Monday 30 December 2019


The Flirting Widow (1930 - b/w) - Typical 30s romantic comedy of manners, with Basil Rathbone. Not my bag.

Grumpy (1930 - b/w) - George Cukor's first film, an average, stagey proto-talkie about a grumpy old Englishman. A melodrama.

Sidewalks of New York (1931 - b/w) - Halfway between a silent Buster Keaton film and a talkie kid gang movie, and never quite gels. Almost forgettable if it weren't a Keaton film.

a nous la liberte (1931 - b/w) - Modern Times stole from Rene Clair to the point of plagiarism.

Payment Deferred (1932 - b/w) - Charles Laughton adds authenticity to an average Hollywood-British melodrama.

Before Dawn (1933 - b/w) - Generic old dark house thriller with Warner Oland.

Kid Millions (1934) - Eddie Cantor musical, not great, until the astonishing proto-Wonka climax in color.

Stamboul Quest (1934 - b/w) - Forgettable MGM period drama/semi-actioner.

Jalna (1935 - b/w) - Bland, unmemorable faux-Canadian family drama with Nigel Bruce.

Ali Baba Goes to Town (1937 - b/w) - I find Eddie Cantor annoyingly gormless.

The Good Old Soak (1937) - Why did I watch this drunken Wallace Beery drama...

Busman's Honeymoon (1940 - b/w) -Robert Montgomery is a terrible Americanised Peter Wimsey.

Scattergood Baines (1941)/Scattergood meets Broadway (1942 - b/w)/Scattergood Survives A Murder (1942 - b/w) - Forgettable rural comedies with Guy Kibbee, radio spinoffs.

The Wild Man of Borneo (1941 - b/w) - Generic "loveable eccentric in a small town" programmer with Frank Morgan.

The Sea Wolf (1941 - b/w) - Typical 40s seafaring fare.

This Woman is Mine (1941 - b/w) - Second-rate maritime drama with Franchot Tone and Walter Brennan.

Arabian Nights (1942) - Maria Montez tosh, with Sabu. Basically a panto. There's even comedy crossdressing.

Thunder Birds (1942) - Forgettable Fox color air display schlock. On dvd.

There's One Born Every Minute (1942 - b/w) - Elizabeth Taylor's debut, a forgettable sitcom thing.

Nightmare (1942 - b/w) - A dummy death is the highlight of this Universal crime-thriller with Brian Donlevy and Diana Barrymore.

Mission to Moscow (1943 - b/w) - Hoary old biopic/propaganda of Ambassador Walter Davis, with Walter Huston.

This Land is Mine (1943 - b/w) - Preachy WW2 fare set in a fantasyland with Charles Laughton, Maureen O'Hara and George Coulouris.

Schweik's New Adventures (1943 - b/w) - Nothingy propaganda piece made by the British. Pro-Czech.

Assignment in Brittany (1943 - b/w) - Dreary Jean Pierre Aumont wartime noir.

White Savage (1943) - Colourful but lacking in every department, typical Maria Montez. In some shots, Sidney Toler (playing a sinister Charlie Chan-if-he-were-a-villain) is not wearing either yellowface or hair dye.`

Laura (1944 - b/w) - On DVD. It's a romance disguised as a thriller. It looks gorgeous. But it's a bit too lovelorn with itself. Dana Andrews comes across as childish.  Second time attempting this.

Club Havana (1945 - b/w) - Generic noirish musical from Edgar Ulmer, for PRC.

Molly and Me (1945 - b/w) - Sentimental Gracie Fields comedy that is worth it for the embryonic middle-stage Roddy McDowall, who is extremely camp and lispy and twinky - at the difficult teen stage. He's lost his child star cuteness, he's not quite the character actor he'd evolve into. And he does the Galen nose-thing. There's also a dog in a bowler hat.

Dark Passage (1947 - b/w)/The Enforcer (1951  - b/w) - Generic Bogie.

Sorry, Wrong Number (1948 - b/w) - Barbara Stanwyck noir/woman's picture. I can appreciate the style, but it feels quite average.

Force of Evil (1948 - b/w) - A typical noir. A little too brutal and nihilistic for my liking.

Flamingo Road (1949 - b/w) - Tiresome antebellum melodrama with Joan Crawford that later spawned a Dallas-alike soap.

Spy Hunt (1950 -  b/w) - Forgettable European-set Universal spy B-flick with Howard Duff. Makes the idea of black panthers loose in the Alps dull.

The Miniver Story (1950 - b/w) - A bare-faced retread of the first film, that despite being made in Britain at Borehamwood, has to recreate the look of the original film so it still looks like it was made in Burbank.

Kim (1950) - Walnut juice-faced character actors ahoy in this cutesy Dean Stockwell-centred take on Kipling.

State Secret/The Great Manhunt (1950 - b/w) - Douglas Fairbanks Junior, Jack Hawkins, Glynis Johns and Herbert Lom are in a ludicrous Launder/Gilliat attempt at a serious Hitchcockian thriller set in a comedy Ruritania.

Peking Express (1951 - b/w) - Lazy male-centred remake of Shanghai Express with Joseph Cotten.

The Lemon Drop Kid (1951 - b/w) - Typical sentimental Bob Hope froth, that launched the song Silver Bells.

Hidden Face (1952 - b/w) - A strange, dreamlike Hammer quickie noir with Paul Henreid, Lizabeth Scott and Andre Morell.

Naked Alibi (1954 - b/w) - Why do I still watch noir? Sterling Hayden, probably.

Affair in Trinidad (1952 - b/w) - Gilda 2 - This Time It's Rusted.

