Saturday, 14 December 2013
Thanks to Matthew Coniam for another questionnaire (and plus I also saw Deadly Discovery (1992), Desperation Highway (1996) and In Till You Die from DANCEBUY/Digital video Dreams/Fremantle/Thames/Talkback Thames, all of which were bloody shite
1. Which actors do you always (or did you always) mix-up?
Oh, Jack Albertson and Lloyd Nolan. The fact one appeared in The Poseidon Adventure and the other in Airport, and apparently both in a TV movie opposite Danny Nolan makes things more confusing. Aubrey Morris and Freddie Jones, and possibly Aubrey Morris and Norman Bird. Oh yes, and Geoffrey Whitehead and Geoffrey Bayldon.
2. Gidget or Beach Party?
The British equivalent - Summer Holiday (1963).
3. Favorite Movie Outfit?
I have no idea.
4. If you could be ANY character in ANY movie...who would you choose?
I would be Clarence Woolsey in Joe Dante's Matinee. or Benny U Murdoch in Eskimo Nell.
5. If you could marry ANY character in ANY movie...who would you choose?
I have no idea, just any girl who would be attractive enough and like me for who I am.
6. If you could live in ANY movie...which would you choose?
Carry On Abroad (1972).
7. Black & White movies you wish were in Technicolor, or vice-versa?
Hmm, I'd like to have seen perhaps the 1965 Ten Little Indians in colour.
8. Favorite Movie Soundtrack?
I don't know - Exorcist II - The Heretic is fabulous. Moonraker has a great one.
9. Favorite Movie Dance Sequence?
The bit in Rising Damp (1980) where the camp tailor says "Saturday Night Fever", and bizarrely Rigsby fantasises that he and Miss Jones are John Travolta and Olivia Newton John in Grease, and he does this unbearable but oddly endearing dance move, which is essentially shaking his head with his hands attached to his ears.
10. Coolest Movie Star?
11. Sophia or Gina
Screamy middle-aged Sophia - The ITC years.
12. "Isn't It Romantic" in most Billy Wilder films, or "Red River Valley"
"Isn't it dreary?" in Pete Walker films
13. If you could re-cast ANY role in ANY movie, what would it be?
Hmm, there are the intriguing what-ifs. Like Ronnie Barker as the butler in Trading Places or Inspector Max Bygraves in Frenzy. Lewis Collins should have been Bond in For Your Eyes Only and A View To A Kill, the latter being heavily rewritten to make it less of an ITV adventure equivalent of Last of the Summer Wine, possibly not Octopussy, as that plays to Moore's strengths, unless it was rewritten. Christopher Lee or Peter Cushing as Loomis in Halloween.
14. Favorite movie character with your first name?
15.One movie that should NEVER be remade? (under THE THREAT OF A SLOW, PAINFUL DEATH!)
An American Werewolf in London.
16. Actor or Actress who you would love to be best friends with?
The entire cast of Twilight to convincingly persuade them to make something better.
17. Are you an Oscar or a Felix?
A bit of both.
18. Actor/Actress you originally hated and now love?
I used to hate any actor who played the Doctor, for I believed Davros would turn up.
19.Actor/Actress you originally loved and now don't like?
Mr. Johnny Depp.
20. Favorite performance that was looked over by Oscar? (Not to be confused with the aforementioned Oscar of Felix fame.)
21. Bewitched or I Dream of Jeannie?
To be honest, they all blend into one glorious whole for me.
22. Hannibal Heyes or Kid Curry? (Hint for those who don't know who they are: pick Hannibal Heyes.)
None of them.
23. Favorite Style Icon: Fred Astaire or Cary Grant?
The dwarf in Don't Look Now.
24. Single most favorite movie scene EVER?
Hmm, I have no idea.
25. Movie you really "should" see, but have subconsciously avoiding for who knows what reason?
Oh god, for many years it was Cannibal Holocaust, but now that I have seen that. The Hobbit, the Twilight films and so on I have all avoided. I think I would like some scenes in the Hobbit for their Harryhausen-ish invention plus it has Sylvester McCoy, but I was bored stiff by the two Lord of the Rings films I saw in the cinema.
26. Movie quote you find yourself most often repeating in real life?
"No!" or "That's enough!" from An American Werewolf in London.
27. 50's Westerns or 60's Spies? (I can't even answer this myself...but you have to! MWAHAHAHA! - Millie)
28. Favorite splashy, colorful, obnoxious 50's musical?
What's Opera, Doc? (1957)
29. Favorite film setting (example: Rome, Paris, Seattle, Siberia, Chile, Sahara Desert, etc)
London, dense, foggy, on a backlot.
30. If you could own the entire wardrobe of any film, which would it be?
The one in the Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.
31. Carol Burnette or Lucille Ball?
I only know the former from Annie, and the latter as a caterwauling TV lady. The latter.
32. Favorite Voice. Ever. Period?
Hmm, Brian Glover? Possibly, a Northern English accent at any rate.
33. Favorite movie that takes place in your home-state?
I don't have a state, so I will go by county. The thing is, there's not an awful lot of films SET in Wicklow, compared to the hundreds made in Wicklow, due to Wicklow being the home of Ardmore Studios, Ireland's topand for many years ONLY film-making paradise. So I'll just punt for Zardoz. Which is filmed entirely in Wicklow, but set in an Anglophone nowhereland that seems to be post-apocalyptic Britain but could easily be post-apocalyptic Wicklow. Oh, if you mean state by country, then, hmm, the thing is films set in Ireland kind of do my head in. So, I'll keep with Zardoz. It is rubbish, but it endearing rubbish, and the sheer weirdness and balls of it (not Connery's) is mind-blowing for a major studio picture. This is what it means to escape type-casting.
