The Late, Late, Late Show

Discussion in 'Visual Arts' started by ando here, Feb 19, 2020.

  1. ando here

    ando here Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    new york, ny
    Haha. No, I too grew up in the New York metro area and I don't recall an actual Late, Late, Late show. The thread title is partly tongue-in-cheek. I simply meant to refer to obscure but great black and white films that used to air on extremely late tv programming (after all the variety/talk shows ended) - stuff you'd never see during prime time but material that deserved at least a single viewing. The trademark is the least interesting aspect of films that would show up in this time slot, imo. But a Google image search brings up some interesting (and long forgotten) results!
     
  2. JozefK

    JozefK Forum Resident

    Location:
    Dixie
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    No Love for Johnnie is a 1961 British drama film in CinemaScope directed by Ralph Thomas. It was based on the book of the same name by the Labour Member of Parliament Wilfred Fienburgh, and stars Peter Finch. It depicts the disillusionment and cynicism of a rebellious leftist Labour MP, who seeks escape in a relationship with a younger woman.

    Finch won two film awards for this performance - one a BAFTA, and the other the Silver Bear for Best Actor at the 11th Berlin International Film Festival.​

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  3. ando here

    ando here Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    new york, ny
    Darn You, JK! And thanks. :)

    Now I'm torn between watching your pick and this new upload by The British Film Board of what The New York Times called "The best 'Vanya' in English we're likely to see". (The BBC film with Freddie King and Anthony Hopkins in pretty good, imo, too.) Laurence Olivier's 1963 film of Anton Chekhov's Uncle Vanya.

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    I first caught it a long time ago during a late night on some cable channel and sat riveted for about an hour (wasn't from the beginning). Now I can see it in its entirety. Not sure how long, though. Neither this nor the Finch flick are likely to stick around!

     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2020
  4. ando here

    ando here Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    new york, ny
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    The Mudlark (1951, Negulesco)

    More British company: Alec Guinness is the draw for me in this one. An orphan/street urchin finds a cameo of Queen Victoria in the mud on the bank of the Thames River. Determined to meet her he sets off to Windsor Castle. Guinness is Disraeli. Irene Dunn, Victoria.

     
  5. JozefK

    JozefK Forum Resident

    Location:
    Dixie
    Murder, Inc. (1960)

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    Modestly produced true-life gangster drama, shot on location in NYC using local talent.

    Two performances stand out. The little-remembered stage actor David J. Stewart is icily memorable as Lepke. He probably would have become a name character man if he had not died during surgery in 1966, age only 51. This would be his best-ever role.

    But the film is definitely stolen by a young actor named Peter Falk, as sadistic hit man Abe Reles. This is the role that lifted Falk out of off-Broadway and into Hollywood. He even got an Oscar nomination for best supporting actor.

    Peter Falk as Abe "Kid Twist" Reles.

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    Lepke (David J. Stewart) congratulates Reles on a hit.

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    Stuart Whitman and Peter Falk play chess between shots

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  6. JozefK

    JozefK Forum Resident

    Location:
    Dixie
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    City of Fear (1959) - IMDb

    A vicious killer escapes from San Quentin with a cannister of what he believes to be heroin but is actually a radioactive substance that threatens all Los Angeles​

     
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  7. ando here

    ando here Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    new york, ny
    Oh wow, never heard of this one. Looking forward to it! Thanks. :-popcorn:
     
  8. ando here

    ando here Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    new york, ny
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    Another Man's Poison (1951, Irving Rapper)

    Bette Davis is a bestselling mystery writer who murders her husband and tries to frame an interloper (her husband in real life at the time, Gary Merrill). Needed a better director but Davis and Merrill make it work.

     
  9. ando here

    ando here Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    new york, ny
    Tonight's very late selection will forgo YouTube for the Internet Archive, which also streams a great collection of oldies you don't surf past very often. Like clockwork I've caught Orson Welles' Citizen Kane (1941) playing somewhere on tv every four or five years - and, imo, the dead of the night is always the best time to watch it. Happy viewing!

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    the film
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2020
  10. ando here

    ando here Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    new york, ny
    No one actor dominates this sword (or dagger) and sandals flick. It's a great ensemble with a capable director in Joe Mankiewicz. And one of the best Shakespeare films of the last century.

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    Julius Caesar (1953)
    HD streamer
     
  11. JozefK

    JozefK Forum Resident

    Location:
    Dixie
    The film has a major flaw in the disappointing Caesar of Louis Calhern. An MGM contract player, Calhern was great in the right role (Executive Suite), but not quite right as Caesar, lacking the... what? Theatrical flamboyance? Larger-than-life personality. Something just wasn't there.

    I've sometimes played a game where I recast the role from actors of the period. Gielgud is already tied up with Cassius. Ralph Richardson surprisingly doesn't seem right to me either, maybe he's too middle class. Olivier seems better, if he'd been willing.

    Other possibilities:
    Jose Ferrer
    Orson Welles
    Rex Harrison -- he was about 45 at the time. Of course he later played the character superbly in Cleopatra
    Jack Hawkins
    Noel Coward played a different Caesar in a 1967 Hallmark Hall of Fame TV production of Androcles And The Lion (Norman Wisdom was Androcles) that I hope to get to see some day.
     
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  12. JozefK

    JozefK Forum Resident

    Location:
    Dixie
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    We learn the backstories of prisoners as they plan a break.

