o/t: it’s back! – Todd Mason’s Overlooked A/V: links to reviews, etc. of films, tv, radio, podcasts, stage drama, museum shows, videogames and more . . .

After a short hiatus, here’s the welcome return of Todd’s ever-rewarding roundup, Click HERE to be taken to Todd’s Sweet Freedom blog and all the individual links.

A. J. Wright: Whispering City; Marilyn McCoo

Alice Chang: Dark Souls; PlayStation 4; Persona 5; Ori and the Blind Forest

the Allan Fish Online Film Festival 2017

Anne Billson: Diamonds Are Forever (Cat of the Day)

The Big Broadcast: 21 May 2017

Bill Crider: Our Miss Brooks (1956 film) [trailer]; She’s All That [trailer]; Return of the Lash; The Man in the Iron Mask (1939 film) [trailer]; Mainly Millicent: with Roger Moore as James Bond (1964)

Bob Freelander: The Last Detail (1973)

Brandon Smith: Underrated 1987 films

Brian Arnold: The Milton Berle Show: 1966 episode with guests Adam West, Van Williams and Bruce Lee

Brian Busby: The Critical Age; The Patriot (1998 film)

Brian Lindenmuth: John Tuska on western film and westerns generally; films from Dorothy M. Johnson’s fiction

B.V. Lawson: Media Murder; Mystery Melange

Chuck Rothman: Whale Rider

Colin McGulgan: The Flying Scot; The Wild One; The Earth Dies Screaming; The Shakedown

Comedy Film Nerds: Steve Byrne; David Huntsberger; Jackie Kashian: spoiler discussion of Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2; Steve Gillespie

Cult TV: Special Branch: “Intercept”; The Frighteners: “Bed and Breakfast”

Cynthia Fuchs: Nerve; Patriots Day; The Neon Demon

Dan Stumpf: Return to Warbow: Sing and Like It; The Hustler

Dana Gould: Eddie Pepitone; Ken Reid; Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?; Lizzie Borden

David Cramner: backgammon in film and literature; Aldous Huxley on TechnoDictators

David Vineyard: This Man is News

Earl Green: Trying Times (courtesy Brian Arnold)

Elgin Bleecker: Naked City (1948 film); Line of Duty

Elizabeth Foxwell: Shield for Murder: 99 River Street; George V. Higgins speaks (1985); House by the River; David C. Raskin: Lie Detection and the Judicial System (1975 lecture)

Evan Lewis: The Maltese Falcon and related matter: The Adventures of Sam Spade: “The Kandy Tooth”; The Maltese Falcon (1941 film); Satan Met a Lady; The Maltese Falcon (1931 film); &…Star Trek Continues: “Pilgrim of Eternity”; The Brasher Doubloon

The Faculty of Horror: The Descent

George Kelley: Cabaret (current stage production); The Grace Kelly Collection

Hal Horn: Underrated 1987 films

How Did This Get Made?: Stealth; My Stepmother is an Alien

Iba Dawson: The Get-Down; Turner Classic Film Festival 2017: Ntrate; Pre-Code Films

International Waters: Graham Elwood; Guy Branum; Caroline Mabey; Lucy Pearman; host Dave Holmes; Bil Dwyer, Ophira Eisenberg, Tom Bell, and Holly Burn

Ivan G. Shreve Jr.: Spotlight Scandals; the color episodes of The Andy Griffith Show; The Mysterious Airman; Trials of O’Brien; Never Let Me Go; Calvin and the Colonel; Feel My Pulse; Afraid to Talk; Crime Does Not Pay: “A Thrill for Thelma”; Blondes and Redheads: Pre-Code Comedy Classics, Volume 2; Swiss Family Robinson (1940 film); Early Women Filmmakers

J Kingston Pierce: Roger Moore; more on Moore

Jack Seabrook: The Alfred Hitchcock Hour: “The Gentleman Caller”; “Return of Verge Likens”; “Bed of Roses”

Jackie Kashian/The Dork Forest: David Huntsberger; Bryan Cook; Renee Camus; Al Madrigal (on Lee Child); Scott Rogers

Jackie Kashian and Laurie Kilmartin: The Jackie and Laurie Show

Jacqueline T. Lynch: Feud: Bette and Joan; The Pied Piper (1942 film); Five Stars: Teresa Wright, Ann Blyth (surprise!), Joseph Cotten, Paul Lukas, Wallace Ford

Jake Hinkson: Dekalog; They Live by Night

James Clark: The Wind Will Carry Us; Ten (2002 Iranian film)

