Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Just a note.

The press screenings for Bill Brand at Anthology were cancelled yesterday, spent the day at home watching a bunch of movies starring Robert Young, of which "The Longest Night" was the most amazing. Ha! "The Longest Night": reputedly the shortest feature film ever released by MGM (it's only 51 minutes). It's from 1936, a lovely little suspense film set in a department store after hours, as everyone is forced to stay when the police arrive to investigate a murder. Nevertheless, "The Longest Night" has the best film performance i've ever seen by Julie Haydon, which indicates what her performance must have been like as Laura in the original production of "The Glass Menagerie". In Dave Kehr's DVD column, he reviews "The Busby Berkeley Collection", "Magic" and "The Ten Commandments"; at the end of his review of the 1956 De Mille opus, Dave notes that Parmount has a great library of titles, like the silent von Sternberg "The Docks of New York" and Von Stroheim's "The Wedding March" ripe for transfer to DVD. One note is that Paramount has announced that Ophuls's "Letter from an Unknown Woman" will be coming out on DVD; this was a film produced by John Houseman in association with William Dozier and his then-wife Joan Fontaine, which was released through Universal. But Universal and Paramount (as individual labels) are actually all part of the MCA megalith, which is how so many Paramount films (such as "This Gun for Hire" and "The Big Clock") wound up being released on DVD under the Universal label. Finally watched the DVD of "House on Telegraph Hill" and loved it. It's an example of how a contemporary "issue" (in this case: the problem of "displaced" people after World War II and the relocation of concentration camp survivors) can serve as the basis for a genre story. Have screenings coming up but also want to write. Not just blogging, but actually finish an article.


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