Red Ball Express (1952 - b/w) - Generic occupied Europe WW2 fare with an interracial balance including Sidney Poitier.

Girdle of Gold (1952 - b/w) - Amiable but forgettable Welsh b-comedy with Esmond Knight in a lead.

The Thief (1952 - b/w) - A strange, never entirely successful modern silent by Ray Milland. It feels contrived in the way it avoids dialogue.
Not to be confused with the bland, generic WW2 Milland Eady Levy-bait The Safecracker (1958 - b/w).

Big Jim McLain (1952 - b/w) - Cutesy, heroic but insidious anti-commie fascist nonsense from John Wayne as a commie-smasher in Hawaii.

Stalag 17 (1953 - b/w) - Generic, obnoxious, smarmy wartime semi-comedy.

East of Sumatra (1953) - Jeff Chandler and Anthony Quinn in generic foreign action nosh.

The Brute (1953) -Still feels like typical Mexican cinema of the 50s, even if directed by Bunuel.

Dial M for Murder (1954)/North by Northwest (1959) - Rewatched these Hitchcocks. They're sort of like the Bible. Even if you find them three star material, you can't really criticise. Plus the terrible The Wrong Man.

Dangerous Mission (1954) -Early Irwin Allen. Unmemorable color crime film with Victor Mature chasing Vincent Price in the ice.

The Dam Busters (1954)- It does the utterly unremarkable aviation war-actioner genre well enough.

Heart of the Matter (1955) - Average British social drama, Trevor Howard in colonial saga by Graham Greene. Got the DVD.

The Mountain (1956) - Generic mountaineering tosh with Spencer Tracy and Robert Wagner as brothers who look like grandfather and grandson.

Reach for the Sky (1956 - b/w) - Utterly generic wartime heroism.

Smiley (1956) - Ralph Richardson and Chips Rafferty costar in an Aussie Dennis the Menace-type thing about a sickly sweet naughty-innocent schoolboy. It spawned a comic in Eagle spinoff Swift. A sequel, Smiley Gets A Gun (1958) with a recast Smiley and Sybil Thorndike plus Chips followed.

The Long Haul (1957 - b/w) - Dreary sub-Hell Drivers provincial trucker noir with Diana Dors and Victor Mature.

Congo Crossing (1957) - Dire 50s African jungle tosh, despite Peter Lorre.

The Pride and the Passion (1957) - A Technicolor epic that could easily be a cheapie, were it not for the cast.

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958) - Typical Tennessee Williams, well-made but overheated.

Violent Road (1958 - b/w) - Efficient though average rocket-themed version of The Wages of Fear, with Brian Keith.

The Gazebo (1959 - b/w) - Sitcommy, slapsticky but unmemorable thriller with Glenn Ford and Debbie Reynolds.

Wind Across the Everglades (1959) - Piratey Everglades western-ish thing with a sexy Christopher Plummer in his debut and Burl Ives, but a western potboiler in pirate drag.

Never so Few (1959) - Frank Sinatra  leads a good cast in a tedious jungle peril.

Cone of Silence (1960 - b/w) -Generic aircraft thriller with Peter Cushing and Michael Craig and George Sanders.

Secret of the Telegian (1961) - Nonsensical pseudo-invisible man movie from Japan.

The Guns of Navarone (1961) - Perfect Christmas entertainment, overlong so ou can talk about something else and having dinner in between. Rewatch.

Waltz of the Toreadors (1962) - Generic Peter Sellers-as-old-dotty-general tosh.

Freud (1962 - b/w) - Overlong, hoary, psychedelic John Huston biopic - half-staid, half-weird, never quite fitting in. Has the stars of BBC's Trainer in Susannah York and David McCallum.

The Leopard (1963) - It looks gorgeous, but it is basically a prototype Europudding miniseries.

The Cool Mikado (1963) - Early Michael Winner musical, memorable but  resembles an episode of an ITC series with songs. Starring Tommy Cooper.

Alone Across the Pacific (1963) - It looks nice, but it is basically a fake documentary with some stuff in San Francisco at the end.

A Jolly Bad Fellow (1964 - b/w) - Leo McKern is good, but it's a tonally unsure programmer.

The Americanization of Emily (1964) - Seems to forget for a while it is supposed to be a Julie Andrews vehicle. Confused if it is a satire of wartime romances or a wartime romance.

The Chalk Garden (1964) - Turgid, sentimental soapie with Hayley and John Mills and Deborah Kerr.

The Dirty Game (1965 - b/w) - Dreary all-star Eurospy noir despite Terence Young co-directing one of the installments.

The Glass Bottom Boat (1966) - Generic, sunny but unfunny Doris Day comedy. At this point, she's a little too old to be the silly girl. On DVD.

The Face of Another (1966) - Slow, slightly creepy-in-the-wrong way Japanese take on Seconds, a man forced to wear an uncanny valley mask.

The Battle of the Mods (1966) - Ever wanted to see a British rock and roll film if made by the Edgar Wallace krimi gang... This is it. It begins in a  Liverpool that looks like West Germany with a lot of fog and blurry old terraced buildings. And not a Scouse accent to be heard. Then, cuts across Europe.

Woman Times Seven (1967) - Another all-star indulgence for Shirley Mac.

Weekend (1967) - Apocalyptic Godard bullshit.

Reflections in a Golden Eye (1967) - Overlong, sleazy, unenjoyable bonkbuster with Marlon Brando and Liz Taylor looking lost in what is supposed to be Long Island (and was, plus interiors in Rome, hence Gordon Mitchell appearing), but because it's John Huston directing, it looks like Ireland. This was supposed to launch Robert Forster.