34. Which actors would you want for relatives? (Mother, Father, Grandma, Crazy Aunt, annoying cousin, older brother, etc...)
Leonard Rossiter as Dad, Roy Barraclough and Les Dawson as Aunties.
What I have seen.
Outland (1981) - Yawn, Connery is Scottish space marshal alongside UK-based Yanks. Peter Boyle is odd. Kika Markham is wife. Substandard.
The Guns of Navarone (1961) - Rollick on. J Lee Thompson's direction and an A-class cast keep this a Bank Holiday treat.
Orphan (2009) - Couple adopt cute Estonian girl (Isabelle Fuhrman). Girl turns out to be not as nice and senstiive, but a 33 year old Estonian criminal who seduces dads and then kills them. 12-year-old Fuhrman is creepy. Everyone else is poorly characterised and could have done without the deaf sister. There should be a sequel with the character of Esther/Leena doing a Stepfather and visiting/adopted by another family.
The Dirty Dozen - The Next Mission - Marvin, Borgnine and Jaeckel wander around England posing as France and Germany, still in World War Two, but looking old (apart from Marvin who basically looks the same), along with a new team of US TV/B-rate stars, Ken Wahl, Sonny Landham, that bloke who played the American priest Fr. Buzz Cagney in Father Ted. Poor.
The Hired Hand (1971) - Boring "countercultural" western starring and directed by Peter Fonda, starring alongside Warren Oates as Appalachians. Watch Race With The Devil instead. It has campervans.
Sightseers (2012) - Brilliantly black comedy, Ben Whealtey's best so far (His A Field IN England is interesting and flawed, kind of like Kevin Brownlow's 1978 film Wisntanley, also a weird b/w English Civil War drama) and honest in its portrayal of easily angered caravan enthusiasts, with a homicidal twist. Steve Oram and Alice Lowe are great. There's transsexual dogs with personality crisis, a murder involving killing a grouchy man who refuses to pick up his own litter, so he is killed in a stone circle and his trousers pulled down to make it look like a sex killing. And successfully de-Christmasitises Frankie Goes To Hollywood's The Power of Love.
The Terrorists (1974) - Boring action film with Sean Connery. Low budget, most of it spent on Connery. Like a bad Alistair MacLean film.
Monday, 2 December 2013
Charlton Heston turned down the role of Robert Thorn in The Omen (1976). He was no stranger to sci-fi and horror, with the Naked Jungle in 1954 and then in the 1960s and 1970s, Planet of the Apes, the Omega Man, Soylent Green, Earthquake and the fact that the role went to Gregory Peck and then the film became a roaring success must have made Charlton fire his prize pistol in the air in anger at making such a mistake. So he decided to capture lightning in a bottle, and duly was born this baby.
An adaptation of Bram Stoker's The Jewel of Seven Stars, previously adapted in 1971 by Hammer as Blood from the Mummy's Tomb, this version moves it like Hammer to modern-day London, but it gives it a big Omen-type rescaping. Heston is wobbly-accented British archaeologist Matt Corbeck, who in 1962 (though 1970s cars are seen) finds the tomb of mysterious, barely known to exist Queen Kara with his mistress/assistant Susannah York while his wife, Jill Townsend is pregnant with baby Margaret, looked after by curiously un-Egyptian Miriam Margolyes. They find the tomb, but an Arab assistant is hung and the pregnancy is rough. 18 Years later, Queen Kara's tomb's glass breaks. And Margaret (Stephanie "silly-named bit of eye candy off Remington Steele" Zimbalist) is coming home for her eighteenth birthday to see Dad who now due to an attempt to make him older (having tried to make him look younger miserably), now looks like Rolf Harris. And Mags now has hair like an Egyptian.
It is a fairly anaemic British horror, from that post-Omen/post-Hammer closure bust, of Norman J Warren, of ITC, of Little Hitlers and Richard Burton - Horror Star. Director Mike Newell, later attempting to drive British film into an early grave with Four Weddings and A Funeral (1994) and then directed by the fourth Harry Potter. Nadim Sawalha, British film and TV's go-to-Middle Eastern person appears as Heston's sidekick, Ian "Emperor Palpatine off Star Wars" MacDiarmid plays a cardigan-wearing psychologist who gets stabbed by Zimbalist, and the romantic male juvenile lead is Patrick Drury, whose battles with his would-be girlfriend would be rivalled by his role as much-abused/much-abusing husband John O'Leary in Father Ted. There are only a few unmemorable Omen-style death scenes, and even Sawalha is left unscathed. There's nice cinematography by Jack Cardiff, echoing his work on 1978's Death On The Nile, as this film boosts genuine location filming in Egypt, unlike many Mummy films, but he would have been a better director, having done the insane The Mutations (1974).
The ending, whilst close to Stoker seems to have been used to inject a post-Omen negative ending/sequel hook. "You evil bitch!".
In my opinion, it should have had Sawalha and Margolyes as victim, Sawalha disfigured by hot toast coming out of a toaster too fast and Margolyes' fat frame smashed in by a wobbly incubator. Perhaps, they were saving for the sequel.
I've also been watching Killer's Moon (1978) Alan Birkinshaw and his sister Fay Weldon's schoolgirl choir versus middle-aged Droog/mental patients who believe they're in a dream. With men shagging cross-dressing corpses in the belief it is their mother, singing, singing, US reality TV star Lisa Van der Pump and Hilda "Nana Moon in Eastenders" Braid, Linda Hayden's sometime lookalike sister Jane now less like her (sis was in the much bigger British horror The Boys From Brazil), a three-legged dog and a bizarre song by the bloke who sang the theme tune to "Goodnight, Sweetheart", Val Doonican backing singer Nick Curtis.