Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Now Playing: FEB. 28, 1962

Back in the day the movie fan and newspaper reader had to distinguish among degrees of sleaze. Here are some samples, starting with Daytona Beach FL.

I've read Nelson Algren's novel but haven't gotten around to Edward Dmytryk's film, which I understand adapts only a fraction of the ground covered in Algren's Depression picaresque. The novel would certainly be "adult" by contemporary standards, though I doubt the film would qualify for that label today except wherever Rick Santorum gets his votes.
Here's the famous Saul Bass opening and title song, uploaded to YouTube by poshbaby1

On to Syracuse, where the city's "most unusual theater" presents a most unusual attraction.

Writer Laurence Zeitlin gives an account of the making of Paradisio here -- It's a Immoral Mr. Teas-inspired fantasy about a guy with genuine x-ray specs, and Zeitlin's only screenwriting credit. We're in the middle of a little 3-D boomlet, best known for The Mask -- and there's more to come this year. The second big hit has a place in film history as sex symbol/mad scientist Hedy Lamarr's last movie, made back in 1958. Malcom Drew has uploaded a no-embed clip reel of highlights from Female Animal on YouTube.

Finally, from the depths of Pittsburgh:

Not to be confused with Michael and Roberta Findlay's Flesh films, this is a French film known to home audiences as Détournement de mineures, which translates to something (I guess) like "Delinquency of a minor." A synopsis from a French movie site, translated by Bing, says: "A young daughter of a modest environment and who dreams to dance falls into the claws of a network of minor diversion." This is why the old-time ballyhoo was so important. The second feature was more difficult to track down, but Passionate Sunday proves to be an alternate title for Dark Odyssey, an American movie co-directed by Radley Metzger concerning a Greek who immigrates to this country to avenge the rape of his sister. Here's a clip uploaded by 913Tripolis44.

You'll forgive me for not posting "Now Playing" tomorrow, as there was no such thing as February 29, 1962. We can't have everything.

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