The Patrick Hamilton Appreciation Society discussion

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message 1: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
Here's a place you can discuss film


I've set it up as I happen to have watched both The Wolf Of Wall Street and American Hustle in the last week or so

I tend to wait until films arrive on the TV as, controversially, I find the experience of going to the cinema to be very unsatisfactory. I know it's supposed to work the other way round and I can elaborate if anyone is interested.

Anyway, both The Wolf Of Wall Street and, especially, American Hustle are wonderful cinematic experiences.

The Wolf Of Wall Street is basically Martin Scorsese reprising Good Fellas but on Wall Street. Obviously gangsters make for a better film than stockbrokers but still Scorsese gets plenty of mileage out of the most outrageous greed and excess ever to be put in a film (I'm guessing - anyone know what tops this?).

It rattles along at a great pace. Loads of great music on the soundtrack. A great central performance - and some brilliant supporting ones too. Drugs. Lots of drugs. Sex. Lots of sex. It's totally vacuous and makes no comment on the behaviour or the characters but it's a helluva ride and, for those that like Scorcese films, it's another winner - just check your brain in at the door.

Then again, you could just watch Good Fellas again.

This Roger Ebert reviews sums up American Hustle far better than I could, and also compares it to The Wolf Of Wall Street...

http://www.rogerebert.com/reviews/ame...

What do you think of these films?

What are your favourite films?

What do you look for in a film?

What was the golden age of cinema?

Who are your favourite actors and directors?


message 2: by Greg (new)

Greg | 159 comments I've just noticed this thread while looking for the applicable place to post an enquiry.
I'll come back to Nigeyb's initial post about cinema.

While researching English actor Donald Pleasence I discovered that he wrote and directed a children's book/album titled 'Scouse the Mouse' in 1977, vocals by Ringo Starr and Adam Faith. I would like to know more about this, and find a copy if possible.


message 3: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
A new one on me Greg.

A track here...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GpDwy...

Quite expensive..

https://www.discogs.com/Various-Ringo...


message 4: by Greg (new)

Greg | 159 comments Thanks Nigeyb, what a great song. It has a Yellow submarine feel to it. Very catchy.
That is expensive, ouch!


message 5: by CQM (new)

CQM | 214 comments Whisper it but I'm not a Beatles fan (much to the consternation of Mrs. CQM) but I love weird stuff like this. Who'd have thought Donald Pleasance wrote a childrens book and turned it in to an album featuring Ringo and Adam Faith? You couldn't make it up.

Going back to Nigey's first post concerning films you've opened a whole new subject on which I could bore for Britain.

What do you think of these films?
I've not seen either of those films, with a very few exceptions the most modern films I watch are mid late 70's (again much to the consternation of Mrs. CQM)

What are your favourite films?
In no particular order my top 8 is The Third Man, The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, The Apartment, Sons of the Desert, Force of Evil, The Maltese Falcon, I Know Where I'm Going, The Man Who Would Be King (obviously this list is subject to constant change it started out as a top 3)

What do you look for in a film?
Smart screenplay, good cinematography (Jack Cardiff was a God for his few films with Powell and Pressburger alone) but ultimately no one thing, it can look like rubbish as long as the film has something to set it apart from the usual trash.

What was the golden age of cinema?
I'm going to plump for roughly 1914 (when Chaplin arrives on the scene) up until the mid 1950's. There's a lot of great films made after that, admittedly long, period but not in the same volume. But it's all personal opinion.

Who are your favourite actors and directors?
Actors, Bogart, Cagney, Chaplin, Keaton, Laurel and Hardy, Margaret Rutherford, C. Aubrey Smith and many more I've forgotten off the top of my head.
Directors, Billy Wilder, John Huston, Carol Reed, Raoul Walsh, Hitchcock, Preston Sturges... and again loads I've forgotten.

Well you did ask...


message 6: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
Thanks so much CQM. I really enjoyed your responses. I favour the 70s but that's really just through relative ignorance about much of the cinema of earlier periods. That said, I have seen, and loved...

The Third Man
The Treasure of the Sierra Madre
The Apartment
The Maltese Falcon
I Know Where I'm Going

and I'd certainly not argue with your list of actors and directors, although mine would look quite different.

Well done for avoiding modernity. Quite an achievement.

