the magnificent seven

My Favorite Screen Villains Top 10

April 20, 2018 // 8 Comments

      10                                                         ROBERT RYAN as Master of Arms John Claggart in BILLY BUDD (1962) Billy Budd (1962) is a fine drama that helped put a young Terence Stamp into the upper bracket of British stars during the sixties, but it was Hollywood veteran Robert Ryan who stole the picture. He convincingly played Master of Arms [...]

STEVE MCQUEEN – Not a nice guy.

August 17, 2017 // 3 Comments

  Steve McQueen’s mother was a prostitute, his father a circus stuntman and neither cared a fig about their boy. He lost his virginity at 13 to an obese teenaged hooker who accepted candy for sex. At 16 he was a towel boy in a brothel and encouraged to sample the wares on offer. Shoplifting and stealing hubcaps would land him in Chino Reformatory in California for five years between 1944 [...]

Miss Peggy Lee

February 22, 2017 // 0 Comments

                                      Peggy Lee was not only an extraordinary singer, she also had the makings of a fine dramatic actress as evidenced by her Oscar nomination for Pete Kelly’s Blues (1955). She later complained that more movie offers never came her way because her agent was making a lot more money out of her being on the road year in and year out, so he kept [...]

Did you know?

January 29, 2017 // 5 Comments

  Mickey Rooney was at the top of the Hollywood tree in the thirties and lived his life in the fast lane. MGM’s publicity machine had him collecting stamps and coins like any other young American boy. It was even spread about that his favourite author was Eugene O’Neill. Randy little Mickey did not collect stamps or coins, nor did he read books, any books, much less O’Neill’s. He [...]

Stars we lost in 2016 – PT 1.

January 23, 2017 // 0 Comments

  Every year the movie world loses irreplaceable talent to the ravages of time, illness and mishap, and 2016 was no exception. Here is a brief look at some of the performers whose unique personas will no longer grace our screens. Fortunately, unlike most of us, their best works will live forever on celluloid. I shall look at the others in a couple of days. The two-part list begins with the [...]

Did you know?

January 21, 2017 // 0 Comments

  Fifty or more years after The Magnificent Seven first graced our screens in 1960, it is still the second-most repeated movie on American television. Only Casablanca is shown more. Actor James Coburn could thank a scheduled strike by the Screen Actors Guild for his opportunity to star in it. He could also thank his friend and fellow thespian Robert Vaughn.     Robert Vaughn in The [...]

Memorable musical moments in movies – PT2 – (25-1).

December 24, 2016 // 2 Comments

  25          PULP FICTION (1994) – The popular Chuck Berry hit, ‘You Never Can Tell’, gets a second life as Uma Thurman and John Travolta join the ‘Jack Rabbit Slim Twist Contest’ – and win. To my mind Travolta is one of the most watchable actors going around, and has been since Welcome Back, Kotter. 24          TOP GUN (1986) – Every once in a while a piece [...]

The making of ‘The Magnificent Seven’ (1960)

July 17, 2016 // 4 Comments

  The Mirisch brothers, Walter, Marvin and Harold, produced a number of highly profitable movies in the fifties and sixties – Some Like it Hot (1959), West Side Story (1961), The Pink Panther (1963) and In the Heat of the Night (1967) were among them. The Magnificent Seven and The Great Escape were two more. The iconic western cost $2 million to make, was shot on location in Mexico, and it [...]