James Curtiss: Underrated 1987 films

James Reasoner: Whispering Smith; Stagecoach: The Texas Jack Story; Broken Trail (2006 telefilm); My Favorite Brunette

Janet Varney/The JV Club: Christine Lennon; University of Chicago Sex Week Panel; Kristina Rodgers

J.D. Lafrance: Frantic

Jedidiah Ayres: Small Crimes

Jerry House: I Married Joan; The White House Correspondents Dinner; The Burns and Allen Show (radio): “What’s Wrong with Gracie”; Mr. I. A. Moto: “Project 77”; Postmark for Danger; The Lady from Chungking; The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour: last episode; The Clock: “Nicky”; This is Your FBI: “The Friendly Killer”; The Adventures of Topper

John Grant: Un Crime; A Time to Kill (1955 film); Wrong Number (2002 film); Powers Boothe; “Tragic Error”; The Mysterious Doctor; Inquest; The Purple Gang; “Los Crímenes”

John Scoleri: Dark Shadows Before I Die

John Varley: Death Race 2050; Empire of the Sun

Jonathan Lewis: Rage (1972 film); The Night Evelyn Came Out of the Grave; The Treasure of Pancho Villa; Ghost Town (1988 film)

Judy Gold/Kill Me Now: Felicia Michaels

Karen Hannsberry: Great Villain Blogathon; Five Stars: Jean Harlow, Norma Shearer, Barbara Stanwyk, Joan Crawford and Bette Davis; Hold Your Man

Kate Laity: “Witches” at September Gallery

Ken Levine: next season’s sitcoms; sitcom writing underachievement

Kim Newman: Kaboom; Don’t Let Him In; Cobra Woman

Kliph Nesteroff: The Steve Allen Christmas Show (1961); The Paul Lynde Show (with guest Jodie Foster).[..a vintage example of sub-par sitcom writing…]; East Side, West Side: “The Beatnik and the Politician” with Alan Arkin

Kristina Dijan: The Invisible Ray; Union Depot; Great Villains Blogathon; The Taking of Pelham One Two Three (1974)

Laura G: Disneyland; Split Second; Dina Merrill and Roger Moore; Daredevils of the Red Circle; Challenge to Lassie; Spencer’s Mountain; All the King’s Men; Hollow Triumph; The Big Heat; Iron Man (1951 film); The Man Who Cheated Himself; Arthur Lyons Film Noir Festival 2017

Lindsey D: Eyewitness (1956 film); Let’s Make It Legal; Topper Returns; Extraordinary Tales; Two on a Guillotine

The Long Shot: Tim Baltz; Helen Hong; Paul Danke; Jordan Brady

Louis Fowler: South Bronx Heroes; The Firm

Maria Alexander: What Star Wars (including the radio series) meant for me…

Mark Anthony Lacy: Top 12 1960s sexploitation films

Martin Edwards: Dead Man’s Evidence; Don’t Talk to Strange Men; Crimefest; Allied; Thriller of the Year (stage); Danger by My Side; Stranger in Town

Marty McKee: The Return of Count Yorga; Prescription: Murder (Columbo pilot); Silent Rage; Around the World Under the Sea: Night Patrol; Jungle Moon Men

Mildred Perkins: The Dressmaker

Mitchell Hadley: New York City-area television, 22 May 1968; Roger Moore; TV Guide 18 May 1968

Movie Sign with the Mads: The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai; The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951)

Noel Vera: Takaw Tukso (“Passion Play”); MNL 143

Patti Nase Abbott: 30 Rock; 1984 (1984 film); Late Night with David Letterman; A Quiet Passion

Patricia Nolan-Hall: Ricardo Cortez; Simon and Laura; Five Stars: Barbara Stanwyck, James Cagney, Laurel and Hardy, John Wayne; A Tree Grows in Brooklyn; Dial M for Murder (1954); Little Boy Lost; Me and My Pal; The Far Country

Paul D Brazill: Dog Soldiers; Last Cab to Darwin; Len and Company

The Projection Booth: The Lost One; The Ninth Configuration; Who is Arthur Chu?; Mommie Dearest; Wanda Whips Wall Street; Rick Marx; Tami Stronach

Raquel Stecher: The Beguiled; Dancing Lady; What’s Up, Doc?; The China Syndrome

Ren Zelen: Something Wild

Rick: The African Queen; Five Stars: Cary Grant, Deborah Kerr, David Niven, Katherine Hepburn; Young Sherlock Holmes; Billy Wider; Marlowe; equestrian films