Trans-Europ-Express (1967 - b/w) - Slightly pervy artiness without a plot from Robbe-Grillet.

Hotel (1967) - Another nonsensical mockbuster.

The Milky Way (1969) - Bunuel sends two vagrants into a chocolate bar full of surrealistic nonsense.

Hellfighters (1969) - John Wayne is Red Adair, and it goes on and on, delving into soapie romance.

Gaily, Gaily (1969) - Gormless Beau Bridges in an unfunny coming of age sex  comedy based on Ben Hecht.

Pound (1970) - Robert Downey Sr nonsense about humans in a dog pound. Surrealist bullshit. Features a little blond boy playing with the dogs. That's Downey Jr (Robert not Morton).

Five Easy Pieces (1970) - Dreary New Hollywood nonsense.

Ryan's Daughter (1970) - The village doesn't look like a real Irish village. It looks like an apocalyptic landscape. It doesn't look far off something from Beneath the Planet of the Apes. Robert Mitchum sounds like he is going down to Winnipeg to get some Moosehead for the hockey.

Hoffman (1970) - Based on a novel by Irish writer Ernest Gebler, seemingly pervy Peter Sellers pays Sinead Cusack to spend a few nights with him, and in the end, she leaves Jeremy Bulloch for him.

Donkey Skin (1970) - Jacques Demy and Catherine Deneuve's Tales from Europe. Typical garish, somewhat tacky fairytale. The end has a helicopter land to shatter reality.

A New Leaf (1971)- It's sweet, but the kind of New York humour of that era leaves me cold. Don't ask. I've tried. I've tried.

Follow Me (1972) - Forgettable romantic comedy with Topol, Mia Farrow and Michael Jayston. Has Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed and the Evil of Frankenstein used to play the same film.

In Celebration (1973) - From the American Film Theatre, practically a Play for Today, with a pre-Compo Bill Owen in a lead doing his Compo voice, alongside Alan Bates and James bloody Bolam sounding like Terry Collier if he became Bob Ferris in Whatever Happened to the Likely Lads? Northern Grimness.

The Conversation (1974) - I found it kind of over-self-conscious and unthrilling. Typical Coppola.

Heartbreak Pass (1975) - Not a western fan, and previously attempted this, but once you give it time, it becomes an interesting murder-mystery with Bronson and a great cast of character actors.

Framed (1975) - Generic hicksploitation with Joe Don Baker.

Royal Flash (1975) - It's typical Richard Lester swashbuckling nonsense, despite the brilliant cast. David Jason livens the screen in a tiny role as a moustachioed mayor. It is weird seeing Sir David in a proper film.

Insiang (1976) - Grim, well-made but tough to watch rape revenge from Lino Brocka.

Foxtrot (1976) - Mexican Europudding with Peter O'Toole, Max von Sydow and Charlotte Rampling having sex  in Majorca.

Greased Lightning (1977) - TV movie-like racing biopic with Richard Pryor.

3 Women (1977) - Creepy, pervy, if it weren't Altman, it might be an erotic thriller.

A Wedding (1978) - Shambolic, voyeuristic, cluttered Altman study of a wedding.

Born Again (1978) - An early example of well-budgeted Christian cinema. Starring Dean Jones as  real-life  reformed Watergate figure Chuck Colson, plus Dana Andrews, Jay Robinson, ex-IRA man George Brent,Raymond St. Jacques, Anne Francis and Billy Graham, plus a rough lookalike of Nixon and future Babylon 5 star Peter Jurasik aged 28 unconvincingly cast as Kissinger. If Larry Buchanan or Larry Cohen was a Christian, this is imagine how their films would look like.

Real Life (1979) - Aside from the fire of Tara scene, this Albert Brooks film parodying PBS' The American Family feels like a five minute sketch stretched to a feature, hence repetitive scenes of a camera-helmet.

Nostalghia (1983) - Arty Soviet-Italian coproduction on the life of defection from Tarkovsky.

Ladyhawke (1985) - Richard Donner's direction and a key cast mean it is  better assembled than most junky fantasies but it meanders.

Club Paradise (1986) - Despite the SCTV cast, it feels like a proper cast trying to enact a teen sex comedy.

Tales from the Gimli Hospital (1988) - All Guy Maddin films are the same.

Santa Sangre (1989) - Jodorowsky's tackiest, squirmiest picture.

The Wild East (1993) - Post-apocalyptic Kazakh western.

The Watermelon Woman (1996) -  An interesting film from Cheryl Dunye, about a young black lesbian filmmaker's search for a mysterious black actress of 30s poverty row films. However, to quote Joe Bob Briggs, there's too much plot in the way of the story, with stuff about Dunye's character's personal life, which although entertaining, could have been pruned slightly. But in all, a fine discovery.

Bleak Future (1997) - Very FMV game-y spoof. Amateurish but energetic post-apocalyptic comedy.

Peut-Etre (1999) - Post-apocalyptic Jean Paul Belmondo stuff with lots of Euro-skangers in tracksuits with spiky hair.

Saturday 21 December 2019

90 - mostl ok.rued

Phantom (1922 - b/w)/Der Finanzen des Grossherzogs (1924 - b/w) - Average melodramas/comedies directed with style by Murnau.  The DVD is scrubbed-up.

Parnell  (1937 - b/w) - As awful as the reviews, no wonder it is forgotten in Ireland even among fans of classic film. Clark Gable has no beard. Numerous Irish characters have US accents (are they the forefathers of the Country and Irish scene?), everything looks fake.

The Man who Came to Dinner (1942 - b/w) - All-star Christmas comedy, it's well-made, but the sort of humour that I don't particularly enjoy. Smiles not laughs.

