Tuesday, 10 December 2019

71 ok.ru


Mr. Skitch (1933) - Baffling family camping comedy with Will Rogers.

Here Comes Trouble (1936 - b/w) - Another unfunny chase comedy around a ship from Fox.

Super Sleuth (1937- b/w) - Grating crime-comedy with Jack Oakie.

The House of Fear (1938 - b/w) - Grating Universal crimer.

Next Time I Marry (1938 - B/W) - Fast-paced but unentertaining vehicle for Lucille Ball.

The Man Behind the Mask (1936) - Generic quota quickie involving a masquerade party, by Michael Powell for New Realm.

Flash Gordon Conquers The Universe (1940) - Just a load of period drama outfits in a quarry.

The Crystal Ball (1943 - b/w) -  Generic romcom with  Ray Milland and Paulette Goddard.

Murder He Says (1945 - b/w) - Fred MacMurray lollops about with glowing hillbillies in a silly comedy.

Home Sweet Homicide (1946) - Generic kiddie-aimed suburban comedy with Randolph Scott and young Dean Stockwell that allegedly has a mystery.

The Corpse Came C.O.D. (1947)   - GENERIC CRIME-COMEDY with former Republican George Brent.

Black Narcissus (1947) - It look so beautiful that one forgets the other flaws. Jean Simmons seems to belong to that caste of Indians who only exist in the movies.

Champagne for Caesar (1950 - b/w) - Typical screwball comedy, with Celeste Holm, Ronald Colman and Vincent Price.

Man with A Cloak (1951  - b/w) - Barbara Stanwyck, Leslie Caron and Joseph Cotten in a dry, average period bodice-ripper with a not very exciting twist.

His Kind of Woman (1951- b/w) - A typical jungle-set noir, even though Vincent Price gives good heavy.

No Highway In The Sky (1951 - B/W) -  Routine proto-Airport airbound melodrama with James Stewart, Marlene Dietrich and various Brits.

Thunder in the East (1952 - b/w) - Another artless Alan Ladd potboiler set in a phony India, the only authenticity being a framed photo of Gandhi. Deborah Kerr is the token Brit.

Rough Shoot (1953 - b/w) - Joel McCrea in an unmemorable do over of Rogue Male/ManHunt.

City Beneath the Sea (1953) - Average jungle/sea adventure with Robert Ryan and Anthony Quinn.

The Disembodied (1956 - b/w) - Rubbishy Monogram jungle schlock.

Pulgarcito (1957) - Rene Cardona Mariachi-themed version of Tom Thumb, with a lot of weird Singing Ringing Tree-ish stuff.

Floods of Fear (1958 - b/w) - Fauxmerican floodery melodrama with Howard Keel, and being made in the UK, Irish actors Cyril Cusack and Eddie Byrne as Americans. Plus Harry H. Corbett. It's impossible to take seriously.

Big Deal on Madonna Street (1958 - b/w) - Always imagined this as a tough if darly comic noir, but it's Gassman, Mastroianni, Cardinale and Toto in a sentimental, light and aimless sub-Ealing heistcom.

The Young Lions (1958) - generic Fox Nazidom.See also The Desert Fox (1951 - b/w).

Intent to Kill (1958 - b/w) - Faux-Canadian hospital melodrama drudgery with Richard Todd and Warren Stevens.

Under Ten Flags (1960 - b/w) - Average WW2 fare with Van Heflin and Charles Laughton faux-British early Macaroni Combat with a decent British cast - Cecil Parker, Liam Redmond (he was born pre-1922, so technically he was British), Ralph Truman.

Zazie Dans Le Metro (1960) - Baffling French zaniness from Louis Malle.

Raymie (1960 - b/w) - A discovery. I've been long looking for this film. David Ladd is immensely more likeable as a kid than as an adult, as a kid who just spends his time fishing and talking to old men. That's the whole film. At least, you don't want him to choke on a load of cocaine eaten like space dust, like in the Wild Geese.

Stopover Forever (1964 - b/w|) - Forgettable 56-minute tropical crime featurette with Ann Bell and Conrad Phillips.

Dead Ringer (1964 - B/W) - A dullish mutton-dressed-as-lamb twin-thriller with Bette Davis, Karl Malden and Peter Lawford, scored by Andrew Preview.

Bílá paní (1965 - b/w) - Czech-alike of the Ghosts of Motley Hall.

Sword of AliBaba (1965) - A remake of the 1944 Maria Montez film, even with scenes from the original. Blonde Jocelyn Lane is a very unconvincing Arab princess.

Trunk to Cairo (1966) - Menahem Golan cashes in on the Eurospy craze with this bland Egypt-set yarn with Audie Murphy for once not at war or in the west.

The Cape Town Affair (1966)  -Claire Trevor and James Brolin and Jacqueline Bisset in an unmemorable, slightly Towers of London-ish African-shot sub-noir. Shonky, almost sub-ITC production values.

Tarzan and the Valley of Gold (1966) - An uneasy mix of Eurospy, lost world adventure and jungle scrapes, though Mike Henry isn't a great actor, his characterisation is less grating than the typical Weissmuller-ish portrayal of a jungle dolt.

Watched the four Matt Helms.Sillier and more outré than the Bonds, they are also annoyingly goofy.
The Silencers (1966) is like all of the series, irritating goofball nonsense with Dean Martin looking like a dad waiting to collect his daughters at the disco.
Murderer's Row (1966) is more of the same. Karl Malden's baddie is fun, but it's so obnoxious.
The Ambushers (1967) pushes it even more into Batman territory, but with sexist bullshit instead of charm, a brutally miscast Albert Salmi as a South American dictator and a flying saucer.
The Wrecking Crew (1968) - Nigel Green is a good baddie, but Elke Sommer is silly, Nancy Kwan looks lost, and the Danish scenery, well, there's Californian road signs, though the brief Downing Street scene looks more authentic than the main bulk of the film.  Poor Sharon Tate.

Little Fauss and Big Halsy (1970) - More New Hollywood eejitry with Robert Redford and Michael J. Pollard.

The Phynx (1970) - A knockoff Monkees are hired as spies to rescue a cast of ageing celebs from Communist Albania. A discovery of the year. Quite Wonka-esque. Somehow not annoying in its silliness, but ambitious. Insane. Features a fake London.

The Projectionist (1971) - It's an acquired taste, but it's winning. Chuck McCann has a goofy charm as the lead, who dreams that he is in various classic films. The merging of original and archive footage is excellently done, that you don't notice that it's not from the 40s until Rodney Dangerfield pops up.

The Short Night of Glass Dolls (1971) - A stylish, imaginative but rather grim and nonsensical giallo, with Jean Sorel, Mario Adorf, Barbara Bach and Ingrid Thulin.

Mrs. Pollifax - Spy (1971) - It's very telly. It's a bit like an episode of Mission: Impossible starring Rosalind Russell, who's basically Auntie Mame here. Harold Gould is the Soviet. Darren McGavin is her CIA sidekick. Batman vet Leslie Martinson directs. If it had a better budget (actual European locations) and a less jokey cast, it might have worked. It's very sitcommy. No one's taking it seriously. The novels later spun-off a TV pilot with Angela Lansbury and Ed Bishop (because it was shot in Galway).

Treaure Island (1972) - Orson Welles/Harry Alan Towers adap, has the feeling of a foreign kids' TV serial dubbed for CBBC.

La Valise (1973) - Generic French comedy adventure with Mireille Darc, begins with a spaghetti western pastiche.

Ace Eli and Rodger of the Skies (1973) - Watching this schmaltzy father-son air show film with Cliff Robertson and the annoying little lad off Poseidon Adventure, I was struck, "weird how the exteriors in some scenes look like Wicklow". Turns out I was right. So bad Spielberg took his name off.
See also
The Great Waldo Pepper (1975) - It has moments of excitement, Robert Redford is ideally cast, but it glosses over moments of death like a parent trying to pretend a child's beloved relative isn't dead, and it becomes another silent-era Hollywood nostalgiafest that was all the rage in '75.

The Girl from Petrovka (1974) - Touristy but inauthentic Soviet-set romance with Hal Holbrook, Goldie Hawn as a silly-accented ballerina and Anthony Hopkins.

Lords of Flatbush (1974) - Sub-Mean Streets overaged teen gangbang with Perry King, Henry Winkler, Sylvester Stallone and some other bloke.

Stavisky (1974) - Typical French gangster pic with Belmondo, but there is a role from Michael Lonsdale.

Journey into Fear (1975) - Despite Vincent Price AND Ian McShane amongst many others, this is a typical dull Canadian film, even though it is set in Greece.

Out of Season (1975) - Peculiar, boring love triangle between Cliff Robertson and mother and daughter Vanessa Redgrave and a miscast Susan George.

Ode to Billy Joe (1976) - Oh Jesus, another country-song adaptation with Glynnis O'Connor and Robby Benson as two unlikeable, dweeby teens.

House of Shadows (1976) - Oddly hypnotic but rubbish faux-Eurohorror from Argentina with John Gavin and Yvonne De Carlo.

Mother, Juggs and Speed (1976) - Harvey Keitel, Raquel Welch and Bill Cosby appear in a car chase comedy/weepie drama that despite its Needhamesque marketing, and befitting Cosby's style, is actually a sentimental light-drama about ambulancemen.

Nickelodeon (1976) - Ok.ru. Another Bogdanovich-Ryan O'Neal ego-marathon. The same 30s Hollywood dramedy everyone was making in the 70s.

Blondy (1976) - Starring Bibi Andersson and Rod Taylor as an Aussie-accented American UN attaché, this is marketed as an Emmanuelle-type picture, but it's actually a Crazies/Cassandra Crossing international viral outbreak picture combined with softcore melodrama. It's not very good.
There are weird puppets.

The Other Side of the Wind (1977/2018) - Oh well, it's as if Orson Welles directed a Jess Franco film (considering Jesus had been his assistant) or an Al Adamson film (with a lot of the same collaborators including Gary Graver and Geoffrey Land)..

Les Passagers (1977) - Grim, unlikeable hostage-thriller with Mireille Darc, Adolfo Celi and Jean Louis Trintignant.

Violette Noziere (1978) - Chabrol-helmed French-Canadian crime biopic with Isabelle Huppert. Dry, boring, no hint of Canadian sensationalism, just the cold.

French Postcards (1978) - A slightly less Little Romance. Aimed at Americans who have a cliched view of Paris. Star Valerie Quenessen went onto the unlikely duo of Conan and Silas, then quit acting and died in a  car crash.

The Great Santini (1979) - Also, like Conrack, based on a novel by Pat Conroy, this time based sort-of  on his father, Robert Duvall is good, the Spanish prologue is fun, but it is rather too treacly/After School Special once it reaches Michael O'Keefe, and Blythe Danner is too young for her role (though I suppose if you count the Dawson Casting, it works out slightly).

Nightwing (1979) - Finally found this, and it's awful. Italian-Americans as Indians in beatle wigs vs bats, while David Warner tries his best to give it dignity in a cravat.


Night Boat to Dublin (1943 - b/w) - Robert Newton, Herbert Lom, Guy Middleton,Leslie Dwyer, Valentine Dyall, Marius Goring, Brenda Bruce, Wilfred (sic) Hyde-White and Edmundo Ros and his Rhumba (sic) Band star in a typical, not very Irish propaganda thriller. It doesn't even climax here. It ends in Devon.

The Bicycle Thief (1949 - b/w)- Attractive but drizzling with sentiment.

Park Row (1952- b/w) - Basically, Sam Fuller makes the story of the people you hear about in a western but never see. The late 19th century newspaperscene doesn't intrigue me. It looks like a western.

The Good Die Young (1954 - b/w) - Typical British crime movie of the 50s, with a mixed Transatlantic cast.

The Draughtman's Contract (1982) - I found it almost inpenetrable, even though I liked the soundtrack since I was a  wee kid.

The Pirate Movie (1982) - Part of the 80s Bill Kerrnaisance, this sloppy Airplane-ish take on Gilbert and Sullivan, with Kristy McNicol, Christopher Atkins, a pre-Prisoner Maggie Kirkpatrick, and Garry "Norman Gunston" MacDonald is an odd duck indeed.

34 - Aurum horror encyclopaedia roundup

Someone at the Door (1950 - b/w) - Michael Medwin an annoyingly eager lead in this Hammer old dark house comedy.

The White Reindeer (1952 - b/w) - Basically a travelogue of Finland with spooky overtones.

Agatha, laß das Morden sein (1960 - b/w) - Forgettable

El Imperio del Dracula     (1967 - b/w) - Forgettable, sub-Dark Shadows Mexican vampire incompetence.

War of the Zombies (1965) - Forgettable, possibly-a-horror peplum.

The Wrong Box (1966) - All-star, overlong comedy. Loads of comedians, no jokes.

The Unnaturals (1969 - b/w) - Margheriti fox-hunting faux-British supernatural 20s whodunit starring  Joachim Fuchsberger, and Claudo Volonte, brother of Gian Maria Volonte, who bears a more-than-uncanny resemblance to Julian Holloway, to the point I initially wondered if this was an appearance the IMDb had not noticed.

Five Dolls for an August Moon (1970) - Generic, swinging, Mario Bava version of Ten Little Indians.

