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What Was The Last Movie You Watched?

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16,761
Location
New York City
^^^Nothing like a good hit-gone-wrong-and-a-million-bucks-lying-around doover flick^^^

Angie's rather pneumatic quality shown maximum advantage adds sugar to the spice.
But everything ain't nice. And a good tracker doover, but the odd-couple pairing Clue and Lee,
seems a real stretch. Gotta check it out. A never seen caper. Nothing like a good strictly pro hit job.

I was surprised I had never seen it before either - or even knew about it. It's quirky and won't work for everyone, but I really enjoyed it. Love to hear your thoughts if you do see it.
 

Worf

I'll Lock Up
Messages
5,173
Location
Troy, New York, USA
I looked this up, it has surprisingly good reviews, but I think I will give it a hard pass!
Well, if you're intrigued and have an hour and a half of life to risk... by all means go at it. Maybe I missed something, mayhaps I was in a sour mood while watching it. Who knows. But believe me, though I love cinema, I'm not Lizzie Maine nor Fading Fast... my word ain't gospel. o_O

Worf
 

Julian Shellhammer

Practically Family
Messages
851
The Absent-Minded Professor (1961) with Fred MacMurray and a boatload of familiar faces, because the grandkids were over.

Did I already post about Keep Your Powder Dry (1945), with Lana Turner, Laraine Day, and Susan Peters? If I did, please excuse the oversight. Good wartime service comedy about three enlistees in the WACs. Snappy chatter and peek at how light hearted military duty can be.
 
Messages
16,761
Location
New York City
forsakingallothers1934.75435.jpg
Forsaking All Others from 1934 with Joan Crawford, Robert Montgomery and Clark Gable

Forsaking All Others starts out as a harsh look at a woman publicly and painfully jilted at the altar. And while it maintains its focus and energy initially, it, unfortunately, loses both in the last third.

As the movie opens, we see childhood sweethearts Joan Crawford and Robert Montgomery seemingly ecstatic to be getting married. Also in town for the wedding is the couple's mutual childhood friend, Clark Gable, who is carrying a covert torch for Ms. Crawford.

But the fly in the ointment for this one is Montgomery's ex-girlfriend Frances Drake (I know, even as a stage name, it's a bit of an odd nod to history). Despite being an obvious and manipulative witch-with-a-B, she convinces Montgomery to jilt Crawford and elope with her the night before the planned marriage - ouch.

And while, as was oddly common in Depression-era movies, this is a tale of rich people doing stupid rich-people things, Crawford's pain and humiliation are real. After recuperating from the shock in a very nice cabin in the woods, where Gable comes by to comfort her as a friend, Crawford returns to society and quickly begins having an affair with, now, unhappily married Montgomery.

Here's where the movie, which up till this point is a reasonably poignant and real-to-life tale of a woman left at the alter, gets goofy as we see her and Montgomery "escape" from the city only to have a prank-and-pitfall-filled day in the country resulting in them staying over night, but obviously not having sex (thank you silly Motion Picture Production Code for that nonsense).

After that, we jump forward (I'm guessing) about a year where, once again, Crawford and now-divorced Montgomery are to be married the next day. However, (spoiler alert) this time, at the last moment, Crawford sees that reliable-and-decent Gable and not the nice-but-frivolous Montgomery would make the better husband. Hence, she now returns the jilt of a year ago and leaves Montgomery all but at the altar as she, literally, sails away with Gable.

It's not a bad movie, but the restrictions of the Production Code and a rushed last third addled the effort. Had it been made a year earlier in the pre-code era, instead of a screwball day in the country of not having sex, Crawford and Montgomery, cheating on his wife, would have been shacked up somewhere while the wife stewed. Not nice, but life is often not nice.

Also, instead of a bemused, but cheerful Montgomery waiving Crawford and Gable goodbye at the end, pre-code Montgomery would have been more solemn and reflective about the mess that he's made of his life and relationships. The three leads have enough talent to hold this wobbly toward the end effort together, but one can see the better pre-code movie suffocating inside this code-approved one.


N.B. There is some very real and rapid dialogue early on as Crawford, Montgomery and Gable discuss the fallout from Crawford's jilting. It is refreshingly frank and visceral, but unfortunately, that quality of writing all but disappears by the last third of the movie. Separately, if you do watch it, look for the roadside hamburger shack scene - great time travel to a place you'd love to visit (I tried, but couldn't find a pic of it anywhere).
 

Harp

I'll Lock Up
Messages
8,508
Location
Chicago, IL US
^^^
A. See this flick
B. Roadside hamburger shack scene
C. Post code reminder: No shackin seen scene, just cheeseburgers
D. Get fries with the shakes served at the no shack seen scene?;)

P.S. Trapsed around the Net and found a very lovely Ann Savage photo, and later a realty story
about Margaret Hamilton's Sunset Strip house selling for $2.4M; another property of hers at Gramercy Park
in The Big Apple sold earlier. The lady definitely knew property value, but I could not help thinking of
Ms Savage as the Wicked Witch of OZ. Just gorgeous but her presence would have undoubtedly cast
the film itself in another light entirely.
 

