Showing posts with label noir. Show all posts
Showing posts with label noir. Show all posts

Sunday, January 16, 2022

Noir Watch: 711 Ocean Drive (1950)




Watched:  01/16/2022
Format:  TCM
Viewing:  First
Director:  Joseph M. Newman

Part of the "law and order"/ "crime doesn't pay" flavor of films that can get lumped in with noir, I'd seen 711 Ocean Drive (1950) listed for a while and figured I should get to it.  

It's.... fine.  A mix of "technology plus crime!" that is sometimes done well, but usually ends up with a bit of a hokey angle, plus the story of how easy it is to become an LA crime lord because you know how to patch through a phone call is... well, it's a set up.  

Starring the actor who always makes me think "well, shit, if that guy could become a lead in movies, why didn't I try?", Edmond O'Brien, the movie follows his phone-company technician who believes anyone who falls in love or who isn't trying to get ahead through whatever's at hand is an idiot (a real charmer, this character), O'Brien is presented by his bookie to a wire service/ gambling empresario.  He hooks them up with the magic of RADIO in a scheme I utterly never understood - as it seemed not illegal - but facilitated a lot of illegal bookmaking.  

I dunno.  There's a lot going on here and you'll either watch the picture or you won't.  But it is intensely plot heavy as O'Brien manages to take over ALL CRIME IN CALIFORNIA and then a syndicate moves in and he joins up.  Mostly because he wants to get with one of the Syndicate guy's wife, played by notable actor Joanne Dru (Red River, She Wore a Yellow Ribbon).  

The film's big set piece is the access they had to Hoover Dam (then called Boulder Dam) and filmed Edmond O'Brien sweating his ass off running all over the damned thing trying to avoid police.  It's a reminder that I would very much like to one day tour the dam myself.  It seems keen.  But the movie makes the interesting choice to just cast the rangers at the Dam as themselves, so suddenly in minute 70 you're getting cops giving wildly wooden performances.  

The movie has some weirdly good cinematography, courtesy Franz Planer.  They made the most of the on-location work at the dam, but there's also plenty of interesting stuff in a gas works and just in how some sequences were thoughtfully framed or lit.  

I didn't hate the movie, but it's not threatening to knock any of my top 10 favorites out of place.  Joanne Dru is the best one in the movie, so much so that it can feel like she was imported from a different movie.  Edmond O'Brien is never bad, but he is always Edmond O'Brien.  I don't know what 711 Ocean Drive is, but I guess it's the house he lives in after becoming a crime boss.  

Any threat the movie received from actual organized crime about the secrets of criminal ways supposedly revealed in the film that would have required the production required police protection seems... well, it seems made up.  But I guess if you hire cops to hang around and then say "so hot, we needed people legally allowed to shoot people to protect it", that's a pretty good PR hook.  

Anyway, stay away from telephone switching equipment.  That way lies crime and personal doom.

Friday, December 31, 2021

Neo-Noir Watch: The Silent Partner (1978)




Watched:  12/30/2021
Format:  TCM on Demand
Viewing:  First
Decade:  1970's
Director:  Daryl Duke/ Curtis Hanson

I knew nothing about this movie other than it starred Elliot Gould before Jamie put it on.  She'd read about it somewhere and knew "this will be in Ryan's wheelhouse, so I don't need to sell him on it", and she was 100% correct.

The upshot is that I really dug this movie, and I think you might, too.  It's a very 1970's neo-noir in the vein of classic thriller-noir like Kiss of Death.  But don't use that as an exact comparison.

LIGHT SPOILERS

Friday, December 24, 2021

Holiday Noir Watch: "Lady in the Lake" (1947)




Watched:  12/21/2021
Format:  Amazon
Viewing:  Unknown
Decade:  1940's
Director:  Robert Montgomery

Well, this is officially my own personal Christmas movie tradition now, I guess.


Monday, December 20, 2021

PODCAST 175: "Cash On Demand" (1961) - Christmas 2021 w/ Jamie and Ryan




Watched:  12/13/2021
Format:  BluRay
Viewing:  Second
Decade:  1960's
Director:  Quentin Lawrence




Jamie and Ryan pull the perfect job of a half-baked podcast episode! The best laid plans of podcasters and men and all that as we do our best to get through the score, talking about a Christmas heist film from the renowned Hammer studios, starring some top-shelf talent! Join us, and let's see if we can't get away with it!