Multiple Maniacs (1970 - b/w) - Amateurish, ugly early festival of debauchery from Divine and John Waters and co.

The Vampire Happening (1971) - Terrible German sex comedy by Freddie Francis, costarring Ferdy Mayne as Dracula. It's very Fearless Vampire Killers.

The Etruscan Kills Again (1972) - Alex Cord, Samantha Eggar and John Marley in  a dreary Yugoslavian-set giallo.

Morbo (1972) - Dreary Spanish caravanning horror with Michael J. Pollard.

The Corruption of Chris Miller (1972) - The Fox/Killing of Sister George-type lesbianism horror with Barry Stokes and Jean Seberg.

Inn of the Damned (1975) - Sub-Grundy/Crawford's western/horror with Alex Cord, Dame Judith Anderson, Michael Craig and Joseph Furst.

Your Vice Is A Locked Room And Only I Have The Key (1972) - Generic giallo.

Blackenstein (1973) - Surprisingly not an Al Adamson picture, but just as intolerably amateurish.

Baba Yaga (1973) - Nazi-infused pervy dreamlike comic strip adaptation, where a bedraggled Carroll Baker gets kinky with an Amanda Barrie-lookalike.

Autopsy (1974) - Another unmemorable 70s giallo with Barry Primus, Mimsy Farmer and Ray Lovelock.

All in the Dim Cold Night (1974) - Forgettable Taiwanese haunted wuxia.
See also Ghost of the Mirror (1974) with a young Brigitte Lin, and Blood Reincarnation (1974).

Vera, un cuento cruel (1974) - Generic, forgetable period gothic with Lucia Bose.

The Guru of the Seven Cities (1975) - Unmemorable Brazilian crime movie. Listed as horror by Aurum.

Quem tem medo de Lobisomem (1975)  - Goofy Brazilian werewolf-adventure.
See also O Homen Lobo (1971) - a dreary b/w almost-home movie-ish thing that resembles a snuff film with musical interludes.

Die Elixiere des Teufels (1976) - German medieval realism.

The Death Master (1977) - Amateurish fanfilm.

Bloodlust (1976/77) - Forgettable, sleazy Swiss video nasty.

Patrick Lives Again (1979) - Schlocky, forgettable Italian unofficial sequel to the Aussie thriller.

Aquella Casa En Las Afueras (1979) - Dreary, grey, unimaginative fare from Eugenio Martin.

Humongous (1982) - A serviceable if forgettable Canadian island slasher.

The House (1982) - Bland Icelandic haunting.

The Keep (1983) - It's a mess. Ian McKellen looks slightly too young for his character, but hey, what's Christmassier than having Walking in the Air as the theme?

Las amantes del señor de la noche (1986) - A rather beige erotic witchcraft-thriller, despite being directed by and starring Isela Vega, with titan of Mexican cinema Emilio Fernández. It feels older than it is. Watching it, I presumed it was from 1980-81.

Friday, 29 November 2019


A Farewell to Arms (1932 - b/w) - Typical Hollywood tearjerking war romance. Weird to see Helen Hayes young.

Palooka (1934 - b/w) - Forgettable Jimmy Durante vehicle/adap of the comic strip Joe Palooka.

Brown on Resolution (1935 - b/w) - Typical WW1 army thing, notable for being John Mills' first lead.

Night Train To Munich (1940) -  The Lady Vanishes... again.

My Son, My Son (1940) - Forgettable American story of life in Manchester, with Louis Hayward.

Cottage to Let (1941) - Typical 40s wartime thriller made in Britain, with Leslie Banks, Alastair Sim, John Mills, Michael Wilding and a fifteen year old George Cole.

Bowery at Midnight (1942 - b/w) - Now, I thought this was a Bowery Boys/Lugosi comedy for Monogram. It's actually a Monogram crime thing with Lugosi. Unmemorable.

Berlin Correspondent (1942 - b/w) - Generic wartime thriller with Dana Andrews.

Son of Fury (1942 - b/w) - Tyrone Power, Gene Tierney, George Sanders, Elsa Lanchester, John Carradine and Master Roddy McDowall star in this typical swashbuckler.

Adventures of Tartu (1943) - Wartime propaganda with Robert Donat.

The North Star (1943 - b/w) - hollywood Ukrainian propaganda with Erich von Stroheim.

The Monkey's Paw (1948 - b/w) - An atmospheric but forgettable adaptation. Megs Jenkins plays the mother, despite being actually younger than Eric Micklewood (one of the British Intelligence men in Kentucky Fried Movie) who plays her son and  almost young enough to be her on-screen husband Milton Rosmer's granddaughter. She would later reprise the role at a more suitable age in an episode of Orson Welles' Great Mysteries.

The Great Lover (1949) - Another anodyne kiddy-themed Bob Hope film, this time as a scoutmaster. Weird to see Roland Young and Roland Culver billed over George Reeves.

Britannia Mews (1949 - b/w) - Maureen O'Hara plays an Irish-accented London girl.

We Were Strangers (1949 - b/w) - Forgettable, forgotten Cuban saga with John Garfield, Jennifer Jones, Pedro Armendariz and directed by John Huston.

The Man in Black (1950 - b/w) - Hammer quickie with Valentine Dyall, watchable only to see that Sid James was always old.

Outcast of the Islands (1951) - Trevor Howard in ludicrous brownface-heavy tropical melodrama.

Hans Christian Andersen (1952) - Danny Kaye on autopilot. Weird live-action/ballet hybrid.

The World in His Arms (1952)  - Another generic swashbuckler, with Gregory Peck.

White Witch Doctor (1953) - Susan Hayward and Robert Mitchum in a boilerplate jungle romance.

Man on a Tightrope (1953)`- Fredric March, Terry Moore, Gloria Grahame, Cameron Mitchell, Adolphe Menjou, Adolphe Menjou, Robert Beatty, Alexander D'Arcy and Richard Boone star in a typical circus yarn.
See also The Big Show (1961).

Lilacs in the Spring (1954 - b/w) - Errol Flynn and Anna Neagle in a forgettable semi-colour musical. Features Sean Connery's debut and singing ghostly Chelsea Pensioners.

I am a Camera (1955) - Cabaret with Julie Harris, Laurence Harvey, Shelley Winters, Ron Randell and Anton Diffring.

The Ten Commandments (1956) - Like westerns, to me, biblical epics are very samey.

Jacqueline (1956) -  Catherine Cookson adap moved from Tyneside to Belfast, with lots of blarney, plus a disconcertingly beardless Noel Purcell, Liam Redmond, Cyril Cusack as Parrot-Face Davies, and Richard O'Sullivan when he had an Irish accent.

Harry Black and the Tiger (1958) - Generic adventure in India with Stewart Granger.

Odds Against Tomorrow (1959 - b/w) - Noir only atypical cos Harry Belafonte's in it.

The Story of Ruth (1960) - Generic, simultaneously expensive-looking but cheap-feeling epic, with Stuart Whitman in his he-man idol stage.

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1960) - MGM colour version of the saga, with boxer Archie Moore as Jim, Tony Randall,Finlay Currie and John Carradine. Michael Curtiz helms a decent, acceptable version of the story, but Moore isn't a good actor, and it feels neutered.

A Dog of Flanders (1960) - Sentimental but colourful Fox dog-story, not to be confused with the Disney version of Greyfriars Bobby, which also has Donald Crisp.

Seven Thieves (1960 - b/w) - Edward G. Robinson, Rod Steiger and Joan Collins in a confused caper. Set on the Riviera, shot brightly in b/w, so it's noir one thing or another. It's almost a pilot for Mission Impossible.

The House in Marsh Road (1960 - b/w) - Forgettable haunted house quickie that resembles every other British thriller b-picture of the era.

Panic (1963 - b/w) - Glyn Houston stars in a forgettable boxing-noir quickie.

The Pawnbroker (1964 - b/w) - Feels like Corman's the Intruder, being an exploitation message picture even though it is much higherbrow, it is still AIP.`

Maya (1966) - Disneyesque elephant saga that spunoff a TV series, with stars Jay North (previously the Aryan-American Dennis the Menace) and Bollywood boy actor Sajid Khan. This has Clint Walker as the pilot-only lead for theatrical release, only to go conveniently missing for the TV series, which like the film, actually shot on location in India (and featured the likes of Prem Nath, Amrish Puri and Kabir Bedi).

Judith (1966) - Even-then-dated romance with Peter Finch and Sophia Loren in Israel.

SORREL FLOWER (1967) - Bog-standard mysterious French drama with Mireille Darc.

They Saved Hitler's Brain (1968?) - A hodgepodge of random footage, nowhere as interesting as it sounds.

Più tardi Claire, più tardi... (1968 - b/w) - Forgettable, dated gothic horror with Gary Merrill.

Counterpoint (1968) - I'm sure I reviewed this forgettable backlot war movie with Heston, Maximillian Schell and Anton Diffring but it must have gotten lost.

La Piu Bellla Coppia Del Mondo (1968) - Begins with a jungle quickie sketch, but is a pop comedy starring Walter Chiari and Adriano Celentano.

Negatives (1968) - Sleazy nonsense about sexual roleplay with Glenda Jackson, Diane Cilento, and Special Guest Star Maurice Denham, who spends his scenes in bed.

It's Your Move (1968) - Grand Slam Part 2, but nowhere near as fun, just Edward G. Robinson, Terry-Thomas, Adolfo Celi and George Rigaud in a villa.

Submarine X-1 (1969) - One of those cheap British-made UA war films with a US minor star supported by British TV actors. Here, it's James Caan before he rose to actual stardom opposite future Emmerdale staple Norman Bowler. Very ITC in its appearance.

Slaves (1969) - Dionne Warwick, Burl Ives and Stephen Boyd in an indistinguished, cheapskate sub-Mandingo exploiter.

El Che Guevera (1969) - Even more incompetent than the Omar Sharif film it is mockbusting. With Francisco Rabal as Che and John Ireland as a Yank.

The Happy Ending (1969) - Pornographic muzak with Jean Simmons, John Forsythe and "Robert" Darin.

Diary of a Mad Housewife (1970) - Sleazy romantic drama, I can see why it has never been revived, even though it got plaudits for Carrie Snodgress. It's rough.

Rosolino Paternò, soldato/Operation SNAFU (1970) - Robards, Landau and Falk in a forgettable Italian comedy.

Gregory and his Angel (1970) - Schamltzy Mexican family film about a little girl angel guiding Broderick Crawford.

Ransom Money (1970) - Also with Broderick Crawford, this is an Al Adamson-ish story about a boy with a big flashy-light sci-fi bomb hoisted on his neck. It's supposed to be a serious drama.

My Lover, My Son (1970) - Inexplicable, unwatchable tale of Romy Schneider and Dennis Waterman as mother and son. Yes, really.

The Molly Maguires (1970) - Lush but kind of boring Irish saga in Pennsylvania with Richard Harris as an Armagh man vs Sean Connery as an Irishman. Frank Finlay's Welsh accent as the police captain sounds vaguely Tom Hardy-as-Bane-ish.

Tell Me That You Love Me, Junie Moon (1970) - Idiotic story of disabled folk, with Liza Minnelli, narration in song by Pete Seeger, plus Ken Howard and Fred Williamson who is distractingly out of place.  And Nancy Marchand without her CGI-ed floating Livia Soprano head.

Moonfire (1970) - PIlot-ish trucker yarn. Makes Nazis, rocket science, bikers and interracial trucker buddies (Charles Napier, Richard Egan and Sonny Liston) boring.

Who Says I Can't Ride A Rainbow (1971) - Messy family film about Jack Klugman as an inner-city farmer in Greenwich Village. Confused. The first credited movie role of Morgan Freeman as a character named Afro.

T.R. Baskin (1971) - Typical 70s grim romantic-comedy-drama with Candice Bergen as a possibly-teenage prostitute seducing Peter Boyle.

Honky (1971) - Afterschool Special-like interracial romance with Brenda Sykes. Screen debut of John Hillerman.

Little Murders (1971) - More Simonesque drudgery.

The Touch (1971) - Bergman unites Max Von Sydow, Bibi Andersson, a shouty, beardy Elliott Gould and Benidorm's Sheila Reid in a typically cold venture, only this time it's in English.

Black Girl (1972) - Very televisual (it was made by Cinerama/ABC) play adaptation by Ossie Davis, with Leslie Uggams.

Pete 'N' Tillie (1972) - Typical beige-y 70s comdram with Carol Burnett and Walter Matthau.

 The Cremators (1972) - Terrible. People terrified by giant flashing lights.

Unholy Rollers (1972) - Claudia Jennings stars as a roller derby champ in a down and dirty, confused, messy sorta-comedy-drama produced by Roger Corman. It attempts a bit of Altmanish Americana, and yet goes a bit crazy with some unauthorised derby on a public road, and a weirdly 50s theme tune.

A Place Called Today (1972) - Sleazy, unlikeable racial politicker with Lana Wood.

Ground Zero (1973) - Amateurish Golden Gate Bridge bomb actioner, which astonishingly got a UK theatrical release. Why? God knows.

