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Friday, October 19, 2018

The Wolf Man Is Cured: Lon Chaney In "House Of Dracula" (1945) (video)

In Universal's last "serious" film to feature Lon Chaney as the Wolf Man...

...luckless lycanthrope Lawrence Talbot may finally be cured of his curse.

I neither own nor claim any rights to this material.  Just having some fun with it.  Thanks for watching!


Thursday, October 18, 2018

John Wayne's Coolest Scenes #3: "Cahill, U.S. Marshal" (1973) (video)

John Wayne's Coolest Scenes #3: "Cahill, U.S. Marshal" (1973)

While bringing a group of suspects into town, Cahill is confronted by a group of townspeople who want to lynch them.

I neither own nor claim any rights to this material.  Just having some fun with it.  Thanks for watching!


Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Olive Films November Releases: "Mr. Capra Goes To War" and "The 7th Day"

Olive Films is proud to announce the following November 2018​ releases:

Mr. Capra Goes To War: Frank Capra’s World War II Documentaries

The 7th Day



PREBOOK:        10/23/18
STREET:           11/6/18

MR. CAPRA GOES TO WAR   DVD           
CAT:                 OF1418
UPC:       887090141819
SRP:                 $24.95

MR. CAPRA GOES TO WAR      BD          
CAT:                 OF1419
UPC:       887090141918
SRP:                 $29.95
Directed or Produced by
FRANK CAPRA (A Hole in the Head, It’s A Wonderful Life, Meet John Doe)
YEAR: 1942 – 1945
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH (with optional English subtitles)
VIDEO: 1.33:1 and 1.78:1 Aspect Ratios; B&W and COLOR

“Frank Capra: Why We Fight,” an analysis of Frank Capra’s war documentaries by Joseph McBride, film historian and author of the biography “Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success”
Introductions to each of the five Capra war documentaries by Joseph McBride

Director Frank Capra, known to millions as the man behind the beloved classics It’s a Wonderful Life, It Happened One Night, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington and Meet John Doe, also used his talents in support of the war effort by directing, producing and acting as an advisor on a series of World War II propaganda films. Depicting the ravages of combat, the lives of soldiers engaged in battle, as well as those left behind on the home front, five of the films that Capra was involved in bringing to the screen are represented in this special edition presented in cooperation with the National Archives.

Tunisian Victory takes us behind Allied troop lines and documents American and British forces working together to free North Africa from the grip of the Nazi stranglehold. Capra was assisted by film editor Hugh Stewart (49th Parallel) and directors Roy Boulting (The Outsider) and John Huston (The Maltese Falcon, Let There Be Light), in this film that features the voice talents of Burgess Meredith (Story of G.I. Joe, Rocky), Bernard Miles (In Which We Serve) and Leo Genn (Moby Dick), and a powerful film score attributed to Dimitri Tiomkin (High Noon) and William Alwyn (The Fallen Idol).

Prelude to War, the first in Capra's Why We Fight series of propaganda films, is a rallying cry for patriots to join the fight against the Axis powers and the tyranny of Nazism. A host of musical talent contributed to the score, including Alfred Newman (How the West Was Won), winner of nine Academy Awards®, and David Raksin (Laura).

The Battle of Russia, another of Capra’s Why We Fight films, is the longest and most ambitious of the series. Presented in two parts, the film focuses on the Nazi conquest of the Balkans in an attempt to capture Russia. Capra would share directing credit with Russian-born Anatole Litvak (Sorry, Wrong Number) in a film which is aided immeasurably by Walter Huston’s (The Treasure of the Sierra Madre) narration.

The Negro Soldier, produced by Capra and directed by Stuart Heisler (The Glass Key), was used as an enlistment tool to encourage African-American men and women to join the armed forces. The film incorporates footage of Olympic athlete Jesse Owens at the 1936 Berlin Games, highlighting and contrasting the freedom-loving citizens of the United States with Germany’s oppressive and ever-growing Nazi party.

Your Job in Germany, directed by Capra and written by Theodor S. Geisel (better known as Dr. Seuss), is a short form film shown to soldiers who would be serving “occupation duty” in Germany in 1945.



PREBOOK:        10/23/18
STREET:           11/6/18

THE 7TH DAY    DVD     
CAT:                 OF1420
UPC:       887090142014
SRP:                 $24.95

THE 7TH DAY    BD       
CAT:                 OF1421
UPC:       887090142113
SRP:                 $29.95
El 7º Día

(Paco’s Men, Summer Rain, Painless)
(The Moon in the Gutter, High Heels, Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down!)
(Broken Embraces, The Skin I Live In, Goya’s Ghosts)
(The Take, The Ax, Now You See Me)
(Volver, Angel of Death, Life Marks)

Directed by
(Cría Cuervos, ¡Ay, Carmela!, Goya in Bordeaux)

With The 7th Day (El 7º Día), Carlos Saura, the director behind the Academy Award® nominated films in the Best Foreign Language Film category – Mama Turns 100 (1980), Carmen (1984) and Tango (1999) – brings to the screen a riveting story of love and revenge.

