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  • Quine, Richard
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    1. The World of Suzie Wong
    $13.96 list($19.94)
    2. It Happened to Jane
    $11.99 $9.16 list($14.99)
    3. Paris When It Sizzles
    $19.96 $18.59 list($24.95)
    4. Bell, Book and Candle
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    5. How to Murder Your Wife
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    6. Crime Story - Season Two
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    7. National Lampoon's Loaded Weapon
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    10. The Solid Gold Cadillac
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    11. Strangers When We Meet
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    12. Extreme Force

    1. The World of Suzie Wong
    Director: Richard Quine
    list price: $14.99
    our price: $13.49
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0001ZWLTM
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 5105
    Average Customer Review: 4.52 out of 5 stars
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    Amazon.com

    A prim young Chinese woman on the Kowloon ferry accuses a middle-agedAmerican of stealing her purse--thus begins a culture-clash romance.Seeking to escape his stifled life, Robert (William Holden, Stalag17, Sunset Boulevard) has come to Hong Kong to become anartist. He rediscovers the girl from the ferry and learns she is not whatshe seemed; she's a prostitute named Suzie Wong (Nancy Kwan, FlowerDrum Song). Though Robert resists her charms, she becomes his model,and their relationship grows surprisingly complex. While The World ofSuzie Wong can be patronizing and has some dubious interpretations ofChinese manners and mores, it's also sophisticated (in a censored sort ofway) about love, sex, and social pressure. A viewer may scoff at thechild-like hookers, yet find the movie accumulates an unexpected emotionalforce, particularly through its exploration of how the characters maintaintheir illusions. --Bret Fetzer ... Read more

    Reviews (21)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Good Movie
    "The World of Suzie Wong" is much under-rated. I think it is a well-acted, enchanting movie. William Holden and Nancy Kwan are both wonderful. I noticed another reviewer compared it to "Pretty Woman." I had not thought of it, but that is a good comparison. And the location shots in Hong Kong are "way cool." Want a good love story? Get this film.

    4-0 out of 5 stars gentle drama
    THE WORLD OF SUZIE WONG is a gentle, heartfelt, human drama of two lonely people looking for love. It's sublime.

    Robert Lomax (William Holden - THE COUNTRY GIRL, SUNSET BOULEVARD), is an American artist in Hong Kong struggling to make a decent living doing what he loves. One day while sitting on the Kowloon-Hong Kong ferry, he meets "Mei-Li", whom he is strangely attracted to.

    Soon, however, he discovers that "Me-Li" is really Suzie Wong (Nancy Kwan - FLOWER DRUM SONG), a good-time girl with delusions of grandeur. Romance soon blossoms, but not until Suzie reveals a big secret and tragedy strikes...

    Also featuring Sylvia Syms (CONSPIRACY OF HEARTS), and Michael Wilding (THE GLASS SLIPPER, STAGE FRIGHT), THE SECRET WORLD OF SUZIE WONG is a colorful romance set against the stunning backdrop of Hong Kong and the simple human passion of a lifetime.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Of Its Time, but Better Than the Sum of Its Parts...
    American William Holden, as former architect turned struggling artist, Robert Lomax, a cynic who's "pushing forty," arrives in 1960 Hong Kong to make a valiant effort for his art. He's never been there and has no idea what to expect. On the ferry boat to Kowloon, he has a sort of altercation with the very young & attractive Nancy Kwan, who claims to be named "Mei Li," a very proper young lady about to enter into an arranged marriage set up by her wealthy father. Shortly before reluctantly introducing herself, she also almost manages to have Robert arrested by claiming he's a purse snatcher, which, judging from her mirthful expression, she does for the sheer entertainment value of the situation.

    Robert, completely lost and not particularly wealthy, soon makes his way to the Wan Chai district, and, in his naivete as American abroad, fails to realize he's entered the main prostitution district in the city. His journey to the seedy hotel where he sets up shop as artist would be one of the highlights of the film: Robert's amazement and confusion at the bustling, vibrant city that has become his new home come across nicely. In many ways, the brilliant cinematography and camera work turn the city of Hong Kong itself into the unacknowledged third star of the film. However, it's a very different Hong Kong than now: very much a British colonial post, and, in segments of the neighborhoods, almost a Third World city.

    Unfortunately, once Robert reaches the hotel, the movie loses much realism, and we've plainly entered a 1950's Hollywood set version of Hong Kong (although this happens to be a British film), complete with cartoonish prostitutes and Brit sailors on leave. It turns out that prim-and-proper Mei Li's none other than "very popular" Wan Chai "girl" Suzie Wong. There are some very dated scenes that follow, although actress Jacqui Chan's charming in an off kilter way as bar girl Gwennie Lee. Nancy Kwan vamps and spouts much pidgin English and says "for goodness' sake" about 500 times in a row. There's also a scene that made me cringe with a cheap dress getting ripped off Suzie by Robert. Fortunately, Robert, Suzie, and the camera eventually hit the streets of actual Hong Kong again.

    Then, something odd happens with this film, bit by bit. The movie focuses more and more on Robert and Suzie as a couple, and, bit by bit, Suzie becomes less of a stereotypical bar girl and more and more of a human being who behaves unexpectedly. It turns out that she has developed a persona for herself, a very manipulative, successful one, that's given her an edge in a very harsh city for abandoned young women. She has an active fantasy life, that's enabled her to separate herself psychologically from the more sordid aspects of what she's done in order to survive. Robert too, becomes less and less Joe Gillis, Jr. (for those of you who've seen Holden in SUNSET BLVD. from a decade earlier), a one-note, crabby cynic with a paternalistic attitude towards Suzie, and more and more a human being who's in love. He shows this most plainly when he finds out that Suzie has an infant son, and Robert accepts little Winston affectionately as his own. In a complex way, Suzie, and also little Winston, act as muses for Robert, and his own art becomes more inspired and interesting because of them. Suzie also benefits from her love for Robert and shows some real emotion for him rather than her usual play acting.

    This is where I find the movie interesting, as it depicts, much more realistically than one might expect in 1960, the dimensions of a biracial, bicultural couple's life together. Although Robert has made contact with the British elite in the city and needs them for patronage for his art, he's never really comfortable with them or their patronizing, mildly racist way of observing the Chinese. Kay O'Neill (actress Sylvia Syms), the daughter of a well-placed British banker, falls for Robert, but he doesn't really feel any emotion for her as he does for Suzie. Of course, she can't believe Robert would really prefer Suzie to her. When he announces he's thinking of marrying Suzie, Kay's father says that, of course, he could never hire someone in those circumstances. The rest of the Brits more talk around Suzie than to her whenever she's present. Likewise, most of the Chinese, while polite with Robert, don't know quite what to make of him, either, and he seems to do better either with Suzie as intermediary or because her friends help him along. It's obvious too that sometimes cultural miscues cause Suzie and Robert to misunderstand one another. This leads to the beginning of the climax of the film, which is somewhat tragic.

    No doubt, this has been a controversial film. In the past, many Asian-American studies professors seemed to grow livid at the mention of it. This was supposed to be the ne plus ultra (or maybe the nadir, instead) for stereotypical portrayals of all Asian women as submissive little China doll characters or bar girls. There is some of that there (although much less than in most other 1950's-early 1960's American films), but, as I'd noted, the interesting thing's how the stereotype turns out to be a fake, something created for the advantage (if that's the word) of the heroine for relating to foreigners. It's also interesting how the genuine romance, one based on a sort of mutual respect between Robert and Suzie, becomes more important. Most interesting of all's the portrayal (that mostly rings true) of a biracial, bicultural romance between two human beings. As someone involved in such a relationship for many years, I found myself giving the film an extra star for this "rightness" alone. Finally, both Holden and Kwan are good in their roles and the way their characters interact. I just couldn't see France Nuyen and William Shatner (from the stage play version) evoking the same level of emotion and empathy for Suzie and Robert. It's even more remarkable that Kwan was only in her early twenties when she portrayed Suzie.

