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Saturday Night at the Movies

18/01/2020

1 Four Faces West (1948) – Joel McCrea, Frances Dee, Charles Bickford

 

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An unknown little gem – a Western that’s not exactly a western, but more of an adult drama and love story set in the West. I’m a big Joel McCrea fan – in fact he’s one of my favorite male actors – but had never even heard of this film. While it’s a Western in the sense that it is set in the west, it’s not standard-issue. There are no gunfights, it’s not the prototypal story of rival families or a gang terrorizing a community. It’s a personal story of a man with scruples and heart, set in the West. What also sets it apart is that the female lead – Joel’s real-life wife Frances Dee – is strong-willed, fearless, her own person, and not the shrinking violet as women are usually portrayed in Westerns. The movie is more thoughtful, more adult, with moral conundrums. And Latinos are not stereotyped as poor, happy, ignorant peasants, but given more rounded perspective. And the scenery is not stereotypical, very interesting and local. Here’s an external link that talks about it: http://thegreatwesternmovies.com/2013…

 

2 The Squeaker (1937) – Edmund Lowe, Alastair Sim, Robert Newton

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A crime thriller from 1937, “The squeaker” was made at Denham Studios for Alexander Korda’s London films, and stars imported Edmund Lowe as a Scotland Yard detective on the trail of a notorious jewel fence known as the squeaker, whose identity is unknown even to those in the underworld. The film has an impressive cast, with Robert Newton as a small time thief and there’s also comic support from Alastair Sim, as a newspaper reporter also on the trail of the squeaker. The film is badly in need of digital restoration which may explain why its never been released on dvd in the UK, or been seen on UK tv for many years. Despite these imperfections the film is entertaining and well worth a view, even if the identity of the squeaker becomes obvious early on. I’ve featured “The squeaker” before on this channel and it will be removed again in due course, so please view soon if you’d like to see it.

3 Rome Express (1932) 

British film from the early Thirties

4 Time Table (1956) – Mark Norman Felicia Farr,Wesley Addy,Jack Klugman

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