The Driver’s Seat (Identikit)

BB (out of 5) Elizabeth Taylor appears in one of her strangest films as a woman wandering Italy in search of something bad.  Picking up an assortment of random strangers as companions or random flings, she appears to be emotionally disturbed and out for trouble, the plot jumping around as we see police investigate the messes…

Rate this:

Under Milk Wood

BB.5 (out of 5) Dylan Thomas’ popular radio drama is adapted to film with a number of stars making brief and, in some cases, obscure appearances, including Peter O’Toole, Elizabeth Taylor, Glynis Johns, and Richard Burton, whose own recording of the original text is one of his most beloved career accomplishments.  Made in a style looking to recapture…

Rate this:

Julia Misbehaves

BBBB (out of 5) Positively delightful, this is one of many films that Greer Garson and Walter Pidgeon made together but the only time they tried comedy.  She plays a capricious theatrical actress who long ago left behind her aristocratic husband (Pidgeon) and infant daughter, now almost two decades later still surviving by her wits…

Rate this:

The Only Game In Town (1970)

GEORGE STEVENS Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BB.5.  USA, 1970.  Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation.  Screenplay by Frank D. Gilroy, based on his play.  Cinematography by Henri Decae.  Produced by Fred Kohlmar.  Music by Maurice Jarre.  Production Design by Herman A. Blumenthal, Auguste Capelier.  Costume Design by Mia Fonssagrives, Vicki Tiel.  Film Editing by John W. Holmes, William Sands, Pat Shade.   Vegas showgirl Elizabeth Taylor stops at a divey bar…

Rate this:

The White Cliffs Of Dover (1944)

CLARENCE BROWN Bil’s rating (out of 5):   BBB.  USA, 1944.  Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.  Screenplay by Claudine West, Jan Lustig, George Froeschel, additional poetry by Robert Nathan, based on the poem by Alice Duer Miller.  Cinematography by George J. Folsey.  Produced by Clarence Brown, Sidney Franklin.  Music by Herbert Stothart.  Production Design by Cedric Gibbons.  Costume Design by Gile Steele.  Film Editing by Robert Kern.  Academy Awards 1944.  …

Rate this:

Night Watch

BB.5 (out of 5) The closest Elizabeth Taylor ever came to starring in a horror movie was her appearance in this quickie thriller that has only a few brief chill-worthy moments.  She is recovering from a nervous breakdown, her husband (Laurence Harvey, in one of last films, released the year he died) and best friend (Billie…

Rate this:

The Blue Bird

B (out of 5) The first Soviet-American co-production, meant to outwit the political battles of the Cold War by showing the unifying nature of art; the effort was something of a failure since reports were that there was no peace on the film’s set and, more telling, it did not lead to more projects of…

Rate this:

Love Is Better Than Ever (The Light Fantastic)

BBB (out of 5) Big time New York theatrical agent Larry Parks meets the owner of  a children’s dance studio (Elizabeth Taylor) and courts her during an out of town dance convention she is attending.  He drops her when they’re ready to go back to their regular lives, telling her that they were only ever…

Rate this:

The Girl Who Had Everything

BB.5 (out of 5) After a Washington attorney (William Powell) succeeds in getting a gangster (Fernando Lamas) acquitted of illegal gaming charges, he invites him over to his house where the hood spots Powell’s gorgeous daughter (Elizabeth Taylor) and they fall in lust.  She is convinced that he’s the right future for her and drops…

Rate this:

Callaway Went Thataway (The Star Said No)

BBB.5 (out of 5) Old westerns starring Howard Keel are being played on television and thrilling the kids who watch them on the small screen with their parents.  Film producers realize this is a great opportunity to resurrect the star’s career and put new films out in theatres that will net a huge profit, but there’s one…

Rate this:

X Y & Zee (Zee And Co.)

BBB (out of 5) Trash should always be this fun. Elizabeth Taylor and Michael Caine have no end of fun camping it up in this melodrama, in which they play a married couple who have their brittle relationship tested when Caine meets Susannah York at a party and begins an affair with her.  She’s a soft-spoken widow with whom…

Rate this:

Boom

BB.5 (out of 5) You’ll wonder if perhaps the stars and crew of this film were vacationing on Capri and had to improvise a movie to justify making someone else pay the bills. Richard Burton plays a poor poet who shows up at the private island villa of an ornery, wealthy woman (Elizabeth Taylor) who spits nails just…

Rate this: