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Classics Around The Dial

Films, TV shows, and books of the 'modern' era

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Re: Classics Around The Dial

Postby moira finnie » February 21st, 2011, 2:37 pm

Fox Movie Channel has been unearthing some obscure films that might be worth a look. Here's a few classics, remakes, film noirs, westerns, caper flicks, as well as interesting failures in the next few days on Tuesday and Friday:

Tuesday, Febuary 22
6:00 am
THE MUDLARK (1950)
Offbeat drama of reclusive Queen Victoria (Irene Dunne and her encounter with a "mudlark" (Andrew Ray), an English steet child who breaks into Windsor Castle just to catch a glimpse of her.
Cast: Irene Dunne, Alec Guinness, Beatrice Campbell, Finlay Currie, Andrew Ray
Director: Jean Negulesco (I think that this may be Negulesco's last black and white film)

8:00 am
SEVENTH HEAVEN (1937)
A mistreated Parisian street girl (Simone Simon) falls in love with a sewer worker (James Stewart).
Cast: James Stewart, Simone Simon, Sig Ruman, Jean Hersholt.
Strangely effective at times, but not a patch on Borzage's silent with Charles Farrel-Janet Gaynor. I like Simone Simon, though she's not a very expressive actress, at least in English.
Director: Henry King

10:00 am
PEOPLE WILL TALK (1951)
Cary Grant is a successful and well-liked doctor who marries a student made pregnant by another man and must answer charges relating to his past when his controversial methods have made him the target of a witch-hunt by a small-minded colleague (H Cronyn)
Cast: Cary Grant, Jeanne Crain, Hume Cronyn, Walter Slezak, Finlay Currie
Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
A Joe Mankiewicz misfire, but an entertaining, sometimes moving story that gives Finlay Currie a good role as the walking dead, Walter Slezak and Cary Grant time to play Brahms and model train buffs, Jeanne Crain coping with an unwed pregnancy and Hume Cronyn doing his snarling prune imitation. It can't be all bad.

12:00 pm
THE RAINS OF RANCHIPUR (1955)
Richard Burton and Lana Turner struggle between romance and duty when a severe monsoon threatens their lives in Pakistan. Remake of "The Rains Came".
Cast: Richard Burton, Lana Turner, Joan Caulfield, Michael Rennie, Fred Macmurray
Director: Jean Negulesco (Danger: Negulesco with CinemaScope + Color=Somewhat Unfortunate Remake of Earlier Movie). At least Michael Rennie makes a more believable bad aristocrat than Nigel Bruce ever did. But Tyrone Power eclipsed by the talented Burton in the same outlandish role? Power entered into the fantasy of it all wholeheartedly (or at least he appeared to prior to WWII). Burton always looked slightly ashamed.

2:00 pm
A HATFUL OF RAIN (1957)
From the director of "High Noon" and "From Here To Eternity", this is the story of a Korean war veteran (Don Murray) who returns home and hides his morphine addiction from his wife (Eva Murray Saint) and family. (Not available on DVD.)
Cast: Eva marie Saint, Don Murray, Tony Franciosa, Lloyd Nolan, Henry Silva
Director: Fred Zinnemann
Despite some method overacting from Tony F., the location shooting in the NYC projects, and the supporting cast, particularly by Lloyd Nolan and Henry Silva, and Murray's blend of self-pity and self-loathing still make this harrowing viewing.

THE LEGEND OF HELLHOUSE (1973)
Four people (Franklin, McDowall, Revill, Hunnicut) are hired by an eccentric millionaire to see if his house is haunted.
Cast: Pamela Franklin, Roddy Mcdowall, Clive Revill, Gayle Hunnicutt, Roland Culver
Director: John Hough
McDowall and Franklin make this haunted house movie enjoyable.

Wed. February 23
12:30 am
SUSPIRIA (1977)
Italian horror master Dario Argento's terrifying story of a young American ballet student (Jessica Harper) who joins a European Ballet school only to discover that the staff is filled with witches bent on destruction and chaos. Chilling Goblin score.
Cast: Jessica Harper, Joan Bennett, Udo Kier, Stefania Casini, Alida Valli
Director: Dario Argento
Great cast, stylish claptrap presented well. Joan Bennett's last film, alas.

