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Tumbledown is named for Tumbledown Mountain where this film was shot and there's some mighty pretty scenery there. Too bad we did not get a film to match the scenery.
Supposedly Tumbledown is based on a true incident where Todd Verow who also wrote and directed the film invites a hunky 30 something bartender in a gay bar to spend some time in the woods where Verow has a cabin. The bartender Todd Hallowell eagerly agrees and is even more eager when he sees Brett Faulkner, Verow's young twink of a boyfriend.
But Verow does something quite irreversible to both of them and in the end they feel they have to take measures.
None of these performances were anywhere close to Oscar caliber. They're not even spectacularly bad for Razzies. The sex scenes to cover a lot of bad acting. Practice guys, practice, the acting not the sex, you're already good there.
Blackmail Boys (2010)
Noting that this is a film that was shot in Chicago I was wondering if the folks who created Blackmail Boys had Peter LaBarbera in mind as the Christian writer who has a secret gay life that a pair of young men are about to expose?
It certainly is the wish dream of a lot of gay activists to expose a lot of these hucksters who are closet queers. As Porno Pete operates out of Chicago it would make a certain amount of sense.
Two gay young men get an opportunity to do just that in this film. Nathan Adloff has been doing some prostitution to help pay for school and now he's got a for real involvement with boyfriend Taylor Reed who has come up from Tennessee to be with him.
Reed recognizes one of Adloff's clients as Joe Swanberg noted Christian author and vigorous homophobe in the Porno Pete mold. While one of their sessions is going on Reed snaps some candid shots of Swanberg and Adloff going at it with some anal sodomy. Then they attempt to blackmail him.
For how it ends you have to see the film. But frankly I wouldn't bother. The production values of this cheapie are nil and the acting is non-existent. Pity because this is an interesting subject.
Sheriff of Cimarron (1945)
Carson Family Values
Sheriff Of Cimarron finds Sunset Carson recently released from prison for cattle rustling. He's done three years and little does he suspect that it was his own brother who framed him for a crime he didn't commit. For a G rated cowboy film this is pretty unusual as they stressed family values to the Nth degree. It's also pretty cold.
When Sunset as a private citizen prevents a pair of holdups the citizens of Cimarron make him the sheriff. But brother Ted played by Riley Hill wants his good brother the sheriff out of the way as he's cramping his operation even though Sunset doesn't know his brother's behind it.
Hill is one coldblooded character. We wouldn't see feuding brothers like this in a western until Winchester 73 with James Stewart and Stephen McNally.
For comic relief we get Olin Howlin the butt of juvenile humor by some town juveniles. That we could have done without.
Sheriff At Cimarron is pretty good with potential to be something better. Herbert J. Yates should have spent some more money on it.
Oregon Trail (1945)
The power of the press
Oregon Trail has Sunset Carson arriving on the scene as a wanted outlaw barely escaping capture by Union Pacific Railroad detective Lee Shumway. In the tradition of B westerns the title has nothing to do with the story. I'm not sure the action took place in Oregon.
But after his horse throws him, Sunset like John Wayne in Stagecoach gets a ride and proves invaluable in holding off other bandits look to rob the coach. Carson also makes friends with Peggy Stewart and her father Frank Jaquet who were passengers on the coach and later Stewart's grandmother Mary Carr who proves handy with firearms.
When they get to Jaquet's town of Gunsight they find that an outlaw band has taken over the town and Steve Winston as a crusading editor seems to be the only one standing up against them. Winston for his pains gets a couple of bullets fired into his office, so much for the power of the press. Actually Winston has a great deal of power as we learn.
This was a pretty good Sunset Carson western with a good amount of paced action and a clever plot, better than you usually get from B westerns.
The trial of Benjamin Franklin
In this concluding episode of a two part story, Marion Lorne has to summon Benjamin Franklin once again from the 18th century so he can appear in court for stealing a fire engine. Also Dick York put up Ben's bail and stands to lose a thousand dollars if Ben doesn't show.
The fortunes of McMahon&Tate are also at stake here as the District Attorney, a very ambitious Mike Road has it in his head that this is all a publicity stunt. Since David White thought so too, Road is on solid grounds.
