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2/10
Embarrassing bastardized version of a French classic
6 February 2011
Wow, how low can we go" Since this movie was (improperly) advertised as the "English (USA) version of the award-winning French comedy", let me inform readers about the original.

Francis Veber's award-winning comedy classic "Le Diner de Cons" (DdeC) released in 1998 quickly became an international success both artistically as financially. DdeC received numerous honors including six Cesar nominations winning three: best script (Francis Veber), best actor (Jacques Villeret aka Francois Pignon), and best supporting actor (Daniel Prevost aka Lucien Cheval, the Revenue Auditor). The "Cesar du cinema Francais" is similar to our (USA) Oscar Academy Awards and annually rewards the best performance in the various cinema-related specialties from acting to production. DdeC has been used as a teaching model for writing intelligent humorous scripts, inventive editing, and acting in some cinema schools. Veber adapted his script from his play of the same title which premiered in 1993 and has been playing ever since in Europe. It is a masterpiece worth discovering. The script was intelligently written, the quick paced dialog flowed harmoniously as the protagonist's situation deteriorated. The interpretation was sensitive, expressive and flawless.

Back to Dinner for Schmucks: As an American, I found the Hollywood version insulting and demeaning. Trying to bank on the success of the original as is often the case with remakes, you take whatever worked in the first presentation, recycle it, repeat it over, amplify it, mass produce it, etc… In Dinner for Schmucks, you steal an original premise, bastardize a bullet-proof script, exaggerate the humorous moments to absurdity, add profanity and obscenity to the dialogue ("he was searching for her lost clitoris under the table"), mix in some sex scenes, sanitize to ensure (American) political correctness, include most ethnic groups to maximize distribution (i.e. profit margin), the only thing missing may have been to add some farts and burps… You get the picture.

Are we so stupid and ignorant that Hollywood still makes profits feeding us such cheap products? I was insulted having to critique this movie to college students especially since this cinema class had reviewed the French version a few years past. One positive observation: Steve Carell and Paul Rudd did an OK performance as the protagonists unfortunately Carell's role was annoying and exaggerated to plain stupidity as opposed to the social ineptitude of the original performer (Villeret). Jemaine Clement did a believable performance as the artist. As for the real schmuck of this film, it is the director Jay Roach who seems to excel in this type of comedy.

Overall, this movie is a lifeless comedy and a very sad but true representation of what many American film productions have degenerated into: cheap financial profit sources without body or soul. Do not waste your money on this lousy production misrepresented as the "American version of the award-winning French classic comedy". If that is the case then America is in trouble.

Rating: 2 out of 10 for the acting especially Clement's.
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The Red Mill (1927)
9/10
A humorous fairy tale with unbelievably detailed set
3 January 2008
I agree with my predecessor on the beauty and artistry of this masterpiece of the Seventh Art. I offer my hat to TCM for completing an outstanding restoration of a masterpiece of Americana. The musical score that was added this silent film was well chosen and replaces very well the missing dialog.

I would like to bring the attention of the reader on the props and decor used in the movie. The details of the set mimicking the Holland country side complete with its channels, windmills, iced ponds, and buildings are so well detailed with the means of the day. For example, look at at the decoration the bedrooms, the kitchen where Ms. Davis strenuously works, and notice the matching outdoor scenery showing through the kitchen windows. The haunted red mill with it's intricate detail appears right out of a Currier and Yves lithograph. It is fascinating that the director give us such a realistic vision of the set. For example, pay attention to the intricacies of the mechanism powered by the sails (arms) of the windmill as the raging storm shakes the old structure. The entire set is a work of art to preserve as a fine example of the quality and wholesomeness that made Hollywood, the "dream factory", world famous.

I offer my thanks to TCM for preserving such masterpiece and to Michael Picton for such a delightful musical score for generations to enjoy.

