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Topics - cigar joe

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Off-Topic Discussion / The Getaway (1994)
« on: August 14, 2020, 06:34:59 PM »
Well I finally rectified not seeing the 1994 remake. I wasn't expecting too much but was pleasantly surprised. I knew it was Alec Baldwin and Kim Basinger taking the place of McQueen and MacGraw but didn't realize that the rest of the cast was a future all star line up. James Woods excepted Michael Madsen, Jennifer Tilly, Richard Farnsworth and Philip Seymour Hoffman. The others David Morse and James Stephens are OK. Some sequences are a bit more fleshed (wink, wink) out.

Director Roger Donaldson since he was making almost a shot by shot remake of Peckinpah couldn't screw it up too bad. I give it an 8/10

Off-Topic Discussion / Eddie Constantine
« on: July 28, 2020, 09:08:59 AM »
So here's the story. I'd seen him before a long time ago in Alphaville then a few years ago in an Italian gangster flick that titoli sent as a avi file, don't remember its name. So with those two films as a sampler I wasn't impressed.....

Then I was checking in a similar fashion the films of Diana Dors. Again like with Eddie Id seen her long ago in The Long Haul with Victor Mature then caught her again in The Unholy Wife. The first film wasn't much of a showcase but the second was better, however the film wasn't as good as it could have been. So my next sample was Tread Softly Stranger where Dors is a real sexpot who looks like she is going to constantly spill her boobs out of her various tops. It had some amusing in your face visual sexual innuendos like a giant rod poking into a hot furnace at an iron works rather than a fade to black when Dors and George Baker have sex.

So next up for Dors was Room 43 aka Passport to Shame more of an ensemble cast about the sex trade in London. The film also starred Herbert Lom as the pimp, Odile Versois, Brenda de Banzie, Robert Brown and Eddie Constantine in the lead playing a Canadian cab driver and speaking American English. That film was a 7-8/10 and Eddie was great it was an eye opener.

Eddie Constantine looks and sounds like he could be Michael Shannon's father.

Eddie Constantine

Michael Shannon

So I then fortunately found La m?me vert de aka Poison Ivy (1953) in an English language release, its cut slightly (there is a new Blu where you can see what got cut mostly a strip show act at the Shipwreck Bar) but its impressive for the second film by the director and first starring role for Constantine as character Lemule "Lemmie" Caution. Plus its shot all in Casablanca (no Rick's place though lol) and environs it was a decent 7/10. The English cut is on Amazon Prime the Blu is streaming on OK

Another eye opener is the Lemmie Caution US FBI character, who is a combination of James Bond 007 without the gadgets and Matt Helm's womanizer, always with a cigarette and drink in his hand and a bit of Daren McGavin's toned down version of Mike Hammer.

The Lemmie Caution character caught on in France and Europe like Lex Baker with Old Shatterhand in Germany and like Eastwood's The Man With No Name phenom caught on in Italy and eventually with the world.

Now trying to find more Caution flicks especially the second flick This Man Is Dangerous (1953) which is only available for streaming on Alocine and even though I joined, not available to stream.  :'(

Missing from any (known to me) sources are Dames Get Along aka Les femmes s'en balancent (1954) and Diamond Machine aka Vous pigez? (1955)

I have found Women Are Like That aka Comment qu'elle est? (1960) which was another 6-7/10 on Amazon Prime and the Italian titled Passoporto Falso which is ?a va ?tre ta f?te (1960) and is very well made I'm about 18 minutes into it on Youtube

I haven't searched for Ladies' Man aka Lemmy pour les dames (1962) Your Turn, Darling aka ? toi de faire... mignonne (1963)

After the above came Alphaville(1965)

Off-Topic Discussion / Tread Softly Stranger (1958) Brit Noir
« on: July 04, 2020, 05:53:58 PM »
Directed by Gordon Parry written by Jack Popplewell and Denis O'Dell (based on the play by George Minter) Starring Diana Dors, George Baker, Terence Morgan. Interesting little Noir showcasing Dors as the femme fatale to two brothers Dave and Johnny Mancell. Johnny was played by George Baker you may be familiar with from I, Claudius, he played Tiberius.

I think the opening sequence of this film may have been homaged in Get Carter

There are some humorous visual metaphors and Dors seems to constantly about to fall out of her dress/tops, only the friction between her boobs and the fabric miraculously seems to keep the film PG.

Off-Topic Discussion / The Macamober Affair (1947)
« on: May 28, 2020, 06:25:02 PM »

One of those sun baked, desert or tropical based Film Soleil Noirs. 7/10

This one leaves it up in the air at the end as to the outcome.  Joan Bennett and her husband Preston Foster are on safari with guide Gregory Peck  in Nairobi.  They are in a sort of estranged relationship. Hints of some type of  infidelity are implied.  Foster hopes the trip will revitalize their marriage.  Instead of regaining his manhood  he displays his weenie-ness when he throws away his rifle and runs  when the lion he wounded charges out of the brush. Back at the camp, Foster takes out his humiliation on the native crew. Its bad form, very bad form.   All that is witnessed by Bennett who is turned on to Peck.

