Just finished "Swing Time" with Fred and Ginger on FilmStruck.
For so,e reason, I had never seen this fil all the way through. It has some great Jerome Kern somgs: The way you look tonight Pick yourself up A fine romance
I am going to give "Carefree" another try, but I will need some quite time, which I can't get much of.
I just signed up for a year on FILMSTRUCK. I was just looking through their offerings. I noticed that they have all (or most) of Fred and Ginger's movies in one section.
I like the way they have grouped the movies by Director too. (I wonder if FILMSTRUCK is British, based on their director choices.)
I need to explore Alexander Mackendrick a bit while I have the chance with FilmStruck.
Peter Greenaway is an interesting choice of directors in that The Draughtsman's Contract (1982) and The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover (1989) seem difficult to understand--for me at least. Yet, they both appear in the BFI Top 100 list.)
The Michael Powell (The Archers) films seem like the most complete selection than I have ever seen in one place. Though I have seen many of them, this will give me a chance to see some that I have not seen yet--The Tales of Hoffmann (1951) for example.
I hope they add more directors and more movies in the existing director choices---For example, I ever get to see The Dark at the Top of the Stairs (1960) in digital format? That would be a great addition to the Delbert Mann movie box.
The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner 1962, directed by Tony Richardson, from a short story by Alan Sillitoe, starring Tom Courtenay, Michael Redgrave, Avis Bunnage, Alec McCowen, James Bolam, and in small uncredited roles Edward and James Fox and John Thaw (Inspector Morse). British drama in the kitchen sink realism genre. "A juvenile offender at a tough reform school impresses its governor with his running ability and is encouraged to compete in an upcoming race, but faces ridicule from his peers". It is a drama but with a few humorous bits. Desperate restless young souls of the pre-Beatles era, with social critism. The older generations don't understand the young ones. I thought this was a good movie, that might have lost a bit of itäs bite over the years, and all actors are marvelous. Tom Courtenay won a BAFTA as "Most Promising Newcomer to Leading Film Roles".
Post by neurosturgeon on Mar 14, 2018 18:29:03 GMT
Kijii -FilmStrick does Jane the entire Fred and Ginger collection, including the rarely shown "Roberta" and "The Story Of Cernon and Irene Castle."
I have begged Warner Archive for a release of "The Dark at the Top of the Stairs" and "Ice Palace" so I would love to have them show up.
I do wish their Director collections were complete, but I am grateful for what is their. The Powell/Pressberger films are nice. I have most on DVD or blu-ray, but since I am cut off from my collection, it is so nice to have them available.
I do have a homemade version of DARK AT THE TOP OF THE STAIRS [dubbed from VCR] I made it when I had a VCR to DVD dubbing machine. But, it is in god-awful quality. What worries me about this movie is that if it is not restored and digitalized soon, it will be the one Inge-based movie that got away, and everyone will want to have it to complete their Inge-based library. I keep thinking that there are only a few cast members still alive---Angela Lansbury and/or Shirley Knight come on!!! Go to the UCLA restoration center ASAP.
The same thing may be true with Ferber's Ice Palace. This has a similar epic-like family-saga value to it, much like Feber's other novels. It really is like the "story of Alaska" personified.
However, I only recently saw Saratoga Trunk (1945), and for me, it didn't measure up to the type of Feber stories that I am used to. I found that it disjointed and confusing... I am just not use to that with Feber stories.
I do have a homemade version of DARK AT THE TOP OF THE STAIRS [dubbed from VCR] I made it when I had a VCR to DVD dubbing machine. But, it is in god-awful quality. What worries me about this movie is that if it is not restored and digitalized soon, it will be the one Inge-based movie that got away, and everyone will want to have it to complete their Inge-based library.
