named Ray Turner has a role as a man the Bumsteads find at the house, it seems that he is staying there due to an initiation from a lodge. He plays it as a bug eyed coward, so maybe that's why Movie! did not show it, he has some funny moments though. They are soon joined by a creepy butler and his wife as the maid. One interesting thing about this one is there is some  suspense and threats of murder that are handled quite seriously. So it's an OK entry but not as fast or as funny as previous films in the series. 

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The Boston Strangler (1968) Fleischer Transitional Noir

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"Old ladies in Boston?       Think what it must be like in New York."

Directed by one of Classic Noirs greats Richard Fleischer.

Fleischer gave us The Narrow Margin, Armored Car Robbery and Trapped.

The Boston Strangler is a 1968 American Bio Noir loosely based on the the book by Gerold Frank about true story of the Boston Strangler. The screenplay was written by Edward Anhalt Cinematography was by Richard H. Kline and Music was by Lionel Newman. 

Fleischer stylishly combines visual Noir stylistics with what was the sudden popular flourish, in the mid 1960s  of the old revitalized optically printed split screen technique. Previously the technique was used to depict, as far back as the 1910s, two sides of say a telephone conversation.

In 1964 for IBM's "Think" Pavilion at the New York's Worlds Fair, Ray and Charles Eames caused a sensation with a 17- screen film they created this was followed by John Frankenheimer's Grand Prix and boosted again by the Universal's exhibition at Expo 67 in Montreal and a handful of Hollywood productions from 1968 to the mid 1970s.

Traditionally the split screen had divided the screen in half the rebirth brought multiple divisions allowing scenes to be depicted from different perspectives, by opening screens at different intervals the director can tell a story in a new way. Also different screens give different characters viewpoints, and even depicts simultaneous action in multiple locals. There is also I noticed in addition even a screen in screen sequence.

Another aspect of the use of multiple screens is that each of those screens contribute to achieving the same claustrophobic feeling that the old Academy ratio gave to Classic Film Noir, both within each individual frame and as a whole claustrophobic clusters of anxiousness and tension. You could also say they enforce the theme of the ability of the strangler to compartmentalize his psyche to the point of what, at the time, psychiatrists were calling a new "diagnosis" of Multiple Personality Disorder (known now as Dissociative Identity Disorder).

The split screen editing technique in The Boston Strangler was achieved by Film Editor Marion Rothman with Art Direction by Richard Day and Jack Martin Smith. 

The full effect the split screen technology in Fleischer's film was probably missing in action for 30 some 
odd years once it left theaters. Pan and scan with full screen would have decimated the intent. 

The multiple split screen technique also has an audio accompaniment that reminds me of the effect Robert Altman would later specialize in. Just like in say Altman's McCabe & Mrs. Miller, you get that same "eavesdropping" of overheard conversations though in The Boston Stranglers case it's overheard police "rousting" as they roundup suspects.

The film stars a handful of Classic Film Noir, Transitional Noir, and Neo Noir actors. Tony Curtis (Sweet Sell Of Success) as Albert DeSalvo, Henry Fonda (The Long Night (1947), and The Wrong Man (1956)) as John S. Bottomly, Jeff Corey (The Killers (1946), Brute Force (1947), Fourteen Hours (1951), Seconds (1966), In Cold Blood (1967), ) as John Asgeirsson, George Kennedy (Cool Hand Luke) as Det. Phil DiNatale, Hurd Hatfield (The Unsuspected (1947)) as Terence Huntley.

DeSalvo’s guilt was controversial at the time. He was an inmate at a state mental hospital He had a rap sheet for burglary. His confessions were not very accurate and contained errors. Some details, though, only the actual killer would have known.

A DNA test was administered to the evidence collected from the last Strangler victim Mary Anne Sullivan. Sullivan, was sexually assaulted and strangled with nylon stockings and discovered on January 4, 1964 in her apartment at 44-A Charles St., Boston. The test was positive so DeSalvo was at least guilty of one of the murders, but he may have been a copycat killer piggybacking on the deeds of the original Strangler, who knows? Aside from the police procedural aspects of the film its most definitely not a documentary.  It's in the same category as Victor Buono's The Strangler (1964) basically conjecture using the psychology of the time and pure fiction regarding the depictions and possible motives of the Boston Strangler.

