Thursday, January 14, 2016

Film Round-Up

I caught a few films on TV last week.

The most recent film is Mad Max: Fury Road. Based on the reviews I read on IMDB, the film is polarizing: people love it or hate it. I'm not a huge fan of chase scenes, and that's something like 95 percent of the movie. But for the most part, I enjoyed it.

The Woman on Pier 13 is one of my noir course films that I didn't get around to watching. Brad Collins (Robert Ryan) is a young Communist who thought he left the party, but couldn't escape forever. I like this film although it's hard for me from this point in time to take the villainy of the Communist Party so seriously. But besides the Communist Party angle, the story and acting are strong. I like the character of Brad's wife Nan Collins (Laraine Day.) At first, she's rather passive and submissive. But after her brother is killed, she goes into action. Nan does have to be rescued, but at least she tries.

The Racket also stars Robert Ryan and features William Talman (who plays a Communist enforcer in The Woman on Pier 13.) Here Ryan is a local crime boss whose violent ways clash with the national outfit. Robert Mitchum is the honest police captain who beats the mob.

The Big Sleep stars Humphrey Bogart as Philip Marlowe. It's an intriguing but confusing story, with additional scenes written and filmed to beef up the romantic relationship between Bogart and Lauren Bacall. I wish I could have seen the original version. 

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