Once again Fredd Wayne is marvelous as Benjamin Franklin. It's also good to have a co-counsel as bright as Elizabeth Montgomery who has certain assets at her disposal to help the case.
After 40 years, still a marvelous episode.
Bewitched: My Friend Ben (1966)
"Benjamin Franklin at your service"
A truly charming episode from Bewitched is this first of a two part story where dotty old Aunt Clara drops in for a visit. She sees Elizabeth Montgomery trying to deal with a broken lamp and decides to call an electrician. But not just any electrician, Marion Lorne summons from the past the original electrician Bemjamin Franklin.
Of course Dick York's boss David White drops in and immediately thinks is an advertising gimmick for the Franklin Electronics account. After all he looks so real.
But things really come to a head when he leaves the Stevens' residence and starts wandering about town.
Fredd Wayne does a marvelous job as Benjamin Franklin whose wisdom and common sense we could sure use in the body politic today. In fact Franklin is my favorite of the Founding Fathers.
Part two is when Ben Franklin goes to trial for a moving violation. Stay tuned.
Hit, but no run
Patricia Hardy becomes the Perry Mason client in this one when at the urging of loyal secretary Della Street, Raymond Burr takes a case involving a hit and run with a truck where the truckdriver is killed.
It was a hit and run, but it wasn't Hardy doing the running. She was picked up by John Hubbard while hitchhiking and when he attempted to get fresh with her is when the car crashed. Hardy was knocked out and Hubbard ran away from the scene of the accident on foot. In fact he wasn't even driving his car. The car belonged to Hollywood wunderkind producer Grant Richards. It seems to me though that Accident&Investigations should have determined that Hardy was not the one driving.
But Hubbard is later murdered and then the butler that Richards employed Fredd Wayne also was murdered. Hardy is on the hook for both.
A relationship existed between two cast members that was not known is the key to proving Hardy's innocence. That and a bit lawyering by Raymond Burr who first tries to get William Talman to introduce evidence that he wants in. When Talman doesn't do it, Burr switches to Plan B.
Nice episode but this one was a little too cute and contrived.
Idiots Deluxe (1945)
"I'm a sick man, a very sick man"
Idiots Deluxe has the 3 Stooges coming apart as it were. Larry and Curly have finally brought charges against Moe for assaulting them. As this short subject opens Moe is taking the witness stand and telling his story in flashback to Stooge regular Vernon Dent playing the judge.
This judge hears how Moe has put up with all kinds of stupidity over the years and certainly recorded in many short subjects. It would be enough to drive anyone over the edge and the doctors tell Moe his nerves are shot and he needs peace and quiet. So why Moe would go on a vacation with the source of his anxiety is to me reason enough to question his sanity.
So at a nice cabin in the woods, Larry and Curly together with a bear drive Moe to commit more than the usual amount of mayhem upon their persons.
Very funny short, all Stooge fans should see this.
Booby Dupes (1945)
They Can get it for you wholesale
This short subject finds the 3 Stooges as fish peddlers and doing about as well as they do in other occupations. But they get the brilliant idea of becoming fishermen and selling their catch wholesale. What the Fulton Fish Market in New York wouldn't do to keep these guys away.
Once at sea in a pair of ramshackle rowboats the boys have their usual monkeyshines trying to learn their new trade. Curly has a bout with a flying fish and need I tell you who won?
But adding insult to injury when they sink one boat and get to the second, trying to get attention they raise a white flag for rescue. A passing plane sees the white flag and because of certain stains thinks it Japanese.
What was unusual about this was that at the very end Moe has a good idea from getting away from the bombs dropping all around. Can't tell what it is. But Stooge fans everywhere will appreciate it.
This Wagon Train episode has Robert Horton planning to visit an old friend Gloria DeHaven in the next town. She's married to the mayor of the town and they have a son played by Michael Burns.
But before that happens when someone yells 'horse thief' on the Wagon Train and all the regulars run out after him, it's Horton who shoots him. They examine his identification and it's the solid citizen that is married to DeHaven and father of her son.
There's a logical explanation for all of this as to why this solid pillar of the community might be a horse thief. But we do take the entire length of the episode to find out.
DeHaven was gorgeous as ever and does well as a concerned mother. For her fans especially.