Friday, September 3, 2021

Week of September 4 - 10, 2021


To answer these trivia questions, please email me at

Brain Teasers:

On what movie did Robert Woods and George Hamilton work together?
Tom Betts, Bertrand van Wonterghem, Charles Gilbert and George Grimes knew that it was WHERE THE BOYS ARE.

On what movie did Robert Woods and Henry Fonda work together?
Tom Betts, Bertrand van Wonterghem, Charles Gilbert and George Grimes knew that it was BATTLE OF THE BULGE.

On what TV production did Robert Woods and Lindsay Wagner work together?
Tom Betts, Bertrand van Wonterghem, Charles Gilbert and George Grimes knew that it was Scruples.

And now for some new brain teasers:

Which Sicilian born actor played Richard Harrison's brother in a Western directed by a Spaniard?
Can you name a Western starring Gianni Garko in which he does not play Sartana, but that name is used in the title?
Which character from The Bible that was played by Gianni Garko?

Name the movies from which these images came.

George Grimes and Bertrand van Wonterghem identified last week's photo of Jesus Puente, Benito Stefanelli and Luis Gaspar from 100,000 DOLLARI PER LASSITER, aka DOLLARS FOR A FAST GUN.
Above is a new photo.
Can you name from what movie it came?

George Grimes, Bertrand van Wonterghem, Angel Rivera and Charles Gilbert identified last week's frame grab of Rhonda Fleming, Ettore Manni and Lang Jeffries in LA RIVOLTA DEGLI SCHIAVI, aka REVOLT OF THE SLAVES .
Above is a new photo.
Can you name from what movie it came?

No one has identified the above photo yet.
Can you name from what movie it came?

George Grimes identified last week's photo from THE FIVE DEADLY VENOMS, aka THE VENOMS.
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:



HANNAH ARENDT (2012) - Born into a German Jewish family in 1906, Hannah Arendt studied, and was a lover, with Martin Heidegger before getting her doctorate in philosophy with Karl Jaspers in 1929. In 1933, after an arrest by the Gestapo, Arendt fled Germany and eventually arrived in the U.S. in 1941. The film begins with the 1961 trial in Jerusalem of Adolf Eichmann, and Arendt's request to The New Yorker for them to send her to Israel to write about it. With the 1951 publication of her book THE ORIGINS OF TOTALITARIANISM, Arendt had become such a respect celebrity that the magazine was happy to grant her request. Arendt was shocked to find that Eichmannn was not the monster she had expected and to discover how he relied up cooperation from the Jewish leaders in the ghettos to help facilitate his bureaucratic effort to ship them to the camps. She coined the phrase "the banality of evil" in describing Eichmann and criticized how Israel had to invent reasons to prosecute him. When her articles, and the book EICHMANN IN JERUSALEM, was published, she was severely attacked with many of her friends rejecting her. This is the real story of this film, showing Arendt and her New York City "tribe" before the controversy, her weathering the storm, and her strength in never wavering in her view of the truth. Barbara Sukowa is marvelous in the title role, and every appearance of Janet McTeer as her friend Mary McCarthy - best known as the author of THE GROUP - is a joy, partly because she is a steadfast friend. The rest of the cast is sterling, including Axel Milberg, Nicholas Woodeson and Julia Jentsch. German director Margarethe von Trotta has accomplished something quite impressive here, though one may fault her for not having better noted that Arendt's work would become celebrated and her detractors forgotten.

Marvel's What If...? episode four (2021)

Mildly enjoyed:

CROSSING DELANCEY (1988) - Based on a play by Susan Sandler, this movie was obviously made by Jewish women as it is concerned with a Jewish woman being torn between her crush on a foreign born writer and the nice Jewish owner of a pickle store. Amy Irving works at a book store and writer Jeroen Krabbe, who lives in the neighborhood, loves the fact that she is a fan. Irving's grandmother, Reizi Bozyk, engages a marriage broker, Sylvia Miles, to introduce Irving to Peter Riegert. Not surprisingly, Irving resents Riegert because of the set-up and because he doesn't fit into her idea of what a modern woman involved with writers would want. Director Joan Micklin Silver presents a warm portrait of life in the Jewish community, and handles the romance with sensitivity. Having The Roches handle the soundtrack helps to achieve a light humorous tone, and Suzzy Roche puts in a nice performance as one of Irving's friends. The future David Hyde Pierce, billed here as just David Pierce, has a small role.