Above Suspicion (1943 - b/w) - Fred MacMurray and Joan Crawford in a well-made but thoroughly generic chase thriller/propaganda piece.

Her Primitive Man (1944 - b/w) - Edward Everett Horton and Robert Benchley in a forgettable, dated comedy that predates the later Krippendorf's Tribe.

Confidential Agent (1945 - b/w) - Not-bad but generic European noir with Lauren Bacall as a Lancashire lass and Charles Boyer, plus Lorre, Coulouris and Zucco.

She Gets Her Man (1945 - b/w) - Generic, forgettable mystery-comedy with Joan Davis and Leon Errol.

Christmas in Connecticut (1945 - b/w) - A typical screwball comedy. A good cast but that kind of Christmas Americana doesn't really do well with me.

The Two Mrs. Carrolls (1946 - b/w) - Stanwyck and Bogie in a strange noirish thrillr set in a strange England. Nigel Bruce does his Watson schtick.

The Lost Moment (1947 - b/w) - Preposterous Universal gothic romance with Agnes Moorehead as  the world's oldest woman.

Lady in the Lake (1947 - b/w) - The first FMV interactive movie game.

The Saxon Charm (1948 - b/w) - Generic, undistinguished Robert Montgomery noir.

Top O'The Morning (1949 - b/w)- Awful Oirish musical nonsense with Bing Crosby and Barry Fitzgerald (a great actor, but in some ways, the Irish Stepin Fetchit - though to be honest, this is the Irish theatre's own fault - Irish TV alwas falling back on stereotypes, see Wesley Burrowes' dramas)

Miracle in Milan (1951 - b/w) - What the Italians consider art is almost Norman Wisdom-esque. But I suppose it charms.

Pool of London (1951 - b/w) - A typical British drama of the era, except it has a non-white lead in Earl Cameron. Technically, two, because Bonar Colleano, the ostensible white lead was of Australian Aborigine descent. It's well-directed but aside from the obvious, unremarkable. Watched on DVD.

Sealed Cargo (1951 - b/w) - Generic maritime noir with Dana Andrews and Claude Rains.

99 River Street (1953 - b/w) - Generic inner-city noir with John Payne.

Hell Below Zero (1954 - b/w) - Generic Warwick-made British actioner from the 50s, Alan Ladd and a bunch of lost souls in the Antarctic.

Berlin Schoenhauser Corner (1957) - East German new wave dreariness.

The Fearmakers (1958 - b/w) - Dana Andrews and Jacques Tourneur's post-Night of the Demon project is a ambitious but undistinguished commie-smasher noir set in Washington, with Mel Torme.

Flood Tide (1958 - b/w) - Sloppy father/son in a boat noir with George Nader.

Never Let Go (1961 - b/w) - Generic B/W crime-thriller with Richard Todd and serious Peter Sellers.

Ring of Fire (1961) - Western-like disaster film for country folk with David Janssen.

Johnny Nobody (1961 - b/w) - Aldo Ray, Nigel Patrick, Yvonne Mitchell, William Bendix, Bernie Winters and a murderer's row of Irish stars - from Jimmy O'Dea to T.P. McKenna in an Enniskerry-set blarney noir.

Fanny (1961) - Another interchangeable Leslie Caron film. It's very nicely shot. Part of Horst Buchholz's attempt at Hollywood stardom.

Requiem for a Heavyweight (1961 - b/w)/The Hustler (1961 - b/w) - Television tries to imitate small-room live drama. Both have Jackie Gleason. Well-made but really just watching this for my inner semi-completist. The Hustler is way too long. But then it is about snooker/pool, so I suppose that suits it.

A Long Day's Journey into Night (1962 - b/w) - Basically  a play, and the sort of family drama I find impenetrable.

Tender is the Night (1962) - Bland studio romance.

War Hunt (1962 - b/w) - John Saxon and Robert Redford star in a sub-Sam Fuller Korean war thing.

The Password is Courage (1962 - b/w) - Generic wartime POW stuff with Dirk Bogarde.

This is Not  A Test (1962 - b/w) - So awful it didn't get released. People stand on a road and wait for the bomb to drop.

Birdman of Alcatraz (1962 - b/w) - Lancaster and Savalas are great, but it feels at the same time, grim and sentimental.

Kill or Cure (1962 - b/w) - Average, boilerplate, generic 60s British comedy with Terry-Thomas and Eric Sykes.

Phaedra (1962 - b/w) - A romance so overheated, if it were funny it might be a parody. Even as a kid, I disliked Melina Mercouri.

David and Lisa (1962 - b/w) - God I can't stand people overacting, playing mentally challenged folk.

America America (1963 - b/w) - Anatolian-set Oscar bait that is now almost entirely forgotten. Just a sea of men in fezzes. Even Frank Wolff and John Marley are made interchangeable.

Ladybug Ladybug (1963 - b/w) - Proto-PBS preach of anti-nuclear war.
See also Fail Safe (1964 - b/w).

The Balcony (1963 - B/W) - Rigid, weird stage adaptation of a Genet play set in a European fantasyland with Peter Falk and Shelley Winters.

Nine Hours to Rama (1963) - Despite filming in India, this dramatisation of the killing of Gandhi is so shoddy that Horst Buchholz isn't even wearing brownface for much of it.

The Very Edge (1963 - b/w) - Grim British thriller with Jeremy Brett as a stalker. Actually shot in Ardmore, hence a cameo by Maureen Potter stooge Danny Cummins.

Paris when it Sizzles (1964) - Can't decide what it is.

