I write stuff and run the press office at the Royal Albert Hall. Big fan of Lillian Gish and The Magnificent Ambersons.
The archetypal Hawks film: flinty people with gooey centres bickering about love, honour and work, as the men fly mail through the Andes. It's exceptional in every way, though the performances from Jean Arthur and Thomas Mitchell are particularly special; their heart-to-heart in the bar remains one of the great scenes in American cinema. Jules Furthman sure could write, and Joseph Walker's sumptuous monochrome cinematography piles on the atmosphere.
*A FEW SPOILERS*
The second Mad Doctor film is much the same as the first, with Karloff cast once again as a pioneering scientist whose research is interrupted by meddling bureaucrats, causing a tragedy – after which he naturally starts murdering people. The story is diverting enough, the star is as charismatic as ever and the pivotal ‘ice room’ looks great on camera, but the execution is rather slow and laborious, and the dialogue and supporting cast purely functional. The idea of a group of people sleeping through perhaps the most tumultuous decade in modern history is a fascinating one that isn't even tentatively explored.
You can take your Juno, your Scott Pilgrim, even your Heathers, and chuck them in a skip, because Ghost World just does it all so much better. Well, all of it that's worth doing. I'm beginning to think this melancholy, bitingly hilarious crystallisation of teen ennui might be the only film I'll ever really need.
*SOME SPOILERS. ALSO, IF YOU AREN'T INTERESTED IN ORSON WELLES, YOU WILL FIND THIS BORING. EVEN IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN ORSON WELLES, YOU MAY FIND THIS BORING*
"Something had happened. A thing which years ago had been the eagerest hope of many, many good citizens of the town. And now it came at last: George Amberson Minafer had got his comeuppance. He got it three times filled and running over. But those who had so longed for it were…