Review older films here: 1979 and earlier - Page 45 - AVS Forum
Forum Jump: 
Reply
 
Thread Tools
post #1321 of 1346 Old 06-22-2014, 04:17 PM
Senior Member
 
kkl10's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 347
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Liked: 60
No, Kilgore. I didn't delete the post. I can still see it, not sure what happened.
I chose not to do anything about it because I'd rather settle this right away instead of continuing with a lie, even if I have to dig me in a hole. To me, this issue is not so simple as you make it appear, but since I'm causing visible discomfort, and to respect the spirit of the forum, I won't post further reviews from downloads in this thread nor the 80s thread.

To explain my attitude:

I don't regard cinema merely as short-lived entertainment or disposable pleasure. I love cinema as an art form, it is a necessity to me, just like music and literature. I download most movies for two reasons. Primary reason is I can't afford to pay for the copies nor to go to the theater as much as I want. Second reason stems, in part, from the previous one--I have been led to believe that people shouldn't have to pay for art nor any such valuable asset for personal growth. It's not because I don't care or don't take it seriously. Giving money into a vice doesn't make it any more serious. A vice is a vice, and it's as serious as the addicted feels. If that makes me not a cinephile then so be it, it's just a word. I know that I take movies very seriously, and I know that I go through a bit of suffering when I oblige myself to write about them.

Should artists be rewarded for their work?
Yes, of course. Artists must be rewarded for their work, it's their lives.

But what about those who can't afford to see or appreciate ther work? Do they deserve to be kept in ignorance? I don't think so. That seems quite unfair to me. It is my honest opinion that art is immensely valuable as a factor for personal growth, therefore, it must be freely available for everyone; money shouldn't have any say in this. Just as I think that all levels of education should be free for everyone (I'm not saying that art and academic education are the same thing, I'm saying that they are equally important and it's not fair to discriminate between poor and rich). This isn't necessarily contradictory with the fact that artists need to see some profit from their work, but in reality things are quite non-ideal. Utopia, yes. But with the advent of Internet this utopia has become a reality difficult resist for cinema and music lovers like me. Don't know what more to say.
kkl10 is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #1322 of 1346 Old 06-22-2014, 10:02 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Kilgore's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Huntsville Ontario
Posts: 2,958
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 45 Post(s)
Liked: 163
You are noble in your thievery. You are also deceiving yourself.


I am a musician. Every dollar I earn comes from performing music, and teaching music. It took me 15 years to accumulate all the movies in my collection. I paid for every one of them.


I have no car. I have no house. I have a nice home theater and 1900 movies. You know why? I don't need a car. I prefer to rent an apartment.


...but I LOVE cinema.


I have friends who admire my collection. They think I spend an awful lot of money on movies I could just as easily download for free. They always ask to borrow a movie. I tell them to get stuffed.


I have other friends who buy movies as well (few as they might be). They ask to borrow a movie. I gladly let them borrow whatever they want.


You know why?


...because they appreciate it.


You may think you're a cinema lover, but trust me...you're not. You're a thief. My neighbor has a car I can't afford. Why can't I just go and take it? It's because I would be a thief. It's EXACTLY the same thing when you syphon movies off the internet like gasoline through a syphon hose.


And no, you cannot borrow my copy of Apocalypse Now: Full Disclosure Edition Blu-ray.


Sorry, Bill....you can now have your wonderful thread back.

Last edited by Kilgore; 06-22-2014 at 10:07 PM.
Kilgore is online now  
post #1323 of 1346 Old 06-23-2014, 10:30 AM - Thread Starter
One-Man Content Creator
 
wmcclain's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 16,928
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 181 Post(s)
Liked: 321
Two Mules for Sister Sara (1970), directed by Don Siegel.

Quote:
Originally Posted by me

Sister Sara: We'd better hurry. I've never seen a train blown to hell and gone before.
When Clint Eastwood is running explosives to Mexican revolutionaries and encounters a bunch of drunks about to rape a naked nun in the desert, you can be sure the villains do not need to make any long term plans.

We have several genres combined:

  • The light adventure story, not too serious, but with action, humor and romance.
  • The "blowing stuff up in Mexico" genre, which would include The Professionals (1966) and 100 Rifles (1969), for example.
  • The wry comment on spaghetti westerns, with Eastwood in the Man With No Name clothes and the great goofy Ennio Morricone score.
  • The tough guy frustrated by an inaccessible female traveling companion.