PS: The "Burgomaster" or Burgomeester was the town mayor in Holland and a person of considerable power in these small communities.
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9/10
A cute little gem to enjoy with your loved one next to a warm fireplace over a rainy weekend...
17 December 2007
This is a cute and intelligent comedy about a bright attractive woman (Betsy Drake) who is determined to select and marry the right guy, namely Dr. Brown played by Cary Grant. Well, determined she is. Her efforts, the way they backfire, her perseverance and her eventual success all contribute to convince us that "Every Girl should be Married". I highly recommend this movie for couples looking for a romantic light comedy to escape the burden and pain of everyday life. The real life romance between Drake and Grant shows in the realism of the tenderness and attraction of Miss Sims for Dr Brown. This is a top movie with famous cast, solid script and excellent direction that will not lead you wrong.

I was disappointed by poor reviews given by several IMDb readers especially in light that the very same movie received excellent reviews upon its release in 1948 so I would like to explain my positive assessment of this movie and help newcomers form an opinion for themselves. When one evaluates a movie from the past or from a different country, it is important to take into account and consider the era (time frame) the movie was created in, the context of the story (political situation, censorship if any, etc…) and the cultural influence due to location (country of origin) or tradition (social context at the time).

The script: The movie was filmed before I was born but by looking at the reviews of the times, I see that the script writers got a nomination for best written American Comedy. This indicates that they created a "little gem" as judged by their peers (Writers Guild of America) who included some of the best American writers of the century.

The cast: Looking at the main actors, Cary Grant was already established as an actor in 1948 and was not struggling to find work. He was the "eternal gentleman-like bachelor" and worked mostly in "high comedies with polished words". He actually found the scenario promising and recommended Betsy Drake as his supporting actress. Betsy Drake was a classic-trained actress (British Theater) who was first spotted (in the US) by none other than David Selznick, one Hollywood's top iconic producers of the Golden Era (remember "Gone with the Wind"?). This was her first production in the US and may explain "some" stiffness in front of the critical eye of the cameras. She devoted part of her life supporting her older husband, none other than Mr. Grant himself and became a writer. So based on these two references, she must have had something special.

The assertive Miss Sims: Society-wise, 1948 was a transition era for Americans. In these immediate post-war years, returning Veterans and American men in general were shocked by the newfound freedom and autonomy of American women who had to either support the war effort or keep the fort while they were away. The notion of independent and self-reliant women was new if not strange to them, let alone a woman who is determined to go after what SHE wants and not what men want for her. This movie depicted this "coming of age" in a humoristic way. Do not forget also that all Hollywood productions were subject to the strict Production (Hays) Code which dictated that the ultimate role of women was to become wives/mothers over anything else. In other words, the ritual "burps" and "farts" common place in modern American comedies were neither funny nor acceptable.

The reaction at the box-office: Very good since "Every Girl should be Married" was RKO's biggest hit of that year and received positive strokes from the major publications from that period. Enjoy! Lancelot
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Evil Brain from Outer Space (1965 TV Movie)
7/10
Good inoffensive Japanese fifties Sci-Fi forerunner of todays super heroes!
24 November 2007
Warning: Spoilers
I rate this movie 7 for its theme, purpose, country & time it was produced.

This movie is a compilation/compression of the last three one hour features of the "Sūpā Jaiantsu" (Supergiant) series. "Starman" for us or "Spaceman" for European audiences, was Japan's first film superhero and lead the way to future stars such as Ultraman and several animated heroes my own children enjoyed. I highly recommend these movies for people able to look at them with objectiveness and respect for the time-frame they were produced 1957~59. They are also inoffensive for children for parents caring about their youngster's innocent minds. Despite some "ugly" if not "goofy" monsters by today's standards, there is no gratuitous violence or gory scenes and the fight scenes are "gentle" if not dance-like. Special effects match what was available with similar resources like "The Outer Limits" of the mid sixties. Dubbing is average for a production that old which was post-synch in the US –It is also difficult to dub Japanese with English language because of the marked difference in phonetics (sound generation by mouth motion). The original music was replaced with dubbing studio file soundtrack in the US.

One has to be cautious criticizing older features especially of foreign origin and not compare them verbatim to our modern computer-graphic FX-loaded violent features of American TV fame. Back in the mid fifties, Japan was still recovering from the ravages of a horrible war that had devastated all of their major cities. Under US occupation, Japanese elders felt threatened of loosing their ancestral identities and traditions. The recent and too-close-for-comfort Korean War had barely missed Japan and ended in a stalemate at a time when fear of another nuclear holocaust was very fresh and real in their minds.

