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The 1001 Movies to See Before You Die entries for 1944 are:

DOUBLE INDEMNITY

GASLIGHT

HENRY V

IVAN THE TERRIBLE

LAURA

MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS

MURDER, MY SWEET

TO HAVE AND HAVE NOT

Ooh I've seen all of these except for two (Henry V & Ivan the Terrible). It's probably the only time I will have ever seen the majority of one of these "Must See Before You Die" lists.

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1944

 

1. The Curse of the Cat People

2. Double Indemnity

3. Laura

4. A Canterbury Tale

5. The Woman in the Window

6. Tall in the Saddle

7. The Uninvited

8. Murder, My Sweet

9. Gaslight

10. None But the Lonely Heart

11. Ministry of Fear

12. Hail the Conquering Hero

13. The Scarlet Claw

14. To Have and Have Not

15. The Lodger

16. Summer Storm

17. The Miracle of Morgan's Creek

18. House of Frankenstein

19. The Mummy's Ghost

20. It Happened Tomorrow

21. Lifeboat

22. Together Again

23. The Suspect

24. I'll Be Seeing You

25. Meet Me in St. Louis

26. Strangers in the Night

27. When Strangers Marry

28. Dark Waters

29. The Spider Woman

30. The Pearl of Death

31. Casanova Brown

32. Two Girls and a Sailor

33. Hotel Reserve

34. Passage to Marseille

35. Between Two Worlds

36. Maisie Goes to Reno

37. The Conspirators

38. Kismet

39. Phantom Lady

40. Guest in the House

41. Mademoiselle Fifi

42. Gentle Annie

43. Christmas Holiday

44. The Great Moment

45. The Princess and the Pirate

46. The Mask of Dimitrios

47. Experiment Perilous

48. Jane Eyre

49. The Invisible Man's Revenge

50. The Mummy's Curse

51. The Heavenly Body

52. Dangerous Passage

53. Buffalo Bill

54. Arsenic and Old Lace

55. The Whistler

56. Mrs. Parkington

57. Blonde Fever

58. The Climax

59. The Hour Before the Dawn

60. Youth Runs Wild

61. The White Cliffs of Dover

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Swithin, I haven't seen FANNY BY GASLIGHT, but I think that was a Gainsborough picture you mentioned earlier. MASK OF DIMITRIOS is excellent, I concur. WILSON I wasn't crazy about.

 

Yes, Fanny... is a Gainsborough film, with James Mason as Lord Manderstoke. I may be a cheerleader of one for Wilson -- I think it's an utterly brilliant film. Funny, the Wikipedia entry for it says it was not a success at the box-office, but in the Wikipedia list of top grossing films for 1944, it's second only to Going My Way.

 

Btw, I usually lag behind, but  I'm ready with 1945 -- how'd that happen? I'll wait until tomorrow to post.  

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1945 Favorites


Brief Encounter
Adapted from Still Life, one of Noel Coward's short plays in his Tonight at 8:30 cycle, this utterly romantic movie is so English. And the two leads do the "right" thing at the end.
 
Children of Paradise (Les Enfants du Paradis)
Truffaut said, "I would give up all my films to have directed Children of Paradise."
 
Confidential Agent
The look on Katina Paxinou's face, when she pushes Wanda Hendrix out of the window -- one of the many excellent touches in this complex movie.
 
The Corn Is Green
The nice Bette at her best.
 
Les Dames du Bois de Boulogne
Haunting, early Bresson film.
 
The Man in Half Moon Street
He is 120, but special glands keep him young. Curiously poignant for a horror film.
 
Rome, Open City
Pioneering Italian neorealism. Godard said, "All roads lead to Rome, Open City."
 
Spellbound
Hello Dali!
 
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
One of the best of the old New York movies.
 
Wicked Lady
Another Gainsborough great.
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1944:

 

1.) "Meet Me In St. Louis"

 

2.) "The Miracle of Morgans' Creek.