Eventually Foster shows hes got a pair and is able to shoot an antelope, he also is ready to give Bennett he walking papers. Bennett realizes shes gonna loose her sugar daddy.   Foster next shoots a couple of buffalo. One is only wounded and the same scenario with the lion plays out. They have to go in to dispatch it. When the buffalo rears up and charges  both Foster and Peck shoot at it along with Bennett but instead of hitting the buffalo she shoots Foster in the back of the head.  Was it an accident or deliberate.?  Peck fills out a report that it was an accident, but questions Bennett who admits that in her heart she wanted to kill him. The film ends with her walking to the coroners inquiry.

Off-Topic Discussion / The Human Jungle (1954) Cop Shop Noir
« on: May 22, 2020, 05:44:10 AM »

I love it when I find a diamond in the rough.

The director Joseph M. Newman didn't readily ring any bells so looked him.up. Newman is responsible for 711 Ocean Drive, and a recent discovery Death in Small Doses. Both pretty good Noirs. He also directed the studio bound Dangerous Crossing and later some twilight Zone episodes. The cinematographer Ellis W. Carter did a couple of Noirs I've never heard of Big Town After Dark and Waterfront at Midnight. The well polished screenplay was by Daniel Fuchs and William Sackheim.

Fuchs has a pretty good pedigree in noir responsible for The Gangster, Hollow Triumph, Criss Cross, Panic in the Streets and Storm Warning. Sackheim adapted 3D Noir Man in the Dark.  The music was by Hans J. Salter.

So who starred in it?, is probably your next question. Garry Merrill he really impressed me with his portrayal of wise ass hood Tommy Scalisi opposite Dana Andrews in Where The Sidewalk Ends.

He didn't have to go over the top like Widmark doing that other Tommy, "have a nice trip down the stairs Mrs. Rizzo," Tommy Udo. Merrill sold Scalisi with his cool delivery and his stance. He sold it and you bought it. What Merrill does here is portraying his range. He's equally believable to me as a smart hard as nails police reformer Police Capt. John Danforth. Then watch his broken on the wagon wino in the Transitional Noir The Incident.

What also makes you wonder why The Human Jungle isn't more well known is the equally exceptional performances of rest of the cast.

Jan Sterling plays a stripper/hooker Mary Abbott, I've never seen her look better and she was a veteran of seven noirs prior to this role (she is also in The Incident). Regis Toomey fits the part of Det. Bob Geddes like putting on an old pair of comfortable slippers.

Chuck Connors really sines as meathead, gang muscle Earl Swados. Then you have, perennially popping up as a cop, Emile Meyer as Police Chief Abe Rowan and the equally adept James Westerfield as Police Capt. Marty Harrison.

Claude Akins is the mob connected owner of the Hutch, George Mandy.  The rest of the cast just add to the realism. Lamont Johnson as Det. Lannigan is great and looks amazingly like Tom Hanks, Patrick Waltz as Det. Strauss, Paula Raymond as Pat Danforth, Gary Merrill's wife. The rest, George Wallace as Det. O'Neill, Chubby Johnson as Greenie and, Florenz Ames as Leonard Ustick are equally believable.

Its a well executed film from Allied Artists, and when you're not expecting too much going into it you get a pleasant surprise with what was achieved.

The story is more about cleaning up a troublesome police precinct than solving the crime of who bludgeoned the floozy in the alley. The atmosphere of a lackadaisical precinct full of cops who don't give a shit is well executed. An old New York Times review from 1954 mentions that the film was full of "generally unfamiliar faces." It's full of faces that subsequently became quite famous and familiar on TV.

An anonymous  New York Times review at the time, goes on to say that "Unfortunately, the color of this hard-bitten canvas surpasses its substance. Mr. Merrill's campaign is valiant but predictable, hinging on the inevitable platinum blond cutie, excellently played, as usual, by Jan Sterling."

This just goes to say that back in the day (the 50s) they were churning out these cops and criminal features like they were going out of style. From 1949 to 1954 they produced 52 in '49, 57 during high water mark  '50, 39 in 51 then 26, 21, and back up to 26 in 1954. That's 221 Crime features a lot of the great Film Noir. It's easy to see how this gets lost in the shuffle.

The Times also went on to say "And Emile Meyer, Regis Toomey, Chuck Connors and most of the other supporting roles are expertly ticked off."Sounds like he's writing a four star review. He goes on "Furthermore, for once we get a rather unorthodox fa?ade for evil in Florenz Ames' chilling milquetoast."

