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by Michael Barrett

23 May 2017


? as Pilot X

Arriving out of the wild blue yonder for silent film buffs is this serial from the tail end of the silent era, running just over three hours in ten chapters.

The setting is a flying company owned by an elderly gentleman (C.H. Allen) who has invented a few handy devices like a radio-controlled Flying Torpedo and something called an aerometer for flying through fog. Alas, a masked Pilot X (the actor continually identified as “?” in the title cards) keeps raiding the joint and causing all their planes to crash, which at a certain point puts a crimp in the business. Ace pilot Jack Baker (Walter Miller) and the owner’s daughter Shirley (Eugenia Gilbert), a crack pilot herself, investigate while carrying on their implicit romance.

by Imran Khan

27 Apr 2017


Mike Hammer (Armand Assante)

Silly, pulpy but always exciting, I, The Jury reframes the film noir of the ‘40s through a punk sheen of the flashy ‘80s. The film is based on the 1947 crime novel by Mickey Spillane of the same name, which introduced his character Mike Hammer. The book was just a first in a series that features one of the detective genre’s most popular Private Investigators. The film captures all of the same schlocky debacles that the leading character in these novels usually endures; that is, murders, high-speed chases and run-ins with gangsters (at every end—a hotel, the streets, and even a secluded camp ground).

by Michael Barrett

21 Mar 2017


Tom Conway, Ann Rutherford

A man’s silhouette walks unsteadily away from the camera, which follows slowly behind him as he approaches the signpost of an intersection at night. The shadowy man leans against the post because he’s hurt, bleeding from a head wound. He’s nearly struck by a cab, whose spunky little female driver jumps out to give him a tongue-lashing until she realizes he’s injured and doesn’t remember his name or anything else. “It’s am-something,” she says, and she’ll spend the rest of the night helping him retrace his steps to find out if he’s guilty of the murder that’s just occurred near that location.

by Michael Barrett

20 Mar 2017


While most of the titles in Kino Lorber’s Studio Classics line of Blu-rays are reasonably well-known titles that have been on DVD before, the company here performs a service in exhuming a pre-Code spectacle lost for decades. It’s of special interest to fans of old-school physical effects and early science fiction talkies.

Deluge  is an early example of what we now call the disaster film, though at the time it was advertised as a spectacle whose closest model was the same year’s King Kong. Based on a popular English novel by S. Fowler Wright, it posits an apocalypse convulsing the world with earthquakes and tsunamis, leaving survivors to rebuild.

by Michael Barrett

17 Mar 2017


Angela Lansbury and Michael York

Belying its ironic title, Harold Prince’s 1970 film, Something for Everyone, is hardly well-known, never mind a mainstream hit. It is, however, a cult specialty in that intersects several important careers more famous for Tony-winning Broadway work. With its VHS incarnations out of print for decades, it finally hits the digital era.

Riding a bicycle through Austria in his lederhosen, Konrad (Michael York) sets his sights on a castle currently owned by the poverty-stricken Countess von Ornstein (Angela Lansbury). It’s the same castle featured in his much-thumbed children’s picture book, and he will calmly go about inveigling himself into that fairy-tale ruin by any means necessary. This will involve romancing an heiress (Heidelinde Weis) and getting a job as a footman under the suspicious eye of a butler (Wolfried Lier), who represents the Nazi past.

//Mixed media
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'Full Throttle: Remastered' Is Both Updated and Dated

// Moving Pixels

"Full Throttle: Remastered is a game made for people who don't mind pixel hunting -- like we used to play.

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