    Plus, if nothing else, this movie's a terrific time capsule/travelogue of Hong Kong, as it was never so brilliantly captured elsewhere on screen in that era.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A True Human Expeience
    'The World Of Suzie Wong' the romanticized story of a Hong Kong prostitute and an American artist is for some, a simplistic racist view of Chinese, for others, a guilty pleasure. Yes, it is both of those things but it is even more. It is a fine and tender love story of two people from very different worlds who overcome pride and prejudice and embark upon a true human experience. Forty four years after its release this film along with 'Flower Drum Song' are being re-evaluated and embraced by the Chinese American community. Why? Because beneath the surface of each film they share the common job of telling the story of their time and place with honesty and true humanity and in the case of Suzie Wong, the story is not such a happy one.
    At first we are presented in 'Suzie Wong' a stereotypical view of happy little hookers in the Wan Chai district of Hong Kong. But as the story unfolds the veneer of this portrait cracks open to reveal through Suzie just how desperate the lives of these women are. In a city of over three million crammed onto the island city it is a case of do what you must to survive. In Suzie's case she must compartmentalize her feeling into body, love, and soul and thus protect herself by pretending that she is the daughter of a rich merchant rather than a Wan Chai bargirl. Though her relationship with Robert they both learn the meaning and cost of love in a world of narrow view and prejudice.
    The film is very adult and honest in dealing with the subject of the flesh trade and racism in 1960 must have been a bit shocking on several levels. This film must be credited with opening the door to telling more honest stories of Asian's with Asian actors in the major roles. After all, not too many years before we had Jennifer Jones playing a Eurasian in 'Love Is A Many Splendored Thing'. She did a fine job, but still she was miscast. Here we have Nancy Kwan creating a memorable character, as it should be, by someone of Asian descent.
    Nancy Kwan is luminous in the role of Suzie. This was a star making turn for her and led to other good roles over the years. She is sexy, with a street-smart veneer that covers her open and trusting heart. She rises to the many emotional challenges of Suzie and succeeds in carrying the viewer through the film as only an accomplished actress can. The camera falls in love with her, as does the reluctant Robert.
    William Holden is perfectly cast as the "pushing forty" American who has come to Hong Kong to pursue his dream of being an artist. He is a pro who give the role just the feeling of wonder and discovery it needs blended with a certain worldliness that it requires. Together, Kwan and Holden are an intoxicatingly romantic couple that share a chemistry on screen most films of this genre aspire to but few achieve.
    The supporting cast is filled out by standouts such as Jacqui Chan as Gwennie Lee, Andy Ho as Ah Tong, Michael Wilding as Ben Marlow and Sylvia Simms as Suzie's rival, Kay O'Neill.
    Geoffrey Unsworth also known for his work on 'Becket', '2001 A Space Odyssey' and 'Cabaret' stunningly photographed Hong Kong for the film. His use of light and color is unsurpassed in capturing the long gone look of the city in 1960. The art direction of John Box is superb. He is best known for his work with David Lean on 'Doctor Zhivago' and 'Lawrence of Arabia'.
    It is all expertly helmed by director Richard Quine who is also responsible for 'Bell, Book, and Candle', 'Strangers When We Meet' and the delightful 'How To Murder Your Wife'.
    Of special note are the stunningly beautiful paintings of Miss Kwan by artist Liz Moore. They are indeed wonderful and one wishes there had been an addition to the DVD of slides of this artist's painting for the film.
    'The World of Suzie Wong' is a film that holds both an important place in film history and the hearts film buffs and romantics around the globe. So on that rainy Saturday afternoon when you need a little romance, drama and travel to a far off land pop in this new DVD of 'Suzie Wong' and be carried away.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Romance for guys, not a chick flick
    Today there are many "chick flicks," but The World of Suzie Wong is the quintessential "romance for guys."

    There are two parallel themes in this film: 1) the "Pygmalion" theme, which was old when George Bernard Shaw's play first appeared in 1913. Pygmalion, in classical legend, was the king of Cyprus who fell in love with his own sculpture. Hence the theme of beginning with a raw material (in this case a woman of no great position or education) and to some degree transforming her into she whom you might adore.

    Some may object to this theme carrying racist overtones, but in my view the reverse is true. The essence of the message is an absence of racism. The very fact that in this type of romantic union the protagonists are of unequal social position means that the man is attracted to the woman because of her human qualities, not because of any advantage she can provide to him in terms of social status or wealth. In fact, a man who loves such a woman is often looked down upon socially, which is present in this story. The object of Robert Lomax's love is Suzie Wong for who she is as a woman and how she makes him feel, and he gladly, even cynically disregards the disparagements of those who do not approve.

    2) Theme number two is the enchantment of the East. This is magic stuff for those so smitten, which includes your humble correspondent. In this way, this wonderful story (novel and film) is understated. It is barely believable that Lomax's attraction to Suzie would start from nothing and grow so slowly to compelling strength. Lomax must be a man of Quixotic romantic notions or he would not be trying this alternative life style of professional painting. This mixture of desire and fascination is more likely to stormily seize a man's heart, but "Robert meets Suzie-falls crazy in love-marries Suzie" would make for a ten-minute film, and that just wouldn't do, would it?

    It's also an interesting commentary on the film makers of this approximate vintage that when they wanted to tell the story of interracial romance they often seemed to think they had to attenuate the effect. Both Nancy Kwan and France Nguyen (in South Pacific), for example, were of mixed parentage, (but the Asian love interests in The Sand Pebbles and Sayonara were not).

    The World of Suzie Wong is so very romantic, and the themes explored here are enduring. I love the novel -- I love the film. I can't imagine anyone but William Holden playing Lomax (although William Shatner [believe it or not] played the stage role). This role belongs to Bill Holden. ... Read more


    2. It Happened to Jane
    Director: Richard Quine
    list price: $19.94
    our price: $13.96
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00070HK2Y
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 3425
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    3. Paris When It Sizzles
    Director: Richard Quine
    list price: $14.99
    our price: $11.99
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    Asin: B00005ALMI
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 3375
    Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars
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    Amazon.com

    Paris When It Sizzles is an unusual screwball comedy to say the least.Whether it works is another matter, but the premise and humor are interesting enough to make it enjoyable.The basic problem with the film is its two stars: William Holden and Audrey Hepburn hardly sizzle with onscreen chemistry, and Hepburn's character, Miss Simpson, falls far too easily into the hands of Holden's drunken screen writer. However, the story is an interesting play on the typical Hollywood romance, with two plotlines running in parallel to each other. Holden's Richard Benson has only two days to finish a script for an enigmatic producer (Noel Coward).Hepburn's Miss Simpson is drafted in as the typist and as the script is dictated it manifests itself on the screen, allowing the two lead characters to play out any number of romantic stories.It's the cameo appearances in the imaginary world that really steal the show, with the blink-and-you'll-miss-it last screen appearance by Marlene Dietrich, as well as Tony Curtis having fun with his own screen persona.Not one of Hepburn or Holden's best, but worth a look purely for the interesting slant on the mechanical nature of Hollywood's romances. --Nikki Disney ... Read more

    Reviews (30)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Bubbly Fun
    I'd avoided PARIS WHEN IT SIZZLES for years because of the universal pans it received -- what a mistake! The new DVD release will undoubtedly give the film a new lease on life, and hurrah for that. What movie did the critics see? This picture may not be top-drawer work from anyone involved, but it's still a great deal of fun, and definitely worth a look. Hepburn is enchanting, as always, and it's enjoyable to see her spoofing horror and action film conventions. Knowing her real-life feelings for Holden adds a special poignancy to their work together here, particularly in his big self-loathing monologue; her reaction shots to him are very moving. He's game, as are Tony Curtis and Noel Coward in cameos, and there's real wit in the Axelrod screenplay. If only the average comedy released today could have a tenth of the style or flair in this "flop" of Hollywood's later golden era!

