Year in Film: 1961

Five Minutes to Live

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Who would have thought that Johnny Cash ever acted in a movie, that he played a psychotic criminal, and that he was actually good? Cash, who was a rising star in the popular music scene at the time, appears in this low budget crime pic as Johnny Cabot, a ruthless, guitar-strumming thief who calmly shoots […]


Read Homicidal

By 1961, William Castle had gotten used to living in the shadow of Alfred Hitchcock. When the Englishman launched his highly-successful TV program, “Alfred Hitchcock Presents” in 1955, his cult of personality was complete, as the director’s already well-known profile became known to millions of Americans, and his droll host segments in each episode made […]

Mr. Sardonicus

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I first heard about Mr. Sardonicus when I watched a short documentary about William Castle, and already knew the gimmick that Castle, the King of Gimmicks, used to promote this film. Just before the ending of the film, Castle himself appears on the screen to conduct a “punishment poll”, supposedly counting glow-in-the-dark cards with a […]

One Hundred and One Dalmatians

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The first few minutes of One Hundred and One Dalmatians completely bowled me over. Since I have been watching all of the Disney films in chronological order, I have been able to see the evolution of the studio’s animation style. The roughness of movement and line apparent in Snow White were soon smoothed out. By the […]

Random Quote

“I'm looking for someone to share in an adventure.”
-Gandalf (Ian McKellen)
from The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey