Search Results for essential

Million Dollar Mermaid (1952) – full review!

August 29, 2014 // 0 Comments

Million Dollar Mermaid (1952) – full review! Directed by Mervyn LeRoy (Random Harvest (1942)) with a screenplay by Everett Freeman this above average Esther Williams vehicle is a biographical drama about Annette Kellerman who despite being born with crippled legs became a championship swimmer in her native Australia achieved notoriety for being the first woman to wear a one-piece bathing suit at a public beach (near Boston) and made [...]

Odds Against Tomorrow (1959) – full review!

August 29, 2014 // 0 Comments

Odds Against Tomorrow (1959) – full review! Directed by Robert Wise (West Side Story (1961) & The Sound of Music (1965)) with a screenplay by Abraham Polonsky (Body and Soul (1947)) and Nelson Gidding (I Want to Live! (1958)) this excellent crime drama stars Ed Begley (Sweet Bird of Youth (1962)) Robert Ryan (Crossfire (1947)) and Harry Belafonte as three would-be bank robbers who find themselves fighting against each other such that [...]

Northwest Rangers (1942)

August 29, 2014 // 0 Comments

Northwest Rangers (1942) As I was watching this I knew Iā€™d seen something very similar to it before but the setting was so different that it took me a while to think of it. It was Manhattan Melodrama (1934) with Clark Gable & William Powell in lieu of James Craig and William Lundigan. That one also had Myrna Loy instead of Patricia Dane and a less prominent actor as the villain (the Assistant DA) than John Carradine. Plus Jack Holt figures [...]

Essential Character Actors

August 29, 2014 // 1 Comment

Essential Character Actors this is a work in progress (and currently male only) please check back later for updates During the studio era character actors were common (and respected) much more so than today. Whether it was MGM Warner Bros. or you name it each company had some stock players that were excellent supporting players whether they were typecast or not. Sometimes it was directors (e.g. like John Ford later copied by Clint Eastwood) who [...]

Tea and Sympathy (1956)

August 29, 2014 // 0 Comments

Tea and Sympathy (1956) Deborah Kerr John Kerr (no relation) and Leif Erickson recreated their stage performances in this censored version of Robert Anderson’s play that was directed by Vincente Minnelli. John Kerr plays Tom Robinson Lee a sensitive young college man whose interests are gardening & reading in lieu of more manly pursuits. His father Herb (Edward Andrews) is rather of ashamed of his son’s behavior which has earned [...]

What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1962)

August 29, 2014 // 0 Comments

What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1962) This really odd horror drama black comedy pairing two former real-life (or would that be reel-life) rival queens of the cinema Bette Davis (in the title role) and Joan Crawford was produced and directed by Robert Aldrich. Based on a novel by Henry Farrell with a screenplay by Lukas Heller it tells the story of two sisters who were formally movie stars in the 1930’s Baby Jane (Davis) being a child [...]

Letter The (1940)

August 29, 2014 // 0 Comments

Letter The (1940) Bette Davis gives her typical powerhouse (and Best Actress Academy Award nominated) performance in this essential drama as a woman accused of killing a man she claims was in self-defense. Herbert Marshall plays her husband who engages his lawyer (James Stephenson his only Oscar nominated performance Supporting) to defend her. Howard Koch adapted W. Somerset Maugham’s play which takes place on a rubber plantation. The film [...]

Fastest Gun Alive The (1956)

August 29, 2014 // 0 Comments

Fastest Gun Alive The (1956) Writer Russell Rouse (Pillow Talk (1959)) directed and co-wrote the screenplay (with Frank Gilroy on whose story “The Last Notch” the film is based) of this Western which delves into this popular titled stereotype like no other before (or since?) featuring Glenn Ford. Since the majority of the interesting drama and tension is contained within the last 15-20 minutes of the film (including a new wrinkle) I [...]

Swing Time (1936)

August 29, 2014 // 0 Comments

Swing Time (1936) One of the best Fred (Astaire) & Ginger (Rogers) musicals (with Top Hat (1935) being the best in my opinion). Astaire (whose character flips a coin that makes him ‘Lucky’ also his nickname) misses his wedding to Betty Furness and then must prove he’s worth enough money to marry her. So he goes to New York with a friend (Victor Moore) in tow where he meets a dance instructor (Rogers) who’s been dating [...]

King and I The (1956)

August 29, 2014 // 0 Comments

King and I The (1956) This essential musical romance drama earned Yul Brynner his Best Actor Oscar (on his only nomination) his co-star Deborah Kerr was also nominated (her third of six unrewarded Best Actress nominations). Directed by Walter Lang this (Richard) Rodgers & (Oscar) Hammerstein II masterpiece earned Academy Awards for its Color Art Direction-Set Decoration & Costume Design Sound and Score. Director Lang received his only [...]
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