Monday, October 31, 2011

Now, Voyager (5 stars)

Now, Voyager, the beautiful, bittersweet, romantic drama from 1942, is not only my favorite Bette Davis film, it's my all-time favorite romantic film...AND my all-time favorite film...period.  I absolutely LOVE Now, Voyager and am utterly shocked that I haven't already reviewed it here.  Boy, have I been remiss!!

Starring along with Bette in this beautiful, tender movie is Paul Henreid, with Claude Rains and Gladys Cooper in supporting roles.  It's the story of Charlotte Vale, an ugly, awkward, middle-aged spinster, who is on the verge of a nervous breakdown.

At the request of Charlotte's sister-in-law, and against the wishes of Charlotte's extremely controlling mother, renowned psychiatrist Dr. Jaquith (Claude Rains) makes a visit to the Vale home.  What he witnesses astounds him---Charlotte is publicly put down and shamed by her mother and mocked by her niece.  She is insecure...withdrawn...paranoid.  In fact, Charlotte is extremely close to falling completely apart, a result of the disapproval, criticism, and humiliation that have been upon her for years.  Wanting to help her, Dr. Jaquith suggests that Charlotte spend some time at Cascade, his mountain sanitarium.

After several weeks at Cascade, and not wanting to return home to her mother, at Dr. Jacquith's suggestion, Charlotte embarks on a trans-Atlantic cruise.  (The first view of the transformed Charlotte is breathtaking---she has lost weight, no longer wears glasses, and is elegantly dressed.)

While on the cruise, Charlotte meets architect Jerry Durence (Paul Henreid), and the two fall deeply in's a love that does wonders for Charlotte, causing her to blossom and gain confidence.    Unfortunately, Jerry is married, so there can be no future for him and Charlotte.  Or can there?

After the cruise, the now-beautiful and confident Charlotte returns to her Boston home and to the disapproval of her mother.  While other family members are thrilled with the changes in Charlotte, her mother is furious.  Telling Charlotte that she has never done anything to make her mother proud, and threatening to cut off her allowance, Mrs. Vale continues to try to manipulate and control Charlotte as she has done for years.  But Charlotte is a stronger, more confident woman, and for the first time in her life, she stands up to her mother and refuses to be guilt-tripped into doing what her mother wants her to do. 

Eventually, needing some time away, Charlotte returns to Cascade, where she meets young Tina...Jerry's younger daughter...a troubled, insecure young woman with whom Charlotte can empathize.  In reaching out to Tina, Charlotte feels that she has a part of Jerry for her very own.

Now, Voyager, for me the most romantic movie of all time, is a totally gorgeous film which moves me deeply and always brings me to tears.  It's a beautiful story, one to which I can somewhat relate, so I'm sure that is why it touches me so much.  Bette, who gives her usual brilliant performance, is amazing to watch as she transforms from the dowdy, insecure spinster into a beautiful, confident woman.  Truly, her transformation is stunning, and it always brings tears to my eyes.

Paul Henreid is totally fantastic in this role.  Besides his wonderful European accent, which I find romantic and sexy, he has this habit of putting two cigarettes in his mouth, lighting them both, then handing one to Charlotte.  I'm not a smoker, but I find that gesture gallant and romantic.  It adds so much to the romance of the film.  The chemistry between him and Bette is spectacular.

The musical score in Now, Voyager is probably the most beautiful musical score I have ever heard...just one more reason that this film is my absolute all-time favorite movie.  And the final line in the film---"Don't let's ask for the moon, we have the stars"---is one of my all-time favorite movie lines.  Here is a video clip of the movie's final scene, which includes not only the beautiful music but also those bittersweet words. (You can't view the actual video from here, but just click the "watch on you tube" link and you'll be is definitely a must-watch!)

Anyhow, I totally love Now, Voyager and cannot recommend it highly enough. It's out on DVD (as part of The Bette Davis Collection Volume One), so it should be very easy to track down.  Additionally, TCM will be airing it on November 10th at 10:45 p.m.  It would make a fantastic "chick flick" movie.

Happy viewing!!   

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Heaven Can Wait (3 stars)

Heaven Can Wait, from 1943, is a light romantic comedy starring Don Ameche, Gene Tierney, and Charles Coburn.  It was really hard to classify this film into any particular genre---there was an element of romance...there were some lighthearted moments which brought chuckles (particularly involving the fabulous Charles Coburn)...there were also a few surprisingly touching moments which actually made me teary-eyed. 