Shortly after, Japanese "baby boomers" (yes, Japan had their very own boomers too!) rejected their parent's post-war humiliation and needed to believe in something along Japanese customs, fairy tales, and mythology... so Sūpā Jaiantsu or Supergiant was born. Several Supergiant movies feature Starman protecting or defending children from dangers especially from space (i.e. threats for "above"). According to some natives, this theme had roots in the memory and horror of WWII's firebombing campaign over Japan.

I saw these movies in their dubbed and chopped version back in 1964 in Grammar School on our monthly "Midnight Theater" actually shown at 0600 PM midweek. We (kids) were very impressed if not "terrified" by the space creatures but we were all happy that Starman did save the day and the movie ended "like a fairy tale". Forty years later, I was actually touched to relive these same scenes that had fascinated me so much as a kid and impressed me for years to come. I recommended these if you are interested in foreign cinema history or as relatively "clean" thrillers for our younger generation.
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Blue Denim (1959)
8/10
A ageless trip in time when America was still "the Beautiful..."
13 August 2007
Yes, this movie is dated along with many faults that the discriminate movie watcher can point out. It does not have the artistic value of another "dated movie" such as "The Best Years of our Lives, 1946" but this was America in 1959. Yes, it was "risque" just like "Summerplace" of the same era. Unwanted pregnancies were a big problem that our ancestors preferred to keep under silence, Hollywood included. Unwanted/unplanned pregnancies still are, except that many teenagers/young adults just get an abortion(s) or simply swell the ranks of single parents. Sadly enough, the cost to our American society is disastrous: poverty, violence, pain, abuse, drugs, etc. Worst of all, this tragedy is self-perpetuating. Art (the star teenager) had the chance of having parents he finally went to, who supported and helped him. Most teenagers nowadays won't have a parent or a mentor to confide in. I know, given up to relative as a child in the fifties, I spent part of my life helping teenagers in distress until the problem got overwhelming. This movie teaches a lesson and spreads a message for teenagers, parents, families and educators. The props may be "dated", the feelings, our human needs and man/woman's quest for love are not. I highly recommend "Blue Denim" as I pursue my journey to find such a place where values and principles of dignity are still practiced.

"Good is he who learns from his mistakes but much better is the one who learns from someone else's errors" was the moral message that "Blue Denim's" Director was telling us.
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Claudia (1943)
9/10
Wholesome, Sweet, Refreshing and Inspiring Movie...
20 December 2006
I rate this movie highly not necessarily for its cinematographic values (it is no "Citizen Kane") but for its depiction of the values and principles that guided our American ancestors. America was engaged in the cruelest war it has faced since the Civil War. Husbands and sons are suffering on foreign lands, news are censored, military operations are "blacked-out"; families back home need something to believe in, beliefs to cling on to especially when they are mourning the loss of loved ones. Rural Connecticutt, the scenery, the community, the house in which Claudia lived, feel like a breath of fresh air to the viewer and makes us forget our sorrows.

Hollywood produced many movies to help in America's war effort, directly (propaganda) or indirectly (fostering our countries' ideals). This is one of these movies. It reveals, by ricochet perhaps, the beauty of American life, the kindness of people, the innocence of love in its broad meaning. Despite the rationing and the tragedy of the war years, it offered our parents, hope that life could be and was beautiful, that these principles were worth fighting for. It also projected an ideal for the population to emulate, a code of conduct so to speak. This way of thinking/living was spread all over the country through thousands of community theaters. It helped guide a generation long gone in the aftermath of the great depression and the lean war years ahead.

In our modern society where trouble, murder, and sins of mankind get front page in the news and create constant fear and lingering anxiety among us, movies like "Claudia" and its sequel bring comfort and peace in our minds. This film reminds us of who we once were, loving individuals who cared for one another. It brings us back at a time when we, Americans, cared for one another, when we would pick-up hitch-hikers, when we would lend money to friends, when the local bank would help you out of financial difficulty. Our country stood for something and provided relief and shelter to the rest of the world.

