Thursday, June 16, 2011

'Out of the Past' Open Thread


     What did you think?

Now for those of us who had to go through this odyssey, a treat in the form of a promotional image made of the young Miss Jane Greer. I've got to say, she seems to really enjoy having a little fun with simply being an appealing young woman.

Good for her!


  1. I gotta tell ya, this looks pretty good!

  2. First of all -- How did they get all of these gorgeous people in one place? Even the deputy bad-guy that tried to kill the hero was good-looking. And how many beautiful leading ladies does a hero need?

    I really enjoyed this, even though they did -- SPOILER ALERT -- kill off the hero at the end.

    The guys were great, of course. Robert Mitchum so comfortable in himself, the man of few words (almost a shame, really; I love his voice) and KIrk Douglas, so elegant, so serenely business-like in everything -- until the scene where Whit explains to Kathie how he will kill her -- eventually -- if she crosses him, and the real evil comes through. Fabulous!

    Jane Greer was pretty fabulous, too. Cool, composed, slightly amused by Bailey's attempts to pick her up -- I fell for her! I thought she was amazing as a woman whose story changed with the wind, but always seemed to truly believe whatever she was telling him.

    I loved the twists and turns as the story progressed, especially when Bailey hid the lawyer's body -- that was too great, when Kathie calls the super at the apartment building to check on Eels, and his dead body isn't there to be discovered!

    One thing I Do Not Get -- at the very end. The "kid" indicates to Ann that Bailey was indeed running away with this woman from his past, and signals Heaven-ward with a grin when Ann walks away, suggesting this is what Bailey would have wanted.

    But how is it better for Ann to believe she was duped by Jeff, or at least eclipsed by the woman he had claimed he no longer cared for? And how is it better for the local fellow who has always loved her to end up with her marrying him because the guy she really loved dumped her? Because he only looked good compared to a criminal?

    I would have liked it much better if it had been suggested that, once her grief eased, Ann would fall in love with the man who stood by her.

    But, mostly I really liked it!

  3. Yes, that ending is a bit uncomfortable, but that's the way these types of movies tend to go. You can't feel too bad when the hero goes down at the end, he was going down from the opening credits. I suppose I should have warned you about that:

    "Oh by the way, don't get too attached to the hero..."

    Yeah, well... oh well. : )

    What's fun is the dialogue, the hidden malice, the energy and confidence in Douglas' Whit - I understand this was Kirk Douglas' second movie. My word, where did all that confidence and self assuredness come from?

    So the show starts out with Kathy having shot at Whit "four times, made one of 'em good." And as scary and controlling as this guy is, in the end, after he goes to all this trouble to get that girl back, she guns him down as easy as kiss my hand. Sheesh, these femme fatale types will really put the mileage on you. That's the way it goes, I guess. Another in and another out. Life's tough for us drone bees.

    But I did enjoy the movie, loved the story aspect of it, the complications, the efforts Jeff made to work it out for him, and for his girl too. Almost made it, too. "Build my gallows high, baby."

    Yeah, that was a good one.

  4. Wait for me!
    Saw SPOILER ALERT so I've not read the above yet, but I'm hoping it's going to arrive today, so if you move on to some soppy romance or baseball movie before I'm done with this one you'll be in big trouble!

  5. This was a really great movie. I so loved the dialog. Whoever wrote the lines that Mitchum was throwing off was mighty quick. And Cathy is right of course, Whit on the surface was very much controlled and in his element, but when Jeff spelled it out for him and he realized he had been played again by the lovely Kathy, the grit in his voice and malevolence in what he was saying took you aback.

    Funny, how Kathy's out was always to say she had been forced into vile company, that she was acting against her will, and we are even asked to feel sorry for her for the violence that Whit is willing to met out to her, but was Whit the most dangerous and violent character in the movie? Who had shot Whit at the start of the show? Who shot Fisher? Who sent Joe to shoot Jeff? Who killed Whit. And when she realized Jeff had tipped off the police, who shot and killed poor Jeff? Whenever they talked about who was going to take the fall for the crime, Kathy was quick to point out that she would say Jeff had done it, and that they would believe her, and Jeff knew she was right. Being a woman, and an attractive woman at that, enabled Kathy to get away a great deal. But the truth is, the most self-centered, violent, destructive, vile character in the movie was clearly Kathy Moffett.

    It's an excellent movie Matt, and we will be quick to join you whenever you get a chance to watch it, but a blank screen for the movie club will never do. Time for more baseball movies and soppy romances.

    Cathy, what should you like to see?

  6. Hmm.. Baseball and soppy romance? I'll have to think about it a little. ;)

  7. Well, you're not limited to those. Football movies would be fair game, certainly.

    : )

  8. Oh, dear.

    The only football movie I can remember having seen is The Longest Yard, with Burt Reynolds, and i don't recall any romance in that.

    And I can't decide between The Natural and Bull Durham -- neither of which I've seen, but both of which get intriguingly mixed reviews.

    So I'll go with Moonstruck.


  9. I can't believe you've seen "The Longest Yard".

    In "Heaven Can Wait" Warren Beatty took a story of questionable selling quality, added a bit of humor and a fun romance, and made a success of it. He did that project right before he did "Reds".

    "The Natural" I enjoyed a great deal. I was watching Billy Crystal speaking of it once, and he was referring to the final locker room scene, where the Knights are going in to their final game, needing to win it to realize the life long dream of winning the pennant, star player Roy Hobbs has been out hospitalized, Pop Fisher is lamenting not taking his father's advice of being a farmer, and Roy shows up and says, "My dad always wanted me to be a baseball player". I had no idea why that would have such resonance for a comedian, until I saw Crystal's tribute film to Mickey Mantle, Roger Maris and the 1961 Yankees, titled "*61".

    Yes, those all would be fun to visit in the future, but as for now, a delightful show about families, the warm peculiarities so often seen in Italian Americans, and who would ever have believed that it could all be pulled off by pop singer Cher? Well, she was great in it. I'm really looking forward to enjoying once again "Moonstruck".

    Should be up in a day.

  10. I love this film. I have watched it dozens of times, will watch it many more. Classic dialogue, fabulous actors, amazing music. Favorite scenes: Whit and Joe arrive at Jeff's Acapulco hotel; the scene at Club Sterling; Jeff arrives at a 'black and tan' to interrogate Cathy's maid (btw, trumpet player is the great Gerald Wilson); final scene with Whit and Cathy at Whit's place; Jeff and Fisher visit Whit; have I left anything out? LOL. Fantastic film, just fantastic.

  11. Isn't it? Those are all great scenes. I love the dialogue, and Mitchum's narrative is great. I'm always hoping he'll pull it out in the end. I love it when he first meets with Whit and Joe, and Stephanos is ready to blow a gasket, and Jeff just sits there taking it all in. Whit and Jeff are playing a faster game then Stephanos and Fisher. Whit! "Why is he talking?!" Whit showing up at Jeff's door in Acapulco was dynamite, or Jeff trying to tip off Eels, or Jeff just talking with his street wise cabbie buddy. I really loved the opening where Jeff is just fishing and talking with Ann. Yes, it was a great one.

    Thanks for stopping by!