Music:
Money - Pink Floyd, Dark Side of the Moon 


Christmas 2021 Playlist

Monday, November 29, 2021

Light Noir Watch: The Big Steal (1949)




Watched:  11/29/2021
Format:  TCM
Viewing:  First
Decade:  1940's
Director:  Don Siegel

A tight little film from RKO, I thought maybe I'd seen The Big Steal (1949) when I saw it listed just based on the cast.  William Bendix, Jane Greer and Robert Mitchum is plenty to get me to take a look.  And, yes, given the non-descriptive names of many-a-film noir, I have to check to see what the movie is and if the summary of plot rings any bells.  And even then, I'm often 5 to 10 minutes into a movie and realize "say... I've seen this before".    

But... no.  I hadn't seen the movie.

It's a lot of plot, a minimum of character, and swings between comedy, road trip movie and crime movie surprisingly deftly.  Mitchum plays a guy on the run from the US Army, looking for Jane Greer's fiancé (Patric Knowles), Fiske.  The fiancé swears he's on the up and up to Greer when she finds him in a Mexican hotel minus the $2000 he took when he split without a word.  But he swears he'll have it.  That very day, in fact.

And then he bounces as Greer takes a shower.  

Mitchum and Greer team-up and go after him, and do that "they irritate each other" to "romance is blossoming" thing.  Bendix pursues semi-ruthlessly.  But the Mexican setting and characters are marginally more than a back-drop in this film.  Ramon Navarro as the Inspector General and Don Alvarado as Lt. Ruiz are watching our Americans flail around and set their own plan in motion that's 2 steps ahead of our leads.  Greer speaks Spanish and has an understanding of her surroundings that Mitchum lacks - and is way too distracted to learn more.  But you do get an idea that this movie is trying harder than some others that treat Mexico as one big resort via Greer and our police officers and a few other players (the road crew boss is excellent).

Anyway - it's Mitchum playing Mitchum, Bendix playing Bendix and Jane Greer looking lovely and having some excellent beats, both comedic and otherwise.  This film is two years after Out of the Past, which also teamed Greer and Mitchum, and my guess is they must have liked working together.  But it's so... different.  But, still, within their personas all three leads could really stretch and do whatever was needed.  The much lighter tone here - I mean, the movie ends on a punchline callback - allows Greer to do some very different work than the few other films of this era where I've seen her.  And we know Mitchum and Bendix can do comedy, and it all holds.  The movie doesn't feel tonally off as it leaps around, it just goes with the adventure of the high-stakes road trip.

I dug it.  Not going to set the world on fire, but it was enjoyable.  And, hey, we got to see Jane Greer drive like a maniac.

Monday, November 22, 2021

Noir Watch: Johnny O'Clock (1947)




Watched:  11/22/2021
Format:  TCM Noir Alley
Viewing:  First
Decade:  1940's
Director:  Robert Rossen

Well, Johnny O'Clock (1947) is a ridiculous name for a movie, and a character.  But here we are.  It's maybe not a shock its hard to take seriously when I saw Johnny Dangerously years before I'd see a gangster or noir film the 1980's comedy was looking to emulate.  But Johnny O'Clock is not a comedy - it's a straight film, but packed with plot, schemers and some very deeply rat-a-tat hard boiled dialog.  

It's not a great movie, and it's entirely wrapped up in its own plot so much, it kind of forgets to do much with characters after an initial impression, but...  I think Muller's take on it intersects with how I felt.  This movie felt like someone had read a lot of snappy dialog in novels that didn't quite make it to the movies and wanted that to happen.  

Everyone has an agenda, and everyone is willing to play for keeps - and by the time we show up as an audience, a lot of balls are already in motion.  We're just watching the Rube Goldberg machinations go through their motions.  So just buckle up and watch.

I've been a Dick Powell fan since seeing Murder, My Sweet a long time ago, and sealed the deal with Cry Danger.  I am not against his song-and-dance-man persona that predates his move into noir, but I prefer him as the sardonic voice centering a crime film.  And, of course, the film has Lee J Cobb as a cop on a case, super-actor Thomas Gomez and noir-favorite Evelyn Keyes.  The movie also includes a very early appearance by Jeff Chandler.

