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What Horror and Sc-Fi films have you seen lately?

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Western Guy
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Re: What Horror and Sc-Fi films have you seen lately?

Postby Western Guy » October 5th, 2014, 8:59 pm

Only when the line in the supermarket is too long.

And I'm still waiting on the latest update on Bat Boy.

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Joe Macclesfield
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Re: What Horror and Sc-Fi films have you seen lately?

Postby Joe Macclesfield » October 5th, 2014, 11:53 pm

Just came upon the following by Gary Westfahl (unknown to me till now): "Lon Chaney Jr. never gave a good performance in a horror or science fiction film. With his extremely limited talents, the only roles he could really play were ordinary people...or less than ordinary people...like Lenny...his only competetent portrayal." Westfahl continues - at length. His dismissal of Chaney's performance as the Frankenstein monster as "inert and expressionless" ignores the fact that that is, actually, the way it was scripted (see Don G. Smith's bio. of Chaney). Westfahl's sermon ends (as pompously as it began): "Chaney Jr. Made EVERY MOVIE (my emphasis) he was in worse...and people who call themselves film critics should be able to recognize that."(!) This - to me - is extraordinarily vitriolic and completely unfair!
"...Then as a bee, which among weeds doth fall,
Which seem sweet floures with lustre fresh and gay,
She lights on that, and this, and tasteth all,
But pleasd with none doth rise and sore away..."

Western Guy
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Joined: March 26th, 2012, 1:19 pm
Location: Winnipeg, Canada

Re: What Horror and Sc-Fi films have you seen lately?

Postby Western Guy » October 6th, 2014, 10:51 am

Yeah, Chaney (at least as far as his parts in horror films are concerned) gets a pretty bum deal by almost everyone . . . except his fans. I confess that outside of THE WOLF MAN I prefer him more in his mainstream roles. He's very much a proletarian performer IMO. And I mean that not in a bad way. Consider OF MICE AND MEN, HIGH NOON, THE DEFIANT ONES and NOT AS A STRANGER. Obviously Stanley Kramer liked using Chaney - and even if the roles in those films weren't that big, Chaney did very well in each.

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Joe Macclesfield
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Re: What Horror and Sc-Fi films have you seen lately?

Postby Joe Macclesfield » October 6th, 2014, 1:20 pm

He's pretty good as "Big Mac" in I Died a Thousand Times too.
"...Then as a bee, which among weeds doth fall,
Which seem sweet floures with lustre fresh and gay,
She lights on that, and this, and tasteth all,
But pleasd with none doth rise and sore away..."

Western Guy
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Joined: March 26th, 2012, 1:19 pm
Location: Winnipeg, Canada

Re: What Horror and Sc-Fi films have you seen lately?

Postby Western Guy » October 6th, 2014, 1:41 pm

Forgot about that one, reprising the Donald MacBride role. But next to THE WOLF MAN I'd have to say Chaney's most effective and affecting role is as the guardian/chauffeur in SPIDER BABY. He really gives a fine performance.

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Joe Macclesfield
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Re: What Horror and Sc-Fi films have you seen lately?

Postby Joe Macclesfield » October 6th, 2014, 2:49 pm

He's a good singer too!
"...Then as a bee, which among weeds doth fall,
Which seem sweet floures with lustre fresh and gay,
She lights on that, and this, and tasteth all,
But pleasd with none doth rise and sore away..."

Western Guy
Posts: 1702
Joined: March 26th, 2012, 1:19 pm
Location: Winnipeg, Canada

Re: What Horror and Sc-Fi films have you seen lately?

Postby Western Guy » October 6th, 2014, 10:56 pm

Well . . . I wouldn't necessarily say that. Way too many years of too much booze and tobacco.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G9Hl7C0fj4g

But here's a treat:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DgXt9To765g

And:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s1VfY8IJ0qE

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Joe Macclesfield
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Re: What Horror and Sc-Fi films have you seen lately?

Postby Joe Macclesfield » October 7th, 2014, 1:33 am

Lon was no singer, it's true. Apropos to your mention of too much booze and tobacco W.G. My great friend, Eddie Coe, was a good bass. I met Eddie through my job, as a homecarer. Eddie was of the same generation as my dad (born 1921). He had a collection consisting of over 300 78rpm records. He and I hit it off the moment we met ('cause I identified, so strongly, with my dad and his times), I knew all Eddie's heroes and we spent many happy hours listening to, and discussing singers and music (amongst other things). Eddie was a smoker. It was Eddie's observation (and it's true) that many of the great singers of the past (including Caruso) were heavy smokers. Eddie died, aged 87, in May, 2009; and I still miss him!
"...Then as a bee, which among weeds doth fall,
Which seem sweet floures with lustre fresh and gay,
She lights on that, and this, and tasteth all,
But pleasd with none doth rise and sore away..."

Western Guy
Posts: 1702
Joined: March 26th, 2012, 1:19 pm
Location: Winnipeg, Canada

Re: What Horror and Sc-Fi films have you seen lately?