Friday, Febuary 25
6:00 am
RIDERS OF THE PURPLE SAGE (1941)
A thrilling adaptation of Zane Grey's classic Western novel of cheated inheritances, crooked judges and a lawman (Montgomery) determined to tame the West.
Cast: George Montgomery, Lynne Roberts, Robert Barrat, Mary Howard
Director: James Tinling
Some of the Fox B movies from this period were pretty good. Maybe this is one? Anyone know?

7:00 am
THE RAID (1954)
True story of a group of Confederates who enter Vermont from the Canada and plan to destroy a town to create a diversion to ease Union pressure on the Southern armies. Leader (Van Heflin) is drawn to an attractive window (Anne Bancroft) in the town.
Cast: Lee Marvin, Van Heflin, Richard Boone, Anne Bancroft, Tommy Rettig, Peter Graves
Director: Hugo Fregonese
Interesting premise, based on fact Civil War story, with SSO faves Lee Marvin and Richard Boone in prominent roles. More about this film here, if you're interested.

8:30 am
THE STREET WITH NO NAME (1948)
A gritty FBI crime drama about an agent (Stevens) sent undercover to expose the dealings of a crafty mobster (Widmark) who outwits the feds at every turn.
Cast: Lloyd Nolan, Richard Widmark, Mark Stevens, Ed Begley, Barbara Lawrence
Director: William Keighley
Widmark and his nasal inflammation almost steal this film noir, which seems to echo Louis de Rochemont's The House on 92nd Street, though the tense, well-staged finish makes up for some blandness in the script and characterizations.

2:00 pm
BROKEN LANCE (1954)
An overbearing father (Tracy) pits his sons (Wagner, O'Brien, Widmark) against each other over the inheritance of a cattle ranch.
Cast: Spencer Tracy, Richard Widmark, Jean Peters, Robert Wagner, Katy Jurado, Earl Holliman, Carl Benton Reid
Director: Edward Dmytryk
Good, solid remake of House of Strangers--with excellent work from Katy Jurado, in particular.And yeah, you get to see Spencer Tracy on a horse in a movie that is a wee bit closer to being a western than The Sea of Grass, but not as gritty as a modern western like Bad Day at Black Rock. Now, if only FMC would show House of Strangers again.
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Re: Classics Around The Dial

Postby klondike » February 21st, 2011, 3:12 pm

moirafinnie wrote:THE STREET WITH NO NAME (1948)
A gritty FBI crime drama about an agent (Stevens) sent undercover to expose the dealings of a crafty mobster (Widmark) who outwits the feds at every turn.
Cast: Lloyd Nolan, Richard Widmark, Mark Stevens, Ed Begley, Barbara Lawrence
Director: William Keighley
Widmark and his nasal inflammation almost steal this film noir, which seems to echo Louis de Rochemont's The House on 92nd Street, though the tense, well-staged finish makes up for some blandness in the script and characterizations.


. . . . and it's also got John McIntire, in a medium-meaty supporting role, where he even gets to . . but, that would be telling, wouldn't it . . ?

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Re: Classics Around The Dial

Postby moira finnie » February 21st, 2011, 3:25 pm

I almost mentioned that incident with John McIntire. I really like him in this noir and The Asphalt Jungle (1950). I thought that Mark Stevens' character was too undeveloped in Street With No Name, though that was part of his character's persona, I suppose, but he was quite appealing in The Dark Corner.
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Re: Classics Around The Dial

Postby mrsl » February 21st, 2011, 4:35 pm

.
I've seen all but 4 of the movies Moira listed and as usual she has given you some fine choices to watch. One, however, People Will Talk, is one of my 10 favorite movies. This is one of the movies I've seen countless times and will see again and again. For light comedy, even during what could be a serious career ending conference, this is a pleasure you will be happy you watched.
.
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Re: Classics Around The Dial

Postby moira finnie » February 21st, 2011, 4:58 pm

Isn't it funny how People Will Talk (1951) is rarely mentioned as a not-to-be-missed Cary Grant movie? I think that might be because it is more of an ensemble piece, allowing Grant to interact with other characters much more than usual. Maybe it's also hard to categorize as a comedy or a drama, but that's one of the things I like about it. Mankiewicz was supposed to have made the film as a critique of the kind of intolerance that was taking place in Hollywood at the time of McCarthyism. Perhaps that was too ambitious for this vehicle, though it has some charm. I like Jeanne Crain very much, though I'm not sure that she is at her best here (Apartment for Peggy and Margie are probably my favorite roles for her). Crain and Mankiewicz were not simpatico, according to the director's biographer, Kenneth Geist. He thought she was too bland, though she was fine in A Letter to Three Wives under his direction.
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Re: Classics Around The Dial

