Pursuit of the Graf Spee (1956) - News Poster

News

The Battle of the River Plate

Powell & Pressburger’s big-scale historical epic is perhaps the best show ever about an old-school naval encounter between battleships. The first half depicts the showdown between England and Germany in the South Atlantic, and the second half a tense diplomatic game in the neutral country of Uruguay. Peter Finch, Bernard Lee and Anthony Quayle shine as sea captains.

Panzerschiff Graf Spee (The Battle of the River Plate)

Region B Blu-ray

ITV Studios Home Entertainment (Germany)

1956 / Color / 1:78 widescreen / 119, 106 117 min./ Pursuit of the Graf Spee / Street Date 2010 / Available from Amazon UK £16.90

Starring: Peter Finch, Bernard Lee, Anthony Quayle, John Gregson, Ian Hunter, Jack Gwillim, Lionel Murton, Anthony Bushell, Peter Illing, Michael Goodliffe, Patrick Macnee, Christopher Lee.

Cinematography: Christopher Challis

Production Design: Arthur Lawson

Film Editor: Reginald Mills

Original Music: Brian Easdale

Written, Produced & Directed by Michael Powell & Emeric Pressberger

The best way so far to see the impressive The Battle of the River Plate
See full article at Trailers from Hell »

R.I.P. Patrick Macnee (1922 – 2015)

Actor Patrick Macnee – who was best known for his role as secret agent John Steed in the classic 1960s spy series The Avengers – has passed away at his home in California on Thursday, aged 93.

Born in London in 1922, Macnee studied at the Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Art but had to put his fledgling acting career on hold when he was called up to serve in the Royal Navy during World War II.

Following his service, he appeared in films such as Scrooge (151) and The Battle of the River Plate, before securing his career defining turn in The Avengers, which ran between 1961 and 1969.

Macnee would reprise the role of John Steed for the 1976 revival The New Avengers, while his subsequent credits included the likes of The Howling, This Is Spinal Tap, A View to a Kill and Waxwork. He also lent his voice to Invisible Jones in the 1998 feature adaptation of The Avengers,
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

London Film Festival: 8 stunning images of iconic stars in the capital

London Film Festival: 8 stunning images of iconic stars in the capital
Rarely seen images of iconic Hollywood stars over the last century in London's Leicester Square have been revealed ahead of the 2014 BFI London Film Festival.

The pictures capture cinematic history in the capital, including Marilyn Monroe curtseying for The Queen, and all feature in The Glamour of Leicester Square coffee table book by W London - Leicester Square.

The BFI London Film Festival opens tomorrow with the premiere of The Imitation Game, with confirmed attendances from the movie's stars Benedict Cumberbatch, Keira Knightley, Matthew Goode, Mark Strong and Charles Dance

Brad Pitt's World War II drama Fury will close the event on October 19.

Peruse through some classic images of stars from the world of cinema and beyond below:

1. Sophia Loren

Sophia Loren receives a celebratory kiss from her husband, Italian film producer Carlo Ponti, after she received the first Alexander Korda International Star of the Year award at the
See full article at Digital Spy - Movie News »

Blu-ray, DVD Release: The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp

Blu-ray & DVD Release Date: March 19, 2013

Price: DVD $29.95, Blu-ray $39.95

Studio: Criterion

Roger Livesey stars in The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp

Considered by many to be the finest British films ever made, the1943 war-drama-romance classic The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp is directed by Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger (The Battle of the River Plate).

Roger Livesey dynamically embodies outmoded English militarism as the indelible General Clive Candy, who barely survives four decades of tumultuous British history (1902 to 1942) only to see the world change irrevocably before his eyes. Anton Walbrook (The Red Shoes) and Deborah Kerr (Black Narcissus) provide unforgettable support, he as a German enemy turned lifelong friend of Blimp’s and she as young women of three consecutive generations—a socially committed governess, a sweet-souled war nurse, and a modern-thinking army driver—who inspire him.

Shot in gorgeous Technicolor, Colonel Blimp is both moving and satirical—a
See full article at Disc Dish »

Christopher Challis

Creative cinematographer and a key member of the Powell-Pressburger movie production team

Although the cinematographer Christopher Challis, who has died aged 93, was an essential member of the Archers production company of Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, he joined them as director of photography at the time of their decline. However, he worked on more of the great British writing-directing team's films than any other cinematographer. These eccentric, extravagant, intelligent and witty fantasies went against the British realist tradition, allowing more scope for a creative cinematographer such as Challis. The sensuous use of Technicolor and flamboyant sets and designs made them closer to the MGM world of Vincente Minnelli and of Stanley Donen, who used Challis on six of his films.

Perhaps Challis's finest achievement was on Powell and Pressburger's The Tales of Hoffmann (1951) which, as he explained, had "no optical effects or tricks. It was all edited in
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

New Release: Ill Met By Moonlight DVD

Hen’s Tooth Video will release the 1957 British war drama-adventure Ill Met By Moonlight (also known as Night Ambush) on DVD on Aug. 16 for the list price of $19.95, marking the film’s DVD premiere in the U.S.

British officers David Oxley (l.) and Dirk Bogarde are Ill Met By Midnight.