PETE, PEARL AND THE POLE (1973) - Tony Anthony and Adolfo Celi in a suspiciously  rural-located New York-set crime saga that though indebted to the Godfather, feels like a comedy even though it isn't.

A Delicate Balance (1973) - Typical, reserved, colourless American Film Theatre production, with Paul Scofield and Katharine Hepburn.

The Three Musketeers (1973) - A bit too goofy and pleased-with-itself to be enjoyable. Oddly Ken Russell-esque ball sequence.

The Day of the Wolves (1973) - Ropey though ambitious heist thriller involving a twist where the thief is a kids' TV host.

Little Mother (1973) - Interesting, ambitious but ultimately flawed Radley Metzger attempt to go mainstream, in a rather Harry Alan Towersy biopic of Eva Peron, except it isn't, and it's clearly set in the 70s. Christiane Kruger is not-Evita, while Siegfried Rauch is her husband, Mark Damon is a love interest, and Anton Diffring the Cardinal. Made in Yugoslavia. Written by a Dubliner, Brian Phelan, who also wrote the Niall Toibin-Pierce Brosnan TV movie Murphy's Stroke and RTE drama The Treaty.

The Rites of Frankenstein (1973) - Jess Franco nonsense. Zoom-shots, characters in period shot wandering about, Dennis Price waiting to die...

The Candy Snatchers (1973) - This is critically acclaimed, but I didn't get it. Sleazy exploitation crime thriller about an overage, kidnapped schoolgirl.

Cinderella Liberty (1973) - Typical New Hollywood romance-with-an-edge with James Caan and Marsha Mason.

The Front Page (1974) - The 30s in the US don't fascinate me. This feels like every other 30s post-Sting Hollywood film, despite being by Billy Wilder. The name Jennings Lang is a sign. It feels adequate, nothing more, nothing less.

The Gambler (1974) - Sleazy, unlikeable James Caan crime, clearly written by a perv. Oh, yeah, James Toback wrote it.

Conrack (1974) - Affecting, naturalistic story based on the real-life white teacher who taught a group of illiterate black kids  in the South Carolina islands who live a backward pre-technological life. Jon Voight is ironically cast, knowing his bigoted modern ways, and the kids are the actual kids from Pat Conroy's memoir, playing themselves.

When The North Wind Blows (1974) - Dan Haggerty in the snow with a tiger. Typical Sunn Classics wilderness schlock.

A Black Ribbon For Deborah (1974) - Forgettable giallo with Gig Young and a circus.

Hester Street (1975) - Very PBS drama with Carol Kane. Directed by Joan Micklin Silver.

Shampoo (1975) - Oh, feck off, Hal Ashby.

Galileo (1975) - Peculiar choirboy-narrated semi-musical play. You can tell, though that Topol will recycle his performance here as Zarkov in Flash Gordon, so that's nice.

Johnny Firecloud (1975) - Amateurish Dave Friedman sub-Billy Jack Native American vigilante nonsense.

The Bullet Train (1975) - Generic Japanese actioner with a bit of a disaster slant, with Sonny Chiba.

Bobbie Jo and the Outlaw (1976) - Generic Southern Bonnie and Clyde-meets-country-and-western car chase exploitation with Marjoe Gortner and Lynda Carter.

All This and World War II (1976) - Insane. A mix of documentary and classic film footage from/about World War Two, soundtracked by an all-star band singing Beatles songs. The Bee Gees, Rod Stewart, the Quo, David Essex,Roy Wood, Lyndsey De Paul, Peter Gabriel, Keith Moon, Leo Sayer, the Four Seasons, Tina Turner, Jeff Lynne, Helen Reddy, Bryan Ferry and Frankie Laine... Yes, really.

Lifeguard (1976) - Sunny yet inwardly grim Sam Elliott vehicle, like a darker pilot for Baywatch, down to Parker Stevenson. Features teenage stalkers and suicide. Boring.

Birch Interval (1976) - Eddie Albert and Rip Torn in sentimental 40s-ish Amish family drama.

Julia (1977) - Redgrave, Fonda and a debuting Streep in 40s-style Holocaust woman's picture from Fred Zinnemann. Shot in the UK, hence Maurice Denham.

The Baron (1977) - Calvin Lockhart does a film about indie filmmaking, almost a blaxploitation version of Hollywood Man. It doesn't make much sense, but it has some heart and Joan Blondell as a crime boss.

First Love (1977) - Another post-Love Story romantic dirge with William Katt and Susan Dey, and some football.

Stunts (1977) - Low-budget, almost televisual excuse for action with Robert Forster, for New Line.

The Dragon Lives Again (1977) - If Al Adamson worked in Hong Kong and didn't care about copyrights...

The Redeemer - Son of Satan (1978) - Odd but clunky slasher disguised as an Omen knockoff.

Youngblood (1978) - Odd, rough-edged, grim coming of age AIP late-period blaxploitation.

King Frat (1979) - Silly, stupid, somewhat inventive in its grossness, but with a cast of students including an unconvincing Indian chief, all of whom are in their forties - at least.

The Secret of Nikola Tesla (1980) - Staid Eastern bloc biopic with guesting Orson Welles, Strother Martin and Dennis Patrick.

Windows (1980) - Talia Shire and Elizabeth Ashley (as a psycho) in Cruising for lesbians. At least, being directed by Gordon Willis, it is well-photographed.

Raggedy Man (1981) - Peculiar sun-kissed nostalgic romantic drama with Sissy Spacek, Eric Roberts and Henry Thomas that has a sudden last-act swerve into slasherdom. Almost Charles B. Pierce-ish.

Force Five (1981) - Basically A Fistful of Yen as a feature. Even the guy playing the Senator looks a lot like Derek Murcott as the British Intelligence man. Master Bong Soo Han is in the same role.

Six Pack (1982) - Kenny Rogers, Erin Gray and Diane Lane try to do something like a Disney version of a Hal Needham movie. Forgettable kiddy fluff.

Heidi's Song (1982) - Animesque Hanna-Barbera attempt at expensive animation. Unmemorable kiddy filler.  A few dodgy painted backgrounds and props show that even though money was spent, corners were still cost. The character animation is significantly more detailed than the average H-B cartoon, but the backgrounds wouldn't look out of place in Jabberjaw.

The King of Comedy (1982) - Rupert Pupkin really reminds me of Brendan O'Carroll. I find it a little too slick (too mid-80s in style), and too elongated, and I can see why it flopped. it's almost too dark that it feels like the black jokes are hard to notice.

Diner (1982) - Not my thing. It stills feels very early 80s, despite the 50s setting.

Silkwood (1983) - Almost too dry for its own good. Has Meryl Streep singing.

Variety (1983) - Film4 thing about porn in New York. Aimless.

The Survivors (1983) - Robin Williams and Walter Matthau in a film that feels like a typically Canadian attempt at comedy, but isn't Canadian at all.

Eureka (1983) - It looks stunning, but being Roeg, it's quite incomprehensible. The  British Columbia stuff is lovely. Cameo from Ian "Huck Finn" Tracey. It's very music video-ey. John Boorman said it was "the best picture ever made - for an hour", before it dilutes into a tedious courtroom drama with Norman Beaton and Emrys James.

Angelo My Love (1983) - Peculiar docudrama starring actual Manhattan Romani, directed by Robert Duvall. A confused halfway point between drama and reality.

Christine (1983) - The choice of un-50s music for the flashback doesn't work. It feels a bit goofy, Robert Prosky is great, but it feels like a Tales from the Darkside segment.

Better off Dead (1985) - Some bits of invention, but a mostly insufferable teen comedy. The animation helps.

The Lonely Passion of Judith Hearne (1987) - The first of that initial whirl of prestige Irish films that dominate the scene today. This is bolstered by an underrated and underseen Maggie Smith performance, doing a perfect Irish accent. For once, Bob Hoskins' American accent works, because he's not actually American. He's an Irishman who went to New York and now won't shut up about it. Prunella Scales is also oddly convincingly Irish, at the point of her career c. After Henry where she seemed to look ten years younger than she was as Sybil.

Casino (1995) - It's a fascinating story, but seeing it dramatised doesn't grab me.
Ditto Goodfellas (1990).

Friday, 15 November 2019


Oliver Twist (1933 - b/w) - Stagey, melodramatic, silent-esque Monogram adap - so cheap London is represented by a photo of a screen-print painting.

In the Wake of the Bounty (1933 - b/w) - Errol Flynn as Fletcher Christian in what is mostly a travelogue of Polynesia with a few stagey bits dramatising the Mutiny on the Bounty.

The Kennel Murder Case (1933 - b/w) - The highlight of this Philo Vance film with William Powell, an otherwise average mystery is a bit where a large dog seemingly rapes the villain.

The Emperor Jones (1933 - b/w) - The portrayal of slaves has dated, and  it does feel a bit "30s jungle programmer", but Paul Robeson's star quality shines.

Crime and Punishment (1935 - b/w) - barely resembling the original novel, just an attempt to make Peter Lorre a leading man.

My Man Godfrey (1936 - b/w) - Not a fan of screwball comedies, I'm afraid. I often feel, "do I get this?".

The Amazing Adventure (1936  - b/w) - Forgettable quickie romcom inexplicably starring Cary Grant.

Curtain Call (1940 - B/W)   - Average wartime stage-comedy with Alan Mowbray.

The Missing Million (1942 - b/w) - Another indistinguishable Edgar Wallace movie. 

Pittsburgh (1942 - b/w) - Weird seeing Randolph Scott billed over John Wayne. And Dietrich above them. And it's not a western. It's just a boardroom drama.
Dakota (1945 - b/w) - Another western land saga. Wayne and Vera  Hruba Ralston. An attempt at A-filmdom from Republic.

Jane Eyre (1943 - b/w) - Lewtonesque take, basically a Mercury Theater Motion Picture.

Salome, Where She Danced (1945) - Slushy western-romance retelling of Middle Eastern stories with Yvonne de Carlo.

The Spider (1945 - b/w) - Dreary Orleans-set Richard Conte vehicle.

The Dark Corner (1946 - b/w) - Another boilerplate Lucille Ball noir.

The Big Lift (1950  -b/w) - An average US war docudrama with Montgomery Clift.

Double Confession (1950 - b/w) - Derek Farr in a quickie that wants to be Brighton Rock, with William Hartnell in carnival backgrounds, and a spastic, drunken Peter Lorre.

Bedtime for Bonzo (1951 - b/w) - Walter Slezak's mad scientist is the best thing of this Disney-ish, silly Ronald Reagan-raises-a-chimp comedy. Bonzo Goes to College (1952 - b/w) instead has Edmund Gwenn and Maureen O'Sullivan, and is even worse.

Little Boy Lost (1953 - b/w) - Sentimental Bing Crosby in Europe slop.

Man in the Dark (1953 - b/w) - Undistinguished rollercoaster noir with Edmond O'Brien - in 3-d.

Dance Hall Racket (1954 - b/w) - From Lenny Bruce and the director of Robot Monster, a silly little action-free, suspense-free cheapie, despite Timothy Farrell.

Highway Dragnet (1954 - b/w) - Corman cheapie in the desert. Undistinguished, unmemorable.

Charade (1954 - b/w) - Sub-Maugham anthology by Roy Kellino, his ex-wife Pamela and her-then husband James Mason.

The Wild Party (1956 - b/w) - Downbeat, half-baked Anthony Quinn noir. Not my thing.

Carousel (1956) - Heaven is a place of plastic Christmas stars on visible strings. The main odd thing though is that Shirley Jones' performance of You'll Never Walk Alone sounds weird. It sounds out of tune, because one is so used to hearing thousands of smashed Scousers singing an out of tune version of the strikingly different, less operatic Gerry and the Pacemakers arrangement that it doesn't sound like the same song.  Also, weird to see Cameron Mitchell in something expensive. Not a fan of musicals, to be honest.

Death in Small Doses (1957 - b/w) - Dozy drugsploiter with Chuck Connors.

Zero Hour (1957 - b/w) - Airplane from the 50s. Weird to see Geoffrey Toone in a US role.

The Wayward Bus (1957 - b/w) - Undistinguished, time-killing Steinbeck adap, an excuse for Joan Collins and Jayne Mansfield.

Battle of the River Plate (1957) - A lot of sameyness being a war movie, but the Hispanic setting livens it up a bit.

The Sad Sack (1957 - b/w) - Silly comic-strip comedy with Jerry Lewis and Peter Lorre as an Arab.

Cry Baby Killer (1958 - b/w) - Jack Nicholson in a tawdry, silly JD murder joint.

Lost, Lonely and Vicious (1958 - b/w) - A dowdy, silly Howco teen movie.

When Hell Broke Loose (1958 - b/w) - second-rate war movie with Charles Bronson in his big break.

Maracaibo (1958) - Another Paramount colour South American tediurama, with Cornel Wilde.

Cavalry Command (1958) - Amateurish color western set in the Philippines with John Agar.

Blind Date (1959 - b/w) - Typical British noir, by Joseph Losey, starring Hardy Kruger as a Dutchman and Stanley Baker.

Cuban Rebel Girls (1959 - b/w) - Cheesecake-heavy indulgence for Errol Flynn.

High School Caesar (1960 - b/w) - Corman-produced overage teen schlock.

