Essays

The Big Country, Directed by William Wyler

The Big Country, Directed by William Wyler
By Ron Falzone

The western is the most muscular and malleable of all genres and, as such, it has attracted great directors over the years.  Some, like John Ford, Anthony Mann and Budd Boetticher are so linked to the western that it comes as a surprise to see movies with these names attached that have nothing to do with horse, a gun, and a flower-faced girl.

The Court Jester Directed by Norman Panama and Melvin Frank

The Court Jester Directed by Norman Panama and Melvin Frank
By Ron Falzone

George Lucas once said that it was easy to get an audience to cry.  All you had to do was put a kitten onscreen then have the bad guy strangle it.  What one cannot come up with, though, is an equally surefire way to get a laugh.

The Dirty Dozen, Directed by Robert Aldrich

The Dirty Dozen, Directed by Robert Aldrich
By Ron Falzone

For me, being trapped in the house brings on an odd kind of nostalgia.  It isn’t that I’m wistful for when I had the flu and was bedridden for two weeks.  It’s just that the isolation makes my mind wander to little moments of great import from longer ago than I usually like to consider.

The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp, Directed by The Archers

The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp, Directed by The Archers
By Ron Falzone

There are many filmmakers I love, but only a few that I hold in awe.  At the top of my list are the great Japanese minimalist Yasujiro Ozu, and the extraordinary British maximalist team of Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger.

The Next Voice You Hear, Directed by William Wellman

The Next Voice You Hear, Directed by William Wellman
By Ron Falzone

I am the product of twelve years of Catholic education.  This means that I do not take guilt lightly.  At the same time, I love guilty pleasures.  This is especially true when that guilt involves movies about religion.

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