Irene DUnneHurricaneDorothy Lamour - HurricaneHurricane The Ladykillers 1955 Orfeo and Mira - Black OrpheusBlack Orpheus - 1959Black Orpheus - 1959 Costello and Mary Wickes - Who Done It Who Done It 1942Louise Allbritton 1942 - Who Done ItLouise Allbritton - Who Done ItOrson Welles - Chimes at MidnightOrson Welles The Viking Queen 1967


Black Orpheus - 1959

Black Orpheus 1959

Black Orpheus - Released December 21, 1959. Directed by Marcel Camus

It's Carnaval time in Brazil, but with the tragedy of Orfeo and Eurydice (she dies and he tries to get her back from the underworld) told as the two lovers are separated and reunited, with a propulsive Bossa Nova soundtrack.

Black Orpheus 1959Black Orpheus 1959Black Orpheus 1959Black Orpheus 1959Black Orpheus 1959

Who Done It?- 1942

Mary Wickes with Lou Costello

Who Done It? - Released November 6, 1942. Directed by Erie C.Kenton

Who DOne It 1942Lou Costello 1942Who Done It ? 1942

Jean Harlow - 1933

Jean Harlow Bombshell

Bombshell - Released October 13, 1933. Directed by Victor Fleming

Marilyn Monroe

Marilyn Monroe Korea

The Black Book - 1949

Reign of Terror - aka The Black Book 1949

The Black Book - Released October 15, 1949. Directed by Anthony Mann

Also known as The Reign of Terror, this 89 minute film is a taunt action-historical drama about the intrigue around French Revolution leader Robespierre, and especially about a 'black book' in which he keeps lists of the names of people who he counts as "for" the revolution and "against" the revolution, and being 'against' is a one way ticket to the guillotine. Incidentally, Robespierre seems confused about whether he himself is the personification of the Revolution or an actual human being, as anyone with the slightest opposition to him is immediately branded a traitor "to the revolution."

Director Anthony Mann populates Paris with shadows and boxed-in rooms where people move in the darkness trying to survive the collapse of political and popular sanity, or to just come out on top amid the political maneuvering. Clever camera work and a tight script make this film a demi-noir/historical film of the first calibre.

The cast is very good. Robert Cummings plays indignation well (and has plenty of opportunities to show it as events unfold). Arlene Dahl as a seemingly two-faced woman playing both sides against the middle is actually about as pure a hero as we can get in this tale. Richard Basehart presents Robespierre as nuts, though it is presented as cooly and seriously as possible (in a scene where a woman is pleading for the life of her husband and appeals to God, Robespierre jealously responds "the Revolution abolished God, now there is only the will of the people!" And based on how Mann presents the Comintern of France, the will of the people is to murder as many people as possible).

The best thing of all in the cast of The Black Book is probably Arnold Moss as the frequently-smiling, humor-tinged, but deadly-as-a-snake chief of secret police, Fouche, who, besides carrying out his duties as co-executioner with Robespierre, is seriously concerned his name might be the in the "Black Book" too.

Unfortunately, it appears at present only beaten-up copies of the film print are in circulation, including an edited and chopped up version which circulates as a free download around the internet.

Reign of Terror - aka The Black Book 1949Reign of Terror - aka The Black Book 1949Reign of Terror - aka The Black Book 1949Reign of Terror - aka The Black Book 1949

Adolphe Menjou

Adolphe Menjou

Carole Lombard

Carole Lombard

The Viking Queen - 1967

The Viking Queen - 1967

The Viking Queen - released March 25, 1967. Directed by Dan Chaffey

"They can handle their chariots, I'll say that for these Britons"

Hammer Films does for Britain-Roman history what was more or less the "scene" in 1967 London between the Mods, Hippies and the Establishment: tension and misunderstandings. The beautiful Finnish model Carita stars as the mixed-blood Viking/British Queen who battles the Roman occupation, but in between has fallen in love with the Roman leader (Don Murray). Druids and Romans don't mix well in this sometimes historical epic, sometimes schlocky exploitation film from the horror film studio known for ace costuming and art direction (plenty here in The Viking Queen), but the script doesn't always live up to director Chaffey's inventive effortsto overcome a limited budget.

More The Viking Queen - 1967

The Viking Queen - 1967The Viking Queen - 1967The Viking Queen - 1967

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