4 items from 2014
Next week at Tfh features a trio of trippy films gathered together under the banner "Just Say No". They include Requiem for a Dream, The Trip, and the subject of today's Saturday Matinee, Confessions of an Opium Eater.
Producer Albert Zugsmith was a consummate exploitationist, launching his career in 1952 with the berserk red-scare screed, Invasion USA starring Gerald Mohr and Dan O’Herlihy. He would spend the next twenty years rattling off a memorably lurid series of titles stoked by the hottest of hot-button topics, including teenage sex (High School Confidential), collegiate sex (Sex Kittens go to College) and interracial sex (Night of the Quarter Moon). There’s a pattern here if you look real close.
An amiable self-made millionaire who seemed to thrive on the low-down pleasures found on the other side of the tracks, Zugsmith’s first directorial efforts (College Confidential, The Private Lives of Adam and Eve »
- Charlie Largent
Written by Jerome T. Gollard
Directed by Lew Landers
Two travellers, strangers to one another, meet on a train. One is a young, attractive, if tempestuous woman named Marie (Eve Miller), the other a much older man, Dr. Valonius (Fritz Leiber). The man has an uncanny ability to read the future with alarming accuracy, demonstrating his skill with simple predictions that impress his new traveling companion. He then shares a story he knows about a woman with the same personality as Marie. The story begins with a man named Henry Dunlop (Charles Russell) getting off a train at a small town only to be hysterically accosted by his current lover. Henry inadvertently kills the woman and, in a state of panic, dumps the cadaver on the balcony of the last cart just as the locomotive departs. Stuck in a tiny town on a rainy night, Henry finds »
- Edgar Chaput
Heavy breathing, hammering heart and outrageous enthusiasm in the form of tiny little squeals were just some of the things I experienced right after receiving a text from my editor last summer asking me If I was available and wanted to attend a set visit for Xmen. Umm, let’s not kid ourselves. Considering the film has an amazing all-star A-list cast and the prequel, First Class is pretty kick-ass, naturally it was a no-brainer. However, when I discovered Michael Fassbender, Hugh Jackman and James McAvoy would be filming on set that day. I jumped on the chance like a cheetah on its prey.
Soon after that, this over-heated and grateful gal, flew out to Montreal on a very hot August day, to join a select group of equally curious and enthusiastic reporters. The morning after our arrival, we met our sweet Fox rep, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, to be driven »
- Jenny Karakaya
Miscasting in films has always been a problem. A producer hires an actor thinking that he or she is perfect for a movie role only to find the opposite is true. Other times a star is hired for his box office draw but ruins an otherwise good movie because he looks completely out of place.
There have been many humdinger miscastings. You only have to laugh at John Wayne’s Genghis Khan (with Mongol moustache and gun-belt) in The Conqueror (1956), giggle at Marlon Brando’s woeful upper class twang as Fletcher Christian in Mutiny on the Bounty (1962) and cringe at Dick Van Dyke’s misbegotten cockney accent in Mary Poppins (1964). But as hilarious as these miscastings are, producers at the time didn’t think the same way, until after the event. At least they add a bit of camp value to a mediocre or downright awful movie.
In rare cases, »
4 items from 2014
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