I think the final lines display a somewhat jaded attitude "Alas, none of them, including Mr. Merrill's hero, is particularly intriguing. For all the picturesque puttering and sputtering, "The Human Jungle" lodges unimportantly somewhere between "The Asphalt Jungle" and "Detective Story.""  Its important now because of the new interest in Films Noir, and sitting between The Asphalt Jungle and Detective Story ain't to shabby a spot, don't ya think?

It's not so much about solving a crime as it is about the change in the characters getting there. From Allied Artist originally Monogram Pictures. Its a bit studio bound and could have used more location shots. 8/10

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly / GBU trivia
« on: May 08, 2020, 01:12:46 PM »
Who is this man and how his he important to The Good The Bad and The Ugly

Other Films / The Naked Dawn (1955)
« on: April 15, 2020, 04:29:58 AM »
Director: Edgar G. Ulmer with stars, Arthur Kennedy, Betta St. John, Eugene Iglesias. Spannish guitar soundtrack. Mexican set 1950s Western with Kennedy as Santiago a bandit who robs rail yard boxcars with a partner who gets shot and dies on the trail. Santiago stashes the loot. He next meets a senorita at a water hole then her husband a poor honest farmer. He pays the husband to drive him to Matamoros, where on the way he picks up the boxes of loot which contain watches. He sells then to a crooked border agent (who alerted Santiago about the cargo in the boxcar) who tries to stiff him for his dead partners share of the money. When Santiago complains the agent pulls a gun. Santiago manages to get it away from him then with the farmer helping, he puts a rope around the agents neck throws it over a beam and ties the other end to the safe leg demanding the combination.

It plays like one of those John Wayne "Mesquiteers - Stoney Brooke" type Westerns where you got a mix of old West and modern stuff.

Its interesting and amusing enough to keep your interest, Kennedy is hilarious as a Mexican . 6/10

On Youtube BTW

General Discussion / Awaiting Approval
« on: March 05, 2020, 01:49:59 PM »
Wow we got 3817 members awaiting approval

General Discussion / MOVED: Happy New Year!
« on: December 31, 2019, 04:15:57 PM »
This topic has been moved to [Off Topic].

Off-Topic Discussion / Motherless Brooklyn (2019)
« on: November 02, 2019, 03:34:20 PM »
Wow this one was very impressive reminded me of a New York version of Chinatown it was very film noir- ish. Impressive cast also. 9/10

Off-Topic Discussion / PHENAKISTOSCOPE
« on: October 15, 2019, 11:46:39 AM »

Off-Topic Discussion / Poodle Springs (1989)
« on: September 11, 2019, 05:26:02 PM »
Previous comments:

Quote from: dave jenkins on April 09, 2017, 06:31:39 PM

Poodle Springs (1998) - 6/10. James Caan as Marlowe. Lame TV-like production, but with some features of interest.
link is dead.

Quote from: titoli in response from a review on March 23, 2011, 12:30:26 AM

Poodle Springs (1998) There is the famous anecdote about the people filming The Big Sleep about not knowing who had killed a secondary character of the story and Chandler, asked by them about it, didn't remember either. Well, I don't know what poor Leigh Brackett and Howard Hawks could have made if they had to transpose this for the screen. I mean, I haven't read the novel (and I never intended to, out of respect for Chandler) but if I assume (as jenkins is wont to) that Rafelson simplified the story once he brought it on the screen I can't imagine what the original novel (a development on the first 6 chapters left by Chandler) by Robert B. Parker was like.  But that is not the question because that is not why people, I think, read P.I. novels. You read Agatha Christie for the plot, you read Chandler or Spillane or even Stout for the characters, the dialogues, the city descriptions. Here the dialogues are standard, nothing memorable. Characters are standard and forgettable as well. The final explication and shooting are embarrassing. And, most of all, James Caan does nothing to sympathize with his character: and he looks old, older than Mitchum in his own Marlowe movies. I think Caan could have made a good (don't know how good) Mike Hammer in the '70's or even the '80's. But his Marlowe at 58 sucks. I think the best Marlowe, or at least the one that suits better my idea of him, is James Garner's, even though The Little Sister is not the best movie of the series. 6\10

I've always heard negative things about Poodle Springs. Even some from SLWB members (see above), So I avoided both novel and film.....

Its bullshit... the negative comments. This film is a great addition to the Philip Marlowe detective film "universe." I like it better than Altman's unconventional The Long Goodbye.

Poodle Springs was the novel started by Raymond Chandler that was unfinished at the time of his death. He knocked out the first handful of chapters before kicking the bucket. I'm sure he had some type of outline also. It was eventually completed by Robert B. Parker. I've heard that some Chandler fans even refused to read it out "respect" for Raymond Candler (see above). It was the Chandler estate that requested that Parker, a Chandler enthusiast, finish the last Philip Marlowe novel.

