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Rawhide: Incident of the Wanderer (1964)
One of the better episodes
This is a good example of how superstition or preconceived notions can affect people's ability to think rationally.
A man comes walking into the camp needing some assistance. Just because he is "different" the men begin to fear he is the reason for several things that go wrong. He eventually shows himself to be an asset thereby breaking down some barriers that are the result of superstitions, legends, and prejudice.
The story line also addresses how a person feels if they are displaced for whatever reason. People who find self worth in being productive can become very saddened and perhaps even depressed when they can no longer do the task they were entrusted with. Wishbone expresses he feels useless when both hands are scalded with hot water. He is unable to cook and the stranger serves up some very tasty meals. All wishbone can do is watch and listen.
Rawhide: The Peddler (1962)
Humor, danger, and romance.
I am thoroughly enjoying the series again, I had a great time watching this as a kid.
Vitina Marcus, who played the young Indian girl, was a great addition. She played the role of the daughter of a white man and native American woman. She was being treated bad by her stepfather and a fellow not part of the cattle drive helped her. They end up joining the drive in order to get to his destination. She spoke to an "Indian chief" in what sounded like a blend of Spanish and some other language I did not comprehend. It was very convincing as they spoke back and forth. I don't see in her biography that she had the opportunity to learn a foreign language but it sure sounded real.
This had a nice surprise ending.
The Frozen Ground (2013)
I had not read reviews, I found this by accident at the rental shop, so I came to it with open mind. The approach was different enough that I found myself pulled into it, wanting to see this creep nailed and jailed.
The young woman who played a victim of the serial molester did an amazing job of making you feel her frustration and fear. I was impressed with her performance. The scenes where she was ducking in and out of the seedy places in Anchorage were disturbing. It bothers me greatly to think there might be such a huge amount of traffic in drugs and prostitution. Too often a high percentage of the women are being used and abused. And often they are underage girls lead into that by people who use them as cash cows and do little for their welfare.
The story moves along well, there is music perfect for the scenes that help you feel the tension at times and yet foreboding when the camera pans the wild Alaskan wilderness. Beautiful but a bit intimidating with its harshness.
The movie does an excellent job of slowly building the tension as it nears the end. For a few agonizing minutes you do not know what will happen to the young frightened girl. Will the bad guys do her in? Will the cops find her in time? I won't tell you and ruin it for you.
I recommend this movie for any above age 17. There is considerable nudity at the dance "studios" that might be a bit much for the younger teens. If you let the younger teens watch prepare them mentally that what they will see in the clubs is not behavior you want them to imitate.
Body of Proof: Pilot (2011)
It is February 2015, and I am watching this show now for the first time with DVD from Netflix.
It is excellently written and executed. There is drama, surprises, plot twists and enough humor to keep it from getting too dark.
I notice in season 2 the autopsies are getting more graphic and I suspect that had somewhat to do with the declining viewer ship.
Too bad the writers went in that direction because I really like this show. I am currently on season two episode 14 and the show is getting much better in my opinion.
I'm not certain now how I came across it. I am bummed that the show was canceled after only three seasons, I thoroughly enjoy the intrigue and the antics between the characters.
This show had great potential, too bad it is no longer. But at least we have the show on DVD.
A gem. The spoilers are vague and should not ruin the movie for you.
I'm not sure now what piqued my curiosity regarding this movie. I do like Ernest Borgnine, I've appreciated him in everything from war movies to silly comedy and not once did I get the feeling he was "acting". I didn't even know that Marty got an academy award for best picture until I came to IMDb to post a comment. So that is not the reason I chose this movie. I rented it from Netflix because the local movie stores don't stock these oldies. I think that says a lot about the academy voters. Lately, movies have to show awesome costumes and special effects to win best picture. This one had none of that and yet the academy saw the real story in this movie. Impressive.
It moves a bit slow at times, I fear there will be few people under 30 who will appreciate this movie. It dealt with, no perhaps I should say, it demonstrated some issues that are still a part of society.
Maybe in 1955 it was okay to portray Italian mothers as overbearing. I doubt anyone would make a movie like that today. And of course most Italian people have intermarried and their life is not quite the same as the ones depicted in this movie. But it sure made Italian mothers look bossy and controlling.
Martys mother is frequently after him to get married. he is 34 and she thinks he should have four children already. He meets a girl he really identifies with and suddenly mama doesn't like her. She isn't "right" for her boy.
Marty is a hard working decent guy throughout this whole movie. He has to sort some things out but in the end he does what I believe is best for him.
The movie does a fair job of showing life in the 1950's Bronx. At least according to a couple friends who described it to me while in the army.
This is a movie I'll watch again one day just because the acting and the message is so good.
The Virginian (2014)
A rather convincing old style western.
The acting was convincing, and the scenery was quite breathtaking. It offered a clear image of wilderness and wide open spaces. This was a realistic portrayal of what life was probably like in this time period of the old west. It was a bit gritty at times, but I am certain the old west was not as "romantic" as some movies and books try to portray it. The rugged old log buildings certainly looked authentic. There was a surprise ending I did not see coming. I use to have a good time predicting sub plots but this one fooled me completely. I can't give too much info here or it will ruin the story for others. Just trust that most fans of western style movies will enjoy this.
