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  • When Eight Bells Toll (1971). Anthony Hopkins as an action hero? Well, it's pretty slow stuff from Alistair MacLean in his adaptation of his own novel and dull location work around Mull and plodding direction from Etienne Perier don't help either. Robert Morley as the British Intelligence boss seems to have waddled in from another film entirely and there's little enthusiasm shown by Jack Hawkins (dubbed by Charles Gray), Corin Redgrave (dunked in the Atlantic), Maurice Roëves (shot in the fugilage) and Nathalie Delon (wrested from the deep). The film gives not much to do for Derek Bond or Ferdy Mayne and just nothing for poor old Peter Arne. Sunken gold bullion seems to be something to do with the plot, but it's difficult to say between the snoozes that envelope you as you try to watch the film. That the sound is slightly out of sync adds to the torpor.

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    • The Lady from the Sea (1929/30). A creaky silent converted to sound that shows how far back filmmaking stepped when trying to adapt to the new technology and there wasn't an imaginative director like Alfred Hitchcock behind the camera. Here it's Castleton Knight who has about four sets and melodramatic performances to cope with, though there are stormy location scenes too. The film is so old Ray Milland calls himself Raymond Milland and has his own hair and his brief spurts of dialogue bring out his Welsh accent at times. He's the lifeboatman who rescues vamp Mona Goya who then puts her wiles into action and he betrays his fiancée Eugenie Amami. Tragedy follows, but potboiler as it is, you know things will sentimentally resolve themselves. Moore Marriott plays Raymond's father, Anita Graham his mother and Bruce Gordon his level-headed brother. Bowls of flowers appear in most scenes - maybe the microphone was in them!

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      • Originally posted by Gerald Lovell View Post
        Bowls of flowers appear in most scenes - maybe the microphone was in them!
        You were probably joking, but actually that's where the microphones were placed until they invented the sound boom.

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        • Originally posted by agutterfan View Post

          You were probably joking, but actually that's where the microphones were placed until they invented the sound boom.
          I've seen Singin' in the Rain!

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          • All Coppers are (1971). The Sidney Hayers for Peter Rogers trilogy completes with this unremarkable drama with an open ending from Allan Prior which juxtaposes the day jobs of a London bobby (Martin Potter arresting a sneak thief/getting battered during a riot/helping an old lady find her dog) and a small time crook (Nicky Henson planning to steal a lorry load of cigarettes). The girl they both have a yen for is Julia Foster despite Martin being married and Nicky having other things on his mind. They all seem to live conveniently near to each other in Battersea and while the film is well made, many of the characterisations seem rather stereotypical and Eric Rogers' background music for Nicky is very like the theme for Sid James' gang in Carry On Matron. Ian Hendry gets a couple of dangerous and on edge scenes as the bigger time crook Nicky wants to flog the ciggies and a main title card all to himself.
            Last edited by Gerald Lovell; 15th June 2019, 04:29 PM.

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            • Ian Fryer
              Ian Fryer commented
              Editing a comment
              Ian Henry gives a very strange performance indeed in this one, all sweaty and wild-eyed. Martin Potter wasn't the most expressive of actors and a much better performance was needed to sell his two-timing copper as anything close to a sympathetic character.

              Julia Foster and Nicky Henson are much better, especially the latter as a cocksure but ultimately small-time and rather thick crook. It's actually quite fun to note him both casing and committing his big robbery in a massive, rusty old American car which must be the most conspicuous vehicle in London.

          • Children of Chance (1930). Elissa Landi plays both children as she's ordinary working girl Binnie with talent, as well as scheming model Lia de Marita with no talent. Confusion reigns when Binnie pretends to be Lia to get a theatrical audition, not knowing that Lia has stolen a necklace and done a runner. An early sound comedy, silly but quite witty at times, written by Frank Launder and Miles Malleson. As usual, IMDb also lists Miles in the uncredited cast list though he's nowhere to be seen in the film, but those who are include John Stuart, John Longden, Mabel Poulton and Gus McNaughton.

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            • Originally posted by Paxton Milk View Post
              Tinker, Tailor, Soldier...Spy (2011)

              ​​​​​​
              A masterful adaptation of Le Carre’s complex novel, built around a powerful (and Oscar-nominated) performance from Gary Oldman and an accomplished supporting cast including: Tom Hardy, Colin Firth, Benedict Cumberbatch and Mark Strong. I saw it in a hushed cinema (something of a rarity) when it first came out and it loses nothing of its power on the small screen.
              But boy does it have some goofs in it though.

              https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1340800...f_=tt_ql_trv_2



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              • Ian Fryer
                Ian Fryer commented
                Editing a comment
                Blimey, some of those are nit-picking!

