I sat down at my keyboard thinking I'd rant about a movie I hadn't seen, Suicide Squad, which is getting disappointing reviews. It seems to me that Warner Brothers is damaging its own DC Comics brand by insisting on releasing under-developed movies devaluing character for spectacle. But maybe their brand is spectacle. While spectacle alone soon becomes boring, maybe Warner Bros doesn't care. After all, a new sucker is born every minute.
So, anyway, instead of ranting about that, I'll co-opt this post to talk about some movies I have seen.
66. (1004.) Marihuana (1936)
TCM played this in a block between two other 1930s anti-drug propaganda I had already seen, Reefer Madness and Cocaine Fiends. They're all chock full o' overwrought ridiculousness, and therein lies their enduring charm. In this "true story," a joint leads to nude frolicking leads to unwanted pregnancy leads to a criminal empire. Lesson learned!
67. (1005.) Finian's Rainbow (1968)
This Francis Ford Coppola directed musical was Fred Astaire's last. It's not a great note to go out on. The leprechaun is a highlight, but Keenan Wynn in blackface — though well-intentioned — isn't very engaging, the dancing seems poorly framed, and the music is unmemorable.
68. (1006.) Trenchcoat (1983)
This spy comedy/thriller starring Margot Kidder, begs comparison to Cloak & Dagger, which was released a year after this film. They're both iterations of the "unwitting innocent drawn into a world of spies" trope with very similar villains. Both seem naive, though that's likely a side effect of their attempt to reach a younger target audience. It had its moments, but I can't say I recommend it.
More to come.