STRIPPED: LOS ANGELES (2020) - So Mill Creek Entertainment has produced an original documentary that aired on Starz and Starz Encore. Marc Ostrick is the director of this profile of five adult entertainers who attempt to dispel the negative image of women who work in this field. Bama Babii talks about how becoming a pole dancer saved her life after contemplating suicide following being gang raped while serving on a U.S. Navy Aircraft Carrier. A highlight is Nikki Knightly doing comedy standup and encouraging her audience to find and masturbate to her stuff on the internet.

Did not enjoy:

THE ANGRY HILLS (1959) - Perhaps Leon Uris' novel was too complex to be made into a satisfactory movie, but I would have been interested in seeing what director Robert Aldrich had in mind before Producer Raymond Stross decided to recut the film. As it is now, the film is incredibly choppy with little flow between scenes; important story elements are mentioned rather than shown, and minor bits drag on for much longer than needed. Reportedly, Stross wanted Clark Gable as his star. Then Alan Ladd was considered before Robert Mitchum took the job. Aldrich said that he was disappointed that he was unable to get Mitchum to do more than "walk through the role". Just as the Nazis take control of Greece, Donald Wolfit gives Mitchum an important list of freedom fighters. Suddenly, Mitchum finds himself being chased by Gestapo Officer Stanley Baker and his Greek collaborator Theodore Bikel. Eventually, Mitchum finds himself being cared for in a small village by George Pastell, Kieron Moore and Gia Scala. After Pastell and Moore are killed, Scala takes Mitchum to a monastery, where he is picked up by Elisabeth Muller. Muller is a Greek patriot who was hired by German General Marius Goring to spy on Baker, with whom Baker has fallen in love. Knowing that Muller is helping Mitchum, Baker threatens to kill Muller's two children if she doesn't turn Mitchum over. Sebastian Cabot suddenly shows up to provide the possibility of an happy ending. Jocelyn Lane looks great as Bikel's dark haired sister who attempts to entice both Baker and Goring.

HEART OF A DOG (2015) - The coming together of Lou Reed and Laurie Anderson always seemed a bit mysterious, and this film sheds no light on their relationship. While the synopsis for this film usually mentions that Reed's death was an inspiration for the film, he's never mentioned. He sings "Turning Time Around" over the end credits during which a photo of him with the terrier Lolabelle is shown. The film is dedicated to him, but most of the film is taken up with Anderson's relationship with her dog Lolabelle. Lolabelle's death inspires Anderson to contemplate the meaning of love and death often through Tibetan and Buddhist philosophies. With impressionistic images, many shot on Anderson's iPhone, the film seems intent on creating a meditative mood in the viewer.

HORROR OF FRANKENSTEIN (1970) - Jimmy Sangster was working in Hollywood on TV movies when Hammer sent to him a new Frankenstein screenplay for him to possibly rewrite. Sangster wasn't interested unless he got the chance to direct. Hammer agreed, Sangster rewrote the script injecting in to it what he thought was humor. In retrospect, Sangster thought that the film would have been better if the old executives who knew how to make movies were still around and able to help him. In any case, this attempt to reboot the Hammer Frankenstein series with Ralph Bates was dreadful. 

MOONRAKER (1979) - Even by the low standards of the other Roger Moore James Bond movies, this is stupid. Interestingly, this is credited as a "Franco-British coproduction" which may explain why so many stalwarts of French cinema are wasted here including: Michel Londsdale, Corinne Clery, Jean-Pierre Castaldi, Guy Delorme and Marc Mazza. Toshiro Suga made one yearn for Burt Kwouk as Cato in the Pink Panther movies. Director Lewis Gilbert redeemed his reputation with his next film - EDUCATING RITA.