YEAR: 2004
LANGUAGE: SPANISH (with optional English subtitles)
VIDEO: 1.85:1 Aspect Ratio; COLOR

From master filmmaker Carlos Saura (Cría Cuervos) comes a story of love, betrayal and revenge. Set in the Spanish village of Extremadura, and based on a true account, The 7th Day (El 7º Día) is a tale of warring families and bloodshed that would stain the region.

The festering hatred between the Jiménez and Fuentes households, born out of a broken marriage vow, will unleash a vengeful wrath that engulfs an entire village, leaving no one unscathed. The 7th Day features riveting performances from a cast that includes Victoria Abril (High Heels), José Garcia (Now You See Me), Juan Diego (All is Silence), José Luis Gómez (Broken Embraces), Yohana Cobo (Volver), Oriol Vila (Blancanieves), Eulàlia Ramon (Girl Gets Girl), Juan Sanz (One Word from You) and Carlos Hipólito (Crazy Loves).

The 7th Day is directed by Carlos Saura, written by Ray Loriga (Live Flesh), photographed by François Lartigue (Black Really Suits You), edited by Julia Juaniz (Goya in Bordeaux), with music composed by Roque Baños (Don’t Breathe).


Lon Chaney Werewolf Transformation: "La Casa Del Terror" (Mexican, 1959) (video)

In this Mexican chiller, Lon Chaney plays a mummy...

...who, after being revived, turns into a werewolf!

I neither own nor claim any rights to this material.  Just having some fun with it.  Thanks for watching!


Tuesday, October 16, 2018

DRAGNET: COLLECTOR'S EDITION -- Blu-ray Review by Porfle

I've heard several people over the years say that they liked, or even loved, the 1987 feature comedy adaptation of the classic TV cop series "Dragnet" starring Dan Ackroyd and Tom Hanks. To those people I would recommend Shout! Factory's new Blu-ray release DRAGNET: COLLECTOR'S EDITION, which features a new 4K HD scan and an assortment of bonus features.

The film certainly is lively and full of blustery comedic action that people not all that familiar with the TV show can enjoy without a lot of bothersome comparisons to it.

Basically it's the story of a very straight-laced, by-the-book cop (Dan Ackroyd as Sgt. Joe Friday) and his flighty, fun-loving, all-rules-barred new partner "Pep" Streebek (Tom Hanks) having to work together--while constantly getting on each other's nerves--to stop a growing organization of deranged criminals bent on citywide chaos.

For these viewers the film offers a wealth of one-liners and raucous situations as Friday and Streebek must overcome their "odd couple" differences and eventually develop a grudging mutual respect.  The investigation into the crime group known as "P.A.G.A.N." (People Against Goodness And Normalcy) also yields wild car chases, lots of stunts, gorgeous babes, some romantic schmaltz, and a constant barrage of generic action-movie stuff to keep us occupied.

That said, as a longtime devoted fan of the actual TV series (both in its 1950s and 1960s incarnations), I find the movie as a whole to be consistently problematic.  (That's the first time I've ever used that word!)

As a parody of the series, the movie is surprisingly unsimilar to it despite the usual references to "just the facts, ma'am" and other tropes ("This is the city...I work here, I carry a badge", "The story you are about to see is true", etc.) and Friday's unyielding adherence to the rules and loyalty to strict civil order in general.

Ackroyd is actually playing the original Joe Friday's nephew, but his character is meant to be a carbon copy of his late uncle.  It's troubling, then, that he is so far off base in capturing Jack Webb's intonations and body language, instead doing a sort of generic stiff-backed type with clipped speech and no sense of humor.

The more human and even, at times, casual aspects of Webb's portrayal are lost in Ackroyd's robotic interpretation. It often seems as though he's doing more of a take-off on Robert Stack's Elliot Ness from "The Untouchables" than Webb's more haggard, world-weary cop.  And while the old Joe might occasionally hit a bad guy with a long, rapid-fire verbal scolding, this one tends to speechify every other time he opens his mouth.  

As for Hanks, still at the age where he looked like a big, goofy kid, he plays a new character whose main trait is a childlike disregard for propriety and is designed simply to clash with Joe Friday's dogged conservatism in comic ways.  Mostly it works, although the two are at such odds that we miss the teamwork and comradery of Friday and his loyal partners Frank Smith (Ben Alexander) and Bill Gannon (Harry Morgan) from the TV series.

