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Crow Hollow
Michael McCarthy, 1952
Thriller
DVD


From TMDb:
A greedy woman tries to poison her nephew's (Donald Houston) bride (Natasha Parry) in a dark mansion.
Low-budget British offering that never really quite convinces in its upper-middle class portrayal but for me that's offset by the inclusion of the marvellous Esma Cannon as one of the aunts. The tale is serviceable, if rather routine, but the major events are telegraphed so it's never particularly thrilling. Sadly (and no fault of the film) the brief TMDb synopsis stupidly mentions who plays the guilty party (which I have edited out here) thus removing any element of 'whodunnit' and making that aspect somewhat difficult to rate.


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Must admit I've not heard of or seen the above film, but you caught my attention with ESMA CANNON. That diminutive Sydney gal has a strong following in this household, and I'll surely be seeking out this movie quick smart. Cheers!



Must admit I've not heard of or seen the above film, but you caught my attention with ESMA CANNON. That diminutive Sydney gal has a strong following in this household, and I'll surely be seeking out this movie quick smart. Cheers!
My rating may be a tad generous if I'm honest (the synopsis with a spoiler made rating a tad difficult) but it was an ok watch and it's always a delight to spend a little time with her imo. Hopefully you find it available to you.

edit: There's a not so great copy of it on YT here if you can't find a cleaner copy elsewhere.



My rating may be a tad generous if I'm honest (the synopsis with a spoiler made rating a tad difficult) but it was an ok watch and it's always a delight to spend a little time with her imo. Hopefully you find it available to you.

edit: There's a not so great copy of it on YT here if you can't find a cleaner copy elsewhere.
Thanks very much. I've just located a fairly decent 480p version of it, which is good enough for my usual viewings. Most of what I watch on a regular basis is in this general area of entertainment, i.e. b-grade stuff, so I know what to expect. Can't get enough of it really.



El monopolio de la estupidez - [The Monopoly Of Stupidity]
Hernan Velit, 2017
Drama
DVR - Filmbox Arthouse


From IMDb:
Miguel, a 27th young man, woke up one morning with the job of processing his death father intestate succession certificate. When he arrive to the registration office, the process and their public servers show him that the bureaucracy it seems like a joke, but isn't, putting him in a labyrinth of papers and windows.
Decent enough short (20 mins) with a darkly comic undertone on the frustrations of dealing with the realms of governmental bureaucracy. Nothing groundbreaking but most of us have probably been there at one time or another so it's easily relatable and manages to avoid belabouring any point.


+



The House In Marsh Road
Montgomery Tully, 1960
Horror, Thriller
DVD


From TMDb:
When a woman inherits a valuable house, her nasty husband and his mistress plot murder. But the house has a protective poltergeist who thwarts the wicked pair.
Low-budget affair that isn't acted too badly and does manage to build a little atmosphere in the second half once the murderous intentions come into play - but it's a tale that offers no real surprises and the budgetary constraints reduce the supernatural element to something more akin to comical in the first half which, combined with some obvious model work, sadly render the climax less impactful than it perhaps ought to be.





A Man Returned
Mahdi Fleifel, 2016
Crime, Documentary, Romance, War
DVR - Filmbox Arthouse


From IMDb:
Love in the midst of chaos.
Short (30 min) about a gun-toting, drug-addicted Palestinian refugee and his wedding in a Lebanese refugee-camp. As a glimpse at life inside Ain El-Helweh (which comes across like a small/meduim sized town) it's not entirely without interest, but is very limited. As a snapshot of a man whom life has quite possibly offered very little it sadly fails to impart much at all though, other than he still appears to retain hope for some sort of future. At least we know from his inclusion in 3 Logical Exits from the same director in 2020 that he makes it that far.





Papa, sdokhni - [Why Don't You Just Die!]
Kirill Sokolov, 2018
Comedy, Crime, Drama, Thriller
DVR - Filmbox Arthouse


From IMDb:
Andrey, a detective and the world's most horrible father, brings together a terrible group of people in his apartment: his resentful actress daughter, an angry thug, and a cheated cop. Each one of them has a reason to want revenge..
Russian offering that certainly doesn't hold back on the gore and does have the odd moment to bring a smile but certainly doesn't ease the viewer into the tale and initially is overly stylised with slow mini-zooms, close-ups and slow-motion sequences which coupled with the editing and score makes it a somewhat annoying watch imo. Thankfully the segmented tale does eventually become less irritating in terms of style but at times it still feels like a director using techniques just because he can and whilst watchable it never really amounts to anything more than an occasionally amusing love-letter primarily addressed to Quentin Tarantino that kinda fizzles out in the end imo.





Bait
Mark Jenkin, 2019
Drama
DVR - Film4


From IMDb:
Martin Ward is a cove fisherman, without a boat. His brother Steven has repurposed their father’s vessel as a tourist tripper, driving a wedge between the brothers. With their childhood home now a getaway for London money, Martin is displaced to the estate above the picturesque harbour. As his struggle to restore the family to their traditional place creates increasing friction with tourists and locals alike, a tragedy at the heart of the family changes his world.
Painstakingly made and widely acclaimed it may be, and the look at how the spread of modernity is gradually eroding tradition is certainly worthwhile - but sadly for me the often stilted style of presentation (though filmed beautifully) is somewhat unappealing with the characters mostly coming across more like 'pod-people' than human (presumably intentional but for me it detracts from proceedings). The post-production sound dubbing is definitely a major plus though, just a shame that use of sound is enhancing something that doesn't work that well for me in the first place.





Los trapos al sol - [Dirty Linen To The Sun]
Ramiro Zamorano, 2014
Drama, Family
DVR - Filmbox Arthouse


From TMDb:
Silvana travels to Southern Chile in search of her father, the hours pass and the anxiety increases waiting for his return. Meanwhile, she spends her time daydreaming about the encounter, discovering the imposing place and its people.
Short (12 mins) that's competently enough made and it does convey a sense of the inner feelings of the central character but even allowing for the short runtime one is left feeling there could have been a little more meat on the bones.


+



Tread Softly
David MacDonald, 1952
Crime, Drama, Mystery
DVD


From TMDb:
Story of a chorus girl who is "discovered" and finds romance during the unraveling of a mystery in a once derelict theatre.
Low-budget drama that attempts to incorporate both a murder mystery and chorus-girl makes good alongside song and dance numbers that sadly never quite gels as a whole. The strands of the dramatic fare could work well enough in conjunction with each other but sadly the song and dance numbers intermittently interrupt any flow and really aren't of anywhere near a high enough quality to afford any compensation.





Fire Maidens Of Outer Space
Cy Roth, 1956
Sci-Fi
DVD


From TMDb:
An astronaut (Anthony Dexter) and crew land on Jupiter's 13th moon and find a monster and women from Atlantis.
Ultra low-budget offering that's much maligned and ridiculed but, whilst the lack of budget ensures there may not be all that much to commend it for, to me it's not entirely devoid of charm or even enjoyment of a sort.





That elusive hide-and-seek cow is at it again
Fire Maidens Of Outer Space
Cy Roth, 1956
Sci-Fi
DVD


From TMDb:

Ultra low-budget offering that's much maligned and ridiculed but whilst the lack of budget ensures there may not be all that much to commend it for, to me it's not entirely devoid of charm or even enjoyment of a sort.


but that title and poster!!!! me-ow.
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Den 12. mann - [The 12th Man]
Harald Zwart, 2017
Drama, History, Thriller, War
DVD


From TMDb:
After a failed anti-Nazi sabotage mission leaves his eleven comrades dead, a Norwegian resistance fighter finds himself fleeing the Gestapo through the snowbound reaches of Scandinavia.
Decent enough wartime recounting of a tale based in reality. It does get a little schmaltzy on occasion and I'm not convinced the use of flashbacks really added much to proceedings, but generally the tale is told and acted nicely enough and despite quite a few natural lulls it holds the attention well.





The Predator
Shane Black, 2018
Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
DVR - Film4


From TMDb:
When a young boy accidentally triggers the universe's most lethal hunters' return to Earth, only a ragtag crew of ex-soldiers and a disgruntled scientist can prevent the end of the human race.
Lazily written offering that takes the Predator franchise into mostly generic modern action movie territory, complete with injections of the standard sense of humour lest it all become too exciting for faint hearts. Only in the final third does it make any real attempt to fit the franchise, and is better for that, but it's far too little, too late and soon devolves back into 'production line' fare anyway.


+



Den 12. mann - [The 12th Man]
Harald Zwart, 2017
Drama, History, Thriller, War
DVD


From TMDb:

Decent enough wartime recounting of a tale based in reality. It does get a little schmaltzy on occasion and I'm not convinced the use of flashbacks really added much to proceedings, but generally the tale is told and acted nicely enough and despite quite a few natural lulls it holds the attention well.


I caught this a couple of years ago, pretty much walked in blind. I agree it was solid. I might agree with the rating; maybe I'd shave that extra half popcorn bag and round it to 3.
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I caught this a couple of years ago, pretty much walked in blind. I agree it was solid. I might agree with the rating; maybe I'd shave that extra half popcorn bag and round it to 3.
I gave it the extra half-bag because it could so easily have dipped into melodrama on a number of occasions but mostly avoided doing so. I also liked how some of those that aided him left an impression despite not having a great deal of screen time. Also I'm a bit of a sucker for against-the-odds tales such as this, especially when those being outwitted are nazis



I gave it the extra half-bag because it could so easily have dipped into melodrama on a number of occasions but mostly avoided doing so. I also liked how some of those that aided him left an impression despite not having a great deal of screen time. Also I'm a bit of a sucker for against-the-odds tales such as this, especially when those being outwitted are nazis
Yeah, I agree. I also enjoyed Jonathan Rhys Meyers performance as the antagonist.



Blood Of The Vampire
Henry Cass, 1958
Horror, Sci-Fi
DVD


From TMDb:
A man and wife are terrorized by Mad Scientist Dr. Callistratus who was executed but has returned to life with a heart transplant. Along with his crippled assistant Carl, the 'anemic' Mad Scientist, believed to be a vampire, conducts blood deficiency research on the inmates of a prison hospital for the criminally insane to sustain his return to life.
Somewhat misleading affair in terms of both the title and tagline "He begins where Dracula left off" but perfectly watchable (if a little lacking in excitement) and akin to Hammer House Of Horror productions (though inferior imo). Donald Wolfit is ok as the villain whilst Victor Maddern provides enough malice as his sidekick and Vincent Ball channels his best inner-Flynn as the hero of the piece.


+