Aside from poetic license with the facts and the psychological mumbo jumbo all the performances are excellent. Tony Curtis gives a bravo performance, matching that of his serious turn in The Sweet Smell of Success. Henry Fonda as the coordinator of the Strangler task force is equally compelling. I found the combo of noir stylistics with the split screen technology very workable and quite intriguing. The film does loose a bit of steam in the last third once DeSalvo is incarcerated. Screencaps are from an online streamer Its a good Transitional Noir 7-8/10. Full review with some screencaps in Film Noir/Gangster Pages

P.S. It's on TCM tonight

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9 hours ago, TikiSoo said:

I didn't see film footage of Baby Rose Marie until about 10 years ago and I was blown away!

I didn't even know about Baby Rose Marie until she turned up as one of the guest cameo performers  in International House (1933), on my WC Fields boxset:

(And what cracked  me up is that Sally Rogers, when she would sing on the show, hadn't changed her bob-sway-and-jazz-hands singing style in thirty years...  😄 )

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On 7/19/2020 at 1:49 PM, Bethluvsfilms said:

Jones and Judd certainly make DOUBLE JEOPARDY worth watching, but I wonder if the screenwriters really understood what double jeopardy means.

(Going to go into some SPOILERS here).

The fact that the no-good hubby faked his death and framed her for it does not mean she gets a free pass to go out and kill him and escape prosecution just because she was falsely convicted the first time. Two completely different scenarios. In real life she certainly would have been arrested (though a judge and jury might go easy on her considering the husband did screw her badly).

I mean say, what if she had been wrongly convicted of robbing a convenience store, then once she got out she just decided to rob the place out of spite? Again, it would be two different situations there.

Still, I think Jones and Judd made a great team. But the filmmakers really needed to do their homework on what this particular legal term means.

I distinctly remember people having an absolute fit over the poor logic of the premise of this movie when it came out, and critics SAVAGED it...and immediately after it was an INSTANT SMASH on opening weekend. Like I don’t remember the specific opening weekend gross, but I think it was over $20 million and the film itself went on to make over $100 million. Everyone knew the premise on which the film was based was incorrect, they just didn’t care.

There was even talk of Ashley Judd getting an Oscar nomination for best actress.

I myself never saw it, but it looks like it’s a special kind of stupid. 
 

edit: I went to Wikipedia and the film ended up grossing $177 million. They also have a special section in the films wiki entry about the in accuracy of the premise around which it is constructed

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40 minutes ago, cigarjoe said:

The Boston Strangler is a 1968 American Bio Noir loosely based on the the book by Gerold Frank about true story of the Boston Strangler.

One of my favorite scenes was George Voskovec as real life psychic Peter Hurkos, he "sees" the strangler in one of his visions, it turns out to be a pathetic pervert played by William Hickey. Hurkos also tells a cop played by James Brolin about how he knows he made up a story about having car trouble.

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15 hours ago, cigarjoe said:

The film stars a handful of Classic Film Noir, Transitional Noir, and Neo Noir actors. Tony Curtis (Sweet Sell Of Success) as Albert DeSalvo, Henry Fonda (The Long Night (1947), and The Wrong Man (1956)) as John S. Bottomly, Jeff Corey (The Killers (1946), Brute Force (1947), Fourteen Hours (1951), Seconds (1966), In Cold Blood (1967), ) as John Asgeirsson, George Kennedy (Cool Hand Luke) as Det. Phil DiNatale, Hurd Hatfield (The Unsuspected (1947)) as Terence Huntley.

While that's a nice "personal review" of THE BOSTON STRANGLER, I don't think any participants on this message board need to have Henry Fonda's or any of these other actors previous roles pointed out.

Thanks for the paragraphs on split screen techniques, something I've never given much thought to.

15 hours ago, cigarjoe said:

A DNA test was administered to the evidence collected from the last Strangler victim Mary Anne Sullivan. Sullivan, was sexually assaulted and strangled with nylon stockings and discovered on January 4, 1964

They had DNA tests in '64? Wow!

I liked THE BOSTON STRANGLER, it seemed to give Tony Curtis a meatier role to show off his acting talent-and just not a pretty face. 