David and Goliath (1960) - Italian peplum with Orson Welles and his own voice and his old pal Hilton Edwards, whose name is mangled in Italian faux-English style as "Hilton Hedward", to the extent one might think this doyenne of the Dublin theatre scene was some Italian luvvie.

Pirate of the Black Hawk (1960) - Another basic Italian pirate film, marketed as starring Bardot, not telling the viewer it is not Brigitte but her sister Mijanou.

Stowaway in the Sky (1960) - Effectively a travelogue, but eccentric and lovely from the director of the Red Balloon.

Paradise Alley (1962 - b/w) - Juvenile delinquents and Hugo Haas as himself in this strange, unsuccesful noirish comedy-drama.

Terror of the Blood Hunters (1962 - b/w) - Jerry Warren jungle grot.

A Prize of Arms (1962 - b/w) - Typical British crime movie with Stanley Baker. Downbeat.

Jacktown (1962 - b/w) - Grody, jailbait juvenile delinquency with Patty McCormick.

We Shall Return (1963 - b/w) - Amateurish Cubansploitation with Cesar Romero.

Girl in the Headlines (1963 - b/w) - A typical British B-movie, generic enough, but with a bit more of a budget, with Ian Hendry and Ronald Fraser.

The Greenwich Village Story (1963 - b/w) - semi-documentary variety showcase. A Psychotronic choice. Distributed by Compton.

Sandokan the Great (1963) - Colonialist, racist garbage (is this set in Africa or India?) with a browned-up Steve Reeves.
Also watched Morgan the Pirate (1960), another boilerplate, generic Reeves actioner, just a standard pirater.

Goliath And The Sins Of Babylon (1963) - Another junky historically dubious peplum.

Johnny Cool (1963 - b/w) - Henry Silva leads an incredible cast in a rather strange, unlikeable but interesting faux-Italian gangster film. Like a Eurocrime shot on the lot, like a noir.

My Son the Hero (1963) - Generic Giuliano Gemma peplum known only because the trailer was dubbed in a comedy style by Mel Brooks. Sadly, not the film itself.

Honeymoon of Horror (1964 ) - A sexy movie disguised as a pseudo-Monogram cheapie with a faux-Indian butler. Similar to H.G. Lewis' stuff.

Trial of Lee Harvey Oswald (1964 - B/W) - Lazy, uncinematic, stagey Larry Buchanan counterfactual.

Back Door To Hell (1964 - b/w) - Another ramshackle, nearly-worthless Filipino war movie with young Jack Nicholson.

The Secret Invasion (1964) - Impressively mounted, simultaneously grim and silly WW2 actioner by Roger Corman, Stewart Granger, an incongruous Mickey Rooney (remember he can play anything, Japanese, little girl, Fallout Boy), Raf Vallone, Henry Silva and Edd Byrnes storming Dubrovnik.

The Legend of Blood Mountain (1965) - Amateurish, erotic yet supposedly family-friendly Bigfoot comedy, a vehicle for Atlanta horror host Bestoink Dooley, played by George Ellis, who played Boss Hogg in the original Dukes of Hazzard movie - Moonrunners. Terrible, terrible.

Hallucination Generation (1966)  - Dreadful drugsploitation.

The Fat Spy (1966) - Idiotic Beach Party for the older folks with Phyllis Diller, Jayne Mansfield, Jack E. Leonard and Brian Donlevy.

The Swinger (1966) - Another televisual, unlikeable swinging sex com, starring Ann-Margrock.

The Bang Bang Kid (1967) - Silly spaghetti western/steampunk comedy hybrid with Tom Bosley as a rocketship-flying robot gunslinger in a strange medieval/Wild West hybrid town.

The Jackals (1967) - Peculiar, below-average B-western, shot and set in South Africa, starring Sean Connery-alike Robert Gunnar and featuring a bizarre turn by Vincent Price as an elderly cowboy patriarch.

Devil's Angels (1967) - Another rote biker film, despite John Cassavetes.

Three  in the Attic (1968) - Christopher Jones is pretty but a creep in this annoying countercultural AIP sex comedy semi-musical with Chad and Jeremy.

Lock Up Your Daughters (1969) - Irish-shot Tom Jones-y sex farce. Not funny, but Christopher Plummer does well as a camp fop named Lord Foppington. That's the level of humour. Glynis Johns does a lewder version of Mrs. Banks.

Twinky/Lola (1969) - Squeaky Susan George and miscast Charles Bronson have a romance. Every top-rate British character actor appears. And Jimmy Tarbuck as Norman Vaughan and vice versa.

Laughter in the Dark (1969) - Arty, pervy Nabokovery from Nicol Williamson and Anna Karina. Peter Bowles appears.

Les Cannibales (1970) - Liliana Cavani arthouse. Not my thing, but it has Britt Ekland as the world's sexiest priest, and a nice Morricone score.

Musical Mutiny (1970) - Barry Mahon does Woodstock.

Dr. Frankenstein on Campus (1970) - A rather dreary, amateurish Canadian student film.

Jud (1971) - Forgettable vigilante movie, not by Greydon Clark, but feels like it. John "Bud" Cardos appears.

The Pink Angels (1971) - Astonishing, terrible but shocking transvestite biker film with an incredible ending.

The Alf Garnett Saga (1972) - Despite an all-star cast of cameos, I've never found Alf Garnett  that funny. He always seemed to be a one-joke character. Without a laugh track, it feels very bleak, plus Una Stubbs and Tony Booth have been replaced by Adrienne Posta and Paul Angelis.

The Witches' Mountain (1972) - Idiotic Spanish horror with the inevitable Victor Israel and lots of wandering about a villa with an old gypsy.

Superfly TNT (1973) - Still not on DVD. This is the one in Rome and Senegal, and with the likes of William Berger, it is effectively a Eurocrime. Roscoe Lee Browne is in it too, always a plus, and he is convincing as an African tyrant, which is rare for an American actor (who usually mangle the African accents and sound daft). Directed by Ron O'Neal himself.

Mean Streets (1973) - Not much to say. Scorsese doing what he'd do several times later on, but on a small budget, in a guerilla/exploitation style.

Superchick (1973) - Crown International Pictures (who appear as an airline company) try to combine action with the stewardess genre. What we get is an idiotic comedy with dopey karate and John Carradine.

Some Call It Loving (1973) - A nice opening, as bored with live-in sex toy Carl White, Polanski-ish sex mogul Zalman King buys a sleeping beauty Tisa Farrow from carny Logan Ramsey, and attempts to awaken her. Soon gets weird and pervy with bald nuns, but there is a nice round twist ending.

The Savage is Loose (1974) - George C Scott vanity project about a family on a desert island and the mother and son incest that results. Yeah.

Diagnosis Murder (1975) - Made by HTV, and it shows. Christopher Lee headlines this not-a-horror-actually-a-boring-sub-Clemens-mystery.

The Kingfisher Caper (1975) - Boring Afrikaner diamond smuggling with Hayley Mills and David McCallum.

Cornbread, Earl and Me (1975) - It's basically an After School Special feature-length, with its story of a dead black basketball player, but Laurence Fishburne is unusually good for a child actor. You could tell he'd have a good career.

Crazy Mama (1976) - Amiable enough, with a decent cast. Basically Happy Days with gangster women.

All the President's Men (1976) - I suppose it's well-made, but it's too clinical for my liking.

Journey to the Beyond (1977) - John Carradine-narrated documentary.

Throw Out The Anchor (1977) - Interminable regional family-com with Richard Egan and Dina Merrill.

Leopard in the Snow (1977) - Mills and Boon attempt to start  a film franchise, with Susan Penhaligon travelling through (a Canadian facsimile of) the Lake District and falls in love with Keir Dullea. As much as slush as you expect.

Death Game (1977) - Shot in 1974, this has possibly-teenage lesbian psychos Sondra Locke (playing half her age) and Colleen Camp tormenting a dubbed Seymour Cassel.  Silly in that Mumsy, Nanny, Sonny and Girly way, with a Mockney theme song sung by a bunch of Americans trying to sound like Jack Wild.  Cassel's character is called George Manning, not to be confused with the fat English bloke from Glenroe. Set dressers include Bill Paxton (who was still a struggling semi-actor) and Sissy Spacek (already a name, but helping her husband Jack Fisk).

Outlaw Blues (1978) - Why am I watching this country and western crime movie with Peter Fonda? It was free.

Dark Eyes/Satan's Mistress (1980) - Britt Ekland, Lana Wood and Kabir Bedi and John Carradine star in a shitty consensual version of the Entity.

Health (1980) - Unreleased Altman dreadfulness. Glenda Jackson plays a character who Henry Gibson in drag convinces Carol Burnett is a transwoman by dressing up as another transwoman.

Target... Earth? (1980) - Victor Buono and a talking computer review Earth's history to see if it is worth saving, in a strange UFO documentary/drama hybrid. A discovery.

The Alchemist (1981) - Charles Band attempts to make a period horror, and it's undistinguished, has no period detail and Robert Ginty is out of place.

Student Bodies (1981) - Hard to say. Despite Michael Ritchie, its non-union status makes it feel rather amateur even in comparison to Wacko or Pandemonium.

Memed My Hawk (1984) - A film that once a slight running joke for me and a friend, mainly because of the ridiculous title. It is just as silly as the title.  I imagined it to be a kind of faux-Middle Eastern Kes, basically the Black Stallion Returns but with a hawk. But no, based on a classic Turkish novel, Memed is actually a Robin Hood-type bandit in turn of the century Turkey, played by a tanned Simon Dutton, the forgotten Saint. Peter Ustinov directs, produces, writes, narrates and stars. He doesn't attempt an accent, but then nobody does. Well, I think Eileen Way tries to sound foreign, as the wise old woman. Herbert Lom appears, sounding like himself. T.P. and Siobhan McKenna are unconvincing as Turks. Michael Gough is one of myriad RP-accented luvvies making no attempt to register as foreign, in his case as a carpet tycoon sheik. Dutton fades into the background. It's just an excuse for loads of British and Irish character actors to don brownface, go to Yugoslavia and ham it up. Michael Elphick gets the last shot as a Cockney in a Fez.

Broadway Danny Rose (1984) - I thought I'd enjoy bits, but I guess I don't get Woody. Though Nick Apollo Forte was a find.

Gremloids/Hyperspace (1984) - Earl Owensby's regional Star Wars parody. As slapdash as it sounds. Stars comic Chris Elliott and introduced Lord Buckethead to the world.

Code of Silence (1985) - Despite the likes of Dennis Farina, this is still a rote Chuck Norris vehicle.

Streetwalkin' (1985)- 25-year-old but convincingly teenage-looking Melissa Leo (unrecognisable  as the modern stalwart character actress she is today) helps make this Corman produced New York riposte to the variable teen-vigilante-hooker nonsense of Angel (1984) possibly a better film than the film it is imitating. Though Angel was helped by the likes of Dick Shawn and Rory Calhoun as LA eccentrics.

Ratboy (1986) - The film that killed Sondra Locke's career, produced by Clint and Malpaso. Whose idea was it to make a film about a vermin-child played by a middle-aged woman (Sharon Baird)? It's like making the Adventures of mutant Jimmy Krankie.

Dark Tower (1987) - Michael Moriarty, Jenny Agutter, Carol Lynley, Theodore Bikel, Kevin McCarthy fight an evil Spanish tower block, in Freddie Francis-helmed Spanish sludge.

Killing American Style (1991) - Oh God, a rape-revenge story with a bloke who looks like one of Boyzone on the Late Late, and a random Jim Brown. Dreadful.

Tuesday, 5 November 2019


Birds of Prey (1930 - b/w) - Quota quickie with C. Aubrey Smith.

Grand Hotel (1932 - b/w) - One of these films that because it started a  raft of cliche, is basically unable to be watched without irony.

Secret of the Loch (1934 - b.w) - Ealing/Basil Dean hokum, a comedy in Loch Ness, with a surprisingly effective blown-up iguana shot underwater,

The Loves of Joanna Godden (1948 - b/w) -Another identikit period vehicle for Googie Withers.

Ghost Ship (1952 - b/w) - Dermot Walsh and Hazel Court in another mundane maritime thriller. Lots of waiting around train stations.

Quatermass Xperiment (1955)/Quatermass 2 (1957) - Kill me. I prefer Pit and Conclusion.

Search for Bridey Murphy (1956) - Godawful Oirish reincarnation schlock.

Davy (1958) - MGM Ealing flop set in a Victorian music hall in the modern day. Harry Secombe. Introduces a young child actor named Peter Frampton, who is not the singer, but instead became like his father, Harry, an award-winning makeup artist. The last Ealing comedy. Blackface follies. Ron Randell has a lot of dye in his hair.

The Man who Wouldn't Talk (1958) - Anna Neagle, a non-American-accented yet supposedly American Anthony Quayle and Zsa Zsa Gabor star in an intriguing though average courtroom drama. Judge is John LeMesurier. Also features an American-accented Patrick Allen, which is weird, because with an American accent, he doesn't sound like Patrick Allen.

The Penthouse (1967) - Another grim psychodrama from Peter Collinson.

