What is the last film you watched? (2018)

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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by boblipton » Fri Jun 22, 2018 6:01 am

With Where's Charley? stubbornly MIA, the best way to get a good look at Allyn Ann McLerie in her prime is to look at Calamity Jame (1953). The movie was Jack Warner's gift to Doris Day for being a good girl and making all those profitable musicals from the song catalogue. Once again, the writers looked at what had worked for the Freed unit at MGM and decided to let Doris play Cowboys & Indians in a knock-off of Annie Get Your Gun, with "I Just Got in from the Windy City" to suggest "Everything's Up to Date in Kansas City" from Oklahoma.

The crown jewel of the songs is "Once I Had a Secret Love"; Doris and the crew set it up and milk it for all it's worth. Miss Day also gets the chance to show off her original show-biz ambition to be a dancer, with an athletic performance during the musical numbers, and even gets to do a sand dance.

Even though the camera and audience's eyes are all on Miss Day, I kept mine on Miss McLerie; she's the reason I rewatched this movie this particular time. While's she's a good cast member, careful never to upstage the star, her professionalism is always clear, and it's evident what an accomplished dancer she is, and a fine overall performer. I like her looks, but, alas, her features are too strong for American ideas of beauty. "Exotic" is the way she'd be cast, until she reached middle age. I need to keep an eye out for her turn as "Azuri" in the 1953 The Desert Song.

Bob
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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by drednm » Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:56 am

boblipton wrote:With Where's Charley? stubbornly MIA, the best way to get a good look at Allyn Ann McLerie in her prime is to look at Calamity Jame (1953). The movie was Jack Warner's gift to Doris Day for being a good girl and making all those profitable musicals from the song catalogue. Once again, the writers looked at what had worked for the Freed unit at MGM and decided to let Doris play Cowboys & Indians in a knock-off of Annie Get Your Gun, with "I Just Got in from the Windy City" to suggest "Everything's Up to Date in Kansas City" from Oklahoma.

The crown jewel of the songs is "Once I Had a Secret Love"; Doris and the crew set it up and milk it for all it's worth. Miss Day also gets the chance to show off her original show-biz ambition to be a dancer, with an athletic performance during the musical numbers, and even gets to do a sand dance.

Even though the camera and audience's eyes are all on Miss Day, I kept mine on Miss McLerie; she's the reason I rewatched this movie this particular time. While's she's a good cast member, careful never to upstage the star, her professionalism is always clear, and it's evident what an accomplished dancer she is, and a fine overall performer. I like her looks, but, alas, her features are too strong for American ideas of beauty. "Exotic" is the way she'd be cast, until she reached middle age. I need to keep an eye out for her turn as "Azuri" in the 1953 The Desert Song.

Bob
There's a bit of Azuri's dance here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lBuTmyYSzP4" target="_blank
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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by s.w.a.c. » Fri Jun 22, 2018 9:37 am

Watched a bit of Calamity Jane myself this morning. Certainly the most athletic performance I've ever seen DD give. An older lesbian friend of mine used to tell me that this was the film that confirmed her sexuality when she was a child.
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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by boblipton » Fri Jun 22, 2018 5:28 pm

earlytalkiebuffRob wrote:A vehicle for music-hall star Violet Loraine, BRITANNIA OF BILLINGSGATE (1933) has a good deal to interest and amuse, despite not being completely satisfactory in places. Billingsgate, for those non-Englishfolk, is the big London fish market, and Loraine plays the owner of a fried-fish shop whose spectacular singing voice is discovered when a film is being shot nearby and husband Gordon Harker (a porter) starts mucking around in the sound truck. At first Loraine is reluctant to try the films until her husband and children (John Mills and star-obsessed Kay Hammond) put the pressure on and she relents. During the making of the 'PICCADILLY PLAYGROUND', the family starts to disintegrate, with Hammond hobnobbing with gambling 'friends', Mills's passion for speedway and Harker's interest in the 'high life' and pretty girls giving the poor lady a rough time of it until things come to crisis point during the premiere!

A very nice copy, with some agreeable sentiment for those who care for it, as well as some interesting sidelights on the film-making business.

