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  • Went the Day Well? (1942) on TPTV. A good tale, well told.
    A fairly important role for David Farrar playing a bad lad against his usual type.

    Steve

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    • Alf's Button Afloat (1938). A typical semi-coherent knockabout comedy co-written by Val Guest and starring The Crazy Gang. An adaptation of Alf's Button, in this one Bud Flanagan is Alf and the antediluvian genie is Alastair Sim. Bud and co. find themselves in the marines for much of the film where their antics tend to centre on usual nemesis Wally Patch and to try and get James Carney hitched with Glennis Lorimer. The usual silly banter features a few risque lines, but there are no songs, although in a chase sequence, Charles Williams incorporates part of his Devil's Galop into the score. A downbeat ending for the lovers too!

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      • Wings Over Africa (1936). In flashback, Carol Reed (sic) tells how she came into posession of diamonds in Africa. Melodrama in the jungle follows and the end of the film doesn't tie in with the beginning. And it's a print with sellotape down the middle!
        Dodging the locals, stock footage and sellotape are Joan Gardner as Carol, a young Ian Colin as the male romantic lead and Alan Napier as a doctor. It's possible this film is the source of Jack Beaver's music heard in Tod Slaughter epics.

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        • I Met a Murderer (1939). James Mason is Mark Warrow, a farmer on the run after he murders his lazy, nagging, dog-killing wife. He teams up with caravaner Jo, but she has ulterior motives for aiding him. And of course, the police are (eventually) on Mark's trail . . .
          Almost a home movie made on location by Mason and Pamela and Roy Kellino, the man on the run seems relatively laid back as he does so and apart from the beginning of a scene when he first meets Jo, there's wall-to-wall music and the sparse dialogue is post-synched. A remarkably young Sylvia Coleridge plays Martha the doomed wife and there's also a role for the elfin Esma Cannon. Jo is played by Pamela Kellino, soon to become Mrs. Mason the first.

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          • Where's That Fire? (1939). Nincompoop Bishop's Wallop firemen Benjamin Viking, Jerry and Albert fail to put out any fires, but by mistake have a go at foiling crooks who are out to steal the Crown Jewels.
            The last of the Will Hay, Moore Marriott and Graham Moffatt comedies is admittedly a step down from their heyday, it's basically a re-run of Ask of Policeman, but it's still got a lot to commend it, not least the long sequence of the erection of the firemens' pole with resultant havoc and Will thinking he's insulted when he's told by a Tower of London guard that he's a bastion. Charles Hawtrey is an annoying swot schoolboy, Peter Gawthorne sadly not used a lot as a fire chief and Hugh McDermott thankfully not used a lot as a gang member. Directed as usual by Marcel Varnel.

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            • Meet Mr. Malcolm (1954)

              Mystery writer Colin Knowles, is asked by his estranged wife Louie, to investigate the disappearance of her employer, from his Sussex estate.
              A very minor movie indeed, that would be hard pressed to reach the heights of B movie status.
              Despite the engaging performances from its' leads, Richard Gale and Sarah Lawson, it remains a pedestrian affair, with an easily identifiable villain.
              Duncan Lamont is the Scotland Yard Superintendent, bought in ton investigate alongside a local Sergeant, (Played with a Devon accent by Nigel Green). Who then promptly leaves the investigation to the amateurs.
              With Adrienne Allen and Meredith Edwards.

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              • Where There's a Will (1936). A bit of a break as we have Will Hay as an incompetent solicitor instead of an incompetent schoolmaster, but he still is as underhand as usual and falls foul of American hoodlums (no testamentary writing involved!). Quite a lot of laughs can be had and Will's ably supported by H. F. Maltby, Gibb McLaughlin and Norma Varden as well as, for the first time, Graham Moffatt as his lazy and cheeky office boy, albeit not named Albert yet.
                The technical crew include "one shot" William Beaudine as director and co-writer (along with Hay), photography by Charles Van Enger, both from the States, and editing by T. R. Fisher, aka Terence Fisher. The uncredited third assistant director is Roy Ward Baker.