I give my appreciation to the director, the writers and the cast who made this movie, a model of Americana for us to follow. I also appreciate all the film lovers who take the time and effort to enlighten the users of IMDb with their details and comments about the movies they review. May God Bless America!

Signed: A Disabled Veteran of the War against Terrorism.
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The Pilot (1980)
9/10
A Must-See for all Pilots whether drinking or not!
1 December 2006
Warning: Spoilers
This is the most realistic flying movie I have seen for pilots, experienced veterans or future aviators alike. It depicts the real workings of Air Traffic Control, Airline Dispatch Centers, and cockpit crew coordination. The airliners used in the movie may be outdated (like me) but the movie still captures the essence and intensity of airline pilots daily life. The many melodramatic movies that tried to cash-in on the success of the original "Airport (1970)" ridiculed the seriousness and the professionalism expected from Airline Rated Pilots. "The Pilot" was refreshing story to see, a model for future aviators to emulate.

The story follows the life of a senior airline pilot, member of a rare breed of aviators, the "born-to-fly" type. Captain Hagan (Cliff Robertson) has been flying all his life, he was born to fly. He flew at every "flight levels": private, military, and finally airline transport. In his time off, he flies his own airplane whereas most professionals go on to enjoy other activities. Captain Hagan has developed a sixth sense for flying as he forms a single entity with the aircraft. He feels the air flowing over the airfoil surfaces and communicates with the jetliner through the controls.

Despite his safety record and his professionalism, Captain Hagan has a terrible secret, he is an alcoholic. Like a few former military fliers, he has learned to deal with the stresses of flying, the pain of loosing fellow pilots, the hardship of long war patrols with alcohol. Now he must deal with his disease and the movie follows his journey through recovery with the help of a controversial physician, Dr. O'Brian (Milo O'Shea).

Back on his "castle", Diane Baker plays the role of Pat Simpson, his supportive, sensitive, and affectionate sweetheart; in a sense, not an unusual scenario for some professional pilots. Under her tender eyes, he taxis out his acrobatic airplane and takes-off in the blue yonder where he finds peace and serenity. The end of the movie is plausible and I will let the viewer make their own critique.

Overall, I highly recommend this movie for anyone who wants a realistic non-Hollywood look at the rigors of airline flying along with the book "Tips to Fly by" by Richard Collins. Enjoy and fly safe!
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8/10
A Landmark Movie that Shook the French Canadian Community for Ever!
9 November 2006
Thanks to those who gave positive strokes to this early Quebec film production! In this era when Canadian culture is fighting for its survival under an inundation/flood of mostly violent mass produced mediocre films from their southern neighbor, "La Petite Aurore" 1952 was a first/second local French Canadian attempt to tell a story that mattered to the community. Provided with a meager budget, poor equipment, inexperienced support and rookie actors, Aurore did extremely well for the days. It was for the time, the best that could be done with the means at hand AND IT WAS A FIRST (or second)for the French Canadian cinema in it's infancy. This movie is also unique because it specifically touched a population who was mostly living under the same conditions and religious societal structure that existed in the community where the film drama took place. Most viewers identified to the players involved in the movie. Finally, the distribution of this movie was to expose the horrible demise of an innocent child that took place under the nose of a mute "anytowm Quebec" under circumstances that were so common at the time (infantile death, high maternal mortality, high farm accident rates for the men, and rural poverty). Imagine the reaction of our American cousins if we replaced their sitcoms with humor from BBC (England) and the rest with Miniseries from Radio Canada, enough to get us invaded! French Canadians lived in a closed circuit community, often treated as tenants or second rated citizens of a land they owned (along with the natives) under the scrutiny of wealthy English speaking manufacturers & nobility. The feelings expressed in this production had been experienced by each Quebecois of that era. Sure, it did not had the Hollywood luster or polish and the depth of French made movies but it addressed issues and hardships that poor large rural French Canadian families dealt with on a daily basis and could identify with very well. I offer my admiration and respect to all our ancestors who paid with their life, for the heritage we hopefully enjoy. For those interested in an interactive investigation of the true story of this young martyr, please go to the following websites in English and Francais: http://www.canadianmysteries.ca/sites/gagnon/indexen.html Sincerely, Guy "Lancelot" Lapointe-Nowlan or Lancelot1953@msn.com
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7/10
Americana on the eve of loosing it's innocence...
21 September 2006
"Joy in the Morning" is a touching and revealing movie about the way Americans liked or wished to project their culture. Consider going back to 1965, the "American Dream" is being shaken and eroded several times by movies such as Peyton Place (1957), Summer Place (1959), Splendor in the Grass (1961), The Chase (1965)... We are about to loose our innocence as reports of fighting in a still obscure country in South East Asia are growing the news headlines. Any movie has to be enjoyed or critiqued in the context/era/location it was produced. I grew up in those insecure days torn between the "good ol' American Boy image" and that of a "Beatnik". For those who do not know or remember, we were not supposed to have any sexuality then. Good girls (and most good guys) were marrying as virgins, that is until Dr Kinsey came out with his shocking ground-breaking study on Sexuality that proved otherwise. Television and movies were heavily censored, violence was many times more acceptable than nudity. Sexual desires/acts had to be "hinted to" or assumed by it's consequences (such as babies) on the big screen.