THE SEA WOLVES The Last Charge of the Calcutta Light Horse (1980) - When this movie came out, I dismissed seeing it. Who wants to see a "larky" combat movie set during World War 2 starring a bunch of older actors? Plus it was directed by Andrew V. McLaglen, a fellow who only made one movie that I liked - THE DEVIL'S BRIGADE, and I only liked that because it was the first film I saw after THE WILD BUNCH to employ alot of blood squibs during the climactic battle. SEA WOLVES came around on TCM so I decided to give it a look and it contained some surprises. 1) It is not a "larky" combat movie, though the music by Roy Budd often tries to pretend it is. 2) I never knew that Portugal had a colony in India called Goa which was officially neutral during World War 2. 3) This movie is based on a true story which was turned into a novel by James Leasor called BOARDING PARTY. McLaglen is unable to find the proper tone to balance the humor of sidelined British vets yearning to "get into the action" with the reality of combat. Plus a section featuring Roger Moore acting as a secret agent on the ground in Goa feels like a James Bond movie minus the intentional humor. "How about James Bond falling in love with an enemy agent that he has to kill?" As many of the technicians who worked on this film also worked on the James Bond series, this resemblance isn't too surprising. Heck, Matt Munro even sang a song over the closing credits. However, any movie that starts with Dan van Hussen and Robert Hoffmann in close up isn't completely worthless, but did Hoffmann pissoff cinematographer Tony Imi so that his face is never shown clearly? Casting Gregory Peck and David Niven obviously was intended to remind viewers of GUNS OF NAVARONE, but this film doesn't work the same way. There's quite a pile of recognizable British actors on show including Trevor Howard, Patrick Macnee, Patrick Allen, John Standing, etc. but few get a chance to stand out from the crowd. Producer Euan Lloyd was hoping that this film would continue the success he had with THE WILD GEESE.

TARZAN Y EL ARCO IRSIS, aka TARZAN E LA PANTERA NERA, aka TREASURE OF THE EMERALD CAVE, aka TARZAN AND THE BROWN PRINCE (1972) - Like TARZAN EN EL GRUTA DEL ORO, this film could easily have been set in South America, though the credits don't say so. It seems certain that all of the scenes with wild animals were filmed in Florida and that no one paid attention to what indigenous area they belonged. As Richard Rod, Ricardo Rodriguez continues his career playing Native Americans and he wants his followers to kill Tarzan. (He's called Tarzan on this English soundtrack.) Steve Hawkes as Tarzan knows that Rod wants to be the king of his tribe, now that the previous ruler has died. To become king, Rod has to best little boy Robin Aristorenas in a race to find where "the Green God" is hidden. Aristorenas has the map, but refuses help from Hawkes as he must do it himself to prove worthy of leadership. Meanwhile, American wild life catchers Angel del Pozo, Agata Flori and Peter Lee Lawrence are in the jungle hoping to make a bundle providing critters to zoos and circuses. Tarzan wants them to leave the animals alone, so Lawrence conspires with Rod to capture Hawkes thinking that a "white man of the jungle" would be a money-maker. Hearing about a cave filled with emeralds, the villains capture not only Hawkes, but also his swimming partner Kitty Swan, hoping that torturing her will get him to give up the location. She spills the beans and then Rod, del Pozo and Lawrence take off in a helicopter (From where in hell did that come?) to find the waterfall. Aristorenas finds a barrel and goes over the waterfall in order to swim underwater to find the cave. After too long, Hawkes does his animal call and an herd of elephants destroys the villains' camp and a lion sets our hero free. Repeating a shot from GRUTA DEL ORO, Hawkes and Swan say goodbye while riding elephants and Hawkes says that he knows a shortcut to the Emerald Cave. Swinging from tree to tree, Hawkes arrives as Rod and Aristorenas are fighting over the Green God statue. Aristorenas wants no help from our hero, and eventually kills Rod by using a slingshot to put a pointed emerald in Rod's head.Stopped from making off with the emeralds, Lawrence grabs Aristorenas and the Green God and takes off in the helicopter. Hawkes jumps onto a landing skid, saves the boy and the statue, and causes Lawrence to crash in a big ball of flames. Flori and del Pozo find some emeralds in his pocket, so they leave the jungle happy, while the film ends with the same shots of Hawkes and Swan swimming underwater that ended GRUTA DEL ORO. The copy of I saw of this film didn't seem as choppy at the copy viewed of GRUTA DEL ORO, so I concluded that director Manuel Cano was just a lousy storyteller, not the victim of a lousy copy. 