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                • Strictly for the Birds (1963). A "lucky" day in the life of aimless and irresponsible loafer Terry Blessing after he gets one in the eye from a pigeon. It's an eventual day with downs as well as ups, with the biggest down at the end . . .
                  No laughs in this lazy comedy starring Tony Tanner who overplays Terry considerably and you don't really care what happens to him, but Graham Stark and especially Joan Sims as his friend and his sister put in more assured performances. Directed by Vernon Sewell and written by Tony Hawes, who also appears briefly as musician Joe. I met Tony in the 1980s when he was married to Lois Laurel, Stan's daughter, but this film is strictly for the insomniacs.

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                  • Ticket to Paradise (1960). Brief romantic comedy with the slightest of plot, part of which is never resolved, with travel agent Jack Watson (sic) sent to Italy all expenses paid to check out issues for his boss and there quickly falls for lonely Mary Rillston. They both exaggerate their standing in life and the expected misunderstandings arise, but of course all works out at the end. Directed by Francis Searle on what looks like some of the sets from THE ADVENTURERS OF ROBIN HOOD, with a liberal use of library footage, Emrys Jones at 44 is too old to play the eager and naive travel agent and Patricia Dainton as Mary has really nothing worthwhile to do, but Denis Shaw shines for once as a benevolent and matchmaking taxi driver. Glamour from vampish Vanda Hudson, Claire Gordon and Maureen Davis.

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                    • I watched An Inspector Calls (1954) with Alastair Sim giving his usual great performance in this film based on the J.B. Priestly play.
                      It was preceeded by the always great Night Mail (1936) both on Talking Pictures TV the other day.

                      Steve

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                      • BBC4 is re-showing a newer version of An Inspector Calls this coming Friday.

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                        • Originally posted by Nick Dando View Post
                          BBC4 is re-showing a newer version of An Inspector Calls this coming Friday.
                          If it’s the 2015 version with David Thewlis, I thought it was excellent

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                          • Nick Dando
                            Nick Dando commented
                            Editing a comment
                            It is and it is.

                        • Snowball (1960). A schoolboy tells his parents that he had to walk home as he was refused carriage by bus by the conductor. A busybody neighbour writes to the local rag about it and things, well, snowball causing disruption to life, disharmony between his parents, loss of employment and ultimately tragedy.
                          A fairly believable yarn which turns into melodrama by its last act has Dennis Waterman as the boy, an authoritarian Gordon Jackson and Zena Walker as his parents, Myrtle Reed as the neighbour and a non-twitchy Kenneth Griffith as the bus conductor who may or may not have done the deed. John Welsh, Wensley Pithey, Eric Pohlmann, Roddy McMillan and Daphne Anderson bang some of the other roles. Nice all-strings score by Clifton Parker.
                          Last edited by Gerald Lovell; 16 August 2021, 07:03 PM.

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                          • 84 Charing Cross Road (1987)

                            The correspondence from 1949 to 1968 of the American writer Helene Hanff and the British antiquarian bookshop manager Frank Doel.
                            A warm gentle tale of friendship across the pond, made more poignant by the fact, that the two never got to meet.
                            Anne Bancroft is pitch perfect, as the vodka swilling, fag smoking Hanff, whilst Hopkins nicely underplays as Frank Doel.
                            With Maurice Denham, Judi Dench and Eleanor David.

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                            • As is my wont, I watched “Richard Herring’s Leicester Square Theatre Podcast” on Youtube, mainly because the guest was the astonishingly youthful looking Robin Askwith. Definitely worth a watch for anybody who was young (or old) around the time of the Confessions films. He’s an articulate and witty speaker, and Herring is not the sneery 90s comic some might expect, so the Confessions films get seriously (and humorously) discussed, alongside good showbiz anecdotes about legends from Linda Bellingham to Lindsay Andersen, from Harrison Ford to Rula Lenska. All round a good way to spend an hour - also available as a podcast if you want to go out running or something (!)
                              It also made me watch Confessions of a Window Cleaner (1974) in a clean copy on YouTube. It’s not dreadful exploitative rubbish, perhaps, but it’s not really a good film either. Sort of Carry On with the sex turned up and the funny dialogue turned down, but what a cast of classic British talent - in all senses of the word.

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