    5-0 out of 5 stars No matter what people say, it's the BEST
    To Audrey Hepburn fans everywhere, this is a must see and must have. The script is hilarious ("Oh, Maurice, I'm like so happy for you" and "I'm not that kind of a girl. Oh dear, maybe I am that kind of a girl!") Audrey Hepburn shines in this movie, and William Holden plays the drunken, funny movie writer. No matter how bad the reviews of the famous people may be, this is a terrific movie. It made my laugh so hard I cried. And belive me, you won't want to miss when Audrey Hepburn's drunk and she's making up this story involving planes, horses, beaches, vampires, bats.... Well, I can't give it all away. See this one. Better yet, buy it. It's definately worth it.

    1-0 out of 5 stars WHAT A SHAME I DIDN'T READ ALL OF THE REVIEWS FIRST!
    HAD I READ ALL REVIEWS, I WOULD HAVE FOUND OUT THE TRUTH ABOUT THIS FILM. THE 5-STARS REVIEWS ARE SIMPLY NONSENSE, THEY DON'T GIVE YOU AN ACCURATE FEELING FOR THE MOVIE. THE 1-STARS - NOW THOSE REALLY KNOW WHAT THEY ARE TALKING ABOUT! THEY KNOW A STINKER WHEN THEY SEE ONE AND ARE NOT AFRAID TO SAY SO.
    I AM SELLING ONE OF THESE "PARIS... USED FILMS AND I HAVE TO BE HONEST, I HAVE TO SAY THE TRUTH - SO BE FOREWARNED! THIS FILM IS BAD, IT IS NOT ENTERTAINING AND THERE IS NO PLOT OR CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT OR ANYTHING REDEEMING ABOUT THIS FILM.
    THE DESCRIPTION OF THE MOVIE OUTSIDE OF IT'S BOX IS REALLY A WARNING. IT TELLS YOU HOW THE MOVIE HAVE SUCH BEAUTIFUL SCENERY OF PARIS. WELL- THAT'S A WAY TO TELL YOU THAT THIS IS ALL THIS MOVIE HAS IN IT THAT COULD BE OF POSSIBLE INTEREST. GOOD LUCK!

    IF YOU BUY THIS FILM, DON'T SAY I DIDN'T WARN YOU.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Oh my!
    I was so dissapointed!
    I kept watching just thinking it would get better.
    WRONG!
    Don't waste your time. This is painful!

    5-0 out of 5 stars This One's A Sizzler!
    'Paris When It Sizzles' is a funny, light-hearted masterpiece that is made even better by the two brilliant stars, Audrey Hepburn and William Holden.

    Holden plays a famous writer who hires Hepburn to be his typist. But she is not too pleased when he reveals to her that he has not written anything yet, or even thought about the story line! So with only two days to get the script finished, the couple set about coming up with a plot, adding romance, twists, humour, switches, switches on switches, and switches on switches on switches!

    The script is then brought to life by the imagination of Holden and Hepburn. With Holden playing the main man, and Hepburn playing the main girl. And also other roles played by Tony Curtis, and a cameo from Audrey's husband at the time Mel Ferrer.

    This is an enjoyable film that won't leave you asking any questions. It is one Hepburn and Holden's best. Definitely not one to miss. ... Read more


    4. Bell, Book and Candle
    Director: Richard Quine
    list price: $24.95
    our price: $19.96
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0767821556
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 2593
    Average Customer Review: 4.31 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (35)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Charming, colorful, quirky.....bewitching.
    Adapted from the stage comedy of the same name, Bell Book and Candle stars Jimmy Stewart and Kim Novak, fresh from their successful teaming in Hitchcock's Vertigo. Novak plays Gillian Holroyd, a genuine, bonafide witch who runs a south seas antiquities shop. Falling in love with her neighbor, publisher Sheperd Henderson (Stewart), Gillian casts a spell on him. With help from her aunt (Elsa Lanchester), she obliges him to dump his fiancee, and ex college rival, and rush to her side. All of this goes against the grain of Gillian's Endora-like mentor Mrs. DePass (Hermione Gingold), who does her best to counterract the love spell. Meanwhile, Gillian's wacky warlock brother Nicky (Jack Lemmon) courts disaster by coauthoring a book on black magic with Sidney Redlitch (Ernie Kovacs). Legend has it that a witch can neither cry or fall in love. If she falls in love, she will lose her powers....can you guess what happens?

    Rumor has it that this is the inspiration for the televisions series Bewitched. There are several striking, undeniable similarities. This film was released in 1958, and I find it just as enjoyable today as I'm sure it was then. Memorable performances by Novak as the icy-cool Gillian and Stewart in his last "romantic leading man" role drive the film. Jack Lemmon and Elsa Lanchester add a lot of quirky flavor as Gillian's spell casting family. Fast pacing, clever writing, great costumes and fabulous eye-popping technicolor make this a film worth watching over and over. It's sure to cast a spell on you too.

    4-0 out of 5 stars The Magical Ms. Novak
    "Bell, Book and Candle" ( BBC ) is a very pleasant comedy, given an enormous boost from a formidable cast. In fact, much of my four-star rating is based on the actors involved, and their performances. Notwithstanding many glowing reviews, this is not a classic film and all of the key actors have made better movies.

    I understand that BBC is based on a play. I hope that the stage version also had a strong cast, because the plot is really very slight. Jimmy Stewart is a book publisher who doesn't know that his apartment building is inhabited by a couple of witches played by the gorgeous Kim Novak and her nosy "aunt", Elsa Lanchester. When Kim finds that she is attracted to Jimmy, and discovers that his fiancee is a nasty former school mate, she decides to seduce him. Don't worry Mom and Dad--this is 1958--the "seduction" is totally "PG". We also meet Kim's "warlock" brother in a local night club--a bongo-playing Jack Lemmon, as droll as ever. Then we have Ernie Kovacs as an author with a big interest in witchcraft and booze, not necessarily in that order ! Such a shame that Mr. Kovacs passed away at an early age--a major loss for film and television comedy. Finally, as the "grande dame" of witches, Hermione Gingold steals scenes in her gloriously theatrical way.

    I'm convinced that Jimmy Stewart could have read a telephone book for two hours, and still be watchable and entertaining. His character is required to look befuddled, perplexed, indignant and incredulous--qualities that Mr. Stewart could raise to an art form. He also has a number of scenes where he is "required" to kiss Ms. Novak passionately--and to think he got paid for this as well ? !

    Many beautiful women became movie stars in the 50s--Marilyn Monroe is a legend--Elizabeth Taylor--Ava Gardner--Rhonda Fleming--Grace Kelly--it's a long list. For this reviewer though, Kim Novak was the most stunning woman on screen. In this film--and others--her presence is electric. Jimmy Stewart doesn't have a chance ! I should add that Ms. Novak was a recent guest on "Larry King Live"--yes, guys--she is still a knockout !

    The DVD is nice, rather than outstanding--the colours exhibit some haziness here and there--mono sound, of course. This is not a great film, but if you want to spend a couple of pleasant, undemanding hours with this delightful cast--Stewart, Lemmon, Kovacs, Lanchester, Gingold and the truly magical Ms. Novak--you will not be disappointed.

    3-0 out of 5 stars An Entertainment
    James Stewart and Kim Novak star in this movie about a publisher (Stewart) who crosses paths with a witch (Novak) who is looking for some excitement. There's nothing serious about this film but it is great fun to watch two good actors with chemistry at work. Though the film was release in the late 1950's, the set and some of the language definitely lets you know that the 1960's aren't far away. If you're looking for some lite entertainment and something different, give Bell, Book and Candle a try.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Kim Novak Enchants in this Bewitching Romantic Comedy
    Kim Novac is wonderful as the 'good witch' falling in love with mortal James Stewart. The special treat with this film is that there is a complete 'underground society' (literally) of witches and warlocks, of whom we get to know Elsa Lanchester and Jack Lemon, both recommending Kim Novak quickly forget her romance with the mortal man.