Note: this was also on BFI Player. When playing, there are a couple of diagonal lines across the image, presumably to deter piracy. After a while, they are not too distracting...
Britannia of Billingsgate is a nice rough comedy of what happens when a family that is doing all right for itself when in its own walk of life gets thrust into the high life, with no preparation. The cast in support of Violet Lorraine is, in retrospect, stellar (although listening to to a young, frizzy-haired Miss Hammond speak with a Cockney accent is alarming, when I'm more used to her more than a dozen years later in Blithe Spirit), but it's largely an ordinary programmer.... until about halfway through the movie. Then, back among her old friends in the fish market, Miss Lorraine sings a song, and that magic that happens when a stage performer has an audience happens.

There's a sequence in which the film-within-the-film is premiered.. This was shot at the Gaumont Palace at Hammersmith, and the movie audience gets to watch the organ rise from the floor with the organist playing. It's a nice memento of the way that movies used to be presented at first-class houses.

This movie was enough of a success that Miss Lorraine was lured back to the movies for one more effort, but eventually she decided that she was a stage performer, and stuck with that. Still, it's a pleasure to have this record of a star of the stage with a few minutes showing what she could do.

Bob
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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by Mike Gebert » Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:20 pm

The crown jewel of the songs is "Once I Had a Secret Love"
A lot of 50s songs with lush orchestrations are too much syrup for me, but that one is sublime. The surging emotion, crossed with the hints of western clip-clop which seem out of place yet perfect, and lyrics that leap from personal feelings to the infinite... a great, great song.
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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by drednm » Sat Jun 23, 2018 4:37 am

Year by the Sea (2016) is a pretty and pretty empty account of a "middle-aged" woman (and writer) who leaves her husband to rent a rustic cottage on Cape Cod to find herself. Good enough premise, but the Cape Cod she finds with its deserted towns, empty beaches, and retro cottage are all unrealistic, and that throws off the story. This one has everything but Patti Page singing "Old Cape Cod." Actually that might have worked better, to place the story in the 1950s. But I guess women didn't go "find themselves" in the 50s. The other old saw is that the locals immediately take Joan (Karen Allen) into their inner circle (ain't likely) so that she becomes involved in everyone's lives from the getgo. Anyway, she rents a cottage on a small island just off shore so that she has to row back and forth in a small dinghy.

While her husband back in the USA has been transferred to Wichita, she is befriended by a local free spirit named Joan (Celia Imrie) whose husband is dying in a hospice. Since they are both named Joan, they become instant best friends. You can tell Joan is a free spirit because she dances on one of those empty beaches and has a chuck wagon triangle hanging outside her front door rather than a doorbell. There's also the young woman who runs the little general store. She is a battered woman just waiting for someone to rescue her. Then there's the very friendly fisherman (Yannick Bisson) who takes an instant shine to Joan One (rather than Joan Two).

When the crabby husband (Michael Cristofer) comes to visit, all he does is complain about the rustic-ness of the place. When her friend/agent (S. Epatha Merkerson) comes to visit, all she does is complain that Joan One is not writing). Eventually the cliches overwhelm the story. To its credit, no one collects sea glass, but they do raid someone's house for firewood.

Much is made of the "off season," but it looks exactly like the "in season" part of the film. Mostly filmed in Wellfleet, the idyllic landscape in late summer/early fall would be jammed with tourists, but all we see are empty streets and no tourists ... not even one. Eventually both Joans have breakthroughs and start writing again (Joan Two is also a writer), and the film ends with the Joans scribbling and typing like mad. This makes Merkerson very happy since she seems to have acquired Joan Two as a client.

The only time we see any local inhabitants (as in extras) is when they have some sort of bizarre "race to the sea" on New Years Day. Despite its being January, they wear funny costumes and the race seems to be limited to women. Later, when the fisherman teaches Joan One how to clam, it's so hot he has to take off his shirt. That climate change thing must be going crazy on the Cape. I spent several summers in Falmouth when I was a kid. Even around 1960, this Cape Cod did not exist but the remnants of "old Cape Cod" were there and I remember them well.