The joke is on Clint this time: the audience learns long before he does that Sara ain't no nun. This is a bit irreverent: we get the same church music for both madonna and whore.

Misc notes:

  • The title is also a joke: Clint is her second mule.
  • Does that guy love dynamite or what?
  • Notice how Mexico can be a land of ancient ruins?
  • Now and then we get the rare close-ups of the anonymous extras, as in the pain and sadness in the eyes of the firing squad as they march away after an execution.
  • I've read that both Siegel and Eastwood were intimidated by Shirley MacLaine; she can be fierce. The characters have a nicely relaxed chemistry, not very passionate but that's not his style anyway.
  • The original story was by the great western director Budd Boetticher, who wanted to make it himself with Deborah Kerr and Robert Mitchum, more or less reprising their roles from Heaven Knows, Mr. Allison (1957). It was taken away from him, rewritten and somehow found its way to Liz Taylor, who offered it to Eastwood. Then she couldn't be in it.

Available on Blu-ray and pretty fine looking.



-Bill
wmcclain is online now  
post #1324 of 1346 Old 06-23-2014, 02:26 PM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Josh Z's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Planet Boston, source of the spice, Melange.
Posts: 19,911
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 140 Post(s)
Liked: 316
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kilgore View Post
I treat Redux as an extra feature, like a deleted scene composite. The added scenes are interesting but entirely unnecessary. I'm glad to be able to have seen them, but when I sit back to re-watch Apocalypse, I always go for the theatrical version.
I view the theatrical cut and the Redux cut as two separate movies that approach the same subject from different angles. The theatrical cut is a movie about archetypes and themes. The Redux cut humanizes the characters and is a movie about people.

I agree that the theatrical cut is the artistically superior movie, but I've come to appreciate the Redux cut over the years for its different viewpoint. It's a movie that was assembled by an artist many years after the original production. The fiery passion may have dulled, but it has a more reflective tone. Both should continue to co-exist.

Josh Z
Writer/Editor, High-Def Digest (Blog updated daily!)
Curator, Laserdisc Forever

My opinions are my own, and do not necessarily reflect those of my employers.

Josh Z is online now  
post #1325 of 1346 Old 06-27-2014, 10:55 AM - Thread Starter
One-Man Content Creator
 
wmcclain's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 16,928
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 181 Post(s)
Liked: 321
The Magic Christian (1969), directed by Joseph McGrath.

Another absurd, skit-based 1960s satirical freakout film. Shelve it with:


It's perhaps clearer in the book (not all the film skits make any sense) but the moral is: "Every man has his price". Peter Sellers expertly mugs as Sir Guy Grand, fabulously wealthy and eccentric, hauling Ringo Starr along for no good reason.

The satire is heavy handed even by the standards of the unsubtle genre. Still, if you know someone with a childish sense of humor who enjoys the prospect of the stupid and cruel practical jokes a billionaire could arrange: this might be a good gift.

A confession of childish sense of humor: we laughed until we cried at this one. Well, those were different days. My favorite bits:

  • The auction at Sotheby's: "Mark it SOLD to the old American twit in the front row".
  • Sir Guy at the restaurant: he wears a raincoat and is strapped into le chaise gastronomique while the food is smeared in his face.

In the final bit, businessmen dive for free money in a heated vat of blood, urine and manure.

Too many cameo parts to mention, including the pre-Monty Python John Cleese and Graham Chapman, who also get writing credits.

If the film is remembered at all, it's for some poster art of Raquel Welch as "Priestess of the Whip", managing a crew of naked female galley slaves.

The title has no meaning.

Happy score by Badfinger.

As usual, the Olive Films Blu-ray has no subtitles or extras, but the image is rather good. The old DVD had been cropped to 1.33; this is 1.77.



-Bill
wmcclain is online now  
post #1326 of 1346 Old 07-03-2014, 04:22 AM - Thread Starter
One-Man Content Creator
 
wmcclain's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 16,928
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 181 Post(s)
Liked: 321
Red River (1948), produced and directed by Howard Hawks.

