Shamedown #10: Monster From the Ocean Floor

Happy Halloween! Can't believe we're on our tenth Shamedown of 2022. As always, if anyone is coming in late and wants to know what this Shamedown business is all about, the details can be found here. Onward... Roger Corman has quite the reputation and quite the filmography. The man has been producing since the early … Continue reading Shamedown #10: Monster From the Ocean Floor

Walk Like A Ghost

One of my favorite movies from the nineties is 1993's Heart and Souls, which I first saw at the long-gone CineDome in Concord, California with my cousin, Cindy. She and I have always been Hekyll and Jekyll, and after a wild grab at a popcorn bucket (don't ask) we were hooting and giggling before the movie … Continue reading Walk Like A Ghost

The Right To Escape

Here we go... 1963's The Great Escape is quite the iconic film, parodied and tributed so many times in so many ways (remember this one?). Steve McQueen dominates the proceedings, ably supported by fellow icons Charles Bronson, James Coburn, James Garner, and Richard Attenborough, along with the wonderful David McCallum, best known today as Duckie. Our … Continue reading The Right To Escape

The Remake of the Remake

It takes two, baby... There's much more to The Parent Trap than meets the eye. While it might seem like the beloved 1961 Disney film is the original, and in a way it is, it's actually a remake of a 1950 German film, Das Doppelte Lottchen, which was based on a novel of the same … Continue reading The Remake of the Remake

During World War Two: Dueling Canteens

It can't be denied that Hollywood, and for that matter, Broadway, were in an unique position to help the troops during the war. Support for the war effort was overwhelming in these industries, especially once the last holdouts stopped tiptoeing around the Nazis and the other Axis powers. Not to mention, seventy-nine percent of Americans … Continue reading During World War Two: Dueling Canteens

How To Make A Sequel

We all know there's a way to make a sequel and a way not to make a sequel, and 1935's The Bride of Frankenstein is a sequel that mostly got it right, because it both revisits what came before and does it one better. I know I'm not the first one to say this but it … Continue reading How To Make A Sequel

Page To Screen: The Three Musketeers

It's been a long time since we've looked at a literary leviathan, adapted countless times for the large and small screen, part of our cultural lexicon, and something we can't imagine life without. The 1844 Alexandre Dumas classic is an absolute titan in that regard, right up there with Robin Hood, King Arthur and Romeo and … Continue reading Page To Screen: The Three Musketeers

Shamedown #9: Telephone Operator

We're back for more shame! I'm always tempted to make "Love Potion #9" jokes when we get to this point in the year, but I'm not going to do that. If anyone is coming in late on this Shamedown business they can find the details here and past Shamedowns here. Off we go... I'm not sure … Continue reading Shamedown #9: Telephone Operator

Checkmate

Happy National Silent Film Day! There's nothing new under the sun, of course, and this year I thought I'd revisit the 1923 film, White Tiger, a Tod Browning tale of murder, mistaken identity, mayhem, and a chess-playing automaton. I couldn't make this up if I tried. The movie opens in a London suburb, where a young … Continue reading Checkmate

It’s All About the Drapes

We all know that so many Hollywood stars got their start on the stage, Broadway or otherwise, and one of the most famous is Vincente Minnelli. Among the things Minnelli did so well in his films was communicate emotion without beating an audience over the head, and one of his lesser-known films is 1955's The … Continue reading It’s All About the Drapes

If I Were A Broadway Musical

Here we go... Guys and Dolls is quite the show. I first heard the music in college when my voice teacher showed us clips from the 1992 revival starring Peter Gallagher, Faith Prince, Nathan Lane, and Josie de Guzman and liked it so much I bought the soundtrack album. However, I've never seen the 1955 movie … Continue reading If I Were A Broadway Musical

They’re Watching Us

Time to crack open those books... H.G. Wells's The War of the Worlds seems to be the Michael J. Fox of sci-fi in that plenty of other sci-fi stories want to be it really, really badly, and some are more overt about it than others. John Christopher's wonderful Tripod series is definitely an homage to … Continue reading They’re Watching Us

During World War Two: The Pacific Theater (Part Two)

When we last left off, America had temporarily pulled out of the Philippines as the last holdouts, Bataan and Corregidor fell to the Japanese, putting thousands of American and Filipino troops and civilians in the hands of enemy forces. Those who weren't murdered were herded into camps, where they faced extremely harsh conditions, and even … Continue reading During World War Two: The Pacific Theater (Part Two)

Five Reasons To See “A Hard Day’s Night”

Britannia rules the waves (again)... We all know 1964 was a huge year for the Beatles. Their careers and collective fate suddenly shot to the top. They made two appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show. They toured America for the first time. John wrote and published In His Own Write, which he also promoted on … Continue reading Five Reasons To See “A Hard Day’s Night”

Hep To the Jive

The teen years are awkward enough, but for Shirley Temple they must have been downright painful, because after her 1940 film, The Blue Bird flopped she was at loose ends as an actress, ending her contract with Fox and trying to figure out what to do next. She made one movie at MGM, Kathleen, which didn't grab people, and … Continue reading Hep To the Jive

Stage To Screen: The Music Man

Few Broadway shows can touch The Music Man. It's probably in the top ten of the most well-known musical comedies, or just musicals in general. It's rousing, it's funny, it's winkingly naughty, it has a lot of cool plays on words, it feels like yesteryear. Most of all, who hasn't wanted to go marching out of the … Continue reading Stage To Screen: The Music Man

Shamedown #8: Underworld Scandal

We're back with another Shamedown, people, and the titles just keep getting more generic (Heh. Just wait until next month.). If anyone is coming in late and is therefore fuzzy on what a Shamedown is, the details can be found here. Juvenile delinquency rose hugely all over the world both during and after the Second … Continue reading Shamedown #8: Underworld Scandal