I had the pleasure of revisiting an old favourite earlier this week, Barry Levinson's 'Tin Men' from 1987 - what a great film - it's been a good 15 years since my last viewing.

Levinson was also responsible for one of my favourite TV shows 'Homicide Life On The Streets' (by David “The Wire” Simon) - a precursor to so much else

“Tin Men” is one of those small, affectionate films about a time and a place and which has sympathy for all of its characters

The Baltimore alleys that would come to feel like very scary places in David Simon’s “The Wire” are already shabby in “Tin Men”

“You know what our big crime is? We’re nickle- and-dime guys. Just small-time hustlers that got caught because we were hustling nickles and dimes.”

It makes me feel very nostalgic for a time and a place that I have absolutely no personal experience for and that must surely be the sign of a brilliant film.

Any fellow fans out there?


message 7: by CQM (new)

CQM | 214 comments I've heard of Tin Men but not seen it.
I've just had a quick check to see if I know Homicide Life on the Streets, there are so many of those American cop dramas I'm never sure which is which. Turns out I haven't seen that either I was thinking of NYPD Blue...
So what are the answers to your own questions?


message 8: by Nigeyb (last edited Oct 07, 2016 08:03AM) (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
^ All very predictable I'm afraid to say CQM. Off the top of my head and with minimum thought (would change tomorrow, like yours)


What are your favourite films?

The Wicker Man
Performance
The Purple Rose of Cairo
Godfathers 1 + 2
The Man Who Fell To Earth
The Warriors
Sunset Boulevard
Napoleon Dynamite
Sightseers
Don't Look Now
Chinatown
Good Fellas
The Philadelphia Story
Scott Pilgrim Conquers The World
Annie Hall
Apocalypse Now
Get Carter
Trainspotting
Grand Budapest Hotel
Repulsion
Gangster No 1
True Romance

What do you look for in a film?

Humour
Charisma
Resonance
Insights
Drama
Music

What was the golden age of cinema?

1970-79

Who are your favourite actors and directors?

Paddy Considine
Anjelica Houston
Early de Niro
Mark Ruffalo
Tom Hardy
Marlene Dietrich
Humphrey Bogart
Lauren Bacall
The Coen Brothers
Michael Mann
David O. Russell
Shane Meadows
Ken Russell
Ken Loach

See, right there, the perfect illustration about how I'm too wide and insufficiently narrow and deep. I'm in thrall to far too much.


message 9: by Mark (new)

Mark Rubenstein | 1349 comments What are your favourite films?

The Loveless
The Night of The Hunter
The Friends of Eddie Coyle
Get Carter
Wings of Desire
Betty Blue
Bande à part [Band of Outsiders]
Rififi


What do you look for in a film?

A story, first and foremost, and then a mood.


What was the golden age of cinema?

In Germany, 1917-1933
In England, 1947-1971
In America, 1939-1974


Who are your favourite actors and directors?

Robert Mitchum and Michael Caine.
Shane Meadows and Ken Loach and Fritz Lang and John Waters.


message 10: by Nigeyb (last edited Oct 07, 2016 11:46AM) (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
Completely forgot about Lang and Waters.

Thanks Mark.


message 11: by Mark (new)

Mark Rubenstein | 1349 comments Always happy to chime in!


message 12: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
Needless to say I keep remembering great films I love. There really are too many to list but, here's a few more...

Sweet Smell of Success
Badlands
Kind Hearts and Coronets
Mystery Train
M
Being There
Walkabout
The Big Lebowski
The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari
Mullholland Drive
Nosferatu
Se7en
Jule et Jim
Repo Man
The Good, The Bad and the Ugly
Scarface
The Long Goodbye
After Hours
Blow Up
The Conversation
Some Like It Hot
On The Waterfront
Magnolia
Touch of Evil
Hoop Dreams
The Apartment
Pulp Fiction
FArgo
LA Confidential
24 Hour Party People
Pan's Layrinth
The Right Stuff
Bring Me The Head of Alfredo Garcia
Bonnie and Clyde


message 13: by CQM (new)

CQM | 214 comments Reading your answers is just reminding me of loads of great films I've forgotten, Night of the Hunter is an amazing film, why didn't Charles Laughton direct anymore films?
And how could I forget Kind Hearts and Coronets? Or indeed the other great Ealing comedies, The Ladykillers, The Lavender Hill Mob, The Man in the White Suit... it goes on.
And my guilty loves, Hammer Horror and Carry on. I've lost track of the times I've seen Carry on Camping but it never lets me down.


message 14: by Nigeyb (last edited Oct 08, 2016 02:45AM) (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
I too love both Hammer films and Carry Ons having enjoyed regular portions of both during my childhood. I've not watched many of them in adulthood but can clearly remember whole sections of both. Hammer and Carry On both feel vaguely Hamiltonian too, though don't ask me to back that statement up. I might even set up a thread on one or both.