What A Way To Go (1964 - b/w) - Terrible comedy starring Shirley MacLaine and a ton of leading men.

Night of the Iguana (1964 - b/w) - It looks nice, but becomes clinical. Overheated Southern prose not my thing.

How To Steal A Million (1965) - An average 60s heist-alleged comedy that served the basis for those Renault ads, you know the ones, "Papa?" "Nicole". Here, Audrey Hepburn and Hugh Griffith are Nicole and her da.

Up from the Beach (1965 - b/w) - Average b/w war film with Cliff Robertson and Marius Goring at D-Day.

Brainstorm (1965 - b/w) - Idiotic thriller starring Captain Pike and Altaira, from William Conrad.
See also My Blood Runs Cold (1965 - b/w), which feels like an overlong SCTV sketch without the laughs.

Rapture (1965 - b/w) - Slow, arty, faux-French drama of a girl, her dad Melvyn Douglas and Dean Stockwell as a fugitive.

Mickey One (1965 - b/w) - Beatnik-y arty nonsense from Warren Beatty.

Return from the Ashes (1965) - Bland Nazi drama with two Phantoms - Schell vs Lom.

Battle of Algiers (1966 - b/w) - Grim but stunning, but basically a narrative documentary.

Lost Command (1966) - Generic wartime story, despite the Algiers setting - Anthony Quinn bellows, while George Segal is ludicrously cast as "the Arab".

A Fine Madness (1966) - Sean Connery tries to do a silly Jerry Lewis-style comedy, and fails.

This Property is Condemned (1966) - Tries to turn a tragic story cutesy and fails.
See also another Natalie Wood-Robert Redford vehicle, the annoyingly chirpy-yet-cynical Inside Daisy Clover (1966), a drama with a comedy tone. Like a Neil Sedaka song in film form.

Point Blank (1967) - An almost entirely generic American action-thriller. From before John Boorman moved here, so LA even doesn't look like Wicklow to entertain.

Bonnie and clyde (1967) -  Too Southern, with a most obnoxious cast.

Hurry Sundown (1967) - An attempt to do a modern Gone with the Wind, as awful as Michael Caine's pub cowboy accent. Pity because Robert Hooks has a ton of charisma and looks great shirtless, and this feels like a star vehicle for him. But the camera is more interested in Caine drunkenly playing the saxophone.

Robbery (1967) - Generic proto-Euston larks. On blu-ray with a krimi-esque adap, The Great Train Robbery (1965), starring Horst "Derrick" Tappert, that is so documentary-like it becomes rather staid and boring.

Attack on the Iron Coast (1968) - Generic WW2 puff with Lloyd Bridges and Andrew Keir.

The Brotherhood (1968) - Kirk Douglas in a dreary proto-Godfather.

Duffy (1968)/Sebastian (1968) - 1968 was forgetttable thriller starrring Susannah York season.  At least Duffy has inexplicable drag-diving from James Coburn.

The Big Bounce (1969) - Generic sun-lounging noir-ish Elmore Leonard plodder with the insufferable Ryan O'Neal.

Que Le Bete Meure (1969) - Chabrol directs what could easily be an episode of a French TV show. Also confusingly known as the Beast Must Die.

Goodbye Columbus (1969) - Dreary post-Graduate Jewish romance.

The Lost Man (1969) - Dull, talky Sidney Poitier actioner.

The Learning Tree (1969) - Simultaneously authentic-feeling and kind of preachy story of black life.

Model Shop (1969) - A tedious New Hollywood-meets-New Wave exploration of L.A.

Change of Mind (1969) - Despite a fine performance by Raymond St. Jacques as a white millionaire in a black man's body, it can't help feeling TV movie-esque.

A Walk with Love and Death (1969) - An entirely unmemorable romantic medieval drama directed by John Huston intended to launch Anjelica as a star, something which wouldn't occur for another fifteen years. She's odd in this film. She's far from the actress she grew into. She registers on screen as a nervous, untrained Irish teen. There's something vaguely Dana-esque about her, in her shawl. Perhaps Dana being told to mimic Jenny Agutter in the Railway Children. She looks like she's playing the Virgin Mary in a John Charles McQuaid-sponsored Easter float. Even her faux-English accent has the distinct sound of Irish theatre. She looks like she'd rather be at a Miami Showband concert. Plus it feels like it was made in Ireland, not France or Austria or Italy. Michael Gough has prominent credit but doesn't even appear. John Hallam is 4th billed. Star Assi Dayan is the son of Moshe, and became a noted actor back home in Israel.

Prípad pro zacínajícího kata (1970) - Surrealist Czech adap of Gulliver's Travels so loose that it is barely recognisable.

Fool's Parade (1971) - Bland TV movie-alike comedy with James Stewart, Kurt Russell and George Kennedy.

The Last Movie (1971) - Dennis Hopper goes mad while making a movie. Both the plot and the behind-the-scenes info.

Hit Man (1972) - Colourful but somewhat artless Blaxploitation Get Carter. Aside from Pam Grier and Bernie Casey, it lacks a decent cast.
See also Cool Breeze (1972) - an almost TV-level version of the Asphalt Jungle.

Melinda (1972) - Average private eye-r despite a solid lead in Calvin Lockhart, and the lovely Vonetta McGee.

The Hourglass Sanatorium (1973) - Surrealist Eastern Bloc folderol.

Swept Away (1974) - Giancarlo Giannini and Mariangela Melato argue on an island.

Goodbye Norma Jean (1976) - Soundtracked with a song that is legally close to Candle in the Wind without Reg Dwight suing, this is a bland, tabloidy, historically lazy exploitation pic.