The two primary enemies of film preservation - particularly in the case of preprint elements such as original negatives, internegatives (IPs) and interpositives (INs) - are excessive handling and improper storage. In a way, a film like The Dark At the Top Of the Stairs is protected from the first by the very fact of its being out of circulation for so many years: limited or no distribution = limited or no handling.
Produced on acetate-based Eastman "safety film" stock in early 1960, its original negative wouldn't be susceptible to the sort of degradation and disintegration that had plagued nitrocellulose film for decades prior to the 1950s. And although Eastman positive stock has been subject to color fading owing to unstable dyes employed in the printing process, its "monopack" negatives are far less so, given adequate control of factors such as temperature and humidity in their storage environments. Those tasked with the responsibility of maintaining those conditions would have neither knowledge of nor concern for marketing decisions above their pay grade made in far away executive offices, and simply and indiscriminately do the job of caring for all the materials in their charge, whether those of Casablanca or a film of which few have ever heard.
So, the short "good news" is that there's little reason to fear The Dark At the Top Of the Stairs will become one "that got away;" the "bad news" is that there's no news at all on Warner Home Video and/or Inge estate issues (or whatever they are) that have kept it away from home video and other distribution for so long.
Bone Tomahawk (2015, Zahler, on DVD) Western-horror film as small town sheriff Kurt Russell heads a posse to rescue townspeople kidnapped by cannibals. Kurt Russell - cannibals - western - I'm all over that!
Quite suspenseful, I was pleasantly surprised. The cast was great for a small budget gore-fest - Kurt Russell, Richard Jenkins (!) and Patrick Wilson were all really good. As was Matthew Fox as a racist who joins the posse. The dialogue was damn good, the movie takes its time and there's lots of entertaining, inane dialogue between these cowpokes. Jenkins in particular had some funny lines. Shot in 21 days with a budget of 1.8 million, great result.
My wife watched this against her better judgement (and mine), the suspense kept her watching, but as gory a scene as you'll ever watch near movie's end really pissed her off, and I had to look away, too. That was gross but I knew this director's reputation, so overall a thumbs up from me 8/10.
Liked this more than this writer-director's Brawl in Cell Block 99 which wasn't bad (6/10) and which was an even gorier movie.
I watched this^ for the first time only this year, after recording it on TV. It was probably a month ago now that I saw it. While it did feel 'small budget', I think that was part of why I liked it. It wasn't 'overblown', there wasn't heaps of CGI flying about, and it wasn't full on big name actors. It felt more 'low key' (though I'm not sure if that's exactly the right word for it).
There were things I liked and disliked about the four main guy characters. There were times I couldn't stand them, and other times I felt sympathy for them. The biggest surprise was Matthew Fox. No, he wasn't a good person, but I liked that he cared about his horse (I just always appreciate characters in shows/movies who care about animals). I especially appreciated how they didn't actually show the shooting. It was focused entirely on him. I've been sick of movies/shows having way too much animal death for quite a long time now, so although this movie *did* have that, I'm glad they showed some restraint with it (and made the animal at least have some significance in the film/for a character - whereas most movies don't care enough to).
It really did a good job of creating tension. I know some might've perceived the first half as 'slow/boring' and just wanted to get to the gorefest, but I actually really liked all the set-up, and then the journeying. It did make the end somewhat of a contrast with all the violence, but on the whole I thought it was a well-done film. I won't necessarily be watching it again anytime soon, but I am glad that I watched it at least once.
Lou Clark: “You know what, Sharon? You can stick your premier badge right up your relaxed dining area.”
Post by Chalice_Of_Evil on Mar 15, 2018 7:31:41 GMT
Just finished watching Tomb Raider at the theatre this morning.
I quite enjoyed it. It has a very different ‘feel’ to the Angelina Jolie movies (which is to be expected, since it’s based on the 2013 reboot video game). Easily the best thing about the whole movie is Alicia Vikander and her performance as a very different Lara Croft than the one Angelina Jolie portrayed before her.
All her training certainly shows onscreen...
