Skip to content

2021 Viewing (Q4)

Finally—2021’s fourth-quarter viewings… Q3 can be viewed here.

Alfred Hitchcock Presents season 7 (DVD)
Wanted Dead Or Alive season 3 (DVD)
Have Gun Will Travel season 4 (DVD)
Star Trek: The Original Series season 3 (Blu-ray)
Naked City season 2 (DVD)
The Phil Silvers Show season 3 (DVD)
Flash Gordon’s Trip to Mars 1938 serial (DVD)
Flash Gordon Conquers the Universe 1940 serial (DVD)
King of the Rocket Men 1949 serial (DVD)
Batman 1943 serial (DVD)
Superman 1948 serial (DVD)
Hancock/Hancock’s Half Hour various of the surviving episodes (DVD)

It was great to complete season 2 of Naked City—not sure why it took so long. Working through season 3 right now. Also watching more serials—Atom Man vs Superman (1950) and Batman and Robin (1949).

Adding to the Burt Lancaster viewings, more recently we watched Birdman of Alcatraz (1962) and The Kentuckian (1955)—the latter being the only movie Burt fully directed (he did direct parts of several others). Maybe another Burt post will be coming soon…

A notable film watched during the latter part of 2021 was The Fighting Kentuckian (1949) (speaking of Kentuckians!)—the only film teaming John Wayne with Oliver Hardy!

Fighting Kentuckian 1949
John Wayne with one-time sidekick Oliver Hardy, in THE FIGHTING KENTUCKIAN (1949).

Directed by George Waggner (he of the 1941 classic The Wolf Man), this Republic western is just fine, but distinguished largely by Ollie’s excellent presence, not just in the handful of comedic set pieces, with Wayne being his Stan stand-in, but especially in the more dramatic moments where he proves, as has been so often said, that he was a great actor.

I honestly wish he had done more work like this… as much as I want to see him with Stan. The year after this, the duo went to France to make Atoll K—and it was a disaster, of course. Stan was clearly not quite recovered from his diabetic issues of 1948-49 to begin with, becoming gravely ill during the shoot, which dragged on for almost a year (!!). A heat wave, too, caused Babe to develop heart problems. So… maybe if they’d skipped that film offer, Babe could’ve made a couple more movies with Wayne, then he & Stan might have done something better a little later on. What might have been, etc…

Other movies watched include Hour of the Gun (1968), Dark Eyes of London (1939), Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia (1974), House of Wax (1953), Vertigo (1958), and certainly not leastly, the timeless, immortal classic High Noon (1952). You gotta love a bit of Coop. This time, the token modern movie was 2013’s Nebraska, with superlative performances from those durable old farts Bruce Dern and Stacy Keach. Highly recommended if you missed it—not a grain of crappy CGI in sight.

Recently, too, a few Ray Harryhausen movies have been seen… but I want to do a post just about Ray shortly.

PS. Yeah, I am going to finish writing up the Laurel & Hardy: The Definitive Restorations, too. Still have Way Out West to watch, to finish the set.

2 thoughts on “2021 Viewing (Q4)”

  1. I love Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia. I think my favourite House of Wax is the Michael Curtiz version. What were the serials Batman and Robin and Atom Man vs Superman like? Outside of the Buster Crabbe Flash Gordons, I think the best serials were Spy Smasher and Captain Marvel, but then I haven’t seen a huge load.

    1. Directors seemed less pigeonholed in the 1930s/40s: Curtiz could shift from horror (Doctor X, The Mystery of the Wax Museum) through action-adventure (The Adventures of Robin Hood, The Sea Hawk) into thrillers (Casablanca, Passage to Marseille) and even musicals (White Christmas, King Creole), because the studio system didn’t lock him into a single genre.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.