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For the western film Shalako, released October 7, 1968 in the USA.
Scenes from Perry Mason - The Case of the Mythical Monkey, originally broadcast February 27, 1960.
Beverly Garland was also the lead in The Alligator People, 1959
Now, Voyager, 1942
Bardot photos by Douglas Kirkland, 1965.
Orson Welles final studio film is often called the ultimate "B Movie" but it's hardly that (look at the cast: you can't get those names with B-movie dollars). On the other hand it has a schlocky, pulp-noir feel around the edges that makes you think of other B-movie thrillers (and not to the detriment of Touch of Evil, either, as it is simply a superior work by any Hollywood movie standard, A-or-B. It's like Mozart showing Salieri how to better play Salieri's own tune, a key scene in Amadeus.)
Charlton Heston gives a solid performance as a Mexican detective. This casting is made into a joke in Tim Burton's Ed Wood film, but if you watch TOE you see Welles' getting work out of Heston that makes you wish Orson had helmed a few of those gigantic Heston epics of the 1960s. The Agony and the Ecstasy comes to mind, a film about a freelance artist - Michelangelo - just simply trying to get paid, something Orson Welles knew plenty about.
Janet Leigh is onscreen in TOE and you realize that in an era in which Hollywood was awash with Marilyn Monroe variations, Leigh is blond and full-figured but never even close to being a Monroe imitation. She's sharp and clear about what she is doing, and she is the other half of Welle's story, which is essentially about a guy trying to (literally) save his marriage and his wife (she needs saving, too, because a rather funny - but dangerous - Akim Tamiroff is trying to frame her. He wants to wreck the investigation being co-piloted by Heston's Mexican detective and Welles pudgy American detective.)
The Great Ziegfield 1936
James Gleason and Edna May Oliver, usually supporting players in a hundred other classic Hollywood films, have the leads in this short murder mystery (65 minute) which mostly plays out at the New York City Aquarium
Gleason is a seasoned police detective called in to look at a corpse found in an aquarium tank (more corpses will follow as the story progresses) and Edna May Oliver is a school teacher leading a group of children on a field trip when the killing occurs.
As the police begin making slip-shod conclusions based on circumstantial evidence, Edna May steps in and begins straightening out the mess will astute observations. Impressed, James Gleason's detective starts to get a little smitten at the prodigious brain power of this spinsterish school marm.
A lot of snappy comedy (both leads have plenty of 1930s style sardonic patter) is mixed in with the body count, and both Oliver and Gleason get to mug at the camera with abandon.
Photo from Female on the Beach, 1955
Stanley Kubrick's second film, and generally considered his first real pro movie, is a fast-action, 84 minute analytical story of a racetrack robbery.
Kubrick's onscreen tale uses shifting time periods, back and forth, to completely chronicle from start to finish the exploits of a team of crooks led by Sterling Hayden, who have worked out a perfect plan to heist $2 million dollars from the Landsdowne Racetrack in California.
"Crime does not pay" doesn't adequately cover what goes horribly wrong with the execution of the plan, which moves with clock-like precision up until the point it runs head-on into a few minor details involving a cuckolded husband, petty crooks who want to get in on the take, cheap pawn-shop luggage goods, an innocuous little poodle dog, and wind.
Sterling Hayden (as Johnny Clay) and Coleen Gray (as girlfriend Fay) are the story leads, but the rest of the cast get a lot of screen time in Kubrick's script co-written with Jim Thompson and adapted from the novel Clean Break by Lionel White.
Marie Windsor appears as Sherry Peatty, the wife of nervous racetrack employee Elisha Cook Jr (as George Peatty). Windsor looks to be about 6 inches taller than Cook, and she turns and twists him like a cat with a mostly uninteresting mouse caught in her claws. She's a bored wife with bigger plans in mind involving another man, and when she learns her husband may have a hand in a lucrative robbery, she thinks the cash will be her way to get free. Her dialogue is loaded with irony, most of which sails over the head of Cook's character. The double irony is that her secret paramour has her twisted up more or less the same way she has Cook.