 

3.) "Gaslight"

 

4.) "Double Indemnity"

 

5.) "Lifeboat"

 

6.) "The Suspect"

 

7.) "The Woman in the Window"

 

8.) "Laura"

 

9.) "To Have and Have Not"

 

10.) Bluebeard (don't see the copy on YT--find a better one, if possible)

 

My 1944 find--"Hell Bent for Election--a reminder to register to vote!"  Cartoon produced by Chuck  Jones, who took time off from his wartime Private Snafu cartoons to produce this Pro-Roosevelt cartoon.  Is almost antique in its' view of mudslinging.  Cartoon is on YT, if anyone wishes to view it.

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Yes, Fanny... is a Gainsborough film, with James Mason as Lord Manderstoke. I may be a cheerleader of one for Wilson -- I think it's an utterly brilliant film. Funny, the Wikipedia entry for it says it was not a success at the box-office, but in the Wikipedia list of top grossing films for 1944, it's second only to Going My Way.

 

I mentioned WILSON as an honorable mention. Perhaps the discrepancy on wikipedia has to do with profitability. I think WILSON was a top grossing film, but perhaps its prohibitive costs meant it was not a financial success. 

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1945 Favorites

 

Brief Encounter
Adapted from Still Life, one of Noel Coward's short plays in his Tonight at 8:30 cycle, this utterly romantic movie is so English. And the two leads do the "right" thing at the end.
 
Children of Paradise (Les Enfants du Paradis)
Truffaut said, "I would give up all my films to have directed Children of Paradise."
 
Confidential Agent
The look on Katina Paxinou's face, when she pushes Wanda Hendrix out of the window -- one of the many excellent touches in this complex movie.
 
The Corn Is Green
The nice Bette at her best.
 
Les Dames du Bois de Boulogne
Haunting, early Bresson film.
 
The Man in Half Moon Street
He is 120, but special glands keep him young. Curiously poignant for a horror film.
 
Rome, Open City
Pioneering Italian neorealism. Godard said, "All roads lead to Rome, Open City."
 
Spellbound
Hello Dali!
 
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
One of the best of the old New York movies.
 
Wicked Lady
Another Gainsborough great.

 

We have some of the same ones for '45 (which I will post in a moment).

 

Sometimes the 'old New York' look in movies from the 40s and 50s becomes a cliched bit of sentimentality. But in A TREE GROWS IN BROOKLYN, the sentimentality is somewhat offset with searing doses of realism. I love this film and every performer in it, especially James Dunn.

 

I have some of Bresson's titles included in later lists. I don't feel he hits his stride as a filmmaker until the 50s. But there is genius in everything he does.

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The 1001 Movies to See Before You Die entries for 1944 are:

 

 

DOUBLE INDEMNITY

GASLIGHT

HENRY V

IVAN THE TERRIBLE

LAURA

MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS

MURDER, MY SWEET

TO HAVE AND HAVE NOT

I don't think all of these are movies one needs to see before he dies. There are a few other titles that might be considered instead, in those years before a soul reclines on his deathbed. 

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This was the year Yvonne de Carlo became a star. Gene Tierney excelled in LEAVE HER TO HEAVEN, but she was dreadfully miscast in A BELL FOR ADANO. Laird Cregar gave one last great performance as a psycho in HANGOVER SQUARE. And Ann Todd became the highest paid actress in Britain after she impressed everyone in THE SEVENTH VEIL.

 

51WcUvoW3jL._SY300_.jpg

My list:

1. BRIEF ENCOUNTER* (romance drama)
2. LES ENFANTS DU PARADIS (French epic drama)
3. THE BELLS OF ST. MARY'S (comedy drama)
4. ROME, OPEN CITY (Italian neorealist war film)
5. A TREE GROWS IN BROOKLYN (literary adaptation)
6. I KNOW WHERE I’M GOING! (British romance drama)

7. STATE FAIR (musical)
8. THEY WERE EXPENDABLE (war film)
9. MILDRED PIERCE (noir melodrama)
10. AND THEN THERE WERE NONE (literary adaptation) and 
THE PICTURE OF DORIAN GRAY (literary adaptation)

Honorable Mentions:
A BELL FOR ADANO (war film)

BLITHE SPIRIT (fantasy comedy)
THE CLOCK (romantic comedy drama)
THE CORN IS GREEN (drama)
THE ENCHANTED COTTAGE (romance drama fantasy)
HANGOVER SQUARE (horror)
THE HOUSE ON 92ND STREET (spy docudrama)
KITTY (romantic comedy)
LEAVE HER TO HEAVEN (noir melodrama)
THE LOST WEEKEND (social message drama)
MOLLY AND ME (comedy)
SALOME, WHERE SHE DANCED (romance adventure)
SCARLET STREET (noir)
THE SEVENTH VEIL (British melodrama)
THE SOUTHERNER (drama)
SPELLBOUND (psychological thriller)
THE STRANGE AFFAIR OF UNCLE HARRY (noir)
VACATION FROM MARRIAGE (British drama)
A WALK IN THE SUN (war film)


*On my Top-20 classics of all time.