The two most prominent features of this massive cattle drive story are:

  • John Wayne, showing (as if it needed demonstration) that he can be a flawed protagonist, always strong but sometimes in the wrong.
  • Montgomery Clift (age 26 when it was filmed) bringing new youthful vigor into westerns. In many ways he is like his elders: he's been to war, is fast with a gun, taciturn and steadfast. But he departs from them in having new ideals and being able to reject even legitimate authority.

That post-War movie vision of youth will soon sour, derailing into juvenile delinquent and biker films.

The movie has a John Ford look (and uses some of his regulars), but is maybe a bit talkier and has more spice in the romance.

The ending is a mixed bag. We never quite trusted tough guy John Ireland but he was not actually a villain and it seems unjust to see him shot down. We didn't want Wayne and Clift to kill each other, but the happy ending resolution seems abrupt and "Hollywood".

I always enjoy seeing Joanne Dru, who I think was under-appreciated. I'll have to watch Wagon Master (1950) again; I recall her being extra cute there. She married John Ireland after this film; he was the second of her four husbands.

Some of the cattle drive is done with process shots, but we also have a real, vast herd and impressive shots of managing them, as when crossing the river. Some dangerous looking stunts.

A good bit: caught between enraged John Wayne and marauding Comanches, our drovers elect to keep ahead of the Duke.

Dimitri Tiomkin score. Hawks' first western.

Available on Blu-ray from Criterion. Some fine imagery, although a few of the scenes are from a much poorer source.



-Bill
wmcclain is online now  
post #1327 of 1346 Old 07-03-2014, 06:50 AM
AVS Special Member
 
MSchu18's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Las Vegas
Posts: 1,057
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 14 Post(s)
Liked: 129
outstanding movie... is that on BD?

Klipsch Image Ones
Klipsch x11i
Rega P5/Groovetracer/Denon DL-103R
Parks Audio Budgie Phono Pre/SUT
Pioneer SC35
Bel Canto REF 500M
Klipsch Cornwall/Crites/Aletheia Audio
Klisch RC64II
Klipsch SW-115
OPPO BDP-93
Samsung PN64D8000
MSchu18 is offline  
post #1328 of 1346 Old 07-03-2014, 06:55 AM - Thread Starter
One-Man Content Creator
 
wmcclain's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 16,928
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 181 Post(s)
Liked: 321
Quote:
Originally Posted by MSchu18 View Post
outstanding movie... is that on BD?
Red River? Yes: Criterion. Netflix has it; they've been pretty good about getting Criterion Blu-rays recently.

-Bill
wmcclain is online now  
post #1329 of 1346 Old 07-06-2014, 03:32 PM
Senior Member
 
kkl10's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 347
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Liked: 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by wmcclain View Post
Red River (1948), produced and directed by Howard Hawks.

-Bill
Yet another nice collage. Interesting movie.
kkl10 is offline  
post #1330 of 1346 Old 07-06-2014, 03:59 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Mr.G's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 3,374
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 48 Post(s)
Liked: 107
Quote:
Originally Posted by wmcclain View Post
Red River (1948), produced and directed by Howard Hawks.

I always enjoy seeing Joanne Dru, who I think was under-appreciated. I'll have to watch Wagon Master (1950) again; I recall her being extra cute there. She married John Ireland after this film; he was the second of her four husbands.

-Bill
Poor Joanne didn't enjoy being typecast.

"Two years later she "redeemed" herself with her role in the classic Howard Hawks western Red River (1948). She followed that with another western, John Ford's She Wore a Yellow Ribbon (1949), again playing opposite John Wayne. Unfortunately, her success in those two classics resulted in the scripts being submitted to her consisting of mostly westerns, and she got typecast (this from a woman who said, "I simply hated horses...")."

Joanne Dru may have been cute but I heard she once put a man's eye out.



Sorry it's been a slow day.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg joanne-dru.jpg (23.0 KB, 114 views)
wmcclain likes this.

All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Movies

Mr.G is offline  
post #1331 of 1346 Old 07-07-2014, 08:05 AM
AVS Special Member
 
MSchu18's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Las Vegas
Posts: 1,057
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 14 Post(s)
Liked: 129
Jean Aurthur also had some cross over issues.

BTW, I would love to see The Plainsman on BD someday soon.