    This film is a visual feast with some tidbits of 1950s Jazz music in the score. Complete with black cat, spell-book and magic tricks. Who can blame Jimmy Stewart for falling for Kim Novak's spell? Don't miss this bewitching piece of light entertainment!*****

    5-0 out of 5 stars Love this movie!!!
    Jimmy Stewart, Kim Novak, and an beautiful cat.....I absolutely love this movie. It is usually shown on television around Christmas time, and I have watched it every year since I discovered it. I'm so glad to see it is out on DVD! I'm going to purchase it right now! Don't miss this one! ... Read more


    5. How to Murder Your Wife
    Director: Richard Quine
    list price: $19.98
    our price: $17.98
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00006FDAW
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 7250
    Average Customer Review: 4.56 out of 5 stars
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    Amazon.com

    "Being married is the normal way to live... isn't it?" The note of doubt at the end of that statement is fully exploited in How to Murder Your Wife (1965), a barbed piece of war-between-the-sexes comedy. Cartoonist Jack Lemmon, an exponent of the Playboy philosophy, lives in the ultimate swinging bachelor townhouse ("Everything masculine and perfect," manservant Terry-Thomas says approvingly) until a drunken evening leads to marriage with an Italian bombshell (Virna Lisi). What to do? The whole movie seems to exist in order to arrive at Lemmon's clever courtroom oration in the final half-hour, which is tartly funny if datedly misogynistic: he unleashes a male fantasy of trashing the gray-flannel suit and late-model station wagon for Hefneresque freedom. The wheel-spinning of the early reels is curious coming from screenwriter George Axelrod, usually a reliable satirist. He had better hours than this, notably in Breakfast at Tiffany's and Lord Love a Duck. --Robert Horton ... Read more

    Reviews (16)

    3-0 out of 5 stars A fun movie; nothing too serious; 3 1/2 stars
    If you like Jack Lemmon, this is a fun movie. If you do not, then it's an average film.

    The sexy italian blonde looks much better on the screen than on this cover. In fact, there are a lot of good looking women in this movie so that's a plus for men so inclined.

    Story follows a cartoonist who ends up marrying an Italian immigrant girl who seduced him during a bachelor party after she jumped out of a cake. Her eyes are played out as being magical.

    Sort of funny . . . cute plot . . . a few good twists. Interesting court scene.

    I won't spoil the ending.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Not what you'd expect
    This is one of those films that start out seeming to be about one thing, but turn out at the end to be about something else entirely. Jack Lemmon is a confirmed (?) bachelor, living in a town house with his valet, Terry-Thomas, when one morning, after a liquor-soaked bachelor party for a friend the night before, he wakes to find himself married (gulp) to the dazzlingly beautiful Virna Lisi. Trapped in a no-win situation, he cooks up a plot for her murder (only on paper, of course); but, when she disappears, he finds himself on trial for her actual murder. One of the great comedic courtroom scenes follows. When the [spoiler] at the end of the film, you realized that you've been duped -- the film, which seemed to be about the joys of woman-hating, turns out to be about one of the great themes of cinema - "love conquers all". Eddie Mayehoff and Claire Trevor are marvelous in supporing roles.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A guy thing...and loads of fun...
    In our PC society, I can still look back and grin affecionately, considering that this film was made at a time when "battle-of-the-sexes" humor was at a peak (Doris Day, anyone?) Lemmon's a natural, and Terry-Thomas actually steals the film for that reason. Fairly formulaic, the men are made to look more idiotic than the women, though if anyone wants to take issue, check out Claire Trevor's manipulative harpee witch. Virna Lisi is, indeed, stunningly gorgeous, and very endearing. This is a "nice" movie; not a great one, nor one that lives on in history. It has Lemmon, Terry-Thomas, Lisi, Trevor, Eddie Mayehoff (a riot), and should be taken for exactly what it is: a fun, mindless romp that entertains. Lighten up. I still think this should've been nominated for Sound Effects...I never forgot the "Gloppita-gloppita" machine. Don't judge; enjoy!

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Good-natured Sanity of Satire
    There is absolutely nothing like good-natured satire for escape from the pressures of the workaday world, which insists on everyone being reasonable and restrained in their ire toward others. In the genre of high satire, "How to Murder Your Wife" takes one poke after another at the guys AND their ladies, both of whose unrealistic expectations toward one another periodically drive each other to the brink of ... could it be MURDER? This is STRICTLY for laughs -- and of course, paradoxically the best laughs come when a good moral results from the logical playing out of the perfectly orchestrated tomfoolery in this classic film.

    We need satire -- much more than we think -- to remain good-natured, even sane. It alone gives us the perspective to let down our self-righteous hair and laugh at ourselves. One is only certain that he has a friend when his friend isn't afraid to insult him once in awhile! Remember the profound psychological function of the Medieval court jester, alone of the King's subjects who could ridicule the King mercilessly ... and so keep him human in aspect. The Marx Brothers knew themselves to be Society's collective court jesters with a holy mission to insult the upper classes, who were taking themselves so perilously seriously in the '20s and '30s.

    So, may our insecurities of male and female social prerogatives vanish in a cloud of wholesome laughter in this ingenious stroke of good will -- and may we benefit from more and more good satire in future productions. For it is the perfect irony of this film that its theme is actually the passionate pursuit of harmony between the sexes, and not their mutual demise. Ah, give us a second helping of wit, Sir Terry Thomas!

    5-0 out of 5 stars It's a men's joke!
    Stanley Ford (Jack Lemmon) is a popular cartoonist. 463 newspapers buy "The adventures of Bash Brannigan" because they know their author draws on real-life experience. His lawyer Harold (Eddie Mayehoff) gives free vent to his moral indignation: "pornography! violence! sadism!" but Stanley remains complacent: " I never asked Bash to do anything I haven't done myself". He is immune to Harold's sermon who can't wait to see him henpecked. But Stanley has perfected the skill of lying in a woman's arms without falling in her hands. He owns a luxurious townhouse in New York and Charles (Terry-Thomas), his distinguished and stuck-up butler (He calls himself "Mr. Ford's man") runs the household, awakes him, escorts him to the shower, weighs him out (160 pounds) and prepares healthy meals. In short: Stanley leads the life that readers of the "Playboy magazine" dream of.

    One day he goes to a friend's wedding (The bride forgot her shoes in Stanley's bedroom), but the wedding he celebrates instead is his own: He wakes up with a hangover and discovers that he married the girl who jumped out of the wedding cake (Virna Lisi). Since the new Mrs. Ford has assets (she took part in a beauty contest) he tries to break the news gently to her: he wants a divorce...Mrs. Ford is amused to see his pantomime: She does not understand one word because she comes from Italy...Harold is delighted and lists Stanley's obligations:"You got to make a new will...health check...insurance". Harold's wife Edna (Claire Trevor) informs Mrs. Ford that she is entitled to a mink-coat, a pet-dog and her husband's credit card. Charles has dark forebodings. The foundations of his cosmic system are shaken when his new lady takes possession of her house. Duel in the kitchen: Charles is calories-conscíous, Mrs. Ford prepares lasagne-souffle with a pound of butter. Both wait for their lord and master to pass his judgment. Stanley settles on the souffle - and forfeits his butler.

    Stanley's comic-strip hero follows his creator's example: "Yes (Gulp)" says the bridegroom. "He He" says the bride. Mrs. Ford's qualities do not miss their fire. Still. Stanley's home becomes a boudoir. He develops a paunch - his appetite is good. She makes a do-it-yourselfer out of him and a sissy and she controls his liquor-ration. Goaded by Edna she inspects her husband in his no-ladies-allowed-club and startles some half-naked men in the sauna. Her contrition comes too late: Stanley decides to free not himself but his comic-strip hero from the manacles of matrimony. He smuggles the prototype of an ecstasy-pill in his wife's drink. Brrrp! and she is dancing on the table. Blaaap! and he drags her off on his shoulder. Yes, and then he commits his "murder": He throws a dummy in the gloppeta-machine and buries it in cement. His wife sees his new Bash Brannigan cartoon and gathers that he is longing for her death...

