Skimpy. I know. I have seen twenty-one films this year including “Dangerous” “The Flame Within” “Ruggles of Red Gap” “Mutiny on the Bounty” “Magnificent Obession” etc.etc. But these are the four I can watch repeatedly.
( Garbo in “Anna Karenina” – The girl can’t catch a break )
CAPTAIN BLOOD – ( Michael Curtiz )
What’s more adventuresome than watching pirates. ( Well, being one, but who’s going to be a pirate in this day and age? ) And who should so dashingly swing from the yardarm into our hearts but this new Tasmanian kid on the block, Errol Flynn. I’ve not seen a movie star more beautiful. Pairing him with the willing and unwilling ( but you know she’s putting up a good front ) willing damsel is Olivia deHavilland, just as lovely as she could be. Flynn and deHavilland would make many more films together, ending their film association with their romantic turn in “They Died With their Boots On.” But this here “Captain Blood” is the first. You can keep “Mutiny on the Bounty.” I’ll take “Captain Blood.”
CHINA SEAS – ( Tay Garnett )
Gable, AGAIN, is caught between liking the high-toned gal ( this time Rosalind Russell ) and denying he really likes to get down to brass tacks ( again with the blinding Harlow ) in this rolling on the river version of “Grand Hotel.” Tay Garnett certainly knows how to create another world as we sail along the China seas with…who am I kidding. It’s Gable in a white sailor suit. << SIgh ! >>
THE RAVEN – ( Lew Landers )
Sick and twisted. I can’t think of a better combination for horror film success. Lugosi is a doctor obsessed with Poe and is looking for his own “Lenore.” When he has to operate on a young dancer he falls hopelessly obsessed with her. His house is set up with all manners of torturous devices and he’ll use them on anyone who gets in his way…including the dancer’s father and fiancee. Karloff’s in this too, jacked up by a Lugosi during surgery where to be disfigured is to be in order to be in control. The highlight for me in this movie? As Lugosi has my beloved Samuel S. Hinds clamped down, a swinging knife coming closer and closer, Lugosi gleefully proclaims…
“I like to torture!”
Yeeeikes! I have NO idea what that says about me.
SHE – ( Lansing C. Holden / Irving Pichel )
I liked this adventure. We come upon a Queen who lives forever. But what she wants, what she really really wants…is love. Helen Gahagan as She, and Randolph Scott is the man she loves.
“I am yesterday, and today, and tomorrow. I am sorrow, and longing, and hope unfulfilled. I am Hash-A-Mo-Tep. She. She who must be obeyed! I am I.”
Forgive my stream-of-consciousness, but I’m going to go totally modern but appropriately poignant…I give you, Queen:
( H O M E )