Klipsch Image Ones
Klipsch x11i
Rega P5/Groovetracer/Denon DL-103R
Parks Audio Budgie Phono Pre/SUT
Pioneer SC35
Bel Canto REF 500M
Klipsch Cornwall/Crites/Aletheia Audio
Klisch RC64II
Klipsch SW-115
OPPO BDP-93
Samsung PN64D8000
MSchu18 is offline  
post #1332 of 1346 Old 07-09-2014, 07:02 AM - Thread Starter
One-Man Content Creator
 
wmcclain's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 16,928
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 181 Post(s)
Liked: 321
Heaven Knows, Mr. Allison (1957), directed by John Huston.

This is another in the "adventures of a tough guy and an inaccessible woman" genre, similar to Huston's own The African Queen. Some plausible survival plot -- hide in a cave -- but also crazy heroics, like sneaking into the enemy camp for supplies.

Deborah Kerr played a sharp-witted, flashing-eyed nun in Black Narcissus ten years earlier. Here she is more of a simple Irish girl, although still amazingly expressive in small movements of her face and eyes.

She hasn't taken her final vows yet, and is sorely tempted by Robert Mitchum's honest and respectful declarations. But it is not to be: this is an exception to the rule that men and women can't be "just friends".

Kerr and Mitchum were life-long friends after this. According to a booklet with the disc the cement was an incident when she was rowing a boat and Huston yelled "Faster! Faster!" She applied herself and yelled back "Is this ****ing fast enough?" I'd love to see outtakes.

The Twilight Time Blu-ray is not very impressive. Poor detail and registration. (I say "registration", although I read in the High Def Digest review that this was not done in three-strip Technicolor. I don't know enough about film to explain why I see color fringes, but I do see them). As with many color films of that era, the green is particularly deficient. We expect more vivid saturation in tropical foliage.



-Bill
wmcclain is online now  
post #1333 of 1346 Old 07-09-2014, 07:40 AM
AVS Special Member
 
MSchu18's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Las Vegas
Posts: 1,057
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 14 Post(s)
Liked: 129
that's to bad, I had high hopes for that Screen Archives exclusive. to be honest, I dont think this was a true technicolor release originally was it?

Klipsch Image Ones
Klipsch x11i
Rega P5/Groovetracer/Denon DL-103R
Parks Audio Budgie Phono Pre/SUT
Pioneer SC35
Bel Canto REF 500M
Klipsch Cornwall/Crites/Aletheia Audio
Klisch RC64II
Klipsch SW-115
OPPO BDP-93
Samsung PN64D8000
MSchu18 is offline  
post #1334 of 1346 Old 07-09-2014, 08:13 AM
AVS Special Member
 
Gecko85's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: California
Posts: 1,956
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 24 Post(s)
Liked: 16
What's Up Tiger Lily?, 1966, Woody Allen

This cult film is the spiritual forefather of Mystery Science Theater 3000, although instead of providing running commentary with an occasional voice-over, the entire film is a voice over. Allen purchased the rights to a Japanese spy film ("International Secret Police: Key of Keys"), and re-dubbed all the dialogue...but with a completely different plot. Allen's version of the movie revolves around the stolen recipe for the world's best egg salad. The movie is completely silly, but fun.

Some sample dialogue:

Quote:
High Macha Of Rashpur: "Good afternoon. I am the Grand Exalted High Macha of Raspur, a nonexistent but real-sounding country."
Phil Moscowitz: "Uh-huh."
High Macha Of Rashpur: "Yes. We're on a waiting list. As soon as there's an opening on the map, we're next."
Quote:
Suki Yaki: "I managed to find this dress in there, but not a stitch of underwear."
Phil Moscowitz: "No underwear? I find that very interesting."
Suki Yaki: "Don't excite yourself. I never sleep with a man who owns a dress."
Phil Moscowitz: "Oh, neither do I. I feel exactly the same way."
Gecko85 is online now  
post #1335 of 1346 Old 07-09-2014, 08:24 AM - Thread Starter
One-Man Content Creator
 
wmcclain's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 16,928
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 181 Post(s)
Liked: 321
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gecko85 View Post
What's Up Tiger Lily?, 1966, Woody Allen
It's been many years, and I only remember two lines (from memory):

[Beautiful woman approaches] Hero: "Ah, an oriental".