Anyway, it was a nice try. Story is from a book by Joan Anderson (Joan Three) and directed by Alexander Janko (who seems to be primarily a musician and who graduated Princeton in 1991). To say this sea story has been watered down would be a cheap shot.
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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by boblipton » Sat Jun 23, 2018 5:59 am

Sandokan, La Tigre Di Mompracem aka Sandokan the Great (1963) has Steve Reeves strolling around the jungle as a Malaysian freedom fighter. Somehow the pale blue brocade coat he wears never gets stained, although he does take it off to stab the occasional tiger.

As you might guess, I didn't find this one particularly engaging, despite the beautiful photography. Three cinematographers are credited and I am not sufficiently familiar with any of them to take a guess as to who did what. However, part of the problem with the movie was that the print values kept shifting. I expect that close-up studio shots won't look exactly like telephoto shots of baboons, but I'd hope that they'd maintain the same lighting levels on the actors when they're in the process shots as when they're not.

Once my suspension of disbelief has been broken by matters like that, I start nitpicking, and notice stuntwork that involves guerillas swinging on ropes that depend from the sky and stopping with a silent ouch at a shuttered window. Cut the other side and the stuntman smashes through the splintering window.

The costuming is quite lovely, with red-coated British soldiers, turbaned Malay pirates and Genevieve Grad in a white-and-blue-grey outfit -- again, although she tramps through the jungle and even fords a muddy river, she always looks neat and freshly groomed in the next shot.

I'm not a great fan of Steve Reeves movies, which, apparently, no one expected to make much money until suddenly they did, so they didn't feel a need to put much thought into the details that afflict some one like me. Oh well.

Bob
Last edited by boblipton on Wed Jun 27, 2018 4:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by boblipton » Sat Jun 23, 2018 1:02 pm

Lobster Cop (2018) A squad of four police officers on an unwanted drug assignment are staking out a "logistics company". When the criminals become suspicious, they buy the restaurant they've been using for its toilet as a cover.... and are a runaway success as a restaurant in this startlingly gritty and funny cop comedy.

Most of the reason I find it so funny is I find its earnest, hapless and ultimately barely successful heroes so much like characters out of one of my favorite comic author's mind: Donald Westlake. Despite his having worked in Hollywood, few of his comic novels, some of them very cinematic, were ever successfully transferred to the screen, either because they decided to cast Robert Redford as a hapless New York schmuck (The Hot Rock), or they tried to shoot it on the cheap. Two of his screenplays became fine movies: Stephen Frear's neo-noir The Grifters and a personal favorite, Hot Stuff, about some cops who take over a fencing operation to run a massive sting.

Although Xinyun Li, the writer-director of this movie, has her cops and bad guys a lot more competent than Westlake liked on the pages of his books, they are just as subject to the problems of not thinking things through and of not seeing their opportunities that us mortal human beings are likely to.... except, of course, when we're the audience, and the camera is pointing at the bad guy, we get to see who he is and howl at how dumb the cop is.... and when the bad guy lets the cop pull a triple cross on him, we howl in laughter again.

It's good to know that the people in charge can foul up, just the same as us. It makes us like them better. And it's also good to know that at least in movies like this, they're the good guys and get the bad guys.

Bob
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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by boblipton » Sat Jun 23, 2018 4:26 pm

Come on Danger (1932): Tom Keene is on the trail of Julie Haydon, the desperado who's been leaving corpses with handwritten notes pinned to them. When she leads her men on a raid on Robert Ellis' ranch, Tom takes a bullet helping her escape, and then persuades her to to come with him ..... to Ellis!

It's one of the nicely shot B series westerns that RKO, alone among the Majors, maintained from the coming of sound into the 1950s. This one has a plot that switches back and forth nicely, some singing -- Keene's westerns were the first to feature singing, although it was always in the context of folks sitting around entertaining themselves -- and a good cast, including the usually wasted Julie Haydon.

Miss Haydon was hired by RKO, apparently as a backup or threat to Ann Harding, and then didn't do much with her. She distinguished herself on stage, though, and wound up marrying George Jean Nathan. In this one, she plays a woman of action very well.

Bob
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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by MaryGH » Sat Jun 23, 2018 7:23 pm

Wrong Turn 2003

Probably the most notable thing about this slasher is there is plenty of gore but no nudity nor sex in it even though it is the story of six young people who get stuck on an isolated mountain road in West Virginia. Filmed in Ontario, the wilderness shots are beautiful but lurking somewhere deep in it are a hideously deformed mountain family who are cannibals. The acting from Desmond Harrington, Eliza Dushku, Emmanuelle Chriqui, Jeremy Sisto, Kevin Zegers, and Lindy Booth is decent, and the monster makeup is enough to give one nightmares. Wrong Turn has elements of Deliverance (1972) and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre in it, recommended for anyone who like slashers in wilderness settings.
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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by boblipton » Sun Jun 24, 2018 5:39 am

The All-American Boy (1973): Jon Voigt has endless possibilities in front of him, so he heads down to Vacaville, gets Ned Glass as a trainer/manager and starts getting ready to become a great boxer. But things come to easy to him -- women most especially -- so he never has to commit to anything until it's too late.

Jon Voigt has proven himself a willing and bold actor over the decades, but he gives a closed and boring performance in this
long-winded and turgid story about "the Many Art in Six Rounds". It was an era in which important movies had anti-heroes and old values were dead, so this movie was pulled off the shelf after Midnight Cowboy had made Voigt a star.... and it flopped hard.

It flopped because it's a bad story, a story about someone who threw it all away for no reason but laziness and fear and unwillingness to commit. It's not a message that anyone really needs to hear: "Don't be afraid to work hard and commit to a goal. That's the way to succeed." We all know it, even if we can't do it ourselves. We don't need a precautionary tale to tell us that.

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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by Jim Roots » Sun Jun 24, 2018 7:05 am

boblipton wrote:Lobster Cop (2018) A squad of four police officers on an unwanted drug assignment are staking out a "logistics company". When the criminals become suspicious, they buy the restaurant they've been using for its toilet as a cover.... and are a runaway success as a restaurant in this startlingly gritty and funny cop comedy.

Most of the reason I find it so funny is I find its earnest, hapless and ultimately barely successful heroes so much like characters out of one of my favorite comic author's mind: Donald Westlake. Despite his having worked in Hollywood, few of his comic novels, some of them very cinematic, were ever successfully transferred to the screen, either because they decided to cast Robert Redford as a hapless New York schmuck (The Hot Rock), or they tried to shoot it on the cheap. Two of his screenplays became fine movies: Stephen Frear's neo-noir The Grifters and a personal favorite, Hot Stuff, about some cops who take over a fencing operation to run a massive sting.

Although Xinyun Li, the writer-director of this movie, has her cops and bad guys a lot more competent than Westlake liked on the pages of his books, they are just as subject to the problems of not thinking things through and of not seeing their opportunities that us mortal human beings are likely to.... except, of course, when we're the audience, and the camera is pointing at the bad guy, we get to see who he is and howl at how dumb the cop is.... and when the bad guy lets the cop pull a triple cross on him, we howl in laughter again.

It's good to know that the people in charge can foul up, just the same as us. It makes us like them better. And it's also good to know that at least in movies like this, they're the good guys and get the bad guys.

Bob
Westlake is one of my favourites, too -- I just picked up his adapted and failed James Bond effort, Forever and A Death. I liked the movie version of Hot Rock but everybody else in my family thought it was awful. It seems very much a relic of its era that hasn't travelled the time tunnel very well.

Jim

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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by boblipton » Sun Jun 24, 2018 7:15 am

Jim Roots wrote:
boblipton wrote:Lobster Cop (2018) A squad of four police officers on an unwanted drug assignment are staking out a "logistics company". When the criminals become suspicious, they buy the restaurant they've been using for its toilet as a cover.... and are a runaway success as a restaurant in this startlingly gritty and funny cop comedy.

Most of the reason I find it so funny is I find its earnest, hapless and ultimately barely successful heroes so much like characters out of one of my favorite comic author's mind: Donald Westlake. Despite his having worked in Hollywood, few of his comic novels, some of them very cinematic, were ever successfully transferred to the screen, either because they decided to cast Robert Redford as a hapless New York schmuck (The Hot Rock), or they tried to shoot it on the cheap. Two of his screenplays became fine movies: Stephen Frear's neo-noir The Grifters and a personal favorite, Hot Stuff, about some cops who take over a fencing operation to run a massive sting.