Kubrick uses a flat and straight-forward narrative voice (supplied by Art Gilmore) which notes the passage of time, the shifts backwards into flashback, and to confirm obvious scenes much like a caption box does on a comic book page. The style is slightly stentorian and reminds one of the TV show Dragnet.
Though now categorized as a film noir, The Killing is really a straight-forward gangster movie, but without the gangsters. Hayden's robbers all seem like generally likeable characters (well, not horse-assassin Nikki Arcane, played by an off-kilter Timothy Carey), but the rest are simple men who are corrupt in a simple way and treat the heist like an odd job that will hopefully help them pay off bills, improve things with their spouses, etc.
The photography by Lucien Ballard is a different matter, as a lot of interior scenes are shot with single light sources, creating black, boxed-in scenes that registers immediately to our eyes as true film noir according to modern fashion. But Kubricks story is really as old as Greek tragedy.
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The 1959 film based on the Tennessee Williams play. More on Suddenly Last Summer
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3 Days of the Conder, 1975 - Robert Redford as CIA analyst Joe Turner, trapped between warring factions within the CIA itself. Confused by why everyone is shooting at him, he goes on the run with kidnapped Faye Dunnaway in tow.
Easy Living, 1937 - Jean Arthur is the poor Mary Smith who is suddenly the object of every salesman in town trying to gain access to the wealthy, all because of her impromptu friendship with millionaire investor J. B. Ball (Edward Arnold) who she meets by accident when he tosses his wife's fur coat off the top of an apartment building. Classic screwball comedy with script from Preston Sturges.
The Alligator People, 1959 - Tragic case of a man slowly becoming an alligator, and his determined wife (Beverly Garland) who wants to find him (he's in hiding) and get answers. With Lon Chaney Jr as a maniacal alligator hunter in the bayou. Appeared the same year as the famous Elizabeth Taylor film Suddenly Last Summer, and shares many remarkable similarities.
Heaven Knows, Mr Allison - 1957 - Deborah Kerr and Robert Mitchum. He's a marine and she's a nun on a Japanese occupied island during World War II.
The Quiet Man, 1952 - John Ford's comic masterpiece (which he was afraid he had botched while filming it in Ireland) with John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara as newlyweds who must battle their village and themselves to achieve any peace.
Bachelor Mother 1939 - He's (Niven) the son of the owner (Coburn) of a department store who thinks he's doing a good deed by reuniting an employee (Ginger Rogers) with her child given up to an orphanage. Only the kid isn't hers, and nothing she does can convince anyone.
The Lady Eve - 1941 - Preston Sturges directed this most stately of his farcical comedies as a direct challenge to tailor a film around the wit of Barbara Stanwyck. He provides so much ammo she needs to play two characters in the tale, with a befuddled Henry Fonda in tow.
Night of the Hunter 1955 - British arch-actor Charles Laughton directed only one film, and it features Robert Mitchum as a demented and homicidal preacher (with "love" and "hate" tattooed upon his hands) who is trying to chase down a pair of orphaned children who know the location of hidden bank loot. The only thing standing in his way is a determined Lillian Gish and her shotgun.
China Seas - 1935 w/Clark Gable and Jean Harlow - He's a rugged steam ship captain who wants to upgrade from the trampy Miss Harlow to the respectable Rosiland Russell. But pirates, a typhoon and a treacherous Wallace Berry turn Gable's world upside-down.
Jaws vs. The Creature from the Black Lagoon - Surface similarities between the two films and the sub-genre of "scuba-movies" from the 1950s.
Dracula vs Dracula - English & Spanish versions - The stylish similarities and differences between Tod Browning's 1931 king vampire film and the version shot at night on the same set, in Spanish, by a different director.