Gunsmoke: Lynch Town (1973)
even old dogs can learn new behavior
This episode is more about people who make mistakes and learn from them, than it is about gunfights and western justice.
A man not well liked gets into a confrontation in a town and it is witnessed by many of the town folks. The woman at a saloon who he accused of cheating him at cards ends up dead. He is seen leaving the saloon late at night with a wad of money that appeared to have been taken from the safe. So, naturally, the people assume he killed her out of revenge to get the money.
Before a trial can be held, an angry crowd hangs the accused. Somewhere between locking the man up and the hanging, the local sheriff who is under the influence of a wealthy local man named, Mr. King, wires Matt Dillon to come and move the prisoner. When Matt arrives, he wants to get to the bottom of the whole mess.
In the process of getting at the truth we learn that the judge is a yes man for Mr. King who pulled him under his influence because he saw in him someone he could manipulate. The "judge" likes his alcohol and stays just enough inebriated to numb the pain of knowing he has sold out justice and traded it for a comfortable living under the close scrutiny of Mr. King.
The judge of questionable character begins to see in the 16 year old son of the lynched man someone worth salvaging now that his father is dead.
This episode ends with the bought and paid for judge walking away from Mr. King to start a new life and rebuild his integrity as a hard scrabble lawyer. He takes the boy in tow, leaving us with the impression he will see to it the boy gets a proper education and becomes a model citizen who will not repeat the mistakes of his father or of the judge.
I think that makes for a great ending.
Good episode, it dealt with some real issues
I thought this was an excellent episode. We are shown a decent "civilized" man forced into a dangerous situation out of a sense of duty to assist a posse that was chasing down some bank robbers.
Mr. Milligan is a kind hearted, mild mannered man not easily given to violence. But, when he alone encounters two of the bank robbers he has to make a snap decision. The healthy one of the two sees him through the window, turns and reaches for his pistol. Our reluctant Milligan fires instantly out of fear of being shot himself and as luck would have it, he hits the robber in the back. In the 1870's that was considered most cowardly. Does he roll the outlaw over and shoot him in the front to hide what he did as a scheming, devious man would have? No, Milligan chooses to live with the choice he made, he is an honest man. But, then Milligan is harassed and even despised by some of the town folks. He is attacked by a group of men wearing masks who beat him. He manages to ID one of them by pulling the mask off but doesn't tell the Marshall who it was because he most likely suspected that would only aggravate the situation.
Harassment of him and even of his daughter ensues until mild mannered Milligan eventually has had enough. He goes to town and starts smacking the antagonizers around even though he is outnumbered five to one. A pretty gutsy move for a "mild mannered farmer". The Marshall does step in to even the odds and it seems that may have stopped the harassment but he fears the resentment toward his family still lingers in the air. So he reluctantly makes plans to move on leaving all his hard work behind.
Then comes the ending that some other posters here and in other sites have believed ruined the episode.
People come to their farm to tell them they hope they stay and they try to make amends. If you ask me, that is a fantastic way to end an episode that dealt with prejudice and mistreatment of a fellow citizen. I gave this a high rating because it dealt with issues that are still current to this very day.
A Common Man (2013)
I thought this movie was intriguing
It starts with a mysterious man going about placing bombs in several places of Sri Lanka. He even has the intestinal fortitude to go to the police station, make a complaint of a lost wallet so they actually see his face, and plant a bomb in the toilet of the police station. Is he gutsy or just plain crazy? Well, stick around, we'll find out.
He has some technological expertise because he calls using several cell phone and switches cards so they can't pin him down. And he calls and gives advance information to a young news reporter so all of his escapades are broadcast to the public. He wants some terrorists released from prison or the bombs will go off. When the police are reluctant to cooperate he tells them where to find the one in the police station. OOPS, now they know he is not joking.
Suspense builds as we see the faces of the people close to the bombs on a bus and a train. We begin to identify with them, they are no longer just one of a thousand faces in a crowd. We are left wondering if he will blow them up if he is unable to free the terrorists. And we are quite certain they will probably just go about killing more innocents.
There are of course problems getting the right people on line to arrange for the release of the prisoners, but eventually it happens and the bombing terrorists are loaded on a plane and sent on their way. I won't tell you how it all ends because that would totally destroy the plot of the movie.
Early on I was guessing how it would end and I was right. Nothing like you might expect.
If you need numerous explosions to entertain this might not appeal to you. But if you like suspense, and a bit of a chess game plot, this will keep you entertained.
Gunsmoke: P.S. Murry Christmas (1971)
This was a very touching, and heartwarming episode. It had all the elements necessary to tug at the hearts of most people. Orphans that are living in hardship, an uncle-like figure who looks after the kids and he has become very dear to them. He believes the mistress is far too severe on the kids and he conspires to whisk them away. Of course they end up in Dodge City where the towns folks work together to see to it the kids get a Christmas for the first time ever. There are a few surprises and some tender moments. There were numerous chuckles to go around. Try to imagine my favorite (rough around the edges) Jack Elam playing the part of Santa. I really enjoyed the antics in this episode. I am certain you will too.
Watch for some faces you may find hard to recognize on the children. Some went on to do considerable more acting.