Postby mrsl » February 22nd, 2011, 1:44 am

.
I cannot imagine what Mankiewicz expected in Jeanne Crain being cast for this movie. To my mind she was the perfect choice considering what she had previously done. Consider her going from cute and perky Peggy and Margie, to the quiet and sedate socialite wife in Letter . . . then becoming Pinky. She showed right there what a wide range she had as an actress.

In reading some of these biographies, I wonder if the person being questioned had a clear memory of who he or she was talking about. It makes me wonder just how accurate a biography really is. Perhaps he felt an actor should live for his or her career while in her case . . . married to the same man for 58 years and raising 7 kids taking occasional sabbaticals to tend to the children's interests and needs, she didn't quite fill the bill?

.
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Re: Classics Around The Dial

Postby Rita Hayworth » February 22nd, 2011, 3:00 am

Friday, Febuary 25
6:00 am
RIDERS OF THE PURPLE SAGE (1941)
A thrilling adaptation of Zane Grey's classic Western novel of cheated inheritances, crooked judges and a lawman (Montgomery) determined to tame the West.
Cast: George Montgomery, Lynne Roberts, Robert Barrat, Mary Howard
Director: James Tinling
Some of the Fox B movies from this period were pretty good. Maybe this is one? Anyone know?

Thanks for sharing this - I always wanted to see this movie.

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Re: Classics Around The Dial

Postby MissGoddess » February 22nd, 2011, 10:39 am

kingme wrote:Friday, Febuary 25
6:00 am
RIDERS OF THE PURPLE SAGE (1941)
A thrilling adaptation of Zane Grey's classic Western novel of cheated inheritances, crooked judges and a lawman (Montgomery) determined to tame the West.
Cast: George Montgomery, Lynne Roberts, Robert Barrat, Mary Howard
Director: James Tinling
Some of the Fox B movies from this period were pretty good. Maybe this is one? Anyone know?

Thanks for sharing this - I always wanted to see this movie.


I am a fan of Zane Grey's novels, especially this one, and I seem to remember being really disappointed in this adaptation. I could be confusing it with another version, I've seen a couple, but none of them were as good as the book in my opinion. Still, it may be entertaining. I'm not a fan of George Montgomery.
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Re: Classics Around The Dial

Postby movieman1957 » February 22nd, 2011, 11:00 am

I've never read the book (I should fix that) but Ed Harriss did a version for TNT back in the early 90s I thought was pretty good. I can't remember the last time it was on but hopefully....
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Re: Classics Around The Dial

Postby MissGoddess » February 22nd, 2011, 11:24 am

movieman1957 wrote:I've never read the book (I should fix that) but Ed Harriss did a version for TNT back in the early 90s I thought was pretty good. I can't remember the last time it was on but hopefully....


I do like Ed Harris. He has a good cowboy look. I think I saw that version, too and was so disappointed it didn't match my idea of the book, but I was just a kid. Grey's books are very almost comic-book in their character delineations (and unfortunate racial delineations) but he was an absolute genius at describing the power and beauty of the old west landscape, the animals and the feelings these things inspire in man.

I'd like to see Harris' version again one day, if in fact it's the one I remember.
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Re: Classics Around The Dial

Postby knitwit45 » March 6th, 2011, 10:32 am

Heads up, youse guys...Moe is making an appearance tomorrow, March 8, 9AM CST, Fox Movie Channel (FMC)
Pickup on South Street

Anybody need a silk tie??? :shock: :shock:

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Re: Classics Around The Dial

Postby moira finnie » March 6th, 2011, 2:44 pm

knitwit45 wrote:Heads up, youse guys...Moe is making an appearance tomorrow, March 8, 9AM CST, Fox Movie Channel (FMC)
Pickup on South Street

Anybody need a silk tie??? :shock: :shock:

Watch those guys who stand a little too close to you on the subway too.
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Re: Classics Around The Dial

Postby Mr. Arkadin » March 6th, 2011, 3:03 pm

Some other rare showings on FMC this week:


SHOCK TREATMENT (1964)
An out of work actor (Stuart Whitman) endures the experience of a state mental asylum to search for a murderer's (Roddy McDowall) supposed million dollar stash.

