What's on your Daily Viewing List?

BobO'Link

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Sunday and yesterday brought:
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I mainly watched these because I'd purchased a box set with all 4 titles (and then they release a 5th). I felt like I was watching the same movie over and over. By the time I got to "World" it had become so predictable and cliche that it held no suspense or surprise at all (in all fairness it had done that by the time the original ended). It all felt like a basic rewrite of the first movie. I must admit I was surprised the Pterodactyls (at least I'm assuming that's what they were) flying off at the end of "III" didn't set up a colony which started the events of "World" - then "World" also ends with a group of them flying off (although many of those in "World" appear to be mash ups of several species). I've read the synopsis for "Fallen Kingdom" and it sounds like another predictable rehash - a real snooze of a film.

At least I also watched these:
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Just The H Man on that double feature set. Battle in Outer Space will be some time this week.

I have the older DVD of The H Man and the BR from Mill Creek is an improvement (has both cuts of the film, US and Japanese). It's slow to get going, you think it's nothing but a crime/noir film for a half hour or so, but once it does it's pretty fun. It's 2nd half is reminiscent of The Blob but actually preceded that one by a few months.

The BR of Disney's The Black Hole looks very good and shows the seams in many of the visuals (lots and lots of bleeding mattes I'd never seen before). Surprisingly I didn't find the "comic" robots to be quite as annoying this time out. They pretty much killed the movie for me the first time I saw it (during its original theatrical release). This is one of those movies I watch for the visuals, which are generally excellent (but many space scenes still don't look as good as those in Star Wars in spite of Disney's computerized camera system being superior to that Lucas used). I chalk that up to Disney's extensive use of painted backgrounds (which are excellent but look like paintings).

Woman on the Moon is more of a romance story than outer space/SF. However, it *does* pioneer, and create, the use of a countdown sequence for launching a rocket and has some innovative visuals. The Kino version is almost 3 hours long.

Golden Voyage of Sinbad is another old favorite.
 
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bujaki

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Monday night:
Shalako (Kino BD) 1968. Dmytrik directs quite a cast: Connery, Bardot (always in astonishing eye makeup), Stephen Boyd, Jack Hawkins, Peter van Eyck, etc., in a Western with some exciting sequences, some gore, and some plot holes. Still, it makes an entertaining time at the movies.
The Uncanny (Severin BD) 1977. A portmanteau film featuring 3 stories in which cats prove that they rule the world. And yes, we knew that. The tales are introduced by Peter Cushing (extremely nervous and fearful around cats), and Ray Milland. The first tale features the delectable, although by this time, quite old, and yet, that voice...Joan Greenwood! Enjoyable film with a great title sequence. The print quality was a bit ragged at times.
The Scalphunters (Kino BD) 1968. Lancaster and Ossie Davis make a great pair in this very enjoyable Western directed by Sydney Pollack. Much ado about a trapper's hides exchanging hands, causing many lives to be lost in the back and forth. Subtle points about race relations before the Civil War. Ossie Davis steals the show.
 

dana martin

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Last Night's Feature Presentation

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subject matter and time frame that this was released does make this an Essential Pre-Code IMO. Hopkins performance is measured nuance through the film, from flirtatious girl to violated woman,; gradually till she has no other choice for the final outcome. The Supplements are greatly informative.
 
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Mike Boone

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Today I'll finish watching a film I only had a chance to see a half hour of yesterday, which is 1955's "Man Without A Star", on Blu-ray. It's a pretty good western that I've never seen before, and its cast is headed by one of my favorite actors, the late, great (IMO) Kirk Douglas. So far, judging by the half hour I've seen, Kirk plays a character who's more amiable than many of the types of people he's most well known for having played. To me it seems kind of cool that Mr Douglas displays a sense of humor in the role, which generally, as far as I'd gone into the movie, has the actor adopting a stance that's a little more light hearted than seen in most of the famous star's movies. Though in one of the scenes I'd viewed, soon after Kirk's character meets a man who it appears he'll be able to join in a friendly spirit of cooperation, something the other man says, strikes a nerve in Kirk's character, so viewers get to see a flash of that anger & intensity, for which Mr Douglas was well known for suddenly displaying.