Stir Crazy (1980) - After the delicious Silver Streak (1976), a descent into the average and the banal for Wilder and Pryor.

The State of Things (1982 - b/w) - Arty, self-indulgent twaddle about the making of a Roger Corman sci-fi picture, from Wim Wenders.

Jesus of Montreal (1988) - Bland French-Canadian story about the power of religions.

Big Night (1997) - Typical American indie about restaurants by Stanley Tucci. Ian Holm looks weirdly like Derek Fowlds.

Manolito Gafotas  en !Mola ser Jefe! (1999/2001) - Generic Spanish kids flick.

Monday 16 December 2019


Nibelungen  (1924 - b/w) - Epic, silent as opera from Mr. Fritz Lang.

The Squall (1929 - b/w) - Early talkie melodrama with Myrna Loy, obviously stagey.

They Met in a Taxi (1931 - b/w) - Forgettable Fay Wray romantic-comedy.

Hells Highway (1932 - b/w) - Generic Richard Dix prison punch.

Girl Missing (1933 - b/w) - Forgettable B-comedy with Ben Lyon and Glenda Farrell.

Anne of Green Gables (1934 - b/w) - Cheap, basic Classics Illustrated adap.

Les Miserables (1935)/Les Miserables (1952 - b/w) - Two Fox adaps. The first with Fredric March doesn't feel French. Charles Laughton looks like Divine in his little outfit.  The 1952 one with Michael Rennie, Robert Newton, Debra Paget, James Robertson Justice, Cameron Mitchell and weirdly, Elsa Lanchester feels like a cheap cash-in. Shooting in b/w makes it feel like a useless cover version.

The Westland Case (1937 - b/w) - Bland, generic Universal Crime Club mystery.

She Had to Eat (1937 - b/w) - Forgettable Jack Haley romcom.

It Happened in Hollywood (1937 - b/w) - Unfunny, smiles-not-laughs comedy about Richard Dix as Tom Mix, written by Samuel Fuller. Features a ton of celebrity lookalikes, and Fay Wray.

Victory (1940 - b/w) - Oh God, from Paramount, a dreary South Seas romance.

Turnabout (1940 - b/w) - Generic screwball comedy that apart from the gender-switch is quite average.

Wuthering Heights (1940 - b/w) - Olivier looks stiff. It almost looks like a western at times.

A Dispatch from Reuter's (1940 - b/w) - Edward G. Robinson in another western-feeling European period piece.

Whistling in the Dark (1941)/The Fuller Brush Man (1948 - b/w) - Was Red Skelton ever funny?

Sweater Girl (1942 - b/w) - Below-average mystery-musical college bowl with Eddie Bracken.

Now Voyager (1942 - b/w) - I can't take it seriously, because of Bette Davis' spinster outfit.

Munchausen (1943) - The Nazis' answer to Powell and Pressburger, with Brigitte Horney, future staple of badly dubbed West German kids' TV.

Hangmen Also Die (1943 - b/w) - It's stylish, because it's Fritz Lang, but at over 2 hours, it's way overlong for a quickie propaganda piece.

The Boy from Stalingrad (1943 - b/w) - Winsome American-accented brats fight Nazis in  a park. Shonky programmer.  Kids die. The end.

Margin for Error (1943 - b/w)  Shambolic tonally-awkward Nazi thriller with Milton Berle, Joan Bennett and Otto Preminger.

Cobra Woman (1944) - It's bewitchingly colourful. It's junk. Maria Montez can't act for toffee, either as heroine or villainess. It seems to be set  in both India, Arabia, the Pacific and a mythic fantasyland that can be visited by Christian missionaries and sailors. But it's nice looking junk.

Christmas Holiday (1944 - b/w) - Romance with Gene Kelly and Deanna Durbin that's regarded by some as noir, but is quite slushy.

Shady Lady (1945 - b/w) - Average musical comedy timewaster with Charles Coburn.

Blood on the Sun (1945 - b/w) - Silly yellowface-heavy James Cagney vehicle.

Where There's Life (1947 - b/w) - Entirely generic Bob Hope runaround with boy scouts.

Rogues' Regiment (1948 - b/w) - Vincent Price is a Nazi who joins the Foreign Legion in Indochine in a silly, throwaway if somewhat atmospheric noir.

The Heiress (1949 - b/w) - Generic Hollywood period drama with Olivia de Havilland.

Bagdad (1949) - Universal Arab nonsense with Maureen O'Hara as a red-haired Arab princess who sings Irish tenor-sounding Iraqi lullabies. Also with Paul Hubschmid and Vincent Price.

The Black Hand (1950 - b/w) - Generic crime drama with a miscast Gene Kelly.

The Next Voice You Hear (1950 - b/w) - Preachy Christian-themed God-on-the-radio nonsense with Nancy Reagan.

No Way Out (1950 - b/w) - Poitier and Widmark in a typical noir.

Armored Car Robbery (1950 - b/w) - Generic docunoir from Richard Fleischer.
See also The Narrow Margin (1952 - b/w).

Deadline USA (1952) - Generic newspaper thriller with Bogart.

Who Goes There! (1952 - b/w) - Generic, not-exactly-rib-tickling middle class comedy with George Cole as a Queen's Guard.

Mr. Scoutmaster (1953 - b/w) -Soft family comedy about Clifton Webb and some kids who read fake comic books.

The Girl in the Red Velvet Swing (1955) - Apparently, this lurid but empty period true crime epic starring Joan Collins, Ray Milland and Farley Granger was a favourite of a relative. It's just Joan trying to look pretty and poignant, and it also has musical numbers. It'sa bit tonally all over the shop. It's a true crime story that thinks it is a musical.

