Review older films here: 1979 and earlier - Page 63 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
Forum Jump: 
 316Likes
Reply
 
Thread Tools
post #1861 of 1868 Old 05-25-2017, 04:14 AM - Thread Starter
One-Man Content Creator
 
wmcclain's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 21,736
Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3003 Post(s)
Liked: 2273
This was Laird Cregar's last film. A tragic case, he was closeted gay man, very conflicted, large framed with a poor self-image. As said, dropping all that weight probably killed him.

Everyone who worked with him remembered his intense focus and great talent.

Vincent Price was a friend and gave the eulogy at his funeral. Much of the work Price got in the next few years probably would have been the "Laird Cregar" role if he had lived.

-Bill
ChromeJob likes this.

Review older films here: 1979 and earlier | 1980s | 1990s | Combined reviews: Strange Picture Scroll
Unofficial OPPO FAQS: UDP-203 | BDP-103 | BDP-93 | BDP-83 | BDP-80    
wmcclain is online now  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #1862 of 1868 Old 05-25-2017, 09:03 AM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
ChromeJob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: N. Carolina
Posts: 2,493
Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1041 Post(s)
Liked: 498
Send a message via Yahoo to ChromeJob Send a message via Skype™ to ChromeJob
I believe I have that "Concerto Macabre" on one of fine Charles Gerhardt and National Philharmonic film score albums from the 70s (remastered for CDs in Dolby Surround). Have to see the film now, I'd watch Linda Darnell doing anything. I'd watch her doing nothing, in fact.
wmcclain likes this.

“Phil? Phil Connors?!”
Are ya new here? Please read FAQs and forum stickies. Like posts that help you. Don't ask a question and then disappear.
A: Yamaha RX-V775. Bose 401 mains, 301 Series III surrounds, Yamaha NS-C444 center, Hsu VTF-2 Mk4.
V: Samsung UN40ES6150, Panasonic DMP-BDT215, Yamaha DVD-S550. Apple TV 4gen. Chromecast 1gen.
ChromeJob is online now  
post #1863 of 1868 Old 05-26-2017, 05:09 AM - Thread Starter
One-Man Content Creator
 
wmcclain's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 21,736
Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3003 Post(s)
Liked: 2273
The Locket (1946), directed by John Brahm.

An unusual women's noir thriller: our central character is a mystery woman and the story is about her and her men. She seems too perfect, and in fact has a flaw: she takes jewelry and sometimes leaves a body behind. She doesn't seem to remember. Is she an exceptionally good liar, or does she (like many of us) have a creative memory, or is she evil or amoral, or just mentally ill?

The story unfolds in nested flashbacks: from her wedding day, back to a previous marriage with a psychiatrist, then back to a romance with tough guy painter Robert Mitchum, then back to a childhood incident of yearning and humiliation. Incredibly, after all the flashbacks are unwound, the oldest and newest part of the plot are ingeniously linked together.

(The only other film I recall having such deeply nested flashbacks is Passage to Marseille (1944)).

I haven't seen much of Laraine Day, but she was very impressive when featured, for example as co-star in Hitchcock's Foreign Correspondent (1940). She is amazing here and I wonder that she didn't become a major star. Her beauty is like a fortress, protecting impenetrable secrets.

The segment with Mitchum gets the greatest amount of time and they are good together.

I don't know why I had never seen this before; it is an exceptional effort. I've been seeing quite a few films by director John Brahm lately and he always delivers a superior treatment.

Cinematographer Nicholas Musuraca is not as famous as some, working on genre movies for Val Lewton as well as notable noir like Out of the Past (1947), but I'm always on the lookout for him these days. Here his lighting and composition are just stunning.

Musuraca began his Hollywood career as a chauffeur during the silent era; he ended it working on the TV series F Troop.

Melodramatic score by Roy Webb.

Available on DVD.



-Bill
ChromeJob likes this.

Review older films here: 1979 and earlier | 1980s | 1990s | Combined reviews: Strange Picture Scroll
Unofficial OPPO FAQS: UDP-203 | BDP-103 | BDP-93 | BDP-83 | BDP-80    
wmcclain is online now  
 
post #1864 of 1868 Old Yesterday, 05:44 AM - Thread Starter
One-Man Content Creator
 
wmcclain's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 21,736
Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3003 Post(s)
Liked: 2273
The Mad Magician (1954), directed by John Brahm.

The craftsman who invents new stage magic tricks wants to perform them himself, but his conniving employer and another magician won't allow it. Murder is the solution, but getting away with it is a lot of work. One thing leads to another, of course.

A favorite bit: an arrogant magician struts around the room, dictating terms, while Vincent Price coolly watches, unconcerned. The door to the workroom is locked and the visitor is a fool dancing on the edge of the grave.

A quick followup to House of Wax (1953): 3D again, Price returns, same writer and cinematographer, and the artist in his workshop looks very similar in both films:



Saving money by going black-and-white. Only 72 minutes long.

John Brahm directs this time and he recycles elements from his earlier films: the mysterious, dangerous tenant from The Lodger (1944) and disposing of a body on a giant bonfire as in Hangover Square (1945).

Brahm did not think much of the picture and it is the lightest of his thriller series.

Price appears very fit, still with those leading man looks, and said he had never been in such good shape. Mad murderer that he is, we are on his side, all his victims being so unlikable.

Patrick O'Neal's first feature film; he'd done TV and theater before. With Eva Gabor, who is quite a dish.

We have a few gimmicky 3D exploitation moments, but otherwise the composition in depth is nicely done.

Available in 3D Blu-ray from Twilight Time. Even for 2D viewing this is probably the first time the correct aspect ratio has been available for home viewers.

