Anthony Asquith – French Without Tears (1940)

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IMDB review:
This amiable Ratigan Farce is based on Ratigans’ own experiences in a French tuition school in Normandy.It was brought to the stage in London featuring Rex Harrison,Trevor Howard,Kay Hammond and Roland Culver.It was purchased by Paramount initially as a vehicle for Marlene Dietrich!However they decided that the featured actors,Culver apart,were not sufficient box office and replaced them.Whilst Ray Milland is quite enjoyable as the main lead one can only conjecture what the film could have been if Harrison had reprised his role for the screen.I saw the original 86 minute version at the Museum of London in 1983.I have just seen the American version which is some 20 minutes shorter.I cannot remember what is missing.A number of matters of interest.Mantovanni is featured in the party scene.The release of this film coincided with the outbreak of war,when all places of entertainment were closed.The director was “Puffin”Asquith,the son of the World war 1 PM.His mother used her influence with cabinet Ministers to get the cinemas reopened,according to the biography of David Lean.Lean was the editor on this film.Cinemas reopened 3 days later and the film was a success at the box office. Continue reading

Steve Connelly – Americana (1992)

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Imdb
User Review

Fat, Dumb and Rich
23 May 2007 | by mar9 (Newcastle, Australia)

The three nouns above were the episode titles for this 3-part documentary about the USA. “Fat” is naturally about food, and it’s no surprise to find that the portions from the perspective of an austere Englishman are mind-bogglingly huge. As are the people who eat them. “Dumb” is basically a road trip through the some of the stranger sights the US has to offer, and the stranger people who populate them. “Rich” is an exploration of the US lifestyle for those fortunate enough to be able to afford it, and the answer is that it’s pretty fine. Jonathan Ross is the perfect presenter for this show that proves that it is impossible to exaggerate the weirdness that is life in America. He gives his subjects free rein to be as mad as they obviously are, and participates wholeheartedly. Part 1 in particular is a good companion piece to “Supersize Me” and the other episodes are somewhat reminiscent of Michael Moore when he’s not being irritating and invading office foyers and boardrooms. Find “Americana”, watch it. It’s good. Continue reading

Campbell X – Stud Life (2012)

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Stud Life takes the viewer into a slice of life of an urban gay scene where casual sex, and drug taking is not treated as deviant behaviour. Where gender is up for grabs but desire follows very strict rules. Where violence can be part of sex as well as random attacks on the street. JJ and Seb inhabit a world where white queers are familiar with Black street culture and reject the mainstream “G.A.Y” world. This is Stud Life. Continue reading

Ross Sutherland – Stand by for Tape Back-up (2015)

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FROM THE GUARDIAN:

It’s extraordinary how potent cheap videotape is. That’s one of the lessons borne out by Standby for Tape Back-Up, a witty, resourceful and emotionally intense show by the 35-year-old performance poet Ross Sutherland. The stage is bare but for a chair, a TV and a wheezing VCR machine. Looking like a lone Reservoir Dog in his black tie and white shirt, Sutherland paces the stage brandishing a remote control, zipping back and forth through the images projected on the wall behind him. Continue reading

Jonas Mekas – Reminiscences of a Journey to Lithuania (1972)

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After a twenty-seven year absence, Adolfas and his brother Jonas returned to their birthplace in Lithuania. They had left Lithuania as young men, destined for a German labor camp. Now they came home for a visit, Adolfas with his wife, the singer Pola Chapelle.

“The film consists of three parts. The first part is made up of footage I shot with my first Bolex, during my first years in America, mostly from 1950-1953. It shows me and my brother Adolfas, how we looked in those days; miscellaneous footage of immigrants in Brooklyn, picnicking, dancing, singing; the streets of Williamsburg. Continue reading

Thorold Dickinson – The High Command (1938)

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Synopsis:
‘A high-ranking general is stationed in West Africa, but when a new doctor arrives at his post he is forced to face his dark past. The doctor is an old acquaintance and holds a deadly secret about the general, a secret that could destroy him forever. That is until the doctor is found murdered and the sinister world of the general begins to unravel.’
– Optimum Releasing Continue reading