Rod Lott: Wolves at the Door; The Circle; Rest Stop: SST: Death Flight; SnakeEater; SnakeEater II: The Drug Buster; The Belko Experiment

Ruth Kerr: Night Nurse; You Can’t Take It With You; Five Stars: Ida Lupino, The Nicholas Brothers, Thelma Ritter, John Wayne; Stella Dallas; TCM Classic Film Festival

Salome Wilde: A Woman’s Face (1938 Sweden and 1941 US); Laird Cregar; Five Stars: Barbara Stanwyck, Jean Gabin, Ida Lupino, Lauren Bacall, Peter Lorre; Nazi noir: The Murderers are Among Us; Turn the Key Softly; noir and the Oscars; Finger of Guilt (aka Intimate Stranger)

Scott Cupp: Arsene Lupin; The Giant Claw; The Neanderthal Man (1953 film); Reaper: Pilot

Sergio Angelini: Last Resort; The Woman in Green; The Marseilles Contract

Stacia Kissick Jones: Johnny Guitar; Gas-s-s-s

Stacie Ponder: The Fog

Steve Lewis: The House That Dripped Blood; The Murder of Dr. Harrigan; Hero; Company Business; Medicine Man (1992 film)

Television Obscurities: The Halls of Ivy: “The Old Professor Forgets His Umbrella”

Todd Liebenow: Underrated 1987 films

Tynan: Roman Holiday; Blue Jay; East of Eden

Vienna: The Jimmy Stewart Museum; Ricardo Cortez; Charles McGraw

Wayne Dundee: Arizona Bushwhackers

o/t: the Medicine in the Movies Blogathon

Charlene of Charlene’s (Mostly) Classic Movie Reviews announced this some little while ago, but I learned about it just yesterday. Charlene has most kindly allowed a very late enrollment from me, so expect my post on the blistering quasi-noirish medical-sf “classic” She Devil (1957) to appear on Saturday.

In the meantime, to learn about all the other excitements that will be appearing over the weekend, click on the picture below.





reblog: Raymond Burr Centennial

** When I read this stupendous (and very well illustrated) essay on one of the greats of the noirish screen, I hesitated about one millisecond before asking blogger Brian Camp if I might reblog it here. He kindly assented, so . . .

Brian Camp's Film and Anime Blog

Raymond Burr would have turned 100 today, May 21, 2017. He’s most famous for three roles, two on television and one in the movies. On television he first starred in “Perry Mason,” portraying the title character, a criminal defense attorney who won almost every case he took. The series premiered on CBS in 1957 (sixty years ago this fall) and ran for nine seasons (until 1966). He then returned to the role in a run of 26 TV movies that began in 1985 and continued until his death in 1993. (The final film aired after his death.)

Perry Mason 1957:

Perry Mason 1985:

View original post 4,596 more words

reblog: Goodbye Powers Boothe

Reblogged from Shades Of Noir :


I am saddened by the recent news of the passing of actor Powers Boothe. He had a long and varied acting career appearing on television and the big screen.  His was a face recognized by many, but perhaps his name was not as well known. As a fan of his work I knew his name. Of all the characters that he portrayed I have two clear favorites, Philip Marlowe and Gideon Malick.



In the mid 1980’s Powers Boothe brilliantly portrayed Raymond Chandler’s iconic private eye Philip Marlowe. Two all too brief seasons of the show Philip Marlowe, Private Eye aired on HBO in 1983 and 1986. Powers Boothe seemed born to play this role. He excelled at playing the




reblog: Noir and the Academy Awards

***Salome Wilde of BNoirDetour is consistently amongst the very most interesting film noir commentators, and her latest essay is no exception. I disagree with her about the merits of The Big Sleep, but that’s a tiny quibble . . . and anyway I’m (I know) in the minority on this issue.

My thanks to her for letting me do this reblog.

B Noir Detour

Students of Hollywood know the origin of the Academy Awards was in part to allow a small group of Eastern European Jewish immigrants to give each other accolades at a gala affair within (or at the edges of) a culture that had excluded them from many facets of WASP privilege. Instead, these driven men had worked in the tawdry world of business, going from peddlers to salesmen to Nickelodeon owners and then, when it became clear that Edison owned the east coast, out west to found Hollywood, an alternate American dreamland where Jews could play at every country club, own posh estates in Beverly Hills, and make movies, mass entertainment that was deemed a trite, lesser art. It wouldn’t be until the Miracle Decision of 1952 that Hollywood saw both the end of the iron grip of the self-imposed but rigidly Catholic (e.g. anti-sex and antisemitic) Motion Picture Code and the…

View original post 2,441 more words

o/t: April’s leisure reading

April was supposed to be All Translations Month, but the local library produced Elizabeth Kostova’s new, Bulgaria-set novel weeks if not months earlier than I’d expected, and, bearing in mind there were likely others in the queue, I read the book immediately . . . offering myself the weak excuse that, had I not known otherwise, I might just possibly have mistaken it for a Bulgarian novel in translation. (That’s one of its strengths, in fact.)

