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Arthur of the Britons (1972)
Too Short a Season
I thought about this series after seeing "King Arthur".
This actually made it across the pond in limited/commercial (not PBS) syndication in 1977 to 78. When the episodes ran their course here in DC, some local youths did a petition drive for the ABC affiliate to keep running it. No success.
There was an Excalibur reference, and in at least one episode Arthur was shown removing the sword from the stone at a multi tribal council, but it was presented as something to be expected. "Ach, there he goes again."
The sidekick who was born a Saxon reminds me of the narrator of Bernard Cornwell's Arthurian trilogy of novels.
There was a lot of outdoor filming in this series and they made the most of modest budgets. Episodes like these are good examples of actions series that can be presented in a half hour format.
Follow That Cab!
When adult theaters such as the one profiled in this film were prolific, feminist activists would lead tours of Times Square to bring attention to their cause.
The main character's regular and extensive swimming exercise is a good analogy for the pace of the film. Steady, slow, heavy.
One amusing note, when our heroine follows her mystery man who has just taken a cab, she jumps into another cab, the sax is on the soundtrack, no dialouge, but you can read her lips: "Follow that Cab!"
It's also ironic that she follows him to the Fulton Street Fish Market, which in real life became the focus of an extensive organized crime probe.
Ride Lonesome (1959)
Watch it with black coffee and beef jerky
Contemporary reviewers described the Ranown films as B+ Westerns. High quality scripts and execution on efficient budgets. Note that the hanging tree used at the climax of "Ride Lonesome" is surrounded by water in "Comanche Station". Unfortunately, in my opinion, some of the dialogue is recycled by Mr. Kennedy between the two films as the respective duos/allies (Best/Coburn - Akins/Homier) contemplate offing Scott and the younger says you they have to get him between them, you can't go at a man like Brigade/Cody straight on. However, its reasonable that desperados in a writer's milieu would use the same phrasing.
The action scenes in Ride Lonesome are excellent and it is impressive to see Scott's riding skills at his age, such as in the scene where they notice the warriors on the ridge and he accelerates his horse in order to get Karen Steele to safety.
The action is complemented by the night scenes where the elliptical dialogue between the characters provides intellectual comic relief.
Other items I liked are Lee Van Cleef's turn when he realizes why Brigade is being so obvious about their path. When I first saw the film I was impressed by James Best's performance but didn't notice the feather in his hat. Seeing it in a retrospective with a friend, he noticed the feather. My first reaction was that the character was part Indian, he thought it was meant to show the character as "chicken", ie punkish.
The Cheyenne Social Club (1970)
Lasting Impressions from a Serviceable Western
My lasting memory from seeing this film in a large screen theater in 1970 is the opening scene: Fonda and Stewart at work on a snowy range with other cowboys before Stewart gets notified of his inheritance.
I don't think the film made much money upon initial release, but when it was shown on US network television in the late seventies, it was the number one telecast for the week. Back in those pre multi cable days, I'm sure some grasping producer (Glenn Larson type) was contemplating a pilot for a few weeks.