The film did have some ‘humour’, but it thankfully wasn’t try to be laugh-a-minute-‘funny’ like it seems so many movies these days are (even when it’s severely out of place). It’s just a light sprinkling of some amusing comments here and there, and I was very relieved that Nick Frost wasn’t too heavily featured in the film (I don’t hate him, but can only take his typical sort of character in small doses – which, luckily, was the case here).
I liked Lara with Daniel Wu’s Lu Ren. I was worried for his character for a bit, but they wisely didn’t do what I thought they might’ve. The villain was so-so, but at least he wasn’t a snarky/wisecracking villain (which I’ve grown so tired of lately).
There were some instances where people near me in the audience predicted what the next line of dialogue in a certain scene would be and were proven right - this led me to doing the same at one point (and I too was correct with my guess of what someone would say). I also predicted...
How Lara would dispose of the villain and what the final scene of the movie would be...
Given that we hadn’t gotten that^ scene from the trailer earlier in the movie, when it got to near the end of the film I realized that it would wind up being in the credits.
There was no scene after the credits finished (at least none that I saw, as I stuck around just to check).
There were some genuinely effective ‘jump’ moments in the movie, and even a nice ‘horror’ element too.
I thought this was the first really good/solid/well-done movie based on a video game that I’ve seen...probably ever (there's maybe been one or two that I haven't minded, but I'd freely admit they weren't 'great'). I do hope there’s more of these films with Alicia Vikander in the lead. Though I am worried that the critics seemingly being against every video game movie ever made will put people off and therefore prevent any more films being made. Oh well, if there's no more, at least there'll always be this one to enjoy. I gave it 8/10.
Last Edit: Mar 15, 2018 8:14:34 GMT by Chalice_Of_Evil: Spoiler tags weren't working properly.
Lou Clark: “You know what, Sharon? You can stick your premier badge right up your relaxed dining area.”
I had a Blu Ray binge, watching an Eastwood triple feature. I originally saw all three of these films on the big screen back in the day, and had watched them on DVD - when televisions came in 4.3., but these were first time Blu Ray viewings. Of course the brilliant MYSTIC RIVER was the big daddy of the bunch, but I enjoyed them all again.
The Horse Soldiers (1959) I found Sergeant Rutledge (1960) to be so interesting that it put me into a John Ford mood. While The Horse Soldiers is not nearly as interesting and dramatic as Sergeant Rutledge, itis still entertaining in its own way, with lots of unexpected incidents occurring along the path of carrying out General Grant's orders and the overall mission.
Colonel John Marlowe (John Wayne) is ordered by the Union generals to lead his army 300 miles into the Confederacy, where they are to sabotage and disrupt the vital railway supply town of Newton Station as much as possible. After a disastrous few months of lost battles and heavy casualties, the Union generals are determined to swing the battle back in their favour before the arrival of winter. Marlowe is unhappy to learn that his orders include allowing army surgeon Major Kendall (William Holden) along on the mission. Since the death of his wife at the hands of two blundering surgeons, Marlowe has had little respect for those in the medical profession. To further complicate matters, a feisty Southern belle, Hannah Hunter (Constance Towers) with Confederate sympathies, overhears Marlowe informing his men that Newton Station is the target, and that once the town has been raided the Union forces plan to head for the safety of Baton Rouge. In order to secure her silence, Marlowe has to take her prisoner and suffer her sharp Southern tongue (plus escape attempts) during the trip.
The Horse Soldiers is filmed in loving detail, with gorgeous autumnal backdrops. Its story is very interesting, especially the volatile relationship between Wayne and Holden, and the mission itself provides excitements along the way. In particular, a street battle at Newton Station is memorable, as is a scene later in the film when the Union soldiers come under attack from an army of Confederate army cadets still at schoolboy age. Towers' character is written as a very cunning and feisty woman, who disguises her attributes by coming across as a melodramatic, gossipy airhead. Towers plays the part well, but because of how she's encouraged to handle the role she becomes rather irritating too. One disappointing moment in the film comes when Wayne and Holden reach breaking-point with each other and ride off to a secluded glade to slug it out. The sequence is set to be a real humdinger, but is curiously cut short by the arrival of the enemy forces. On the whole, though, The Horse Soldiers is a good, solid Civil War entertainment, well worth a look.
