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Saturday, September 24, 2016

PARTY GIRL 1958 (TCM VIEWING)

A film noir in color.

Robert Taylor is Thomas Farrell a top Chicago lawyer who works for the top mobster named Rico Angelo. Farrell is always getting Rico's men out of murder raps simply by outwitting the juries.

He is also a very bitter and lonely man who wants more out of life than the human sewage he deals with. Along comes beautiful dancer Vicki Gaye played by gorgeous Cyd Charisse and Farrell finds a reason to live again.

Vicki finally gets Farrell to have his crippled hip fixed and get out of the mob life forever. This doesn't sit well with Rico and he blackmails Thomas into staying on.

Things get out of hand as the killings increase in Chicago due to tension between the crime families and the attempts of the Government to get indictments against the mobsters. Rico and Farrell finally meets in a spectacular showdown involving bullets and acid.

Lee J. Cobb plays Rico Angelo in a way that always makes me think of Al Capone and that's fine with me. The rest of the cast also includes John Ireland, Kent Smith, Myrna Hansen and David Opatoshu. Recommended.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO....

Stephanie McMahon is 40, Bert I. Gordon is 94, and April Hunter is 45.

Friday, September 23, 2016

FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE 1963 (MGM) BLU-RAY

Another excellent James Bond film.

Sean Connery returns as Bond in this wonderful film that finds Bond allowing himself to be taken into an assassination plot in order to retrieve a Soviet encryption device.

It seems SPECTRE has stolen the device and this sets Bond in motion to get the device back at any cost. He is helped by a stunning Russian beauty named Tatiana played by Daniela Bianchi.

This movie concentrates more on the espionage part of 007's job and while it is more low key, it makes for a damn good film. There are several major highlights in the film including a great boat chase and helicopter attack.

Lotte Lenya is a hired killer named Rosa Klebb who has a dagger in her show who has the final showdown with Bond and Robert Shaw is excellent as Grant, an international killer who is just a full of tricks as Bond.

There is also a great brawl scene on the Orient Express. This is a film that ranks as one of the best of the entire series. Daniela Bianchi will always be one of the most beautiful women to ever appear in a Bond film because once seen she is never forgotten.

The Blu-ray disc it top notch and full of extras and so this is a no brainer. See it or see it again.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO.....

Paul Petersen is 71,Tom Lester is 79, and John Ericson is 90.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

SEVEN GOLDEN MEN 1965 (SINISTER CINEMA)

Very odd but enjoyable crime film.

Gorgeous Rosanna Podesta is the woman who has helped mastermind a huge bank robbery of several thousand pounds of gold bars and she has hired a skilled group of thieves to get it out of the vault.

The gold depository is the actual target and the plan actually works until it's time to transport it. Then things start to get out of hand and the shipment is mis-sent to another location.

The crooks manage to get the gold bars back, but then the plan takes another turn for the worst. I won't give it away, but this is a fun film and a forgotten gem in Italian film making.

The widescreen print from Sinister is beautiful and if you like 60's Italian crime dramas you might like this. It is hard to find and it took forever to find a good print, that is until Sinister started carrying it.

Highly recommended little film that really should have more exposure. Oh, and did I mention that Podesta looks hotter than hell?

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO.....

Toni Basil is 73, Catherine Oxenberg is 55, Joan Jett is 58, Shari Belafonte is 62, and Debby Boone is 60.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

SAVAGES FROM HELL 1968 (SINISTER CINEMA)

A really bizarre biker flick from K. Gordon Murray.

Joseph Mawra directed this grubby little film shot in Naples, Florida.

The leader of a biker gang falls for a young woman in a small town and will do anything to have her as his.

This film has to be seen to be believed. There are some fight scenes that a sight to behold, and most of the acting is well, just not really that good.

I have to admit I did get caught up in the story, so the acting really didn't take away from the enjoyment of the picture. Like most films shot on a regional basis, this really captures the flavor of Naples in 1968.

It has no stars in it and that also adds to the appeal for me. Something about that makes it all the better. The print quality from Sinister isn't the greatest, but again, that only adds to the enjoyment of the film. It has a REAL grindhouse look to it.

I would recommend this to die hard biker movie fans, such as I am.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Stephen King is 69, Yvonne Wilder is 79, Rebecca Balding is 61, Cynthia Hull is 69 and Teresa Gimpera is 80.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

TENSION 1949 (TCM VIEWING)

A fine and underrated film noir.

Richard Basehart stars as a mild mannered drug store clerk named Warren Quimby who is married to a shrew named Claire played by the wonderful Audrey Totter.

Claire falls for another man and leaves her husband who at first wants to kill her and her new husband, but decides not to after he meets and falls for a beautiful woman named Mary played by Cyd Charisse.

However, Claire's new lover ends up dead anyway and she and Warren are accused of the crime. Police Lt. Collier Bonnabel (Barry Sullivan) and Lt. Gonsales (William Conrad) investigate an try to snap up the real killer.

This is a good little film noir and Audrey Totter steals the entire movie. Her character is cold and devoid of any feelings whatsoever. She is the perfect opposite of Basehart and it works perfectly.

John Barry directed this well made film and I wish things like this were available on Blu-ray, but we take what we can get. If you get a chance to see this film, do so.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO....

Sophia Loren is 82, Asia Argento is 41, and Brinke Stevens is 62.

Monday, September 19, 2016

THE CONJURING 2 2016 (WARNER) BLU-RAY

One of the best sequels I have ever seen.

Another great movie from the case files of Lorraine and Ed Warren. This is based on the Enfield haunting of 1977. It was referred to as the "English Amityville".

Patrick Wilson and Vera Farminga return as Ed and Lorraine Warren. They travel to England to help a family that is living in a very haunted flat in a part of London.

The Hodgson family finds themselves terrorized by moving objects and a young daughter that is seemingly possessed by a demonic force.

James Wan directed this film as solidly as the first one and it really throws out the fright. There are a lot of scenes that will make you jump, especially those involving a demonic nun and "The Crooked Man" which is a sight to behold.

There is minimal use of CGI here and that is always a good thing. In case you haven't seen this I won't give too much away, but I can't recommend this enough. Sequels are very rarely good or as good as the original, but this is an exception to that rule.

The Blu-ray is exceptional and has some very interesting extras about the film and the real life case it is based on. One of the best releases of the year so far.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO....

David McCallum is 83, Adam West is 88, Randolph Mantooth is 71, Victoria Silvstedt is 42, Natalie Eva Marie is 32, and Bobbie Bresee is 69.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO....

Frankie Avalon is 77, and Veronica Carlson is 72.

THE CONJURING 2013 (WARNER) BLU-RAY

As most of you know, this to me is a modern day classic amongst horror films.

Ed and Lorraine Warren are the two most famous investigators of hauntings in the world. This film takes one of their cases and shows us what happened.

Ed (Patrick Wilson and Lorraine (Vera Farminga) come to the aid of a family whose home is host to dark forces. This is 1971 and took place in Rhode Island. The family is terrorized by odd noises, ghosts that appear and disappear, and physical contact by being pulled out of bed by unseen hands.

Directed by James Wan, this is an excellent thriller. I reviewed this a couple of years ago and this is just a short update for the Blu-ray.

If you haven't already seen this film, you should. It was an enormous success and did spawn a sequel which I will be reviewing here hopefully tomorrow.

The cast is top notch and the film really manages to frighten without being gory.