Anyhow, this morning, after I buy and haul the 10 sacks of black mulch (which will make 74 sacks in 4 days) that my wife swears will finally be the LAST ONES I have to worry about (heard that tune a few times, already), then, once that's done, I'll be eager to complete seeing "Man Without A Star".

BTW, I'm only partly serious in saying that one reason that guys, like yours truly, may enjoy westerns featuring shootings and gun play, is that such portrayals help us let off steam, so that we don't want to go out and get some guns ourselves, to then act menacing to nagging wives. Oh well, as comic Denis Leary said: "Yeah sure, life's tough, so get a helmet!"
 

bujaki

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Glorifying the American Girl (Kino BD) 1929. An example of an early musical, not as technically innovative as The Broadway Melody. It covers the same backstage story of romance vs. success on stage. The glory of this disc is that this is the first time that the restored version can be enjoyed. It's complete and it includes all the 2-tone Technicolor sequences. Many shots and sequences were cut for reissue by the Production Code. THE highlight is a performance by Helen Morgan sitting atop a piano (her signature) singing a torch song in her beautiful soprano. One can appreciate what made her a star in Show Boat playing Julie. Recommended for historical reasons. Beautiful presentation.
Wij aka We (Sploitation Films BD) 2018. Eight bored teenagers spend a summer playing games that turn them from curious about sex to sex predators for money. Not an easy film to watch. Male and female full-frontal nudity. Graphic sex, including penetration. I cringed several times at the kids' behavior and rationalization of their actions.
The Buccaneer (HDX VUDU stream) 1938. A De Mille epic featuring a dashing Fredric March as Jean Lafitte in the title role. I hadn't seen this version in a long, long time. I felt the first half dragged a bit, and Franciska Gaal annoyed me. There were several action sequences that were spectacularly staged. I was pleasantly surprised by a brief green-toned sequence when Lafitte's men row their pirogues toward New Orleans. The print is in need of a full restoration since it is riddled with scratches throughout. It took away from Milner's fine cinematography.
Next on the agenda is the 1958 version.
 

BobO'Link

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Last night:
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Spider-man was from a new BR upgrade. I enjoy this movie in spite of things it does that don't fit in comic continuity.

The Mermaid was a first time viewing. It's quite odd and yet quite funny at times. I'll be watching this one again at some point.
 
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bujaki

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Last night:
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Spider-man was from a new BR upgrade. I enjoy this movie in spite of things it does that don't fit in comic continuity.

The Mermaid was a first time viewing. It's quite odd and yet quite funny at times. I'll be watching this one again at some point.
The Mermaid in 3D was quite astonishing!
 

Dave Moritz

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July 15th, 2020 Wednesday

Lord Of The Rings: The Two Towers (Extended Edition)
1080p Blu-ray upconverted to 4K
DTS-HD Master Audio 6.1 upmixed to Auro 7.1

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Finding Dory
4K / Dolby Vision / Disney+
Dolby Atmos

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dana martin

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forgot how laugh out loud funny this is, no the banter isn't Grant and Russel, but it just sings along, and the restoration is an eye opener, as it is a completely different release from the Kino disc. The supplements go into detail on this, as this is what would have been the domestic US release, and the LOC /Kino would have been either the international or UK release.
 

Mike Boone

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Well, as I mentioned the other day (or night) I'm a big fan of the recently passed away, Kirk Douglas.

So I intend to watch an import Blu-ray edition of 1961's "The Last Sunset", a western with Mr Douglas, I've never seen.

That film promises to be at least somewhat interesting due to a couple of factors. The first one is that the movie's script was written by Dalton Trumbo, who scripted the biggest movie hit Mr Douglas starred in: "Spartacus", as well as Trumbo having done the script for the modern western: 1962's "Lonely Are The Brave", which provided Kirk Douglas with the role which became his own personal favorite, among the many characters that he portrayed.

And the other factor which may give "The Last Sunset" another interesting aspect (at least to me) is that the film's music was composed by Ernest Gold, who just a year earlier, had won the Oscar for writing the film score for "Exodus".