I've read the Kenneth Williams diaries, many moons ago, and also, a couple of years back, Charles Hawtrey 1914 1988...

www.goodreads.com/review/show/915651417

And from the review above..

As Roger Lewis acknowledges, as much as we love the Carry Ons (and I do) our affection isn't based on their artistic merits. Part of the pleasure of this 98 page monograph is reading Roger Lewis's obvious love for Hawtrey's abilities and comedic skills ("the positive joy of Hawtrey's performances imply the possibility of happiness"), coupled with his forthright opinions on some of the other Carry On regulars. His fiercest criticism is reserved for the two Kenneths: Kenneth Connor ("what a pain in the arse") and Kenneth Williams ("an appalling actor, affected, caustic, shrieking like a peacock and with no sense of dramatic rhythm").

By the by, one of my first jobs, as a 16 year old, was working out of an office in Fitzroy Square, just round the corner from where Kenneth Williams used to live. I used to see him regularly.

Fast forward about 10 years and whilst living in Brighton I used to regularly visit Dora Bryan's pub (well, more of a bar in a hotel), Clarges, and she was always up for a chat about acting though was quite embarrassed about the Carry On films.

That very hotel features in Carry On Girls...

http://www.mybrightonandhove.org.uk/p...


message 15: by Mark (new)

Mark Rubenstein | 1349 comments CQM wrote: "Whisper it but I'm not a Beatles fan."

I'm right there with you. Always have been, always will be. Make mine the Stones, Small Faces, Pretty Things... hell, in a real pinch, I'll even take Wings over them.


message 16: by Mark (new)

Mark Rubenstein | 1349 comments CQM wrote: "Night of the Hunter is an amazing film, why didn't Charles Laughton direct anymore films?"

There was a time when I'd've been able to give you a solid answer to that very question, and delivered it with confidence. I'm older now, and new holes appear daily in my memory. But, if I'm remembering correctly, the chief reason for Laughton's incredibly brief directorial career is because Night of the Hunter was critically panned and commercially unsuccessful upon release. With the distance of time, it was looked back upon as a film of merit, but the initial response left Laughton riddled with doubt about his abilities as a director.


message 17: by Mark (new)

Mark Rubenstein | 1349 comments Mine should've included Kes and Withnail & I.

Two inexcusable oversights that I wouldn't like to be judged by.


message 18: by CQM (new)

CQM | 214 comments Long time since we've been here and reading back over these conversations makes me feel my own initial answers were wholly unworthy, if only in what I missed out.
Anyhow I thought it might be of interest that Bitter Harvest is on good old Talking Pictures tonight at 11pm. I can't remember if it's been discussed elsewhere around these parts but it's the 1963 adaption of the 20,000 Streets Under the Sky trilogy. I've not seen it myself and looking at the cast, with the exception of Thora Hird as a grasping landlady, it doesn't fill me with hope of an excellent version. Still might be worth a look.
All apologies to those among us unlucky enough to not have access to Talking Pictures... My heart truly goes out to you.


message 19: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
Thanks so much CQM. Your post sent me straight off to my Virgin Box to check if I have Talking Pictures and, given I have the most basic package, I was pleasantly surprised to see that I do have it. Hurrah.

Thora Hird surely worth the price of admission on her own. Looking forward to watching Bitter Harvest in the near future.

Thanks again


message 20: by Mark (new)

Mark Rubenstein | 1349 comments This might not be the totally right spot to post this, but have you seen Shane Meadows’ new effort yet, The Virtues? Very curious to hear how it is, and very keen to eventually see it.


message 21: by Nigeyb (last edited May 18, 2019 12:14PM) (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
No, not yet, but I'm a massive Shane Meadows fan. Thanks for the prompt


message 22: by Mark (new)

Mark Rubenstein | 1349 comments Same here, so I’m determined to see it, eventually. Amazon UK is taking pre-orders for the dvd -- or blue ray or whatever the hell they’re calling them these days -- but for some reason feel compelled to blaze red text across the product description informing that it doesn’t ship to the states. A wholly ugly new escalation in Trump’s trade wars? If so, that’s a step too far, I can tell you.


message 23: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
That's very annoying, and depressing, Mark


message 24: by Mark (new)

Mark Rubenstein | 1349 comments Don’t cry for me. Where there’s a will, there’s almost always an overpriced way.