Directed by Bob Rafelson (Five Easy Pieces (1970), Black Widow (1987), and The Postman Always Rings Twice (1981)). Excellent cinematography was by Stuart Dryburgh, and and beautiful score by Michael Small. The teleplay (it is an HBO film BTW) was written by Tom Stoppard based on the aforementioned book by Robert B. Parker and Raymond Chandler. Stoppard made some changes that work very well. He advanced the time period 3-4 years setting the tale within 19 days between November 3 and November 22 1963 the day of the Kennedy assassination, and that ending date could very well be called the end of what some like to think of as the conservative old school 50's and the dawning of the "Age of Aquarius."

The film stars James Caan (Naked City TV Series (1958–1963), The Godfather (1972), Cinderella Liberty (1973), Dick Tracy (1990)) as Philip Marlowe, Dina Meyer as Laura Parker-Marlowe

David Keith (The Two Jakes (1990)) as Larry Victor/Charles Nichols. Joe Don Baker (Charley Varrick (1973)) as P.J. Parker, Tom Bower (River's Edge (1986), The Killer Inside Me (2010)) as Lt. Arnie Burns, Julia Campbell as Miriam "Muffy" Blackstone-Nichols, Brian Cox as Clayton Blackstone, Nia Peeples as Angel, La Joy Far as Lola Faithful, Sam Vlahos (Powwow Highway (1989), Lone Star (1996)), as Eddie Garcia, and Mo Gallini as J.D.

BTW Poodle Springs is of course fictitious. a spoof on Palm Springs but located way farther East and North, somewhere between Baker and Las Vegas and roughly two miles from the California/Nevada border.

The Story

First day back from his honeymoon Marlowe is lured to a crime scene by a phoney call from a radio phone from Paul Krauss another P.I. asking for some help on a stakeout down in San Pedro, berth 60.

He tell's Marlowe that he's driving a fire engine red '62 Ford Thunderbird convertible. Marlowe hears two shots over the phone. He calls his pal Detective Lieutenant Arnie Burns on LAPD and reports a possible homicide. Marlowe hops in his 1957 Plymouth Plaza gets to the waterfront finds the red rag top.

Inside the car is Krauss. Inside his head is a slug. He's looking through Krauss' wallet and notebook when Burns shows up. Marlowe tells him the story. The homicide squad arrives and starts investigating.

Marlowe: Hey you find the other slug?
LAPD Detective: There's just one entry.
Marlowe: You sure?
LAPD Captain: Something troubling you Marlowe?
Marlowe: Yea there were two shots.
LAPD Captain: Tell me again how you know?
Marlowe: I was counting...

Marlowe is arrested when the cops tell him Krauss couldn't have made the call. All radio calls go through an operator and the last call Krauss made was last night.

Marlowe immediately finds out how strong political pull really is when he's suddenly released when some brass on the LAPD finds out he's P.J. Parker's son-in-law. However once the brass splits his buddy Arnie, who doesn't want anybody to think he rolled over for P.J. Parker, has Marlowe handcuffed again and still sent to a holding cell until his wife and her law partners get him out.

From the name and address he found in Krauss' notebook Marlowe checks out a photographer named Larry Victor. He's not in his office so Marlowe jimmy's the lock on the back door and snoops around. He doesn't get far. Larry Victor come in through the back door of his office.

Larry Victor: Any idea what breaking and entering can get you?
Marlowe: One to five in Soledad...

Marlowe questions Larry after identifying himself as a private eye. Larry tells him that he doesn't know why his name was in Krauss' address notebook. Larry gets a phone call and Marlowe splits. But he circles around the hall and sneaks back in through the front door to listen to the conversation. He finds out that Victor is going to meet someone at Sam's Hof Brau at 9:00PM.


Other Films / The Grey Fox (1982)
« on: August 24, 2019, 09:21:09 PM »
Director: Phillip Borsos. Writer: John Hunter,  Cinematography by
Frank Tidy, Music by Michael Conway Baker. Filmed in British Columbia and Washington State.

Stars: Richard Farnsworth, Jackie Burroughs, Ken Pogue,

Needs it's own discussion page and a place on the American Western list.  Just caught the first 15 minutes on a re-watch until my internet connection crapped out, will watch the rest and put my thoughts down here. I haven't seen it in quite a while.

Well I think it's a chromecast problem. I got to the halfway point then it got tiresome. Shut it off. A pretty good Western, in the McCabe & Mrs. Miller vein. 

Other Films / The Long Rope (1961)
« on: July 27, 2019, 03:16:45 PM »
Director: William Witney, Writer: Robert Hamner, starring Hugh Marlowe, Alan Hale Jr., Robert J. Wilke. A Mexican is framed for the murder of Wilke's brother, Marlowe is the judge, Hale is the sheriff. 5/10 a good reason why Spaghetti Westerns became so popular.

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