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Showing posts from February, 2016

The Big Sleep

I’ve been watching a lot of Humphrey Bogart movies lately, a mini-kick if you will. Bogart was sort of the earliest idea of a classic Hollywood star I ever had. Everyone, to a certain degree, has an awareness of “Casablanca” (and if you don’t, go watch it now), so he’s always been floating around in the national conciseness. I think part of the reason too was the numerous times Bogart was characterized in Looney Tunes cartoons that were a huge part of my childhood. My love for movies goes way back, and one of the first classics—after having watching as many Marx Brothers movies as I could get my hands on—I ever saw was 1946’s “The Big Sleep,” based the book of the same name by Raymond Chandler. 
“The Big Sleep” is a quintessential Film Noir, by one of the great American directors, Howard Hawks. Bogart plays Phillip Marlowe in the movie, a private eye hired by an aging general to look after some gambling debts one of his daughters has raked up. Now that’s all I will share, if you want t…

Visual Wonders: Small Hobos and Murder

Two recent releases from Warner Archive made their way to my desk. If you’re unaware, Warner Archive is a branch of Warner Home Video that is dedicated to web only sales of the deepest of the deep in the Warner Brothers vault. Largely comprised of classic films, Warner Archive issues long out of print (and sometimes never ever in print) films and TV series on new masters to made on demand DVD, and they’ve even added Blu-Ray to their line up as well. It’s a film lover’s dream come true. This week, I’ll be talking about a DVD and a Blu-Ray. A funky little family picture dug up from their vaults, along with a cornerstone of Film Noir brought forth to Blu-Ray for the very first time. 1958’s “The Littlest Hobo” & 1945’s “Murder, My Sweet.” 
There’s a lot of strange elements to “The Littlest Hobo.” While watching the film it felt at times like a strange mix of Lassie, Homeward Bound, and an episode of Dragnet. It’s a film whose lead actor is a dog, and there’s no overdubbing of dialog on…