    A deeply moving moment all the more effective because it comes unexpected. This film is the best sex-comedy in a series that started 1959 with PILLOW TALK and ended 1965 with THE GREAT RACE. These films were demonised and nagged to death by calamity-howlers who could not endure the sight of a happy audience. I was never offended by the alleged "sexism" - why shouldn't women be capable to take a men's joke with humor? The plot is a yarn, the courtroom scene a classic, the score Neil Hefti's best and the acting fantastic. This is the one film where Jack Lemmon has the opportunity to play the playboy - and he does so with boundless relish. Irrepressible, undaunted and with his unmistakable sense of humor. And he did all the stunts himself! Virna Lisi is irresistible as his fond appendage who coddles her husband until he becomes a softie. The only objectionable point is the mistreatment of sympathetic Claire Trevor (STAGECOACH, KEY LARGO). But, as Orson Welles once said: "Husbands should revolt from time to time. Even the best circus-number becomes boring if the beast is too tame". ... Read more


    6. Crime Story - Season Two
    Director: Gary Sinise, Bill Duke, Alan Myerson, John Nicolella, James A. Contner, Francis Delia, James Quinn, Mark Rosner, Jan Eliasberg, Paul Krasny, David Jackson, Jeff Stein, Aaron Lipstadt, Bobby Roth, Mario DiLeo, Eugene Corr, Michael Mann, Colin Bucksey, Abel Ferrara, Leon Ichaso
    list price: $39.98
    our price: $27.99
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    Asin: B0007WQH3A
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 11167
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    7. National Lampoon's Loaded Weapon 1
    Director: Gene Quintano
    list price: $14.98
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    Asin: B000031EFZ
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 7596
    Average Customer Review: 4.16 out of 5 stars
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    Description

    Two trigger-happy cops try to stop the distribution of mind-rotting Wilderness Girl cookies. Starring Emilio Estevez, Kathy Ireland and Samuel L. Jackson. ... Read more

    Reviews (37)

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Typical Lampoon Movie!
    Hilarious from start to finish, this movie lampoons pretty much any action movie which includes Lethal Weapon, Die Hard, Basic Instinct, Silence of the Lambs, and even Wayne's World. It tells the story of detectives Colt and Luger two miss-matched detectives that come together to solve the murdering of Luger's old partener. Colt and Luger are played hilariously by Emilio Estevez (Colt) and Samuel L. Jackson (Luger). Other hilarious preformances come from the two villians, Tim Curry and William Shatner, also from Jon Lovitz. The cameos are countless. They include Whoppi Goldberg, Bruce Willis, Charlie Sheen, Phil Hartman, Corey Feldman, Paul Gleason, F Murray Abraham, and Erik Estrada. You will have to watch the movie more than once to catch all of the jokes and puns.The movie pretty much mocks Lethal Weapon, with the buddy-cop theme. My favorite Lampoon movie, this is one you don't want to miss!

    4-0 out of 5 stars One of my favorite spoofs. Incredibly underrated!
    I'm not a huge fan of slapstick spoofs. I love "Airplane!" and the "Naked Gun" films, but it's not my favorite genre.

    Ironic, then, that I find most spoof movies enjoyable, at the very least, because they're all really, really stupid. There's more quality in "Airplane!" than, say, "Hot Shots!", but both films are enjoyable, because you have to do absolutely no thinking whatsoever. All you have to do is laugh a few times. And with the millions of jokes (okay, hundreds) per film, you're sure to find at least a handful of things worth laughing at.

    "National Lampoon's Loaded Weapon 1" is one of my favorite spoof flicks. Why? It's stupid, silly, funny, and one of the most enjoyable films available to see. Yeah, it's stupid, like I already said. But it's loads of fun, too. And I don't care if critics bashed it when it came out -- it's still a very fun movie.

    Everything gets lampooned in this: "Lethal Weapon" to "Die Hard" to "Silence of the Lambs" to "CHiPs." And, alongside "It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World"; "Austin Powers in Goldmember"; and "The Player," it has some of the most cameos/stars to date. Get this: Emilio Estevez, Samuel L. Jackson, Tim Curry, Jon Lovitz, William Shatner, Denis Leary, Erik Estrada, Dr. Joyce Brothers, Bill Nunn, Kathy Ireland, Corey Feldman, J.T. Walsh, Paul Gleason, F. Murray Abraham, Bruce Willis, Phil Hartman (R.I.P.), Whoopi Goldberg, Charlie Sheen (Emilio's half-brother)...am I missing anyone? Mel Gibson, Danny Glover and Joe Pesci would have completed this cast. I wonder if they rejected cameos.

    Wes Luger (Jackson) has been assigned a new partner, the loose canon Jack Colt (Estevez), who lost his dog long ago and is now mentally unstable. Luger lost his partner (Goldberg), too, and the effects of the past often catch up with him, so far that he finds it impossible to fire a gun without shaking violently and spastic-like.

    General Mortars (Shatner) is planning a devious scheme of running drugs through a Girl Scout cookie-type company, and Colt and Luger try to thwart his plan and save the day before it's too late. Meanwhile, they come to appreciate each other -- while lampooning everything in sight.

    The most puzzling thing about "Loaded Weapon 1" is the fact that, if you look at most user comments on the Internet Movie Database, they're all quite positive. It has a low standing at 5.3 stars, yes, but the user reviews for the film are pretty decent. A lot of people found the film "funny for what it is." I do, too.

    Spoofing a spoof is kinda pathetic, I'll admit. "Lethal Weapon" always was more tongue-in-cheek comedy than anything else. Even as a hard action film it was always winking at the other films of its genre. "Wayne's World" isn't exactly a drama of epic proportions, either, come to think of it. Even "Basic Instinct" is a hard film to spoof, if you take a moment to reflect -- it's never exactly horribly serious. Just sleazy. (I won't ruin how "Loaded Weapon 1" pokes fun at the famous Sharon Stone interrogation scene.)

    Yet, in my honest opinion, "Loaded Weapon 1" does a pretty darn good job of spoofing everything in sight. Estevez is a good Riggs-type who pines for his lost dog (not a wife, mind you, but a dog). Jackson -- who's usually great -- is decent as the Murtaugh-type character, although he is shoved aside by the screenplay to make room for Estevez. (Whose brother was just as good in "Hot Shots!", although I think this is a funnier film.) Lovitz, hair bleached (impersonating Joe Pesci from the "Lethal Weapons"), comes across as an irritant sidekick who appears out of thin air only when the plot needs him -- which I suppose was the point. (Was "Loaded Weapon 1" assuming that Joe Pesci's Leo Getz character was an irritating co-star placed in the film as nothing more than an easy plot device? Probably.)

    And in one of the simplest -- but also one of the most effective -- scenes, we get the famous bathroom bomb sequence from "Lethal Weapon 2" told in an entirely fresh perspective. Here's how it goes: The door to Jackson's house is wide open. Estevez walks in and calls him. "I'm up here!" is the response. Estevez walks up the stairs, gets to the bathroom, opens the door, sees Jackson on the toilet and says, "What are you doing?" Safe to say, he's doing exactly what it looks like. His blunt reply is one of the highlights of the film. (Let's face it, that scene from "LW2" was destined to get poked fun at some time or another -- I'm just glad it got spoofed in this.)

    5-0 out of 5 stars A hilarious spoof of "Lethal Weapon"
    Emilio Estevez and Samuel L. Jackson are the Mel Gibson and Danny Glover of this film. There are spoof scenes from the Lethal Weapon trilogy and one from WAYNE'S WORLD. This filn was dircted by Gene Quintano who previously directed 1986's POLICE ACADEMY 3-Back In Training. This film reunites Quintano with Lance Kinsey. Kinsey was Lieutenant Proctor in many of the Police Academy sequels. Many people who have seen this film also saw THE BREAKFAST CLUB,THE MIGHTY DUCKS films,STAKEOUT,ANOTHER STAKEOUT(Estevez's other films),and PULP FICTION,one of Jackson's later films. Also many people who have seen this film also saw movies that Estevez's brother Charlie Sheen starred in.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Funny !
    I first saw this movie was I was ~ 14 .
    Now I'm 20 and I still love it - mostly because of Samuel Jackson and that guy with fantastic german (?) "aññent" .
    "Where is the micGrofilm , mr. Colt ?" ....
    If you like comedies and parodies - that's a great choice !

