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4 items from 2011

Forgotten Pre-Codes: "Afraid to Talk" (1932)

14 December 2011 7:50 PM, PST | MUBI | See recent MUBI news »

Part of a series by David Cairns on forgotten pre-Code films. 

Edward L. Cahn—how shall I sing your praises? Perhaps before seeing this film I wouldn't have bothered, though It! The Terror from Beyond Space (1958) is a genuinely exciting sci-fi horror, and a clear precursor to Alien. Apart from that, Cahn seems to resemble W. Lee Wilder (Billy Wilder's idiot brother), in that he was capable of semi-decent Z-grade noirs, but concentrated much of his attention on science fiction, a genre he seemed to have no understanding of and nothing but contempt for. Cahn's Invisible Invaders (1959) may safely be recommended to anybody who likes really, really stupid movies. Movies so stupid they forget to breath.

Above: The chain gang chorus line—a surprisingly uncommon trope.

But decades earlier, things were different. Cahn was already churning out several quickies a year, with snap-brimmed titles like Homicide Squad (1931) and Radio Patrol (1932). The difference was, »

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Howard Keel Movie Schedule: Kismet, Lovely To Look At, Floods Of Fear

30 August 2011 1:46 AM, PDT | Alt Film Guide | See recent Alt Film Guide news »

Howard Keel on TCM Pt.2: Rose Marie, Pagan Love Song, Callaway Went Thataway Schedule (Et) and synopses from the TCM website: 6:00 Am Desperate Search (1953) A man fights to find his children after their plane crashes in the Canadian wilderness. Dir: Joseph Lewis. Cast: Howard Keel, Jane Greer, Patricia Medina. Bw-71 mins. 7:15 Am Fast Company (1953) The heiress to a racing stable uncovers underhanded dealings. Dir: John Sturges. Cast: Howard Keel, Polly Bergen, Marjorie Main. Bw-68 mins. 8:30 Am Kismet (1955) In this Arabian Nights musical "king of the beggars" infiltrates high society when his daughter is wooed by a handsome prince. Dir: Vincente Minnelli. Cast: Howard Keel, Ann Blyth, Dolores Gray. C-113 mins, Letterbox Format. 10:30 Am Rose Marie (1954) A trapper's daughter is torn between the Mountie who wants to civilize her and a dashing prospector. Dir: Mervyn LeRoy. Cast: Ann Blyth, Howard Keel, Fernando Lamas, Bert Lahr, Marjorie Main. »

- Andre Soares

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Anne Francis Movie Schedule: Funny Girl, Impasse, Blackboard Jungle

29 August 2011 12:44 AM, PDT | Alt Film Guide | See recent Alt Film Guide news »

Anne Francis on TCM: Forbidden Planet, Brainstorm, A Lion Is In The Streets Schedule (Et) and synopses from the TCM website: 6:00 Am Summer Holiday (1948) Musical remake of Ah, Wilderness!, about a small-town boy's struggles with growing up. Dir: Rouben Mamoulian. Cast: Mickey Rooney, Gloria DeHaven, Walter Huston, Frank Morgan, Jackie Jenkins, Marilyn Maxwell, Agnes Moorehead. C-93 mins. 7:45 Am So Young So Bad (1950) A crusading psychiatrist tries to help troubled reform school girls. Dir: Bernard Vorhaus. Cast: Paul Henreid, Catherine McLeod, Cecil Clovelly, Anne Jackson, Rita Moreno. Bw-91 mins. 9:30 Am Battle Cry (1955) A group of Marines eagerly await deployment during World War II. Dir: Raoul Walsh. Cast: Van Heflin, Aldo Ray, Mona Freeman, Dorothy Malone, Nancy Olson, Tab Hunter, James Whitmore, Raymond Massey, William Campbell. C-148 mins, Letterbox Format. 12:00 Pm Bad Day At Black Rock (1955) A one-armed veteran uncovers small-town secrets when he tries to visit an Asian-American war hero's family. »

- Andre Soares

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Clip joint: Facial stroking

24 March 2011 4:37 AM, PDT | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

A selection of the best clips in which actors try to touch the audience by touching themselves

Jerry Seinfeld once did a standup routine lampooning a survey which found that people's number one fear was "public speaking", with "death" coming in second. Seinfeld got big laughs from this seeming absurdity, but unless you're suffering a terminal illness, death is something you probably expect to happen fairly unexpectedly, whereas public-speaking obligations generally come with plenty of dread-inducing advance notice. What coping strategies can sufferers of acute self-consciousness adopt? Well, getting roaring drunk beforehand, or simply failing to turn up, can be effective. But most of us rely on less extreme measures, resorting to what psychologists call (and, please, no sniggering at the back) the "self-touch" gesture: coughing, nose-rubbing, hair-fixing, forehead-massaging, ear-scratching, etc.

Offering a way of grounding ourselves against the static of social awkwardness, the self-touch is actually quite an actorly »

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