Smashing Time (1967) - Lurid, astonishing yet also hatefully vulgar, but definitely a record of London at the time. Lynn Redgrave's turn is almost too good. She is too much the grating Northern gal she is playing.

Las luchadoras vs el robot asesino (1969) - Rene Cardona directs this dire wrestling film only notable because it unofficially uses as its main baddies, the Cybernauts from the Avengers (Steed and Mrs. Peel Avengers, obviously, not the Marvel lot).

Tropic of Cancer (1969) - Forgettable Henry Miller adap with Rip Torn on a Parisian sex holiday. Sheila Steafel pops up somewhere.

Girl on a Motorcycle (1969) - psychedelic bollocks.

Slecna Golem (1972) - A Barrandov romcom about a robot lady.

Dragon Story (1974) - Bruce Li plays Lee in a tawdry biopic that shows Betty Ting Pei as a promiscuous bitch.
Bruce Lee's Deadly Kung Fu (1976) - Bruce Lee (Bruce Li) works in a Chinese restaurant and kicks arse with very terrible production values.
Bruce Lee: The Man, The Myth (1976) is another biopic starring Li, shot all over the world. It's shabby but ambitious.

Hot Potato (1975) - Jim Kelly is Black Belt Jones in the official Black Belt Jones II.

Won Ton Ton - the Dog that Saved Hollywood (1976) - It says Michael Winner directed this, but judging by the cast, style, even some of the crew (John "Bud" Cardos" on 2nd unit), I wouldn't be surprised if Al Adamson was involved.

Ebony, Ivory and Jade (-1976) - Colleen Camp, Sylvia Anderson (not THAT Sylvia Anderson) and Rosanne Katon in Filipino women-in-prison escapee Olympics schlock. Has a vaguely Scottish American/Britoid-accented Hong Kong News TV newsreader. Rewatched.

Stay Hungry (1976) - Typical New Hollywood dreary-whimsy from Bob Rafelson. Introducing Ahnult.

The Billion Dollar Fire (1976) - Terrible Romanian-Italian disaster movie starring Stuart Whitman, Woody Strode and Ray Milland.

American Tickler (1977) -Godawful Chuck Vincent anthology comedy.

Nurse Sherri (1978) - Carrie-like nurse movie with a demonic cartoon blob monster that looks like it's animated by Bob Godfrey. Yes, it's Al Adamson.

Straight Time (1978) - Dustin Hoffman does his schtick. New Hollywood boredom.

Sweater Girls (1978) - Terrible, horribly cheap, very 70s-looking sexploitation with an oddly catchy faux-doo wop song that sounds extremely 70s despite its 50s pretensions. The poisoned dwarf herself, Charlene Tilton pops up in a pre-Dallas bit at the end, that seems to be  a sequel hook.  And she literally looks like she's playing Lucy Ewing, shorts, hairstyle, everything. She's about as 50s as a Betamax.

Rock 'n' Roll High School (1979) - It's the film I imagined age 10, but it's quite obnoxiously in your face bar the music.  Plus every Ramones song has the same tune.

Home Movies (1979) - Self-indulgent student film education project staged by Brian De Palma about Keith Gordon fawning over Nancy Allen, while Kirk Douglas plays God.

Night Games (1980) - Here's an oddity. Roger Vadim directs an erotic thriller where his latest discovery, future Ferris Bueller's mom Cindy Pickett hallucinates a lesbian flapper nightmare in a Los Angeles that is clearly the Philippines, because Golden Harvest coproduced so they had to shoot in Asia. It feels extremely cheap and it looks ugly, but there's a John Barry soundtrack, which sounds like various other John Barry soundtracks, e.g. Frances or The Betsy, or Moonraker.

Serial (1980) - They tried to make Martin Mull a movie star, in this strange, not very funny satire. I watched it, because it has Christopher Lee when he was living in California, doing a rubbish American accent as a gay biker. It's weird hearing his voice trying to sound swishy, and say "ass". It's like seeing Prince Philip in a leather bar in Texas. It also feels like a riposte to TV's Soap.

Sahara (1983) - Some Arabs have Jewfros, because this is a Cannon film made in Israel. Others are just John Rhys-Davies. John Mills enlivens the proceedings as a Cambridge don named Cambridge, but another erotic film for the under-twelves with Brooke Shields.

Fantasy Mission Force (1983) - A cameo from Jackie Chan is only part of this strange, confused anachronistic WW2-ish mess.

Surf II (1984) - Some neat touches i.e. the fake-split-screen kitchen-set don't help me. This is another teen sex comedy that I find baffling and annoying.

The Adventures of Mark Twain (1985) - Will Vinton stop-motion animation known for its creepy transvestite devil. There is something uncanny valley about his bulbous-nosed, realistic-eyed animation. His style is undoubtedly unique and beautiful in its way, but there is something eerie about his style. As someone who was raised from birth on Aardman (during the period when they seemingly did every ad campaign), I find his wrinkly clay-people slightly creepy.

Maxie (1985) - very TV-ish romcom with Mandy Patinkin and a reincarnated Glenn Close.

Crawlspace (1986) - Tight, claustrophobic, tacky Klaus Kinski thriller.

House (1986) - bland, tv-esque, unfunny horror-fantasy.

Tough Guys (1986) - Despite Douglas and Lancaster's natural charm, this feels very blandly mid-80s. It even has a Kenny Rogers theme.

Stranded (1987) - Albinos with bad haircuts and spotty skin conditions kidnap Ione Skye and Mad Maureen O'Sullivan. Actually, a family drama staged like a horror.

Lady Beware (1987) - TV-movie like thriller with Diane Lane in Pittsburgh. Dreary.

Hollywood Shuffle (1987) - Helen Martin is fun, but it feels kind of bland, though it still looks several dozen times more expensive than it allegedly cost. There are a few good jokes, though. But it's very 1987.

Da (1988) - A nostalgic but stagey thing that is archetypal of every Irish film made between 1987 and 2004, i.e. non-stop tourist board-infused nostalgia for a time that never quite existed, despite Dalkey looking nice and being based on Hugh Leonard's life. Barnard Hughes is a bit stage-Oirish, but he looks like Dublin street poet/kids TV host Pat Ingoldsby. Martin Sheen's accent comes and goes. Very episodic, just a series of anecdotes.

Judgment in Berlin (1988) - Only Sean Penn's presence (because his da directed) would hint that it wasn't a TV movie.

Bad Dreams (1988) - Bland, unoriginal Elm Street-ish cult killer movie, despite Richard Lynch.

Les Patterson Saves the World (1987) - Tasteless, ugly (Hugh Keays-Byrne in nipple tassels), but being Barry Humphries, there is an odd vulgar charm. Joan Rivers is the US president. Abu Nivea is clearly some stock footage and some roughly assembled facades. The stuff with Dame Edna works far better. It's in the same cinematic universe as Howling III and Return of Captain Invincible, but it does too much to shock. It has a talking, trouser-suited, red-haired Madge Allsop. A rewatch.

Matewan (1987) - The kind of US indie filmmaking I find uninvolving. I prefer this kind of thing as documentary.

Deep Space (1988) - Terrible Fred Olen Ray schlock with an alien fighting Scottish-American kilt-cop Charles Napier.

I Hired A Contract Killer (1990)-  Jean Pierre Leaud, Margi Clarke and Ken Colley appear in a Scouse Aki Kaurismaki film. Also featuring Walter "yes, he was in Only Fools and Horses" Sparrow, Nicky Tesco of the punk grup the Members,  Tony Rohr, Miss Marple showrunner T.R. Bowen, Joe Strummer, It passes, doesn't do much.

Cheeky (2000) - Faux-British Tinto Brass porno-vid. It looks nice, but there's nothing of interest on screen beyond muff.

Hey Arnold! The Movie (2001)/The Wild Thornberrys Movie (2002)  - Both relatively cheery, fun adaptations of Nicktoons, though both stifled by trying to get a plot of ninety minutes.

US (2019) - I found the opening fun, and Lupita N'yongo is great, but I found the monsters a bit silly, though the twist is a killer, why "Red" speaks like Bane.
Also saw N'yongo in Little Monsters (2019) - a daft, amiable but useless and predictable zombie-comedy from Australia

In Fabric (2019) - A confused, arty mess, Are You Being Served as Euro-smut-art.

Watched after initial updating.

The Great Gabbo (1928 - b/w) - A musical interrupted by creepy interactions between Erich Von Stroheim and a young wooden Gay Byrne.

Becky Sharp (1935) - Notable only for being in early color, gets across the grating nature of the lead of Vanity Fair, but quite a stagey production.

The Man with the Golden Arm (1955 - b/w) - Sinatra having problems like he did off-screen.

Sapphire (1959) - A fine piece of work. A difficult story of a mixed-race girl who is murdered when her race is discovered captured well. An excellent depiction of the British-Caribbean community at the time. Great performance by Earl Cameron as her brother. Paul "Jekyll" Massie's angrily stiff.

Blind Corner (1963 - b/w) - Edgar Wallace-ish quickie thriller, highlight being an appearance from Eurovision vet Ronnie Carroll.

The Sadist (1963 - b/w) - Cruel and memorable despite being a slapdash Arch Hall Jr. vehicle.

Tomorrow at Ten (1963) - There's a bomb disguised as a golly. - which is a good excuse as any. William Hartnell is a guest star. Robert Shaw waits until Hollywood sees him.

The Violent Enemy (1967) - Dreary Oirish terrorism paddywhackery shot in Enniscorthy with Tom Bell, Susan Hampshire, Ed Begley Senior and the inevitable Noel Purcell.

Man of Violence (1969) - Typically grotty British crime-exploiter, directed by Pete Walker, notable for a bizarre plot turn which brings the action to an Arab state.
See also Walker's The Big Switch (1968).

The Only Way (1970) -Tepid Scandinavian wartime resistance drama with Martin Potter and Jane Seymour.

A Day at the Beach (1970) - Grotty experiment with Mark Burns and Beatie Edney as an uncle and niece who find a souvenir shop run by gays Peter Sellers and Graham Stark, camping it up. An ugly, obnoxious, strange failure.

Sweet Saviour (1971) - Troy Donahue in Manson schlokc, the highlight is a bunch of middle-aged hippies talking openly about cock.

Night of the Strangler (1972) - Nasty, bleak, badly-shot racially-charged exploitation with no strangling, starring Micky Dolenz.

The Man Called Noon (1973) - Undistinguished British western with Stephen Boyd, Richard Crenna and a nice faux-Morricone Bacalov soundtrack.
See also Hannie Caulder (1971) and David Frost's Richard Roundtree/faux-Indian mute Roy Thinnes vehicle Charley One Eye (1972).

The Blockhouse (1973) - Peter Sellers does serious, but he still does a Clouseau voice. Depressing, slightly too-well done story of a bunch of men (Sellers, Charles Aznavour, Peter Vaughan, Per Oscarsson, Jeremy Kemp) trapped in a bombed and collapsed-in storehouse in WW2.

The Second Coming of Suzanne (1974) - Voxpop-heavy Gene Barry/Sondra Locke/Richard Dreyfuss movie, part of the based-on-a-song boom. It is an impenetrable, dreary, psychedelic vanity project for Gene Barry funded by his fee from ITC's the Adventurer, based on and soundtracked by Leonard Cohen's titular song.

Adventure in Denmark (1973) - Weird attempt to crossbreed a Christina Lindberg Scando sex pic with chop-socky.

Point of Terror (1973) - Rubbishy psychodrama with Dyanne "Ilsa" Thorne and Tom Jones-ish vanity-driven club singer Peter Carpenter.

House of Terror (1973) - Gaudy, incompetent murder mystery that astoundingly got nominated for a Saturn award.

Malatesta's Carnival of Blood (1973) - Insanely shoestring, lacklustre wandering about a carnival with Herve Villechaize and a drag gypsy.

Barn of the Naked Dead/Nightmare Circus (1974) - Professional-looking Alan Rudolph nonsense with Andrew Prine, not much of a circus.

Abby (1974) - The Exorcist as blaxploitation as a William Castle-type film.  William Marshall looks good in a pith helmet, which is incongruous, and his son Terry Carter is about his own age. Marshall gives it gravitas, alongside Juanita Moore, but it feels very shoddy, but that is probably because the only available prints are fifth-generation bootlegs as Warner IIRC technically own this, even though it was AIP, because of the similarities with the Exorcist. Which is bull. Because here it is a twentysomething black woman.

Seizure (1974) - Early Oliver Stone exploitation weirdness with Jonathan Frid haunted by psychedelic imagery of Martine Beswicke and Herve Villechaize. Even Stone rightly thinks it's bobbins.

Mandingo (1975)/Drum (1976) - Apparently, my uncle Tommy was a big fan of these books. James Mason's funny Australian-Cajun-Yorkshire accent is the highlight of Mandingo, a sexploitation film on the scale of Gone with the Wind. That's the idea. It's American history with tits.  But in a way, that makes it more true. It depicts the full horror of slavery. Drum despite having the black cast returning feels like a cheaper movie. It feels like a Corman knockoff, but then again, New World vet Steve Carver was behind it. Instead of Susan George doing a Carry On-level accent, we have Rainbeaux Smith.

