Tall Story (1960)

JOSHUA LOGAN Bil’s rating (out of 5): B.  USA, 1960.  Mansfield Productions.  Screenplay by Julius J. Epstein, based on the play by Howard Lindsay and Russel Crouse, from the novel by Howard Nemerov.  Cinematography by Ellsworth Fredericks.  Produced by Joshua Logan.  Music by Cyril J. Mockridge.  Production Design by Jack Poplin.  Costume Design by Kay Nelson.  Film Editing by Philip W. Anderson.  Golden Globe Awards…

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The Guns Of Navarone

BBBB (out of 5) The British fighting the Nazis during World War II need to get across the Mediterranean and secure loyalty from Turkey, which has yet to pick a side. To get there they need to pass the (fictional) Greek island of Navarone, currently occupied by the Germans who have giant weapons pointed out…

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King of Kings

BBB (out of 5) Biblical epics were not hard to come by in the post-Robe era, perfect for the Cinemascope generation to be dazzled while fulfilling their good Christian duties at the movies, a number of them focusing on the life of Jesus Christ.   Being directed by Nicholas Ray would, you would hope, give…

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One, Two, Three

BBB (out of 5) James Cagney gives a terrific comedic performance as an executive for Coca-Cola in West Berlin who gets nervous about his job when the American boss (Howard St. John) comes over for a visit. Things get pretty heated when the boss’s airheaded daughter falls in love and eventually elopes with a vehemently dedicated…

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The Parent Trap

BBB (out of 5) Disney could have found no better use for Hayley Mills after her Oscar-winning performance in Pollyanna than to come up with a film that features her twice. While spending the summer at a camp she has no desire to be at, Mills meets a young lady who is her exact height, weight,…

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The Hustler

BBBB.5 (out of 5) Paul Newman solidified his already established status with this perennial classic. Billiards became the hot game of the day after its release, a story about a pooltable hustler (Newman) who is just as sharp with the ladies as he is with his cue. Deciding in his reckless ambition to take on a…

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West Side Story

BBBB (out of 5) Fantastic adaptation of William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet takes the tale of star-crossed lovers and sets it as a musical among warring gangs of 1960s New York. Jerome Robbins’ energetic choreography is the main highlight of this colourful film, about a young Puerto Rican girl named Maria (Natalie Wood, with singing…

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Lover Come Back

BBBB (out of 5) After the immense success of Pillow Talk, Rock Hudson and Doris Day were reunited for another sharply written comedy delight. She is once again a working woman who is manipulated by Hudson’s lifelong bachelor, this time as professional rivals working for different advertising agencies. When she discovers that he is working on a…

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Judgment At Nuremberg

BBBB (out of 5) Abby Mann adapted his riveting teleplay for the big screen and the results are mostly impressive.  Spencer Tracy is excellent as an American judge brought to Nuremberg, Germany after World War II to sit on the international panel of judges who are trying Nazi officers for war crimes. An incredible array of…

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Flower Drum Song

BBB (out of 5) The least known of the Rodgers and Hammerstein movie musicals is this charmer that features an all-Asian cast. It centres around a young girl (Miyoshi Umeki) who immigrates illegally with her father from China to San Francisco to marry her arranged fiance (Jack Soo). Soo has a mistress already (Nancy Kwan),…

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Fanny

BBBB (out of 5) Marcel Pagnol’s touching stories, previously filmed as a trilogy in France in the 1930s, were transformed into a hit Broadway musical in the fifties. When the production reached the big screen, all the songs had been excised and left as background music, but the story itself was still just as delightful…

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Splendor In The Grass

BBB.5 (out of 5) Though this film doesn’t always succeed on its dramatic turf, how many other films were being made in the sixties about women suffering from society’s double standards?  Natalie Wood is fantastic as a Depression-era school girl who is constantly being pressured by her football star boyfriend (Warren Beatty in his starring debut) to…

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