Although Xinyun Li, the writer-director of this movie, has her cops and bad guys a lot more competent than Westlake liked on the pages of his books, they are just as subject to the problems of not thinking things through and of not seeing their opportunities that us mortal human beings are likely to.... except, of course, when we're the audience, and the camera is pointing at the bad guy, we get to see who he is and howl at how dumb the cop is.... and when the bad guy lets the cop pull a triple cross on him, we howl in laughter again.

It's good to know that the people in charge can foul up, just the same as us. It makes us like them better. And it's also good to know that at least in movies like this, they're the good guys and get the bad guys.

Bob
Westlake is one of my favourites, too -- I just picked up his adapted and failed James Bond effort, Forever and A Death. I liked the movie version of Hot Rock but everybody else in my family thought it was awful. It seems very much a relic of its era that hasn't travelled the time tunnel very well.

Jim
I don't think it was awful, but they left out the most cinematic scene in the book: when they rescue the guy from the insane asylum by crashing a train. Also.... Redford as Dortmunder? When they've got George Segal and Ron Liebman in the cast?

Bob
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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by s.w.a.c. » Sun Jun 24, 2018 7:29 am

The Man Who Cheated Himself (1950) is the latest entry in TCM's Noir Alley series, a rare title that has a lot of great talent both in front of and behind the camera, and is worth seeing even if it doesn't quite add up to the sum of its parts. Lee J. Cobb is an experienced detective who's lost his head over a rich dame (Jane Wyatt) and tries to cover up her murder of her soon-to-be-ex-husband, but didn't count on his eager beaver brother John Dall figuring the whole thing out.

Director Felix E. Feist is a journeyman helmsman best known for Donovan's Brain, who makes good use of San Francisco locations shot by experienced cinematographer Russell Harlan (punching way below his weight) while the script makes poor use of too many unfortunate coincidences. As Eddie Muller pointed out, this is one of a handful of titles produced by Jack Warner Jr., who didn't have a lot of luck as an independent.

Unfortunately, my enjoyment of this film was marred by the recent decision/glitch that resulted in the SD version of TCM to be broadcast in a compromised 16X9 ratio that now makes it impossible to view anything shot in Academy ratio. Or any other ratio, for that matter, since even matted and scope titles are squeezed vertically. I have a feeling I'll be spending a lot of time on the phone with my cable company on Monday trying to explain this to them. I actually captured the moment when this happened on Thursday morning on my DVR in the middle of Calamity Jane. Since TCM is really the only reason I have cable, the word calamity seems appropriate.
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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by TerryC » Sun Jun 24, 2018 7:43 am

Since we are talking about very recent films, my wife and I just watched “Phantom Thread” (2017). We must be very out of touch with what is generally considered a good movie, because we basically thought it was crap. Here you have a very boring story populated with 3 or 4 very unpleasant and uninteresting people with an ending that is not only unsatisfying, but proves how depraved the principles are. We have a twenty minute rule, where if it doesn’t grab us we shut off a movie. My wife was all for this, but for some reason I wanted to persevere to the end. My advice is don’t. The only way to watch this I guess is as background wall paper if you are a fashionista. My wife however found most of the dresses freekish.

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Re: Dan Duryea

Unread post by earlytalkiebuffRob » Sun Jun 24, 2018 1:43 pm

Mbakkel2 wrote:Yesterday I watched one of the emotionally most gripping films of the 1950's. No folks, it was neither "A Streetcar Named Desire", "A Place in the Sun" nor other of the overrated films which have been praised by critics.
Although I wouldn't deny that STREETCAR is well-made, I've not been inclined to revisit it. I avoided A PLACE IN THE SUN when I first had the chance to see it, but three viewings (the last being because my late partner wished to watch it) have still not resigned me to liking it, my view being that it was a rather cold, calculated film with none of the intensity of von Sternberg's version of 1931.

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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by earlytalkiebuffRob » Sun Jun 24, 2018 1:59 pm

Don Ameche is probably the best thing in HAPPY LAND (1943), although the copy I watched doubtless did an injustice to Joseph LaShelle's camerawork, which was highly praised by James Agee at the time.

The story is set in a small town during the last War when drugstore owner Ameche receives a telegram telling him his boy (a sailor) has been killed on duty. Inconsolable, he turns against his work, his family, his pastor and the community in general. Out of the blue, a figure appears, his Grandfather, played by Harry Carey, who takes him on a journey into the past to indicate that his boy had more of a life than he thought.

