Saturday, June 11, 2016

Second rate movies

I love to watch old movies.  But once in a while you find yourself watching a real stinker.  How you can tell:

1.  The sets are crummy, look like they are made of cardboard, but the picture is really dark so you can't tell.

2.  All the police are old, way too old to serve on a police force.  Imagine one of these senior citizens chasing a criminal!  He would drop dead of a heart attack after the first 60 seconds.

3.Much staged business around smoking.  Like this:  "Mind if I smoke?"  "No, have one of mine."  "No thanks, I have my own.."  "Nice cigarette case."   "Got a light?"  "Thanks,"  Cigarette is lighted, and both characters inhale pensively, followed by silent contemplation as they stare at one another.  This interaction takes a minute or two, advancing the action not at all.  Unless the book of matches comes from a suspicious source, in which case the mystery is solved.  This action can be varied by offers of cigars, fussing around fiddling with pipes, or scrutiny of cigarette butts in an ashtray with lipstick on them.

4.  Similarly, but not as frequently, pouring and consumption of drinks, which are always on a handy table, complete with seltzer bottle, glassware, and a bucket of ice.  Drinks don't take as much time as smoking, so are less frequently deployed.

5.  Final scene, when the murderer is about to murder the heroine, so the police chief orders "Calling all cars," and all the elderly cops get in their cars and drive madly around, sirens screaming.

Now you know.

1 comment:

Dick Stanley said...

No. 5 is very modern. It's the origin of the phrase: When seconds count, the cops are minutes away. Or in the case of Orlando, hours.