David Deal enjoyed:









Charles Gilbert watched:

The Wild, Wild West S01E24 B&W. 'The Night of the Druid's Blood'. Ross Martin's friend Don Rickles plays an evil magician linked to devil worship that doctor Rhys Williams employs to abduct eminent scientists. 

THE ADVENTURES OF SCARAMOUCHE (1963) Colorful costumer employs virtually full time circus atmosphere.  Despite Italian dialogue I was complelled for the duration just to see Michele Girardon and Gianna Maria Canale.

THE BEAST MUST DIE (1974) Amicus Production with Bahamian actor Calvin Lockhart as a big game hunter on the trail of loup garou. His palatial estate is venue to a host of guests on extended stay with one being a werewolf. With his high tech surveillance equipment he makes a game of discovering who. Too much like an Avengers episode. Peter Cushing and Anton Diffring are wasted on miscasting. Viewers are invited at 20 minutes from the ending to guess who is the werewolf. Svengoolie plays the 30 second theme of 'Final Jeopardy'. Virtually no monster makeup.

JOHN WYCKLIFFE : THE MORNINGSTAR (1984) English champion of holy scripture seeks to comfort the ignorant of superstition, and thus embarks on the mission to provide bibles for the Anglo masses. His efforts were thwarted by opposing peremptory councils of the 14th century church. And his followers called Lollards, much to his disapprobation, resorted to violence, even beheading Bishop of Canterbury Simon of Sudbury. He died of a stroke before the work was completed; his bones subsequently dug up and burned with the ashes symbolically scattered

JOHN HUS : A JOURNEY OF NO RETURN (2016) The declamation and imprisonment of Czech churchman John Hus parallels that of Wyckliffe. Also declared a heretic to the Holy Roman Church, he is compelled to recant or face execution at the stake.

UNDEFEATABLE (1993) Perky redhead waitress Kristi (Cynthia Rothrock) fights underground for remuneration of her sister Karen's college tuition. Her acrobatics and martial arts skills are brought to bear when a crazed rapist karateka murders Karen. Kristi gets a lot of exercise fighting established gangs in the mean time, and a policeman (John Miller) takes interest in her quest. Extremely moody soundtrack.

LASER MISSION (1989) The world's largest diamond is stolen by Russian operatives. CIA counterpart Brandon Lee is dispatched to South Africa to extract a laser scientist (Ernest Borgnine) who, it is later revealed, can couple it with lasers to create an atomic bomb. Both are being held at a diamond mine compound. Debi Monahan costars.

MANHATTAN CHASE (2000) Ex con (Loren Avedon) struggles to raise his young son as he sheds ties with the old drug gang. Cynthia Rothrock plays a NYPD cop in a back seat role.

HONOR AND GLORY (1993) John Miller (reminds me so.much of MMA legend Ken Shamrock) from UNDEFEATABLE gives a hammy performance as  megalomaniacal financier Jason Slade who arrogates a purge of the old guard left over from the days his dad was chief. He's also schemed a venal plan to purchase a weapons detonator stolen from the Russians. FBI agent Traci Pride (Cynthia Rothrock) takes case cues from her news reporter sister Joyce ( Donna Jason) who's been publicly covering the disreputable banker. And their father is a CIA agent closing in with a clandestine approach. Rothrock again gets star billing but not much celluloid time.

TIGER CLAWS (1991) Mysterious serial killer named Chong and known as the 'Death Dealer' (Bolo Yeung) in NYC leaves renowned martial artists with fatal claw marks. Two detectives (Cythia Rothrock and Jalal Merhi) are on the hunt. He goes undercover by joining a traditional Tiger dojo in Chinatown 

TIGER CLAWS 2 (1996) Chong was incarcerated in the first movie, and here has escaped on the way to trial with the help of arms dealers. They take the action to San Francisco where the two detectives from before engage in a Chinese New Years tournament. Cynthia now has shoulder length hair, and Merhi, who produced the film, has cut his pony tail.

