Paul Henreid

Paul Henreid

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Deception (1946) Review


Weak
Three big stars (or rather, two big stars and Paul Henreid) can't overact their way out of this mess, a noirish tale about musicians and egomania that's long on talk and short on substance. Deception does prove one thing, though: Even the "classics" aren't always all that classic.

Exorcist II: The Heretic Review


Terrible
Er, what's that? You didn't understand the intricacies of Exorcist II: The Heretic? What an idiot you are! You've got Linda Blair as a teenager, under hypnosis for most of the movie. You've got James Earl Jones as an African tribal leader. You've got "the good locusts." And you've got Richard Burton as a priest who opens up the whole can of demons afresh! Total, utter nonsense with a bad dub job. Stick with the original, or the next sequel if you must.

Between Two Worlds Review


OK
This innovative drama earns points for originality, but bungles the execution: A group of British travelers have all been killed during World War II... and they all find themselves on a cruise ship headed... where? The catch: Some know they're dead, and some don't. The film's conflict comes from arguments between these two groups. What could have been a proto-version of The Sixth Sense instead becomes a rather dull bit of preachiness where little ends up happening. The film is based on the play Outward Bound (which will forever taint the name of the organization by the same name for me), which was a flop on Broadway.

Now, Voyager Review


Good
It's saying something that despite having Bette Davis in the leading role, three Oscar nominations, and one win, Now, Voyager is nonetheless best known for a single scene in which Paul Henreid lights two cigarettes and hands one to Davis.

Just don't blink or you'll miss it. This 1948 meditation on spinsterism is a kind of precursor to Good Will Hunting, giving us an antisocial shut-in (Davis) who suddenly blossoms after a quick spin on the therapist's (Claude Rains) couch. Off come the glasses, up goes the hair (way up -- that coif gives me nightmares now!), and away goes our Charlotte on a pleasure cruise. So comfortable with her new self, Charlotte promptly woos a married man (Paul Henreid) on the boat, falling in love with him.

Continue reading: Now, Voyager Review

Deception Review


Weak
Three big stars (or rather, two big stars and Paul Henreid) can't overact their way out of this mess, a noirish tale about musicians and egomania that's long on talk and short on substance. Deception does prove one thing, though: Even the "classics" aren't always all that classic.

Exorcist II: The Heretic Review


Terrible
Er, what's that? You didn't understand the intricacies of Exorcist II: The Heretic? What an idiot you are! You've got Linda Blair as a teenager, under hypnosis for most of the movie. You've got James Earl Jones as an African tribal leader. You've got "the good locusts." And you've got Richard Burton as a priest who opens up the whole can of demons afresh! Total, utter nonsense with a bad dub job. Stick with the original, or the next sequel if you must.

Casablanca Review


Essential
"Play it again, Sam." Well, those lines aren't in Casablanca, but the words "Bogie and Bergman" rank just below "Bogie and Bacall" when it comes to famous celebrity film pairings. Sometimes a kiss isn't just a kiss -- in this case, it's forever. And it was certainly the beginning of a beautiful friendship...

A new double-disc DVD of Casablanca enhances the film for novelists and cineastes alike. I rarely do this, but I listened to Roger Ebert's entire commentary track, which he uses to discuss the film's curious shortcomings (what good would letters of transit signed by Charles de Gaulle be in getting you out of Morocco?), Bogart's past and rise to fame (this being his first starring role), Bergman and her foibles, endless points about the film's dozen or so famous lines, and extended commentary on the lighting, special effects (if you can call them that), and camerawork.

Continue reading: Casablanca Review

Goodbye, Mr. Chips Review


Good
Mr. Chipping (Robert Donat) is on his way out as professor and headmaster at a proper British boys' school, and the aging man looks back on his life. Goodbye, Mr. Chips provides a comprehensive look at one teacher's life and love -- from the disciplining of his students to the chance meeting of the love of his life on a mountaintop. (Played by Greer Garson with about 20 minutes of screen time, I have no idea how her awkward debut here earned an Oscar nomination for Best Actress.)

Everybody loves Chipping to death, which is what makes this and its contemporaries (like Mr. Holland's Opus) such harmless works of cinema. Chipping's challenges are so meaningless that he all but waltzes through life. There's less conflict than in your typical animated Disney movie, and that makes watching Chips an often tedious experience. Even when asked to retire by a younger headmaster, he merely brushes it off like dust from his lapels. Sure, there's some teary eyes when he eulogizes a student that dies during WWII, but Chipping himself lives to a ripe old age with little more than a cold to keep him down.

Continue reading: Goodbye, Mr. Chips Review

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Paul Henreid Movies

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Casablanca Movie Review

Casablanca Movie Review

"Play it again, Sam." Well, those lines aren't in Casablanca, but the words "Bogie and...

Goodbye, Mr. Chips Movie Review

Goodbye, Mr. Chips Movie Review

Mr. Chipping (Robert Donat) is on his way out as professor and headmaster at a...

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