• Forum
  • Archive for the ‘Studio Classics’ Category

    The Keys of the Kingdom

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on July 11th, 2006

    Gregory Peck plays Francis Chisholm. After losing his parents as a young boy, and then his sweetheart (to moral turpitude, it seems), Francis enters the priesthood. His unorthodox ways make him a failure initially, but kindly bishop and mentor Edmund Gwenn sees potential in the man, and sends him off to China to be a missionary. There too, things get off to a rocky start, but a turnaround happens when he saves the son of a local mandarin. His struggles are far from over, but through it all, he remains a triumphantly decent man.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    The River’s Edge

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on July 10th, 2006

    Career criminal Ray Milland shows up at the ranch of Korean vet Anthony Quinn, looking for his old flame, Debra Paget. She is now married to Quinn, but she hasn’t adapted well to country life, still carries a torch for Milland, and is in the very process of leaving Quinn. She and Milland rekindle their romance, and are planning to leave town with the million dollars Milland has just scored. When Milland runs over a state trooper, he forces Quinn to guide them through the wilderness to the Mexican border. A struggle for both survival and Paget’s love ensues.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    The Black Swan

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on July 7th, 2006

    Tyrone Power has been plying his trade as a pirate in the waters near Jamaica. When his former captain becomes the governor of Jamaica, Power goes straight. He has his eye on Maureen O’Hara, who is engaged to a duplicitous aristocrat who is feeding information to unreformed pirate George Sanders (utterly unrecognizable in shaggy red hair and beard). There will be many complications before Power can claim the resisting O’Hara as his own.Compared to the Errol Flynn pirate movies Captain Blood and The Sea Hawk, this one is a bit light on the action, really only getting down to the buckling of swashes in the final act.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Two for the Road

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on October 28th, 2005

    Audrey Hepburn and Albert Finney are a couple whose marriage appears to be reaching its end. They travel through France, which was the scene of so many other memories, and they (and we) experience, through interlocking flashbacks, the history of their relationship.From the moment the animated credit sequence and Henry Mancini score begin, one is clearly watching a Stanley Donen film from the peak of his career (the presence of Hepburn is yet another reminder of Charade from just a couple of years prior).
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Orchestra Wives

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on October 27th, 2005

    George Montgomery plays the lead trumpet for the “Gene Morrison Band” (the Glen Miller Band). As they set out on tour, he falls in love with, and marries, audience member and big fan Ann Rutherford, much to the displeasure of Lynn Bari. The film then uses the tensions between the various significant others during the tour to cobble together a plot that connects the various musical numbers.From the point of view of plot and character, this is nothing to write home about. But as a record of one of the greats of the Big Band era in action, it is a valuable document, and certainly manages to entertain, if not much else.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Rains Came, The

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Archive Authors on October 26th, 2005

    Synopsis

    India, 1938. Dissolute ex-pat Brit George Brent is amused when old flame Myrna Loy, now married to an aging aristocrat, arrives, but is less amused when he sees her set her sights on Indian doctor Tyrone Power (all done up in dark make-up). Power is so decent that Brent doesn’t want him corrupted. But it soon turns out that Loy really loves Power, as she demonstrates by helping selflessly after the city is savaged by torrential rains, flooding and an earthquake.

    The politics are ve…
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Hush… Hush, Sweet Charlotte

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on July 22nd, 2005

    Synopsis

    In 1927, young Charlotte Hollis’ married lover (a young Bruce Dern) is hacked apart with a meat cleaver, and Charlotte’s blood-stained dress points to her as the murderer. There is never sufficient evidence, however, and she is never charged, but lives on as the subject of endless gossip, slowly going mad. In 1964, Charlotte (Bette Davis) is decaying as much as her house, which is about to be torn down to make way for a highway. She refuses to give up the house or her past, and, convinced th…
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Man in the Gray Flannel Suit, The

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on July 20th, 2005

    Synopsis

    Gregory Peck is having trouble making ends meet in his current job. A more lucrative one opens up, but with it comes many more demands that create more stress in his family. There is also a secret from his past that is coming back to haunt him.