Henry Van Cleve (Don Ameche), recently departed this life at about 70 years of age, presents himself before the devil.  Sure that his earthly behavior would never allow him access to "the upstairs," Henry stands before the keeper of "down there," expecting immediate access.  He is told, however, that in order to enter "down there," he must meet the requirements.  Can Henry relate a crime he has committed, the devil asks him?  No, Henry cannot think of a crime; however, he begins to reflect back on a lifetime of relationships with women.

Beginning with his mother (the always-delightful Spring Byington) and then his French tutor, Henry relates how he has always had quite the way with women.  When, at age 25, he falls in love with his cousin's fiance, Martha (Gene Tierney), he causes a family scandal by stealing the woman away as his own bride.  However, fond of women as he is, Henry has extra-marital affairs, causing the long-suffering Martha to leave him after ten years of marriage.  Though she ultimately forgives him and returns to him, Martha is never quite certain of Henry's faithfulness.  It is for these behaviors that Henry believes the devil will allow him access to "down there."

So where exactly does Henry end up?  Upstairs?  Or "down there?"  That question will be answered by the end of this sweet film.  As I said earlier, this movie made me teary-eyed three different times...not sure why, because it's certainly not a tearjerker.  I just found it touching.

Heaven Can Wait, which is in color, gave Don Ameche the chance to age 50 years.  At first, he's his normal, quite good-looking self, then there's a touch of gray at the temples, and then, finally, he is nearly bald.  I think the makeup people did a very good job of aging him.

This film is out on DVD so it should be fairly easy to track down.  It's also available through Net Flix instant viewing and in several parts on You Tube.   It's a lighthearted, entertaining 110 minutes, so I hope you get a chance to see this.  Happy viewing!!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

The Lusty Men (3 stars)

The Lusty Men, from 1952, is a mild western drama directed by Nicholas Ray, and starring Susan Hayward, Robert Mitchum, and Arthur Kennedy.  By my own admission, I have little tolerance for fact, I recently turned off The Wild Bunch, which stars two of my top three guys---William Holden and Robert Ryan---after watching for only an hour.  I just don't really enjoy Westerns; however, I keep forcing myself to try them since several of my "loves" have alot of that genre in their filmography.  Hopefully, one day I will acquire a taste for Westerns.  At any rate, I would classify The Lusty Men as extremely mild in the Western department; really, it's more of a rodeo cowboy drama.

After an injury sidetracks his career, rodeo cowboy Jeff McCloud (Robert Mitchum) ventures back to his Texas hometown, where he meets Louise and Wes Merritt (Susan Hayward and Arthur Kennedy), who live and work on one of the local ranches.  Wanting a spread of their own, Wes and Louise have been saving their pennies for two years, but they are still a long way from buying the ranch they have their heart set on.  So, hoping to come into some quick and easy money, Wes convinces Jeff to teach him to ride rodeo.

Louise, totally against Wes's desire to take up rodeo, is furious with Jeff for agreeing to help him, and she becomes even more furious when, not long afterwards, Wes quits his ranch job and goes on tour with the rodeo.  Although she tries to get Jeff to see that riding rodeo is not a stable profession, all Wes can see is the big money he could possibly make.  Telling Louise that he will only rodeo until he has made enough money for the ranch they want, and promising Jeff half of his earnings as pay for the instruction he gave, Wes jumps into the wild world of the rodeo circuit.

As Wes becomes more successful, he is blinded by the money he is making.  He no longer wants to buy a ranch, and he no longer wants to keep giving "handouts" to broken down old cowboy Jeff.  As Wes and Louise's marriage begins to crumble, Jeff, in love with Louise and wanting to prove his own worth, signs on for a rodeo ride he is not at all trained to make. 

I actually enjoyed this film.  No, it wasn't spectacular, but it was interesting and entertaining.  Plus, it stars the fabulous Susan Hayward---she is the reason I wanted to watch this film in the first place.  She's my #2 gal, and I have never seen her give a bad performance.  I think Hayward, Mitchum, Kennedy, or rodeo fans will enjoy this movie.  I don't think it's out on DVD, but I know TCM airs it quite often. 

Happy viewing!!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

The Woman on Pier 13 (3 stars)

The Woman on Pier 13, from 1950, is a film noir starring Laraine Day and my new #3 guy, Robert Ryan.  It's an interesting film, and it gives Ryan the opportunity to play a likeable guy...something he didn't often get to do. 