Winterhawk (1975) - Ambitious low-budget western, sweeping but kind of preachy. Soldier Blue for the family. With Leif Erickson, Elisha Cook, Woody Strode, Denver Pyle, LQ Jones...
One of Charles Pierce's TG4-friendly westerns. See also Greyeagle (1977). Which like Winterhawk is not the exploitation film you expect it to be. It also has faux-Native American Arthur English lookalike Iron Eyes Cody. It's basically a rehash of the Searchers played for romance, Lana Wood playing a young adult Debbie Edwards-type kidnapped because she's actually a half-breed.

Sasquatch The Legend of Bigfoot (1976) - Fake documentary complete with cast list, padded out by Grizzly Adams-ish western hijinks.

I Wonder Who's Killing Her Now (1976) - Terrible, wannabe-zany comedy terribleness with Bob Dishy, Bill Dana, Joanna Barnes, Severn Darden, Richard Libertini and Pat Morita and some racist caricatures.

Cozzilla (1977) - A psychedelic fan-film reedit of Godzilla recolorised and reedited by Luigi Cozzi.

Blood Brothers (1978) - Very televisual post-Scorsese family drama about New York Italians with Tony Lobianco, Paul Sorvino and Richard Gere.

Pacific Inferno (1978) - Dreary vehicle for Jim Brown in the Philippines.

Savage Weekend (1979) - Dreary, boring, sleazy Cannon upstate slasher.

The Ghost Dance (1980) - Amateurish but ambitious Native American slasher.

Wolf Devil Woman (1982) - Incompetent, bizarre wuxia from Ocean Shores, also known as Wolfen Ninja. Sadly no New York/Manchester hybrid accented supercops flinging throwing stars at she-wolves.

Oxford Blues (1983) - Typically obnoxious US teen sex-com with Rob Lowe that is notable because Michael Gough and Alan Howard get weird billing that pitches them after the various ten stars (and Aubrey Morris) but in massive blue letters together and not with everyone else, to show they are more prestigious. `

The Killing of Satan (1983) - Future Filipino senator Ramon Revilla fights a caped Satan in a quarry.

Bridge to Nowhere (1986) - Tried watching this teen Kiwi Deliverance with Bruno Lawrence as a mad bushman before. It's dull.

Nomads (1986) - Who thought Pierce Brosnan could do a French accent? He can't even do an Irish accent. Typical 80s video market-aimed music video-like dross by John McTiernan.

Jack's Back (1988) - Jack the Ripper copycat killer James Spader is pursued by cop James Spader. Very 80s cable filler. I.e. most of it is there to be fast-forwarded.

Zits (1988) - Plain kidvid about a Goonies-ish band of kids involved in KGB espionage.

I bought A Vampire Motorcycle (1990) - Neil Morrissey plagiarises Brain Damage. If Frank Henenlotter directed an episode of Boon.

Catholics (-1973) - Ultimately unsuccessful Irish HTV religious dystopia.

The Dain Curse (-1978) - Even in three hour cut down form, this Dashiell Hammett miniseries with James Coburn and lots of fake Britoid accents feels overstretched.

Rainy Day Woman (-1984) - Rustic Play for Today that still can't get beyond the rural BBC perimeters despite supernatural ambition.

Westinghouse Studio One - The Rabbit and A Bolt of Lightning, on crappy watermarked Alpha Video prints. Which negates any quality. Everything sounds and looks like dinner theatre witnessed from a distance.

Seen on ok.ru

American Madness (1932 - b/w) - I don't think 30s America appeals to me.

Great Expectations (1934 - b/w) - Tacky, very American, almost Huck Finn-like depiction of Victorian Britain on the Universal lot. Valerie Hobson and Francis L. Sullivan appear in a premonition of Lean.

No Orchids for Miss Blandish (1948 - b/w) -A silly faux-American gangster epic with musical sequences.

Svengali (1954) - Oddly Hammeresque, but pre-Hammer. Hildegarde Neff seems too hard-faced, too world-weary for innocent Trilby.

Gorath (1963) - Another Toho rehash of a disaster.

Dr. Crippen (1963 - b/w) - Rather staid perioder, with a cheery period tone against the grim story. Pleasence doesn't sound American.

Father Goose (1964) - Overlong, sub-Disney thing about Cary Grant, Leslie Caron and some posh schoolgirls.

Hotel Paradiso (1966) - Annoying farce with Alec Guinness and a wasted cast wandering around an artificial Paris doing "eccentric" performances.

The Big Silence (1968) - The most pessimistic, nihilistic but rather beautiful western made. Great Morricone soundtrack.

The Cats (1968) - Alias the Bastards. A Giuliano Gemma-Klaus Kinski spaghetti western set in the present.

Mrs. Brown You've Got A Lovely Daughter (1968) - Oh Jesus, Herman's Hermits go around Manchester with a greyhound. Cloying, barking musical that is an ode to swinging Manchester.

Alex in Wonderland (1970) - Self-indulgent, boring art by Paul Mazursky about a brilliant arty filmmaker played by Donald Sutherland. Twaddle.

The Weekend Murders (1970) - Strange faux almost-British Italian comedy whodunnit, not a typical giallo, but something resembling the drama bits from Jon Pertwee's Whodunnit (created by Lance Percival,) or the Richard Madeley Cluedo show, with a few British character faces including Lance Percival and the otherwise dubbed Chris "Eric Pollard from Emmerdale" Chittell, Ballard Berkeley and Richard Caldicot plus various Europeans trying to pass themselves off as English. Gastone Moschin is basically Colin Welland. Like a lot of continental thrillers set in Britain, it actually makes the effort to have a black character in the mix. The old dowager character is very unconvincingly aged. It is a mess, going from silly Italian comedy to gore-strewn, voyeuristic stuff more common in Italian horror. Characters keep pretending to be bloodily eviscerated. The ending plays a potentially bleak, nihilistic conclusion for Abbott and Costello-ish jazzy guitar-soundtracked laughs.

Horror of the Blood Monsters (1970) - A potentially interesting melange of pulp imagery done for nothing with no enthusiasm and lots of stock footage, badly recolored. John Carradine tries, but this is another Al Adamson mass of padding.

The Cat O'Nine Tails (1971) - Early Argento, nice score, but very contrived. Basically a crime film with giallo/krimi overtones. Not quite my thing.

The Strange Vice of Mrs. Wardh (1971) - It's a load of nonsense, being a giallo. Well-photographed nonsense, but still utterly ridiculous.

Hell's Bloody Devils (1972?) - Typical Al Adamson melting pot of unfinished nonsense.  Spies, bikers and Brod Crawford c.his appearance on the Late Late.

Lepke (1974) - Tony Curtis plays a Jewish gangster in this pre-Cannon Menahem Golan film. Nothing special, feels slightly above Roger Corman's similar gangster schlock. The period settings look comparatively lush. Features former JFK impersonator Vaughn Meader as Walter Winchell, and Britain's finest thesp, Clement von Franckenstein as Bugsy Siegel.

The Human Factor (1975) - A rather uneventful Italian Eurocrime, sponsored by Mattesson's Sausages (I'm not making this up) starring George Kennedy as an early internet pioneer who is targeted and goes Bronson after his family (including Danny Huston) are murdered. With John Mills, Barry Sullivan, Raf Vallone, Rita Tushingham, and Shane Rimmer. A nice Morricone soundtrack.

The Magician of Lublin (1979) - Terrible Golan-Globus Jewish period drama with Alan Arkin, Shelley Winters, Louise Fletcher, Valerie Perrine and Lou Jacobi going oh-vey-the-top as Kate Bush sings. Arkin thinks he can fly.

Five Days One Summer (1982) - Connery does incest in a weirdly sexless film, going more Merchant-Ivory than Just Jaecken. Dreary. Yes, I overuse that term, but this is dreary, because it is about mountaineering.

Rewatched Yves Montand in Le Menace. Great truck-stunt at the end.

Friday, 18 October 2019


The 49th Parallel (1941 - b/w) - Michael Powell's the Beachcombers Went Day The Well?

Give Us This Day (1950) - Edward Dmytryk noirish drama about Italian-Americans. Except it was made in the UK, hence Sam Wanamaker as the lead, but it looks convincing. It looks almost indistuinguishable from a kind of Hollywood New York milieu. However, Sid James appears. Imagine if Sid was in Mean Streets. It's that odd. It has a great quicksand death. Also featuring Bonar Colleano, George Pastell, Rosalie Crutchley, and young Robert Rietty.

Chinatown At Midnight (1949-  b/w) - Dull Sam Katzman crime procedural with Hurd Hatfield.

Experiment Alcatraz (1950 - b/w) - Dull Prison film.

The Killer that Stalked New York (1950 - b/w) - Atmsopheric but confusing little noir.

Johnny One Eye (1950 - b/w) - Somewhat schmaltzy Runyon noir with Pat O'Brien.

Double Deal (1950 - b/w) - b-melodrama which ends with Maura Windsor laughing as oil rains on her.

The Capture (1950) - A rare singing cowboy film done seriously, with Lew Ayres and Teresa Wright. Directed by John Sturges. Does a Shyamalan-type twist fifteen minutes in, as we realise this is also a noir set in the present./

Mary Ryan, Detective (1950 - b/w) - Boilerplate light mystery with Marsha Hunt.

When Willie Comes Marching Home (1950 - b/w) - Forgotten, and even for the time dated WW2 morale booster with Dan Dailey being goofy in the war. Directed by John Ford.

Are We Men or Corporals (1955) - Baffling, Wisdomesque comedy starring Toto.

Dublin Nightmare (1958 - b/w) - William Sylvester is the inevitable transatlantic lead in  this partly Irish shot suspenser which is basically like every other B-film, but David Kelly is in it in his twenties, still looking like David Kelly.

Romulus and the Sabines (1961) - A typical Italian peplum, but with  adecent cast. Has Two Saints in Jean Marais and yes, Roger Moore, who basically is just Roger Moore. And yes, thankfully, he dubs himself as Romulus.

Borman (1966) - Aka NaziSS. Obscure techno-Nazism that is actually a very boring bit of Eurospy.

Any Gun Can Play (1967) - Never noticed the resemblance before between Gilbert Roland and Richard Johnson. There are some nice Bava-esque tableaux from Enzo G. Castellari, who manages to make it decent enough though a shaggy production, despite Edd "Kookie" Byrnes' US-pleasing participation.

Today We Kill, Tomorrow We Die (1968) - Written by Dario Argento, allegedly starring Troy McClure if you believe the Simpsons, and starring Bud Spencer and Kurosawa favourite Tatsuya Nakadai. But this isn't one of those Red Sun-type East meets West affairs. Nakadai plays a Mexican, quite convincingly. Yes, he wields a sword, but that's just because he was excellent at swordplay.

Johnny Hamlet (1968) - Another Castellari western. A spooky, horror-tinged take on Hamlet. Wonderfully photographed, but doesn't go far enough into the horror.

A Minute To Pray A Second To Die (1968) - Robert Ryan, Alex Cord and Arthur Kennedy in a rote spaghetti western.

The First Time (1969) - The first modern teen sex comedy. But it is basically a goofy Disney-ish thing with an added brothel and Jacqueline Bisset.
Secrets (1971) - A pervy, arty, nothingy London-set sexy drama with Bisset and Robert Powell.

They Paid with Bullets (1969) - Terrible gangster schlock with Peter Lee Lawrence, basically a spaghetti western with 30s cars and pinstripe suits and fedoras, to simulate Chicago.
Long Arm of the Godfather (1972) - Another Lee Lawrence gangster blandarama, though some nice Arab foot-chase scenes and Adolfo Celi try to make it something.

Borsalino (1970) - period gangster shenanigans with Delon and Belmondo.
The sequel, Borsalino and Co (1974) has Delon trying to make up for the death of his pal, but it's rather uninvolving.

Popsy Pop (1971) - Flimsy Cannon-distributed Italian tropical romantic crime comedy starring Claudia Cardinale, Stanley Baker and Henri Charriere, Papillon himself.

Fortune and Men's Eyes (1971) - Sleazy, cheesy gay prison romper.

Dirtymouth (1971) - Sleazy, tit-heavy softcore that is allegedly a biopic of Lenny Bruce.

The Unholy Four (1971) - Leonard Mann and Woody Strode in an average Italian western that feels like it is from the 50s.

Making It (1971) - Forgettable teen dramedy with Kristoffer "Cluedo" Tabori.

Such Good Friends (1971) - Dreary, pervy romance-comedy with Dyan Cannon.

Crime Boss (1972) - Predictable Eurocrime with Television Savalas.

Redneck (1973) - More Telly Eurocrime. Here, he and Franco Nero kidnap Mark Lester, and it becomes a bit NAMBLA.

I Will Walk Like a Crazy Horse (1973) - Sub-Jodorowsky surrealist mess from Fernando Arrabal.

Cannibal Girls (1973) - Disappointingly tonally all over (maybe the jokes work), and that's a shame because Eugene Levy and Andrea Martin are geniuses. And SCTV is wonderful. This isn't. This needed Count Floyd, rather than Tom Baker-alike Ronald Ulrich. It doesn't feel like a spoof, but a genuine trashy serious horror. 

