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Funny Face (1957)
Fred and Audrey and Kay Might contain spoiler
I rated the movie a 4 because of the second half of the movie. Kay as a Woman's magazine editor was wonderful. Exaggerated her bossiness but enjoyable never the less.
Contrary to many of the reviewers I think the match between Fred and Audrey was wonderful throughout the movie. Fred Astaire had a sexiness that could easily sweep a woman off her feet regardless of age. If you can possibly get to see the movie "The Pleasure of His Company" which I believe has not been released officially on DVD, you learn when Fred no longer had the sexiness to attract women young or old. Audrey metamorphosis into a divine model while slightly hard to believe, it makes no difference. I want to believe it!
My problem with Kay Thompson is in the second half of the movie. Kay doing a song and dance routine seemed ridiculously out of place. She appeared to be an utter clod. The director should have gotten someone else or just had Fred dancing and singing alone.
Small Town Girl (1953)
I think this musical is highly underrated. Yes the plot is not particularly original, but how many are original. The plot and acting are not a strong point, but it's a musical. To me this is better than half the Astaire Rogers musicals which I do love. The singing by Nat King Cole and Jane Powell are superb. Plus there are so many wonderful character actors in this like SZ Sakal, Billie Burke and Chill Wills. Their comedy is really great. The dances are by Busby Berkeley and music by Andre Previn. How can you ask for more? It should be remastered and get higher reviews by the critics. I was overwhelmed by the Take me to Broadway number by Bobby Van. This is the best Ann Miller I have seen. She did at least two fabulous tap dancing numbers including a splashy flamenco dance near the end.
Divorce American Style (1967)
Absurd plot, good portrayal of the legal system
This movie is too absurd for words. I find it really upsetting that Debbie Reynolds and Dick Van Dyke two stars known for their great physical humor and perkiness are totally unable to breathe real life into their parts. It is not humor nor sarcasm nor social commentary, nor drama. There is no understanding of the characters and their motivations.
What impressed me as one who handled many divorces is the partly believable scenes in the lawyers' office and the courtroom. Non lawyers will think this is satire of what goes on. In fact it grossly understates what goes on in the court system in a divorce. It is a very messy process that often takes years to unravel. It causes unbelievable harm to the children and both spouses. Both parties are made to feel like criminals. It also largely impoverishes both spouses and prevents them from going on with their lives. The no fault system that now exists does little to heal the pain. There are two scenes which take place in a lawyers office which is called mediation and in the courtroom. What actually goes on is a lot of screaming by the clients about the unfairness and lying that occurs. What is not understood by the lay public is that their anger is extremely painful to the lawyers and judges as well. Lawyers are also traumatized by the bloody duel and deal with it by acting civilly to each other (hopefully). The lawyers' social chit chat is their way to break the tension. It prevents the lawyers from going over the deep end.
Män som hatar kvinnor (2009)
If reviewers think that a movie with a tedious (3 hours) story line made up primarily of a how to guide to sadomasochism, bondage and discipline, serial rape and serial murder is a great movie it makes me really sad. I would have walked out of the movie but I did not want to embarrass my friends who brought me to see it. The sex was simulated but the violence was very explicit. There were numerous scenes of torture as well. While many felt the movie was well acted and well directed I would also disagree. The motivations of the characters were very unclear. For the most part the only emotions people showed were hate and glee over causing others physical pain on the one hand and the screams of physical pain by the victims on the other. As a matter of fact the emotions people showed were closer to those seen in a psycho ward. However, I do think the reason there is so poor character development and motivation is due to bad acting and directing. I must admit I do not understand why people go to bull fights either just to see animals being tortured.
Since I first posted this review, I have read the last two books of the Millennium Trilogy. They are masterpieces. I disagree quite emphatically with those who say the pictures follow the books. Stieg Larsson through his translator, carefully develops characters and the violence while it does occur is a minor part of the books. The most glaring difference is the nuance of the books. The books are spy, murder detective thrillers to be sure, but the underlying purpose of the books is to promote a scathing indictment of Swedish society after the cold war. Each volume tackles a different aspect of Swedish society. Human trafficking, internal secret police operations and corruption in the corporate world.
Do Not Disturb (1965)
One of Doris Days Best
I taped this movie off of American Movie Classics and its certainly one of her top movies. She is certainly not the virgin goddess we are used to seeing. It tells a truth about marriage in the early sixties before womens liberation. Rod Taylor is excellent as the no nonsense businessman who also knows how to charm but forgets that he has to balance his business life with his married life to the very charming and sexy Doris Day. She is as charming here as in the Glass Bottom Boat which has been released on DVD. This one has it all jealousy, sensuality, an excellent script and good casting. Doris Day needs to fend off the boredom that comes with being the lady of the house. She charms the men and she charms the children and she charms the animals. These Americans in London are the exact opposite of the ugly Americans. You will like this one if you can get your hands on it.
The Awful Truth (1937)
My favorite Cary Grant movie
This is the best of the screwball comedies with Dunne and Grant equally matched. It has puzzled me though that the more I read the subtitles in the DVD and hear the dialog I am convinced the two characters were each having extramarital affairs. It is never made explicit and each one denies they were having affairs but not convincingly. It was clearly the director's intent to make their fidelity ambiguous. Freudian slips and double entendre are used instead.
Was this done by the director because of the Hays Code and how did the public react to all the innuendo about infidelity in the film at the time of release?
Victory at Sea (1952)
How many editions are there of Victory at Sea
I received a set of duds of Victory at Sea dated 1952. However there was a color narration from Peter Graves before each episode. The general narration was given by Leonard Graves.
However you list an introducer as Michael Lewis as part of the television series.
Then another Victory at Sea for 1954 theatrical release lists Alexander Scourby as the narrator. While there are biographies of Peter Graves and Alexander Scourby I cannot find biographies of Leonard Graves or Michael Lewis.
Are Michael Lewis and Leonard Graves pseudonyms for someone else.