Though, while I personally like the "Exodus" score, and even have that film's music soundtrack on CD, if I'd been a member of the motion picture academy that voted to choose the best film score of 1960, rather than choosing the score for "Exodus", I definitely would have voted for Alex North's beautiful, as well as dynamic, score for 1960's "Spartacus".
 

HawksFord

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The Prisoner of Second Avenue (1975) - Last night was our first chance to sit down and really enjoy a movie in awhile. My wife picked this one from our pile of unwatched blu-rays. I had vague memories of seeing it before; she didn't remember it at all. Jack Lemmon and Anne Bancroft are marvelous as a married couple in this adaptation of a Neil Simon dark comedy. Lemmon is great at playing a character who is losing his grip, and Bancroft can communicate so much with her facial expressions. If I have a criticism, it's only that the story may be a little too tightly focused. We don't get much sense of who these characters are outside the events of the film. It is a minor criticism, though. The movie is a lot of fun and really hit the spot after a busy and stressful few days.
 

dana martin

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Morning Matinee

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fascinating, the only thing is that i think the ending may have underestimated is the value of her of what the total combined revenue of her invention is worth; the film states 30 billion. I am assuming that figure is probably double that, after the world wide pandemic, just because of the communications aspect alone, add new products daily incorporating Bluetooth, and it just goes on and on.
 
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Mike Boone

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The Prisoner of Second Avenue (1975) - Last night was our first chance to sit down and really enjoy a movie in awhile. My wife picked this one from our pile of unwatched blu-rays. I had vague memories of seeing it before; she didn't remember it at all. Jack Lemmon and Anne Bancroft are marvelous as a married couple in this adaptation of a Neil Simon dark comedy. Lemmon is great at playing a character who is losing his grip, and Bancroft can communicate so much with her facial expressions. If I have a criticism, it's only that the story may be a little too tightly focused. We don't get much sense of who these characters are outside the events of the film. It is a minor criticism, though. The movie is a lot of fun and really hit the spot after a busy and stressful few days.

Hawks, your mention of Jack Lemmon in "The Prisoner of Second Avenue", had me thinking about my wife and I, about 2 weeks ago, having gotten a big kick out of watching Mr Lemmon and Walter Matthau, in their first teaming together, in Billy Wilder's very funny film, 1966's "The Fortune Cookie". What a loss to movie lovers, and screen comedy, in general, that both of those gentlemen have left this mortal coil!! (The following could only be termed as a MINOR SPOILER, as it involves INFO that's revealed in the FIRST 5 or 10 minutes of the "The Fortune Cookie" Mr Matthau in the role that really put his career on the map, in winning a well deserved Best Supporting Actor Oscar for it, brings us his hilarious creation of "Whiplash Willie", a scheming ambulance chasing lawyer, who convinces his brother-in-law, played by Mr Lemmon, to help him attempt the scamming of an insurance company out of a fortune, after Lemmon's character, a cameraman for CBS, is accidentally bowled over by a Cleveland Browns football player, in the opening minutes of the movie. (But what's really NOT SO FUNNY, at least to a Die-Hard Cleveland Browns fan (which I'm not) here in my area, just 33 miles FROM Cleveland, is that 66's Cleveland Browns, of the film's era, WAS a top winning team, but it's now been lousy for 20 years)

BTW, I'd obtained the Blu-ray of "The Fortune Cookie" from Screen Archives Entertainment, which has been my source for Twilight Time's limited edition releases of catalog movie titles on BD, which tend to be films that are on the older side. But in most cases, the transfers to BD have looked quite good, and I understand that Twilight Time itself, or a vendor the company hired, did restoration work on most of the BD titles that Twilight Time put out.

But alas, Twilight Time is going out of business, and I bought "The Fortune Cookie" for $19.95, about 4 or 5 weeks ago, during what was supposed to be the company's last sale. Previously, every one of the 9 or 10 Twilight Time BD releases I'd purchased had cost $29.95 plus shipping. But I never complained because the company put out such high quality transfers of films such as "A Man For All Seasons", "Leave Her To Heaven", and the 1959 original film version of "Journey To The Center Of The Earth".