Julian Shellhammer

Practically Family
Messages
851
55 Days at Peking (1963) with Charlton Heston, Ava Gardner, and David Niven top-billed. The action scenes are epic. I don't know how much history they left in the story. For me, the tempo drags when there is chatting and flirting. Nonetheless, it provided a couple evenings' pastimes.
 

Haversack

One Too Many
Messages
1,193
Location
Clipperton Island
The wife wanted something light and fun so I pulled out the Lubitsch musical set and she selected The Smiling Lieutenant, (1931). Chevalier, Colbert, and Hopkins form a royal to working class triangle with Chevalier as the hypotenuse in imperial Vienna. (The actor playing Franz-Josef wasn't tall enough however). Pre-code of course so Lubitsch put the dialogue over all the jumps. A smile means you like someone. A wink means you want to do something about it. An implication that all sides were in play with each other comes towards the end when working class Colbert tells Chevalier that his royal wife really is a blonde. Fun, adult without being raunchy, and a piano duet where Colbert tells Hopkins to "Jazz Up Your Lingerie".
 

Harp

I'll Lock Up
Messages
8,508
Location
Chicago, IL US
The wife wanted something light and fun so I pulled out the Lubitsch musical set and she selected The Smiling Lieutenant, (1931). Chevalier, Colbert, and Hopkins form a royal to working class triangle with Chevalier as the hypotenuse in imperial Vienna. (The actor playing Franz-Josef wasn't tall enough however). Pre-code of course so Lubitsch put the dialogue over all the jumps. A smile means you like someone. A wink means you want to do something about it. An implication that all sides were in play with each other comes towards the end when working class Colbert tells Chevalier that his royal wife really is a blonde. Fun, adult without being raunchy, and a piano duet where Colbert tells Hopkins to "Jazz Up Your Lingerie".

Triangle with unequal catheti, and not an isosceles affair; seems a right angle dangle proportionate to the
heat of the extramarital tangle, but isle of Lesbos linear measure circularity renders sums squared and even.
;)
 
Messages
16,761
Location
New York City
m2mmatgmrv.jpg
Murder at the Gallop from 1963 with Margaret Rutherford, Charles Tingwell and Stringer Davis

There were four Agatha Christie Miss Marple movies made in the early sixties; based on the two I've seen, they are fun-enough efforts if thought of as good B-movies or TV-shows that happened to be made in a movie format.

The general story seems to be the same in the two I've seen so far. Miss Marple, a grandmotherly looking woman who lives in a small English village, stumbles upon a murder and doubts that the police are conducting a thorough-enough investigation. So, she pursues her own inquiry getting underfoot of the police inspector, Charles Tingwell, who likes Miss Marple, but is often irritated by her, to be honest, constantly upstaging him.

It's all lighthearted stuff as the fun is seeing a scripted-out-of-central-casting grandmother - as a somewhat antecedent of the Columbo-TV model - seemingly harmlessly following clues and asking questions as she's all but dismissed by everyone until, right at the end, they realize that grandma has figured it all out.

In Murder at the Gallop, the story is set amongst the horsey set as a patriarch of a wealthy family is murdered with all his relatives, and a few other people, suspects. To tell more isn't so much to risk giving anything away, but wasting effort as you've seen some version of the plot fifty or more times if you've watched any TV-detective-mystery dramas from the sixties through the nineties. Here, eventually, usually after an attempt is made on Miss Marple's life by the murderer, she, in her understated and almost clumsy manner, gathers everyone together in one room and exposes the guilty person.

In these films, there's a delicate balance between tongue-in-cheek whimsy and mystery story that leans toward the former but nods enough at the latter to hold the two ends together. But you don't watch a Miss Marple film for the story, you watch it because you enjoy the eccentric Miss Marple - it either works for you or it doesn't. I can only enjoy them with plenty of time between each one.

But if their quirkiness does appeal to you, the chemistry between the frustrated young police inspector and septuagenarian Miss Marple is movie gold. Not since Marie Dressler in the 1930s has there been an elderly female star who could carry a movie with such presence and personality. Plus, for us today, the time travel these movies provide to a small village in early '60s England is pure fun.
 

Worf

I'll Lock Up
Messages
5,173
Location
Troy, New York, USA
"Sputnik" - In 1982 a couple of Russian Cosmonauts are about to return home after several months in space. Communist Russia iirc in 1982 was in its death throes so I don't know how viable it's space program was at the time or what two guys in a cramped Soyuz craft were supposed to be doing up there. Needless to say things go sideways when their return capsule is slammed by something. Things go from bad to worse when they hear footsteps outside the capsule. Somehow, something gets into the capsule and hitches a ride back to earth without it burning up on reentry. Cut to a clinical psychologist being grilled by some mid-level Party Stooges because she had the temerity to do something effective to save the life and sanity of a patient.

After refusing to apologize and facing prison she's approached by a Colonel in some secret Soviet agency and given a choice of facing the music there or helping him find out why one of the recently returned astronauts can't remember what happened to him, his compatriot and what killed him. From here it's better than average Sci Fi fare where she uses her unorthodox methods to decipher the mystery. Decent special effects, great acting and good enough for me to not mind the subtitles. Worth a watch for all monster flic and Sci Fi lovers.

Worf
 

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