Wednesday May 1, 2002

Mini movie review for "Suddenly" 1954.

From the very first moment of the movie you can feel the camp. It spills off the screen almost as quickly as Sam Fuller's "The Naked Kiss" (the uncontestable peak of twisted melodramatic motion picture brilliance) but here's it was surely a complete mistake. Or could it have been spiced with subversion? I don't know the director or writer but their bios seem spotless. I’m sure Sen. McCarthy loved them. Sterling Hayden, is fucking ridiculous as sheriff "Tod" (were people named Tod then? Guess so.) So ridiculous that after the first two goofy minutes I asked myself, "you're gonna stay up all night watching b-movie crap instead of helping the needy children of your community?" and I didn't have time to answer. I popped a Salisbury steak TV dinner in and parked it. I love Sterling Hayden and something about his delivery is so wooden that at the very moment he's proclaiming his otherworldly patriotism he reminds me of poor Ellen when she is coerced to front for the assassins and lie that everything is ok and send the cops away. There's something about that guy. After all, he was hanging with Stanely Kubrick at the time (The Killing) and he would play General Jack D. Ripper in Kubrick's Dr. Strangelove.

From IMDB:

"To modern eyes the all-American good guys look ever-so-slightly psycho in their undying patriotism, love of guns (but hey!, not killing), and idol-worship of the Prez. Even the pacifist heroine has to relent and understand that guns solve problems, suddenly."

Of course, monologing through the whole thing is Mr. Straight, Frank Sinatra. Even though he plays a psycho killer, he doesn't fit with the wierdos in this movie. I found this on the back side of a "The Man with the Golden Arm" DVD and I'd forgotten that I'd already seen that. That movie sucked. Its message is simplistic and boring and dated. I was amazed how boring it was and angry with my rental so I didn't have much left for "Suddenly" (which, for some reason, I thought was a recorded live performance of Mr. Frank.) But let me tell you now, "Suddenly" is worth finding at the vidstore and bringing home to your loved ones.

From IMDB:

"This is the film that Lee Harvey Oswald supposedly watched mere days before assassinating JFK, a fact that Frank Sinatra learned years after the tragedy prompting him to withdraw the film from circulation."