TIGER CLAWS 3 (2000) The supernatural elememt is introduced with three malicious Chinese fighters, invulnerable dynamos of energy coming to life at a crowded magicians performance in NYC where the pair of detectives have returned for assignment. Linda (Cynthia R) is "killed" in a brawl with the three masters, as they protect Stryker the wisecraking magician (Loren Avedon). Surprise ending.


Bertrand van Wonterghem Highly enjoyed: 

Hauru no ugoku shiro / Howl’s moving castle (2004, Hayao Miyazaki)


Gojira / Gojira 1985  (1984, Koji Hashimoto)

The invaders – episode « Moonshot » (1966, Paul Wendkos)

Allo, allo – episode « The funeral » (1984, David Croft)

Forever – season 1 – episodes 1 & 2

Chuck – season 5 – episodes 2 & 3

Maeumui sori : reboot / The sound of your heart : reboot – season 1 – episodes 9 & 10

Gojira vs Biorante / Godzilla vs Biollante (1989, Kazuki Omori)

Mildly enjoyed

Carry on cruising (1961, Gerald Thomas)

Ghost lab (2020 Paween Purijitpanya)

Hashoter Hatov – season 1 – episode 6

Did not enjoyed:

Approaching the unknown (2016 Mark Elijah Rosenberg)

Hidden 2 (1993, Seth Pinsker)

Angel Rivera watched: 

...the latest episode of "Stargirl". The series has become one of my favorites to watch because as a kid growing up in the sixties, I really enjoyed the comic books featuring the JSA, the forerunner of the JLA. And while the series isn't about the JSA as I knew them, it provides an amalgamation of the JSA and of the eighties comic book series, "Infinity, Inc". which featured the "children" of the JSA and was a sort of sequel to the adventures of the JSA.
The TV series features a live-action version of both comic book series which is fun for me to watch and is well constructed as an adaptation of the comic book series. The series is well cast in their choice of actors for the heroes of the show as well as the villains. If you liked American comics from the DC brand featuring these characters as I do, it is well worth watching.

Aside from other TV series I am following (i.e., "Supergirl"; "Titans"; "Love Life"; "Younger"; Spike Lee's documentary series, "NYC Epicenters 9/11--2021 1/2") ; I also caught another Audie Murphy western, "Bullet for a Badman", which features Murphy and Darren McGavin as two former Texas Ranger buddies who are now on opposite sides of the law with McGavin now a bank robber whom Murphy has to form a posse to catch. Complicating maters is the posse who helps capture McGavin want him dead so they can split the money McGavin stole, amongst themselves. The friends then  join forces against  the corrupt posse. A minor subplot has Murphy married to McGavin's ex-wife and raising McGavin's son (unbeknownst to the child who calls Murphy, "Dad"!)
The film from 1964 features in its cast several actors who soon would star in famous TV series of the sixties, such as: Alan Hale, Jr. (Skipper on "Gilligan's Island" and Edward Platt (The Chief on "Get Smart") among others.

I also became interested in Disney's version of "John Carter" as there is a new comic book series based on the characters from Edgar Rice Burroughs "John Carter of Mars" series. I had not watched the movie since it debuted in 2012 and had purchased the DVD for my collection, but had not watched it at the time of purchase; so this was my first time watching it since then.

While I had my reservations about the choice for lead (Taylor Kitsch as John Carter), the female lead (Lynn Collins as the Princess of Mars, Dejah Thoris) was more pleasing. The film as a whole was a fairly faithful adaptation of ERB's first book, "A Princess of Mars", but probably could have been better served as a mini-series like "Game of Thrones" (although the movie had little in the way of sex, which I believe may have helped "Game... in its audience interest, but that's just my opinion as I never watched the series.) The movie when it was originally released was a box-office failure. But I think  that may be more because of the way it was advertised, than its faults. The film was advertised as a precursor of "Star Wars' and those with that mindset would have been disappointed as there are no battles in space and  no villain like Darth Vader to hiss and boo.


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