Sunday, December 27, 2015

A Hard Day's Night

I was probably 7 or 8 years old when I caught HELP on its network TV showing. It didn't make a big impression. YELLOW SUBMARINE I saw at the theater when I was 9 and I caught a matinee of LET IT BE when I was 11. It wasn't until after that, I believe, when I finally caught up with A HARD DAY'S NIGHT, the quintessential English rock and roll movie! Ringo really is excellent here, although I remain convinced by his later lack of any substantial acting ability that it was director Richard Lester who brought it out in him. The others are all charm and cheek and even Paulie's grandfather makes an impact. (He's very clean.) Visually and musically, this was a major step up from, say, Cliff Richard's lightweight teen fare. Sadly, much of what followed in the genre was more a step back, leaving A HARD DAY'S NIGHT alone at the top even today!

Monday, December 21, 2015

My Top 10 Jane Fonda Flicks

Politics aside, it's impossible to deny that she is and has pretty much always been one of the most natural film talents ever. Equally at home in farce, slapstick, screwball comedy or searing emotional drama, Jane Fonda has brightened the screen here on her 78th birthday for more than half a century! These--in order--are my 10 favorite Fondas.

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Rare Exports

An odd combination of JOHN CARPENTER'S THE THING, A CHRISTMAS STORY and a dash of 2001 A SPACE ODYSSEY. Thanks to Martin Grams for the recommendation. 

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Rare Virginia Rappe-1920

The above comic strip-style ad says 6 reels but reviews at the time said 4 which would make this a short--a long short, but a short. Forgotten comedy star Lloyd Hamilton co-stars with Virginia Rappe, soon to die at Roscoe Arbuckle's now-infamous party a little over a year later.

Below is a brief article written supposedly by Ms. Rappe herself in which she decries Jazz Age party girls and calls for a return to more "Quakerness." Most likely some publicity hack wrote this while Virginia was out being--by all accounts-- the type of girl she was ostensibly against here.