Saturday, March 13, 2021

Around the Blogosphere This Week

Miscellaneous bits of news and fun stuff from around the internet...

..This weekend is what's being described as the final "4 for $44" Warner Archive sale at the WBShop. Using the checkout code "SHOPWB15" provides additional savings. The sale ends on Monday the 15th, so don't delay! Although the Warner Archive Collection has announced April titles, listed in last week's roundup, it has not yet been announced what, if anything, will replace the WBShop.

...Also currently underway, through April 5th: The Kino Lorber March Madness sale.

...Coming this fall: WALT'S DISNEYLAND: A WALK IN THE PARK WITH WALT DISNEY by Marcy Carriker Smothers, author of the 2017 book EAT LIKE WALT: THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF DISNEY FOOD.

...Here's "A (Big) Dig into the Roots of Boston Noir" by Luke Poling for CrimeReads.

...The April Academy Awards ceremony may take place in Los Angeles at...Union Station?! Deadline has the story.

...Loved this essay by Mary Katharine Ham on WANDAVISION (2021), grief, and processing the year that was.

...The Disney+ streaming service has now passed 100 million subscribers in just 16 months. Incidentally, we splurged on "Premier Access" to be able to watch RAYA AND THE LAST DRAGON (2021) on Disney+ immediately; it opened theatrically in some parts of the country on March 5th. I've watched the first half and am enjoying it; it's visually stunning. I should have a review posted here in a few days. In the meantime, a trailer is here.

...At long last, California movie theaters begin reopening over the next few days. I hope to be fully vaccinated and in a theater to see Marvel's BLACK WIDOW (2021) when it opens May 7th. We'll see what happens! If I've learned anything in the last year it's to expect the unexpected.

...New Kino Lorber Studio Classics announcements: The British Noir Collection III is coming on DVD July 13th, featuring five films: THE FRIGHTENED LADY (1940), THE BRASS MONKEY (1948), THIRD TIME LUCKY (1949), TALL HEADLINES (1952), and BREAKAWAY (1956). Listed by Kino Lorber as "coming soon" are Blu-ray releases of VERA CRUZ (1954) with Gary Cooper and Burt Lancaster and THE MAD DOCTOR (1941) with Basil Rathbone, Ellen Drew, and John Howard.

...And coming to Blu-ray on May 18th, from Kino Lorber and the Cohen Film Collection, is the charming IT HAPPENED TOMORROW (1944) starring Dick Powell and Linda Darnell. I reviewed the film back in 2009 and am really looking forward to revisiting it via the new Blu-ray.

...The Academy Museum has announced some of its initial programming. The long-awaited grand opening is scheduled for September 30th.

...There's a great-looking new book coming soon from historian James L. Neibaur: CLARK GABLE IN THE 1930S: THE FILMS THAT MADE HIM KING OF HOLLYWOOD, published by McFarland.

...The Santa Barbara Film Festival begins at the end of March and will be free this year. The festival will feature two ocean-front drive-in theaters as well as films shown online.

...I enjoyed this profile of Jennifer Garner in The Hollywood Reporter. There's a cute anecdote that her kids have noticed that when she's approached in public, people seem to feel she's a friend they already know.

...Colin has written about Barbara Stanwyck and John Lund in NO MAN OF HER OWN (1950) at his blog Riding the High Country. I really like that film and enjoyed revisiting it thanks to Colin's post.

...New "three-fer" DVDs in the Critics' Choice Collection: A William Holden Western Triple Feature with ARIZONA (1940), TEXAS (1941), and ALVAREZ KELLY (1966), and a Loretta Young Comedy Triple Feature with PLATINUM BLONDE (1931), THE DOCTOR TAKES A WIFE (1940), and A NIGHT TO REMEMBER (1943).

...Notable Passings: I recently learned of the December passing of silent movie actor Don Marion at the age of 103...Nikki Van der Zyl, who dubbed several actresses in James Bond films, died this month at the age of 85...STARGATE SG-1 actor Cliff Simon has died following a kiteboarding accident. He was 58...Norton Juster, author of THE PHANTOM TOLLBOOTH, has passed on at 91...Frank Lupo, a longtime colleague of TV producer-creator Stephen J. Cannell, died last month at 66.

...For additional recent links of interest to classic film fans, please check out my March 6th roundup.


Blogger john k said...

