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Showing posts from January 8, 2006
Beulah for the 1952-53 (film #5 on The Beulah Show section of TVParty). [Category: Early Film & TV]Brief clip from “Beulah” showing the opening credits and Louise Beavers offering a witty, stereotyped bon-mot. Another example of the difficulties African Americans had to face in show business during that time.
Ratings: Camp/Humor Value: ****. Weirdness: ****. Historical Interest: *****. Overall Rating: ****.
Batman and Robin Discover the Missing Show (film #32 in the 1966 ABC Fall Preview section of TVParty). [Category: Commercial]Campy, silly ending to the 1966 ABC fall preview show, in which Batman and Robin discover Milton Berle under the desk and sentence him to a series run of five years. It ends with some very 60s-style groovy animation. A real blast from the 60s.
Ratings: Camp/Humor Value: ****. Weirdness: ****. Historical Interest: *****. Overall Rating: ****.
The Adventures of Gadi Ben Sussi (film #8 in the Pre-State section of Stephen Spielberg Jewish Film Archive). [Category: Sleaze & Outsider]Primitive silent cartoon from the early 30s showing the adventures of a Yemenite character in Tel-Aviv, with subtitles in Hebrew. Frankly, I couldn’t make head nor tails of this one, though it was rather fun to look at, what with its tooney animation and body parts flying everywhere.
Ratings: Camp/Humor Value: ***. Weirdness: ****. Historical Interest: ****. Overall Rating: ***.
Channah Means Grace (film #3 in the Health section of the State of Israel section of Stephen Spielberg Jewish Film Archive). [Category: Public Service]This touching film from the early 50s profiles Channah, a girl who cannot walk due to injuries she suffered in a DP camp, and how she is helped by professionals at the Hadassah Medical Center to walk again. Surgery and physical therapy result in her legs returning to normal, yet Channah will not try to walk without assistance. A psychological evaluation reveals that Channah’s traumatic experiences make it hard for her to trust, so the treatment team makes the wise decision to build Channah’s desire for rehabilitation by having her take dance classes, something she has shown interest in. Eventually, she learns to walk by learning to dance. This is a very well-made film that shows an unusual degree of understanding of its troubled protagonist and of the importance of psychological factors in physical rehabilitation. It is one of the bette…
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Air Head Videos 2 (film #303 on Open Source Movies). [Category: Outtakes & Obscurities]More Stupid Lego Tricks. The giant baseball is pretty cool, though, as well as the metamorphosis scene.
Ratings: Camp/Humor Value: ***. Weirdness: ***. Historical Interest: ****. Overall Rating: ***.
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Collision of the Andrea Doria and the Stockholm (film #47 in the Featured Clip Archive section of WPA Film Library). [Category: News]Fairly exciting newsreel story about the early-60s shipwreck of the Andrea Doria after she collided in the fog with the Stockholm. This has lots of historical value, as well as striking footage of a ship sinking below the waves.
Ratings: Camp/Humor Value: N/A. Weirdness: ***. Historical Interest: *****. Overall Rating: ****.
And on the Seventh Day (film #8 in the Cities section of the State of Israel section of Stephen Spielberg Jewish Film Archive). [Category: Military & Propaganda]Residents of Jerusalem flash back to painful experiences from the Six-Day War in this 60s film. Unfortunately, it’s in French, so I couldn’t understand the narration, but even given the language barrier, the film has impact. This is one I really wish the archive had provided English subtitles for.
Ratings: Camp/Humor Value: N/A. Weirdness: ***. Historical Interest: *****. Overall Rating: ****.
Felix the Cat Swtiches Witches (film #7 on Felix the Cat, Vol. 1 (Video Resources, 1994)). [Category: Hollywood]It's Halloween night, and Felix goes around pulling pranks. Just when you're wondering why he is fooling around with a lame old jack-o-lantern instead of manipulating reality, he starts switching the front and back ends of various animals and inanimate objects. Now that's a prank! The cartoon ends with Felix getting his fortune told and being chased by a witch, which is not nearly as much fun as the pranks, but still, this is a great cartoon.
Ratings: Camp/Humor Value: ****. Weirdness: *****. Historical Interest: ****. Overall Rating: ****.