    4-0 out of 5 stars Great Comedy
    John in his reveiw here has just said exactly what i was going to say! So I dont need to review this myself, he's already done it for me, word for word!

    I will add however, if you happen to own this great comedy spoof/parody movie, you might be intrested to know there is a couple of eggs hidden on the DVD! If you go to the biographys and choose Samula L.Jacksons, as you flick through the pages, you will notice some of his movies have gold bars around them? You can select those bars, and click ok and watch the trailers to some of S.L.J's movies!

    My words on this movie that John didnt add. If your into comedy spoofs like "naked gun" "airplane" "kentucky freid movie" "spy hard" "hot shots" "silence of the hams" and movies of that type of goofy parodying, then you will love this movie! See Johns reveiw for what movies get parodied ... Read more


    8. Law & Order - Special Victims Unit - The Premiere Episode
    Director: Chad Lowe, David Hugh Jones, David Platt (III), Steve Wertimer, Joyce Chopra, Jud Taylor, Michael Zinberg, Alexander Cassini, Clark Johnson, Steve Shill, Rick Rosenthal, Peter Medak, Darnell Martin, Michael Fields, Juan José Campanella, Alan Metzger, Constantine Makris, Guy Norman Bee, Jean de Segonzac, James Quinn
    list price: $19.98
    our price: $17.98
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00005JMAE
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 16515
    Average Customer Review: 2.3 out of 5 stars
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    Amazon.com

    Originally called Sex Crimes, executive producer Dick Wolf wisely opted for something less lurid when the second in the inexhaustible Law & Order franchise hit the air in 1999. Still, as the opening voiceover makes clear, the "sexually based offenses" investigated by New York's Special Victims Unit can be "especially heinous." Wolf penned series premier "Payback," which sets the scene, but not the tone. It's a lively, if uneasy mix between horror (rape) and comedy (risqué banter). As the first season progressed, humor would be written out altogether (leaving Richard Belzer's Homicide-derived John Munch with increasingly less to do), and less emphasis would be placed on the home lives of this "elite squad of dedicated detectives." Mostly, "Payback" introduces us to the unit, centering around partners Olivia Benton (Mariska Hargitay) and Elliot Stabler (Christopher Meloni). For two people with so little in common, they make a terrific team--arguably one of TV's best. Stabler is married with four children; Benton is single and her closest relationship is with her mother (Elizabeth Ashley). While Stabler can get a little rough with suspects, Benton tends to over-empathize with the victims. They report to the no-nonsense Captain Cragen (Law & Order vet Dann Florek). Like the parent program's Lenny Briscoe, he's a recovering alcoholic. Dean Winters and Michelle Hurd round out the rock-solid cast. --Kathleen C. Fennessy ... Read more

    Reviews (10)

    1-0 out of 5 stars Not Worth Getting
    Don't get me wrong. This episode was great but not worth getting all by itself. If you pay twice as much, you get 22 episodes instead of just the one. This episode is included in the set. I just wish there was an episode introducing all the characters to each other instead of introducing the audience to the characters all at once. I was disappointed that there wasn't a 2-hour beginning like most series. Oh well. Don't bother with this dvd. GET THE SET!!!!!!

    3-0 out of 5 stars A No-Brainer
    Why am I even reviewing this? I suppose it's just to verify with you, reader, that you will now be clicking over to SVU's first season DVD release. 3 stars is generous, but I think justified. One must take into account the material AS WELL AS the packaging of the product (It's a 5-star program in a 1-star package).

    Pro - strong enough concept to survive on its own away from the original Law and Order series (material).
    Con - you would be officially declared an idiot to buy one episode for about a third of the price of the entire first season (of which there are approximately 20 X as many episodes).

    Let's break that down for all ye non-rocket-scientists out there. It would take over 50 million bowls of your cereal...err...umm... I mean, buying only three independent episodes of SVU (which mercifully you can't, and the producers gave the consumers' brains atleast SOME credit) would have bought you the entire first season (now going for roughly $50), a net loss of, again, roughly 20 episodes (I've done some rounding for the non-rocket-scientists).

    A quick justification for the 3 stars -

    A) SVU, like the original Law And Order, has so much going on, you'll ALWAYS pick oodles up upon subsequent viewings (the rewind button can offer you everything that Munch was saying that you just sort of glossed over the first time).... thus, purchasing one episode won't REALLY give you just 45 minutes of something to watch.

    B) This is especially true, as they've packed those infamous "DVD extras" in - the original "Everybody's favorite Bag Man" pilot, as well as some interesting interviews and extra footage (the squad room walk-through) keep "Payback" from feeling lonely.

    2-0 out of 5 stars Real fans should boycott these piecemeal relaease
    Another bad DVD release. It looks like a crude attempt to extract as much revenue as possible from large base of loyal fans. Some reviewers who wax lyrical over the 'special' interview features and "insight into the show" in this single episode DVD either work for the publisher or miss the point that any of these items could have been included in a 'full season' release. This piecemeal approach is frustrating for real fans of the series who, to date, have seen only one complete season released. I for one will protest with my wallet. It stays shut until the complete seasons are released.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Why buy one episode?
    Law and Order is on television most nights of the week. Why buy one episode on DVD. I did not buy this one, and would like to add to the previous comments stating a season box set release is necessary and in demand! Come on executives of Universal, we're waiting!

    3-0 out of 5 stars More, please!
    I gave this DVD 3 stars because I have seen this episode - it is terrific. However, I will not be shelling out [money] for 1 episode... I'll be saving it to put it towards the purchase of the entire 1st season on DVD, when and if that is released! Gimme a break, Universal! ... Read more


    9. My Sister Eileen
    Director: Richard Quine
    list price: $19.94
    our price: $14.95
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    Asin: B00070HK38
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 3138
    Average Customer Review: 4.33 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (6)

    5-0 out of 5 stars A charming, screwball musical
    Most folks will pay attention to this film becuase it's an early piece by choreographer Bob Fosse -- but it is a fun bit of froth that easily stands on its own. An absolutely delightful musical comedy, starring Betty Garrett as a smart smalltown girl determined to make it in New York City. She moves there with her with her glamourous, ditzy sister Eileen, whose good looks open more doors than do Garrett's brains and moxie. A nice film about struggling to get ahead in the Big Apple, with a script that takes its time and several exuberently goofy dance numbers, gleefully choreographed by a young Bob Fosse, who also plays one of the sister's avid suitors. The penultimate dance scene is side-splittingly hilarious, featuring a swarm of recently disembarked Cuban sailors on the prowl for American women, who form an inexhaustable conga line that snakes chaotically through the gal's tiny apartment. Thoroughly entertaining... a great, lighthearted film with some fabulous acting and bright, winning performances by all involved.

    4-0 out of 5 stars A Nice Musical Comedy With a Young Bob Fosse
    "My Sister Eileen" was Fosse's first official assignment as a film choreographer. He had already co-choreographed his dances for three musicals he made at MGM but didn't get any credit for it.
    This film offers a rare chance to see him perform his own steps in front of the camera. He wasn't just a legendary Broadway director and choreographer, he was also a brilliant and nimble dancer with a sweet singing voice. His early stuff was influenced by Gene Kelly, Fred Astaire and Jack Cole, so don't expect the small intricate dancing with bowler hats that became his trademark.
    Fosse is featured in three numbers: the quartet "Give Me A Band and My Baby", which is pure fun, the romantic ballroom routine "There's Nothing Like Love" where he partners "Psycho"'s Janet Leigh, and the explosive "Alley Dance" in which he competes with one of the best yet underrated dancers of Hollywood's Golden Age: the versatile Tommy Rall. The number shows a couple of early Fosse favorites such as the "Steam Heat" hat trick, cartwheel jumps and somersaults.
    The rest of the cast is also quite remarkable: Betty Garrett is adorable with her dead-pan humour and Janet Leigh is simply sweet as Darlin' Eileen. And if you ever wanted to hear Jack Lemmon sing, here's your chance.
    Director Richard Quine and young Blake Edwards wrote a rather unspectacular screenplay. Jule Styne and Leo Robin did a decent job with the songs but I definitely prefer Leonard Bernstein's "Wonderful Town".
    "My Sister Eileen" is a nice little musical comedy. It's ideal to cheer yourself up on a dark and rainy evening.
    By the way, this film isn't presented in its original Cinemascope format. The video version was slightly formatted. Well, let's hope for the DVD release.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Entertaining Classic!
    What a great movie! It is refreshing to see so much energy brought to the silver screen. The casting makes this movie! It has something for everyone: dancing, singing, funny misunderstandings, apartment problems and much more. This movie provides the entire family with good clean entertainment which is almost extinct in today's Hollywood. Jack Lemmon is wonderful opposite Betty Garrett. Janet Leigh also does a superb job as the sister with everything!

