Truth never stopped producer Joe Levine. Not finding in the film the requisite image to encapsulate the struggle of Nevada Smith he just invented one. The iconic poster of Steve McQueen with rifle over his shoulders did not appear in the movie. Yes, in the early part of the picture Nevada Smith trekked through the … Continue reading “Selling Steve McQueen – Pressbook for “Nevada Smith” (1966)”
Half breed Max Sand (Steve McQueen) has little truck with the notion that revenge is a dish best served cold. But he’s too young and raw, far from Lee Marvin’s callous killer in Point Blank (1969), to properly avenge the slaughter of his family by three outlaws. This is a coming-of-age tale with a distinct … Continue reading “Nevada Smith (1966) ****”
A pair of pink knee-length boots, courtesy of adventuress Jennifer (Jill St John), are among the wondrous sights awaiting our band of intrepid explorers. She’s not the only curiosity, Professor Challenger (Claude Rains) is certainly the most obstreperous of archaeologists, aristocrat Hoxton (Michael Rennie) must have a screw loose to keep on resisting the charms … Continue reading “The Lost World (1960) ***”
There’s a saying where I come from – “a big boy did it and ran away” – and that seems to be the approach here, Col Parker (Tom Hanks) to blame for all the ills of Elvis Presley (Austin Butler). Exhilarating when it goes jukebox, capturing Elvis’s electrifying stage presence, anything but when we are … Continue reading “Elvis (2022) *** – Seen at the Cinema”
High concept thrillers that derails two-thirds of the way through. While it’s a battle of wits between German psychiatrist Major Gerber (Rod Taylor) and kidnapped spy Major Pike (James Garner), and between the German and his cynical superior, S.S. chief Schack (Werner Peters), it’s a fascinating insight into the power of mind games, almost slipping … Continue reading “36 Hours (1964) ***”
Most original horror film since Jordan Peele’s Get Out (2017) and sharing that film’s ability to throw the audience off guard by constantly twisting expectations and slowly taking its time to reach an incredible denouement. Be warned, though, it is about child abuse and some of the scenes come down to the knuckle. But it … Continue reading “The Black Phone (2022) **** – Seen at the Cinema”
Watching The Bridge at Remagen sent me back with renewed admiration to John Guillermin’s take on World War One in The Blue Max. Again, a tale of two men battling for supremacy, although in this case they are both on the same side. Flying aces Lt Bruno Sachel (George Peppard) and Willi von Klugerman (Jeremy … Continue reading “The Blue Max (1966) ****”
A million-and-a-half dollars potentially went down the drain when, thanks to the Russian invasion two months into production, producer David L. Wolper had to shift location shooting of World War Two picture The Bridge at Remagen from Czechoslovakia to Italy and Germany. Actors and crew woke up on August 21, 1968, to find their hotel … Continue reading “Behind the Scenes: “The Bridge at Remagen” (1969)”
Superior war film, somewhat underrated. Not just realistic battle scenes, but realistically weary soldiers and taking an even-handed approach to war in the manner of Battle of the Bulge (1965). The Americans want to destroy the bridge to trap 75,000 German soldiers on the wrong side of the Rhine, the German Major Krueger (Robert Vaughn) … Continue reading “The Bridge at Remagen (1969) ****”
These days you need the impetus of an anniversary or the accompaniment of a live orchestra for an old movie to do the rounds on the big screen apart from perennials like It’s a Wonderful Life (1946) at Xmas and Casablanca (1942) on St Valentine’s Day. In attempting to turn a revival into an “event” … Continue reading “How Old Bond Changed New Hollywood”
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