The start and finish of HAPPY LAND are very effective, with Ameche giving a heartfelt, powerful performance. The finish, with his son's shipmate coming to tell him how his boy died are effective, too. Frances Dee, too, is luminous as Ameche's wife, who came along after his girl had married a marine. In my view, the film sags horribly in the middle as most of it comes over as rather soggy and over sentimental / nostalgic, and this seemed to devalue the rest of the film. This section also struck me as very tiresome. I wondered also if it was an influence on IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE, as the central idea has similarities (substitute Henry Travers for Harry Carey), and that film also has a chemist who has lost a son, although in the Great War in that case.

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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by Mike Gebert » Sun Jun 24, 2018 2:33 pm

Somebody here wrote something that made me buy a three-DVD set of lesser-known Ealing comedies— Passport to Pimlico, The Titfield Thunderbolt and Hue & Cry— of which I had only seen the first. I felt like watching one but the easiest sell was the one I'd already seen, because I was able to tell Younger Son that Mike Myers had wanted Paramount to buy its rights so he could remake its central premise as Wayne's World 2.

An unexploded bomb is being dug out in the working class neighborhood of Pimlico when it goes off, revealing a hidden chamber and some medieval treasure... including a document establishing that the neighborhood is in fact a grant to the Duke of Burgundy and thus, not part of England. The neighbors who live within the area start taking advantage of their status as non-Britons— such as by keeping the pub open after closing time— but then as black marketers start selling openly in the area, Whitehall tries to isolate them, they form a government to retaliate by instituting passport controls on the Tube, and so on.

It starts out a bit creaky—the print in this version is not that good and the cockney slang was often unintelligible to us— and I was worried it would go wrong afoot and offer a heavyhanded moral against wanting too much freedom from the wise central authority of the Establishment, or possibly the reverse (that a tiny little hamlet could exist in the postwar world free of serious thoughts about geopolitics and industrial infrastructure). In fact, once the premise kicks in this is a magical little film; screenwriter T.E.B. Clarke takes us through the various ramifications of independence and the work of self-government with a deft hand that nevertheless reflects reality as it must have been happening not far away, in say Germany, where the collapse of local authority and the rise of black markets were everyday reality. This atones for the fact that Henry Cornelius' direction is creaky and doesn't get as much out of the character actors as he might have. Lots of familiar non-stars, including Stanley Holloway, Hermione Baddeley, Raymond Huntley and Basil Radford and Naunton Wayne as Whitehall.

Fun facts: actually filmed in Lambeth, and after fixing up the vacant field where much of the movie is set, the moviemakers had to wreck it again so it would continue to qualify for rebuilding funds—a notion as funny as any in the film.
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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by boblipton » Sun Jun 24, 2018 4:32 pm

The Kid Ranger (1936): Sheriff William Farnum tracks down and kills a robber. It's his friend, who wanted the money to take his three-year-old daughter some place decent. Farnum hangs up his pistols, adopts the daughter and moves on. and eighteen years later, his confederate, Earl Dwire, tracks him down. and tells him that unless he helps him rob a payroll, he'll tell the daughter, now grown into Joan Barclay, the whole truth. He reluctantly agrees. Little do they know that Joan's intended, Bob Steele, will be riding guard on the money.

This movie doesn't show up with Bob's acrobatic feats until late in the proceedings -- although it's a doozy when it comes up -- but there is plenty of riding and fighting and also William Farnum as virtual co-star for the B Western fans. Farnum had entered features in 1914 and was a well-regarded talent. Although his star had dimmed considerably with advancing age and the coming of sound to pictures, he continued to work regularly, half in important roles in B westerns, like his brother Dustin Farnum, and half in smaller and cameo roles in programmers. It's a good story, with some decent twists and should please fans of the genre.