    4-0 out of 5 stars Good Star Vehicle
    Although the first version,starring Rosalind Russell and Janet Blair,is by far superior,this musical version with Janet Leigh and Betty Garrett as the two sisters in Greenwich Village is quite a good romp. Bob Fosse and Jack Lemmon (in a rare musical role )add the needed chemistry to make the girls sparkle. The story was later musicalized on Broadway as 'Wonderful Town',which again starred Rosalind Russell as Ruth Sherwood,and won a Tony for her work.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Watching a young Bob Fosse dance is incredible
    A great cast with Jack Lemon and Betty Garrett doing a great job together and Bob Fosse showing why he is among the greatest dancers of our time. ... Read more


    10. The Solid Gold Cadillac
    Director: Richard Quine
    list price: $19.94
    our price: $17.95
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    Asin: B0000CABBJ
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 10869
    Average Customer Review: 3.71 out of 5 stars
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    Description

    Judy Holliday shines as an idealistic stockholder who uncovers corruption at the top rung of a major corporation in this lighthearted romantic comedy. 1957 Academy Award® Winner for Best Costume Design! ... Read more

    Reviews (7)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Cute film with top cast
    Solid Gold Cadillac is a wonderful example of 1950's comedies. It was very well cast, not only Judy Holliday, but the rest of the supporting cast was great. The script was sharp and funny. It had funny, well-written characters. The film moves well. It's wholesome, clean fun with a nice message and a nice ending.

    It is one of the few films made by the wonderful Judy Holliday. Though typecast as the "dumb blonde" in most productions, such as this one, she brings an aura or something that makes the screen light up when she's on it like you're seeing something special. You are. When she's not on screen, you miss her. I don't know if it's her timing, or facial expressions, or what, but this woman really had it. I guess the trade off for her brief film career is that she really did not appear in any "bad" productions and otherwise was afforded top scripts with top directors and co-stars.

    I thought this transfer was lovely, the film really looked sharp and the whites and blacks were almost new-looking. The color sequence at the end was nice.

    This is by no means the best/top of the 1950's as far as comedies go, but it's a nice example of a solid, quality production that is a joy to watch. If you are not a fan of 50's movies or otherwise don't enjoy/appreciate older movies or particular cast members here, you will probably find this dull. Comedies have changed a lot over the years, what was funny then, some may not find interesting or enjoyable now. If you're not sure, watch Judy Holliday's "Born Yesterday" before viewing this. If you enjoy that and liked Miss Holliday, then give this a try.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Woman changes stockholder business. Special color scenes.
    Another Judy Holliday film. This one with Paul Douglas, Fred Clark, Arthur O'Connell and narration by George Burns. Judy Holliday (as "Laura Partridge") attends a stockholder's meeting. The meeting goes by too routinely. They almost neglect to see the waving hand of Miss Holliday. Naturally being a stockholder herself, she has a question to ask, before they vote for Treasurer. She does ask some very simple, honest questions, but these white-collar showboats just can't give her an honest answer without the push-off or feeding their face. Well, this smart blonde woman makes a motion and since she does own 10 shares, she would like to form a stockholders committee of her own to discuss the "too big" salaries of the showboats. She does get involved and this woman will make some unselfish changes. Watch the business and the fun begin. The ending of the film changes to color.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Almost Solid Gold
    To begin with, I wish these so-called reviewers would stop giving away the plots of the movies they extol! That said, this is a rare case (the 1st of its kind?) of a movie being better than the play it was based on. The general framework was of course the same, but in the play Judy Holliday's part was taken by Josephine Hull, a very funny little old lady (who also scored both on Bway and on the screen in "Harvey" and "Arsenic and Old Lace," to name the only 2 that I know of), and the love interest on stage was only hinted at around the edges, it blossomed in the film. One problem, there simply were no witty lines, either in the play or the movie. This is odd for Kaufman (though the play was produced in 1953, very late in his career), but about par for Burrows (early in his career). But still it was clever and interesting, the play had more structure than the movie (typical of Kaufman), but the movie did things with the plot that were suggested but left undone in the play, which surprised me very much and made me wonder about Kaufman. Also the flick left out all the naughty words which I'm sure Hull barked out with delicious abandon! (Note: Kaufman co-wrote the play, Burrows adapted it for the screen.) This I think was more a sit-com than an actually witty Kaufman comedy. And finally, Judy Holliday did NOT play a "dumb blonde"! She only did that in "Born Yesterday."

    4-0 out of 5 stars Fine Comedic Vehicle for Ms. Holliday.
    Although older film buffs remember her fondly, I suspect that Judy Holliday is not as familiar to classic cinema fans today as she should be. She was a beautiful, charming actress who sparkled in comedy roles. While her career took off in the late 40s, it was during the 50s that she made her most famous films, although the number of movies were relatively few. She was caught up in the communist witch-hunts of the 50s, which--to Hollywood's disgrace--had an impact on her film career, and the number of quality roles offered. She was not the only victim during those dark days. By the 60s, she was seriously ill, and succumbed to breast cancer, at age 44.

    "The Solid Gold Cadillac" gave Ms. Holliday one of her best roles. As a minor shareholder in a major company, her character asks some simple, but pointed questions at a stock-holders' meeting that lead to various complications for a very greedy, dishonest and unethical Board of Directors, played by John Williams ( smarmy and unscrupulous ), Fred Clark ( a two-faced bully ) and Ray Collins ( indignant and crooked ). She also becomes involved with the founder of the company, played by Paul Douglas, a decent man with too much integrity for those sharks on the Board. The whole cast is excellent, and the plot is consistently amusing.

    I found the main theme of this film to be just as relevant today. We are living in an era of high-profile corporate scandal ( eg. Enron, Hollinger, the list goes on and on ). When these situations are investigated, what is found at the bottom ? Nothing but pure, unadulterated greed. The more things change, etc. Actually, I could see "The Solid Gold Cadillac" being updated today--technology has changed, the "numbers" are a lot bigger--but good old-fashioned greed is still around, big-time ! I could see one of our current actresses, with a flair for comedy, having a big hit with this "remake". I nominate Sandra Bullock--hey Sandy--you'd be terrific !

    In the mean time, this is a delightful DVD--nice picture, mono sound, of course, and a fine souvenir of Judy Holliday--a star who shone too briefly, but very brightly.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Holiday Showcase
    Hollywood has had a long tradition of dumb blonde performers who could be counted on to produce more than their share of belly-laughs. None, however, was more expert at the trade than Judy Holiday whose untimely death robbed filmdom of one of its most accomplished comediennes. This movie, along with Born Yesterday, is among her very best, and should not be missed.