Hi Laura,
Thanks so much for the wonderful news on forthcoming Kino Lorber releases and it's even better news that they are now releasing vintage Universal titles that have not even had a DVD release. Now anything is possible especially with so many unreleased Universal Noirs. I'm holding out hope for THE STORY OF MOLLY X a very "female centric" prison movie that works equally as Noir,Thriller and Social Drama. June Havoc is sensational in this one with underrated Dorothy Hart as the Femme Fatale-a potential cult item awaiting re-discovery.You also mention Cohen Media Group (distributed by Kino Lorber) and you may be interested in a Brit Noir double bill on Blu Ray due soon. They have double billed CAST A DARK SHADOW with WANTED FOR MURDER certainly two of the creepiest Brit Noirs ever made with the latter title being an early entry in the serial killer genre. To have these two great movies in high def is beyond wonderful-there just seems to be an avalanche of great Noir releases at the moment.

10:56 AM  
Blogger john k said...

Just to correct myself I always thought THE MAD DOCTOR was a Universal picture but viewing Kino's Facebook page I see that in fact it was a Paramount picture. The title will be leased from Universal as they now own all the vintage Paramount titles up to about 1949.Apart from the unreleased Universal titles there is a whole wealth of Paramount product as well. The Paramount title that I'd love to see get a high def makeover is the amazing PERSONS IN HIDING a cult item in waiting if ever there was one as the film both pre dates GUN CRAZY and BONNIE & CLYDE. There is a whole wealth of amazing Paramount B Movies in Universal's vaults,I'm thinking about titles like PAROLE FIXER,UNDERCOVER DOCTOR,QUEEN OF THE MOB,PRISON FARM,TIP OFF GIRLS,WOMEN WITHOUT MEN to name a few.

11:58 AM  
Blogger john k said...

Sorry Laura,I've yet again got to correct myself instead of WOMEN WITHOUT MEN I should have said WOMEN WITHOUT NAMES,Robert Florey's amazing Paramount B Picture. There was a 50's Brit B Picture called WOMEN WITHOUT MEN with Beverly Michaels.

12:07 PM  
Blogger Seth said...

Thanks of that tip on the extra WBShop discount! I'll also have to take a look at the Kino Lorber sale. And of course you know Smothers' new book looks very appealing to me.

10:08 PM  
Blogger dfordoom said...

I'm making my way slowly through the first two volumes of Kino Lorber's British Noir sets. My impression so far is that the movies are not very noir at all but they're excellent British crime thrillers. And British crime thrillers of that era are a passion of mine - very different from American crime films but in their own way every bit as good.

So I'll almost certainly buy the third set.

3:41 AM  
Blogger Hamlette (Rachel) said...

Oh help and bother, that DVD sale from WB is going to cost me some money. SO many to choose from! Yikes!

9:19 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

Thank you all so much for your comments! I left town just after posting this so am a bit behind on answering.

John, loved all the great info, thank you! I would love to see THE STORY OF MOLLY X. As you may remember, I'm also a fan of Dorothy Hart, and I see it also stars another favorite, John Russell.

I was very impressed by PERSONS IN HIDING and remember enjoying PAROLE FIXER, and the other films you mention sound interesting as well. It's been really encouraging how many "not on DVD" films Kino Lorber is bringing out this year so it will be interesting to see what the future brings.

Seth, I hope you made some good finds at the WB Shop sale. I've gone a little crazy recently with all the sales!!

DforDoom, I need to watch more of the British Noir sets. I have both of them here and it's just a matter of making the time to get to them -- I really enjoy the kinds of British films you describe.

Rachel, I hope you also made some good finds at the WBShop sale. Maybe some of the beautiful new musical Blu-rays? I'd love to hear what people ended up choosing! My list included pre-Codes, THE BISHOP'S WIFE, and upgrading THE BEST YEARS OF OUR LIVES to Blu-ray.

Best wishes,

7:56 PM  
Blogger Hamlette (Rachel) said...

I discovered that every title in the sale also cost just $11, no matter if it was in multiples of 4 or not, so I ordered 6! The Pajama Game and The Unsinkable Molly Brown, both of which I've seen long ago and am eager to see again, and then four I've never seen: Rhapsody in Blue, Annie Oakley, Silver River, and Gold of Seven Saints. So, three musicals and three westerns :-D

2:24 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

That's fantastic, Rachel! I love your pics. Believe it or not, I've not seen the same four movies you mention, though I have them all in one format or another (sometimes just TV recordings). GOLD OF THE SEVEN SAINTS is intriguing, given its leading men. As you watch the movies I'd love to know your thoughts -- hope you might write about them at your blog or perhaps leave comments here.

It sounds like it's going to take a while for some of the orders to ship!

Best wishes,

12:20 AM  

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