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DVD Talk reviews for Monday, June 3rd, 2019

Old 06-04-19, 03:00 AM
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DVD Talk reviews for Monday, June 3rd, 2019

Highly Recommended
The Quiller Memorandum (Blu-ray)
by DVD Savant

Reviewed by Glenn Erickson

1966's The Quiller Memorandum is a low-key gem, a pared-down, existential spy caper that keeps the exoticism to a minimum. Michael Anderson directs a classy slice of '60s spy-dom. In West Berlin, George Segal's Quiller struggles through a near- existential battle with Neo-Nazi swine more soulless than his own cold-fish handlers. Harold Pinter supplies the circular dialogue, Alec Guinness the charming insincerity and Max von Sydow a devilish menace. Quiller is mesmerized by the seductive ambiguity of lovely Senta Berger. Does she love Quiller? Or is love dead in this brave world of deceit and subterfuge?

To do his job, George Segal's hapless Quiller must set himself out as bait in the middle of a pressure play in West Berlin. It's quiet and civilized and a little artsy, and Harold Pinter's semi-stylized dialog...Read the entire review »

 

Recommended
The Strange Door (Blu-ray)
by Stuart Galbraith IV

The big surge of Hollywood-made horror movies of the 1940s came to an abrupt full stop in late 1945 and early 1946. Overnight, Frankenstein's Monster, the Wolf Man, Dracula and other gothic stalwarts vanished, except in Abbott & Costello's low-brow comedies. There would be no more Universal horrors, no more atmospheric fright films from RKO producer Val Lewton. Even Poverty Row companies like Monogram and PRC stopped making them. By the early 50s, new kinds of horror emerged: science fiction movies incorporating horror elements, movies about the threats posed by nuclear weapons, radiation, and - gasp! - Communist spies. Old-style horror had become pass .

One of the reasons for this is that studios like Universal were trying to get out of the B-picture business. When Universal became Universal-International in 1946, for several years they stepped up their game, producing and/or distributing clas...Read the entire review »

Fighting with My Family (Blu-ray)
by William Harrison

THE FILM:

The WWF was huge when I was in middle school circa 2000; I am sure many a teacher got annoyed with my buddies and I mimicking the Rock's "People's Elbow" in class. Fighting with My Family tells the story of Saraya Knight (Florence Pugh), a Norwich, England, native whose entire working-class family wrestles. Saraya's brother, Zak (Jack Lowden), dreams of going to America and joining the WWF, but proves less talented than Saraya. Their parents, Julia (Lena Headey) and Patrick (Nick Frost), encourage their aspirations, and Saraya's persistence ultimately pays off. As she travels with wrestling recruiter Hutch Morgan (Vince Vaughn) to the United States to train, Zak and the family remain in England, and Saraya realizes life on the road is lonely. The film's wrestling federation background elicited much nostalgia from me, and Fighting with My Family proved...Read the entire review »

The Dick Cavett Show: Inside the Minds of... Volume 3
by Francis Rizzo III

In 10 Words or Less

Dick Cavett interviews a quartet of great black comedians

The Show

Though the box makes no mention of it, the theme of this collection of episodes of The Dick Cavett Show, is obviously iconic black comedians, delivering five ...Read the entire review »

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