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Love It or Shove It: Classic Movie Edition

Classic Film & TV Cafe Posted by Rick29 on Jun 22, 2017

In this new occasional feature, we'll make a statement about classic cinema and then ask our panel of movie experts to "love it" (they agree) or "shove it" (they disagree). It should be a fun way to get some different perspectives. This month, our expert panel is comprised of: Connie Metzinger from read more

The Case of the Unlikeliest Charlie Chan

Classic Film & TV Cafe Posted by Rick29 on Jun 19, 2017

Ross Martin as Charlie Chan. Mystery TV series were on the rise again in 1970 with NBC preparing to launch its NBC Mystery Movie franchise. That umbrella series would feature sleuths who were rumpled and sly (Columbo), married to mischievous spouses (McMillan & Wife), and transported read more

Billy Wilder's Game of Deception...and the Wonderment of Jack Lemmon

Classic Film & TV Cafe Posted by Rick29 on Jun 14, 2017

Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon. It can be a challenge to review a classic like Billy Wilder's Some Like It Hot, because so much has been written about it. So, instead of a traditional review, I want to focus on Wilder's theme of deception and also pay tribute to that marvelous actor known as Jack Lemm read more

James Garner Wheels and Deals as "Cash McCall"

Classic Film & TV Cafe Posted by Rick29 on Jun 11, 2017

The title character in Cash McCall does not make an appearance until eighteen minutes into the film. Still, he dominates the opening scenes. Little girls sing about him as they jump rope. Business executives describe him as a "jackal," a ruthless corporate raider. We hear about his nine-room pe read more

The Houses of Frankenstein and Dracula

Classic Film & TV Cafe Posted by Rick29 on Jun 8, 2017

The trailer promised a lot! House of Frankenstein (1944). The inevitable follow-up to Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (1942) adds Count Dracula, a mad scientist, and a lovesick, hunchbacked assistant to the mix. The result is a somewhat clunky affair that still has its minor pleasures. Boris Karlo read more

Shakespeare in Virginia

Classic Film & TV Cafe Posted by Rick29 on Jun 5, 2017

What’s the connection between Judi Dench and a Shakespearean theater nestled in the scenic Shenandoah Valley in Virginia? The interior of Blackfriars Playhouse; photo by Lauren D. Rogers. The answer is that Dame Judi and her late husband, British actor Michael Williams, helped establish th read more

In Memory of Roger Moore: The King's Thief

Classic Film & TV Cafe Posted by Rick29 on Jun 1, 2017

Roger Moore in The King's Thief. Roger Moore signed a seven-year contract with MGM in 1954 at the age of 27. Although he had studied at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts, Moore didn't consider himself a very good actor. But the truth is that he had already developed the on-screen charisma that wou read more

The Movie-TV Connection Game (May 2017)

Classic Film & TV Cafe Posted by Rick29 on May 29, 2017

What do Bill and George have in common? The rules are simple: Given a pair or trio of films or performers, your task is to find the common connection. It could be anything--two stars who acted in the same movie, two movies that share a common theme, etc. As always, don't answer all the questio read more

Hemingway's Adventures of a Young Man

Classic Film & TV Cafe Posted by Rick29 on May 25, 2017

Ernest Hemingway wrote two dozen stories about his alter ego, Nick Adams, throughout his literary career. Playwright and novelist A.E. Hotchner, a Hemingway friend who later penned the biography Papa Hemingway, combined several of the Nick Adams stories into the 1962 film Adventures of a Young Man. read more

The African Queen Rides Into Adventure with Bogart and Hepburn

Classic Film & TV Cafe Posted by Cafe Guest Blogger on May 22, 2017

Guest blogger Chris Cummins from MovieFanFare pays tribute to a Bogey-Hepburn classic: Released on December 23, 1951, The African Queen (based on the C.S. Forester novel of the same name) is a cinematic masterpiece that is highlighted by unforgettable lead performances from Humphrey Bogart and Kath read more