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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by drednm » Sun Jun 24, 2018 7:26 pm

Behold My Wife! (1934) has a juicy story and a stunningly beautiful Sylvia Sidney as an Apache maiden who comes to the rescue of a runaway rich boy (Gene Raymond) who gets shot in a saloon in New Mexico (it may have been Arizona). Directed by Mitch Leisen with loving close-ups of the stars, the story starts out with a snotty New York family planning to sabotage Raymond's marriage to a lowly stenographer (Ann Sheridan in one of the last of the 18 films she made in 1934). They send the haughty sister (Juliette Compton) to pay her off and give her a one-way ticket to California. Sheridan has other travel plans after getting dumped. When Raymond learns of their dealings, he runs off but swears revenge on the hypocritical family (Laura Hope Crews and H.B. Warner are the parents and very concerned about their social position). Compton is married but having an affair. So ... after getting saved in New Mexico, Raymond decides to marry the Indian and parade her around his family's social snob set. After a few more plot twists, we can guess the ending. Sidney has never looked more beautiful and she gets a funny scene at the snob party where she tells a story about how Indians love white men. Raymond and Compton are quite good. Monroe Owsley plays a cad (what a surprise), Kenneth Thomson plays a dud husband, Dean Jagger plays Pete, Eric Blore is a butler, Charlotte Granville is a society matron with Nella Walker, Dewey Robinson, Jim Thorpe, Charles Middleton, Jack Mulhall, and Kate Price among the familiar faces.
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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by Danny Burk » Sun Jun 24, 2018 7:34 pm

drednm wrote:Behold My Wife! (1934)...
It sounds quite interesting. I assumed that it must be a Paramount, but I'd never heard of it. Looking into it, I noticed that there is a 1920 version from Paramount as well, starring Milton Sills. Unfortunately, it's apparently lost, according to the LOC list.

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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by drednm » Sun Jun 24, 2018 8:09 pm

Danny Burk wrote:
drednm wrote:Behold My Wife! (1934)...
It sounds quite interesting. I assumed that it must be a Paramount, but I'd never heard of it. Looking into it, I noticed that there is a 1920 version from Paramount as well, starring Milton Sills. Unfortunately, it's apparently lost, according to the LOC list.
Yes Paramount. It's on YT
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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by boblipton » Mon Jun 25, 2018 4:58 am

drednm wrote:Behold My Wife! (1934) has a juicy story and a stunningly beautiful Sylvia Sidney as an Apache maiden who comes to the rescue of a runaway rich boy (Gene Raymond) who gets shot in a saloon in New Mexico (it may have been Arizona). Directed by Mitch Leisen with loving close-ups of the stars, the story starts out with a snotty New York family planning to sabotage Raymond's marriage to a lowly stenographer (Ann Sheridan in one of the last of the 18 films she made in 1934).
Nineteen if you count one of Lewyn's star-gazing shorts. Thanks for the heads up.

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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by drednm » Mon Jun 25, 2018 6:27 am

boblipton wrote:
drednm wrote:Behold My Wife! (1934) has a juicy story and a stunningly beautiful Sylvia Sidney as an Apache maiden who comes to the rescue of a runaway rich boy (Gene Raymond) who gets shot in a saloon in New Mexico (it may have been Arizona). Directed by Mitch Leisen with loving close-ups of the stars, the story starts out with a snotty New York family planning to sabotage Raymond's marriage to a lowly stenographer (Ann Sheridan in one of the last of the 18 films she made in 1934).
Nineteen if you count one of Lewyn's star-gazing shorts. Thanks for the heads up.

Bob
Sheridan is also gorgeous in this one and she's only 19 years old. Seems like she went from "chorus girl" to featured player all in one year.
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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by s.w.a.c. » Mon Jun 25, 2018 8:17 am

Saw Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom on the weekend. Didn't care much for the last one, and this one is only a notch or so better, with the same lack of attention paid to characters or plotting. The dinos look cool, which is all anyone cares about anyway, but at no point does anyone exhibit anything resembling believable human behaviour.
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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by R Michael Pyle » Mon Jun 25, 2018 8:32 am