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1 hour ago, TikiSoo said:

I liked THE BOSTON STRANGLER, it seemed to give Tony Curtis a meatier role to show off his acting talent-and just not a pretty face. 

He gained weight specifically for the part. Curtis was quite serious about his dramatic roles.

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Dennis Farina did a good segment on Unsolved Mysteries on why De Salvo probably wasn't the killer. Basically he wasn't even really competent and the cops pinned it on him and he went along. Keep in mind that the victims greatly varied in age and MO which is extremely unlikely for a serial killer (most serial killers have preferred types and murder methods).

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On 7/19/2020 at 1:49 PM, Bethluvsfilms said:

Jones and Judd certainly make DOUBLE JEOPARDY worth watching, but I wonder if the screenwriters really understood what double jeopardy means.

(Going to go into some SPOILERS here).

The fact that the no-good hubby faked his death and framed her for it does not mean she gets a free pass to go out and kill him and escape prosecution just because she was falsely convicted the first time. Two completely different scenarios. In real life she certainly would have been arrested (though a judge and jury might go easy on her considering the husband did screw her badly).

I mean say, what if she had been wrongly convicted of robbing a convenience store, then once she got out she just decided to rob the place out of spite? Again, it would be two different situations there.

Still, I think Jones and Judd made a great team. But the filmmakers really needed to do their homework on what this particular legal term means.

I think this might be Ashley Judd's best performance. I love the physicality of the role.

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5 minutes ago, SadPanda said:

I think this might be Ashley Judd's best performance. I love the physicality of the role.

Yes, despite the absurdity of the plot, Ashley Judd did turn in a great performance as the wronged and wrongly convicted wife.  She makes you root for her to win over that snake of a husband, regardless of the legal complications of the situation.

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It may be hard for some of you to believe, but I don't remember ever seeing the film Marty.  It was on TCM on Demand last night, so my Mom and I watched it.  Borgnine (whom I first saw in McHale's Navy) deserved his Oscar.  Paddy Chayevsky's script didn't seem to waste a word.  The movie was sad, touching, and Marty was so sympathetic and shows that physical attributes (for both Marty and his love interest) count far less than what is inside.  I am going to check this out but does anyone know if Betsy Blair was married to Gene Kelly (sp?)?

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1 hour ago, Allhallowsday said:

I think DeSalvo's corpse was exhumed in  2013 after a match was found between surviving evidence and a relative of his...

Yes should have explained it better.

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1 hour ago, chaya bat woof woof said:

I am going to check this out but does anyone know if Betsy Blair was married to Gene Kelly

From Wikipedia

"Blair and Kelly's relationship blossomed, culminating in their marriage in October 1941. She and Kelly remained married for sixteen years and had one daughter"

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1 hour ago, chaya bat woof woof said:

Has anyone been watching retro Jeopardy.  I realize how much Alex Trebek has really grown into his role.  He is leaving more time for the contestants to get through the board.  He also kind of looks like a younger Tom Selleck.  Just read he wants Betty White to replace him.

I believe his Betty White comment was a joke.   Here is what he said: 

""I joke with the audience all the time and I say, 'Betty White,' because they want somebody younger, somebody funnier," Trebek said while speaking to "Good Morning America."

Betty White is 19 years older than Trebek.   

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Three on a Match (1932)

I’ll be honest and say that the story here isn’t really that interesting. However, the star power and pre-code brutality more than makes up for that. This film features Warren William, Ann Dvorak, Joan Blondell, Lyle Talbot, Humphrey Bogart, and small appearances by Alan Jenkins, Glenda Farrell, and Frankie Darro. This film marks the earliest Bogart film I’ve seen. His part is very small, but he comes across as menacing as ever. 

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Just read a review in NY Times of Trebek.  Betty White is my Mom's age.  Frankly, I don't want to face Jeopardy without Alex.  Vanna did an okay job when Pat Sajak (he has a funny sense of humor that some people/contestants may not like) was out (liked when Pat's daughter filled in for Vanna).  I don't know whether Trebek actually has the right to name his successor (remember what happened with Johnny Carson re: Letterman).

At lunchtime, I watched (re-watched) The Young Philadelphians.  Also, in my area, we are back to having COVID updates.

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