Joy in the Morning is a melodramatic depiction of a reality that is unfortunately "too real" and "too common" as I would find out in my later years. The themes depicted, the tragedies and the conflicts are ageless and would be retold successfully time over (The Graduate 1967, Love Story 1970...). Despite what powers to be want us to believe, love is ... "what makes the world go round" and the only reason we are on earth for besides survival. We (man/woman) could not live a fulfilling life if it was not for love regardless of who it is directed at (spouse, family, friends...). This is why this movie did hit a sensitive area in my heart. It is refreshing to look at what life was supposed to be then with good production values, excellent music score, and the hope that one day, I too will find the right person for me.

Overall, Joy in the Morning is a sweet and realistic story of the times to enjoy with your loved one on the couch, sipping a soda and eating popcorn, like the good old days...
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10/10
A French Masterpiece about the Tragedy of a Simple Man's Life
12 September 2006
Warning: Spoilers
This is a painfully realistic story bringing to the surface the most basic, noble if not primitive human instincts.

The setting is simple but the background context is more complex. As we are looking back at a story filmed on the eve of the most devastating war in world history, in the country that will serve once again as the killing ground where thousands will die. The times, 1939 and France is still bearing the emotional scars from the First World War (La Grande Guerre) and recovering slowly from the United States led Great World Depression. Germany has rearmed, reoccupied it's common territory, the Rhineland under an obscure and belligerent new leader, Adolf Hitler. Times are uncertain, world news are not good, Fascism and Communism are gaining ground in several countries that France is intimately tied to (Spain, Italy, Germany…). The population is insecure especially since the "Grande Guerre" (WW I) had brought human suffering to an atrocity and scale never envisaged before with gas warfare, aerial bombardment, machine guns to name a few.

On a smaller scale, under the shadow of the storm building over the world horizon, a man, described as a "simple unfortunate manual laborer" has just killed another man and barricades himself on the top floor of the boarding house he stays at. Cornered like a trapped animal, he awaits his fate by the forces of justice while curious people are assembling in the street to witness the outcome.

The victim lays on the floor as he yells his state of mind to the bystanders in the street. And now, through a series of flashbacks, he reviews the main events of his existence that brought him to his last hours of his destiny, and what a pitiful life has it been for Francois (Jean Gabin). The tragedy of his youth is not only written in the features of his facial expression but also in the way he speaks, the harsh tone of his voice, the cynicism expressed in the choice of his words. We learned that he was raised as an orphan in a state run agency (l'Enfance). He held many jobs and his only rare possessions surround him in this spartan attic room, a bicycle, a bed, a table, a desk with a mirror riddled with bullet holes (I think) and a few pictures of better days cycling. As he winds his mechanical alarm clock, we discover that is entire day consists of waking up in the morning, working senselessly all day, and coming back late to get some sleep. He is not getting anywhere, just surviving the absurdity of life. I almost forgot, there is also a little medallion (broche) like my grand mother used to wear, attached to the side of his mirror. Remember this medallion...