Hero: "The director has to do his traditional cameo apprearance". [Caucasian couple walk across the scene]. Hero: "Slimebag".

-Bill
wmcclain is online now  
post #1336 of 1346 Old 07-09-2014, 08:33 AM
RUR
Innocent Bystander
 
RUR's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: California Republic
Posts: 2,215
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 33 Post(s)
Liked: 49
"Meet me in the bedroom in five minutes, and bring a cattle prod."

An hysterical movie, replete with great lines.
RUR is offline  
post #1337 of 1346 Old 07-09-2014, 05:34 PM - Thread Starter
One-Man Content Creator
 
wmcclain's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 16,928
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 181 Post(s)
Liked: 321
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.G View Post
Joanne Dru may have been cute but I heard she once put a man's eye out.
I dare you to tell a John Ireland joke.

-Bill
wmcclain is online now  
post #1338 of 1346 Old 07-09-2014, 08:56 PM
AVS Special Member
 
hitchfan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 2,064
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by wmcclain View Post
I dare you to tell a John Ireland joke.

-Bill
I think the only thing most old timers familiar with the John Ireland legend needs is the punchline; "C'mon, John, just take out enough to win."

Or maybe that was Forrest Tucker...
hitchfan is offline  
post #1339 of 1346 Old 07-10-2014, 07:16 AM
AVS Special Member
 
Mr.G's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 3,374
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 48 Post(s)
Liked: 107
Quote:
Originally Posted by hitchfan View Post
I think the only thing most old timers familiar with the John Ireland legend needs is the punchline; "C'mon, John, just take out enough to win."

Or maybe that was Forrest Tucker...
According to The Book of the Penis it was Milton Berle.

"There's always been gossip about movie star penises. Movies stars are the lovers everyone yearns for, and if they're ideal, of course their dicks should be big. But here's what movie star Betty garble is reported to have said, in the 1940s: "They say the two best-hung men in Hollywood are Forrest Tucker and Milton Berle. What a shame - it's never handsome ones. The bigger they are, the homelier."

Gary Griffin, in Penis Enlargement Methods - Fact and Phallusy, has a thirty-page section full of "well-endowed celebrities," half of it devoted to Hollywood. He gets his information from biographies, books of gossip and reports from readers who claim to have been intimate with celebrities. Of Griffin's Hollywood heavies I will list only the dead ones: Humphrey Bogart, Ward Bond, Jack Cassidy, Charlie Chaplin, Gary Cooper, Errol Flynn, Freddy Frank, Cary Grant, William Holden, Rock Hudson, John Ireland, Dean Martin, Groucho Marx, Steve McQueen, Dennis O'Keefe, Walter Pidgeon, Aldo Ray, Frank Sinatra, Franchot Tone, Forrest Tucker."

All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Movies

Mr.G is offline  
post #1340 of 1346 Old 07-10-2014, 09:58 PM
AVS Special Member
 
hitchfan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 2,064
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.G View Post
According to The Book of the Penis it was Milton Berle.
That's right. Guess I got my big celebrities confused.
hitchfan is offline  
post #1341 of 1346 Old 07-11-2014, 10:04 AM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Josh Z's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Planet Boston, source of the spice, Melange.
Posts: 19,911
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 140 Post(s)
Liked: 316
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.G View Post
According to The Book of the Penis it was Milton Berle.

"There's always been gossip about movie star penises. Movies stars are the lovers everyone yearns for, and if they're ideal, of course their dicks should be big. But here's what movie star Betty garble is reported to have said, in the 1940s: "They say the two best-hung men in Hollywood are Forrest Tucker and Milton Berle. What a shame - it's never handsome ones. The bigger they are, the homelier."

Gary Griffin, in Penis Enlargement Methods - Fact and Phallusy, has a thirty-page section full of "well-endowed celebrities," half of it devoted to Hollywood. He gets his information from biographies, books of gossip and reports from readers who claim to have been intimate with celebrities. Of Griffin's Hollywood heavies I will list only the dead ones: Humphrey Bogart, Ward Bond, Jack Cassidy, Charlie Chaplin, Gary Cooper, Errol Flynn, Freddy Frank, Cary Grant, William Holden, Rock Hudson, John Ireland, Dean Martin, Groucho Marx, Steve McQueen, Dennis O'Keefe, Walter Pidgeon, Aldo Ray, Frank Sinatra, Franchot Tone, Forrest Tucker."
So what you're telling me is that not only did someone write a book about celebrity penises, two separate people wrote books about celebrity penises?