I.. am still not sure why a key character is murdered early on in the movie, the flashpoint for everything else in the movie.  They sort of suggest "oh, she might have known something so we bumped her off", but...  why would they think that?

ANYWAY.  Maybe not the first noir I'd suggest someone rush out to see, but it still played well.

Saturday, November 20, 2021

Noir-vember Watch Party Watch: Out of the Past (1947)




Watched:  11/19/2021
Format:  Amazon Watch Party
Viewing:  Unknown guess is:  4th
Decade:  1940's
Director:  Jacques Tourneur

Look, adding rum plus talking to people in chat over a movie is probably *not* the ideal way to watch this twisty, turny noir classic.  It did point out that Out of the Past (1947) may have some good performances, but it's harder to keep up with because there's so much plot versus character stuff in the movie (which is easier to follow when you're not a rum or two in, and you're cracking wise in the comments). 

Still, I love Out of the Past.  Poor old doomed Robert Mitchum falling for the absolute worst possible girl - and you get it!  She seems great!  Ain't nothing wrong with Jane Greer minus the fact she seems to get off and torturing people and seeing pain inflicted.  Throw in Kirk Douglas, and that's a movie with a lot of strong chin action.  

Plus:  not enough Rhonda Fleming, Virginia Huston, Steve Brodie, and a handful of other RKO players you'll know from around RKO.

I invite you to check the movie out yourself.  

Friday, November 19, 2021

Noir-Vember Watch Party - FEMME FATALE FRIDAY! "Out of the Past" (1947)



Out of the Past (1947) is the film I think of when I think of as the ultimate Femme Fatale of noir.  Jane Greer's Kathie saw Double Indemnity and was like "ppffffft.  AMATEUR!"  

A lot of stuff gets bandied about with people talking about noir who have a glancing familiarity with the topic, and a lot get it sorta-wrong.  But this is the one about the dame with the heart of obsidian and the poor dope who can't get past those eyes I think a lot of neo-noir wound up trying to emulate.  I mean, fair enough - it's Jane Greer, whose eye-game is only trumped by Bacall, with Tierney nipping at her heels.*  

Anyway, watch folks make some incredibly bad decisions that all seem very right at the time.


Day:  11/19/2021
Time:  8:30 PM
Format:  Amazon Watch Party
Price:  $3




*we can talk Marie Windsor and Audrey Totter eye-game, but that's a different sport


Tuesday, November 16, 2021

Noir Watch: Detour (1945)




Watched:  11/16/2021
Format:  Amazon Watch Party
Viewing:  Unknown
Decade:  1940's
Director:  Edgar G. Ulmer

Detour (1945) is a bitter, furious bit of pulp noir with no budget, no bankable stars, cardboard sets and a half-assed set-up, and it is absolutely impossible to stop watching once you start.  And, that's at least 85% Ann Savage, who doesn't even show up til the 1/3rd mark.  

It had been a while since I'd watched Detour, but Jenifer selected it for a Tuesday watch party, and I was delighted she did.  I have no idea what spawned this movie or even how it got made.  It doesn't feel like a war-time picture, but it does suggest what would come in the months and years following the war.  It's just lacking the gloss the studios would put on something like this - hard-scrabble talent working off a half-finished script and utterly buyable as drifters and wastrels of pre-War America.  

Noir Watch: The Lineup (1958)




Watched:  11/16/2021
Format:  Noir Alley on TCM
Viewing:  Second or third
Decade:  1950's
Director:  Don Siegel

I had seen The Lineup (1958) years ago, and remembered it was crazy and Eli Wallach was fantastic, but not much else.   It was part of a set of DVD's I was watching in quick secession, and I just didn't get back to it.  Which is too bad, it's a cool crime movie.

Bay Area residents will want to watch it just to see the locations in 1958, some of which are long gone, but most of which are still standing (something Austin would find horrifying.  We knock everything down, willy-nilly.).  As a police procedural in the years after The Naked City, the city itself is more than a backdrop, its geography and environs are crucial and inform everything, from the hook of the plot to the finale car chase.  

Meanwhile, the cast is kind of interesting.  There's the aforementioned Eli Wallach, but he doesn't enter the movie til the 1/3rd mark, along with Robert Keith (who I just learned is the father of Brian Keith) as a pair of heavies/ hit-men in from Miami.  A baby-faced Richard Jaeckel plays their driver hired on by The Man - the mastermind pulling the strings.  Raymond Bailey (Mr. Drysdale from The Beverly Hillbillies) a manager of the San Francisco Opera who is involved in the case and Emile Meyer who seems like he's always a cop plays one of the lead detectives.