Extras include an enthusiastic commentary track by two Twilight Time regulars, one who knew Price for many years and always has great stories about him. Also with two Three Stooges shorts in 3D.



-Bill

Review older films here: 1979 and earlier | 1980s | 1990s | Combined reviews: Strange Picture Scroll
Unofficial OPPO FAQS: UDP-203 | BDP-103 | BDP-93 | BDP-83 | BDP-80    
wmcclain is online now  
post #1865 of 1868 Old Yesterday, 05:49 AM - Thread Starter
One-Man Content Creator
 
wmcclain's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 21,736
Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3003 Post(s)
Liked: 2273
That completes my short series on director John Brahm. As mentioned, I reviewed The Brasher Doubloon (1947) a few years ago.

I'll keep an eye out for others, but I think this covers his best known feature film work.

-Bill
ChromeJob likes this.

Review older films here: 1979 and earlier | 1980s | 1990s | Combined reviews: Strange Picture Scroll
Unofficial OPPO FAQS: UDP-203 | BDP-103 | BDP-93 | BDP-83 | BDP-80    
wmcclain is online now  
post #1866 of 1868 Old Yesterday, 05:43 PM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
ChromeJob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: N. Carolina
Posts: 2,493
Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1041 Post(s)
Liked: 498
Send a message via Yahoo to ChromeJob Send a message via Skype™ to ChromeJob
I was going to overlook The Mad Magician, but perhaps not now. Price was great.[1] Screen Archives Entertainment puts the TT titles on sale regularly, but you have to be careful, some titles (e.g. Harryhausen's First Men In The Moon) sell out fast and unexpectedly. Almost always have an isolated music track, which in the case of Journey To The Center Of the Earth is worth the price of the disc alone.

[1] And a very sweet man. My father went to prep school with him — that old cliché, "they were bunkies" — and my mother met him when, I think the story goes, he once came backstage at The Interplayers, the rep theater my parents were members of in the late 1950s, early 60s in San Francisco. She said he stepped back onto her foot accidentally, and was so gentle and apologetic she said it stopped hurting. Wish I'd been able to meet him just once and thank him for all his great film roles.
wmcclain likes this.

“Phil? Phil Connors?!”
Are ya new here? Please read FAQs and forum stickies. Like posts that help you. Don't ask a question and then disappear.
A: Yamaha RX-V775. Bose 401 mains, 301 Series III surrounds, Yamaha NS-C444 center, Hsu VTF-2 Mk4.
V: Samsung UN40ES6150, Panasonic DMP-BDT215, Yamaha DVD-S550. Apple TV 4gen. Chromecast 1gen.
ChromeJob is online now  
post #1867 of 1868 Old Today, 06:01 PM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
Herve's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,196
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 174 Post(s)
Liked: 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by wmcclain View Post
Seven Days in May (1964), directed by John Frankenheimer.

A nice mix of detective story and political thriller, my favorite. How quickly can Kirk Douglas come to believe that a military coup is scheduled for the weekend, how to convince the president, and how to stop it?

It's a great cast but the two utterly believable performances are Fredric March as the President and Martin Balsam as his chief of staff. They could be those people.

Burt Lancaster is the perfect soldier, brave, precise and scrupulously if pointedly polite, but also our egomaniac villain.

Ava Gardner is a love-lorn ex-girlfriend and Edmond O'Brien the hard-drinking senior senator from Georgia who is on the side of the angels.

John Houseman had been a long-time producer. At age 62 he got his first real acting part as the patrician admiral who will only bet on a sure thing.

Screenplay by Rod Serling; now and then I can hear his voice when the characters start to lecture.

Jerry Goldsmith score.

Available on DVD with a relaxed, conversational commentary track by the director. As always he lavishes praise on his cast and crew. He collects people who are dedicated and hard working. He says:

  • The picket riot at the beginning was staged with amateurs and quickly got too real.
  • They had permission to shoot outside the White House and photograph the interior for their own set construction because JFK and his press secretary Pierre Salinger had enjoyed The Manchurian Candidate (1962). (Think about that...)
  • Fredric March was one of the two finest actors he knew, and he didn't name the other.

Where's the Blu-ray?



-Bill
After all these years, the Blu Ray version of "Seven Days In May" was released on May 2, 2017!
http://www.blu-ray.com/movies/Seven-...Blu-ray/42428/

Even though I'm a penny-pinching tightwad 90% of the time, the moment I discovered that the BD is available, I did not hesitate for one second to pay a ridiculous amount of money for this more-relevent-than-ever classic. (The Donald should definitely see this one!)

According to the above link's reviewer, it's a great looking and sounding blu-ray and my wife and I very much look forward to enjoying it once again. I may even light up a "cigarette" for that very special occasion.
Herve is online now  
post #1868 of 1868 Old Today, 07:28 PM
AVS Forum Addicted Member
 
gwsat's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Tulsa
Posts: 18,606
Mentioned: 68 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2937 Post(s)
Liked: 3291
Bill -- You have me considering buying the newly released Seven Days in May BD. It is a fine film with a great cast. I thought its writer, Rod Serling, was a genius. It's a shame he died so young.

HT setup: Sony 75XBR X940D UHD HDR TV; Kaleidescape Strato Movie Server 6 TB; Yamaha RX-A3060 AV receiver; Sonamp 2-1 2channel 100W power amp; Crestron Control System; 2 Rythmik FV18 subwoofers, 6 Hsu HB-1 Bookshelf speakers, 1 Hsu HC-1 Center speaker, 4 Focal ICW8 in-ceiling Atmos speakers; Oppo UDP-203 4K HDR BD player; Mac Mini HTPC. TiVO Bolt 1TB DVR; TiVo Premiere Elite 2 TB DVR; Roku Premiere+
gwsat is online now  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
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



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