Film Reviews by MD

Welcome to MD's film reviews page. MD has written 8 reviews and rated 7 films.

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Jigsaw

Excellent Murder Mystery

(Edit) 27/02/2016

It's a fairly good recommendation,if Halliwell's Film Guide gives you a star award.Well Jigsaw has two stars.

Not surprisingly.It's good in every endeavour,and is equal to Val Guest's other 1961 offering The Day the Earth Caught Fire.

There is no let up in the way the story moves forward,not a single moment is wasted or doesn't contain a wry bit of humour,or telling comment.

Very cinematic,superbly acted and directed.A Taut,tense excellently tailored murder mystery.

4 out of 4 members found this review helpful.

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Revenge

If The Carry On Frachise had a Lower Self,this is it

(Edit) 24/02/2016

A slice of 1971,and a melodrama examining (in not to much detail,fortunately) the instabilities within a family beset by tragedy.

This was easy viewing,not the somber coming to terms with the loss of a child,or the seedy probing of a paedophile.No,that is all relegated in favour of domestic

disharmony and an almost comedic take on the manner in which a sellotaped together family incompetently deals with a bad choice of dispensing a form of crude justice against the man who is not charged with their daughter's murder.

This is probably as serious as you might expect from Carry On Producer Peter Rogers.It's acted efficiently by James Booth and Joan Collins (still looking glamourous peeling potatoes). Sidney Hayers probably needed all his experience to ensure it did'nt quite collapse into farce.

Very enjoyable from a certain perspective,with a good early 70's backdrop.

2 out of 2 members found this review helpful.

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Tread Softly Stranger

Diana Dors at her height

(Edit) 18/01/2016

This is a classic British Crime Drama which thankfully doesn't take it self too seriously.

By this I mean it lacks the kind of intensity that makes some films difficult to watch.

All of the lead actors take things in their stride,whilst Diana Dors is at her smouldering best.

Terence Morgan's performance is wonderfully over the top,and George Baker's easy going cool and confident manner

is never less than pleasing to watch.

The script is almost formula,hitting every dramatically contrived marker and the trick ending can be seen coming a mile off.

But let none of this put you off.It's 91 mins well spent,and the B/W photography is very atmospheric.

0 out of 0 members found this review helpful.

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Echo of Diana / Shadow of Fear

A pleasant couple of hours

(Edit) 18/01/2016

These short 60 min features are straightforward and pleasant.

Both have good stories and the acting is accomplished.

Each one has an element of mystery and they are filmed against some good old

60's locations.Sometimes I love these films for this reason alone.

It was interesting to see that the Clarehaven Hotel and the surrounding area in Bognor Regis looks exactly the same now as it

did in 1963 when Shadow of Fear was made.

0 out of 0 members found this review helpful.

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Undercover Girl / Undercover Agent

Undercover Girl is hilarious The better film is Undercover Agent

(Edit) 18/01/2016

Undercover Girl

Rather silly and badly handeled.

Acting is poor.Direction by Francis Searle is non existent.He probably thought if the script writer can't be so bothered why should I.

The dialogue must have been put together by a monkey less loose on a typewriter and oh dear Jackie Collins,was really such a hopeless actress,you can appreciate why she decided to try her hand at writing.

On the other hand Undercover Agent has a much better cast,passes the time easily and provides a few laughs.

Again a nice 1950's period piece.

0 out of 0 members found this review helpful.

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So Long At The Fair

A classic from Britain's great film heritage

(Edit) 17/04/2014

I have never recalled ever watching "So Long at the Fair" on television as I was growing up or indeed anytime afterwards.This was,quite frankly a surprise,but all the more pleasurable now having seen it,as it only confirmed my feelings about how good many films are from our cinematic past.Then it was all about story and character,backed by solid directing,cinematography and editing.

Made in 1950,"So Long at the Fair" has a basic narrative structure ,supported by the very best of Film craftsmanship.

Terence Fisher (later synonomous with the great Hammer Films) stages the action in his unique style and appreciation of the film frame.

True, the plot,does have one obvious hole in the middle,but in spite of this the combination of all the other top quality elements,plus the added bonus of two young British actors at the beginning of their careers,more than make up for this irregularity.

A classic British Film.An hour and a half well spent.

1 out of 1 members found this review helpful.

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The Beauty Jungle

Rating due to Aspect Ratio not to content

(Edit) 10/04/2014

The Beauty Jungle,so I have read,is a decent British film from the early sixties about the perils of the catwork for unsuspecting young ladies.

That is about as much as I can say.Why ? Because apart from the opening credits the film is a pan and scan 1.33:1 travesty of an original cinemascope presentation of 2.35:1.which totally wreck's the film's compositional integrity.

Shame really,as as soon as the credit sequence finished I stopped watching.

OAR's should not be a problem these days.Not a fault of Cinema Paradiso of course who clearly state this in the DVD details.Much to my chagrin I did not expect the film to be in Cinemascope.

No ! The fault lies squarely at the feet of ITV Studios,who, as a major player should have known this,and treated the release properly.

0 out of 1 members found this review helpful.

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Deadfall

I'll give Deadfall 2 stars for good Spanish Locations and the odd character interchnage

(Edit) 09/04/2014

A 1968 Cat Burglar's questionable liaison with a husband and wife team,negotiating homosexually,adultery and death,with a spoonful of half hearted family incest thrown in for good measure,sounds enticing.

In fact it's dreary,dull and repetitive.with all participants walking around in a state of stupor,barely raising a smile.

Your'e left wondering when it's actually going to start.Unfortunately it remains persistently in the slow lane.Nothing wrong with that in principle,except in other respects the enterprise is directed with an amateurish, unassured hand,with a complete lack of imagination.A decent short back and sides is also in order.

To be honest the only thing going for Deadfall are the decent Spanish locations,and a couple of pieces of challenging dialogue between Cain and Portman.,

0 out of 1 members found this review helpful.