Friday, May 29, 2020

Week of May 30 - June 5, 2020

To answer these trivia questions, please email me at

Brain Teasers:

In which Italian Western does our hero taunt a man wearing an eyepatch by calling him "Hawkeye"?
George Grimes knew that it was JOHNNY YUMA.

Can you name an actor who was in both IL BUONO, IL BRUTTO, IL CATTIVO and ERCOLE SFIDA SANSONE?
George Grimes, Charles Gilbert and Bertrand Van Wonterghem knew that it was Aldo Giuffre.

By what name is Iloosh Khoshabe better known?
George Grimes, Charles Gilbert and Bertrand Van Wonterghem knew that it was Richard Lloyd or Rod Flash Ilosh.

And now for some new brain teasers:

In which Italian Western does our hero answer the question, "How can you bury $360?" by saying, "With a shovel."?
In the English language version of which Italian Western does a man take the money from a dead man's pocket with the line, "I'll take back the ten dollars with interest you Judas."?
Which American actor who worked on Italian movies was born August 3, 1926?

Name the movies from which these images came.

Bertrand Van Wonterghem and George Grimes identified last week's photo of Dominique Boschero and Anthony Steffen in UN TRENO PER DURANGO, aka A TRAIN FOR DURANGO.
Above is a new photo.
Can you name from what movie it came?

George Grimes identified last week's frame grab of Marisa Allasio in LE SCHIAVE DI CARTAGINE, aka  THE SWORD AND THE CROSS.
Above is a new photo.
Can you name from what movie it came? 

Bertrand Van Wonterghem identified last week's image of Marie Versini and Sean Flynn in SANDOK IL MACISTE DELLA GIUNGLIA, aka TEMPLE OF THE WHITE ELEPHANT.
Above is a new photo.
Can you name from what movie it came?

George Grimes identified last week's photo from PEKING OPERA BLUES.
Above is a new photo.
Can you name from what movie it came?

I am interested in knowing what movies you have watched and what you enjoyed or not. So please send me an email at if you'd like to share. Here's what I watched last week:


GRANT (2020) - A three part documentary series on the History Channel.

Mildly enjoyed:

The Son season two (2018)

ANCHE NEL WEST C'ERA UNA VOLTA DIO, aka IN THE WEST THERE WAS ONCE GOD, aka BETWEEN GOD, THE DEVIL AND A WINCHESTER (1968) - Credit this Italian Western version of TREASURE ISLAND as being unique and well crafted, but also a bit dull. 

THE GYPSY MOTHS (1969) - This film has had an allure for me since I missed it when it was in theaters. Seeing it after fifty years, I can't help but wonder why Burt Lancaster-Edward Lewis-John Frankenheimer wanted to make it. Partly they must have been counting on the novelty of skydiving to draw an audience, and the sex scene between Lancaster and Deborah Kerr on a couch would have seemed daring, but I guess they liked the contrast between the living-on-the-road daredevils and the small town folk. Lancaster got to show off his still potent athleticism, but the real acting was done by Gene Hackman and Scott Wilson. Actually, the story is about Wilson's character, but Lancaster dominates the film obscuring the plot. Reportedly, Frankenheimer blamed the box office failure of the film on interference from the new regime at the studio, but I doubt the film would have been an hit under the best of circumstances. Sheree North does a topless dance wearing pasties, Bonnie Bedelia gets fog filtered close-ups, and Carl Reindel plays a pilot. Why did the print shown on TCM digitally obscure the cover of a Playboy magazine when they didn't obscure Deborah Kerr's nipple? Did Playboy demand new royalities?

Did not enjoy:

CURLY SUE (1991)

FEUD OF THE TRAIL (1937) - Tom Tyler gets called back from a leave of absence by the Protective Association to go after some highway men with Milburn Morante. Three robbers take the money off a man driving a Rolls-Royce (!) in the countryside. When our heroes comes upon the robbed man, he throws his hands up again because Tyler could be the twin of one of the robbers. Our heroes pursue the bad guys and the other Tyler is killed. Our hero Tyler assumes the identity of the dead man to get the drop on the other bad guys. The Protective League sees a letter from the dead Tyler's father asking for help, so Tyler is sent out to investigate disguised as the dead man. Dressed all in black, like Hopalong Cassidy (who appeared in his first movie in 1935), Tyler, with Morante, ride along, but unlike William Boyd, Tyler does sing "The Old Chisholm Trail". Tyler gets to the father's spread too late to stop the villains, led by Vane Calvert as Ma Holcomb, from swindling the ranch from Lafe McKee and his daughter Harley Wood. Calvert knows that the now dead Tyler was an outlaw, so she sends out her boys to get him under the cover of the law. They attack at night while Tyler and Wood are singing "The Old Chishom Trail", but Tyler wounds two of them and they ride off. The next morning, Tyler rides up to the villain's house inorder to get back the deed, a fist fight ensues but Morante arrives in time to stop Calvert from shooting our hero. Morante identifies himself as the law, and Calvert denouces Tyler as a wanted man. Tyler plays along hoping that the villains will lead him to the secret gold mine. But first he rides to reveal the truth to McKee and Wood, and to get them away to safety. When the bad guys show up looking for McKee, Tyler hides behind a book case and then follows as they leave. Morante shows up with a posse from town in time for the showdown at the mine. The only person killed in this movie is the outlaw Tom Tyler. At the fade out, Wood, who expressed some strong affection for her brother, seems interested in transferring that affection to his look-a-like.