Brad Collins (Ryan), a shipping company executive, and his new wife Nan (Day) have just returned home from their honeymoon when a reporter comes to Brad with a story of how Brad's name is really Frank Johnson and that he was a Communist Party member before moving to California.  Though Brad at first denies the allegations, there is no escaping the truth.  Years before, he had been a Communist, but after seeing the error of his ways, he left the party, changed his name, and moved across the country.  Brad is told, though, that it is impossible for him to ever leave the party---they won't let him go---and after he witnesses the torture and murder of a man, Brad realizes he is stuck.

Although Brad is willing to come clean with his employer about his unwise youthful actions, the Party makes clear that they have evidence tying Brad to a murder that was committed several years earlier.  There is no way out for Brad; he will have to do what the Party tells him to do, which is to create problems between the shipping company and the labor unions...all the while trying to keep his past actions hidden from his wife. 

Is Brad able to get free from the pressure of the Communists?  Is he able to finally leave Frank Johnson behind and really be the Brad Collins he longs to be?  Is he able to keep the truth hidden from his wife?  And if his wife finds out, will she still love him?  These are the questions that will play out in the remainder of this film.

I definitely enjoyed this movie; it was interesting and entertaining AND it starred the very under-rated Robert Ryan, who I am becoming more and more crazy about.  I've only seen Laraine Day in about three or four movies, but I like her---I think she's quite lovely and sweet.  This film is out on DVD, so I think it should be fairly easy to track it down.

Happy viewing!!  

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Red Light (3 stars)

Red Light, from 1949, is a mildly suspenseful crime-drama/film noir starring George Raft, Virginia Mayo, and Raymond Burr.  The film begins inside a prison, where inmate Nick (Raymond Burr) vows vengeance on the man who put him behind bars---Johnny Torno (George Raft), the employer from whom he had been embezzling.  When Nick learns that Johnny's younger brother, Jess, a priest just returned from chaplain duty in the army, is back in town, he realizes that the best way to exact revenge on Johnny is to have Jess killed.  Since Jess is the person Johnny is closest to, his death will devastate him, which is exactly what Nick wants.

Nick's plan takes shape, and as Jess is alone in a hotel room one day, he is shot several times.  When Johnny arrives at the hotel, he discovers a dying Jess lying on the floor and, vowing revenge, asks Jess who did it.  With his final breath, Jess responds that it is "written in the Bible."  After searching Jess's own Bible for several days and not finding any information, Johnny is sure that Jess must have meant the Gideon's Bible from the hotel room.  That Bible, however, is missing, so Johnny tracks down every person who has occupied that particular room since the night of the murder.

One of the room's occupants was Carla North (Virginia Mayo), who, also, knows the pain of losing a brother she loved dearly.  Carla is willing to help Johnny track down the Bible, but when it appears that Johnny's desire for vengeance has taken over his entire being, she tries to get him to see that vigilante justice is unacceptable.  Johnny, however, can't let it matter what he has to do, he is determined to find the Bible, discover the name Jess wrote down, and then make that man pay.

Is Johnny ever able to track down the Bible he is seeking?  Does it provide the information he is looking for?  Can Johnny let go of his hatred and desire for vengeance?  These are the questions that will play out in this interesting and enjoyable film.

As a Perry Mason fan, it is always a bit strange for me to see Raymond Burr in these kinds of roles.  In that beloved TV show, he's always on the right side of the law; however, what I'm discovering, is that his movie roles often have him portraying the lawbreakers.  Virginia Mayo is lovely, as always, but she really doesn't have much to do in this film.  And George Raft, the man whose career might have been huge had he not passed on certain roles that ended up going to Humphrey Bogart, is quite good in this strong, "I'll do it my way" role.  I do hope you get a chance to see this film.

Happy viewing!!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The Young Savages (3 stars)

The Young Savages, from 1961, is a crime-drama starring Burt Lancaster, with Dina Merrill and Shelley Winters taking on supporting roles.  It's kind of a social message movie, in that it deals with the issue of juvenile delinquency and ethnic gang violence.

Action in the film begins immediately, as three teenage gang members approach a rival gangmember and stab him to death.  Since there were several eyewitnesses to the killing, the boys are quickly apprehended by the police and taken into custody.  They claim the killing was self-defense...that the victim had pulled a knife on them.  However, since the victim was blind, their story is not believed; add to that, with the victim being Puerto Rican and the suspects being Italian, it is believed that the killing was motivated solely by ethnic hatred.