    Eminently watchable, this is also hugely melodramatic, very long, and quite dated. Jennifer Jones as Peck’s wife comes off almost immediately as an intolerable shrew, berating her husband for lack of ambition and complaining about the suppos…
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    In Old Chicago

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on July 19th, 2005

    Synopsis

    Mother O’Leary and her brood arrive in Chicago just as it is beginning to transform into a metropolis. Her sons grow up to become the amoral Dion (Tyrone Power), who never misses a bet and hooks up with the similarly canny cabaret performer Belle (Alice Faye), and the idealistic lawyer Jack (Don Ameche). Betraying political boss Brian Donlevy, Power arranges for his brother to become mayor, but then finds himself in the targeting sights of Ameche’s reforms. The family feud builds to the nigh…
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Anna and the King of Siam

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on June 30th, 2005

    Synopsis

    Strong-willed Englishwoman Irene Dunne (the Anna of the title) arrives at the court of King Rex Harrison to teach his wives and 67 children. The clash of cultures is immediate, with the very British Anna refusing to bend to the more outlandish demands of her new surroundings, and Harrison himself torn between modernity and tradition.

    The 1946 film is something of a cultural relic itself, now, and is something of a postcolonialist’s nightmare, what with constant references to the “h…
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (1)

    Razor’s Edge, The

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on June 16th, 2005

    Synopsis

    Society belle Gene Tierney is in love with the dashing but penniless Tyrone Power, much to the displeasure of her snobbish uncle Clifton Webb (turning in another of his signature bitchy roles). Tierney wants Power to settle down and earn a good living in order to keep her in the manner to which she is accustomed, but Power needs to find some meaning in life, and he heads off to find enlightenment, first in Paris, later in India. Tierney doesn’t wait for him, and marries millionaire John Payn…
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Best of Everything, The

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on May 6th, 2005

    

    Synopsis

    The setting is a top New York publishing house, and our central characters are three womenbeginning their careers at the bottom of the secretarial ladder. Hope Lange is the smart one witha will, who might make a first-class editor. Diane Baker is the naive innocent, doomed to bepreyed on. Suzy Parker wants to dump the office pool for acting, and she begins a difficultrelationship with theatre director Louis Jourdan. Meanwhile, there is tyrannical editor JoanCrawford (whose …
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Return to Peyton Place

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on January 25th, 2005

    

    Synopsis

    More sordidness comes to light in the town of Peyton Place. Carol Lynley publishes a bookthat features a thinly disguised version of the town, and exposing the hypocrisies doesn’t earnher any friends. Off to the Big Apple, she becomes more friendly than perhaps she should withthe publisher (Jeff Chandler). Mother From Hell Mary Astor tries to destroy her son’s marriageto Luciana Paluzzi, and so it goes.

    The star wattage isn’t as strong as the first film (no Lana Tur…
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Leave Her to Heaven

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on January 24th, 2005

    

    Synopsis

    Cornel Wilde, a writer with a disabled younger brother, meets the gorgeous Gene Tierneyon a train, and it’s love at first sight. At least, on his side of the equation. For her, it’s moreobsession at first sight (and this because Wilde looks just like her excessively beloved — andlately departed — daddy). After a whirlwind courtship and marriage, they appear to settle down tohappily married life, but Tierney is ferociously jealous of anyone who might be taking Wilde’satten…
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Letter to Three Wives, A

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on January 22nd, 2005

    

    Synopsis

    Jeanne Crain, Linda Darnell and Ann Sothern are three wives in an upper-middle-classneighbourhood. Just as they head off on an outing with a group of children, they receive a letterfrom the narrator (a silken-voiced Celeste Holm) that she has left town with one of theirhusbands. Which one? Unable to get home until the end of the day, the three women must waitand wonder, and in flashback we see the strains in each of their marriages. Crain is the formerfarmgirl who doesn’t f…
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (1)

    How to Steal a Million

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on November 21st, 2004

    

    Synopsis

    Audrey Hepburn is the long-suffering daughter of incorrigible art forger Hugh Griffith. Whena phony Cellini sculpture Griffith has loaned to a museum is going to be subject to anauthenticity test, Hepburn decides to save her father by stealing their own statue. She enlists theaid of Peter O’Toole, whom she believes to be a professional burglar. The stage is set for anelaborate heist at the highly secure museum, not to mention a little bit of romance along theway.


