Monthly Film

May Film: Born to Win (1971)

  Born to Win 88 minutes | 1 December 1971 | United States ‘Born to Win is the grimly ironic title of this jet-black comedy about heroin addicts. George Segal plays Jay Jay, an ex-hairdresser who struggles to support his expensive drug habit. To avoid arrest, Jay Jay turns ‘narc’, informing on his fellow junkies. Eventually Jay Jay’s sense of self-hatred…

February Film: Zouzou (1934)

  Zouzou 85 minutes | 21 December 1934 | France ‘As children, Zouzou and Jean are paired in a traveling circus as twins: she’s dark, he’s light. After they’ve grown, he treats her as if she were his sister, but she’s in love with him. In Paris, he’s a music hall electrician, she’s a laundress who delivers clean underwear to…

October Film: At Midnight I’ll Take Your Soul (1964)

  At Midnight I’ll Take Your Soul (‘À Meia Noite Levarei Sua Alma’) 84 minutes | 9 November 1964 | Brazil ‘Early Brazilian horror film directed by and starring José Mojica Marins, who introduces his alter ego Zé do Caixão (Coffin Joe). A gravedigger prowls the city in search of a female to bear him a son.’ Director: José Mojica Marins Producers: Arildo Iruam,…

September Film: Bowery Blitzkrieg (1941)

  Bowery Blitzkrieg 62 minutes | 1 August 1941 | United States ‘While a cop steers a kid street-fighter away from being a public nuisance, a petty hoodlum leads a studious kid into a life of crime.’ Director: Wallace Fox Producer: Sam Katzman Writers: Brendan Wood (original story), Donn Mullahy (original story), Sam Robins (screenplay), Carl Foreman (uncredited) Starring: Leo Gorcey as Muggs McGinnis, Bobby…

June Film: Port of New York (1949)

  Port of New York 82 minutes | 28 November 1949 | United States ‘A film noir shot in semidocumentary style. Two narcotics agents go after a gang of murderous drug dealers who use ships docking at the New York harbor to smuggle in their contraband.’ Director: László Benedek Producer: Aubrey Schenk Screenplay: Eugene Ling Story: Arthur A. Ross, Bert Murray Starring: Scott Brady…

February Film: Under the Red Robe Analysis

A dowdy swashbuckler even at the time of its release in 1937, Under the Red Robe remains a curiosity today as the final film by Victor Sjöström, the father of Swedish cinema. Born in Silbodal in western Sweden, an infant Sjöström moved with his parents to Brooklyn, returning to Sweden at the age of seven and spending the remainder of…

February Film: Under the Red Robe (1937)

  Under the Red Robe 81 minutes | 8 November 1937 | United Kingdom/United States ‘The massacre of Saint Bartholemew in 1572 had swilled the gutters of Paris with Huguenot blood. 50 years later, diehards in the South were still a thorn in the side of Cardinal Richelieu. It was a period of plot and counter-plot, of reckless gallantry and ruthless…

January Film: The Great Flamarion Analysis

Based on a short story by the Austrian writer Vicki Baum, The Great Flamarion is full of film history resonance and would seem ripe for critical reassessment: set in the world of vaudeville, depicting an embittered artiste who kills at the behest of a femme fatale, the picture was an early directorial effort from Anthony Mann, who would later become renowned…

January Film: The Great Flamarion (1945)

  The Great Flamarion 76 minutes | 13 January 1945 | United States ‘Erich von Stroheim is The Great Flamarion, a marksman who employs a married couple for his vaudeville act. Having decided to rid herself of her husband, Connie plots to trick The Great Flamarion into doing the dirty work for her.’ Director: Anthony Mann Producer: William Lee Wilder Screenplay: Anne Wigton, Heinz…