    Directed by Jules Dassin
    Written by Richard Brooks

    The template for the modern prison action movie; the last section is virtually one long shoot 'em up.

    Critical analysts have gone over the film (the prison represents the dull office jobs-suburban monotony that WWII vets were once again trapped in). Although the film sealed Burt Lancaster's stardom, the true sensation at the time of release was diminutive Hume Cronyn, cast against type as a sadistic prison guard (representing both "lesser" men who took over jobs during the war and the still present threat of fascism) with a not-very-repressed homosexual streak.

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  13. ando here

    ando here Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    new york, ny
    Agreed; but Calhern had just the right touch of indignant smugness to help persuade an audience that he was too inflexible to rule with justice. Mason, I'm afraid, as Brutus is not terribly effective in persuading us with the justice of the senator's cause with his performance.

    Gielgud is spot on (imo).
     
  14. ando here

    ando here Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    new york, ny
    Legendary. Have never watched it, though. Thanks.
     
  15. ando here

    ando here Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    new york, ny
    Catch it while it's up. I forgot that Shaw wrote the play on which it's based. Thanks for the reference.
     
  16. JozefK

    JozefK Forum Resident

    Location:
    Dixie
    Re that 1952 film version:

    1. RKO boss Howard Hughes had Nicholas Ray shoot a racy "vestal virgin bathing beauties" scene to spice up the Shavian proceedings. The British creative team was infuriated and the sequence was cut from the release print.

    2. Frank Sinatra was originally cast as Androcles, but this was nixed by Hughes (the two had a longstanding grudge, possibly an Ava Gardner-related matter).

    3. At one point the role of Androcles was offered to... Harpo Marx (a favorite of Shaw's, FWIW). In fact a legend grew that Harpo actually shot a few weeks until TPTB realized a non-speaking Androcles wouldn't work. Although Harpo's son denies his father worked on the film, the A&TL Wiki page has a variation of the "shot a few weeks" story.
     
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  17. ando here

    ando here Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    new york, ny
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    Humoresque (1946, Jean Negulesco)

    I'm fairly certain I came in on the middle of this one on some equally restless night. Joan Crawford plays an alcoholic New York socialite who sponsors, then falls in love with the young, tempermental violinist, John Garfield. In retrospect, it's all pretty improbable but the two, supported by the trenchant wit of Oscar Levant and others make it go. The end is hokey but the ride is fun if you're a fan of the two stars. The music, featuring everything from Georges Bizet to Cole Porter, stands out the most, with the legendary Isaac Stern providing the actual fiddling behind Garfield's bow-synching.

    the film

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    A Delicate Balance
    (1973, Tony Richardson)

    Is it an alcoholic or a alcoholic? Another character deep in the sauce is featured in the 1973 film version of Edward Albee's play, A Delicate Balance. More snappy dialogue and manner masking - and sometimes revealing - serious psychological dysfunction. A winner here.
     
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2020
  18. ando here

    ando here Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    new york, ny
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    The Blood of Jesus (1941, Spencer Williams)

    Known for starring in the (near minstrel) Amos & Andy show, Spencer Williams stars and directs this story of a young woman who leaves the Old Southern Black Church for the big city and encounters a fateful crossroads. Made on a shoestring budget it's neverthless a nice snapshot of a time long gone.

     
  19. ando here

    ando here Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    new york, ny
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    The Trial (1962, Orson Welles)

    I've only seen bad prints - even on late night TV - of the Welles classic adaption of Kafka's novel. But this copy looks stunning!

     
  20. ando here

    ando here Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    new york, ny
    Welles' Q&A on The Trial:

     
  21. JozefK

    JozefK Forum Resident

    Location:
    Dixie
    [​IMG]

    The first filming of the story that would later be musicalized as Carousel. Despite superb expressionistic sets and evocatively shadowy cinematography, the film for the most part remains stodgily stagebound. Also Charles Farrell, with the weak, nasal voice that would doom him in talkies, is far from ideal in the title role. There is however one great sequence, when the Heavenly Express train arrives for our hero. If you only want to see that, FF to 1:07:25.

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    Fritz Lang made a superior version in France only four years later, with a much more comfortable Charles Boyer in the title role. I sometimes recommend aspiring movie buffs watch the Borzage version, then the Lang to compare and contrast. The Lang is in French, but you can easily follow the story once you've seen the earlier version (or for that matter, Carousel).
     
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  22. aphexacid

    aphexacid Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Chicago
    This thread is exactly what I need! I love all these classic movies, I’m taking notes and making bookmarks!
     
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  23. JozefK

    JozefK Forum Resident

    Location:
    Dixie
    Per Wiki the story was previously filmed in 1921 by Metro, about a Coney Island barker:

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    "An Hungarian play"... Note the woman director: June Mathis was quite a power at Metro for awhile -- she is credited with discovering Valentino; in fact, they are interred next to each other.

    Apparently a print of the film survives in the BFI.

    This version may have been inspired by the very successful Broadway revival of the same year, starring Joseph Schildkraut and Eva LaGallienne:

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    Again per Wiki: Michael Curtiz had begun a version in Molnar's native Hungary in 1919, but the political turmoil of the period forced him to flee the country and the film was abandoned.
     
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  24. ando here

    ando here Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    new york, ny
    Thanks.
     
  25. ando here

    ando here Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    new york, ny
    [​IMG]
    Dead Man (1995, Jim Jarmusch)
    the film

     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2020

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