Favorite films

  • The Day the Earth Stood Still
  • The Narrow Margin
  • Trouble in Paradise
  • Steamboat Bill, Jr.

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  • Saboteur

    ★★★★

  • Hands Up!

    ★★★½

  • Footsteps in the Dark

    ★★★½

  • Edgar Allan Poe

    ★★★

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  • Saboteur

    Saboteur

    ★★★★

    This wartime thriller stars Robert Cummings as an aircraft factory worker who is accused of sabotage and murder. The real saboteur, Norman Lloyd, is working for a group of wealthy Nazi sympathizers. Cummings pursues Lloyd across the country and exposes the traitors. Continuing to pursue Lloyd, Cummings confronts him on the Statue of Liberty.

    Not the finest Alfred Hitchcock film, but fun nevertheless. The ending with Lloyd hanging off the Statue of Liberty as Cummings tries to pull him back is one of Hitchcock’s best known images. The camera looks down at Lloyd as he loses his grip and falls into the yawning space below.

  • Hands Up!

    Hands Up!

    ★★★½

    Raymond Griffith, pleasant and athletic, was a popular comedian in the 1920s, but little known today. This comedy, set during the Civil War, showcases his talents. Traveling to the west in an attempt to seize gold for the Confederacy, Griffith has a series of comic battles with Indians, bandits, and Union soldiers. Griffith’s superior wits and athletic skills overcome all opposition. He meets and romances sisters Marion Nixon and Virginia Lee Corbin. By the time Griffith reaches the West, the…

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  • Outrage

    Outrage

    Ida Lupino was a marvelous actress, but perhaps even a better director. She might have been given more resources nowadays, but even with low budgets and relatively minor stars, she made extremely powerful films. This may be the best, a gritty, extremely modern tale about the rape of a young, pretty woman in a small town and the failure of society to in any way to prevent the rape or help her deal with it. The police want to catch…

  • Carnival in Flanders

    Carnival in Flanders

    ★★★★★

    Carnival in Flanders (La Kermesse heroique, 1936) is unusual in many ways. How many films dealing with the occupation of a city by elements of an invading army are comedies? How many movies have ever been set in Seventeenth Century Flanders? Where the heck is Flanders? (For those not knowing the answer to the last question, Flanders is the Dutch-speaking northern portion of today’s Belgium.)

    The year is 1616 and Spain has invaded and occupied the Low Countries. A courier…