Tag Archive: Lyle R. Wheeler

Kiss Of Death

BBB.5 (out of 5) Victor Mature goes to the joint for robbery but needs to get out when he finds out that his wife has killed herself and orphaned their two little girls.… Continue reading

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The Luck of the Irish

B.5 (out of 5) Tyrone Power plays an American journalist who, while traveling through Ireland, is drawn to its beauty and charm both by an innkeeper’s daughter (Anne Baxter) and the sniveling interference… Continue reading

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House of Strangers

BBBB (out of 5) Edward G. Robinson lords over this dark, upsetting drama that focuses on family tragedy but plays like film noir. Richard Conte gets out of prison after seven years and… Continue reading

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Three Coins In The Fountain

BB (out of 5) Maggie McNamara comes to Rome to work as a secretary at the United States Distribution Agency (whatever that is) and becomes friends with two women doing similar work, one a… Continue reading

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Broken Arrow (1950)

BBB.5 (out of 5) James Stewart is riding through barren plains, searching for precious metals when he comes across an Apache teenager who is badly injured. He heals the boy and is subsequently welcomed… Continue reading

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Doll Face

BB.5 (out of 5) Gypsy Rose Lee’s successful play is turned into a tepid musical comedy starring Vivian Blaine as a burlesque artist trying to break into legitimate performance. After she is rejected for… Continue reading

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The Seven Year Itch

BBB.5 (out of 5) Billy Wilder comedy that is most notable for the now historic image of Marilyn Monroe standing above a subway grate while her dress billows in the rushing air coming from… Continue reading

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Nothing Sacred

BBBB (out of 5) Carole Lombard‘s only Technicolour film is this hysterical comedy about a small-town woman mistakenly thought to be dying of internal poisoning, until her doctor points out otherwise. A New York… Continue reading

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The Day The Earth Stood Still (1951)

BBBB.5 (out of 5) The imagery in this groundbreaking science-fiction film is unforgettable: a perfectly designed spaceship arrives from the sky and lands in Washington; a giant robot emerges from it but doesn’t… Continue reading

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Love Me Tender

BB.5 (out of 5) Ridiculous melodrama that is merely an excuse for Elvis Presley (in his film debut) to belt out his many (totally anachronistic) hit songs. He and his family have survived the… Continue reading

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The Best Of Everything

BBB (out of 5) This film, and the novel upon which it is based, must have seemed shockingly modern upon first being unleashed to the public:  it deals with single party girls and… Continue reading

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Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter?

BBBB (out of 5) The rise of consumer culture in post-war America and the increased obsession with celebrity that predominates the rest of the century are all predicted with perfect accuracy in this… Continue reading

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The Girl Can’t Help It

BBB.5 (out of 5) Tom Ewell is pressured by a gangster (Edmond O’Brien) to turn his blonde bombshell of a girlfriend (Jayne Mansfield) into a singing sensation. Ewell agrees to do it (he needs… Continue reading

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Unfaithfully Yours

BBBB (out of 5) Preston Sturges wrote and directed this hilarious comedy of marital jealousy. World-renowned conductor Rex Harrison is reunited with his lovely wife Linda Darnell after months spent on tour, and is distraught… Continue reading

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The Big Lift

BBB (out of 5) Following the second World War, Russia’s blockade of Berlin cuts off its access to the outside world, prompting the Allies to airlift food and medical supplies into the city… Continue reading

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Let’s Make It Legal

BB (out of 5) Claudette Colbert and Macdonald Carey are on the brink of divorce when Colbert’s old boyfriend (Zachary Scott) suddenly swings into town. Would this film even be remember if it weren’t for… Continue reading

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Peyton Place

BBBB (out of 5) The bestselling novel about sex and scandal in small-town America reaches the big screen with surprisingly few compromises.  Lana Turner plays a single mother trying to raise her daughter (Diane… Continue reading

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Intermezzo (Intermezzo: A Love Story)

BBB (out of 5) Ingrid Bergman was so impressive in the original Swedish 1936 version of this film that producer David O. Selznick made the American remake her English-language debut when he brought her… Continue reading

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Bigger Than Life

BBB (out of 5) A happily married schoolteacher (James Mason) is beset by pain and forced to see a doctor about it; he discovers that he has a rare form of nerve disease… Continue reading

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Advise & Consent

BBBB.5 (out of 5) Otto Preminger made waves when he originally released this film, ignoring the “Condemned” rating given by the Catholic Legion Of Decency and releasing it without their approval; when the… Continue reading

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The Cardinal

BBBB (out of 5) Otto Preminger exposed the complicated morality of American politics in 1962’s Advise And Consent, then bit off an even bigger piece to chew the following year with this sobering… Continue reading

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How To Marry A Millionaire

BBBB (out of 5) One of the most enjoyable Cinemascope comedies of the fifties and one of Marilyn Monroe‘s funniest films. In this bright and colourful adventure she, Lauren Bacall and Betty Grable play three… Continue reading