Postby Western Guy » October 7th, 2014, 7:24 am

Velvet-voiced Nat King Cole was another. Dead of lung cancer at just 45.The irony was that three-pack-a-day smoker Cole believed that cigarettes helped improve his singing voice.

Then there's Sammy Davis, Jr. and Dean Martin . . . throat and lung cancer, respectively. Two great entertainers who were rarely seen without a cigarette in their hand.

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Joe Macclesfield
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Re: What Horror and Sc-Fi films have you seen lately?

Postby Joe Macclesfield » October 7th, 2014, 1:57 pm

Nat King Cole was my dad's favourite. Nat's voice was very gravelly on his last recordings--but it doesn't detract from the sound. I remember Sammy Davis Jr. appearing on a British TV chat show, not long before he died; and saying: "If I'd known I was going to be around this long, I'd have taken better care of myself." I also read somewhere that Dean Martin's apparent fondness for alcoholic liquid refreshment was a bit of a pose.

P.S. Great links, W.G.
Monster Holiday: surprisingly well produced, good session musicians!
"...Then as a bee, which among weeds doth fall,
Which seem sweet floures with lustre fresh and gay,
She lights on that, and this, and tasteth all,
But pleasd with none doth rise and sore away..."

Western Guy
Posts: 1702
Joined: March 26th, 2012, 1:19 pm
Location: Winnipeg, Canada

Re: What Horror and Sc-Fi films have you seen lately?

Postby Western Guy » October 7th, 2014, 2:26 pm

Joe, my surrogate mother Dolores Fuller knew all of these folks. She was especially close to Nat King Cole and even wrote some of his songs. She knew the Rat Pack (even dated Sinatra when he was at a low ebb in his personal and professional life) and had only nice things to say about "the boys." Dino's onstage boozing truly was an act. From what I was told, his beverage was apple juice. Dolores was very much into the Vegas entertainment scene back during the days of "the summit" and said that next to Joey Bishop (whom I briefly got to know) Dino was the most reserved of the group. Frank Sinatra liked to stay up all night and party, Sammy was loyal to Frank and pretty much followed suit. Joey was a homebody and Dino - after maybe mingling with patrons at The Sands' gambling tables, preferred to go up to his room where he'd either read comic books or watch Westerns on television.

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Joe Macclesfield
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Re: What Horror and Sc-Fi films have you seen lately?

Postby Joe Macclesfield » October 7th, 2014, 7:04 pm

I'd like to read Dolores's book W.G., her story sounds fascinating. I saw the movie about Ed Wood, some time ago. Although entertaining, I think it presents a misleading impression of Bela.
"...Then as a bee, which among weeds doth fall,
Which seem sweet floures with lustre fresh and gay,
She lights on that, and this, and tasteth all,
But pleasd with none doth rise and sore away..."

Western Guy
Posts: 1702
Joined: March 26th, 2012, 1:19 pm
Location: Winnipeg, Canada

Re: What Horror and Sc-Fi films have you seen lately?

Postby Western Guy » October 7th, 2014, 7:36 pm

According to Dolores it totally does. Bela was not the bitter and brittle character portrayed (though splendidly) by Martin Landau during the time Dolores knew him. Nor could she ever recall him using the foul language as displayed in the Burton film. She claimed he was always a gentleman and was a frequent dinner guest at her house during the time she and Eddie were together, favoring her Hungarian goulash and spaghetti meals. Afterwards Bela would lift Dolores's son Darryl (who passed away during the time I was with them in Vegas - in fact, I was a pallbearer and delivered the eulogy at Dolores's request) onto his knee and tell him bedtime stories. Unfortunately, the drug addiction part was true as was the reason for Dolores's and Eddie's breakup. Dolores was quite candid about that but Bela was not a user for kicks. It did stem from a medical problem.

To this day I feel blessed that Dolores and her husband, film scholar and former director at AMPAS Dr. Philip Chamberlin accepted me as family. They were amazing, wonderful people, God bless them.

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Joe Macclesfield
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Re: What Horror and Sc-Fi films have you seen lately?

Postby Joe Macclesfield » October 7th, 2014, 8:27 pm

Came across a very promising looking title while online yesterday: NO TRAVELER RETURNS (I think, was the title), covering Bela's last years. Another volume from BearManor Media; another item for the shopping list.
"...Then as a bee, which among weeds doth fall,
Which seem sweet floures with lustre fresh and gay,
She lights on that, and this, and tasteth all,
But pleasd with none doth rise and sore away..."

Western Guy
Posts: 1702
Joined: March 26th, 2012, 1:19 pm
Location: Winnipeg, Canada

Re: What Horror and Sc-Fi films have you seen lately?

Postby Western Guy » October 7th, 2014, 8:41 pm

Yes Joe, I believe that volume deals with Bela's later days as a stage performer. A far cry from his earlier Broadway triumph as DRACULA.


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