Josh Z
Writer/Editor, High-Def Digest (Blog updated daily!)
Curator, Laserdisc Forever

My opinions are my own, and do not necessarily reflect those of my employers.

Josh Z is online now  
post #1342 of 1346 Old 07-11-2014, 01:28 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Mr.G's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 3,374
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 48 Post(s)
Liked: 107
Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh Z View Post
So what you're telling me is that not only did someone write a book about celebrity penises, two separate people wrote books about celebrity penises?
Don't sell the penis academia short. There are more than two books.

All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Movies

Mr.G is offline  
post #1343 of 1346 Old 07-14-2014, 04:26 PM - Thread Starter
One-Man Content Creator
 
wmcclain's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 16,928
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 181 Post(s)
Liked: 321
The Lady from Shanghai (1947), written, produced and directed by Orson Welles.

Quote:
Originally Posted by me

My shark had torn himself from the hook, and the scent, or maybe the stain it was, and him bleeding his life away drove the rest of them mad. Then the beasts began to eat each other. In their frenzy, they ate at themselves. You could feel the lust of murder like a wind stinging your eyes, and you could smell the death, reeking up out of the sea. I never saw anything worse...

Until this little picnic tonight.
A quirky thriller. We get fragments and glimpses of a story -- does the plot actually make sense in the end? -- but are mostly off-balance and as confused as our main character. He's intrigued by a beautiful woman and wants to protect her, but she's married and he doesn't want to get mixed up in that. He's crewing a yacht for people he finds contemptible -- he tells them so -- but he's also afraid of them.

As always, when someone asks you to "pretend" to murder them: run! Otherwise you'll find yourself enduring a bizarrely farcical courtroom drama and a graphically wondrous shootout among the funhouse mirrors at the amusement park.

Misc notes:

  • A box-office disaster.
  • Glenn Anders did not have a large filmography, but his intense, unblinking"George Grisby", simultaneously scary and slappable, is a vivid character.
  • Rita Hayworth does not perspire.
  • Welles thought the opening carriage-in-the-park segment was terrible and would have cut it. He hated the studio's score for the whole film. He had no control over the final cut: about an hour was removed and the footage has been lost.
  • Welles and Hayworth were married but separated at this time. Doing a film together was her attempt at a reconciliation. It didn't work and they divorced shortly after.
  • His approximate Irish accent is hard to take.
  • That's Errol Flynn's yacht.

The Blu-ray is from the TCM Vault Collection. I'm seeing only intermittent hidef detail; the video itself is only 13GB. No subtitles.

The commentary track by Peter Bogdanovich is not really attached to the film as it plays, and he often inserts himself: "I said this, and then Orson said that, and then I said something else..." Still: he gives a lot of production details and inside stories. Welles called himself a "congenital amateur" in movie-making. And: "I never understood women."



-Bill

Last edited by wmcclain; 07-14-2014 at 05:31 PM.
wmcclain is online now  
post #1344 of 1346 Old 07-16-2014, 06:05 AM
AVS Special Member
 
J_Palmer_Cass's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 6,289
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 118 Post(s)
Liked: 83
Quote:
Originally Posted by wmcclain View Post
The Robe (1953), directed by Henry Koster.

The Roman officer who crucified Jesus is driven mad by the memory, but then converts and faces persecution for his new faith.

This is reasonably opulent and features good color and decoration in the costumes and architecture. In older films Roman robes are plain white and the buildings are always pure white marble. I see a strong gold light shining on many scenes; is that an original part of movie, intentional or inadvertent, or has it been color graded by recent knob-twiddlers?

The devout scenes are very solemn. We find that Jesus was late to the Wedding at Cana -- and why -- and get a look at Peter's shame and redemption.

On the down side: the camera work is pretty static and features slow, ponderous movement, apart from some bits with chariots, possibly quoting the silent Ben Hur. This is the first CinemaScope release (although How to Marry a Millionaire was filmed first) and you can see "mumps" in the rare closeups. They stick to medium and long shots for most of the film.