Hank Bell (Burt Lancaster) is the attorney prosecuting the case, and his idea is to go for first degree murder.  Having grown up in the Italian neighborhood of the suspects, Hank soon discovers that one of the boys is the son of his former girlfriend, Mary DiPace (Shelley Winters), and Mary is absolutely convinced that her son, Danny, did not kill anyone.  She begs Hank to look for evidence that would prove Danny's innocence.  Now Hank is between a rock and a hard place, because the victim's neighborhood expects a conviction, as does the D.A.  For Hank to discover evidence revealing Danny didn't do it would further ignite the tensions that already exist between the two gangs...but all Hank wants is the truth.

So what is the truth?  Did the blind youth really pull a knife on the three young men?  Or are they just making that story up?  Is Danny innocent?  These are the questions that play out in the balance of the film.

The Young Savages is an interesting, hard-hitting drama, which, as I said, gets the action going immediately.  There is certainly no boredom in this film, which is available on DVD, as part of the John Frankenheimer Collection.  Incidentally, just to make clear, if you read the brief synopsis of this film on TCM, you will be expecting something totally different.  The write-up says:  "DA suspects one of the delinquents he's prosecuting for murder is his son."  That is totally misleading, as there is never any indication that one of the boys is Bell's son, nor does he even suspect it.

Anyhow, happy viewing!!!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Castle on the Hudson (3 stars)

Castle on the Hudson, from 1940, is a gritty prison drama starring John Garfield, with Ann Sheridan and Pat O'Brien taking on supporting roles.  It is a remake of the 1932 film, 20,000 Years in Sing Sing, which stars Spencer Tracy and Bette Davis. 

John Garfield plays Tommy Gordon, who, as the film begins, is convicted of robbery and sentenced to fifteen years at Sing Sing Prison.  Sure that his "bosses" will quickly spring him, Tommy arrives at the prison arrogant, feisty, and uncooperative.  He refuses to wear his uniform, which is too big, and he also refuses to work.   Prison warden Long (Pat O'Brien), whose ideas about running a prison are a bit off of mainstream, doesn't force Tommy to do anything; rather, he allows time alone to do its job of making Tommy a bit more cooperative. 

Tommy's girlfriend, Kay (Ann Sheridan), visits Tommy at the prison, informing him that one of his old buddies is pressuring the "bosses" into springing him.  In reality, though, the buddy isn't helping at all---he just wants Kay to think he is.  Really, he's after Kay, so he wants Tommy out of the picture---the longer Tommy is in prison, the more time the buddy has to pursue Kay.

Meanwhile, a group of inmates is planning a break-out, and while Tommy originally planned to go along with them, a look at the calendar changes his mind.  With the break-out scheduled for Saturday---Tommy's unlucky day---he is just too superstitious to join in, so although his cell door is unlocked, Tommy remains within and doesn't take part in the attempted break-out.

As it turns out, Tommy's fears are right-on; tipped off about the break-out attempt, the guards are ready and the rebellion is put down.  When Warden Long realizes that Tommy's cell was unlocked, yet he didn't attempt to break-out, he begins to trust Tommy.  Therefore, when the warden is informed that Kay is near death, he allows Tommy a furlough to go see her, making him promise that he will return to the prison that night.  Tommy promises he will return, but will he?  Will Tommy fulfill his word and return to prison after getting a taste of freedom? 

Castle on the Hudson is a well-acted, interesting film.  While I would give both this film and the original 3 stars, I actually prefer this one just a bit more, and that is because of John Garfield.  Spencer Tracy was good in the role of Tommy; however, I think Garfield was fabulous at portraying these kinds of hardened, cocky, unlikeable characters.  This isn't a favorite Garfield film by any means, but I definitely enjoyed it.  Why not watch both this film and the original and see which one you prefer?

Happy viewing!!

Sunday, October 09, 2011

Born to Be Bad (4 stars)

I'm still on my Robert Ryan kick and will be for another few weeks, as there are close to a dozen of his films either already on my DVR or on my radar to record.   I am totally crazy about this man, who I think was one sensational actor.  He is easily at the very top of my favorite actor list...along with William Holden and Gary Cooper. All that to say, I will be reviewing several Robert Ryan films in the coming days.  If you aren't familiar with him, I hope my reviews will inspire you to see some of his works. 

