USA

John Douglas & Robert Kramer – Milestones (1975)

Quote:
This epic film represents an essential landmark within the political, intellectual and artistic entreprise of the 60’s and 70’s, following the Vietnam War. Milestones cuts back and forth between different story lines and features over fifty different characters, from Vietnam veterans to ex-convicts, parents and kids, native americans…. In 3 hours and 15 minutes, Kramer and Douglas expose the ‘tribe’ where all the alternatives of this generation are experimented. The film questions these experimentations’s success and failures, as well as the directing methods of Newsreel cinema. In 1976, Serge Toubiana wrote in Les Cahiers du Cinema: “If in Milestones one deals with new relationships between human beings and with a new way of life which also integrates the vegetal world as well as the biological world, one also deals primarly with cinema, with a new form of cinema, as if Hollywood would not exist. Kramer and Douglas don’t make Milestones against Hollywood, they shoot as if Hollywood doesn’t exist.” Read More »

Edward Dmytryk – Warlock (1959)

Synopsis:
In the small frontier mining town of Warlock, rancher Abe McQuown’s gang of cowboy cutthroats terrorize the peaceful community, humiliating the town’s legitimate deputy Sheriff and running him out of town. Helpless and in need of protection, the townsfolk hire the renowned town tamer Clay Blaisdell, as unofficial Marshal, to bring law and order to the town. Clay arrives with his good friend and backup Tom Morgan. The two men stand up to the ranch gang and quiet the town. Johnny Gannon, a former member of the ranch gang is bothered by the gang’s actions, reforms and takes on the deputy Sherrif job while his brother remains part of the gang. The addition of the official lawman to the mix further complicate matters, leading to an inevitable clash of the cowboys, the townsfolk, the gunslingers and the law. Read More »

John M. Stahl – The Walls of Jericho (1948)

After County Attorney Dave Connors helps Julian Norman with her shiftless father, Jefferson Norman, she leaves Jericho, Kansas to college to study for a law degree.A few years later, Algeria Wedge, the new bride of Dave’s best friend, Tucker Wedge, makes overtures and plays for Dave, much to the displeasure of Dave’s hard-drinking wife Belle. Angered by Dave’s rebuffs, Algeria induces the state political boss to back Tucker for a Congress race against Dave. Meanwhile, Julia has returned to Jericho, with her law degree, and she and Dave fall in love. Read More »

Charles Barton – The Noose Hangs High (1948)

For their first independently-produced vehicle, Bud Abbott and Lou Costello chose to appear in a remake of the 1939 Universal programmer For Love or Money. Bud and Lou are cast as Ted and Tommy, two bumbling window washers hired by gangster Mike Craig (Joseph Calleila) to collect a $50,000 gambling debt. The boys manage to pick up the money, only to deliver it to the wrong person, a pretty private secretary named Carol (Cathy Downs). Ordered to retrieve the money within 24 hours “or else,” Ted and Tommy trace the cash to Carol, who has mistakenly distributed it amongst the entries in a mailing list. Read More »

Roger Corman – X AKA X: The Man with the X-Ray Eyes (1963)

Quote:
A doctor uses special eye drops to give himself x-ray vision, but the new power has disastrous consequences. Read More »

Mervyn LeRoy – Any Number Can Play (1949)

Synopsis:
In this light drama, Clark Gable once again played his stock-in-trade role of a rogue with a heart of gold. Charlie King (Gable) runs a casino, but, in a business that thrives among the unscrupulous, Charlie takes pride in running an honest game and treating his customers with fairness and respect. However, Charlie’s wife Lon (Alexis Smith) doesn’t care if he runs a fair game — she regards gambling as a dirty and corrupt business, and no matter how honest Charlie may be, he’s still involved in a wicked activity. Charlie’s son Paul (Darryl Hickman) is also against him; when Paul gets in trouble and Charlie bails him out of jail, he refuses to leave with him, instead going home with mother. Charlie invites Paul to see what his casino is like, and Lon agrees that Paul should know just what his father does.
— Mark Deming. Read More »

Richard Sale – Let’s Make It Legal (1951)

Synopsis:
The divorce of Hugh and Miriam Halsworth becomes final at midnight. Hugh wouldn’t dream of calling it off, but can’t abandon his rose garden. Things change that afternoon, though, when Miriam’s old suitor Victor Macfarland checks into the hotel where Hugh is publicity man. With Miriam’s daughter Barbara rooting for Hugh and son-in-law Jerry rooting for Victor, things are unlikely to be resolved by midnight… Read More »