 

Notable Performers: Celia Johnson; Ingrid Bergman; James Dunn; Wendy Hiller; Margaret Rutherford; and Yvonne de Carlo.

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MOLLY AND ME (comedy)

 

I love Molly and Me, it would certainly be on my honorable mention list for 1945, if I made one. I wish TCM would show some of the early Gracie Fields films, like Sally in Our Alley.

 

Btw, Joyce Carey was in Brief Encounter, playing Myrtle. She was a great friend to Noel Coward and appeared in many of his plays and movies. I saw her when she was 91, in a walk-on part in a benefit performance of Coward's Semi-Monde, at the Royalty Theatre, London, in 1989. She died in 1993.

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1945:

 

1.) "Dead of Night"--Wonderful horror anthology film--episodes with Googie Withers, Michael Redgrave, and child actress Sally Ann Howes still pack a punch.

 

2.) "State Fair"--Only film with a Rodgers and Hammerstein score especially composed for film.

 

3.) "Saratoga Trunk"--Ingrid Bergman and Gary Cooper make a wonderful comic team.  Unexpected delight.  Bergman goes brunette & winds every man in sight around her little finger; Cooper fires off an occasional zinger.  Only drawback is Flora Robson's Dreadful makeup job.

 

4.) "Hangover Square"--Marvelous noir with Laird Cregar & Linda Darnell.

 

5.) " The Clock"--Judy Garland and Robert Walker

 

6.) "Spellbound"--Hitchcock + Dali+ Bergman= memorable film.

 

7.) "Fallen Angel"--The two hour and one minute version on YT fixes a Lot of plot holes--This version is the one I'm ranking, not the 98 minute version.  Alice Faye is underrated.

 

8.) "The Body Snatcher"--A fine Val Lewton/ Boris Karloff horror film.

 

9.) "Blithe Spirit"--Margaret Rutherford is one of my two picks  for Best Actress this year--Joan would tie--and would have another (solo) win in the future.

 

10.) "A Royal Scandal"--Overlooked farce that Otto Preminger keeps going at a gallop: Tallulah Bankhead,  and especially Vincent Price are expert.

 

10.) "Mildred Pierce"--Strictly on the value of the performances of  Joan Crawford, Eve Arden, and Ann Blyth.  Script is good, but not great.

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I love Molly and Me, it would certainly be on my honorable mention list for 1945, if I made one. I wish TCM would show some of the early Gracie Fields films, like Sally in Our Alley.

 

Btw, Joyce Carey was in Brief Encounter, playing Myrtle. She was a great friend to Noel Coward and appeared in many of his plays and movies. I saw her when she was 91, in a walk-on part in a benefit performance of Coward's Semi-Monde, at the Royalty Theatre, London, in 1989. She died in 1993.

I am not familiar with Joyce Carey. Thanks for bringing her to our attention.

 

I also wish some of the early Gracie Fields movies would turn up on TCM. I find her to be a most naturalistic performer. Seldom does a note ring false in any of her performances, regardless of character type or genre. She was a pro.

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1945:

 

1.) "Dead of Night"--Wonderful horror anthology film--episodes with Googie Withers, Michael Redgrave, and child actress Sally Ann Howes still pack a punch.

 

2.) "State Fair"--Only film with a Rodgers and Hammerstein score especially composed for film.

 

3.) "Saratoga Trunk"--Ingrid Bergman and Gary Cooper make a wonderful comic team.  Unexpected delight.  Bergman goes brunette & winds every man in sight around her little finger; Cooper fires off an occasional zinger.  Only drawback is Flora Robson's Dreadful makeup job.

 

4.) "Hangover Square"--Marvelous noir with Laird Cregar & Linda Darnell.