GARGOYLES (1972) - Jennifer Salt looks terrific in her white halter top and it's fun seeing Scott Glenn so young, but the movie is a bit of a drag.

MARSHAL OF GUNSMOKE (1944) - The movie starts with a montage of action scenes from other productions with the newspaper headline "Gold Strike Brings Reign of Terror to Gunsmoke County". "Miners Driven from Disputed Claims by Pete Larkin and Curtis Gang". Tex Ritter arrives in Gunsmoke on a stagecoach that deftly manuvers around men on horseback shooting out windows around town. "There's nothing to be a scared about. It's only Pete Larkin and his boys having a little fun," says the driver. Breaking up a fight between Fuzzy Knight and Ernie Adams, Ritter is recognized as "The Marshal of Deadwood who cleaned up Tombstone." Banker Herbert Rawlinson has called for Ritter to clean up the town inorder for an election to be held and a township to be created. Saloon singer Jennifer Holt, with Johnny Bond and His Red River Boys, perform "Sundown Trail" as Ritter arrives to post a notice that the carrying of side arms is prohibited in Gunsmoke. After Ernie Adams' murdered body is brought into town, Johnny Bond and His Red River Boys perform "My Saddle Serenade" in the saloon. Ritter arrests Ethan Laidlaw, as Pete Larkin, and four of his men for Adams' murder. The bad guys send a wire to get help from Harry Woods, as Lon Curtiss, who happens to be on a riverboat playing cards with Ritter's lawyer brother, Russell Hayden. When Hayden writes a check to cover his gambling losses to Woods, the villain hires Hayden to defend the bad guys in the Gunsmoke court. Hayden wins the court case, and even though Ritter agrees that the bad guys had the right to a defense, Holt returns Hayden's engagement ring. It is election day. Will Curtiss and the bad guys prevent the good people of Gunsmoke from voting for township? Not until after Jennifer Holt with Johnny Bond and His Red River Valley Boys sing "La Golondrina" at Woods' victory party - which seems strange since she obviously thinks poorly of the bad guy. At the party, Hayden catches Laidlaw cheating at cards and then shooting the other player to death. Realizing that he was working for the wrong side, Hayden leaves while Holt stays to witness Woods pay off the phony trial witness with Hayden's check. Back in town, Ritter sings "Git Along Little Dogies" while the townspepople are voting. When the phony witness tries to cash the check at the bank which is closed for the voting, he pulls his gun and Hayden drops him. Hayden is accused of having bribed the now dead phony witness, so he takes off to Wood's hacienda. Ritter and Knight follow and save Hayden from Wood's henchmen, plus they free Holt who testifies that she saw Woods give the check to the phony witness. She also informs them that the villains plan to dress up as Indians and attack the stagecoach inorder to destroy the ballots coming in from the rail line voters. After the phony Indians unhitch the horses from the moving stagecoach, Knight is able to steer the vehicle down the mountain road and into town just after our heroes win the shootout with the bad guys who had taken over the town. That's alot of plot in addition to four songs to cover in under an hour of running time, so everything is kept breezy and nothing is really dramatized. While the newspaper and the credit list the villain as "Curtis", the sign outside his hacienda says "Curtiss".

THE MASKED RIDER (1941) - A gang led by a man in a white mask is waylaying all of the shipments from a silver mine. Johnny Mack Brown and Fuzzy Knight mosey along to look for work and prevent the gang from getting the new shipment. It turns out that Nell O'Day and Guy D'Ennery are the owners of the mine, and O'Day sent for Brown to catch the White Mask. An effort is made to make D'Ennery look to be the White Mask, but Brown figures that it is really Grant Withers. Brown intends to set a trap for the gang by taking out a phony shipment, while Knight will take away the real silver. Withers discovers the trick and the gang goes after Knight. Capturing the silver, Knight and D'Ennery, the White Mask plans an ambush for our hero, but Knight and D'Ennery escape. Finally, Brown unmasks Withers, and D'Ennery's daughter, Virginia Carroll prevails on our hero to not leave right away. Meanwhile Carmela Cansino demands that Knight sing for her to prove his love. Ford Beebe directed. The Guadalajara Trio and Jose Cansino Dancers fill up about ten minutes of the film's hour long running time with musical performances.