Speaking of Morgan, he plays the same character as before, now promoted to captain.  His devotion to his late partner doesn't carry over to the nephew, hence Captain Gannon spends much of the film bellowing at Friday and threatening to take away his badge (which he eventually does at the insistence of shrewish police commissioner Elizabeth Ashley).

The plot itself is a convoluted affair that bears little resemblance to the usual "Dragnet" investigations.  Friday's traditional "just the facts, ma'am" questioning of a civilian witness is represented by an unfunny exchange in which venerable comic actress Kathleen Freeman must portray a grotesquely foul-mouthed old lady who even has Streebek shaking his head along with Friday.

Dabney Coleman plays softcore sex magazine magnate Jerry Caesar, giving the film an excuse to be fully stocked with bikini babes, and Jack O'Halloran, the big, dumb member of the evil Kryptonian trio in SUPERMAN II, plays a big, dumb P.A.G.A.N. henchman who menaces the good guys.

Alexandra Paul is the button-cute Connie, a kidnapped virgin meant as a sacrifice in the bad guys' big pagan ritual but is rescued by the good guys and eventually develops romantic feelings for fellow virgin Friday. (Again, Jack Webb's Friday was a low-key sort of guy but he was never portrayed as either nerdy or virginal.)  The most surprising bit of casting is Christopher Plummer as a pious TV evangelist who may have a darker side.

But as I said before, all of these misgivings stem from my affection for the TV show and desire to see a more faithful parody of it.  As for everyone else, this "Dragnet" spoof may be a perfectly adequate and perhaps even gutbusting comedy romp.  If so, DRAGNET: COLLECTOR'S EDITION should prove an ideal way to enjoy it. 

Special Features:
NEW "A Quiet Evening in the Company of Connie Swail": An Interview With Co-Star Alexandra Paul
NEW Audio Commentary with Pop Culture Historian Russell Dyball
"Just the Facts!": A Promotional Look at Dragnet with Dan Aykroyd and Tom Hanks
Original Theatrical Trailers & Promos
Photo Gallery 

Buy it from Shout! Factory


"ANT-MAN AND THE WASP" -- Watch Instantly On Digital and Add To Your Blu-ray™ Collection Today





Moviegoers are still buzzing about Marvel Studios’ “Ant-Man and The Wasp,” the follow-up to 2015’s “Ant-Man” and the 20th consecutive Marvel Cinematic Universe film to debut at No. 1 opening weekend and ranked in the box office top 10 for six consecutive weeks this summer. Fans can instantly watch the laugh-out-loud super hero adventure Digitally in HD and take it home today on Blu-ray™ and Blu-ray 4K Ultra HD™.

Exclusive extras provide an inside look at some of Marvel Comics’ most celebrated characters and the consummate, comedic actors who portray them in “Ant-Man and The Wasp.” Featurettes spotlight Paul Rudd, who returns as good-hearted thief turned hero, Scott Lang, and delivers big laughs both on set and in theaters; Evangeline Lilly, who transforms into The Wasp, the first female character to be featured in the title treatment of a Marvel Studios film; and iconic actors Michael Douglas and Michelle Pfeiffer as super couple Hank and Janet Van Dyne.

Viewers can explore more about the visual development artists and effects used to bring the characters to life and drastically alter the size of the Super Heroes and their surroundings. Additional extras include deleted scenes, bloopers, outtakes, and audio commentary by “Ant-Man” franchise director Peyton Reed.

“Ant-Man and The Wasp” comes packaged in several formats to best fit today’s varying consumer desires. Viewers can instantly bring home the film two weeks early on Digital SD/HD/4K Ultra HD and receive access to two exclusive features — including a clever commercial promoting a close-up look at the online magic school that FBI agent Jimmy Woo references to learn his card tricks and a 10 years of Marvel Studios featurette profiling the artists of the MCU — or they can purchase a physical copy of the film as either a Cinematic Universe Edition (4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray and Digital Code) or a Multi-Screen Edition (Blu-ray and Digital Code), granting the flexibility to watch the device of their choice.


Hokey Hitchcock: Diner Scene From "The Birds" (1963) (video)

Alfred Hitchcock's editing choices were often brilliantly inventive.

But sometimes they didn't work quite as well as he envisioned... in this brief moment from "The Birds."

I neither own nor claim any rights to this material.  Just having some fun with it.  Thanks for watching!


Monday, October 15, 2018

John Wayne's Coolest Scenes #1: "McLintock!" (1963) (video)

John Wayne's Coolest Scenes #1: "McLintock!" (1963) (video)

I neither own nor claim any rights to this material.  Just having some fun with it.  Thanks for watching!