 

5.) " The Clock"--Judy Garland and Robert Walker

 

6.) "Spellbound"--Hitchcock + Dali+ Bergman= memorable film.

 

7.) "Fallen Angel"--The two hour and one minute version on YT fixes a Lot of plot holes--This version is the one I'm ranking, not the 98 minute version.  Alice Faye is underrated.

 

8.) "The Body Snatcher"--A fine Val Lewton/ Boris Karloff horror film.

 

9.) "Blithe Spirit"--Margaret Rutherford is one of my two picks  for Best Actress this year--Joan would tie--and would have another (solo) win in the future.

 

10.) "A Royal Scandal"--Overlooked farce that Otto Preminger keeps going at a gallop: Tallulah Bankhead,  and especially Vincent Price are expert.

 

10.) "Mildred Pierce"--Strictly on the value of the performances of  Joan Crawford, Eve Arden, and Ann Blyth.  Script is good, but not great.

I had THE BODY SNATCHER as an honorable mention but I felt my list was getting too long..and ultimately, I decided it was what I call a 'glorified economy film' meaning it exceeds the expectations of a film with its rather limited budget but it is still restricted by its budget. 

 

I like A ROYAL SCANDAL but I think William Eythe, whom I enjoy watching in other films, is the weak spot. It would have been a much stronger film if someone like Henry Fonda, Don Ameche or Tyrone Power had been the dashing male lead. I do agree that Tallulah gives a good performance, and so does Anne Baxter. But Price is hardly in it to make much of an overall impression.

 

I wanted to include DEAD OF NIGHT, but I feel the Redgrave vignette is superior but the rest is all quite mediocre. I could not recommend a film where just one of four parts is truly excellent. If someone chopped the Redgrave part out and made it into a separate short film, I would certainly recommend it on its own. 

 

I didn't realise there was a longer version of FALLEN ANGEL. Is this a director's cut? Or is this something a fan put together from collected outtakes? I think the 98-minute version is an acceptable time passer but not great.

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Has anyone been checking their top selections with the Fresh Tomatoes ratings? I was surprised to see that AND THEN THERE WERE NONE, which I listed tenth for 1945, has a 100% approval rating on Fresh Tomatoes. I didn't think it was so universally well-liked.

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1945 - 65 films seen

 

 

1. BRIEF ENCOUNTER

2. THE LOST WEEKEND

3. MILDRED PIERCE

4. ROME, OPEN CITY

5. AND THEN THERE WERE NONE

6. SPELLBOUND

7. THEY WERE EXPENDABLE

8. DEAD OF NIGHT

9. LEAVE HER TO HEAVEN

10. DETOUR

 

Runner-ups: SCARLET STREET, THE BODY SNATCHER, I KNOW WHERE I'M GOING, THE STORY OF G.I. JOE, and THE PICTURE OF DORIAN GRAY

 

 

Larry's Choice: THE WHITE GORILLA

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1945 - 65 films seen

 

 

1. BRIEF ENCOUNTER

2. THE LOST WEEKEND

3. MILDRED PIERCE

4. ROME, OPEN CITY

5. AND THEN THERE WERE NONE

6. SPELLBOUND

7. THEY WERE EXPENDABLE

8. DEAD OF NIGHT

9. LEAVE HER TO HEAVEN

10. DETOUR

 

Runner-ups: SCARLET STREET, THE BODY SNATCHER, I KNOW WHERE I'M GOING, THE STORY OF G.I. JOE, and THE PICTURE OF DORIAN GRAY

 

 

Larry's Choice: THE WHITE GORILLA

Please tell us more about WHITE GORILLA and why we should watch it. :)

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TopBilled--about "Fallen Angel" (1945); there are at least two prints of the longer version on YT. I'm Guessing here;  but version I'm speaking of has an extended scene of police brutality, and Faye & Andrews sharing a bed.  Has no introductory titles.  No subtitles either.  Because of these scenes, had no hope of getting Code approval.  Possibly a version for Great Britain?  Wouldn't a directors' cut have the opening titles?  A  messed up copy someone found somewhere & put on YT?  I don't know;  I do know this version fixes several plot holes.

