9 items from 2014
Olive Films releases classics old and new (but mostly old) on a monthly basis, and it’s not uncommon to find pockets of a theme at times — same actors, similar genre, etc. — and their selection of titles that hit shelves this week are no different. The seven films can be broken into two groups as four of them are film noir examples from the late ’40s and early ’50s, and the three more recent titles are all directed by Otto Preminger. My exposure to both is not nearly as deep as I’d like, so these offered up a great sampling of the noir genre and Preminger’s resume. Three of the films are genuinely fantastic, but none of the seven seem to enjoy wide popularity — this is somewhat baffling when you look at the powerhouse casts including the likes of Alan Ladd, Charlton Heston, Burt Lancaster, William Holden, Michael Caine and others. Keep »
- Rob Hunter
Welcome back to This Week In Discs! If you see something you like, click on the title to buy it from Amazon. Hurry Sundown Henry Warren (Michael Caine) is a landowner on the brink of making a big deal, but there are still two plots of land he needs to acquire. One belongs to a white relative’s family, and the other belongs to a black family whose lineage traces back to time spent as slaves to Mrs. Warren’s (Jane Fonda) relatives. Those times have passed, but 1940’s Georgia isn’t that much more enlightened, and as Warren’s efforts conflict with those of two families struggling to make the most of their homes and farmland racial tensions and civil expectations are tested. Director Otto Preminger‘s all-star look at Southern relations leans heavily towards melodrama at times, but it works well all the same. The cast — which also includes Faye Dunaway, John Phillip Law »
- Rob Hunter
Howard Hughes movies (photo: Leonardo DiCaprio as Howard Hughes in 'The Aviator') Turner Classic Movies will be showing the Howard Hughes-produced, John Farrow-directed, Baja California-set gangster drama His Kind of Woman, starring Robert Mitchum, Hughes discovery Jane Russell, and Vincent Price, at 3 a.m. Pt / 6 a.m. Et on Saturday, November 8, 2014. Hughes produced a couple of dozen movies. (More on that below.) But what about "Howard Hughes movies"? Or rather, movies -- whether big-screen or made-for-television efforts -- featuring the visionary, eccentric, hypochondriac, compulsive-obsessive, all-American billionaire as a character? Besides Leonardo DiCaprio, who plays a dashing if somewhat unbalanced Hughes in Martin Scorsese's 2004 Best Picture Academy Award-nominated The Aviator, other actors who have played Howard Hughes on film include the following: Tommy Lee Jones in William A. Graham's television movie The Amazing Howard Hughes (1977), with Lee Purcell as silent film star Billie Dove, Tovah Feldshuh as Katharine Hepburn, »
- Andre Soares
StreamFix is your one-stop shop for the web's best streams. Here's the best of Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, and Crackle this week. Netflix "Galaxy Quest" It's strange that we choose to watch other movies when we can just watch "Galaxy Quest" again and again. The awesome movie puts washed-up TV actors from a cult sci-fi hit (played by Sigourney Weaver, Tim Allen, Tony Shalhoub, and Alan Rickman) into a real-life space adventure. Perfect chemistry for such an offbeat cast. I'd say, "Sigourney Weaver has never been more bad-ass!" but she achieves such heights in pretty much every movie, doesn't she? "Alfie" I'm not much for remakes of Michael Caine's best work (Remember the abysmal "Sleuth" revamp?), but Jude Law actually succeeds here by recreating the debonair man at the heart of the 1966 classic. Susan Sarandon, Marisa Tomei, and Jane Krakowski all pay his conquests here. Oh, Alfie. What's it all about? »
- Louis Virtel
Honorary Oscars 2014: Hayao Miyazaki, Jean-Claude Carrière, and Maureen O’Hara; Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award goes to Harry Belafonte One good thing about the creation of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ Governors Awards — an expedient way to remove the time-consuming presentation of the (nearly) annual Honorary Oscar from the TV ratings-obsessed, increasingly youth-oriented Oscar show — is that each year up to four individuals can be named Honorary Oscar recipients, thus giving a better chance for the Academy to honor film industry veterans while they’re still on Planet Earth. (See at the bottom of this post a partial list of those who have gone to the Great Beyond, without having ever received a single Oscar statuette.) In 2014, the Academy’s Board of Governors has selected a formidable trio of honorees: Japanese artist and filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki, 73; French screenwriter Jean-Claude Carrière, 82; and Irish-born Hollywood actress Maureen O’Hara, »
- Andre Soares
We are incorporating two elements here in the Caped Crusader’s universe: applying the Batman 60′s ABC-tv show (1966-1968/3 seasons) with the Batman film franchise (1989 and beyond). The link that we are looking for to connect Batman’s cheesy television past and its current and future filming state of mind is the conception of repackaging the Dynamic Duo’s cartoonish villains from the small screen and giving them new life on the big screen in the millennium. Let’s examine this line of reasoning, shall we?
As any Batman enthusiast (or casual observer) knows about the campy TV series back in the late 60′s is that the main off-kilter charm was the colorful and wacky regular guest star villains that populated the program many times through the three-year broadcast on the network. Household hooligans such as Catwoman, the Joker, the Penguin and the Riddler would return and become the routine »
- Frank Ochieng
We pay tribute to the work of the late artist Hr Giger, and follow the making of his masterpiece of design, the Alien...
It’s the summer of 1978, and the UK’s Shepperton Studios simmers in the heat. Secreted away in his own personal workshop, a Swiss artist works feverishly on his paintings and sculptures, either fashioning strange shapes from gigantic blocks of styrofoam or spraying them with his airbrush.
This is 38-year-old Hr Giger, and he cuts an unusual figure. His shock of black hair is slicked back away from his pale forehead. He refuses to take his leather jacket off despite the searing heat. On a bench sits row after row of human and animal bones - skulls, femurs, vertebrae - plus a weird assortment of ribbed hoses, wires and mechanical parts taken from old Rolls Royce motorcars. Quietly, obsessively, Giger is building his Alien.
The story »
Netflix Instant is a wonderland of new treasures and old favorites. Here are five titles you’ll want to scoop up during, say, a particularly chilly Tuesday night.
For me, the creepiest thing about Sunset Boulevard isn’t Norma Desmond’s clownish, Dee Snider-like expressions or William Holden‘s descent into some seriously gray gardens. It’s that the characters in the film make such casual references to other movie stars of the time — Barbara Stanwyck, Tyrone Power, Alan Ladd, and Betty Hutton all come up — that you feel like you’re listening to modern-day showbiz types in a 1950 movie. These people sound like tamer Nikki Finkes. It’s weird! I’m not used to people in old movies sounding real and current. What if Grace Kelly just turned to the camera in Rear Window and deadpanned, “I don’t find Hannah sympathetic on Girls“? It’s like that! »
- Louis Virtel
For 40 years, working for Columbia Pictures and then Universal Intl., he produced movies in a variety of genres. There were Westerns such as “The Cimarron Kid,” starring Audie Murphy, and “Return of the Seven,” as well as comedies such as “Francis Joins the Wacs,” starring Donald O’Connor. Richmond was also an uncredited producer on the Elvis Presley pic “It Happened at the World’s Fair.”
In the 1950s he partnered with his close friend Tyrone Power to form Copa Prods. The company’s first movie, “Count Three and Pray,” introduced Joanne Woodward to films. In 1959, during the filming of “Solomon and Sheba,” Richmond was devastated when Power, »
- Carmel Dagan
9 items from 2014
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