The fascinating achievement of The Sniper is its ability to take the terrifying nature of the serial killer and portray, in equal amounts, his appalling actions of the murders, intertwined with logical thoughts on his illness and the psychological elements of his mind. Watching now, a film from 1952, you would be wrong in thinking that they would hold back on the darkness of the killings addressed within. Normally we would hear that the individual is either mad, insane or demented, yes that maybe the case but here we get thoughts from the other side. Through the eyes of the killer himself and the mind of a psychiatrist.
Opening with that distinct, recognisable voice of Paddington Bear, Commander Lindsay (Michael Hordern) worriedly confronts an air traffic control officer with news that a Dakota airplane has crashed landed at a certain point over Japan. The control room officer is convinced that no distress warnings have come in or the fact that the Dakota isn’t even on that flight path. “How do you know this?” he asks, “I can’t say but if I did you wouldn’t believe me but please believe me I know something has happened!” replies the Commander. Continue reading “The Night My Number Came Up (1955) Dreams, Omens & Final Destination”
Val Guest just impresses every time as I work my way through his varied directed filmography. Enjoying picking around the vast collection of stories he has tackled in his long career. Making sure I hit all the goodies first before I contemplate watching some of the less desirable sounding ones like, well Toomorrow? Also fun fact, can you believe it was Val who started off the cheesy sex comedy series Confessions of a Window Cleaner. Luckily he only made the first one, though he had ventured into saucy land a few years earlier with a slightly naughty one called Au Pair Girls. Continue reading “Yesterday’s Enemy (1959) Val Guest, Stanley Baker And Rumpole Of The Bailey”
Way before Obi-Wan Kenobi was having a right laugh bothering Jawas and scaring the bejeezus out of Tusken Raiders on Tatooine he’d grown up in an industrial northern town in England, Earth. Going under the name of Sidney Stratton he had been a keen amateur inventor. He was clumsy and socially awkward in his younger years but this didn’t phase his creative mind constantly coming up with scientific ideas. For Sidney’s inventive imagination and intellect had come up with the idea of creating a fabric so unbelievable that it could change the whole world. Continue reading “The Man in the White Suit (1951) What Obi-Wan Kenobi Got Up To In His Early Years”
I watched pintsized Mickey Rooney get himself into a right pickle last night, in the 1950 film Quicksand. An excellent recommend from tip top Todd over on the Cinema Monolith film blog. You gotta read his knowledgeable and very funny notes on what makes the perfect film noir over on his article Ten Rules Of Film Noir, it hits the genre spot on and above all, it’s very entertaining. So I have put this film up against the Todd test, let’s see how it fairs. Continue reading “Quicksand (1950) Mickey Rooney & Cinema Monolith Show Us The Rules Of Film Noir”
After watching the first-rate drama The Browning Version I investigated other films directed by Anthony Asquith. With a keen interest in World War II history, his 1958 film Orders To Kill, based on a former American intelligence operative called Donald Chase Downes novel, it ticked all the right boxes for me.
Opening credits – “The central story on which this film is based is true!”
Not until it had finished and went to tick The Harder They Fall off my Humphrey Bogart films I must see list, that it dawned on me this was his final film before he passed away at the young age of 57. I have to say I didn’t realise he was ill whilst watching, he had all those classic Bogart characteristics and mannerisms we all so love. That world weary New York tough guy that hides a heart of gold, a style that you can imagine is naturally his real persona. He’s such a joy to watch and it’s great to know I still have a lot more Bogies to work my way through. Continue reading “The Harder They Fall (1956) Humphrey Bogart’s Last Film Is A Smasher”
The Prowler has been sat, patiently waiting for me to get on with it. Nearly started it a few times but knew I was really going to enjoy this one, so I was happy to wait till it was the perfect time. Knowing it was directed by Joseph Losey, who hits more times than not and being even more psyched by the two stars, Evelyn Keyes and Van Heflin. Continue reading “The Prowler (1951) Voyeuristic Creepy Sexual Tension Noir Drama”
If you ever wondered what the breaking of a human soul looked like on film? then this is the perfect place to view such a devastating blow.
That moment when a scaving remark is delivered with such utter venom, resulting in a visual much similar to the work of scientists splitting the atom on the Manhattan Project. To go from a warm, emotional, heartbreaking scene with a sweet moment of clarity to an instant smash down with a demolition sized ball of destruction. It truly knocked me right of my feet. Continue reading “The Browning Version (1951) The Moment The Human Soul Is Split In Two!”
Two escaped convicts on the run, one with a murderous temper, the other, a belly full of lead! Running for freedom, these two crooks need a place to lay low. A place far away, a place no cop or interfering civilians will go. Hard man Sam Hurley (Stephen McNally) knows the perfect place, an old derelict mining ghost town in the Nevada Desert. Maybe he can arrange to get his fugitive pal Bart Moore (Paul Kelly) fixed up at the same time. With the help of the silent but loyal gangster muscle who helped them breakout the joint, Dummy (Frank de Kova), they make their way to their perfect safe haven. Continue reading “Split Second (1953) Of All The Places To Drop An Atomic Bomb!”