Pepe LeMoko first was portrayed on the silver screen by French acting legend Jean Gabin. Despite American versions of this story starring Charles Boyer and
Tony Martin, this became the standard the others are measured by.
The Casbah section of old Algiers is where noted thief LeMoko holds sway and the natives accord him demi-god status. No doubt from the fact he's paid off the native population well for protection. An attempt is made by the French occupiers to go in and take him out, but the police are made fools of.
It's hen protection becomes a prison. And the sight of a beautiful and chic French
woman played by Mireille Belin sets Pepe to thinking about what he can't have.
Beilin is wonderful in the Delilah role opposite Gabin's Samson. But there's
more to it than carnal desire. Pepe lives for his work, the planning and
execution of a caper, pitting his wits against law enforcement. His real nemesis
Inspector Slimane knows Pepe better than Gabin knows himself. Slimane is
played well by Romanian actor Carlos Gridaux.
As for Gabin he creates in Pepe one of the great portrayals of his career. He led a life quite similar to one of the existential characters of his career.
Smartly directed by Julien Duvivier. Pepe holds quite well, as well as the Hollywood version starring Charles Boyer that came out th following year..
With the making and release of The Exorcist, satanic worship became quite fad
in the 70s for the big and small screen. This episode from McMillan&Wife is not
one of the best examples of the genre.
Satanic worship is alive and well in San Francisco and as Jim Jones's cult was at its height when this episode was aired why wouldn't it b? There are a few covens operating at the time and one of them thinks Susan Saint James is the
reincarnation of the Egyptian goddess Serena. Her presence is demanded for their big vent on Halloween.
Such folks as Werner Klemperer, Keenan Wynn, and Robert Hooks are in the cast
and so is Barbara Colby, victim of a real life tragedy.
Calvin Lockhart is a rich businessman and professional hunter and like Leslie Banks
in that long ago RKO classic The Most Dangerous Game has summoned a bunch of guests. One of them he suspects is a werewolf and it's a full moon rising.
Sure enough the werewolf starts doing its thing and Lockhart even with silver
bullets just can't get the job done In the end Lockhart does the job, but at a tremendous cost.
Enough blood and gore for any horror film fan. What I don't understand is that Lockhart and scientist Peter Cushing develop a werewolf test. Why didn't they use it earlier?
As you can imagine Travis Fine's muteness does make him a shy guy around people and women in particular. But he falls hard and fast Kelli Williams after he and Yvonne Suhor save Williams and her father Buck Taylor from ambush.
Taylor is ne'er do well who is a degenerate gambler and drinker. The two have had to move constantly because his bad habits keep getting them in trouble,
Trouble comes from a murderous gambler played by Michael Harris. Multiple
tragedies abound in this seminal episode for The Young Riders.
This Warner Brothers short subject features Lillian Roth the woman whose autobiography I'll Cry Tomorrow provided Susan Hayward with one of her great
roles. But that was two decades into the future.
Roth had already been in Hollywood and Paramount put her in such feature films as Animal Crackers, The Vagabond King, and Madame Satan. She was at pretty much the end of her film career when Story Conference came out.
The framework for the many numbers in this short was a conference among
studio writers and their ideas for the next Lillian Roth picture. The number s are cute but mostly forgettable. One however entitled Alimony Sal was pretty good and might have been better known if it were in one of Warner Brothers
feature film musicals.
This is a good chance to see the real Lillian Roth.
As war clouds gather this episode has Anthony Zerbe and the Pony Express Riders
trying to track down some gun running mercenaries who'll sell to one and all if their price is met. As it were Stephen Baldwin gets himself involved with widow
Margaret Reed and her son Gregor Hesse. Her late husband used to ride with this bunch and they still use her property as a place to store their contraband.
Gregg Rainwater still in mourning for Travis Fine who was killed in the previous episode, helps a very pregnant Linda Allwyn whose husband was killed y these same outlaws.
Nice shootout with the outlaws and the Young Riders to climax this fine episode.
The Gorilla Man is a wartime espionage story starring John Loder with a ton of th
character players from Hollywood's British colony. Loder is a wounded RAF pilot at a coastal hospital that's run by a small cohort of Nazi spies.
Loder has found out where the planned invasion of the United Kingdom is to
be made and he wants to tell those in power. But the bad guys frame him for a murder and he's now a hunted one.
Some similarities between. The classic 39 Steps of Alfred Hitchcock and the James Garner film 36 Hours. Nowhere close to those and the plot has to manu holes,
And if you want to know the origin of the title, The Gorilla Man you watch the movie.
Gorillas, mad scientists, and invisible women Oh my my
Harold Peary stars as his famous radio character of Throckmorton P. Gildersleeve in this, one of a series of films RKO did adapted from the radio series. Not one of
the better of the series.
Hollywood has a fascination with primate behavior from Tarzan to King Kong and occasionally
folks like Abbott&Costello and the Ritz Brothers played it for laughs. This was
not one of the better primate films.
Too much was thrown in here, everything from the ape, experimented on by the usual
movie mad scientists to a disappearing and reappearing Marion Martin. Just
too many ingredients without a proper recipe.