The story is sedate, nothing like as lively as Ben Hur (1959) or even Barabbas (1961).

Richard Burton is fine when calm, but his impassioned eye-rolling madness is just embarrassing. Victor Mature is a more limited actor but actually acquits himself a bit better here.

Lovely Jean Simmons is slender and virginal. From years ago I remember a review of Jay Robinson as mad Caligula: "shrieking and mincing up a storm".

I thought it was a mistake to call Marcellus a "tribune", but now I read there were military tribunes, an entirely different position than the elected office.

Alfred Newman score. It goes oddly off-genre in the adventure music during the rescue from a dungeon.

Available on Blu-ray.



-Bill


You should have noted that The Robe was shot in two aspect ratios just in case Cinemascope was a bust. Two films were shot, one in Cinemascope and the other in standard Academy 4 X 3 (AKA not pan and scan of Cinemascope version). In the extras there is a scene by scene comparison of the differences of the setups required for each aspect ratio. The on screen movement was intended to be made by the actors, and not produced by camera movement and cuts to move across the set.

The Cinemascope extra was also very interesting. The early Cinemascope camera lenses were in short supply and were not all the same quality.
J_Palmer_Cass is offline  
post #1345 of 1346 Old 07-17-2014, 10:41 AM - Thread Starter
One-Man Content Creator
 
wmcclain's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 16,928
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 181 Post(s)
Liked: 321
Two Rode Together (1961), directed by John Ford.

A bleaker, more pessimistic version of The Searchers, tragic and unheroic. In the earlier film John Wayne was trying to get a captive back from the Indians because she was family (near enough), whereas James Stewart is just in it for the money, and is unnecessarily mean about it. Soldier Richard Widmark is more stalwart, but ineffectual.

It's clumsy and uninvolving. They say John Ford was in a bad mental state at the time, didn't want to do the picture and didn't like the result.

Reconsidering: it seems like a better film if you think of it as a story of how civilization collapses when the women and children are taken away. New blood for the Comanches is insanity and a type of life-in-death for the settlers. There is a dark sexual subtext: revulsion of how the women survived, titillation when hearing about it afterward. But it is still very dark: what is broken can't be fixed.

Other good features:

  • James Stewart and Richard Widmark have great buddy chemistry. Their dialogue while just sitting and smoking is the best part of the film.
  • Linda Cristal and Shirley Jones are pleasant to watch.
  • Woody Strode is an impressively fierce warrior.

"White women captured by the Indians" is actually a small Western sub-genre. We also have:


Dances With Wolves might fit too, but by then we've passed into a new era of sensitivity.

Twilight Time Blu-ray.



-Bill
wmcclain is online now  
post #1346 of 1346 Old 07-21-2014, 10:41 AM - Thread Starter
One-Man Content Creator
 
wmcclain's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 16,928
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 181 Post(s)
Liked: 321
The Stranger (1946), directed by Orson Welles.

A nazi war criminal has the perfect new identity as a distinguished professor in a small New England college town. His survival senses start tingling on his wedding day when an old death camp comrade catches up with him and he learns that a G-man has arrived in town. If he is quick and vicious can he still survive? Would you want to be digging a grave in the woods on your wedding night?

This was a rare money-maker for Welles, but a straight thriller was not the type of film he wanted to make, and he didn't think much of it.

As is often the case, Edward G. Robinson is the best thing in the movie. The deep character and gravitas in that observant, ugly face.

Critics at the time were unkind. I seem to like it more than they. The hunter being hunted is always a good plot, with justice remorselessly closing in. As in The Lady from Shanghai (1947) the action finish is dramatic but overblown.

The Kino Blu-ray shows much print damage, variable black levels and whites that are sometimes blown out and too bright. Detail is often good, although I suspect a sharpening technique that also accentuates grain. Commentary track but no subtitles.

Even so, the Kino disc is said to be better than another version from Virgil Films. The film is in the public domain. ClassicFlix has the Kino.



-Bill
wmcclain is online now  
Reply Movies, Concerts, and Music Discussion

Tags
Reviews , Blu Ray Movies , Aliens Blu Ray , The Godfather Collection The Coppola Restoration Blu Ray
Gear in this thread

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off