Five Star Blogathon: Cary Grant Tops My List of Favorite Stars

Classic Film & TV Cafe Posted by toto2 on May 15, 2017

This is my contribution to the Five Star Blogathon in support of National Classic Movie Day. I encourage you to check out all the posts to this wonderful blogathon. When my fellow contributor Rick asked me to write about my five favorite film stars, I came up with four of them quickly. It was a chal read more

When Sherlock Holmes Was Young

Classic Film & TV Cafe Posted by Rick29 on May 11, 2017

Nicholas Rowe as a teenage Sherlock. Holmes purists may quibble that Young Sherlock Holmes (1985) is an insult to the classic mysteries of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. After all, Holmes and Watson certainly didn’t meet as schoolboys, as this movie implies. But let those hardcore fans quibble read more

Seven Things to Know About Billy Wilder

Classic Film & TV Cafe Posted by Rick29 on May 8, 2017

Billy Wilder and "friends." 1. Billy Wilder only directed 26 feature-length films and three of those were released in 1957 (The Spirit of St. Louis, Love in the Afternoon, and Witness for the Prosecution). In contrast, Alfred Hitchcock directed over 50 movies. 2. He was one of the first "scri read more

James Garner Makes a Fine Marlowe

Classic Film & TV Cafe Posted by Rick29 on May 4, 2017

Garner as Chandler's detective. Having consumed the Philip Marlowe novels as a teenager, I'm typically hard on the film adaptations of Raymond Chandler's hard-boiled detective. The only one that truly captures Chandler's cynical protagonist and his unflattering portrait of L.A. is Murder, My Sweet. read more

Classic Movies About Horse Racing and Equitation

Classic Film & TV Cafe Posted by Rick29 on May 1, 2017

Mickey Rooney in National Velvet. With the Kentucky Derby just around the corner, we thought it was a perfect time to reprint this entry on classic horse racing movies from the Encyclopedia of Film Themes, Settings and Series (reprinted with the authors' permission). Since we're talking "classic" m read more

Book Review: Opening Wednesday at a Theater or Drive-In Near You

Classic Film & TV Cafe Posted by Rick29 on Apr 27, 2017

Subtitled The Shadow Cinema of the American '70s, Charles Taylor's new book contains sharply-written essays on fourteen "B" classics from what he calls "the third--and, to date, last--great period in American movies." I'll just say upfront that any book that praises Walter Hill's under-apprecia read more

The Movie-TV Connection Game (April 2017)

Classic Film & TV Cafe Posted by Rick29 on Apr 24, 2017

Patrick & Ray: What's their connection? Along with April showers comes a new edition of one of our most popular features! You will be given a pair or trio of films or performers, your task is to find the common connection. It could be anything--two stars who acted in the same movie, two movies read more

Billy Wilder's The Fortune Cookie

Classic Film & TV Cafe Posted by Rick29 on Apr 20, 2017

Like Alfred Hitchcock, Billy Wilder found his career at the crossroads in the 1960s. Successes such as The Apartment and Irma la Douce were offset by flops like Kiss Me, Stupid and the under-appreciated One, Two, Three. It's almost as if he couldn't quite grasp what appealed to t read more

The Visual Splendor of Walt Disney's Sleeping Beauty

Classic Film & TV Cafe Posted by Rick29 on Apr 17, 2017

When originally released in 1959, Sleeping Beauty was a major critical and financial disappointment for Walt Disney. The film cost a then-hefty $6 million and failed to break even on its original release in the U.S. Critics were unkind, too, calling it ponderous and lacking in memorable ch read more

Working with Steve McQueen on "Le Mans": An Interview with Don Nunley

Classic Film & TV Cafe Posted by Rick29 on Apr 9, 2017

The new book Steve McQueen: Le Mans in the Rearview Mirror, which arrives in stores today, chronicles the making of McQueen's 1971 cult classic about the famous international endurance race. It was written by Don Nunley, who worked as the film's property master, and Marshall Terrill, who has wr read more
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