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Frank's Movie Log

My life at the movies.

  1. A still from A Holy Terror (1931)

    A Holy Terror 1931

    F: 1 star (out of 5)

    Directed by Irving Cummings. Starring George O'Brien, Sally Eilers, Rita La Roy, and Humphrey Bogart.

    George O’Brien plays a New York socialite who flies his prop-plane to Wyoming to investigate his father’s murder. After crash-landing in Sally Eilers’s shower, O’Brien runs up against Humphrey Bogart, who plays the foreman of the man O’Brien flew in to see. Continue reading...

  2. A still from Blood Rage (1987)

    Blood Rage 1987

    C: 3 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by John Grissmer. Starring Louise Lasser, Mark Soper, Julie Gordon, and Jayne Bentzen.

    It’s Thanksgiving in Jacksonville, Florida. Terry’s twin brother—institutionalized since childhood for a brutal hatchet murder—returns to the family’s garden apartment home. This causes Terry—who actually committed the murder—to embark on a killing rampage. Continue reading...

    Watched on 26 Nov, 2020
  3. A still from The Black Camel (1931)

    The Black Camel 1931

    C+: 3 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Hamilton MacFadden. Starring Warner Oland, Sally Eilers, Bela Lugosi, and Dorothy Revier.

    Competent—if unremarkable—Charlie Chan mystery. Bela Lugosi cuts a striking figure as an enigmatic psychic who may—or may not—figure in a starlet’s murder in Honolulu. Continue reading...

  4. A still from Ladies' Man (1931)

    Ladies' Man 1931

    C: 3 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Lothar Mendes. Starring William Powell, Kay Francis, Carole Lombard, Gilbert Emery, Olive Tell, and Martin Burton.

    William Powell plays a gigolo romancing a married older woman and flirting with her daughter played by Carole Lombard. A chance encounter with a socialite played by Kay Francis forces him to reconsider his lifestyle, but perhaps too late. Continue reading...

  5. A still from Bad Sister (1931)

    Bad Sister 1931

    D+: 2 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Hobart Henley. Starring Conrad Nagel, Sidney Fox, Bette Davis, and Humphrey Bogart.

    Bette Davis’s debut. Sidney Fox plays the titular opportunistic sister in an upstanding Ohio family who falls for a con-man played by Humphrey Bogart. Davis plays her long-suffering sister in a forgettable part. Bogie’s vulpine in his first heel role, but the predictable plot and flat performances from Fox and lead Conrad Nagel sink this effort.

  6. A still from Oh, for a Man! (1930)

    Oh, for a Man! 1930

    F: 1 star (out of 5)

    Directed by Hamilton MacFadden. Starring Jeanette MacDonald, Reginald Denny, Marjorie White, and Warren Hymer.

    Opera diva Jeanette MacDonald runs roughshod over everyone in her life only to fall for cat-burglar Reginald Denny, who she meets when he burgles her bedroom. Denny, of course, has aspirations of a singing career himself. Continue reading...

  7. A still from Wild Company (1930)

    Wild Company 1930

    D+: 2 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Leo McCarey. Starring Frank Albertson, Joyce Compton, Sharon Lynn, and H.B. Warner.

    Frank Albertson plays a powerful tycoon’s gadabout son who falls for a gangster’s moll and finds himself implicated in a nightclub owner’s murder. Opens strong with Albertson playing an engaging drunk, but devolves into a preachy social outrage melodrama. Bela Lugosi’s small role as the unfortunate nightclub owner proves unremarkable.

  8. A still from Spider-Man: Far from Home (2019)

    Spider-Man: Far from Home 2019

    D+: 2 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Jon Watts. Starring Tom Holland, Samuel L. Jackson, Jake Gyllenhaal, and Marisa Tomei.

    Unpolished script suffers from repetitive exposition, forced comedy, and trite plotting. This one needed another year in the oven.

    Watched on 21 Nov, 2020
  9. A still from Hatchet III (2013)

    Hatchet III 2013

    C+: 3 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by BJ McDonnell. Starring Danielle Harris, Kane Hodder, Zach Galligan, and Caroline Williams.

    Picks up where part 2 ends. The bigger budget manifests in location photography and formal rigor that match the script’s ambitions. Crowley is a hulking, roaring beast. The script’s usual mix of humor and violence includes some well-timed self-deprecating jabs. A belabored side-plot involving the original films’ heroine and a reporter drags but almost pays off with a laugh-out-loud cameo. Edges the original for my favorite of the series thus far.

  10. A still from The Criminal Code (1930)

    The Criminal Code 1930

    C+: 3 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Howard Hawks. Starring Walter Huston, Phillips Holmes, Constance Cummings, and Boris Karloff.

    Howard Hawks’s second sound picture. A competent prison-reform drama that nevertheless feels like a work-for-hire job. Walter Huston’s electric as a former district attorney turned prison warden, and Boris Karloff maximizes his role as a grudge-bearing convict. But Phillips Holmes doesn’t register as the hard-luck protagonist. Ditto Constance Cummings as his love interest.

Pagination

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