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The Films of Richard Pryor: A Second Look

Richard Pryor is widely regarded as the greatest stand-up comic, yet his film output was erratic and he often showed himself to be a better dramatic actor than a movie funnyman. On this episode of “The Online Movie Show,” ArmchairCinema.com’s Jerry Dean Roberts discusses Pryor’s strange but often invigorating film career.

The episode can be heard here.

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The Holocaust and the Cinema

In the aftermath of World War II, filmmakers have been challenged to capture the depth and scope of the Holocaust in narrative and documentary productions. On this episode of “The Online Movie Show,” Rich Brownstein, author of the new book “Holocaust Cinema Complete,” offers insight on this difficult subject.

The episode can be heard here.

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The Bootleg Files: Sadie Hawkins Day

BOOTLEG FILES 784: “Sadie Hawkins Day” (1944 animated short based on Al Capp’s “Li’l Abner” comic strip).

LAST SEEN: On YouTube.

AMERICAN HOME VIDEO:
On VHS.

REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: A film that fell through the cracks.

CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE: Only if someone restores the full series of animated shorts.

In 1934, Al Capp introduced the comic strip “Li’l Abner” that offered sharp satirical humor within the setting of a burlesque of Appalachian subculture – or what an earlier generation unapologetically referred to as hillbillies. Capp’s work quickly caught the favor of the newspaper-reading public and the characters and backwoods catchphrases that populated the comic strip quickly became fixtures in pop culture.
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The Honeymooners Specials: A Christmas Carol [DVD]

During the mid-1970s, Jackie Gleason revived “The Honeymooners” franchise for a series of four television specials. This 1977 production finds Ralph Kramden somehow getting himself recruited as the director of his bus company’s holiday season play, an adaptation of “A Christmas Carol.” With Ed Norton as his assistant director and their wives Alice and Trixie shanghaied into the cast, one can hear the chaos coming from a mile away.
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The Bootleg Files: Summer Daze

BOOTLEG FILES 783: “Summer Daze” (1932 short comedy starring Karl Dane and George K. Arthur).

LAST SEEN: On YouTube.

AMERICAN HOME VIDEO: None.

REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: A film that fell through the cracks.

CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE: Unlikely.

In 1926, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer cast two of its character actors, Karl Dane and George K. Arthur, in comic relief supporting roles in the film “Bardelys the Magnificent.” The actors were not teamed for this production, but someone in the studio came up with the idea of pairing the tall and gangly Dane with the diminutive Arthur in an Army comedy called “Rookies,” which was released to great popularity in 1927.
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Can We Talk About Joan Rivers?

Joan Rivers could have a major force in movies, but she somehow never found her niche despite several attempts from both sides of the camera. Actor/writer Joe Mannetti offers his insight in this episode of “The Online Movie Show” podcast, which details Joan’s highs, lows and missed opportunities in the movie world.

The episode can be heard here.