This McMillan&Wife episode concerns the sport of kings and specifically William Demarest who owns a racing stable. He's a cantankerous old cuss but it looks like someone is out to kill him. The hints are quite subtle at first, but they get more and more obvious as the story progresses. A lot of denizens of the racetrack provide a handy list of suspects from where our murderer comes from. I say murderer because one of them is murdered making it an SFPD homicide case. In fact the real culprit takes log chance doing something to deflect suspicion. Watch and see what I mean. Both Rock Hudson and Susan Saint James get into harm's way as well. It's a
After attorney Gerald Mohr publicly threatens to shoot Judge Fred Clark over a
decision he didn't like, he pays off itinerant photographer Jack Albertson to do
such a thing. In one of the earliest examples of special effects Mohr gets what
he needs. Albertson needs the cash to send his tomboy nice to a finishing school back east. The niece played by Sheilah Wells is a bit rough around the edges. Mohr's character makes no sense. He's a lawyer and presumably would know
not to make public threats. Not one of the better Bonanza stories.
When Barbara Stanwyck is out visiting some mining properties in a nearby town
she gets grabbed by some prison guards and made to take the place of a woman they had been transporting to serve her sentence at Furnace Hill prison. Just
the name conjures up things that will creep you out, And if that doesn't do it Bruce Dern the guard in charge will creep you out even more. Dern is playing one
of his patented low lifes which he did so well in his younger days. Stanwyck's salvation may come from the other prisoner Fritz Weaver who has a
class distinction problem with her. Weaver resents the Barkley wealth and position, but he's all Stanwyck has. I always like the episodes that feature Stanwyck and shw gets good support rom
Weaver and Dern.
It's none other than Rock Hudson's trusty aide John Schuck who our San Francisco
police commissioner out of a most elaborate murder frame . The victim here is none
other than Lorraine Gary who is Sergeant Enright's ex-wife. These two must have had one rocky marriage, But at a party in a locked room here all can be heard,
a murder is heard. Gary is supposedly shot down by Schuck. It's a trap Agatha Christie would have envied. Even the forensics are fooled somewhat. But it's the forensics that are Schuck's salvation. Big kudos go to Lorraine Gary as one crazy lady.
Some of the themes of They Shoot Horses Don't They are found in this contemporary film of the early talkies about dance contests. Dancing Sweeties
is about a boy and girl who have dancing on their minds 24/7.
The young couple are Grant Withers and Sue Carol. After a while though Carol
wants to settle down, but Withers is a dancing and in many ways other kinds of
The song The Kiss Waltz was introduced here, but over all I'd say the film hasn't
worn well with age.
Grant Withers was the first husband of Loretta Young. As for Sue Carol she
got out of acting and became an agent. Her best known client was her husband Alan Ladd. But that was year's down the road.
In her woman/child period of Bugsy Malone and Taxi Driver Jodie Foster turned out
this curious film. The Little Girl Who Lives Down The Lane is a 70s version of The Bad Seed. She wants to live alone though given her circumstances I doubt anyone in a responsible position of authority will let her. People just go missing
around her including parents.
Acting honors in this film go to Martin Sheen the son of Foster's family's landlady Alexis Smith. As it is designed to do, Sheen's performance will make your skin crawl,
Foster reputedly does not like the finished product. It definitely is in the
middle rung at best in her body of work.
One night there's a knock on the door and Ellen Waglom is at the front door claiming to be a missing runaway daughter who just escaped from her captor.
The man who kidnapped her had held her prisoner for many years.
A short story with a happy ending? Not quite. This particular SVU story involves two different sex crimes and a case of identity theft.
It's all held together by a great performance by Ellen Waglom who tells a sad story even if at
first it's not all true.
Kudos go to Peter Gray Lewis as her captor and quite a bit more than that. He's some piece of work
In this era of COVID and a lot of quackery that has come from the highest levels of government itself, this SV episode about AIDS has taken on a frightening relevancy.
The death of an untreated HIV baby starts a criminal investigation against mother
Paula Malcomson. She has not had any of the standard treatments for AIDS and is in the hands of a quack doctor played by Martin Mull.
Like the man who said chlorox will help your COVID, Mull gives a frightening portrayal of a quack with a platform, And he's believing all the lies he's started, even more frightening.
The one who is truly affected is Aidan Mitchell, Malcomson's son. You have to see ow
this multiple tragedy plays out.
The original original pilot episode for this series is this program. It is essentially
the same episode as the first broadcasted episode with the same plot situations.
The big differences are that Peter Barton was known as David Star and the role of
mentor/guardian was played by Gerald O'Loughlin. O'Loughlin was the school
custodian and not a science teacher. I'm guessing the producers thought
having the adult be a science teacher might explain strange things occurring in
But if you've seen the first episode the plot is just about the same.
A case involving a serial killer of women and an old gypsy vendetta against a
man who betrayed them to the Communists years ago get entangled. All I
will say is that in fact the cases are separate and there are two different
perpetrators. How they become connected is for you to find out by watching the
Kathleen Widdoes does a fine job as the gypsy queen who gets Telly Savalas's
team looking for someone who may have betrayed a lot of gypsies to the
Communists in Hungary, Grateful isn't exactly the atitude Kojak has for
Widdoes, but they develop a healthy respect for each other. One smart individual for another.