    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Three Coins in the Fountain

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on November 3rd, 2004

    

    Synopsis

    This is the tale of three young American women in Rome, and the men who romance them.The recently arrived Maggie McNamara sets her cap for aristocrat-with-a-reputation LouisJourdan. Jean Peters, who is supposed to be heading back to the States soon, is drawn againsther better judgment into a relationship with kindly translator Rossano Brazzi (they work at thesame office, and the rules are strict about such things). And Dorothy McGuire is secretary toprickly writer Clifton W…
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Three Faces of Eve, The

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on October 4th, 2004

    

    Synopsis

    Psychiatrist Lee J. Cobb is visited by Joanne Woodward and husband David Wayne. She ishaving spells during which she cannot remember what she gets up to. It turns out that she has amultiple personality disorder, and when repressed, demure housewife Eve White fades out ofthe picture, teasing minx Eve Black steps out. Hubby, who is neither the most sympathetic northe smartest cookie going, cannot understand what’s going on, but Cobb does his best to help.Woodward’s wife spira…
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Alexander’s Ragtime Band

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on August 20th, 2004

    

    Synopsis

    Tyrone Power comes from a good family and a has a fine future as a concert violinist, but hedreams of leading a band. A chance encounter in a bar leads to the formation of Alexander’sRagtime Band, with the brassy Alice Faye as singer. Power and Faye are at it hammer and tongs,so you know they’ll wind up falling in love, and so they do. But the road they must travel is notan easy one, as Faye is hired away from the band to Broadway, and Power is recruited into thearmy just i…
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (1)

    Zorba the Greek

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on July 26th, 2004

    

    Synopsis

    Repressed, timid writer Alan Bates arrives in Crete with the goal of re-opening a mine leftto him by his father. On the way to the small village where he will live, he hooks up with theexuberant Zorba (Anthony Quinn, who, as an American of Irish and Mexican extraction, is nomore Greek than Bates). Bates puts Quinn in charge of the mine, and Quinn sets himself themission of teaching Bates how to take risks in life.

    The broad arc of the story — repressed Anglo-Saxon …
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (1)

    Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, The

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on June 14th, 2004

    

    Synopsis

    Maggie Smith is Miss Jean Brodie, history teacher at the Marcia Blaine School for Girls in1930′s Edinburgh. Flashy, charismatic, flamboyantly romantic and toweringly arrogant, shegathers around herself a small group of girls who, willing acolytes, follow her everywhere. TheShe is perpetually at war with headmistress Celiea Johnson, has had an affair with married artteacher Robert Stephens (who is still obsessed with her), and is currently dallying with naivemusic teacher Go…
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Desk Set

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on April 15th, 2004

    

    Synopsis

    Spencer Tracy arrives in the research department of the “Federal Broadcasting Company”to install a computer. He is sworn to secrecy by the president of the network, however, and soresearch head Katherine Hepburn and her co-workers assume they are to be made redundant.Sparks are clearly flying between her and Tracy, however, even if this romantic tension remainsvery much an undercurrent to their witty banter. Also on the scene is Gig Young, Hepburn’srather callow and thought…
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Grapes of Wrath, The

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on March 15th, 2004

    

    Synopsis

    Henry Fonda is Tom Joad, returning home after serving four years in prison for killing aman. He arrives to find the farms of Oklahoma devastated by drought, and all the familiesdispossessed of their land. He and his family become part of the great migration from the DustBowl to the Eden of California. There they face exploitation, persecution and misery, andFonda’s rage at the injustice grows.

    John Steinbeck’s enormous novel found a stunning screen incarnation in th…
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (1)

    Peyton Place

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on February 13th, 2004

    

    Synopsis

    Welcome to Peyton Place, a charming New England town, and as picture-perfect a postcardof the 1950s as you could hope to fine. Except for all the rape, incest, and murder, that is. LanaTurner is the repressed mother trying to protect her daughter from the real world. Lee Philips isthe dashing new principle who courts Turner. Arthur Kennedy is the drunken janitor withunhealthy designs on his step-daughter. Russ Tamblyn is the quiet boy with the domineeringmother, and he year…
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Diary of Anne Frank, The

    Posted in Disc Reviews by David Annandale on January 22nd, 2004

    

    Synopsis

    During the German occupation of Holland, two Jewish families take refuge in an Amsterdamattic. After some months, they are joined by a dentist. The tensions and friendships ebb and flowin this confined space, and the two-year period is chronicled in her diary by Anne, who is thirteenwhen the hiding beings.

    Given that the film is scripted by Frances Goodrich and Albert Hackett, from their Broadwayplay, and the film’s locations are essentially limited to this one set,…
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (3)
    CSS Template by RamblingSoul | Tomodachi theme by Theme Lab