Do let me know what you think once you’ve watched it. I’m able to stream all of the BBC channels live, but the time difference makes almost everything impossible, and The Virtues has yet to be offered on catch-up.

Surely there must be other mail order options in the UK apart from Amazon?


message 25: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
The Virtues is available here on catch up via All4 (Channel 4's catch up site/app) which you can watch online, at least in the UK. It's only episode one so far.

I've watched the first 20 minutes, it's a somewhat downbeat start but Stephen Graham is as good as usual.


message 26: by Mark (new)

Mark Rubenstein | 1349 comments So far, so encouraging. I’m sure it’ll be the usual Shane Meadows Emotional Rollercoaster.


message 27: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
Two episodes in to The Virtues and it's good but, as so often with Shane, pretty damn dark. It's obvious what territory we're about to enter and it's grim grim grim. I'm hoping for some kind of redemptive ending though. Stephen Graham shines as always.


message 28: by Mark (new)

Mark Rubenstein | 1349 comments So not your typical Shane Meadows lighthearted feel-good fare, then?

Sounds good to me and, fortunately, Amazon UK have lifted their restrictions on shipping the forthcoming dvd to the states, so I’ve wasted no time in getting in with my pre-order.

So, as the kids say, no spoilers, please and thank you.


message 29: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
A couple of intriguing films coming up on Talking Pictures tomorrow...


Love on the Dole (1941)
14:35-16:35 Wed 16th Oct 2019 90m

Based on Love on the Dole by Walter Greenwood - which is excellent

https://www.bfi.org.uk/films-tv-peopl...


Millions like Us (1943)
01:45-03:45 Wed 16th Oct 2019 125m

A young Londoner is sent to an arms factory in the Midlands, where she encounters a supportive world of women from across the class system.

https://www.bfi.org.uk/films-tv-peopl...


And, bonus selection, in the unlikely event you've never seen it, coming up on Sunday....

I Know Where I'm Going! (1945)
23:35-01:35 Sun 20th Oct 2019 90m

Joan Webster (Wendy Hiller) is a headstrong young woman who travels to the bleak and moody Scottish Hebrides to marry a rich lord. Stranded by stormy weather along the way, Joan meets a handsome and penniless naval officer (Roger Livesey) who threatens to spoil her carefully laid-out life plans in this mythical romance by directors Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger.

https://www.bfi.org.uk/films-tv-peopl...


message 30: by David (new)

David | 802 comments Thanks for pointing me towards this terrific channel. Even just watching little clips of what's live is fun. Last night I chanced upon some drama on an aircraft with Harry Secombe as a passenger and Stanley Baker in his usual jutting-jawed uniformed authority part. The co-owner looked up quizzically when I remarked, "Snorkers? Good-oh!" in tribute to his memorable role in The Cruel Sea.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YBZcE...


message 31: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
We aim to please David - glad to discover you are enjoying it


message 32: by Nigeyb (last edited Oct 24, 2019 01:13PM) (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
Expresso Bongo (1959)


...is on Talking Pictures tomorrow night (Friday 25th October 2019) at 23:50

Stars Laurence Harvey, Sylvia Syms, Yolande Donlan & Cliff Richard.

A sleazy agent discovers a young singer in a coffee house and starts him on the road to stardom.


message 33: by Nigeyb (last edited Oct 24, 2019 01:14PM) (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
The Servant (1963)


...is on Talking Pictures on Saturday night (Saturday 26th October 2019) at 23:35

Director: Joseph Losey.

Stars Dirk Bogarde, James Fox, Sarah Miles & Wendy Craig.

A British aristocrat, hires the mysterious household servant who causes unrest in the household.


message 34: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
Has anyone watched....


Villain (1971)

...starring Richard Burton?

I've had the DVD for a while and finally got round to watching it

Whilst not quite Get Carter it is still pretty damn good - indeed I thought it was superb

Filming on location makes such a massive difference to the look and feel of a film....