Anyway, if you Hawks, or any of our fellow HTF members needs to see a very funny film, which could help to lighten the atmosphere, for a couple hours during this trying time which we are all enduring together, I sure hope that either the Screen Archives Entertainment site or the Twilight Time site, might still have copies left of "The Fortune Cookie" for any folks who may be interested in it.

It's strange how I still recall the exact movie theater where, at age 15, I saw "The Fortune Cookie" on Long Island, with my buddies, as it got to what used to be known as "2nd Run Movie Houses", which screened films after their 1st release. Only saw that movie in a theater once. But I can remember that in 1969, after seeing "Easy Rider" at a first run Long Island theater (though it played in New York City for FOUR MONTHS before ever opening on Long Island), my 2nd, and last, in theater viewing of Dennis Hopper's film, was at that same "2nd Run" theater where Billy Wilder's film played.
 
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bujaki

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The Buccaneer (Olive BD) 1958. A movie that I saw several times upon release. This BD looks positively gorgeous as opposed to the condition of the 1938 version. However, many of the exciting sequences of the early film were excised or shortchanged in this one. The destruction of Barataria is gone; the release of the pirates from prison is eliminated; the short sequence when the pirates launch their pirogues on the swamps is deleted; the Battle of New Orleans is shortened; Claire Bloom's hatred turns to love on a turn on phrase; the survivor of the Corinthian has no business turning up at the Victory Ball, etc. True, Jackson is more important in this retelling; Brynner loses the French accent and is very sexy (as always); Inger Stevens is clad fetchingly and sings "Barbara Allen;" and Claire Bloom is always good at what she does and is an eyeful. Loyal Griggs delivers glorious VV images. However, stick to the original.
Wild Rovers (WA BD) 1971. Fortunately this disc delivers Blake Edwards' original version of the film in its full length and in stereo sound. An unlikely pairing of actors, one in his twilight; the other in his ascendancy. And it works. Not sentimental, not fast moving, with just enough surprising and quite bloody, realistic moments of violence. Another unsung jewel in the Western canon and an antidote to the then current trend of spaghetti westerns.
 
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Matt Hough

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I mentioned in another thread that two nights ago, I began watching my DVD of Watch on the Rhine, an Oscar-nominated Best Film I hadn't seen in at least a decade. About 50 minutes into the disc, the layer change occurred, and the disc froze, the victim of Warner's 2008 production line of discs that have now gone wholly or completely bad.

Instead of bothering with a replacement DVD, I went to iTunes and found the HD version of the movie for $7.99, so I bought it, and today I watched the remaining portions of the movie. The movie is good, not great, though I can certainly understand that during World War II, it would have resonated much more strongly with people. Grand performances from Lucile Watson and Beulah Bondi (among others).

The HD transfer on iTunes could be released on Blu-ray today; it is pristine, very sharp, and with a strong grayscale. Of course, the disc would likely be lucky to sell 100 copies nowadays, but at least this HD version is available for those who want the movie in top quality.
 

TJPC

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I just finished watching this Blu ray. I can say two things — wonderful 3D but dull as ditch water content. (I literally fell asleep during the Mexican movie). The most interesting part believe it or not was the 3D still pictures of family life in the ‘50s.
 
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bujaki

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The Cremator (Criterion BD) 1969. Brilliant film, but oh! so uncomfortable to watch. A nightmarish descent into the madness of a cremator who falls prey to Nazism and the belief that cremation is a release into a better world. It all takes place on the eve of WW2 but the specter of the Final Solution is pervasive. The stark B&W imagery is unforgettable. The hypnotic acting and blocking of the actors add to the surrealism of the story.
The House of the Long Shadows (Kino BD) 1983. This seems to be the final version of the old chestnut "Seven Keys to Baldpate." I have seen all 3 talkie versions (in one day at MoMA, produced by RKO in 1929, 1935, 1947) and I was surprised that this film was based on the novel and play. A great cast of horror thespians gather in a house and strange things happen to a young author trying to write a novel in 24 hours. Exploitation director Pete Walker directs.
 

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