Shoot it Black, Shoot it Blue (1973) - Dreary agitprop crime drama with Michael Moriarty.

The  Night Porter (1974) - Italian kink-nonsense with a budget. Dirk Bogarde tries to look like he enjoys making out with Charlotte Rampling, but he looks forced, bless him.

La femme aux bottes rouges (1974) - Juan Bunuel artsy-fartsy with Deneuve and Rey.

Oz (1976) - Camp but not very fun Australian musical version of the Wizard of Oz, with Bruce Spence.

The FJ Holden (1977) - Forgettable Aussie teen-sexcom/car chaser with Foster's-drinking teens in flannel shirts and Maggie "The Freak" Kirkpatrick.

Love and the Midnight Auto Supply (1977) - Cut-and-paste hicksploitaton I-suppose-it's-a-comedy with Michael Parks in a hat bigger than his head and Linda Cristal and various ex-B cowboys.

My Boys are Good Boys (1977) - Ski-masks and skinheads in this amateurish juvenile crime film (one of the youths is the dead spit of Roland Browning from Grange Hill) with Ida Lupino, Lloyd Nolan and David Doyle as the adult "stars". A bid for cromulence from softcore pornocrats Peter Perry and Bethel Buckalew.

Mirrors (1978) - Dreary, confused, post-Cuckoo's Nest thriler with Kitty Winn.

Fast Charlie - the Moonbeam Rider (1979) - Confused, tedious, TV-movie like post-western with David Carradine. Rather anachronistic hicksploitation feel, considering it is set in WW1.

California Dreaming (1979) - AIP try to do a Beach Party film for the post-American Graffiti/Big Wednesday generation. So, it's serious, but it feels like an afterschool special. 

Manaos (1979) - RIdiculous Italian-Mexican Amazon plantation drama that ends with Fabio Testi and some interchangeable Mexican hunk fighting in a garden shed that's going over a waterfall.

Prom Night (1980) - It's actually a weak, undistinguished, bland little slasher. No excitement. The dance scenes are padding. 
Prom Night II - Hello, Mary Lou (1987) - Almost a horror version of 3 O'Clock High. 
Prom Night  III - The Last Kiss (1990) - Kind of fun and demented in a 90s kids show way.

Chanel Solitaire (1981) - Turgid Europudding biopic with Marie France Pisier, plus Timothy Dalton, Rutger Hauer and Karen Black.

Kiss Daddy Goodbye (1981) - Forgettable killer-twin horror with Fabian. Like an amateur fan-film of the Witch Mountain films gone wrong.

Silence of the North (1981) - Another turn-of-the-century Canadian melodrama in the North, freezes you while watching it.

Love and Money (1982) - Pervy Central American melodrama - directed by sleazy gobshite James Toback and starring sleazy gobshites Ray Sharkey and Klaus Kinski. A sleazy gobshite's Winter Kills.
Toback's Exposed (1983)  is almost a twin. It's a blandly glossy international melodrama-thriller where even good actors barely register on screen, because he's pawing his dirty camera-fists on Nastassja Kinski.

A Time to Die (1982) - Dreary Mafia-infused Nazi story made in the Netherlands by Matt Cimber. Rex Harrison luckily suffers in this cheap exploiter, also with Raf Vallone, Edward Albert and Rod Taylor. Albert is chased by an assassin, while laughing. Freeze frame. End credits.

Partners (1982) - Horrible comedy version of Cruising. John Hurt is the queer who has to die at the end. Ryan O'Neal his straight partner.

The Verdict (1982) - Not my thing, but it is undoubtedly a great film of its type. It feels very Canadian, being shot in Toronto, and Milo O'Shea actually rocks his terrible Joe Dolan-esque haircut.

Lies (1983) - Ann "Miss Amity" Dusenberry stars in a sub-DePalma though relatively stylish erotic thriller about a B-movie actress by the Wheat boys who wrote Pitch Black and directed one of the Ewok films.

Antarctica (1983) - Basically a  documentary travelogue with added Ken Takarura  and Tripitaka.

The Devil's Gift (1983) - Amateurish unofficial adaptation of a Stephen King story. 

Flashpoint (1984) - Another southern-fried film with another member of the cast of the High Chapparal. Here, it's Mark Slade, but Kris Kristofferson's the star. Lots of bare-chested shots of Big Kris here, that would probably make even my LGBT-allergic dad go stiff, plus lots of character actors - Rip Torn,Kevin Conway, Kurtwood Smart as a corporate asshole... But it's nothing I haven't seen before. And plus they don't even have Kris singing the theme song. Made by HBO. So the HBO ident pops up, which sadly never happened with any of the films made by Yorkshire or Granada (ITC is a different matter, as the ITC ident(s) was different to ATV, and did appear).

Bad Manners (1984) - A Disney film that Disney got cold feet so they sold it to Corman. It's basically the Warriors meets the Red Hand Gang. 

Heart of the Stag (1984) - tonally confused, sweetly-soundtracked NZ drama with the inevitable Bruno Lawrence.

Finders Keepers (1984) - Unfunny sub-Mad Mad Madness directed by Richard Lester on the same locations as Superman III, but without any British character talent.

Beyond Reason (1985) - More Telly Savalas, this time a tiresome mental health-themed vanity project made in 1977.

Pizza Connection (1985) - Basically a spinoff from RAI-TV's the Octopus, this smeary NTSC-glazed Eurocrime nasty feels like a TV show. By Damiano Damiani - for Cannon.

Latino (1985) - The lost Lucasfilm. Robert Beltran plays a Vietnam War vet named Eddie Guerrero (not the wrestler) who is sent to Nicaragua  to help train Contras fight the Sandinistas. Not my thing, but somewhat powerful. It packs a punch.

Static (1985) - Bland, arty religious-infused art-nonsense.

Down by Law (1986 - B/W) - I don't get Jarmusch.

Native Son (1986) - Decent enough American Playhouse, but casting Oprah as the mother of someone her age confuses.

Pirates (1986) - Polanski does Tai-Pan with jokes. Weird to see Damien Thomas, Richard Pearson and Tomorrow People baddie-turned-Nollywood legend Olu Jacobs getting starring billing, while Roy Kinnear, David Kelly, Bill Fraser and Ferdy Mayne (who has a large role) are "and", and Michael Elphick, Anthony Dawson, Daniel Emilfork, Cardew the Cad and Ian Dury (at the time probably the second most famous person in the film next to Walter Matthau and maybe Kinnear) only get end credits. It doesn't work. It feels too expensive to work. Polanski is trying to be Terry Gilliam, down to a cast of British character stalwarts. It is very clearly made by the same man who made the Fearless Vampire Killers. In fact, I'm surprised it was not called the Fearless Sea Scourges or something. It has the same character dynamics and all. And poor Charlotte Lewis. It feels very sleazy when she pops up.

Django Strikes Again (1987) - Interestingly assembled steampunk Rambo-alike with Franco Nero in his old role, now known as Ignatius (Ignatius!),  going up the Amazon. Bizarrely made by Berlusconi and Reteitalia to rival Rai's similarly genre-muddled Tex and the Lord of the Deep (1985 - which has Giuliano Gemma, a Sallah-ish fezzed bloke and lots of grey desert). God bless Italian TV.

Playing Away (1987) - Film4 directed by Horace Ové, as the likes of Norman Beaton, Ramjohn Holder, Gary Beadle, Stefan Kalipha and Joseph Marcell play an all-black Brixton cricket team who find themselves playing in a lilywhite veddy English village.

Funland (1987) - Basically about a Ronald McDonald type restaging the film Rollercoaster at William Windom's amusement park played by Six Flags. A jokey but uncinematically-shot and characterless thing.

Chameleon Street (1989) - Agitprop political arthouse-satire about race. 

The Indian Runner (1990) - Dreary Springsteen translated to film. And it has Bronson in it. 

Tatie Danielle (1990) - Annoyingly quirky French comdram. 

Bugsy (1991) - Why did I even watch this sleazy Warren Beatty vanity crime-biopic?

29th Street (1991) - Anthony Lapaglia plays Frank Pesce, the bloke who won the lotto and starred in Killer Fish. Very TVM.

The Pope Must Die (1991) - A character is called Joe Don Dante. paul Bartel appears. Silly, nonsensical, but it is from the Comic Strip.

Poison (1991) - Insufferable though somewhat nicely visual queer magic realism anthology that is a random shuffle of three stories, by Todd Haynes. 

A Midnight Clear (1992) - Gary Sinise an a bunch of soldiers freeze in fake-France.

Poor White Trash (1957 - b/w) - Peter Graves in another forgettable routine Southern fried potboiler melodrama.

Funny Things Happen Down Under (1965) - CFF-ish featurette from Roger Mirams, spun off from TV series the Adventures of the Terrible Ten, featuring a young Olivia Newton-John when she actually was a teenager.

Island of Crime (1968) - Rotten Charlotte Rampling Euro-suspenser.

Assignment Skybolt (1968) - Greek Eurospy awfulness by poverty row vet Gregg Tallas.

The 5th Day of Peace (1970) - The likes of Richard Johnson, Franco Nero, Bud Spencer and T.P. McKenna prop up another Eastern Bloc-Western coproduced war movie that lasts two hours and never registers.

Heavy Traffic (1973) - Horrible, pervy, artsy live-action/animation nonsense, art-porn cartooniness from Bakshi.

Where the Red Fern Grows (1974) - Waltonesque rural Americana with Osmonds/Andy Williams soundtrack. Basically cinematic Branson, Missouri.

It Seemed Like A Good Idea at the Time (1975) - Godawful Canadian comedy. I did not realise that Find the Lady was a sequel to this. That had Dick Emery, this has Anthony Newley. John Candy and Lawrence Dane appear as their detective characters. And John Candy doesn't register in this. This is just before Second City TV, and it's also where you see this thing that angers me. John Candy was misued in cinema. SCTV portrays that he was a versatile, funny-boned character actor, and people didn't cop onto this until it was too late.

Gemini Affair (1975) - Shoddy Matt Cimber-directed lesbian melodrama with Marta "Judy from Lost in Space" Kristen.

The Con Artists (1976) - Sergio Corbucci manages to make this substandard Italian The Sting imitation with Anthony Quinn, Capucine, Adriano Celentano and Corinne Clery actually look quite expensive.

Chatterbox (1977) - Silly,  idiotic AIP musical about Candice Rialson's talking vagina.

Tanya's Island (1980) - Vanity in arty, sophisticated drama about bestiality on a desert island, with a ridiculous-looking baboon thing.

The Little Dragons (1980)  - Curtis Hansen-directed kung fu exploitation, roughly done - for kids. Odd to see Charles Lane being top-billed.

Charley Bravo (1980) - Silly French Nam movie.

The Greenstone (1980) - Strange though unique 38-minute featurette narrated by Orson Welles where a kid encounters all kinds of fantasy imagery. Well-done. Was this a demo for a feature?

Firebird 2015 AD (1981) - Doug McClure and Darren McGavin in a cold though pacey Canadian B-movie racing film.

Reborn (1981) - Forgettable religious nonsense from Spain with Dennis Hopper.

Signe Furax (1981) - Baffling, weird Fantomas/Pink Panther knockoff with Coluche, Mylene Demongeot and Daniel Gelin, a brass laser-chicken and a Teletext Martian.

The Plains of Heaven (1982) - Experimental drama from Australia where the dad from Round the Twist and Australian Mr. Mash from Are You Being Served? Down Under watch Welsh news bulletins in a satellite station.

Tuxedo Warrior (1982) - Biopic of Cliff Twemlow, with Blake's 7 guest stars John Wyman and Carol Royle the leads. However, Big Cliff wasn't happy. No longer about a bouncer/Granada extra/stock music composer in Manchester, it's played as a would-be epic, and the location moved to Zimbabwe. It's rubbish.

Midnite Spares (1983) - Subpar Aussie racing film with once-ubiquitous Anglo-Australian DJ Jono Coleman.

Bullamakanka (1983) - Aussie cross between the Boys in Blue and the Cars that Ate Paris, featuring Angry Anderson and Rose Tattoo, Australian Savile-alike Molly Meldrum, John Farnham, and Frank Thring.

Abwarts (1984) - Derrick-like German thriller in a lift.

Treasure - In Search of the Golden Horse (1984) - Kit Williams-influenced experimental interactive movie with an old-looking little girl that nonetheless is actually kind of visually beautiful, almost a proto-Myst.

Heaven Help Us (1985) - Cheesy, bland, almost Canadian story about Catholic schoolboys. Donald Sutherland is very Tom Baker.

Death in the Shadows (1985) - Continental Video-released dreary Dutch teen-thriller.

Istanbul (1985) - Dreary Dutch thriller with Brad Dourif that meanders into another plot.

The Climb (1986) - Uninvolving Canadian Himalayan mountaineering saga, apparently a BBC coproduction.

Man on Fire (1986) - Yes, this was remade. This has Scott Glenn minding the girl. Jonathan Pryce and Brooke Adams pop up. It's a typical 80s glossy but not-exciting Eurocrime. Somehow, our Scott can imitate his ward's voice.

The Rosary Murders (1987) - Cold, unfeeling, though watchable enough Donald Sutherland mystery. It feels Canadian, but it is shot and set  in Detroit.

