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a bit rushed but not bad., 24 April 2017

In this installment of "The Fugitive", Richard Kimble goes to work for a woman who operates rental cabins. It's the off-season and he's doing maintenance work. In addition to the lady, she has a son...a rather strange boy named Kenny. It's hard to define him, but he shows some signs of possible autism but only because he sees the world in a very unusual way. Kimble is good with the boy...which ends up causing problems later. Later, when Kimble is forced to run, he's shocked to see the boy is following...and that's no life for a kid.

This episode was decent but needed to be longer. The boy became too trusting and too friendly with Kimble too quickly. Had it been drawn out a bit more, it would have seemed more believable. Still, not a bad episode...but one that could have been better.

The convicted murderer witnesses a murder..., 24 April 2017

In a rare departure for Richard Kimble, he's on a train but has lost his wallet. In desperation, he lifts another man's wallet and pays the fare. But Kimble IS essentially an honest man and finds a short- term job to pay for the ticket and then sets out to find Mr. Unger to return the wallet.

In the meantime, you see Unger and his daughter interacting. Roy Unger is a hard man...tough, humorless and never lets his daughter forget she's carrying a crook's baby. Later, when Kimble comes to the Unger home to return the wallet, Roy is gone...but his daughter isn't. She takes the money...and plans on keeping this for herself and using it to leave town and her nasty father.

In the meantime, the baby daddy arrives in town and you learn he's not been around because Roy Unger has paid him not to be there. But instead of $1000, Unger only gives him $500. The baby daddy is angry...and kills Unger! Kimble witnesses this but is powerless to do much because he is a fugitive. What's next? See the show.

Like so many episodes, Richard Kimble puts his freedom at risk in order to help others. An interesting story and one that is well worth your time.

Once more, Girard ALMOST catches up to Kimble..., 24 April 2017

This episode finds Richard Kimble (David Janssen) in Montana*...with Girard (Barry Morse) close behind. Early on in the show, Kimble gets arrested...but it's NOT what you are thinking. Some sort of western themed carnival is taking place in this small town and anyone NOT dressed in western duds is 'arrested'. It's all in fun but Kimble can't let himself be detained for a moment, as he knows Girdard is on his trail and he needs to keep moving. Ironically, the deputy (Bruce Dern) caught him and has no idea he's really a wanted man...nor does the Sheriff (Earl Holliman). However, when the Sheriff does, he decides NOT to help Girard. After all, he figures, there must be a reward out for Kimble and if he helps Girard, he'll only get half. So, he hides Kimble and asks his lady friend to help...though she isn't immune to the charms of the fugitive.

This is a decent but not particularly great episode of the series. As usual, Kimble's sweet manner wins over folks...but there isn't much to distinguish this episode one way or the other.

*This looks little like Montana to me--at least the parts of Montana I've seen. But at least it's not like the time Kimble was on the Virginia coast and you see mountains! As usual, it was filmed in California and has a definite rural California look to the scenery.

Very good...just don't expect it to be just like the TV show., 24 April 2017

Neil Simon hit it out of the park with "The Odd Couple". It was a very successful Broadway play, a very popular film as well as a long- running (and often imitated) TV series. But for all you folks that are only familiar with the TV versions, the play and movie were very different. While they're all comedies, the play and film were very dark...little like the TV program. The TV show never would tackle issues like suicide and Oscar would never come to a point where he contemplates murdering Felix!!

The film begins with Felix (Jack Lemmon) wandering about New York City is a daze. His wife, sick of his incredibly neurotic and irritating behavior has finally tossed him out...and Felix doesn't know what to do with himself. He eventually wanders over to the pig sty where Oscar lives and his poker buddies all just heard about what's happened with Felix...and they are worried he might harm himself. So Oscar asks Felix to stay with him. After all, Felix is a neat freak and Oscar a total slob...and perhaps they could help each other! Well, easier said than done, as Felix is so annoying that instead of helping Oscar, he might just help push Oscar over the edge! How's it all going to end? See the film.

As I sad, this film is dark. In the TV show, no matter how angry Oscar got at Felix, you know that down deep they love each other. Here, however, you think that perhaps THIS Oscar (Walter Matthau) might just kill Felix! Overall, a very good film but one that will appeal to a different sort of audience than the TV show...a more adult one that doesn't mind exploring this dark side.

Enjoyable....yet the ending is very stupid., 24 April 2017

"Maid's Night Out" is a film that is quite enjoyable...but also understand that it's also sometimes quite stupid...mostly at the end. I am not necessarily saying to avoid the picture...just lower your expectations and enjoy...or not.

Bill (Allen 'Rocky' Lane) is the son of a rich dairy owner...and he's quite spoiled. The father thinks he's so spoiled he isn't good for much of anything. But Bill wants to prove something to his dad and makes him a bet that he can work the lowest job at the company, a milk delivery man, and not screw up in the least.

During the process of this bet, Bill meets Sheila (Joan Fontaine). And, since he's dressed as a milkman and she appears to be a servant, both thinks that they are dating a poor working class person. Imagine their surprise when they learn the truth.

So far, so good. However...the ending! The police arrest Bill for no reason in particular...other than he broke into Sheila's home by climbing in an upstairs window with his ladder! How this later came to have folks think Bill KIDNAPPED her is beyond me...and so much of what the pair do next makes perfect sense...if you have had a traumatic brain injury! It's a mess...plain and simple and I had to force myself not to turn it off when Sheila started tossing milk bottles at cops! Huh???

