Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The Nugget Reviews

The Late George Apley ( 1947 ) 18k

A warm and humorous look at the life of one George Apley, a 100% proof Bostonian - during the first decade of the 20th century, and the circumstances leading up to his children's marriages.  Ronald Colman, Peggy Cummins, Edna Best, Richard Haydn, Richard Ney, Mildred Natwick. Directed by Joseph Mankiewicz. 20th Century Fox. 

This film was absolutely delightful. It tickled me pink....but then I'm a great fan of Richard Haydn and dry humor. This plays out much like an Oscar Wilde comedy. Ronald Colman is excellent in his role as stuff-shirted George Apley, as is the rest of the cast. 

Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House ( 1948 ) 14k

Mr. Blandings decides that he is ready to chuck the city life to live in the country, only the house he has purchased needs to be tore down and rebuilt ( and his pockets emptied ) before he can settle in tranquility. Cary Grant, Myrna Loy, Melvyn Douglas, Reginald Denny. Directed by H.C Potter. RKO Pictures. 

"Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House" always gets touted as a classic and compared to a lot of other films it does have its charm, but when it comes to the best "lets-fix-up-a-house" film, "George Washington Slept Here" ( 1942 ) is the topper. "Mr. Blandings.." repeats a lot of the same jokes and has the feel of an overextended Joe McDoakes How-to short. Melvyn Douglas is excellent as Bill Cole. 

Merrills Merauders ( 1962 ) 14k

General Frank Merrill takes 3,000 infantry volunteers through some of the thickest jungle of Burma to help relieve the British troops by taking the airstrip at Myitkyina. Jeff Chandler, Ty Hardin, Andrew Duggan, Claude Akins, Peter Brown, John Hoyt. Directed by Samuel Fuller, Warner Brothers. 

This film is full of actors who look like other actors..Jeff Chandler reminded me of Gregory Peck here, Ty Hardin as Jeffrey Hunter, and Peter Brown as Stephen Boyd. John Hoyt was excellent as General Stillwell and the location shots were beautiful but other than that this is a standard war film. It seems to build up to a climax which, disappointingly, never happens.

Two for the Seesaw ( 1962 ) Elct.

A recently divorced lawyer from Nebraska tries to start his life anew in New York with a young dancer, but finds that he is tied to his past more strongly than he realized. Robert Mitchum, Shirley MacLaine. Directed by Robert Wise. United Artists. 

I was expecting another "Apartment", especially with such great talent as Robert Mitchum, Shirley MacLaine and Robert Wise directing, but this was a very heavy affair instead. Although it was strangely compelling to watch. Mitchum and MacLaine's characters are much too wishy-washy and the overall tone is dark. I couldn't even find a decent photo from the movie to post. 

Blue,  White and Perfect ( 1942 ) 18k

Tough Irish detective Michael Shayne is after diamond smugglers onboard a liner bound for Hawaii in this fourth installment of the Michael Shayne series. Lloyd Nolan, Mary Beth Hughes, Helene Reynolds, George Reeves. Directed by Herbert I. Leeds. 20th Century Fox. 

Lloyd Nolan couldn't be more endearing as Shayne than he is in this film With his mischievous little grin and that twinkle in his eyes, he's a regular Irish leprechaun. Blue, White and Perfect moves along sprightly and takes us on a fun ride. "Perfect" entertainment. 


They Met in Bombay ( 1941 ) 14k

Two jewel thieves attempt to rob the same Dame's diamond necklace and fall in love in the process. Clark Gable, Rosiland Russell, Peter Lorre, Jessie Ralph, and Reginald Owen. Directed by Clarence Brown. MGM

"They Met in Bombay" began like a classic 1960s caper - exotic locations, two beautiful jewel thieves, a perfectly planned scheme - but once the theft was completed and our two thieving heroes were making their getaway the plot took some highly improbably turns. Great entertainment on the whole. 


  1. I remain a big fan of 'Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House' and one who appreciates the work of Jeff Chandler in 'Merrill's Marauders'. But, I really need to check out 'They Met in Bombay'. Thanks for the heads-up :-).

  2. Yes, if "Bombay" pops on TCM check it out! Rosiland Russell and Clark Gable have such a great chemistry together. "Mr.Blandings" is one of my top Cary Grant favorites too ( along with "Bachelor and the Bobbysoxer" )but sometimes I feel as though it is over-hyped, especially when "George Washington Slept Here" hardly gets a mention. Or maybe I'm just sympathetic to Jack Benny.....