Moulin Rouge (1952) John Huston

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   John Huston’s 1952 film about the life of the great French artist, Henri Marie Raymond de Toulouse-Lautrec-Monfa, more commonly known as Henri Toulouse-Lautrec was nominated for seven Academy Awards including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor and Best Supporting Actress (Colette Marchand). It won two Oscars for Best Costume Design and Best Art Direction. Surprisingly, cinematographer Oswald Morris, received no recognition since one of the film’s highlights is its brilliant use of color.  Today, when you talk to someone about a film called Moulin Rouge, they assume you’re referring to the 2001 Baz Luhrmann musical. Huston’s film, while maybe not forgotten,  is generally not discussed much. It’s a shame because there is much to admire. Continue reading

Silver Screenings Review of Lessons in the Dark.

Ruth Kerr of Silver Screenings has just posted a wonderful review of my new e-book LESSONS IN THE DARK.  Click on the link is below to read.

The Cool Kids’ Guide to Classic Film

The book is available at Amazon!

http://www.amazon.com/Lessons-Dark-John-Greco-ebook/dp/B01CC0TWLS/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

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Watching The Godfather Epic

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   Over the last several days I have been watching the approximately 423 minute version of The Godfather and The Godfather 2 entitled The Godfather Epic. It’s a re-edited version of the first two films in chronological order with some deleted footage included.  The Godfather Epic was originally released in 1990 as a box set on VHS. A similar version, running slightly longer at 434 minutes, known as The Godfather: The Complete Novel for Television, aka The Godfather Saga was broadcast on NBC back in November 1977.[1] As mentioned, both versions include scenes not in the final films such as  Michael’s first meeting with his father after returning from Sicily and Sonny’s taking charge of the family after his father was severely shot in an attempted assassination. In total, the Novel for Television/Saga included approximately 75 minutes of unseen footage. Since it was made for broadcast television some scenes of violence and nudity were trimmed to meet the commercial TV standards of the day. Continue reading

Gordon Parks and Leadbelly

Leadbelly movieMy latest post is on my new blog. It’s film related yet it is not. The blog itself is new and basically is my writing on topics other than film. This subject is a kind of a crossover. Take a look at other posts and if you like, give it a follow. The link is below.

https://johngrecoblog.wordpress.com/2016/03/10/gordon-parks-and-leadbelly/

 

Condemned by the Catholic Church on TCM

stupidTCM is highlighting this month films condemned by the Catholic Legion of Decency. Every Thursday evening the obscene, the objectionable and just plain indecent will be highlighted. The special guest introducing the films is Sister Rose Pacatte, a Catholic nun. The cinematic quality of the films vary. But of course quality was not the point. It was more about the unsavory aspects; the lewdness, the immorality and suggestiveness. When you watch some of these films today you wonder what the big deal was. Continue reading

Lessons in the Dark – Now Available

My latest e-book, Lessons in the Dark, is now available exclusively at Amazon. com. Why Lessons? Simply because watching movies for me has always been more than just entertainment. It was art, history and it was education. I have found many classic (old) films to still be  relevant to our lives today.  For example, my father always talked about how tough it was growing up during  The Great Depression. However, it was not until I watched films like Wild Boys of the Road and The Grapes of Wrath  that I truly began to understand what it was like. I also came to see how today many of these old films have remained relevant to our society and can teach us not to repeat our mistakes.

In this book I  have compiled a series of essays on films that reflect one or more of these themes. I hope you enjoy.  Below is a link to Amazon.

http://www.amazon.com/Lessons-Dark-John-Greco-ebook/dp/B01CC0TWLS/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

Book Cover Lessons in the Dark Final Final

Once a Thief (1965) Ralph Nelson

Thief7   The first time I saw Once a Thief was back in 1965. It was at a third tier theater called the Harbor located in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. Why do I remember this? Most likely, because watching the film back then, with a non-critical eye, I just liked it. I always liked crime films and having already discovered Cagney, Bogart and Garfield on TV it seemed like a pretty good fit. It may have also had something to do with Ann-Margret who for a few years in the sixties I possibly had a crush on. Well, alright I did have a crush on her! Can you blame me? If I remember correctly, every time I saw an Ann-Margret film back in those days I had to spend extra time in the confessional revealing a few additional impure thoughts. If case you were wondering I never mentioned her name to the priest. I don’t kiss and tell, not even in my dreams.  Anyway, enough confessional time. Back to the show. Continue reading