Monday, March 5, 2007

Recent Movies

Last Thursday, I turned on the tv just as a movie was starting on the Turner movie channel. It was The Seventh Veil!! I hadn't seen this for years, and at that time I was a highly-impressionable youngster. Now I'm just highly impressionable. Ann Todd as Francesca, the orphaned pianist... Herbert Lom, the psychiatrist determined to understand the nature of her torment... they seemed to fade into the background... it was James Mason at his best who really remained in my memory. His fabulous sybillant "s" as he said "Francesca" in his mildly threatening tones... "If you won't play for me, you'll play for no-one!" Women everywhere sighed in 1945 as James Mason brought his cane down on the piano keys and Francesca's dainty digits. Disconcertingly controlling, cruel and manipulative, and utterly irresistible as only James Mason could be. rrrrrrRRRRRRRrrrrrrr...

Then two weeks ago it was The Rains of Ranchipur (1955). This starred Lana Turner as the rich wife of poor-but-titled Michael Rennie who goes to India to buy a stallion... and finds a handsome Hindu doctor instead, played by Richard Burton in bootpolish and some fancy turbans. Indeed, as the tagline stated on the original posters: Theirs was the great sin that even the great rains could not wash away! Ange and I watched it together and had to keep pausing the tape so we would miss nothing as our hysterical laughter drowned out the priceless dialogue. "There are some men who have a rendezvous with destiny."

This weekend I saw The Prestige (2006) with Mark. At first I found the jumping back and forth between times and also who was reading whose notebook a little worrying and I felt kind of alienated from it. Then - whoomph! - it got me! What a movie! I highly recommend this. Yes, this gets 10 exclamation points! Hee hee! M. enjoyed it very much as well (we even managed to create some Simpsons references which is not difficult as we manage to relate almost anything to a Simpsons episode) and I think we're going to watch The Illusionist at some point soon.


Ra Ra said...

Ahhh, The Rains of Ranchipur! Like a tonic to the romantic stirrings of any forlorn soul, that movie was. Such extravagance, such richness, such dialogue!

"I'll have to tell you why I married you, some other disenchanted evening.."

Spoken on a train in the middle of cocktails during an acid-tipped conversation between husband and wife, both clearly trapped in a loveless marriage and heading for God-only-knows-what destiny at the end of the line.

Richard Burton made you forget that it was Richard Burton. His acting was so pure that one quite forgot the actor and was consumed by the performance.

Highly recommended and I give it 4 champagne flutes of approval!

Protege said...

Hello G! I am reading some of your old posts.:)
My one year "blogoversary" is coming up in 5 weeks and I got to think about you and how instrumental you were in why I even have started to write it.;)
"The Prestige" is one of my favorite movies.;)
I hope you are fine, I am sending you my very best.:)