Tuesday, February 21, 2006

100 Films -- Days 40 through 47

Has it really been a week since I last updated this? Oops...

Last Tuesday's movie was Anna Karenina. I wanted to finally see a Greta Garbo film during this challenge. I thought maybe it would be Grand Hotel, but there was a copy of AK on the shelf at the library. It was fair; a little melodramatic, but that's probably the point.

Wednesday night's film was The Manchurian Candidate. That had some moments I didn't expect from a movie from that era. Also I didn't expect the performance from Sinatra -- he usually doesn't show that vulnerability in his roles. Another great movie.

No movies on Thursday and Friday.

On Saturday I saw Fellini's La Strada and Adam's Rib with Spencer Tracy and Katherine Hepburn. La Strada was very touching and beautiful. Adam's Rib is Tracy and Hepburn at the top of their game. Very nice.

All About Eve was Sunday's movie. Bette Davis's "comeback" picture, and rather true-to-life...

Monday night's film was The Public Enemy with James Cagney. One of the gritty Warner Brothers gangster pictures from the early 1930s, this is a really great film and the source of the famous "grapefruit scene".

No movie this evening.

1 comment:

KennKong said...

The Manchurian Candidate…excellent story-telling and a great work of cinema. Frankenheimer’s triumph, in my opinion.

I had my reservations when I first sat down to this pic, myself, thanks to the presence of the crooner. My previous experiences with Frankie Dreamboat being Von Ryan’s Express, Ocean’s 11, Guys & Dolls, and Robin and the Seven Hoods. Wow, did his stock rise in my mind after that. In fact, very disappointing he didn’t play ‘himself’ in The Godfather after seeing this flick. He’d’ve done well.

And Angela Lansbury??? Murder She Wrote, indeed.

But Laurence Harvey is the best. What a performance this man gives. You feel so bad for this ‘kid’. Interesting to see this film (and Dr. Strangelove) as a member of a generation that cut its teeth on M*A*S*H (TV series) and only later come to learn where the real depth of these ‘characters’ sprung forth from. In fact, it’s a little like betrayal, as you come to realize how much of the material from show was lifted or blazed by the films of the 60s.

James Gregory – who knew he’d make a career off of this character with Inspector Luger???

Compare this flick with The Parallax View, which is much better return to the themes and material of Candidate, I’m wagering sight unseen, than the remake of Candidate offered to us a year ago.

Don’t you love the dark and murky way the piece plays out, though? Frankenheimer is the master storyteller. See The Train if you haven’t already.