drednm wrote:Behold My Wife! (1934) has a juicy story and a stunningly beautiful Sylvia Sidney as an Apache maiden who comes to the rescue of a runaway rich boy (Gene Raymond) who gets shot in a saloon in New Mexico (it may have been Arizona). Directed by Mitch Leisen with loving close-ups of the stars, the story starts out with a snotty New York family planning to sabotage Raymond's marriage to a lowly stenographer (Ann Sheridan in one of the last of the 18 films she made in 1934). They send the haughty sister (Juliette Compton) to pay her off and give her a one-way ticket to California. Sheridan has other travel plans after getting dumped. When Raymond learns of their dealings, he runs off but swears revenge on the hypocritical family (Laura Hope Crews and H.B. Warner are the parents and very concerned about their social position). Compton is married but having an affair. So ... after getting saved in New Mexico, Raymond decides to marry the Indian and parade her around his family's social snob set. After a few more plot twists, we can guess the ending. Sidney has never looked more beautiful and she gets a funny scene at the snob party where she tells a story about how Indians love white men. Raymond and Compton are quite good. Monroe Owsley plays a cad (what a surprise), Kenneth Thomson plays a dud husband, Dean Jagger plays Pete, Eric Blore is a butler, Charlotte Granville is a society matron with Nella Walker, Dewey Robinson, Jim Thorpe, Charles Middleton, Jack Mulhall, and Kate Price among the familiar faces.
I think Sylvia Sidney never, ever looked as gorgeous as this film! It truly surprised me when I saw it.

As for Ann Sheridan (still Clara Lou in those days), I just saw her in "Ladies Should Listen", also 1934, with Cary Grant. She had a good deal of baby fat that year. By the next year it was all "leaned off".

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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by R Michael Pyle » Mon Jun 25, 2018 11:22 am

I watched "Ladies Should Listen" (1934) with Cary Grant, Frances Drake, Edward Everett Horton, Rosita Moreno, George Barbier, Nydia Westman, Charles Ray, Charles Arnt, and others, including in a small bit Clara Lou Sheridan before she became Ann Sheridan. Directed by Frank Tuttle, this is an early attempt at screwball comedy, and it succeeds for the most part, though there are what seemed to me some awkward, unsure moments where it looked as if the culture of the film was so unfamiliar that no one seemed to know what to do for a few shakes. These awkward moments make the final product not what would eventually be the same kind of film, though much better made, just two or three years later. Nevertheless, I enjoyed the film, and it DID get better and better, and, though it finished rather quickly, if not abruptly, finished well. Lots of mix-up about who's in love with whom, and a plot about theft of investments in a foreign country, to boot. Edward Everett Horton, usually about as professional as the term gets, seems a tad mechanical here. So does Cary Grant, for that matter; possibly learning the craft of screwball in its infancy. Frances Drake and especially Rosita Moreno fit well into their parts. It's Nydia Westman who steals every single scene she's in. She's a delight, and, frankly, outplays the others to the point she nearly stands out too much. She was famous on the stage, was raised from infancy on the stage with her parents, and went on to great respect among her peers, though not being as well known to general film audiences. Good film for seeing Cary Grant in an early performance. From the Vault Collection.

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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by silentfilm » Mon Jun 25, 2018 11:50 am

Caught The Incredibles 2 (2018) and it was very good. The action sequences, especially when Elastigirl saves a runaway metro train, and when she battles the villain ScreenSlaver in a room with a strobe-light are incredible. The film is very funny and has an excellent script. Mr. Incredible can battle villains all day, but he is no match for "new math" and teenage hormones! I'd see it again just to listen to the music score.

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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by s.w.a.c. » Mon Jun 25, 2018 11:59 am

Thanks for the heads up about that Cary Grant Vault Collection, I haven't seen that package before, and it's a nice assortment of films. I have a stand-alone copy of She Done Him Wrong which has a few extras (Robert Osborne intro, Walter Lantz animated short etc.), I wonder if those are replicated in the multi-film set?
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Re: What is the last film you watched? (2018)

Unread post by s.w.a.c. » Mon Jun 25, 2018 12:03 pm

silentfilm wrote:Caught The Incredibles 2 (2018) and it was very good. The action sequences, especially when Elastigirl saves a runaway metro train, and when she battles the villain ScreenSlaver in a room with a strobe-light are incredible. The film is very funny and has an excellent script. Mr. Incredible can battle villains all day, but he is no match for "new math" and teenage hormones! I'd see it again just to listen to the music score.
The character theme songs that play over the end credits were a nice touch. Love that Frozone theme! Also kinda weird to see a clip from a Hanna Barbera show in the middle of a Disney/Pixar film. Kind of like their use of Hello Dolly! in Wall-E.
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