Written, produced and directed by the legendary filmmaking team of Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, the World War II movie follows two British officers (Despair‘s Dirk Bogarde, David Oxley) who are assigned to kidnap a German General (Marius Goring) from the Nazi occupied island of Crete and deliver him to Allied forces in Cairo. Aided by local patriots, the abduction itself goes smoothly, but the Brits’ subsequent action-filled escape across the rocky Cretan landscape proves to be more problematic.

Based on W. Stanley Moss’s autobiographical account of the operation, Ill Met By Moonlight was the last collaboration between Powell and Pressburger,
See full article at Disc Dish »

Paul Kriwaczek obituary

Television education producer and writer on the ancient world

Paul Kriwaczek, who has died aged 73, was a communicator with great presentational flair. A producer of educational television and, subsequently, a writer about ancient civilisations, he used his vast store of knowledge to explain by metaphor, analogy and models. His last book, Babylon, Mesopotamia and the Birth of Civilisations (2010), began by describing the execution of Saddam Hussein in the style of the Old Testament Book of Kings, to show how the dictator saw himself as the successor to Nebuchadnezzar. In the TV series that introduced the computer to the British household, The Computer Programme (1981), the studio presenter explained the picture format of analogue TV, while his woollen sweater was being unwound line by line from his person.

Paul joined BBC Further Education TV in 1970. Any subject seemed possible, provided the programmes were in series, accompanied by a booklet and made on the cheap.
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Douglas Argent obituary

Television comedy director and producer known for Fawlty Towers, Steptoe and Son and Till Death Us Do Part

Douglas Argent, who has died aged 89, was a prolific producer and director who scored hits with Till Death Us Do Part, Steptoe and Son, Fawlty Towers and Spike Milligan's Q8 and Q9 series – all with humour that pushed the boundaries of TV comedy.

He was gifted the second series of Fawlty Towers to produce in 1979. The creation of John Cleese and Connie Booth – who had divorced since the first run, four years earlier – went on to top a British Film Institute list of the 100 best TV programmes, as voted for by industry professionals. Argent modestly insisted that its success lay in the writing. However, producers guide all those working on their programmes and his track record was impressive, particularly in the field of comedy.

Argent was born in Bexleyheath, Kent, and his parents ran ironmonger's shops.
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Douglas Argent obituary

Television comedy director and producer known for Fawlty Towers, Steptoe and Son and Till Death Us Do Part

Douglas Argent, who has died aged 89, was a prolific producer and director who scored hits with Till Death Us Do Part, Steptoe and Son, Fawlty Towers and Spike Milligan's Q8 and Q9 series – all with humour that pushed the boundaries of TV comedy.

He was gifted the second series of Fawlty Towers to produce in 1979. The creation of John Cleese and Connie Booth – who had divorced since the first run, four years earlier – went on to top a British Film Institute list of the 100 best TV programmes, as voted for by industry professionals. Argent modestly insisted that its success lay in the writing. However, producers guide all those working on their programmes and his track record was impressive, particularly in the field of comedy.

Argent was born in Bexleyheath, Kent, and his parents ran ironmonger's shops.
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

In The August Notebook

  • MUBI
David Cairns

The Forgotten: Remember

The Forgotten: Cold Warrior

The Forgotten: The Other Other House

The Forgotten: Girls on a Motorcycle

Adrian Curry

Movie Poster of the Week: The Alamo Roadshow Posters of Olly Moss

Movie Poster of the Week: The Movie Posters of Tom Whalen

Movie Poster of the Week: Iranian Cinema of the 60s and 70s

Movie Poster of the Week: "On the Bowery"

Doug Dibbern

For the Filming of Widescreen Snowscapes and Against the Interpretation of Dreams

Veronika Ferdman

Karlovy Vary 2010: A Bohemian Rhapsody

Matthew Flanagan

Image of the Day. Records of Material Objects in the Cinema #4

S. Hahn

Image of the day. Looming

Boyd van Hoeij

Venice 2010 Preview

Daniel Kasman

Mysterious Extracts from a Film's Subtitle Track

A Gentleman Prefers Friends

Image of the Day. Cinema Villains & Villainy #1

The McKay Way

Image of the Day. Frames We Love

Video Sundays. Cabaret Cinema

For The Icon,
See full article at MUBI »

Tuesday Morning Foreign DVD and Blu-ray disc Report: "The Battle of the River Plate/The Pursuit of the Graf Spee" (Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, 1956)

  • MUBI
This is the film that made me fall in love with Montvideo. Montevideo being the major city in Uruguay and the setting for the climax of this picture, a naval battle whose outcome I shall be spoiling (Spoiler Alert!) below. The climax of this splendid 1956 film by Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, one of the least-talked about pictures in the team's ouevre, takes place in Montevideo, where the notorious German "pocket battleship" (the term, rather confusingly, refers to a large cruising war ship) had been docked for repairs in late 1939. (One thing that made the ship notorious was that it had sunk nearly ten Allied merchant ships by that time.) Hot on its trail...and hence, one of the film's two titles, The Pursuit of the Graf Spee...were several British and Australian ships. Once those caught up with the Graf Spee, the captain of the latter vessel—played here
See full article at MUBI »

See also

Showtimes | External Sites