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Watched Last Night

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  • I thought A Countess from Hong Kong (1967) painfully overlong. I can only conclude that Chaplin was lame and couldn't get out of his director's chair— because the verbose actors played to the front of the 'stage' and the camera never moved. And I'm guessing he was troubled with failing eyesight— because the vast studio set was lit like an hospital operating theatre.

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    • We did a comedy double last night

      First was Breakout (1975) Charles Bronson,Robert Duvall and the gorgeous Jill Ireland.Based on a true story of a breakout/rescue from a Mexican Prison in 1971.
      The film starts with a feel somewhat like a spaghetti western but once you get approx 20 mins into the film - it is quite entertaining with Bronson playing the rescue pilot,possibly especially to those with an aviation interest - the rescue helicopter used is a Sud Aviation Alouette

      Second was the (unintentionally) funny Mutiny on the Bounty (1962) This film was beautifully shot and the version we watched had excellent picture quality,I only described it as unintentionally funny because of using Brando to play Mr Christian - his accent was excruciating and of course he did not really look like a british officer type and we found this distracting from an otherwise excellent film.
      The Lord only knows why they bothered to rewrite the ending - perhaps they thought it was a more noble ending for Brando than the reality of what actually happened !

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      • The Sea Shall Not Have Them (1954). It's 1944 and Anthony Steel 's back once more and again has relatively little to do as co-writer and director Lewis Gilbert concentrates on this being an ensemble character piece with Michael Redgrave and his briefcase stuffed full of MacGuffin Papers, Dirk Bogarde, Bonor Colleano and Jack Watling stuck in a dinghy, Tony and his crew including Nigel Patrick, Sydney Tafler (of course!), Victor Maddern and James Kenney on the rescue launch, Griffith Jones and his officers and the ladies back at base and Paul Carpenter, Eddie "Jelly" Byrne and Anton Diffring on a Sea Otter. It's reasonably stiff upper lip stuff even though the trials and tribulations on the launch are piled on thickly. Rachel Kempson appears in one scene as Redgrave's missus using the same strained voice daughter Vanessa would adopt in Behind the Mask (1958), Joan Sims has a brief dramatic role and fey little Ian Whittaker gets a decent part as the green medical orderly.
        Allegedly, when Noel Coward spotted a cinema poster advertising this film starring Redgrave and Bogarde he remarked, "I don't see why not. Everyone else has".

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        • Women of Twilight (1952). Freda Jackson's boarding house for young, ahem, ladies, is unlikely to get even a one-star rating, though maybe a !!!!! rating, while the film itself got an "X". She's collected a marvellous group of single mother slappers including Vida Hope, Joan Dowling, Dora Bryan and Ingeborg Wells and also nice girl Lois Maxwell as well as Rene Ray whose story is the central heart of this melodrama. Laurence Harvey gets a couple of scenes as Rene's doomed lover who's a nightclub singer () and there's some super cat-calling and fighting scenes. Freda steals all hers though, as she becomes more and more wicked as the film goes along.

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          • The Reckoning (2002)

            This one is a bit like Hour of the Pig, set in the 14th century and complete with decadent aristos, muttering, muddy peasants, and missing boys. It's well done and entertaining but ends on a bit of a damp squib, as disgraced priest, Paul Bethany, uncovers a sinister mystery and comes unstuck. Well cast with Gina McKee, Brian Cox, Willhem Dafoe and Tom Hardy amongst the grubby working classes and Vincent Cassell and Matthew MacFadyen representing the blue bloods

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            • Originally posted by BVS View Post

              Second was the (unintentionally) funny Mutiny on the Bounty (1962) This film was beautifully shot and the version we watched had excellent picture quality,I only described it as unintentionally funny because of using Brando to play Mr Christian - his accent was excruciating and of course he did not really look like a british officer type and we found this distracting from an otherwise excellent film.
              The Lord only knows why they bothered to rewrite the ending - perhaps they thought it was a more noble ending for Brando than the reality of what actually happened !
              Just watched The Island of Dr Moreau with the bloated, mumbling and clear distracted Brando drifting in and out as Moreau and, much to my surprise, reusing the Fletcher Christian accent! It was the highlight in an otherwise messy, awkward movie

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              • Originally posted by John Hamilton View Post

                Just watched The Island of Dr Moreau with the bloated, mumbling and clear distracted Brando drifting in and out as Moreau and, much to my surprise, reusing the Fletcher Christian accent! It was the highlight in an otherwise messy, awkward movie
                I must admit I have never been a Brando fan but it was only his accent which we thought distracted from the Mr Christian role - he actually moved around the Ship very well/naturally.