The links are as usual to my sketchy Goodreads notes.

[*] whom the pun-deaf gurus at Goodreads list as Rampo Edogawa.

o/t: the Allan Fish Online Film Festival 2017

This sixteen-day festival — in honor of the late Allan Fish, cineaste par excellence — will be running on the excellent cinema (and other stuff) website Wonders in the Dark on May 11-26: click on the image or HERE for further details of the impressive line-up of contributing writers.

For what it’s worth, my own contribution to the festival will appear on WitD on May 21 and be cross-posted here on Noirish on that same day in place of my scheduled Saturday post for May 20.

o/t: Todd Mason’s Overlooked A/V: the links to reviews, essays, discussions of film, television, live performance, podcasts and radio and more . . .

And another installment of Todd’s useful roundup of great movie and other a/v writing on the intertubes. Click HERE to be taken to Todd’s Sweet Freedom site and all the individual links.

A. J. Jacobs: Alabama actresses before 1960
Alice Chang: The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
Anne Billson: The Life of Oharu
The Big Broadcast: 23 April 2017
Bill Crider: Beau Brummell (1954 film) [trailer]
Bob Freedlander: The Big Heat; Experiment in Terror
Brian Busby: Tour de Force
Brian Lindenmuth: films based on the fiction of Lewis B. Patten
B. V. Lawson: Media Murder
Colin McGulgan: Money, Women and Guns
Comedy Film Nerds: Faith Choyce
Cult TV: George and the Dragon
Cynthia Fuchs: Headshot; Queen of Katwe
Dan Stumpf: Big House, U.S.A.
The Dana Gould Hour: Kliph Nesteroff, Drew Friedman; Pete Aronson
Elgin Bleecker: Charade
Elizabeth Foxwell: First Edition: “Elmore Leonard” (1984 long interview)
Eric Hillis: Hard Times; The Entity
The Faculty of Horror: 2016 in review
George Kelley: Dead Again; Teen Titans: The Judas Contract
How Did This Get Made?: Escape from LA (see Movie Sign with the Mads)
Iba Dawson: Feud: Bette and Joan
International Waters: Andy Kindler; Scott Thompson; Sara Morgan; Chris Morgan
Ivan G. Shreve Jr.: Ducks and Drakes; Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?; Fast Break; Crime Does Not Pay: “Desert Death”
Jack Seabrook, John Scoleri, Jose Cruz, Gilbert and Peter E Enfantino: 2016 film, tv and more highlights (and less so)
Jackie Kashian/The Dork Forest: Rebecca Sugar on musicals
Jackie Kashian and Laurie Kilmartin: The Jackie and Laurie Show
Jacqueline T. Lynch: Night and Day; De-Lovely
Jake Hinkson: Chicago Film Society
James Reasoner: Lady on a Train
Janet Varney/The J. V. Club: Amy Shira Teitel
J. D. Lafrance: Glengarry Glen Ross (film)
Jedidiah Ayres: On the Job
Jerry House: “Max, the Heartbreaker”; 1960?? Jimmy Cricket! (ABC Radio 1947 documentary of sorts featuring Disney voice actors)
John Grant: The Medusa Touch; La Foire aux Chimères; Flesh and the Spur
John Scoleri: Dark Shadows Before I Die
John Varley: Poltergeist (1982 film); The Night Manager
Jonathan Lewis: The Funhouse (1981 film)
Judy Gold/Kill Me Now: Cathy Ladman & Leslie Popkin; Laurie Kilmartin/Part 2
Karen Hannsberry: Great Villains Blogathon, Day 1
Kate Laity: She’s Beautiful When She’s Angry
Ken Levine: belaboring the joke; WGA labor action
Kim Newman: Mindhorn; I Start Counting; Drive, He Said
Kliph Nesteroff: Here Come the Stars (1968 television); The Phyllis Diller Show
Kristina Dijan: Children of Paradise; The Dark Tower (1943 film)
Laura G.: The Richest Girl in the World; Arthur Lyons Film Noir Festival; Other Men’s Women; Wanted! Jane Turner; Ladies of the Jury
Lindsey D.: Broadway Babies; Rome Adventure
The Long Shot: Betsy Sodaro
Maltin on Movies: festivals
Martin Edwards: CWA Annual Conference
Marty McKee: Superman and the Mole Men; The Golden Gate Murders
Mildred Perkins: Dracula’s Daughter
Mitchell Hadley: Atlanta television, 27 April 1977; TV Guide, 23 April 1977
Movie Sign with the Mads: Escape from New York; The African Queen
Noel Vera: Hell or High Water
Patricia Nolan-Hall: Speedy; Hammett’s Kasper Gutman in film
Paul D Brazill: The Bed-Sitting Room
The Projection Booth: The Red Shows; eXistenZ
Phil Nobile, Jr.: Roger Moore on Live and Let Die (courtesy Paul Brazill)
Raquel Stecher: Panique; The Graduate at 50
Rick: The Fortune Cookie
Rod Lott: Attack of the Morningside Monster; Beware! The Blob
Ruth Kerr: Great Villains Blogathon
Salome Wilde: The Scarlet Hour v. Pushover
Scott Cupp: Night of the Lepus
Serena Bramble: The Light Between Oceans
Sergio Angelini: Inspector Morse: “The Silent World of Nicholas Quinn” (Sergio points us to Chris Sullivan’s post on this episode.)
Stacia Kissick Jones: Macbeth (1948 film); Daisy Kenyon
Stacie Ponder: The Haunting
Steve Lewis: Desire and Hall at the Sunset Motel; Nine Lives are Not Enough; The Black Tent
Stephen Bowie: UK television: The Man in Room 17; It’s Dark Outside; The Plane Makers; Public Eye
Stephen Gallagher: The Beast of Hollow Mountain
Television Obscurities: Your Television Babysitter (Dumont Network, 1948-51)
Todd Mason: Soundstage, Jazz Casual, Playboy’s Penthouse and other jazz television and film footage featuring Lambert, Hendricks and Ross or Bavan
Tynan: The 400 Blows; Divorce, Italian Style
Vienna: That’s Entertainment!
Walker Martin: Windy City Pulp Convention 2017
Yvette Banek: The Manchurian Candidate (1962 film)

