Alfred Hitchcock – North by Northwest (1959)

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NORTH BY NORTHWEST
Since he is a peripatetic operative who loves to beat about the bush while beating about the countryside, director Alfred Hitchcock and a covey of willing and able traveling companions have made North by Northwest, which was unveiled at the Music Hall yesterday, a suspenseful and delightful Cook’s Tour of some of the more photogenic spots in these United States.

Although they are involved in lightning-fast romance and some loose intrigue, it is all done in brisk, genuinely witty, and sophisticated style. With Mr. Hitchcock at the helm, moving North by Northwest is a colorful and exciting route for spies, counterspies, and lovers. Continue reading

Alfred Hitchcock – Strangers on a Train (1951)

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‘Strangers on a Train,’ Another Hitchcock Venture, Arrives at the Warner Theatre
It appears that Alfred Hitchcock is fascinated with the Svengali theme, as well as with his own dexterity in performing macabre tricks. His last picture, “Rope,” will be remembered as a stunt (which didn’t succeed) involving a psychopathic murderer who induced another young man to kill for thrills. Now, in his latest effort, called “Strangers on a Train,” which served to reopen the Strand Theatre last night under its new name, the Warner, Mr. Hitchcock again is tossing a crazy murder story in the air and trying to con us into thinking that it will stand up without support. Continue reading

Alfred Hitchcock – To Catch A Thief (1955)

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Synopsis:
A series of ingenious jewelry robberies takes place on the French Riviera. The police suspect John Robbie – an expert thief who was known as “The Cat” before he retired from crime. Robbie enlists the help of an insurance man to guess where the real thief will strike next. He befriends wealthy widow Jessie Stevens and her attractive daughter Frances. Continue reading

Nikola Tanhofer – H-8 (1958)

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Quote:
A bus and a truck are moving towards each other along a two-way traffic highway on a rainy day. At the very beginning we learn that a reckless driver of another car will cause them to collide while trying to pass the bus; we even learn what seats will spell doom for their occupants. The rest of the movie follows two streams of events on the bus and on the truck, getting us to know and like a wide variety of characters, wondering which ones will end up being casualties and holding breath for our favourites. The epilogue brings some more surprises… Continue reading

Various – Boris Karloff’s Thriller [Season 1] (1960)

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Thriller (aka. Boris Karloff’s Thriller) was an hour-long TV Horror anthology series that originally aired on NBC from 1960 to 1962. Horror fans who grew up in the 1960’s and 1970’s were nearly enraptured with the content and structure of this show. Indeed, in his non-fiction book on horror, Danse Macabre, Stephen King calls Thriller “the best horror series ever put on TV” (224; 1983 ed). At the beginning of each hour, Hollywood’s master of the macabre himself, Boris Karloff, would set the tone and prime the viewers for frightful and chilling dramatizations based on the works of some of the era’s greatest writers in the genre – writers like Robert E Howard, Cornell Woolrich, Richard Matheson, and Robert Bloch. Each episode was shot in eerie black and white and offered at least one story, with a few episodes dividing the hour between two or three shorter plays. Continue reading

Ken Annakin – Third Man on the Mountain (1959)

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Quote:
A young man in 19th century Switzerland whose father was killed trying to climb the Citadel (which is what the Matterhorn is called here) wants to become a mountaineer himself, and of course climb to the top of the Citadel, which no man has done. His mother strictly forbids it, and his uncle downright nasty to him whenever the subject comes up. Persistent fellow that he is, the boy hooks up with an English mountain climber, then coaxes his uncle to take him along on a climb, makes an ass of himself, then has a go at it again. The boy doesn’t really have the maturity for the task, but persists, and in time he grows up, almost in spite of himself. Continue reading

Lamberto V. Avellana – Badjao AKA Badjao, the Sea Gypsies (1957)

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Plot:
An classic film by film studio LVN, largely because of shining performances by Rosa Rosal and Tony Santos. It won the award for best direction (Lamberto V. Avellana, National Artist for Theater and Film in 1976), best story (Rolf Bayer), best editing (Gregorio Carballo), and best cinematography (Mike Accion) at the 1957 Southeast Asia Film Festival held in Tokyo.
A story about the Badjaos and the Tausogs, rival tribes for centuries. The Badjaos, a group of sea gypsies, ply the sea for food and for pearls.
Hassan (Tony Santos), a son of the Badjao chief falls in love and marries Bala Amai (Rosa Rosal) who is a niece of Datu Tahil (Jose de Cordova), head of the land-dwelling Tausogs. At the urging of Bala Amai, Hassan decides to leave his tribe and join the Tausogs.
Eventually, Datu Tahil learns of Hassan’s expertise in finding rare pearls in the sea, thus exploiting him for his own selfish interests. Hassan and Bala Amai resist him, feeling that their self-respect have been trampled on. They decide to go back to the Badjaos and lead a more humble, but nevertheless peaceful life. the Badjaos accept them with all their hearts. Continue reading