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  • The Art of the Steal

    The Art of the Steal

    ★★★½

    Documentary examining how a museum collected was taken over by Philadelphia politicians and cultural indtitutions. Dr. Albert Barnes amassed a collection of post-Impressionist paintings that some ultimately valued in excess of $25 million. The terms of his will stipulated that the collection be used for educational purposes and be permanently housed in a small museum on the outskirts of Philadelphia. The film details how the Philadelphia Art Museum conspired with city and state officials, private and public charities and co-opted…

  • Panic in the Streets

    Panic in the Streets

    ★★★½

    A public health doctor and a Police Captain must find a disease carrying killer before he spreads plague throughout San Francisco. I recently watched this, along with The Killer that Stalked the City, as part of TCM's double feature of crime and plague movies. A focused script that did not veer off into tangents and Elia Kazan's tight direction make this the superior film. Strong cast headed by Richard Widmark, in his usual irascible nails across the blackboard character, as…

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  • The Train Robbers

    The Train Robbers

    ★★★

    Widow hires an aging gunman and his gang to retrieve stolen gold from a wrecked train. The story emphasizes character development and Southwest scenery rather than action. There was little extraneous plotlines that allows the viewer to concentrate on any individual characters. Filmed in Panavision that creates great wide angle shots of the desert and a deserted town. Interesting plot twist at the end. One of John Wayne's better performances during the 1970s augmented by more than passable efforts from Ann-Margret, Rod Taylor, Christopher George, Bobby Vinton and Ricardo Montalban.

  • The Fountainhead

    The Fountainhead

    ★★★

    Overly melodramatic adaptation of Ayn Rand's novel about one man's battle against conventional opinion. The film, like the book, contains a heavy dose libertarian ideology. Even the stellar leading cast - Gary Cooper as the idealistic architect whose career suffers when he refuses to compromise his aesthetic principles, Patricia Neal as his love interest and Raymond Massey as the muckraking newspaper publisher - could not save the film from its heavy handed message.

    Good use of lighting and cinematography created…