In another flashback, we find out that in the arrid winter of Francois' life, a little flower of hope grew, her name was Francoise. She was young, innocent and fragile. She too had suffered and had been raised as an orphan. Francois falls in love, discovering hope possibly for the first time in his dark life. Francois, who has lived so devoid of all the basic human needs now finds "wholeness", Francoise completes him and soothes all his past pain as they consume each other in a green house, surrounded by flowers like the Garden of Eden. They even dream about picking lilacs at Easter, in the country. Strangely enough, outside of this flowery oasis is a fenced shaded alley, overlooking a noisy railroad track where a steam locomotive hurls by.

Unfortunately, winter was not over for Francois yet as an older man, a cruel animal trainer called "Valentin", through some machiavellic explanations claims the rights to Francois' protégée and salvation. Francois, angered, resists the impulse of aggression, helped by Francoise's loving reassurance. In one last flashback, Valentin returns and deal a cruel blow to Francois, a devastating final revelation which will cause his own demise and end Francois' hopes for a future. The details of the revelation and the outcome of the story are for the viewer to discover.

Technically, taken in the context and time this picture was filmed, the movie is a masterpiece both in the story as in the cinematography. Francois' struggle for a life that is meaningless or ludicrous is the fate that most of humanity endures. All of us (I hope) have felt at one time or the other the energizing uplifting joy of love and experienced the relief from pain that it can bring. The tragedy of Francois' life is very real, very human and affects many of us. For those who are following the movie from the English sub-titles, there is confusion in the dialogues at the end when Francoise is talking with Clara about her love: Francoise is the feminine version of the masculine name Francois. It is difficult at times to differentiate in the dialogue which one is the speaker referring to and the translator switched the names but it does not change the overall meaning of the drama.

In summary, this cinematographic masterpiece reminded me that love is the only thing that makes life worth living, may be the last memory that a dying person remembers… and I have seen a lot of people die… as a war Disabled Veteran.
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8/10
Dated story but Feelings and Romance Timeless!
25 August 2006
Warning: Spoilers
This is a cute romantic gem where a young Texan Private soldier (James Stewart) is receiving his final training prior to shipping to WW1-torn Europe when he is almost run over by a wealthy New York socialite Daisy Heath (Margaret Sullavan). After kind of "playing either hard to get or annoyed", she realizes that he is going to war and probably won't come back. Her eternal fiancé Sam (Walter Pigeon) is a true gentleman in doing a good deed to give some hope to this poor condemned soldier. Daisy (who is very well educated in real life – Harvard) initially doing a kind act of the heart is slowly seduced by the simplicity and genuineness of this young cowboy's heart.

This story touched me deeply and I identified strongly to it. Margaret Sullavan is very articulate and so kind that she accepts to marry this young recruit because to him "she is a dream come true that may keep him alive during the years of hell that he will endure…" Years, Americans were very patriotic and draft/conscription was a fact of life for most young males. As a Veteran of three wars (Kosovo, Afghanistan and Iraq), I paid dearly for my own dreams of saving my country from the "commies" - I was raised in the late fifties. On one day of May 2003, on my 118th mission, my number came up; I woke up minutes later... disabled for life.

I witnessed war, I saw destruction, and I experienced fear not to say terror. I shared room with many dismembered service members, some did not make it, some died with me as their only companion. Most of the expectant men that could talk, told me about their loved ones, often a young woman they never had the courage to ask in marriage before leaving... As an officer, I wrote many notes to "loved ones" as I promised my troops. The times may have changed in America, may be too much for our own good but basic human needs do not... we still need the love, the hope, the dream (so nicely expressed by "Daisy" in "The Shopworn Angel") that someone special does care back home.