MESSIAH OF EVIL (1973) - Featuring three women - Marianna Hill, Anitra Ford and Joy Bang - so sexy that one wishes that Willard Huyck and Gloria Katz had decided to start their careers with a skin flick rather than a messed-up horror movie. This shows all of the symptoms of a film that was attempted to be saved in the editing room with few scenes flowing easily onto the next scenes and two different voice over narrations trying to not explain what's going on. Reportedly Anitra Ford wrote that the film never finished production due to a backer pullling out, and that a third party took the unedited footage and created the finished movie. So, is this better than Huyck's HOWARD THE DUCK?

NOOSE FOR A GUNMAN (1960) - Many may wonder if director Sergio Leone saw this movie as it begins with a fellow riding into town being greeted by a hangman's noose dangling from a tree. This film has the addition of a sign reading "Reserved for Case Britton". The rider is Case and is played by Jim Davis. Davis ran afoul of the town boss, played by Barton MacLane, by killing MacLane's two sons who had killed Davis' brother, the former sheriff. It has been five years since Davis last came to town, and new sheriff Walter Sande doesn't want trouble. Trouble is coming, Davis tells Sande and Harry Carey. Jr. because the Cantrell gang, led by Ted de Corsia, is on the way to steal the Cattleman's Association money shipment when it leaves town on the stagecoach. (Cantrell is modeled after the infamous Quantrell; former Confederate guerrillas who became bandits.) Davis' fiance, Lyn Thomas, is arriving on that stage at 3pm. MacLane shows up with gunman Leo Gordon, who is just itching to kill our hero. The decision is made to not send the money out of town on the stage, though they know that de Corsia will attack the town to get that money. Davis offers to back Sande up in the coming fight, but the Town Council orders Sande to keep Davis locked up. David convinces Sande to hide the money under the floorboards of the jail, because the bank's safe isn't secure. Eventually, the gang shows up, kills Sande and all of his deputies, so the remaining City Council decides to let Davis out of jail in the hope that he will save the town. Davis sows discord between de Corsia and MacLane so the villains are split when Davis starts fighting. Considering the loss of life, everyone is town is weirdly  happy for the finale, when Davis and Thomas leave town to start homesteading in Oregon. Edward L. Chan directed. This is the second of three films based on The Fastest Gun by Steve Fisher: TOP GUN (1955) and THE QUICK GUN (1964).

PRINCESS FROM THE MOON (1987) - From the ending scene, one would like to be able to call this CLOSE ENCOUNTERS OF THE THIRD KIND set in medevil Japan, but that ignores the two hours of prior running time that plays like a very slowly paced version of the original 10th-century fairy tale. Kon Ichikawa directed and Toshiro Mifune co-stars.

SISTERS OF DEATH (1977) - Reportedly this was shot in 1972, but didn't get a release for five years.


David Deal enjoyed:


EAGLES OF DEATH METAL: NOS AMIS (17) - In November of 2015 the EoDM was playing a gig in Paris when terrorists attacked and killed 89 of the concertgoers, wounding many more.  This film documents the effect on the band, and their return to Paris to do a show three months later.  While no graphic footage is shown, the accounts of those who were there are harrowing enough.

THE COLOR OUT OF SPACE (12) - This German version of the HP Lovecraft story about a meteor that lands, corrupting the land and the people, is, in my opinion, clearly superior to the recent Richard Stanley extravaganza.




Mildly enjoyed:


SUNSET STRIP (12) - Documentary tells the sordid history of the famous strip of clubs and hotels in LA.  Entertaining enough.


Charles Gilbert watched:

TWO MULES FOR SISTER SARAH (1970). Just how believable can Shirley as a nun be with heavy indelible mascara lasting days in the desert?

ZORIKAN THE BARBARIAN (1964) B&W. Ambitious Saracen marauder Zorikan (Dan Vadis) seeks to take by force sacred desiderata from Walter Brandi guarding the neighboring Christians' treasure while courting lovely Elenora Bianchi Terribly faded shaky print on YouTube.


Bertrand Van Wonterghem enjoyed:

Double crossbones (1951, Charles T. Barton)

Pauvre richard (2012, Malik Chibane)

The Saint episode « the Gadic collection » (1967, Freddie Francis)

Kuai can che / Soif de justice / Wheels on meals (Samo Hung) 

Mildly enjoyed

Le noir te (vous) va si bien (2012, Jacques Bral)

Cash MacCall (1959, Joseph Pevney)

Was stunned  when watching

General Massacre (1973, Burr Jerger)


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