The 39 Steps (1935)

August 29, 2014 // 0 Comments

The 39 Steps (1935) One of Alfred Hitchcock’s favorites it was his first to use "the innocent man framed by circumstantial evidence who must run cross-country from police and spies alike in his frantic attempt to clear himself and find the real enemies of the people" a theme which the director would make his trademark. Robert Donat plays that man in this film Madeleine Carroll the woman who helps him. A memorable scene in this [...]

Apache Trail (1942)

August 29, 2014 // 0 Comments

Apache Trail (1942) Directed by Richard Thorpe this Western features Lloyd Nolan as the man in black William Lundigan as his incorruptible brother Donna Reed Anne Ayars Connie Gilchrist and Chill Wills as supporting players in the cast of this Ernest Haycox (story) & Maurice Geraghty treatment. The film begins with hanging Judge Keeley (George Watts) literally riding through town on the stagecoach to pass sentence on whomever the Marshal [...]

Women The (1939)

August 29, 2014 // 0 Comments

Women The (1939) An outstanding all-female cast film directed by ladies director George Cukor about "catty" women rivalries and infidelity. This above average comedy drama features Norma Shearer Joan Crawford Rosalind Russell Mary Boland Paulette Goddard Joan Fontaine Marjorie Main Virginia Grey Ruth Hussey child actress Virginia Weidler Cora Witherspoon Lucile Watson and Hedda Hopper (among others). Shearer is a woman who finds out [...]

Stage Fright (1950) – full review!

August 29, 2014 // 0 Comments

Stage Fright (1950) – full review! Directed and produced by Alfred Hitchcock this average drama has little suspense and one notable spoiler. The screenplay was written by Whitfield Cook from two stories by Selwyn Jepson Man Running and Outrun the Constable; the director’s wife Alma Reville wrote the adaptation. Featuring a cast with Jane Wyman (Johnny Belinda (1948)) and Marlene Dietrich largely playing herself it also features actor [...]

Getting Naked or Crying for an Academy Award or nomination

August 29, 2014 // 0 Comments

Getting Naked or Crying for an Academy Award or nomination When it comes to getting an Academy Award nomination – and even winning the Oscar – actresses who take off their clothes can enhance their chances and actors that cry on screen can improve their odds. Both of these ‘acts’ demonstrate an actor’s “commitment to the role” and they can get rewarded for taking such a risk. Think I’m being cynical read on: Obviously nudity [...]

Edge of Darkness (1943)

August 29, 2014 // 0 Comments

Edge of Darkness (1943) Directed by Lewis Milestone who won Oscars for Two Arabian Knights (1927) and All Quiet on the Western Front (1930) this William Woods novel was adapted by Robert Rossen (All The King’s Men (1949)). It’s about the struggle against the Nazi occupation in Norway during World War II in the spring of 1942. Despite the fact that it’s primarily a propaganda film it’s a very good drama which features [...]

This Happy Breed (1944) – full review!

August 29, 2014 // 0 Comments

This Happy Breed (1944) – full review! After having worked together successfully on the war drama In Which We Serve (1942) producer Noel Coward and director David Lean did so again on this “slice of life” (comedy) drama about a British family; they would repeat their success with Blithe Spirit (1945) and Brief Encounter (1945). This one was based on Coward’s play (and his own life experiences from 1919 to 1939) which was [...]

Adventures of Huckleberry Finn The (1939)

August 29, 2014 // 0 Comments

Adventures of Huckleberry Finn The (1939) Produced by Joseph Mankiewicz and directed by Richard Thorpe with a screenplay by Hugo Butler that was based on the classic novel by Mark Twain this average adventure drama features Mickey Rooney in the title role. Huck lives with the widow Douglass (Elisabeth Risdon) and her sister Miss Watson (Clara Blandick); their Black slave Jim who’s a big part of the story is played by Rex Ingram. [...]

Citizen Kane (1941)

August 29, 2014 // 0 Comments

Citizen Kane (1941) Orson Welles’s masterpiece film is somewhat of an unauthorized biography of publishing tycoon William Randolph Hearst (but don’t believe how he portrays Marion Davies’s character!) including his politics. It stars Welles in the title role Dorothy Comingore Joseph Cotten Agnes Moorehead Ruth Warrick Ray Collins Everett Sloane George Coulouris and Paul Stewart (among others). Herman J. Mankiewicz and Welles [...]

Out of the Fog (1941) – full review!

August 29, 2014 // 0 Comments

Out of the Fog (1941) – full review! Directed by Anatole Litvak (The Snake Pit (1948)) and based on the Irwin Shaw (The Talk of the Town (1942)) play “The Gentle People” this above average drama’s screenplay was co-written by Robert Rossen (All the King’s Men (1949)) Irving G. Thalberg winner Jerry Wald and Richard Macauley. It features an outstanding cast of lead actors and many recognizable character actors as [...]
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