 

Oh--1945 find: Bugs Bunny cartoon "Slick Hare".  Is set at The Mocrumbo, & dinner's only $600 per plate.  Elmer Fudd is a waiter, Bogie orders fried rabbit--check the cartoon out on Vimeo.  Search "Bugs Bunny Slick Hare".

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TopBilled--about "Fallen Angel" (1945); there are at least two prints of the longer version on YT. I'm Guessing here;  but version I'm speaking of has an extended scene of police brutality, and Faye & Andrews sharing a bed.  Has no introductory titles.  No subtitles either.  Because of these scenes, had no hope of getting Code approval.  Possibly a version for Great Britain?  Wouldn't a directors' cut have the opening titles?  A  messed up copy someone found somewhere & put on YT?  I don't know;  I do know this version fixes several plot holes.

Thanks film lover. I am going to take a look at it later today. I am afraid if I don't look at this as soon as possible, I might not get the chance to see it if someone removes it from YouTube. 

 

Probably it was a copy circulated in Europe or Australia, where strict censorship did not exist.

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Please tell us more about WHITE GORILLA and why we should watch it. :)

 

I haven't seen it -- I'll leave it to Lawrence to expound. But it sounded intriguing, so I just looked it up. Here's the IMDB synopsis. Does this not sound brilliant?

 

"A white gorilla is snubbed by black gorillas because he is the wrong color. Cut off from his tribe he becomes lonely and angry. After troubling hunters and natives, the white gorilla fights the king of the black gorillas while we are told by a narrator that the fate of Africa hangs in the balance."

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Sorry, everyone. I've been in a lot of pain this morning, and thus am not in the greatest of moods. That's why my list was unadorned, and I've been growling all over the boards.

 

THE WHITE GORILLA is another poverty row cheapie. The producers took a silent serial from 1927, spliced in some new footage with Ray "Crash" Corrigan as a hunter AND as the white gorilla, and then tried to tie it all together with bad narration. The results are hilarious. Fun fact: Corrigan also played the gorilla in 44's NABONGA.

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Sorry, everyone. I've been in a lot of pain this morning, and thus am not in the greatest of moods. That's why my list was unadorned, and I've been growling all over the boards.

 

THE WHITE GORILLA is another poverty row cheapie. The producers took a silent serial from 1927, spliced in some new footage with Ray "Crash" Corrigan as a hunter AND as the white gorilla, and then tried to tie it all together with bad narration. The results are hilarious. Fun fact: Corrigan also played the gorilla in 44's NABONGA.

 

Sounds similar to the film Bogie was making playing a director in the Leslie Howard \ Joan Blondell movie Stand-In.

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I haven't seen it -- I'll leave it to Lawrence to expound. But it sounded intriguing, so I just looked it up. Here's the IMDB synopsis. Does this not sound brilliant?

 

"A white gorilla is snubbed by black gorillas because he is the wrong color. Cut off from his tribe he becomes lonely and angry. After troubling hunters and natives, the white gorilla fights the king of the black gorillas while we are told by a narrator that the fate of Africa hangs in the balance."

I agree. It sounds absolutely brilliant. Why don't they make masterpieces like this today? :)

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Here's my ever growing list of films to see that have been listed for 45:

 

FALLEN ANGEL, BLITHE SPIRIT, STATE FAIR, KITTY, MOLLY AND ME, SALOME, VACATION FROM MARRIAGE, CONFIDENTIAL AGENT, and WICKED LADY.

 

CHILDREN OF PARADISE is one of those universally beloved classics that did nothing for me. I'm an infidel, I know.

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CHILDREN OF PARADISE is one of those universally beloved classics that did nothing for me. I'm an infidel, I know.

Children of Paradise is to you what Gone with the Wind; Double Indemnity; and Barbara Stanwyck as an actress are to me. We are all infidels, to some degree!

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TopBilled--about "Fallen Angel" (1945); there are at least two prints of the longer version on YT.  

I just found one that was uploaded in October. You're right, there are no opening credits. It just starts with him on the bus heading into Walton. I forgot Percy Kilbride was in this film.

 

It's interesting watching this again (it's been a few years). In some ways, it plays like a live TV drama. There's very little background music, and Preminger insists on all this dizzying camera movement, as if it was filmed in one take, and he was trying to get all the angles.

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