Born to Be Bad, from 1950, is a fabulously entertaining melodrama starring Joan Fontaine, Robert Ryan, and Zachary Scott.  Directed by Nicholas Ray, this film features Joan Leslie and Mel Ferrer in supporting roles.  From the very beginning, the "bad" in this film is Joan Fontaine.  In a dramatic turnabout from her vulnerable roles in Suspicion and Rebecca, in Born to Be Bad, she is a manipulating, riches-seeking, people-using schemer.

The niece of a publisher, orphaned Christabel Caine (Fontaine) arrives in town and worms her way into the party (and the life) of Donna Foster (Joan Leslie).  Donna is engaged to Curtis Carey (Zachary Scott), and Christabel very quickly seeks to undermine their relationship.

Though Christabel has caught the eye of novelist Nick Bradley (Robert Ryan), her eye is on the wealthy Mr. Carey.   Oh, she'll carry on with Nick and even tease him into thinking she loves him in return...

...but her whole goal is to snag Curtis for herself.  Lying, playing innocent, and hurting others matter little to Christabel.  As long as she gets what she wants, she doesn't care who she steps on or pushes out of the way.

Born to Be Bad is a very interesting, entertaining film, and I must admit, I enjoyed seeing Joan Fontaine take on this kind of role.  She was very good...not at all what I'm used to with her...but it was great to see her stretch.  The film is not out on DVD, though it is on VHS, so if you have a working VHS player, you can catch it that way.  Additionally, it is on TCM's January 30, 2012 schedule.

By the way, there is a 1934 film of the same name, which stars Loretta Young and Cary Grant.  I haven't seen that film (it's in my DVR waiting to be watched).  However, this 1950 film is not a remake of that.  They are two completely different films.

Anyhow, happy viewing!!!

Teenage Rebel (3 stars)

Teenage Rebel, from 1956, is a slightly sentimental comedy-drama starring Ginger Rogers and Michael Rennie.  They portray Nancy and Jay Fallon, who, along with their little boy, Larry, are preparing for a visit from Nancy's daughter, Dodie (played by Betty Lou Keim).  Since Nancy's ex-husband was awarded custody of their child and since he didn't comply with the visitation schedule, it has been eight years since Nancy has seen her daughter.  Dodie is no longer a little girl...she is now 15 years old...and she does not want to be called Dodie, preferring, instead, the more grown-up Dorothy.

Harboring ill feelings towards the mother she feels abandoned her and longing to be back home with her father, Dorothy is sulky and bad-tempered to everyone with whom she is in contact---Nancy, Jay, Larry, and the neighbor kids too.  She absolutely does not intend to make a go of things.  Even though Nancy tells Dorothy that she longs to build a relationship with her, Dorothy insists that will not happen---as far as she is concerned, her mother died eight years ago.

Will Nancy ever be able to convince Dorothy that she really does love her and that she always did?  Will Dorothy ever forgive her mother?  Will the two ever develop a mother/daughter relationship?  Those are the questions that play out in this sweet film.  Though it's called Teenage Rebel, the girl really is not rebellious---she's just hurt and lonely---so you don't have to fear an obnoxious brat in this film.

Ginger Rogers, who is my husband's #1 gal, is still looking mighty fine at this point in her career.  And she even gets an opportunity to strut her stuff a bit.  Ginger fans will definitely want to see this film. 

Happy viewing!!

Thursday, October 06, 2011

About Mrs. Leslie (5 stars)

It would appear that I am on a Robert Ryan kick right now, for I have watched three of his films in the last week, and I have a few others set up to record on TCM this month.  Since this very under-rated, underknown actor generally plays unlikeable or villainous characters, it's not often one is brought to tears in one of his films.  (Tender Comrade and Her Twelve Men are exceptions, though they only make me misty-eyed, not bring me to sobs.)  The film I watched last night, though, touched me deeply, and I was definitely sobbing.  That film, which I watched through Net Flix instant viewing, is About Mrs. Leslie, a touching 1954 romantic drama, which also stars Shirley Booth.

Kind-hearted Vivian Keeler (Booth), also known as Mrs. Leslie, runs a roominghouse in a suburban neighborhood.  Through flashbacks, we discover that years earlier she had been a singer in a nightclub.  At the club one night, she is introduced to the handsome, but rather quiet and reserved, George Leslie (Robert Ryan).  The two hit it off, and after sharing lunch the next day, George asks Vivian to accompany him on a 6-week vacation to California.  Vivian is concerned about the propriety of a trip with him, but he insists that it will just be as friends.  His job, as a high-powered businessman, takes alot out of him, so he needs the relaxation, and Vivian's companionship would add to his enjoyment of the vacation.

