If Bogart didn't say "Play it again, Sam", what exactly did he say?
If you have to be told that James Cagney never said "You dirty rat!" or that Bogart didn't actually say "Play it again, Sam", you probably wouldn't be reading the Cinema Retro web site. However, the good folks at The List Universe have cobbled together the 15 top movie misquotes and we have to say some of them are as revealing as they are amusing. To check out the list click here
We got our hot, grubby little hands on the new James Bond magazine, Mi6 Declassified that originates in England. Although this is not sold on news stands or stores, it also isn't subscription-based, either. Apparently, issues will be printed periodically and you simply order them as each issue is published. Over the decades there have been numerous Bond magazines of widely varying quality. Mi6 Declassified boasts top production values. It is compromised somewhat by the fact that it consists of only 24 pages. However, there isn't any padding and the articles are extensive and informative. The premiere issue also follows the tradition of the best Bond-related magazines by not confining the contents to films. There is an interesting, behind-the-scenes look at the second-unit contributions to filming Casino Royale but there are also stories pertaining to the literary 007 and even an offbeat interview with Bond screenwriters Neal Purvis and Rob Wade that touches on Bond only peripherally by having them discuss their 007 spoof of several years ago, Johnny English. (The Rowan Atkinson starrer bombed in the U.S. but was a huge hit in the U.K.)
The magazine also covers the famous 1960s daily James Bond comic strips by artist John McLusky that ran in newspapers. The mag gets personal insights from McLusky's son Graham, who recalls the painstaking amount of research his father did in order to capture the essence of Ian Fleming's stories. (The strips were based on the novels, not the films). There is also an interview with author Charlie Higson, whose liine of Young Bond novels have defied the cynics by becoming best-sellers. Other unusual articles include an interesting look at how Sideshow Collectibles design their acclaimed series of James Bond statues and figurines and a behind-the-scenes story centering on how the sexy Bond babes featured in the From Russia With Love video game were designed, along with interviews with the actresses on whom the characters were based. (For us, this is the weakest article only because we've never embraced video games and are still trying to master Space Invaders.) The most entertaining piece is a reflection on You Only Live Twice which was released 40 years ago. It covers the royal premiere in London and features a cool photo of the Queen being greeted by Sean Connery (complete with mustache for filming Shalako) and Dick Van Dyke, who was in England for Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. There are also brief reflections on the legacy of the film from Bond authors Charlie Higson and Raymond Benson, as well as Nancy Sinatra, actor Shane Rimmer and Commander Ken Wallis, who designed the Little Nellie autogyro.
Overall verdict: a very welcome addition to the world of Bond lore with informative articles, very good production values and some very nice photos. Our only complaint is that we wish the magazine was more substantial in terms of pages. However, given how risky publishing any magazine is in the age of the Internet, we can certainly understand why one would want to judge reaction to the concept before plunging into a more ambitious venture. We'd also like to see more interviews with people involved in the films in future issues, but that's just a personal prejudice. Although the magazine doesn't state it, we understand this to be a very limited edition, so if you're curious about MI6 Declassified, better order now or end up paying ten times the amount on Ebay next year! The magazine is only available for order on-line at www.mi6magazine.com/
Cinema Retro writer Tom Lisanti is no stranger to fans of cult movies. He has written numerous volumes tracing the careers of character actors and sexy starlets. However, his latest book, Glamour Girls of Sixties Hollywood (McFarland, $39.95) is his most ambitious yet. The book is a treasure trove of interviews with and updates on the careers of second-tier sexy supporting actresses. We've often wondered what became of some of these starlets whose careers burned brightly but briefly - and now we know. In some cases, they simply retired to raise a family while others suffered more tragic fates. The book covers starlets from both film and TV series and includes fascinating insights about many of the actresses who appeared in our favorite spy films such as Beverly Adams (from the Matt Helm movie The Silencers) and Donna Michelle, Yvonne Craig and Thordis Brandt (The Man From U.N.C.L.E.). The diverse number of actresses also includes Hammer horror star Victoria Vetri, sexy Paramount contract player Michele Carey, beach movie favorite Mary Hughes and dozens of others. There are a total of 75 glamour girls' careers covered.
Danica d'Hondt (left) keeps "poor" David McCallum at gunpoiint, along with her fellow villainesses Sharon Tate and Kathy Kersh in The Girls of Nazarone Affair segment of The Man From U.N.C.L.E. Danica is one of many spy movie and TV actresses interviewed in Tom Lisanti's new book.
In the meantime, if you haven't checked out Tom Lisanti's popular web site that pays tribute to the films and stars of the 1960s, do so immediately by visiting www.sixtiescinema.com
Where have you gone, Howard Beale? Our nation turns its lonely eyes to you...
Ace reporter/author Carl Bernstein, who made journalism history when he broke the Watergate scandal with his partner Bob Woodward, has let loose with scathing criticism about the dumbing down of American culture. In a lecture to journalism students, Bernstein wags his finger at a public removed from reality and more obsessed with the likes of non-entities like Donald Trump and Paris Hilton. He not only blames the media but also the public for embracing a news media that comfortably incorporates celebrity scandals into hard news reports. Strange as it may seem, given the fact that we are a web site and magazine that deals with film stars, we heartily agree. The place for entertainment news is in entertainment-based publications and web sites. There isn't a single film or music magazine or site that should take more prominence in people's lives than those that present world news. It should be a rare occasion when a celebrity makes their way into the legitimate news cycle - perhaps the death of a legendary actor or director or a scandal so shocking that it has actual news value. However, the networks are awash with junk that cheapens the contributions of real journalists who put their lives in danger to report on occurrences in dangerous places the world seemingly couldn't care less about. The news cycle is packed with Barbie/Ken-boy/girl anchor teams chosen for their looks, not their credentials. It's apparent many haven't the vaguest idea about the deeper meaning of what they're reading off the monitors. It's like Braodcast News and Network redux. Ironically, although American cable TV has numerous "news" stations, I had to switch to the BBC today to learn that the worst floods in Mexican history have so far displaced over one million people. Yet, I didn't see a word of it on any U.S. news network - however, CNN did have a very important segment on tossing leftover Halloween pumpkins. Oh, and the nets were awash with Heather Mills in a crying jag of self-pity about how she's suffered living with Sir Paul McCartney -even though she's supposed to walk away with the biggest settlement in British divorce history. Meanwhile, wars rage, health care coverage evaporates, presidential candidates debate in forums most people don't bother to watch (hey, they're on opposite Dancing with the Stars, for God's sake!) and its left to fewer and fewer individuals who actually care about the state of the world to make life and death decisions for everyone.
Network's "Mad Prophet of the Airwaves" Howard Beale had it right when he advised his own audience to throw out their TV sets and shout "I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take this anymore!" We intend to do precisely that- but first, we gotta see how this week's episode of Two and a Half Men starring comedy icon Charlie Sheen turns out!- Lee Pfeiffer