Heartwarming and inspiring...., 24 April 2017

"The Eagle Huntress" is a heartwarming picture...something you really wouldn't expect from a documentary! And, it shows that despite our many differences, many values are universal.

The film is set in rural Mongolia. Fortunately, the narration (Daisy Ridley) is in English and you folks who hate captions won't have to struggle too much! It's the story of a very unusual 13 year-old, as she is working to be the first female ever to compete in trials with her Golden Eagle...and many of her countrymen are dubious about a girl...and a young one at that...having the right to even compete. Fortunately, her family is quite different, as her parents, particularly her father, are immensely proud of her. Seeing and hearing them interact...that was special and the film is both heartwarming and inspiring to know that many of our values and aspirations are universal. Very well made and well worth seeing.

Very dry...., 23 April 2017

This is a Robert Benchley short. Benchley made a string of everyman films for Paramount and MGM and most showed him looking like a clueless dork. I have never been a huge fan of them though considering how many they made, somebody much have liked them.

"Home Movies" consists of Benchley showing off his boring home movies while pontificating ad nauseum about what a great filmmaker he was. However, time and again he got the shots all wrong and blames it on the machinery. He's such a fat-head that you really want this one to end and mercifully, it is a relatively short film. Additionally, the humor is practically nonexistent and there's little to commend in this one.

Fluff...100% fluff., 23 April 2017

"Too Many Girls" is fluffy little musical that most likely would be getting no attention today...if it wasn't for the chance pairing of Lucille Ball with her future husband, Desi Arnaz. Apart from this, there's not much to recommend it...not the story nor the songs.

When the film begins, four college football players decide to forego returning to their old schools but instead enroll in tiny Potowomanie College in New Mexico! Why? Because a pretty but spoiled young lady (Ball) is going there and her father hires them all to keep an eye on her from a distance. Why they would leave the top football schools in the country seems a bit dubious and it's all an excuse for a lot of singing and dancing and nonsense.

My recommendation? If you must see it, well, it's harmless. Just don't THINK very much, as the story seldom makes any sense and overthinking this one will ruin it. Otherwise, if you skip it and watch something else, the chances are what you chose instead is better!

Wilson (1944)
The expensive epic that no one apparently wanted...., 23 April 2017

When "Wilson" debuted back in 1944, it was a box office bomb. Yet, inexplicably, it received 10 Oscar nominations and took home five of the statuettes. What gives....why the disconnect? Well, I think Wilson was the beneficiary of least within the film industry. During the US involvement in WWII, AMPAS (the Oscar folks) promoted many of the more patriotic films...and a few decent films received Oscars when better, but less overtly patriotic, movies didn't. This film and "Mrs. Miniver" are both great examples of films winning Oscars that probably wouldn't have had the US not been at war...but this is especially true of "Wilson", as it was a long but rather uninspiring film...and I think the cinema going public WAS right about this one.

My dislike of parts of "Wilson" is because the film seems more concerned with being a propaganda piece than giving us a true portrait of the man. Wilson was the guy who seemed more than happy to keep black Americans 'in their place' and was also the man whose campaign slogan for the 1916 election was 'He kept us out of the war'....and then promptly declared war on Germany just a month into his second term! Clearly, he was a flawed man and history today does not see him so fondly as the movie does...especially because you can't help but wonder if they world would have a better place had the US stayed out of WWI.

Instead of showing the flaws, the film goes the other direction...practically elevating Woodrow Wilson to sainthood! He simply doesn't make mistakes in this film and often he is shown (literally) with an angelic chorus singing in order to hammer home just how godly and perfect the man was. Basically, this is an overly sentimental whitewashing of the man...more meant to bolster support in the States both for the war and the new United Nations.

The bottom line is that if you want to know about Wilson, you could either watch a 2 hour and 38 minute film and get a somewhat sanitized and one dimensional portrait...or you could just read about him and learn who he really was.

Everyone should see this before investing in a mobile home!, 22 April 2017

"The Long, Long Trailer" was made in 1953--during the height of the success of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz with "I Love Lucy". Considering how popular the show was, it's certainly not surprising they'd take the characters and transport them to the big screen, though here they're called Nicky and Tacy.

The story begins with a frustrated Nicky finally finding his wife with the trailer. Apparently, he's been looking for days and they had a huge fight and Nicky tells the guy about to buy their trailer about all the problems it brought them.

Nicky and Tacy are engaged and just about to get married when she springs a huge surprise on him...she thinks they should live in a trailer. After all, Nicky's job takes him all over the country and she reasons it would be better than paying rent. Unfortunately, her 'inexpensive' investment of only $1700 ends up costing more than three times as much...not to mention having to get a larger car to tow that monstrosity. Nicky is clearly overwhelmed by all this...and Tacy is blissfully ignorant of the entire situation. What exactly will they have to go through...see the film and find out for yourself. Just be forewarned...the movie, at times, might just make you cringe.

In some ways, this is like watching an "I Love Lucy" film...with different names and story but quite similar nonetheless. Not a great film but an enjoyable one...and one that may just convince you NEVER to own a trailer!

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