[above quote from the IMDb User Review by barnabyrudge]
Dirty Rotten Scoundrels 1988, directed by Framk Oz, starring Michael Caine, Steve Martin, Glenne Headly, Anton Rodgers, Barbara Harris, Ian McDiarmid (Star Wars' Palpatine), based on Stanley Shapiro and Paul Henning's earlier script for Bedtime Story 1964. It's about rivaling con-men on the French Riviera. Civilized comedy entertainment with two different acting styles in the male leads, With Michael Caine as the seasoned slimy refined articulate con-man, against a vulgar self assured newcomer, played by Steve Martin. Yes, since they are con-men, it's also very immoral, something that in this case was very refreshing.
Post by ZolotoyRetriever on Mar 15, 2018 18:56:16 GMT
Stranger on the Third Floor (1940), featured on TCM's "Noir Alley" hosted by Eddie Muller.
Enjoyed the film: it had a dark, ominous vibe with stylish B&W camera work throughout. John McGuire, Margaret Tallichet, Peter Lorre and Elisha Cook, Jr. were all in good form. The ending felt a bit rushed, and the final moment seemed too breezy and lighthearted when juxtaposed with the preceding hour or so, but it was still a good watch.
Don't mess with me, man! I know karate, judo, ju-jitsu... and several other Japanese words.
I love that movie, Tele—hilarious (the scene with the wheelchair is brilliant), and I kicked myself the first time I saw it for not guessing that final twist. Excellent choice for Sir Michael’s birthday.
I recently saw Gosford Park, which is… Well.
I’m not even sure what I think of it, except that it’s very well-done and well-mounted—perhaps a little too much? Altman’s (and Andrew Dunn’s) camera gives us some beautiful and luscious sequences, and Altman certainly knew his way around an ensemble cast (as was his wont); as Ebert put it, we go into the movie all confused about who these people are and, by the end, feel that we know each individual. Ironically, while Altman said that he was inspired by Renoir (Rules of the Game), he lacked Renoir’s warmth and humanism; I thought Buffalo Bill and the Indians, in particular, failed by being utterly detached from his characters.
The acting’s excellent, as to be expected; Maggie Smith’s a hoot, and Richard E. Grant, Jeremy Northam, and Kelly Macdonald are wonderful. Stephen Fry’s moronic inspector is hilarious as well—but I’m not sure the hilarity quite works, as it inserts full-blown comedy into a largely serious take on Upstairs, Downstairs. (We should distinguish Dame Maggie’s dry wit from Fry’s comic absurdity; the former fits the mood, but the latter I’m not too sure about.) Helen Mirren is very good but doesn’t have much of an opportunity to show it until the end. And Alan Bates makes for a marvellous butler.
So, then, where are we? I think it’s good—impressive, shall we say? But it’s not the sort of thing I really like: the Upstairs, Downstairs/Downton Abbey look at social relations, all wallowing in titles and class-consciousness. There’s an excellent scene in which the guests’ dinner is contrasted with the servants’ (and an equally good one in which Jeremy Northam’s Ivor Novello plays the piano and the servants listen in and dance), but that’s what I mean; I was impressed by the sequences, the camerawork, the mounting, but I’m not sure it all hangs together, especially as the story seems fairly dull, all in all. Perhaps I’m just immune to the charms of these kinds of stories. Yeah, I know, far too subjective, but that was my reaction; it just didn’t do anything for me.
(Here I am, throwing all my thoughts out in a clump—sorry about that, folks.)