Sunday, November 14, 2021

Noir-Vember to Remember Watch Party: The Big Sleep (1946)




Watched:  11/12/2021
Format:  Amazon Watch Party
Viewing:  Unknown
Decade:  1940's
Director:  Howard Hawks

This is literally one of the most written about books and movies of the last century.  Go out there and get nuts reading up on it elsewhere.

Like with the Universal Horror films, I've just been delighted to share these films with the usual gang, some of who've seen these films, some who haven't.  I try not to be a pain interjecting factoids and whatnot, tag-teaming with Jenifer.  It's definitely different watching *good* movies versus campy movies, but everyone's been terrific. 


Friday, November 12, 2021

Noir-Vember Party Watch - FRIDAY: The Big Sleep (1946)




This Friday we take on one of the two most well known DETECTIVE NOIR films.*  This one was originally written by Raymond Chandler, who we saw did scripting work on last week's offering.  The Big Sleep was one of the Philip Marlowe detective novels, with a ton of twists and turns.  

Famously, it wasn't exactly hard to bring to screen, but every once in a while someone on set would ask "wait, why is this happening?" and they'd go to the script, then the book, then call Chandler and he'd be like "I don't remember."  But they made the movie anyway.  

Frankly, I don't know why people find it so complicated.  If you can keep up with the average prestige television shows and all the twists and turns, this really isn't that big of a deal.  But it has its reputation.  

It's also what crime and detective books love to knock off.  If you can find an old, decaying man hiring a detective and there's a goof of a sexpot somehow attached, someone saw this movie or read this book (see: The Big Lebowski).  Personally, I heart this film.  It's Bacall and Bogie having a killer time, plus all the supporting players are fantastic - and it's where a million noiristas decided to love Dorothy Malone for being the most low-key thirsty girl in cinema.

JOIN US.

Day:  Friday - 11/12/2021
Time:  8:30 PM Central/ 6:30 PM Pacific
Service:  Amazon Watch Party
Cost:  $3



*the other is Maltese Falcon

Thursday, November 11, 2021

Noir Watch: 5 Steps to Danger (1956)




Watched:  11/10/2021
Format:  Noir Alley
Viewing:  First
Decade:  1950's
Director:  Henry S. Keslar

There's both too much and not enough going on this post-war roadtrip noir - that is barely a noir.  But it does star Sterling Hayden as a guy in a hat, and Ruth Roman as a dame in trouble who pulls Hayden in over his head.  

I hesitate to get into this plot-dense noir with a synopsis, because the plot isn't exactly nonsense, but how they go about it is a mess.   But the basic gist is that Hayden's car breaks down en route from LA to Texas somewhere, and Ruth Roman offers him a ride if he can help her split the drive to Santa Fe so they can keep moving.  

A mysterious nurse approached Hayden in a roadside stop and says they've been following Ruth Roman as she's an escaped mental patient or some such, but for some reason, they're just watching her? But, basically, it's a sinister spy story of former Nazis in the US (one played by Colonel Klink) trying to get ahold of some info Roman came into possession of whilst in Germany trying to get her brother out of East Germany (I think).  People keep trying to convince Hayden Roman is crazy - but she clearly isn't.  So.

Anyway, Hayden probably hated this script.  His character is kind of boring and always right about everything (which is not where Hayden shines), and Roman is fine, but a little dull here.  As is the movie.  

I did not love it.  I couldn't figure out why the CIA wasn't taking an active hand in the proceedings as so much was at stake and they were watching everything.  None of the movie's story really had much of a reason for happening.  I dunno.  I've seen worse, but this one was just kind of not my thing.  Except it's a ripoff in many ways of The 39 Steps, which I've only seen as a play, and I liked that.. so.


Noir-Vember Party Watch: Sorry, Wrong Number (1948)




Watched:  11/09/2021
Format:  Amazon Watch Party (Jenifer pick)
Viewing:  First
Decade:  1940's
Director:  Anatole Litvak

I had never seen this film, but Jenifer chose it for a Noirvember Watch Party, and it had Stanwyck, so I wasn't going to dodge.  