We're No Angels (1955) - Baffling comedy with Bogart, Ustinov and Aldo Ray lolloping about screwball situations in the Pacific, while Basil Rathbone is wasted.

Killer's Kiss (1955 - b/w) - Kubrick's first proper film. Is it a B-crime movie or an art film? Christ knows.

Àttack (1956 - b/w) - This Robert Aldrich war movie with a mixture of tough guys (Jack Palance, Lee Marvin) and rural sitcom stars (Buddy Ebsen and Eddie Albert) feels reasonably authentic, considering the backlot setting.

Satellite in the Sky (1956) - Boring aeronautics saga that just happens to be set in space. By the Danziger brothers, but it is very much an attempt at prestige. With Donald Wolfit, Kieron Moore, Lois Maxwell and Bryan Forbes.

Interpol (1957 - B/w)-  Generic exotic crime film with Victor Mature, Anita Ekberg and Trevor Howard, from the Warwick stable.

Tip On A Dead Jockey (1957 - b/w) - Forgettable Robert Taylor vehicle set in Spain.

The Story of Mankind (1957) - Who is this film for? Is it supposed to educate kids? It's miscast, it wastes its stars (the Marx Brothers are separate) and it seems to be there to use stock footage.  From Irwin Allen.

Nathalie (1957 - b/w)/Secret Agent Nathalie (1959 - b/w) - Baffling noirish action comedies distributed by AIP, with Martine Carol.

Next to No Time (1958)  - Laughless Kenneth More comedy on an ocean liner.
See also John Gregson in the more slapsticky The Captain's Table (1958 - there's a literal custard pie fight).

Twilight for the Gods (1958) - Generic seafaring programmer from Universal, with Rock Hudson.

High School Confidential (1958 - b/w) - Generic juvenile delinquency with Jerry Lee Lewis. The sequel, College Confidential (1960 - b/w) has Steve Allen,  Conway Twitty and a returning Mamie van Doren. It's supposed to be sexy but feels safe and bland, with musical numbers and Elisha Cook Jr's face.

The Miracle (1959) - Sentimental dramatisation of a Napoleonic miracle, with Carroll Baker and Roger Moore, that I only watched because it frightened my mother as a child, and instilled a lifelong fear of moving statues.

The Big Circus (1959) - Tedious all-star melodrama from Irwin Allen, padding between circus acts.

Jet Storm (1959 - b/w) - Another generic air disaster movie despite serious roles for Marty Wilde and Harry Secombe.

Crack in the Mirror (1960 - b/w) - Bland Europudding melodrama with Orson Welles.

The Apartment (1960 - b/w) - I find the setting unengrossing. Yes, it's a play.

Wernher von Braun (1960  b/w) - Bland biopic with Curd Jurgens.

Whistle Down The Wind (1961 - b/w) - It's nice, but nothing more. Typical Bryan Forbes middle-class cinema, an idealised halfway house between kitchen sink and magical realism.

The Mind Benders (1963 - b/w) - Dreary SF thriller with Dirk Bogarde.

The Girl Hunters (1964 - b/w) - Tiny, underbnourished UK-made Mike Hammer adap starring Mickey Spillane as his own creation, with an incongruous sweeping soundtrack. Spillane fades into the background. He's not Mike Hammer. He's Mike Hammer's God.

Le Monocle Rit Jaune (1964 - b/w) - Dreary Eurospy with Paul Meurisse in Hong Kong, plus Barbara Steele and a West Side Story-styled action sequence. The lead suddenly turns Japanese at the end.

The Amorous Adventures of Moll Flanders (1965 - b/w) - Forgettable all-star sexcom.

The Ghost Goes Gear (1966) - Colourful but plotless series of musical numbers for the Spencer Davis Group and Acker Bilk amongst others, with Nicholas Parsons and Jack Haig.

How I Won The War (1967)  - Silly, supposed wartime satire starring the intolerable duo of Michael Crawford and John Lennon.

The Comedians (1967) - Tedious drama set in Haiti with Burton, Taylor, Guinness, Ustinov and an all-star African-American cast doing accents. Has Sir Alec in his favourite pastime - blacking up.

Tarzan and the Great River (1967)/Tarzan and the Jungle Boy (1968) - Basically the same film. Tarzan for the Disney crowd.

Did You Hear the One About the Traveling Saleslady (1968) - Silly Phyllis Diller comedy.

Swiss Made (1968) - Futuristic plotless arty-dive from Switzerland.

Flareup (1969) - Simultaneously sleazy and tellymovie-like bland gogo-stalker thriller with Raquel Welch.

The Christmas Tree (1969)  Alongside A Dream of Kings, the prototype for schmaltzy Italian movies about dying kids. Here, William Holden and Virna Lisi's son gets radiation cancer from when a nuclear bomb detonates above a swimming spot. Bourvil is the comic relief. Predictable.

The Adding Machine (1970)  -Intolerable comedy, an attempt to launch Milo O'Shea as an American comedy star, doing yer typical Irish panto New York Jew voice that goes Dublin every so often. Also bizarrely has as his effeminate American sidekick, Julian Glover. His accent slips. It's a strange, silly but intolerable film.

Flap (1970) - Tonally all over the place comedy drama about walnut-juice-faced Native Americans, headed by Anthony Quinn who seems to be playing it as mentally challenged, with his baseball cap.

The Strawberry Statement (1970) - Bruce Davison and Kim Darby protest in intolerable if nicely shot student protest saga.
See also Getting Straight (1970) with Elliot Gould as a mature student involved in the same scrapes.