The London locations are worth the price of admission alone. The occasional Bracknell scenes are a great contrast.

The cast are great, though Burton is a tad miscast. And, for the time, it's surprisingly gritty... some full on violence, homosexuality, blackmail etc.

It's only the coppers who are less convincing. Or maybe I've been conditioned by too many episodes of The Sweeney?

And the blag itself is very convincing.

I was especially happy to see Brighton and Hove's West Pier. I've not come across too many films that have an extended scene on the West Pier excepting Oh! What a Lovely War

I'll definitely be giving it a rewatch and try to identify a few of the locations. The boozer is the Assembly House in Kentish Town.

I noticed Johnny Shannon turns up right at the end, when the gang are springing Frank Fletcher's brother-in-law. I wonder what he might have done with the Vic Dakin role? Though perhaps he would only have been reprising his role in Performance.




message 35: by Mark (new)

Mark Rubenstein | 1349 comments It’s been quite a few years, but I definitely remember enjoying the film a lot. I’ve got it on dvd, so will make it something of a priority to watch again. I can’t remember the exact details, but bits of the film were based on episodes from the colourful life of David Litvinoff, as pointed out in Keiron Pim’s excellent Jumping Jack Flash biography.

The film was also discussed, entertainingly so, during Dr John Cooper Clarke’s appearance on Jonesy’s Jukebox...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h2UBB...

It’s at the 3:45 mark, for anyone foolish enough to skip the rest.


message 36: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
Thanks Mark


Yes, there are definitely scenes lifted from Litvinoff's life most memorably being hung outside the window of a flat


message 37: by CQM (new)

CQM | 214 comments Nigey I hope this aids your attempt to identify locations.
https://www.reelstreets.com/films/vil...


message 38: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
Cor blimey guvnor, that reelstreets is a trove, indeed the mother lode. Thanks CQM


message 39: by CQM (new)

CQM | 214 comments I've lost many an hour idly scrolling through Reel Streets.


message 40: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
As all right thinking people would. I will be joining you down that particular wormhole


Thanks again CQM


message 41: by David (new)

David | 802 comments Sorry I can’t seem to use previous message quotations in the Goodreads app, but there’s a Shane Meadows


message 42: by David (new)

David | 802 comments Duh. The Goodreads app won’t let me quote from previous posts, but since The Virtues was referenced...ooh, ages ago, there’s a good interview with Stephen Graham here:


https://www.theguardian.com/film/2019...

Woah, that’s a mighty URL.


message 43: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
Stephen Graham is great in The Irishman. Thanks for the link David, I'll be reading that later today.

After I'd watched it I enjoyed this interview with SG on YouTube....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qBx4p...
The Irishman's Stephen Graham on Filming THAT Scene With Pacino And De Niro

It doesn't contain any spoilers so you can enjoy it even if you haven't seen the film.


message 44: by David (new)

David | 802 comments 3 hours.

THREE HOURS???

Given that the go-to cure for my temperamental artistic 😆 brain’s refusal to shut down is to stick a DVD into the machine and be snoring within 20 minutes, The Irishman, about which I’ve read nothing but praise, will need to be taken in teaspoonfuls.

I will, though. My artistic consultants’ recommendations dictate so.


message 45: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
I watched it in instalments. Like you David I cannot stick with many things for three hours in one go.


message 46: by CQM (new)

CQM | 214 comments Apropos of nothing in particular I've just seen a advert on Talking Pictures for A Canterbury Tale. They're showing it on Saturday at 5.30 and if you haven't seen it and have the opportunity it is not to be missed. A stone cold, copper bottomed, sure fire, classic of a film from Powell and Pressburger. Consider yourselves told.


message 47: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
Yes. I second that CQM. An enjoyable and slightly weird cinematic treat


message 48: by David (new)

David | 802 comments Purely by chance, I turned on Talking Pictures TV and only The Blue Lamp has just started!

Pile in now!

Ev’nin all...


message 49: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb | 3826 comments Mod
Ah. Too late. Shame


message 50: by David (new)

David | 802 comments Never mind. Up The Chastity Belt to follow. Eeek.

I’ve tuned into Yesterday instead, and Buzzcocks, The Damned, The Stranglers and currently The Jam are the Sounds of this particular Suburb.


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