            • Watched two classic TV episodes last night: The Avengers - The Rotters. This is from the Tara King season, at the point where the chaos that engulfed the production at its beginning had been overcome and the series was something like its old self. This one was written by Dave Freeman, who was better known as a comedy writer, and it's a little bit The Avengers by numbers. Towards the end of its original run there were a lot of plots involving a small group being bumped off one-by-one by one of their own number and this is yet another of those.

              Interestingly, this features Eric Barker the year after he suffered a stroke, leaving him partially paralysed on his left side. You can tell there's something not right about his delivery of lines, and it's possible he was reading his lines off boards, judging by his eyeline on longer dialogue passages. Still very nice to see him, though.

              Also watched Danger Man: Colony Three. I sometimes find the hour-long Danger Man episodes a bit of a slog, but this has a really clever idea, as Drake goes undercover in a fake English village being used to train communist spies. The parallels to The Prisoner are clear and this is much livelier than some episodes of the series. Catherine Woodville, who was at the time married to Patrick Macnee, is one of the guest stars.

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              • Originally posted by Metro1962 View Post

                But boy does it have some goofs in it though.

                https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1340800...f_=tt_ql_trv_2


                Yeah, I try not to let things like an anchronistic speedbump impact on suspension of disbelief. The film looked and felt authentic, thats good enough for me. I think maybe some people would be better off limiting their viewing habits to documentaries rather than works of fiction..

                Comment


                • Originally posted by Gerald Lovell View Post
                  All Coppers are (1971). The Sidney Hayers for Peter Rogers trilogy completes with this unremarkable drama with an open ending from Allan Prior which juxtaposes the day jobs of a London bobby (Martin Potter arresting a sneak thief/getting battered during a riot/helping an old lady find her dog) and a small time crook (Nicky Henson planning to steal a lorry load of cigarettes). The girl they both have a yen for is Julia Foster despite Martin being married and Nicky having other things on his mind. They all seem to live conveniently near to each other in Battersea and while the film is well made, many of the characterisations seem rather stereotypical and Eric Rogers' background music for Nicky is very like the theme for Sid James' gang in Carry On Matron. Ian Hendry gets a couple of dangerous and on edge scenes as the bigger time crook Nicky wants to flog the ciggies and a main title card all to himself.
                  Blimey, I'd forgotten about this one!

                  I saw it once, on a National Express bus, on my way to Uni in Wales. Was not impressed...

                  Comment


                  • Ian Fryer
                    Ian Fryer commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Could have been worse. The last film I saw on a National Express was the Adam Sandler remake of Mr Deeds - possibly the worst comedy I've ever seen.

                • Originally posted by zabadak View Post

                  Blimey, I'd forgotten about this one!

                  I saw it once, on a National Express bus, on my way to Uni in Wales. Was not impressed...
                  Count yourself lucky. I got a National Express all the way from Glasgow to London and the extra they provided was a window that leaked rain water on me most of the way.

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                  • Originally posted by Paxton Milk View Post

                    The film looked and felt authentic, thats good enough for me.
                    Except for when you see some people driving in a car with the most awful back projection applied.................it looked like it was a film from the old b/w days when this sort of thing happened......and this is from 2011 you would have thought they could have done a lot better than that sheesh

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                    • Originally posted by Metro1962 View Post

                      Except for when you see some people driving in a car with the most awful back projection applied.................it looked like it was a film from the old b/w days when this sort of thing happened......and this is from 2011 you would have thought they could have done a lot better than that sheesh
                      Didn’t notice...didn’t impact my enjoyment of a fine movie

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                      • Originally posted by Paxton Milk View Post

                        Count yourself lucky. I got a National Express all the way from Glasgow to London and the extra they provided was a window that leaked rain water on me most of the way.
                        I was on an overnight bus from Aberdeen to London and the relief driver was curled up on the seat behind me, his shoes off and his feet smelling of ripe gorgonzola.

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                        • Originally posted by Gerald Lovell View Post

                          I was on an overnight bus from Aberdeen to London and the relief driver was curled up on the seat behind me, his shoes off and his feet smelling of ripe gorgonzola.
                          Ah, the good old days!

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