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2021 Viewing (Q3)

Yes, it’s that time—the year’s third-quarter viewings—Q2 can be viewed here.

Alfred Hitchcock Presents season 6 (DVD)
Wanted Dead Or Alive seasons 1-2 (DVD)
Have Gun Will Travel season 3 (DVD)
Orson Welles Great Mysteries season 1 (DVD)
The Phil Silvers Show seasons 1-2 (DVD)
Flash Gordon 1936 serial (DVD)

I hate to say it, because it’s a fantastic show, but we still haven’t quite got through Naked City season 2!! I guess it’ll be quite a while before we get to the season 4 episode “Hold For Gloria Christmas”, starring Burgess Meredith—which features a legit contemporaneous newsstand displaying a certain Amazing Fantasy #15… the geek side of me does look forward to that.

However, almost done with Star Trek: The Original Series season 3, and close to finished with Hitchcock Presents season 7, while working through Have Gun season 4 and Wanted season 3. Also, just started the second of the three classic Flash Gordon serials (“Trip to Mars”).

The mention of Wanted reminds me that in Q2 we did watch a great movie with that show’s star, Steve McQueen, which I forgot to mention—namely, Don Siegel’s 1962 war film Hell Is for Heroes. As you’d expect from Siegel, it’s very well done, and for its era about as gritty as you could hope. The cast is great, including, along with McQueen—the likes of Johnny Yuma himself, Nick Adams, James Coburn and Fess Parker.

Hell Is For Heroes Adams McQueen
Nicholas Adamshock and Terrence McQueen in HELL IS FOR HEROES (1962).

What could’ve been stunt casting for Bobby Darin and Bob Newhart (in his first movie appearance) fortumately comes off just fine. Darin in particular is very good, while Newhart does have a gimmicky scene that plays on his famous comedy monologues, but in context it works OK. Don’t recall ever seeing this movie before, but it comes highly recommended.

The movies watched in Q3 included the usual film noir selections. Not least was Lewis Milestone’s The Strange Love of Martha Ivers (1946), showcasing a typically strong lead performance from Barbara Stanwyck, and the screen debut of Kirk Douglas. Unusual film—kind of a gothic noir in many ways—but very good stuff.

Martha Ivers Stanwyck Douglas
Issur Danielovitch and Ruby Stevens in THE STRANGE LOVE OF MARTHA IVERS (1946).

More early Burt Lancaster fun was had with 1949’s Criss Cross, directed by Robert Siodmak, and co-starring Yvonne De Carlo and the legendary Dan Duryea. With a line-up like that you might expect a classic… and it is great stuff, but somehow I expected a bit more. Not sure why?

Mr Duryea takes the lead in the next noir watch, 1946’s Black Angel. This was director Roy William Neill’s final film (he died just after making it)—he is best-known perhaps for directing the Universal Horror classic Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (1943), and 11 of the 14 Basil Rathbone Sherlock Holmes movies. Duryea is supported by June Vincent, Peter Lorre and Broderick Crawford, and for once in his noir days plays a somewhat sympathetic figure.

Black Angel Vincent Duryea
Dorothy Smith and… yeah, it really is Dan Duryea, in BLACK ANGEL (1946).

Into cult territory, rewatches of two old AIP flicks—Roger Corman’s A Bucket of Blood (1959; Dick Miller’s first appearance as Walter Paisley!!), and Francis Ford Coppola’s debut, Dementia 13 (1963).

As a token “new” movie, we finally caught up with Fast & Furious: Hobbs & Shaw (2019). Well, it sure beats watching recent Disney/MCU junk! And the team of The Rock and The Stath is an enjoyable combo. Mindless fun.

More soon… if I forgot anything, I’ll post about it!

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