The Magic Garden of Stanley Sweetheart (1970) - Hot Twink Don Johnson tries to make a film on masturbation and grows a beard, and loses his prettiness, predating his  stubble-faced 80s self. Arty, pretentious post-Midnight Cowboy twaddle/satire on underground films that doesn't work.

Squeeze A Flower (1970) - Bland Aussie comedy about Walter Chiari as a winemaking monk, with Dave Allen, Jack Albertson, Cecil Kellaway's brother Alec (literally a cheaper version of his brother) and Sons and Daughters' Rowena Wallace.

Myra Breckinridge (1970) - Christ, what a fiasco.

Fools (1970) - Post-Love Story twaddle with Katharine Ross and Jason Robards as Vincent Price.

Brother John (1971) - Preachy racial harmony nonsense with Sidney Poitier as an angel.

Romance of a Horsethief (1971) - Russian Jewish adventure dreariness shot in Spain and Yugoslavia, with Yul Brynner, Eli Wallach, Birkin and Gainsbourg and introducing Oliver Tobias. It has a vaguely Harry Alan Towers-ish period scrappiness and lack of historical detail. Boring.

Kansas City Bomber (1972) - Medium Cool-ish but otherwise TV movie-esque story of Raquel Welch as a roller derby queen.

Frenzy (1972) - Rewatch. My favourite Hitchcock, probably. Plus it weirdly references Hitchcock homageur Brian Clemens, whose See No Evil is advertised on a bus.

A Warm December (1973) - Treacly Sidney Poitier passion project - black Roman Holiday/Love Story with an added cute kid daughter, George Baker as token white lead, plus the likes of Earl
Cameron lending class. But it looks very cheap, like an episode of The Persuaders!

The Mack (1973) - It certainly captures 70s Oakland.

Coffy (1973) - Pam Grier is an energetic lead, but I don't find the blaxploitation milieu of urban America that interesting.

The Crazy World of Julius Vrooder (1974) - Idiotic military-mental home com from Playboy.

Thieves Like Us (1974) -Robert Altman does a Corman-style gangster pic, slowly and plainly, plus it is set in what looks like Wicklow.

Nashville (1975) - Is it supposed to be a spoof? It feels like Altman is ripping the piss out of the country scene, in a way that  feels rather nasty.

The Man in the Glass Booth (1975)  - A great Maximillian Schell performance as a Jewish concentration camp survivor mistaken as  a Nazi can't help this adaptation of a Robert Shaw novel/play feel like a TVM. Schell's own Der Fussganger (1973) is basically the German flipside to this, but Glass Booth is much better.

Foes (1977) - Dreadful psychedelic semi-docudrama on UFOs with MacDonald Carey It only got a release theatrically in Britain.

Bobby Deerfield (1977) - A 40s romance for the New Hollywood era. Pacino is out of his depth amongst the continental aristocracy.

Angela (1977) - Like the Lana Turner vehicle Bittersweet Love the same year, this is a dreadful incest romance with Sophia Loren and her son Steve Railsback.

Target of an Assassin (1977) - Thought I saw this before, but this is a forgettable Anthony Quinn vehicle shot in South Africa by Peter Collinson.

The Stickup (1977) - Dreary, small The Sting imitation with David Soul and regular Britcom face Johnnie Wade, plus the likes of Liz Smith. Female lead Pamela McMyler does a dodgy Irish accent.

Girlfriends (1978) - Interesting, somewhat overlooked feminist feature. Youth Melanie Mayron tries to date the ancient-even-then Eli Wallach. Not my thing, but it's not bad.

An Unmarried Woman (1978) - Jill Clayburgh and Alan Bates in an overlong, meandering if somewhat amiable towards the end study of a woman by Paul Mazursky. A distaff version of Mazursky's Blume in Love (1973) - but with Bates instead of Kris Kristofferson.

They Went That-A-Way & That-A-Way (1978) - A Don Knotts and Tim Conway comedy but with Chuck McCann instead of Don Knotts. Both are appealing comic actors, but it's sub-Disney-meets-Hal Needham nonsense with the duo as convicts being chased by Richard Kiel. It's idea of a joke is McCann done up as a geisha girl.

Rich Kids (1979) - Two little shites fall in love. One's dad is John Lithgow, the other is whatshisface from Raise the Titanic/Dark Shadows/Falcon Crest.

The Runner Stumbles (1979) - A last-ditch attempt at big screen drama for Dick Van Dyke, as a priest who falls in love with young nun Kathleen Quinlan, but then tragedy strikes.  Stanley Kramer holds the film as director, but it feels like a TV movie. It is sentimental, it is rural, perfect for a busload for old nuns.

Cafe Express (1980) - Typical, baffling, sentimental though nicely-paced Italian comedy with Nino Manfredi. Has the titular train portrayed by a lovely if obvious miniature.

Lili Marleen (1981) - Fassbinder I find all gloss and no substance.

Nutcracker (1982) - Tacky, sexless attempt at Joan Collins erotica that sidelines old Joanie in favour of Finola Hughes and Paul Nicholas, and lots of half-baked Soviet espionage involving Vernon Dobtcheff in a rowing boat.

Paris, Texas (1984)  - It looks gorgeous, but it is really a miniseries.

The Last Temptation of Christ (1988) - Dear God, Scorsese turns the bible into a music video for Peter Gabriel's world music.

Also skimmed Beyond Reason (-1970), an amateurish Aussie post-apocalyptic film.

The Outcasts (-1982) - RTE do folk horror.

Tuesday 10 December 2019


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 darkly 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).

Tresaure 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) - 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 Claudio 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 Devil 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.