Cast: Roddy Mcdowall, Stuart Whitman, Lauren Bacall, Carol Lynley, Jerry Goldsmith

CALL NORTHSIDE 777 (1948)
A tense drama based on the true story of a journalist's (Stewart) determined fight to clear a man (Conte) falsely convicted of murdering a policeman.

Cast: James Stewart, Richard Conte, Helen Walker, Betty Garde, Lee j. Cobb

Director: Henry Hathaway


FOREVER AMBER (1947)
Kathleen Windsor's romantic historical novel about the lusty, rebellious Amber (Darnell) is brought to the screen.

Cast: George Sanders, Linda Darnell, Cornel Wilde, Jessica Tandy, Richard Greene, David Raksin

Director: Otto Preminger

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Re: Classics Around The Dial

Postby Mr. Arkadin » May 9th, 2011, 5:58 pm

Some interesting films from the Fox Movie Channel this week:

THE VAULT OF HORROR (1973)

This 70s campy anthology, adapted from E.C. Comics tell tales of ghouls, vampires, and voodoo! Follow up to "Tales from the Crypt".

Cast: Terry-thomas, Curt Jurgens, Glynis Johns, Daniel Massey, Denholm Elliott, Anna Massey

Director: Roy Baker

THE STAR CHAMBER (1983)

A judge (Michael Douglas) frustrated by having to allow criminals to go free due to technicalities, joins a secret society of judicial vigilantes.

Cast: Michael Douglas, Hal Holbrook, Yaphet Kotto, Sharon Gless, James Sikking

Director: Peter Hyams

HEAVEN CAN WAIT (1943)

A sophisticated Casanova (Don Ameche) relates stories to the Devil (Laird Cregar), in hopes of getting a membership to hell.

Cast: Don Ameche, Gene Tierney, Eugene Pallette, Laird Cregar, Charles Coburn, Signe Hasso, Louis Calhern

Director: Ernst Lubitsch

LIFE IN THE BALANCE (1955)

A serial killer plagues the streets of Mexico City while the son of a wrongly accused musician seeks to clear his father�s name.

Cast: Rodolfo Acosta, Ricardo Montalban, Anne Bancroft, Lee Marvin, Jose Perez
Director: Harry Horner

ALASKA PASSAGE (1958)

Dramatic action story of the lifestyle and challenges of the Alaskan truckers in the late 50s as they battle extreme weather, business demands and greed.

Cast: Bill Williams, Nora Hayden, Lyn Thomas, Leslie Bradley, Nick Dennis

Director: Edward Bernds

GARDEN OF EVIL (1954)

Three men in search of easy riches find themselves embroiled in a web of infidelity, deceit and jealousy as they search for gold in the "Garden of Evil."

Cast: Gary Cooper, Susan Hayward, Richard Widmark, Cameron Mitchell, Rita Moreno

Director: Henry Hathaway

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Re: Classics Around The Dial

Postby moira finnie » May 9th, 2011, 6:10 pm

Mr. Arkadin wrote:LIFE IN THE BALANCE (1955)

A serial killer plagues the streets of Mexico City while the son of a wrongly accused musician seeks to clear his father�s name.

Cast: Rodolfo Acosta, Ricardo Montalban, Anne Bancroft, Lee Marvin, Jose Perez
Director: Harry Horner

ALASKA PASSAGE (1958)

Dramatic action story of the lifestyle and challenges of the Alaskan truckers in the late 50s as they battle extreme weather, business demands and greed.

Cast: Bill Williams, Nora Hayden, Lyn Thomas, Leslie Bradley, Nick Dennis

Director: Edward Bernds


Thanks for the reminder, Ark. I never seem to have seen either of these in their entirety. A Life in the Balance seems to be as potentially as interesting as Montalban's performances in Mann's Mystery Street and Wellman's My Man and I, though my expectations may be too high. Alaska Passage seemed to have some laughable, tawdry appeal when some bimbo was putting the moves on Bill Williams in the one scene I've seen in the past. Maybe there's more to it that I'll enjoy. After all, the same man who made High School Hellcats and The Queen of Outer Space is behind the camera! :wink:
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