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                • The Happiness of Three Women (1954). Troubled folk gather at a Welsh inn and get a kind of Halfway House treatment from the wishing well out the back or rather, from the wiles of crafty Parry the Post. Welsh whimsy in this comedy/drama starring, co-written and based upon the play by Eynon Evans with Brenda de Banzie the innkeeper, Donald Houston and Petula Clark the betrothed, Patricia Burke the bereaved, Patricia Cutts and Bill O'Connor the bickering and Gladys Hay the bossy-boots. While the various peoples' issues are all resolved too unbelievably/conveniently and the stage origins remain evident, veteran director Maurice Elvey keeps things moving and it's interesting to see Donald's brother Glyn interact with him, albeit briefly.

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                  • Cosh Boy (1952). Lewis Gilbert again, once more using James Kenney and Ian Whittaker, and garnering one of the first "X" certificates. James is the title character leading Ian, Johnny Briggs and co. into more and more serious crime, with Joan Collins playing his love interest, Hermione Baddeley Joan's mother and Hermione Gingold an elderly lady of easy virtue. Betty Ann Davies plays James' mum, and if his crimes weren't enough, she goes and marries Robert Ayres!
                    There's a pompous written prologue explaining the "post-war tragedy - the juvenile delinquent" and Mr. Ayres' ultimate remedy with the connivance of the police is quite remarkable.
                    Called The Slasher in the States, though that has different connotations here!

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                    • Originally posted by John Hamilton View Post
                      Never Say Never Again (1983)

                      ​​​​​​
                      I watched this for the first time since 1983 to see if the years had mellowed my opinion, and they haven't. It starts like a 1980s TV movie and though it picks up a bit, it never comes close to the earlier Bonds. The whole thing plays like a script that rejected for one of Moore's slapstick outings as the character. Great cast, all wasted in a substandard effort.


                      Tigon Man
                      #255.1

                      Tigon Man commented
                      18th June 2017, 09:23 AM
                      Editing a comment


                      Yes it's awful. Connery like Moore was far too old for Bond by this time. Sir Rog though had aged better, Connery was lined and paunchy.


                      Don't forget the wig!

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                      • Originally posted by zabadak View Post
                        Don't forget the wig!
                        I didn't think Connery was the problem here and I don't think he looked noticeably chubbier (god knows, the director never missed an opportunity to get him with his shirt off!). The script was poor, the direction lifeless and the music was just awful. Connery was definately too old for the part, or at least he looked too old, but his dialogue was really cringing and belonged on one of those ITC shows from the '70s (probably starring Rodger Moore!)

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                        • There were too many things they couldn't use (the theme, the gadgets etc.)...

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                          • Originally posted by zabadak View Post
                            There were too many things they couldn't use (the theme, the gadgets etc.)...
                            Agreed on the theme. There were so many moments just crying out for the Bond tune, and what we got was dreadful elevator music. Most of the other elements are there, such as they are, M, Moneypenny, Q and it has its fair share of gadgets.

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                            • Originally posted by John Hamilton View Post

                              Agreed on the theme. There were so many moments just crying out for the Bond tune, and what we got was dreadful elevator music. Most of the other elements are there, such as they are, M, Moneypenny, Q and it has its fair share of gadgets.
                              Absolutely about the music. Underwater scenes are difficult to score at the best of times as John Barry commented about his work on Thunderball, but on this, like the rest of the music, it was just atrocious.

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                              • Father Came Too! (1963). Really quite funny slapstick film with those expert purveyors of farce James Robertson Justice, Stanley Baxter, Leslie Phillips and Ronnie Barker and lively direction by Peter Graham Scott. A kind of Mr. Baxter Builds his Hell House or The Big, Big Money Pit, with Stanley and new wife Sally Smith trying to renovate their dream country cottage with little help from Ronnie and his fellow cowboy builders and interference from booming father-in-law JRJ. Much of the comedy is telegraphed, but the performances of the leads and the likes of Eric Barker, Julian Orchard, silent but deadly Raymond Huntley and others is what makes this one super fun.

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