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River Of No Return

BB.5 (out of 5) One of Marilyn’s worst movies is this lame river-rafting adventure that starts with the family life of brutish Robert Mitchum and his little son. Monroe hires Mitchum to track down… Continue reading

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Phone Call From A Stranger

BBB (out of 5) After a plane crash takes the lives of several people, survivor Gary Merrill takes it upon himself to meet with all the victims’ families and tell them of his last… Continue reading

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Woman’s World

BBB (out of 5) This film belongs beside the Sirkian melodramas of the 1950s that seemed harmless but really had important social messages underlining them, though in this case the message isn’t too… Continue reading

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Laura

BBBBB (out of 5) Great murder mystery about an obsession that borders on necrophilia. Dana Andrews plays a police detective assigned to a homicide case when a prominent socialite (Gene Tierney) is assumed dead.… Continue reading

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Cluny Brown

BBBB (out of 5) Jennifer Jones is delightful in this excellent, late Lubitsch film, as a London plumber’s daughter who has an obsession with clearing drainpipes. When her father decides to put her into… Continue reading

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Journey To The Center Of The Earth (1959)

BBB (out of 5) New advances in stop-motion animation technology were encouraging movie producers of the fifties to create lots of deliciously pulpy science-fiction films for mass audiences to enjoy. For a few… Continue reading

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State Fair

BBB.5 (out of 5) When Twentieth Century-Fox decided to remake their ever-popular Will Rogers comedy of 1933 for audiences of the forties, their decision to make it a musical brought them to the… Continue reading

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With A Song In My Heart

BBBB (out of 5) Enormously enjoyable musical biopic of World World II songstress Jane Frohman. Frohman was on the rise in her exceptional recording career when an airplane accident injured her leg and… Continue reading

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There’s No Business Like Show Business

BB.5 (out of 5) The life of a show business family is the subject of this shallow musical. Ethel Merman and Dan Dailey are the parents, while Donald O’Connor and Mitzi Gaynor are the kids, both of… Continue reading

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The King And I

BBBBB (out of 5) Deborah Kerr glows as Anna Leonowens, a true-life schoolteacher who was invited by the King of Siam (Yul Brynner) to come and teach his many children. She arrives full of… Continue reading

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Can-Can

BBB (out of 5) In nineteenth century Paris the lewd dance of the Can-Can is forbidden, but Shirley MacLaine has been performing it in her Montmartre nightclub, where she and the other girls keep… Continue reading

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The Virgin Queen

BBB.5 (out of 5) Bette Davis played Queen Elizabeth I twice in her career, first in The Private Lives of Elizabeth and Essex and then again sixteen years later in this costume soaper. While… Continue reading

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Twelve O’Clock High

BBBB (out of 5) Gregory Peck becomes the captain of a squadron of fighter pilots in World War II, but his inability to separate himself personally from his men’s lives before sending them out… Continue reading

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Love Is A Many-Splendored Thing

BBB.5 (out of 5) Melodrama was hardly ever more purple than in this sudsy romance. William Holden plays a G.I. posted in Korea who meets a half-European, half-Asian woman (Jennifer Jones with heavy… Continue reading

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Carousel

BBBB (out of 5) This Rodgers and Hammerstein musical features the best script of all the films made from their musicals, but Rodgers’ fantastic score (probably his most beautiful ever) was cut down… Continue reading

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Beloved Infidel

BB (out of 5) Deborah Kerr fans are advised to steer clear of this terrible biopic about the relationship between self-destructive writer F. Scott Fitzgerald and celebrity columnist Sheilah Grahame. Grahame is at… Continue reading

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We’re Not Married

BB.5 (out of 5) A bevy of happily married couples each get the same letter telling them that the judge who joined them in holy matrimony was legally unauthorized to do so, and… Continue reading

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Bus Stop

BBBB (out of 5) Marilyn Monroe‘s first film after returning from studying at the Actors Studio in New York City was this excellent comedy-drama directed by Joshua Logan. Don Murray gives a great… Continue reading

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My Darling Clementine

BBBB.5 (out of 5) John Ford didn’t just make movies, the man was the movies; he manages to cross all paths with many of his excellent films, providing myth and archetype as well… Continue reading

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Don’t Bother To Knock

BB.5 (out of 5) Marilyn Monroe plays a mentally unbalanced young woman who is hired by a gentlemen to look after his little girl in their hotel room while he spends the evening at… Continue reading

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Call Me Mister

BBB.5 (out of 5) Throwback to wartime musicals stars Betty Grable as a USO entertainer who is reunited with the man she turned down years before. The usual complications in these backstage melodramas ensues,… Continue reading

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Desk Set

BBB (out of 5) Though it isn’t up to the standards of their earlier work like Woman Of The Year or Adam’s Rib, this Katharine Hepburn–Spencer Tracy vehicle is colourful and fun. He plays… Continue reading

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