Olivia De Havilland

Olivia De Havilland

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The Charge Of The Light Brigade Review


OK
Dramatazation of Alfred Lord Tennyson's poem about the ill-fated Light Brigade, 600 soldiers during the Crimean War (digested version: 1854-56, England and Turkey vs. Russia, best known for the Light Brigade but most significant for the actions of nurse Florence Nightengale). While the costumes and sets are perfectly historical, the facts are hardly accurate -- the infamous charge that killed all involved was actually a goof-up courtesy of an incompetent British army, not a moment of heroism due to a Ben Affleck-ish soldier.

Continue reading: The Charge Of The Light Brigade Review

Captain Blood Review


Very Good
One of Errol Flynn's first big roles, Captain Blood gives us Flynn at his classic best, as a dashing nobleman turned slave turned pirate turned nobleman -- heck, Blood's got everything!

The story is born from the classic Sabatini novel. In the opening scenes, set in the 17th century, Dr. Blood (Flynn) is pronounced guilty of treason -- for healing an enemy of the king of England. He's shipped off to an island colony as a slave, where the lovely Arabella Bishop (Olivia de Havilland, in her first of many collaborations with Flynn) purchases him. Ultimately he escapes the island, becomes a pirate captain, and turns the tables on everyone by rescuing the kidnapped Bishop and saving his former enemy by routing the French, who are now at war with the Brits.

Continue reading: Captain Blood Review

The Charge Of The Light Brigade Review


OK
Dramatazation of Alfred Lord Tennyson's poem about the ill-fated Light Brigade, 600 soldiers during the Crimean War (digested version: 1854-56, England and Turkey vs. Russia, best known for the Light Brigade but most significant for the actions of nurse Florence Nightengale). While the costumes and sets are perfectly historical, the facts are hardly accurate -- the infamous charge that killed all involved was actually a goof-up courtesy of an incompetent British army, not a moment of heroism due to a Ben Affleck-ish soldier.

Continue reading: The Charge Of The Light Brigade Review

They Died With Their Boots On Review


Good
In case the title is ambiguous, they died because George Custer was their general, and we all know about his Last Stand, etc. etc.

Errol Flynn takes one of his most curious roles ever in this big-budget western, playing the ill-fated general from West Point through the Civil War through his inglorious career killing off Indians before they got their payback at Little Big Horn. Custer is here portrayed as a hero but also an extremely impetuous one: Ranking at the bottom of his class in academics and willfully violating orders whenever they're given to him.

Continue reading: They Died With Their Boots On Review

Hush... Hush, Sweet Charlotte Review


Good
As moviegoers were recovering from the shock of watching twin gorgons Bette Davis and Joan Crawford claw their way through the unforgettable Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?, producer/director Robert Aldrich was already planning to capture lightning in a bottle twice by coming up with another vehicle for the gruesome twosome. In the end, Crawford wouldn't commit (no big surprise, given the way Davis upstaged her), so Aldrich ran through a roll call of aging leading ladies, none of whom had the desire -- or the guts -- to appear opposite Davis in his follow-up, the delightfully named Hush... Hush, Sweet Charlotte.

Luckily, Olivia de Havilland eventually signed on, and the film, a campy Southern gothic thriller that scares and amuses in equal parts, finally got made. Davis stars as Charlotte Hollis, a decrepit and slightly insane Southern lady who 30 years earlier murdered her boyfriend John Mayhew (Bruce Dern)... maybe. The weapon? An axe, what else?

Continue reading: Hush... Hush, Sweet Charlotte Review

The Adventures Of Robin Hood Review


Excellent
The Adventures of Robin Hood is one of those rare studio system movies that started out as a regular genre film and somehow surpassed itself, feeding off a creative energy that generated its own sweeping artistry. It blurs the line of categories to include all types and styles: a swashbuckling action-adventure; a romantic fairy tale full of yearning looks and limpid eyes; a sight-gag comedy with dashing derring-do and hilarious costumes. Coming right down to it though, it's a 65-year-old classic that still holds its rank as a movie among movies.

In 1938 Robin Hood was a huge success. It added to the Errol Flynn-Olivia de Havilland aura as a leading romantic team (they made six more films together). It also received special attention by using the new and expensive three-strip Technicolor in its cinematography. If you had a chance to see the restored 35mm print that made the rounds at various big-city theaters last August, good for you -- you've experienced what "glorious Technicolor" really is and you're one up on the rest of us. But the new release of The Adventures of Robin Hood on a two-disc DVD special edition might just even the score. It's hard to beat seeing any classic on the big screen, but the sparkling sharpness of this DVD image and the high quality and quantity of the extras almost make up for the lack of big-screen opportunities.

Continue reading: The Adventures Of Robin Hood Review

Olivia De Havilland

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Olivia de Havilland Movies

Hush... Hush, Sweet Charlotte Movie Review

Hush... Hush, Sweet Charlotte Movie Review

As moviegoers were recovering from the shock of watching twin gorgons Bette Davis and Joan...

The Adventures of Robin Hood Movie Review

The Adventures of Robin Hood Movie Review

The Adventures of Robin Hood is one of those rare studio system movies that started...

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