When Vivian arrives in California, the house servants refer to her as Mrs. Leslie, a mistake that neither she nor George correct.  True to his word that there are no strings attached, George shows Vivian to her own bedroom---a beautiful room overlooking the Pacific Ocean.  Their time together, as they fish, swim, and read, is totally platonic; however, it brings happiness to both of them, and it is with sorrow that they part ways a few weeks later.  Though they both cherish the time they had and hate to say goodbye, they promise to meet again for another 6-week vacation the following year.

In love with George, Vivian seeks to develop an interest in the things that interest him---namely, Civil War history---so that when they meet up the following year, she will be able to converse with him about the things he loves.  For his part, George cares deeply for Vivian and longs to see her settled financially.  At the end of their second vacation together, they again part with the promise to meet the following year.

Eventually, though, Vivian discovers that George is a married man and that his name is not even Leslie.  She is totally devastated by this and fully intends to never see him again.  When George realizes that Vivian has found out about him, he sets out to explain.  How it all plays out is the balance of the film. 

Tender and touching, About Mrs. Leslie is a definite tearjerker.  I adore Robert Ryan and really enjoyed the opportunity to see him in something more than his usual "heavy" roles.  He was quite believeable as the quiet, reserved George Leslie.  Without question, this is my favorite of Ryan's films.  Shirley Booth was wonderful in this heartbreaking role.  While she's not generally thought of as a romantic actress, don't let that put you off from this film.  I think the fact that she wasn't one of the "bombshell beauties" is what really makes this film work.  Her character is just an ordinary, unglamorous, unpretentious gal, and since that is exactly what Shirley Booth was, she was perfect in this role.  So, while Booth and Ryan may seem somewhat of an odd pairing, it definitely works beautifully in About Mrs. Leslie. 

I don't think this film is out on DVD; however, it is available through Net Flix instant viewing...or, perhaps, TCM will put it on their schedule one day soon.  Do try to catch it if you can...I think it's a must-see...and be sure to have the tissue box handy.

Happy viewing!!

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Alaska Seas (2 stars)

Alaska Seas, from 1954, is a crime-drama starring Robert Ryan, Jan Sterling, and Brian Keith.  This was a film I discovered in Net Flix instant viewing, solely because I was looking for Robert Ryan films, and I will be honest, Ryan is the only reason I watched until the end. 

The setting is a remote Alaskan fishing village in 1924.  Ne'er-do-well Matt Kelly (Ryan) has just finished serving a 6-month jail sentence for poaching seal skins.  Upon his release, Matt is handed a $920.60 bill from the local boat repairman; however, since Matt can't pay the bill, he sneaks off into the night, intent on returning to his home village and his old girlfriend, Nicki (Jan Sterling).

Matt's return home is met with contempt.  No one in the village likes or trusts him, and they don't want him joining in the fishing cooperative.  Add to that, Nicki, with whom Matt hopes to reconcile, is engaged---to Matt's old friend, Jim (Brian Keith).  Nicki and Jim both are willing to give Matt a chance, and despite the fact that Matt continually shows himself as untrustworthy, his old friends repeatedly stand up for him.  Eventually, though, Matt takes things too far, and Jim and Nicki are forced to acknowledge Matt's wickedness.

This film dragged for me; in fact, I was going to turn it off when there were about 30 minutes left---only my regard for the fabulous Robert Ryan kept me going.  As always, Ryan is extremely good and solid in the role.  He definitely played the unlikeable cad to perfection.  Maybe the subject matter just didn't interest me, I don't know.  I just know that with the exception of the final two minutes, which were exciting, the last half of the film was hard to get through. (And the first half wasn't a whole lot better.) I didn't hate the film, though.  For me, a "hate it," 1-star rating is a film that I detest so much I turn it off.  This one was just rather boring.  (That's why there are no 1-star films on my blog...I don't watch 1-star films...I just turn them off and, thus, don't know enough about them to review them.)

However, we're all unique, so what may be boring to me, someone else may like.  So, if Alaska Seas sounds interesting to you, you can catch it on Net Flix instant viewing, or perhaps it will be on TCM's schedule in the near future.

Happy viewing!!