Medusa Touch, The (1978)

John Morlar has a gift for disaster!

UK, France / 109 minutes / color / Coatesgold, ITC Dir: Jack Gold Pr: Anne V. Coates, Jack Gold Scr: John Briley Story: The Medusa Touch (1973) by Peter Van Greenaway Cine: Arthur Ibbetson Cast: Richard Burton, Lino Ventura, Lee Remick, Harry Andrews, Alan Badel, Marie-Christine Barrault, Jeremy Brett, Michael Hordern, Gordon Jackson, Derek Jacobi, Robert Lang, Michael Byrne, John Normington, Robert Flemyng, Philip Stone, Malcolm Tierney, Norman Bird, Jennifer Jayne, Avril Elgar, James Hazeldine, Wendy Gifford, Shaw Taylor, Gordon Honeycombe, Adam Bridges, Joseph Clark.

I read the Peter Van Greenaway novel upon which this is based—one of the odder of his oddball, semi-fantasticated Inspector Cherry detective novels—quite a few years before I had a chance to watch the movie, but even so I know my viewing was affected by memories of the book. Now that many more years have passed, I was better able to enjoy the movie on its own terms.

Van Greenaway wasn’t the most fluent of writers and one had to work quite hard to read what were billed as thrillers, but I tackled several and became rather fond of them: they certainly had a greater intellectual heft than the vast majority of the crime and thriller novels with which they shared a bookshop shelf. The Medusa Touch was the one I enjoyed the most. In the movie adaptation Inspector Francis Cherry of the Yard is replaced by a French cop called Brunel, improbably working in London on some kind of exchange deal between the Yard and the Sûreté. However, as Brunel was played by Lino Ventura there are no grumbles from anyone among the extensive Noirish staff.

Brunel (Lino Ventura) begins his investigation . . .

. . . aided by the loyal Sergeant Duff (Michael Byrne).

The movie opens with successful novelist John Morlar (Burton) being beaten to death by an unidentifiable figure wielding a handy statuette. Or not quite to death, as investigating Inspector Brunel (Ventura) and his English sidekick Sergeant Duff (Byrne) discover while snooping around Morlar’s apartment. Even though the man’s brains have apparently been spilled out on the carpet and the paramedics have declared him dead, he suddenly Continue reading