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Suddenly Review


Very Good
An interesting, almost experimental little film for 1954. Clocking in at 75 brisk minutes, it's also quite prescient: A man (Frank Sinatra) holes up in a suburban home, taking the family living there hostage for an hour or so. Why? He's going to assassinate the president, whose train will be pulling up at 5 o'clock, right across the street. Sinatra shelved the film after his friend JFK was assassinated many years later. It's now resurfaced to be experienced anew. It's not great filmmaking, but the way a major assassination like this is almost shruggingly planned and executed is quite interesting. The same film made today would involve three car chases, helicopters, and the house blowing up. Suddenly portrays a killing as something that you almost don't bother thinking about before it's done. Fascinating.

The Bishop's Wife Review


OK
The troubles that underlied this production show in the end, with a quirky and vaguely unsatisfying tale of a bishop (David Niven, not very compelling) who receives a guardian angel (Cary Grant, not very angelic) to help him sort out his life, Wonderful Life style. Still, nostalgia for the prior year's feel-goodie probably propelled Bishop's Wife to five Oscar nominations (it won for best sound), though its feel-good sentiment ends up drowning the film in saccharine.

The Night Of The Hunter Review


Extraordinary
Until I saw The Night of the Hunter, it had been a long time since I had gasped while watching a movie. Forget The Others and The Deep End (which veered toward strained dramatics), The Night of the Hunter is by far the scariest movie I've seen so far this year. Even though the movie is nearly 50 years old and there's a not drop of blood to be seen.

Luckily, The Night of the Hunter, Charles Laughton's first and final directing gig, has been restored by the UCLA Film and Television Archive and is being re-released in October 2001. So, there's still plenty of time to spill your popcorn all over the place.

Continue reading: The Night Of The Hunter Review

The Broadway Melody Review


Good
Hollywood still manages to regurgitate The Broadway Melody every year. The story is timeless and, when they make it today, painfully simple.

Two sisters (Anita Page and Bessie Love) are vaudeville performers trying to break into Broadway -- and when they get their chance, love gets in the way. Soon enough a love quadrangle has formed, as class struggles and a variety of misunderstandings rear their heads.

Continue reading: The Broadway Melody Review

James Gleason

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The Night of the Hunter Movie Review

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Until I saw The Night of the Hunter, it had been a long time since...

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