Reviews written by registered user

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14 reviews in total 
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0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
Watchable Western, 12 November 2013

Slow moving, but watchable, tho' I think describing it as "John Ford Lite" is being more than charitable. This somewhat off-beat Civil War western pairs an in-decline Errol Flynn with his 3rd wife, Patrice Wymore. Flynn leads a small Confederate patrol out to California on a secret mission from Robert E. Lee to save the Confederacy. A dozen or so years earlier the film's director, William Keighly, had been replaced as director on THE ADVENTURES OF ROBIN HOOD. WB management was disappointed with the early rushes on ...ROBIN HOOD and brought in their workhorse and Master-Of-All-Genres, the great, Michael Curtiz, who picked up the reins and completed what is generally regarded as THE classic swashbuckler.

4 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
Underrated and not shown often enough., 17 February 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This sentimental, seafaring traditions / whaling saga is well cared for by director, Henry Hathaway, and an outstanding cast. Nothing against CASABLANCA or BEN HUR, but they get run to death and it seems to me that TCM or AMC could find some time to show this little gem the light of day now and again. Lionel Barrymore stomps the quarterdeck on crutches, despite acute arthritis which often relegated him to a wheelchair. Under-appreciated, Richard Widmark, is about 180 degrees out from his breakout role as psychopathic hoodlum, Tommy Udo, in 1947's Kiss Of Death. How many outstanding films was Widmark a part of? Way too many to list here. Dean Stockwell (Quantum Leap's holographic Admiral "Al"Calavicci) is excellent as Jed and solid support comes from character pros the likes of John McIntyre, Harry Morgan, Cecil Kellaway and Gene Lockhart, among others. This film is definitely worthwhile viewing.

A favorite scene: Teacher, Gene Lockhart, is unable to break Captain Joy's heart when young Jed takes his exam.

Dragnet (1954)
3 out of 7 people found the following review useful:
A Disappointment, 8 August 2009

1954's DRAGNET is well-cast with Jack Webb's stock company, plus a pre-PALADIN, Richard Boone and pre-CHESTER on GUNSMOKE, Dennis Weaver. However, the plot takes WAY too long to get to an ultimately UNsatisfying conclusion. I am a fan of Jack's but I believe this was his first crack at directing a feature and, unfortunately, it shows. Many scenes drag on for too long (the bar room brawl seems interminable) and as a result, the story just plods along. The running time is listed at only 88 minutes, but it SEEMS longer. The crisp, clean pace of Webb's radio and TV DRAGNET episodes is lost in this full-length treatment.

12 out of 13 people found the following review useful:
Well worth watching, 5 July 2009

I could not disagree more with CHRIS from South Adelaide who I feel really gave this film short shrift. Alec Austen is a commercial artist and Naval reservist called to active duty in WWII. Having long forsaken his Quaker upbringing he is thus completely blindsided when after reporting for duty on a destroyer he finds himself seriously conflicted regarding the taking of life. Alan Ladd, though in decline personally and professionally at this point in his life, is, nevertheless, very good as the troubled Alec. This film is further buoyed by an absolutely outstanding supporting cast including: James Whitmore, Keenan Wynn, William Bendix, Efrem Zimbalist, Jr., Jeanette Nolan and Joey Bishop. Other familiar faces include Perry Lopez,(Cowhand Pete Ramirez in THE LONE RANGER movie and a crewman in MR. ROBERTS) and Ross Bagdasarian who, aided by his chipmunks Alvin, Simon & Theodore, would later gain recording and TV fame as David Seville. The storyline is also unique in that the main WWII theater of operations setting is the Northeast Pacific and the Aleutians. Director Rudolph Mate's other credits as Director or Director of Photography include GILDA, SAHARA (1943) and PRIDE OF THE YANKEES. Alas, it has not yet found it's way to DVD. THE DEEP SIX is not SAVING PRIVATE RYAN or TWELVE O'CLOCK HIGH, it is a solid production worthy of a look.

1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
Now on DVD!, 25 February 2009

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The bad news? This classic send-up of gangster movies and long-time Warner Brothers stars Edward G. Robinson (who the Motion Picture Academy never saw fit to award an Oscar)and Peter Lorre is NOT available among the SIX volumes of the "Looney Tunes Golden Collection".

How "Racketeer Rabbit" missed that cut is mind-boggling, especially after viewing some of the very late 1950s "declining years" cartoons that WERE deemed worthy of inclusion on volume 6. Even worse, it's been announced that Volume 6 is the last of the Golden Collection Series. What's up with that, Doc? The GOOD news is that RACKETEER RABBIT IS available on DVD as a bonus feature with the documentary PUBLIC ENEMIES: THE GOLDEN AGE OF GANGSTER FILMS which also includes the 1953 reworking of the Bugs/Gangsters subject, BUGS AND THUGS.

PUBLIC ENEMIES... is included as part of the boxed set WARNERS GANGSTER COLLECTION, VOLUME 4 but I picked it by itself on eBay. The DVD is worth the 9.95 I paid for just to have the 2 cartoons discussed.

Rocky: "What a minute, coppers, come back! Don't leave me here with that crazy rabbit!"