May God Bless America and brings justice to the evils that are eroding our country. Bring our troops back. And for the readers of my comments, please, for the memory of all the men/women that gave their lives for this country, treat our returning troops with respect and love. Thank you.
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8/10
Cute Light Romantic Comedy
15 August 2006
Warning: Spoilers
Lovin' the Ladies is a cute light romantic comedy that has to be enjoyed in the context when it was filmed (1930). The script is closely based on the play "I Love You" by William Le Baron who also produced this movie. All the action takes place "on stage" on the property of Mr. Farnsworth and could have been easily recreated on a Broadway Stage.

In a nutshell, the action follows the tribulation of Peter Darby, an electrician (Richard Dix) who becomes the willing participant of a bet between a rich client, Farnsworth (Allen Kearns) and his socialite friend Van Horne (Selmer Jackson). The wager is that under optimal circumstances (environment, full moon, music, poetry…), the mood makes it impossible for any woman to resist falling in love with any man.

Farnsworth makes all the necessary arrangements to set the mood and chooses a stand-offish and upper-lipped Miss Duncan (Renée Macready) as the target of the bet. Darby, nicely dressed and combed, adapts quickly to his new role and performs with presence and class as a socialite. Miss Duncan is not very impressed by his candor but Miss Bently (Lois Wilson), Farnsworth's own fiancée, becomes very sensitive to his charms. I will let the viewer guess the denouement or enjoy the happy ending.

Richard Dix becomes very articulate and distinguished as he ascends the social ladder to the upper class. Lois Wilson remains adorable and charming as the cute innocent fiancée. The setting that Farnsworth has prepared for Darby to work his "seductive magic" is just gorgeous and makes us nostalgic of an era long gone. The high ceilings, the gigantic French doors, the stone balcony overlooking a beautiful misty garden under the romantic reflection of a full moon on the distant waters are just magnificent. Having been raised in the sixties, I miss the romance and the respect that Americans seemed to have for one another "back then".

The dialog is well written, fast paced and holds the viewer relatively captive especially since nearly all the action takes place on the set (Farnsworth's residence, I assume). I enjoyed this movie that I had a chance to view on Turner Classic Movie Channel. Going back to our long forgotten human values is such a relief from the daily gratuitous violence and profanity that Hollywood overwhelms us with.
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Peyton Place (1957)
10/10
Picturesque Character Study of the Emotional Life of Small Town USA
1 August 2006
Peyton Place is a great and realistic observation of human behavior taken in the context of when and where it was written, no matter how shocking truth may appear. After years of medical practice, I have lived many experiences not unlike that of Dr. Swain in this novel/movie. I saw "Peyton Place" for the first time in my late forties as part of a CineClub presentation. I grew up naively in a small North East farm town in the late 50's. My grand uncle was our local Country Doctor. I was frightened if not scandalized by the big city lifestyle when I moved to the city to attend medical school. He assured me that "we" had the same "scandals" in our community, it was just "hidden or kept secret". In all honesty, I had already witnessed some of these issues as they shook my own family of origin. Later, I returned to practice in a rural town. As I got closer to the native citizens, I discovered many secrets, secrets not unlike some of the tragic events that took Peyton Place by storm. As I grew older (and hopefully wiser), I realized that each town has their own "Peyton Place". It's all around us, it's is part of our human nature, part of it is in each one of us. Mrs. Metalious, the author of this great novel, paid the price of her own honesty with her life. This novel and the movie that it is based on, have to be taken in the time context it was created. Unfortunately, many of these events are still taking place around us today. I have witnessed them through my interaction with many patients and friends. Love, lust, passion, ambition, greed, envy... are all basic instincts that drive us through the meanders of life, some leading us to good outcomes others to tragedy. I recently returned from our occupation in Iraq where I was severely injured in combat, ending my career as a physician. I saw the best and also the worst of what man can do to mankind. I witnessed many issues that I saw in Peyton Place, only on a larger scale. Peyton Place bears witness to a part of the world we live in, it is in all of us. The events taking place in her youth were the source of Grace Metalious' novel and shaped the course of her story. I highly recommend this movie, it is part of history, our American history, good or bad. Finally, I greatly appreciate all the viewers that take time to share their opinion about movies with the readers through IMDb's Comments Place. May God or your "Higher Power" bless you all, GLN.
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