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  • Tobor the Great

    Tobor the Great

    ★★½

    Most of the inside of Nordstrom's house is a typical 1950s Hollywood domicile complete with harmonious relations between all the inhabitants. Gadge looks up to his grandfather, respects his mother and never gets into anything more than the occasional good natured mischief (the worst effect of which being the breaking of a vase). Despite being themselves father and daughter, Nordstrom and Janice effectively function as father and mother to the boy, making the home's only defect (the dead father, killed…

  • I Was a Communist for the FBI

    I Was a Communist for the FBI

    ★★½

    As you can probably guess from the title of today’s film, this is a genuine piece of red baiting, FBI praising, Hollywood propaganda. Now, those who read my reviews will know that my stance on the red scare of the 1950s is somewhat unconventional. Sure, it was a witch-hunt, and of course being such more than a few innocent bystanders had their lives and careers derailed by the self-appointed witch-finder generals. Yet I think it’s important to note that communist…

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  • The Thing with Two Heads

    The Thing with Two Heads

    ★★★

    Double Header | The Whatsit | Blaxploitation Horror

    The Blaxploitation Horror films of the 1970s were generally modern twists on classic horror stories. Blacula (1972), Blackenstein (1974), and Dr. Black, Mr. Hyde (1976) for instance, were adapted from the three most famous horror novels of the 19th century. Abby (1974) the black sheep of subgenre was at least basing itself on a film widely hailed as a contemporary classic. The Thing with Two Heads then really is a bizarre addition…

  • Pickup on South Street

    Pickup on South Street

    ★★★½

    After the House Committee on Un-American Activates (HUAC) exposed the surprisingly large number of communists (both past and present) operating in Hollywood, the industry found itself in a bind. The American public wasn’t going to shell out for movies they thought were made by the Communist Party. Beyond the alienating individual film-goers, the industry risked state and local-level boycotts organized by the American Legion or other patriotic organizations. So rather than risk their profits, the industry created a blacklist that…