Correction, 25 February 2009

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

To my knowledge, "Captain Hareblower", the excellent re-hash of "Buccaneer Bunny" is NOT a part of the 6 volume Looney Tunes Golden Collection and is only available on DVD as an extra on the "Captain Horatio Hornblower"DVD. "Buccaneer Bunny" is available on LTGT Volume 5. There is yet a 3rd cartoon very similar in nature starring Bugs Bunny and Yosemite Sam set at sea titled "Mutiny on the Bunny". The twist on the premise is that Sam shanghai's would-be cruise passenger Bugs to replace his deserted crew. The hilarious running gag in this one is the repeated sinking and subsequent relaunching of Sam's ship, "The Sad Sack - Formerly the Jolly Roger."

2 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
No classic, but fun nonetheless., 2 March 2008

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

OK, OK, so it's NOT a classic, but it IS entertaining. I take GREAT exception to SINGLE BLACK MALE's assessment of Victor Mature as an actor, a criticism I can only describe as...IMMATURE (LOL). Victor Mature turned in some EXCELLENT portrayals, notably in MY DARLING CLEMENTINE, KISS OF DEATH and THE ROBE. Also, let me clarify a couple of other comments posted for this film: The train wreck here is NOT the climactic set piece that the one in GREATEST SHOW ON EARTH was and ZACH's (Gilbert Roland) attempt to walk Niagara falls is not this film's climax. As for why Vincent Price was in the cast, here comes my spoiler: The saboteur in the circus' troop turns out NOT to be the often-cast-as-villain, Price, but rather the young, clean cut, all-American boy, fresh from the OZZIE AND HARRIET show, David Nelson. A nice "red herring" to throw the audience off the scent of the real villain. I also thought Peter Lorre's "Skeeter the Clown" was just fine, especially when he is asked what bank watchdog/accountant, Red Buttons' "act" is: "He's a juggler. Juggles figures". Plus, Kathryn Grant (eventually Mrs. Bing Crosby) and Adele Mara both look great in tights!

4 out of 9 people found the following review useful:
Great Movie - Laughable criticism., 22 March 2007

Puh-LEEZE! Enough, already. All you well-meaning folks knocking the historical accuracy of this classic film, you're on the wrong website! It's Hollywood, not HISTORY. You probably think Tennyson's poem is a bad summary of the event, too.

This is a great movie, with an excellent cast, by one of Hollywood's best and most overlooked Directors, Michael Curtiz. You want a laundry list of great movies? Go look up Michael Curtiz whose credits include rescuing THE ADVENTURES OF ROBIN HOOD after William Keighly was excused, CASABLANCA and YANKEE DOODLE DANDY. Throw in a memorable score by one of the best movie composers of all time, Max Steiner (KING KONG, GONE WITH THE WIND).

The Climatic charge is STILL one of the best action sequences you will ever see. Done, as has been previously pointed out, without the aid of computers and 21st century FX, and directed by noted 2nd unit director, B. Reeves Eason, who was also responsible for the 1925 BEN-HUR chariot race as well as the burning of Atlanta for GONE WITH THE WIND.

See this film (On DVD beginning 3/27) and enjoy it for what it is: A sterling example of the Hollywood Dream Factory in it's golden age.

You want to criticize films that purport to be historically accurate? Go jump on JFK or some other piece of Oliver Stone revisionist propaganda.

6 out of 6 people found the following review useful:
On DVD at las, 29 January 2007

With all due respect to HAL-900, Bobby Darin's excellent portrayal as "Little Jim" HAD to be less than subtle in order to allow the also very excellent Robert Duval to play his character as subtly as he did. Gregory Peck is excellent as the stalwart Psychiatrist dealing with medical as well as bureaucratic challenges. Angie Dickinson IS pretty much just for show, but she NEVER looked better. Yes, Peck's 'drunk' is a tad corny but necessary to show that he was not invulnerable to the suffering that whirled about him. Tony Curtis and Larry Storch provide (necessary) comic relief. Modern Psychiatry was still in it's infancy when this movie is set and a long way from where it is today when the movie was produced. Gregory Peck starred in a LOT of excellent films and I number CAPTAIN NEWMAN, MD among them. It is part of TCMs library so catch it if you can.(Added 11/01/08)Huzzah! A new GREGGORY PECK DVD collection will be released November 4th, 2008 and CAPTAIN NEWMAN, MD is one of the titles included along with TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD, CAPE FEAR, ARABESQUE and THE WORLD IN HIS ARMS.

14 out of 16 people found the following review useful:
Real Life Intruded, 8 January 2007

Not a GREAT film, but certainly watchable. You could easily swap June Allyson's "stalwart wife" performance here with her roles in STRATEGIC AIR COMMAND and THE GLENN MILLER STORY. Alan Ladd was an excellent choice for the title role as you can see at this site: Sadly, the ending of the film had to be re-written when Captain McConnell was killed during a test flight of an F86 at Edwards AFB in May of 1954 while the film was still in production. Of Note: McConnell was indeed shot down himself, but he managed to not only nurse his plane to where he could eject and be rescued at sea ("I barely got wet"), he also shot down the Mig (piloted by a Russian "Ace") that had gotten him! He last three kills came on his final day of combat missions whereupon his commanding General ordered his top ACE home.

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