Crawdaddy's "Random Thoughts" about Home Video, Film & TV

Mark-P

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This morning I watched "Hellfire" (1949) western from Republic that I recently bought in HD from iTunes. A weird western for sure, but I was thoroughly entertained and captivated by Marie Windsor. With this film, I can see why Eddie Muller thought so highly of her. She really looked in TruColor with her bedroom eyes. I'm glad I bought this blindly for $4.99 which is still the current pricing. I don't think this has ever been on disc and the video presentation is very good for the most part as it's another film title that Paramount has recently done some work on.



I got around to watching this today. I love the concept of a woman gunfighter. This appeared to be the 2-color version of Trucolor before they upgraded to the 3-color variety. The ending was just a bit too religious for my tastes, though.
 

Robert Crawford

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All "War" films done realistically are basically "Anti-War" films as war is a horrible and destructive option. As William Tecumseh Sherman famously stated in his below quote, "War is Hell' and should be the last option. I watched on 4K/UHD disc the following "Anti-War" film title. Great video and audio presentations. I've seen this film many times and read the book, but it's still a rough film viewing.

I am tired and sick of war. Its glory is all moonshine. It is only those who have neither fired a shot nor heard the shrieks and groans of the wounded who cry aloud for blood, for vengeance, for desolation. War is hell.
 
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Robert Crawford

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No offense to the following actors nominated for Best Actor at the 1950 Academy of Awards, but not one of those performances are on equal ground to what Cagney accomplished in "White Heat". At that time, I don't think audiences nor the industry including film critics realized what a great characterization that Cagney did with Cody Jarrett. Here it is, 70 years later and it's easiest the most memorable lead acting performance from that year and it's not even close. I love me some John Wayne and consider his Sgt. Stryker among his best performances. The same with Douglas and Peck in their respective films and the same for Crawford in "All the King's Men". However, Cagney in "White Heat" beats them all in my opinion as one of the most iconic and greatest acting performances in film history.

Eddie made a couple of points that I didn't realize about "White Heat". I'll discuss them later.

BRODERICK CRAWFORD
All the King's Men
NOMINEES
KIRK DOUGLAS
Champion
GREGORY PECK
Twelve O'Clock High
RICHARD TODD
The Hasty Heart
JOHN WAYNE
Sands of Iwo Jima
 
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Matt Hough

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As I mentioned earlier, I agree heartily with you. Cagney certainly would have been my choice for the award, and to not even be nominated is a big ol' slap in the face.
 
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Scott Merryfield

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Yes, Cagney gave an iconic performance in White Heat. I'll definitely have to check out Muller's comments via the TCM app. I have the BD of the film, so no need to watch the actual movie via the app, though.
 

Robert Crawford

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A first time viewing of "Borderline" (1950) with Fred MacMurray, Claire Trevor and Raymond Burr. Guess which actor plays the baddie in this film?;) Viewing on the TCM app.

 

Hollywoodaholic

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White Heat. Great action film. Basically the equivalent of a summer tentpole film in today's market (but with the villain as the star). I don't believe I've seen this since watching it as a kid when it aired on TV in the 60's. Hey, it was old back then and kids didn't do Noir. Though we did do black and white.
 

Robert Crawford

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A first time viewing of "Borderline" (1950) with Fred MacMurray, Claire Trevor and Raymond Burr. Guess which actor plays the baddie in this film?;) Viewing on the TCM app.

No question it has its silly parts, but I have to say I enjoyed this film and part of that is I'm a big Claire Trevor fan. Leonard Maltin is right this is an odd film. I see this also available on Amazon Video, but the TCM transfer looks better to me.
 

Robert Crawford

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White Heat. Great action film. Basically the equivalent of a summer tentpole film in today's market (but with the villain as the star). I don't believe I've seen this since watching it as a kid when it aired on TV in the 60's. Hey, it was old back then and kids didn't do Noir. Though we did do black and white.
I can't count how many times I've seen this film. Like you I first viewed it on TV in the 60's as it would play quite often on NYC TV stations. Also, I've seen it many times over the years through different video formats as I practically have the movie memorized from beginning to end. It's such a great film!
 
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bujaki

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I can't count how many times I've seen this film. Like you I first viewed it on TV in the 60's as it would play quite often on NYC TV stations. Also, I've seen it many times over the years through different video formats as I practically have the movie memorized from beginning to end. It's such a great film!
I too saw White Heat as a child on a TV broadcast. I saw it often that way. Later I saw a 35mm nitrate print from the Warner's archive that MoMA showed during its Raoul Walsh retro. That may have been the last time I saw the film...some 40 years ago...
 
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Hollywoodaholic

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There's some themes or moments in White Heat that definitely slipped by our tender young minds the first time we viewed it in the family room on the tube TV: I'm thinking particularly about the scene where Cody actually accepts Verna back after she betrayed him with Big Ben and they get drunk together and she's all over Cody again kissing him in front of Pardo and he carries her up the stairs and away for an obvious carnal renunion. Our parents obviously got that part. (And our mothers no doubt thinking, "What a slut," in between admiring her wardrobe and mink).
 

B-ROLL

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There's some themes or moments in White Heat that definitely slipped by our tender young minds the first time we viewed it in the family room on the tube TV: I'm thinking particularly about the scene where Cody actually accepts Verna back after she betrayed him with Big Ben and they get drunk together and she's all over Cody again kissing him in front of Pardo and he carries her up the stairs and away for an obvious carnal renunion. Our parents obviously got that part. (And our mothers no doubt thinking, "What a slut," in between admiring her wardrobe and mink).
Not to poop on today's holiday ... I hate ta tell ya but
whiteheat5[1].jpg
Ma's Dead ... :cool:
One of the most amazing performances ever captured on film ... from a "song and dance man" no less ...
 

Matt Hough

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I was thankfully able to watch Eddie's before and after comments along with the film itself on the TCM app (yeah, I couldn't help myself; I enjoy the movie so much). I was surprised that Virginia Mayo didn't get some words, especially since she and Cagney were reunited the very next year in The West Point Story.
 

Robert Crawford

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I was thankfully able to watch Eddie's before and after comments along with the film itself on the TCM app (yeah, I couldn't help myself; I enjoy the movie so much). I was surprised that Virginia Mayo didn't get some words, especially since she and Cagney were reunited the very next year in The West Point Story.
On the Blu-ray's audio commentary I thought it was mentioned that Cagney was impressed by Mayo and requested she appear in his next film which was "The West Point Story". Also, after the movie on TCM they had an archive excerpt in which Mayo talked about how Cagney had her work with his dance instructor on a dance sequence in that movie and how much she enjoyed working with Cagney. That archive piece looked like it was recorded in the 1990's.
 

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