Quicksand (1950)

IRVING PICHEL Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB.5.  USA, 1950.  Samuel H. Stiefel Productions.  Screenplay by Robert Smith.  Cinematography by Lionel Lindon.  Produced by Mort Briskin.  Music by Louis Gruenberg.  Production Design by Boris Leven.  Costume Design by Joan Joseff.  Film Editing by Walter Thompson.   Mickey Rooney plays an auto mechanic who is out drinking with the boys when he spots a dangerous blonde…

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Nightmare Alley (1947)

EDMUND GOULDING Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBBB.  USA, 1947.  Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation.  Screenplay by Jules Furthman, based on the novel by William Lindsay Gresham.  Cinematography by Lee Garmes.  Produced by George Jessel.  Music by  Cyril J. Mockridge.  Production Design by J. Russell Spencer, Lyle R. Wheeler.  Costume Design by Bonnie Cashin.  Film Editing by  Barbara McLean.   Tyrone Power plays the member of a carnival troop…

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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. He squeals on a psychotic mobster (Richard Widmark) and is released to the world and to a new wife (an excellent Coleen…

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Drums In The Deep South

BB.5 (out of 5) Barbara Payton‘s beautiful life on her southern plantation is interrupted by the outbreak of Civil War, which sends her husband up north to fight and brings home an old flame who is still in love with her.  He himself has his life complicated by the fact that his best friend is…

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Gentlemen Prefer Blondes

BB.5 (out of 5) Marilyn Monroe established herself as a luminous movie star with this hilarious musical comedy that is all delight and no substance. She and Jane Russell play a couple of beautiful showgirls who board an ocean liner for France where Monroe’s millionaire boyfriend (Tommy Noonan) is meeting them. To ensure her fidelity, Noonan has…

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Boomerang!

BBB.5 (out of 5) An elderly minister is about to cross the street in his quiet Connecticut town when he is gunned down by an unknown assailant who then flees. The case captures the attention of the entire state when Arthur Kennedy is fingered by a disparate group of witnesses who believe without a doubt…

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Father Of The Bride (1950)

BBBB (out of 5) Spencer Tracy is the put-upon father whose life is turned upside down when his magnificently beautiful daughter (Elizabeth Taylor) announces that she is getting married. He is immediately thrust into a whirlwind of wedding preparations, mounting bills and one emotional crisis after another. Vincente Minnelli allows the film to have a picture-perfect…

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Sleeping Beauty

BBB (out of 5) This Cinemascope animated film features beautiful artwork inspired by Russian folk art and is presented with Tchaikovsky’s Sleeping Beauty themes as background music (with some lyrics added for the film). Charles Perreault’s famous story is of a young woman cursed from birth to die at the age of sixteen by an…

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Joan Of Arc

BB (out of 5) Dry, clunky adaptation of Maxwell Anderson’s play, one of many films on the subject of the Maid Of Orleans that has failed to win audiences over (Preminger’s version based on the Shaw play is another example; perhaps Dreyer’s Passion of Joan Of Arc ruined it for everyone?) Ingrid Bergman gives an unconvincing…

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