Apprentice to Murder (1988) - PBS-like, lush but empty true crime drama set in the US, shot in Scandinavia, with Donald Sutherland again.

A Night At The Magic Castle (1988) - Empty Arte Johnson-starring kidvid/magic show/fantasy.

Mr. North (1988) - Danny Huston-directed, sweetly bland period fantasy-comedy.

Incident at Raven's Gate (1988) - Stylish but uninvolving Australian alien-invasion movie.

Fast Food (1989) - Jim Varney plays a cowboy-hatted fast food magnate in this nothingy sex-lite comedy.

Quicker than the Eyes (1989) -  Garish but unadventurous magician-espionage saga with Ben Gazzara.

Sunday, 6 October 2019


Movie Crazy (1932 - b/w) - I've tried Harold Lloyd before, and I don't get his persona, I am afraid.

Laughing at Life (1933 - b/w) - Another bare Victor McLaglen-starring lump of exotica.

The Whole Town's Talking (1935 - b/w) - Rote John Ford-directed screwball.

The Princess Comes Across (1936 - b/w) - Another wacky, annoying screwball comedy with Carole Lombard. On a ship.

The Squeaker (1937) - Repetitive Edgar Wallace adap with Edmund Lowe, Ann Todd, Robert Newton and a young Alastair Sim (who looks exactly as he would twenty years later). There's a TARDIS.

King of Alcatraz (1938 - b/w) - A typical crime quickie with a great cast. Lloyd Nolan, J. Carroll Naish, Robert Preston, Anthony Quinn...

Battle of Broadway (1938 - b/w) - Another "wacky" stagey screwball-"comedy" with Victor McLaglen. See also Hot Pepper (1933 - b/w).

Unmarried (1939 - b/w) - Another alleged comedy that didn't do anything for me. Donald O'Connor annoys me.

Tobacco Road (1941 - b/w) - Sentimental John Ford tosh, does to southern fried yokels what How Green was my Valley did to the fake-Welsh.

Among the Living (1941 - b/w) - Dreary gothic noir with Albert Dekker, Susan Hayward, Harry Carey and a then-sane Frances Farmer.

Black Dragons (1942) - Typical wartime hamminess with Lugosi.

San Diego I Love You (1944 - b/w) - Forgettable Universal screwballer with Buster Keaton cameo.

Dangerous Partners (1945 - b/w) - Watched in  a dreadful colourised print that made it look like Eddie Yeats' "colour TV device" in Coronation Street. Typical MGM B-noir.

Boomerang (1947 - b/w) - Another noir with Dana Andrews that unless you like noir, you get deja vu.

Deep Waters (1948 - b/w) - Atmospheric but relatively plain Dana Andrews-Dean Stockwell bonding drama.

Criss Cross (1949 - b/w) - Realised noir is too grim for me. This Burt Lancaster vehicle is particularly nihilistic.

Outpost in Morocco (1949 - b/w) - Typical legion nonsense with George Raft.

The Pirates of Capri (1949 - b/w) - Typical Italian swashbuckler with Louis Hayward, the only novelty being that it was made in 1949.

The Mudlark (1950 - b/w) - Standard Victorian British drama.

The Man Who Cheated Himself (1950 - b/w) - Lee J. Cobb noir. Again, why am I watching this?

The White Tower (1950) - Ok.ru. Uneasy mix of romantic melodrama and mountaineering.

Love That Brute (1950 - b/w) - Paul Douglas and Cesar Romero in thick-eared inner city comedy.

The 13th Letter (1951  - b/w) - Hoary Canadian hospital melodrama with Michael Rennie.

Bird of Paradise (1951) - Silly Hawaiian adventure with lots of hair dye covering Jeff Chandler's top head.

St. Benny the Dip (1951 - b/w) - Forgettable Edgar Ulmer/Danziger's comedy with Roland Young and Lionel Stander and Freddie Bartholemew in his last role.

The Sword of Monte Cristo (1951) - Interchageable cheapo swashbuckler.

14 Hours (1951 -b/w) - Great performance from Richard Basehart, but it's a half-hour concept.
See also He Walked by Night (1948 - b/w).

I'd Climb the Highest Mountain (1951) - Forgettable Appalachian romance with Susan Hayward.

Anything Can Happen (1952 - b/w) - Gormless Jose Ferrer-as-a-comedy-Georgian-immigrant vehicle.

Hoodlum Empire (1952 - B/W) - Ambitious Republic gangster saga, but the cardboard skylines in office scenes and Brian Donlevy as star reveal its Poverty Row roots. But it does have some expressionist WW2 flashbacks.

City that Never Sleeps (1953 - b/w) - Generic Republic noir done relatively well.

Sangaree (1953) - Nicely colourful but sluggish Fernando Lamas vehicle for Pine-Thomas.

Johnny Dark (1954) - I don't like racing pictures, even if they have Tony Curtis.

World for Ransom (1954 - b/w) - Dreary Robert Aldrich-directed oriental TV spinoff with Dan Duryea. Ok.ru

Hell's Island (1955) - Presumed I'd seen this John Payne/Pine-Thomas redo of the Maltese Falcon in tropical climes before. Usual hokum but nice turn from Francis L. Sullivan as the Greenstreet figure.

Lafayette Escadrille (1957 - b/w) - Nothingy Troy Donahue/David Janssen faux-French WW1 aviation saga. Also with Will Hutchins, Brett Halsey, Tom Laughlin and some young fella called Clint Eastwood. Directed by William Wellman, and featuring himself as a character, played by  his son.
See also Darby's Rangers (1958 - b/w), a similar WW2 vehicle with James Garner and the same female lead, Etchika Choreau. A typical rote gung-ho American military thing, but with the difference it is set in a backlot Scotland. Ok.ru.

Kelly and Me (1957) - Universal Van Johnson romantic comedy about a dog. Average.

Kiss Them for Me (1957) - Dreary romance, not comic at all, very dramatic, with Cary Grant.

Rally 'Round the Flag, Boys (1958) - Paul Newman in a middling juvenile military-com.

A Certain Smile (1958)/Interlude (1957) - Interchangeable continental romances with Rossano Brazzi.

Paris Holiday (1958) - Typical Bob Hope travelogue, with added Fernandel on a helicopter.

The Rough and the Smooth (1959 - b/w) - Draughty German-British erotic drama with Nadja Tiller, Tony Britton (making money to feed baby Fern), and William Bendix. Bland.

The Nights of Lucrezia Borgia (1959) - Very cheesy Italian swashbuckler with unexpected sadism including a Pit and the Pendulum scene pre-Corman.

Why Must I Die (1960) - grotty AIP noir where Terry Moore restages I Want to Live!

Goliath and the Dragon (1960) - Typical AIP-sponsored peplum tedium, peppered up by a cool dragon.

Woman of Straw (1964) - tiresome melodrama with Sean Connery and Gina Lollobrigida. Transatlantic tripe. Ralph Richardson barks racist orders to Johnny Sekka in an armchair-styled wheelchair.

Father Frost (1965) - A relatively unmemorable Soviet fairytale, released by Avco Embassy.

Ambush Bay (1966) - Slightly-better-than-yer-average-Filipino-shot-studio-programmer with Hugh O'Brian and Mickey Rooney fighting the Japanese.

Riot on Sunset Strip (1967) - Tv movie-like sub-Corman non-hip  juvenile delinquency from Sam Katzman. An old man's idea of juvenile debauchery.

Killers Three (1968) - Dreary AIP rural suspense, post-Bonnie and Clyde, with Merle Haggard singing.

The Wild Racers (1968) -  Fabian and Mimsy Farmer in a would-be arty, pretentious European racing schlock from AIP. It's an artier European version of Fabian's previous racing film, Thunder Alley (1967). I always find it interesting that AIP clearly were trying to make Judy Cornwell a star.  She's third billed here as the secondary love interest, above the likes of Talia Shire, then Tally Coppola, Dick Miller and Ron Gans. Did she get offers from Hollywood but turned them down and ended up  finding her niche in sitcom? She did this, Rocket to the Moon and Wuthering Heights, plus the non-AIP but Corman-produced Paddy. Here, she's a kind of dippy flower-child, a kind of southern version of Daisy from Keeping Up Appearances if she had never met Onslow, but also that stereotype of British girls Americans tried to peddle.

Who's Minding the Mint (1968) - Silly but oddly likeable. And Victor Buono's fun (realised I'm almost his age - whoa). Ok.rued.

Lady Hamilton (1968) - Slapdash but ornate yet meaningless historical biopic, made in Italy, with John Mills and Richard Johnson there to convince you it might be British, but it's definitely Eurogrot.

Mafia (1968)  - Turgid, overlong desert-based crime saga with an all-star cast.

The Price of Power (1969) - An interesting idea - a post-JFk take on the assassination of President Garfield, and a great Luis Bacalov theme, but the trouble is the execution. Plus Van Johnson as the President is dubbed by someone else, not to mention that his turn as a clean-shaven idealist (the real James Garfield was bearded) is so Kennedy it hurts. And Dallas in 1881 was already a thriving metropolis, rather than the typical Almerian desert toytown as seen here.

Whirlpool (1970) - Desperate, sleazy Jose Larraz Brit-giallo.

The Confession (1970) - Good for what it is, excellently made. It is Costa-Gavras, and I'm kind of left cold by his stuff. It's too clinical. Still, Montand and Signoret do good.

Goin' Down The Road (1970) - A landmark in Canadian cinema, but cold, dreary, idiotic and oh so wonderfully taken apart by the SCTV gang as Yonge Street.

The only Game in Town (1970) - Set in Vegas but made in France, this is self-indulgent Liz Taylor claptrap.

A Bullet for Pretty Boy (1970) - Larry Buchanan's most decent film, but still a pretty slapdash gangster film.

WUSA (1970) - Well-made Paul Newman politica, but it's not really the sort of thing I'd watch for fun.

Some of my Best Friends Are (1971) - AIP gay swishiness.

What Became of Jack and Jill (1971) Grim, unlikeable, goes-too-far psycho-thriller with Paul Nicholas as a thoroughly horrible killer. Works too well.

Rivals (1972) - Pervy incest drama with Joan Hackett being the subject of obsessive affection by her son.

Thirty Dangerous Seconds (1972) - Suspense-free regional thriller with Robert Lansing, long believed lost.

Dirty Little Billy (1972) - Sleazy, dirty, nihilistic western per the period. Michael J. Pollard oddly convincing as a pubescent Billy the Kid, despite being thirty-three.

Journey Through Rosebud (1972) - Dreary Indian mysticism with Robert Forster trying to channel Burt Reynolds as a Native American.

Payday (1973) - Rip Torn is good as a country singer but I don't care about country singers.

Bucktown (1975) - A beige blaxploitation film, despite a fine cast. See also Sheba, Baby (1975).

Murph the Surf (1975) - Dreary sub-TV Robert Conrad vehicle, lots of filler shots of Miami.

Wanted Babysitter (1975) - Dreary, colour-shot but only avaialble in black and white psychodrama involving a movie actress, a kidnapping and Robert Vaughn in 18th century fop drag. With Maria Schneider, Sydne Rome and Vic Morrow. Rene Clement's last film.

At Long Last Love (1975) - Bogdanovich makes a musical, but doesn't know what to do. It feels cheap.

He is my Brother (1975) - Preachy vehicle for singer Bobby Sherman in Hawaii.

The Death Collector (1976) - Sub-Scorsese exploitation nonsense that nevertheless launched Joe Pesci and Frank Vincent.

Tracks (1977) - Henry Jaglom tedium with Dennis Hopper.

Bare Knuckles (1977) - Depressing, rough-hewn grindhouser.

Delta Fox (1979) - KPM library music-heavy skanky actioner with Richard Lynch as a hillbilly James Bond.
Blind Rage (1978) - Fred Williamson-guesting blind heist nonsense from the Philippines. Also with the KPM classic Dossier by Alan Hawkshaw, like the above.

Somebody Killed her Husband (1978) - Terrible Farrah Fawcett comedy vehicle.

Happy Birthday, Gemini (1980) - Annoying, swishy comedy with Madeline Kahn and the world's least convincing father and son (with Bare Knuckles' Robert Viharo as the absurdly young dad).

The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia (1981) - Dreary countrypolitan-based nonsense, not even really adapted from the song, so they change the lyrics. Mark Hamill and Dennis Quaid look baffled.

The Ballad of Gregorio Cortez (1982) - Ntsc-blurry PBS western.

Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean (1982) - Karen Black is a convincing transwoman, but it seems to be set in a post-apocalyptic timewarp.  Kathy Bates is almost unrecognisable. The flashbacks are a bit Blue Remembered Hills.

The Slavers (1984) - Dreary Canadian miserabilism with Larry Kent.

Hollywood Harry (1986) - Unfunny Cannon-funded Robert Forster private eye vanity project.

Saving Grace (1986) - "Charming", laugh-free comedy where Tom Conti becomes Pope and channels Topol.

Twice Dead (1988) - Bare, suspense-free Corman horror with hilarious 30s flashbacks.

High Frequency (1988) - Dreary Maine-set Berlusconi drama about a kid with a ham radio. Nice Pino Donaggio score.