    Film fans may want to note that there's a direct line of descent from Holiday in this movie to Reese Witherspoon in the recent megahit Legally Blonde. Like Witherspoon's character in Blonde, everyone underestimates Holiday's Laura Partridge and with similarly devastating results. In both cases, it's that sweetly scatterbrained exterior that conceals a shrewd and determined inner woman, a combination which proves deadly for those who would happily exploit them. Here, it's the Board of a soulless corporation ( just then emerging from the 50's decade of growth) that falls into Holiday's trap with hilarious results. The Board itself is a stellar lineup of character actors: from the curmudgeonly Fred Clark, to the cultured John Williams, to the scheming Ray Collins, all familiar faces from the Late Late Show and pompously perfect targets for a womanly comeuppance. Holiday's pixilated exchanges with these smugly officious scofflaws are minor gems.

    Those interested in charting the rise of the women's movement might also note an important contrast between the two films. Holiday's character, for all her wiles and willpower, must eventually succumb in typical 50's fashion to her stronger male half as played by the always redoubtable Paul Douglas. On the other hand, Witherspoon's post-Gloria Steinam character discovers a hidden self-sufficiency that requires no Douglas counterpart, producing a typically 90's note of feminist triumph. But these are merely incidental reflections on an underrated movie that truly sparkles because of the comedic lustre of its star, the unforgettable Judy Holiday, in a role that suits her to the proverbial T. ... Read more


    11. Strangers When We Meet
    Director: Richard Quine
    list price: $19.94
    our price: $17.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00070HK3I
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 5877
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (2)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Evocative Adult Drama from 1960
    "Adult" drama charting marital infidelity and heavy drinking in the seemingly idyllic world of the suburbs was a very popular subject for films and novels in the late 50's and early 60's.Looking at the films now is almost like stepping into another world.For people who lived at the time, "Strangers When We Meet" may appear evocative, for others, dated.The performances are good with a particularly nice one by Walter Matthau when he was still playing villains and Ernie Kovacs playing it straight.The score by George Duning is memorable.The disk has few extras.There is a choice of English or Japanese subtitles as well as some trailers from other films but not this one including Gilda and You Were Never Lovelier. There are no commentaries or featurettes.Chapter breaks are well-placed.The print looks a bit faded but not so bad as some other films from the period.Otherwise the print shows few defects.The menu page shows Kim Novak and Kirk Douglas standing in front of a NY skyline though the film is set in southern California.Richard Quine's light touch seems to suit the Evan Hunter screenplay well.Hunter adapted his own novel.The story is entertaining, the cast and direction are good, and film looks good but may seem a bit inscrutable to younger audiences.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Husbands, Wives, and Lovers
    After World War II movies became more frank in subject matter. This was in part due to the changing mores of the returning vets and the women they came home to. After the horrors of war things would never be the same for them or for Hollywood.The other factor was the slow demise over the 50's of the studio system and the rise of television as a threat to the box office. The censors began to relax and allowed more adult themes to be presented on the big screen. By the early 1960's movies were well on there way to growing up. Taboo subjects such as prostitution, homosexuality and adultery were now subjects Hollywood was now eagerly taking on.

    One of the more interesting and surprisingly un-judgmental of these films was the 1960 Colombia release, `Strangers When We Meet'. Produced by Kirk Douglas' company Bryna Productions and Richard Quinn Productions and taken from the novel by Evan Hunter the film is a fascinating look into the suburban lives of a Los Angeles architect, his wife and the other woman in his life.

    Kirk Douglas gives a fine, understated performance as the architect Larry Coe. It is a stark contrast to his epic Spartacus of the same year. At a cross roads in his life he is given the chance to build the kind of house he always wanted to for upcoming novelist Ernie Kovaks while his company wants him to go on doing the same dull work they expect. He fights for his chance to take the chance of a life time with the skill of a fine screen actor.

    As his wife, Barbara Rush is outstanding in one of her finest moments on screen. She is cold and withholding yet needy of her husbands love. Her finest moments come in her scenes with Douglas where they argue over their future and in her chilling confrontation with the lecherous Walter Matthauon a dark rainy afternoon.

    As Maggie Gault actress Kim Novak turns in a nuanced and deeply felt performance. She is a woman that men have been hunting down all her life. Her beauty is something that brings her only sorrow and despair though a string of meaningless affairs. Her husband seems to be the only man who has no interest in sleeping with her and though she does love he drives her away embarrassed by her open and honest desire for him. When Douglas says to her on their first meeting, "You're not so pretty." it throws her and intrigues her. Throughout the affair she embarks on with Douglas she is smart enough to know that this like all the others will ultimately lead nowhere. In the final frames of the film she is shown this very fact when faced with another leering man.

    Kim Novak is so cool and remote at times that it seems the perfect fit for her, the role of Maggie. She is the kind of natural actress that when left alone with her instincts and the eye of the camera she surprises the viewer with the dark emotions that live just beneath her lovely features. On scene among many where she shines is when she is confronted with her past and has to tell the truth to Douglas about it.

    The cinematography is wonderful to see in the widescreen aspect of this DVD and shows the great talent of cinematographer, Charles Lang who also shot such classics as `Charade' and "Some Like It Hot' and the stunning "One-Eyed Jacks".

    The score by George Dunning is the perfect meeting of the romantic and dramatic. It stands along side his classic scores for "Bell, Book, and Candle", "The World of Suzi Wong" and "Picnic."

    Jean Louis one of the top designers of costumes for actresses of the period turns in just enough suburban glamour to keep the ladies in the cast looking wonderful.

    Director Richard Quinn pulls it all together with his usual style. He presents us with not only a good drama but an interesting look at the suburban life of Los Angeles in 1960. The locations are memorable, the glamorous old Romanoff's restaurant, the stunning house that is built through the course of the film, and the beautiful beach at Malibu where the lovers rendezvous. This film stands along with "Suzi Wong," "Bell Book and Candle", and "How to Murder Your Wife" as some of his best work. The film holds up after forty five years as a fresh and timely look at the relationships between husbands and wives and lovers who are always "Strangers When We Meet."
    ... Read more


    12. Extreme Force
    Director: Michel Qissi
    list price: $19.98
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00005O5C1
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 50880
    Average Customer Review: 2 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (1)

    2-0 out of 5 stars Tong-Po: Back in Action?
    The energetic Hector Echavarria stars in this low-budget martial arts actioner which surprisingly has a lot going for it. He stars as Marcos De Santos, a Robin Hood style thief who wants to escape his life of crime and spend the rest of his days with his girlfriend. Problems arise when his partners talk him into doing one last job - to steal a priceless Mongolian artifact. Now, anyone with less than a minutes attention span will already guess that this a big con, and our hero De Santos is presumably left for dead. Quickly rescued by the owners of the stolen artifact and nursed back to good health, he is sent to get it back. Buddy-style antics are the order of the day as De Santos is partnered by a Mongolian bodyguard, and between the two of them they kick, punch and fight their way through 90 minutes of redneck beating, coconut crushing and major kickboxery mayhem!

    The cast are uniformally good, which is quite a shock for a film of this kind. Echavarria is one to watch, and one wonders what he could do with a bigger budget. Youssef Qissi (who portrays the main villain, and De Santos' nemesis) is great - an evil look and an equally good screen fighter to match. Playboy model Nikki Lemke turns up as the manipulative partner of De Santos, and she too is really good in her role (check out the camera, as it seems to be mesmerised by her never-ending legs!). Director and co-star Michel Qissi (Yeah, bad-movies fans rejoice! It's Tong-Po from the KICKBOXER movies) is great as the Mongolian bodyguard. He deadpans his way through all of his lines - and to his credit, he handles this movie very well behind the camera as well. The action scenes are well choreographed and the film has a sharp professional look that elevates it above many of its direct-to-video peers.

    Released in the UK (with an awful cover) under the shabby title EXTREME DRAGON (this review actually refers to that Third Millennium release), the movie bears no widescreen option or any extras to speak of. This is a shame as a short 'making-of' would have helped the package further. Not even a trailer? C'mon, this is DVD isn't it? Not VHS. I cannot speak for this US release, whether it will have any extras or anything to speak of, but for the movie alone - it is worth a looksee. If you are a fan of those old Kickboxer-type movies of the late 80s/early 90s or like your action with a little direct-to-video edge to it, then this could very well be for you. ... Read more


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