Based on what seems to have been a very popular radio play, Sorry, Wrong Number (1948) is deep into noir-thriller territory, and achieves its goals totally differently, but just as effectively (or more so) as Beware, My Lovely or Sudden Fear

Stanwyck plays an invalid rich girl who hears a conversation over crossed wires (this used to actually happen, kids.  I remember getting pulled into other people's phone calls by accident as late as high school in the 1990's) wherein the two participants are planning a murder or an unsuspecting woman.  Stanwyck is bed-bound, and her husband hasn't come home, so it's through a series of phone calls and flashbacks that we put together her background and what's going on with her husband and her.

Sunday, November 7, 2021

Noir-Vember Watch: Double Indemnity (1944)





Watched:  11/05/2021
Format:  Amazon Watch Party
Viewing:  First
Decade:  1940's
Director:  Billy Wilder

We're doing a short series of Amazon Watch Parties of the ultra-famous noir films you should probably see at some point in your life.  Just three for Noir-vember.  That also means these movies have been discussed endlessly, so I'm not gonna do it.



Friday, November 5, 2021

Noir-vember Watch Party FRIDAY: Double Indemnity (1944)

 


You don't get Eddie Muller or Alan K. Rode, but you do get me and Jenifer, and we've seen some of these films.  

THIS WEEK:  BEST LAID-PLANS NOIR

Not all noir is detectives and whatnot.  Sometimes it's folks just getting in way over their heads. Usually because they're chasing a woman they probably shouldn't.  Or a man they shouldn't.  YMMV.  

This is *the* best-laid plans noir.  Based on a book by James M. Cain, co-written by Billy Wilder and no less than Raymond Chandler, and masterfully acted by Fred MacMurray, Edward G. Robinson and powerhouse Barbara Stanwyck, it's the top of the mountain for noir.

So get ready for some of the greatest dialog you'll ever hear in a film.  And some of the worst people you'll see in one.


DAY:  Friday, November 5th
TIME:  8:30 Central, 6:30 Pacific
FORMAT:  Amazon Watch Party
Price:  appears to be $4

Thursday, November 4, 2021

Noir Watch: Hell on Frisco Bay (1955)




Watched:  11/04/2021
Format:  BluRay
Viewing:  First
Decade:  1950's
Director:  Frank Tuttle

This was not at all what I was expecting.  It feels almost like a rough draft of something like Heat, where we see both sides of the cop and criminal coin.  It's a smidge longer as a result, has some complicated character stuff going on, and is shot in color, which is... very strange, honestly, for the type of movie it is.

But I also want to watch the movie with Jenifer or Tammy so they'll tell me what all of the San Francisco locations are.  This is VERY San Francisco.  You expect them to sit down and eat a bowl of Rice-a-Roni.

The story is pretty good, but the cast is pretty stellar.  Alan Ladd is an ex-cop released from prison for a manslaughter charge that he believes was a set-up.  He's been in San Quentin for five years, and despite his wife's desire to get back together, he's been refusing her while in prison and is still, for whatever reason, mad that she saw someone else while he ignored her for five years.*  The wife is played by Joanne Dru (Red River), and you're gonna think Ladd is a moron for ignoring her, especially when she performs as a songbird in a nightclub.  

Tuesday, October 19, 2021

Noir Watch: The Dark Past (1948)




Watched:  10/18/2021
Format:  TCM Noir Alley
Viewing:  First
Decade:  1940's
Director:  Rudolph Mate
Ellen Corby - domestic

A mash-up of two kinds of mid-20th century films, this one is quasi-noir, I guess, mostly because it echoes other films which are definitely noir.  But it's one part "trapped in a location with a criminal and his organization" which you'll know from The Petrified Forest to Key Largo, and one part "hey, kids: psychology!" - which pervaded any number of movies in this era, from Nightmare Alley to Miracle on 34th Street to Highwall

But, basically, a very young William Holden plays desperado Al Walker, whose gang just busted him out of prison, killing a couple of guards and a warden en route.  He and his gang (and his girl, played by Adele Jergens) hide out in the home of Lee J Cobb and Lois "Miss Moneypenny, herself" Maxwell, where they're entertaining a few guests.

It becomes a psychological cat and mouse game as Cobb tries to both save his own skin and that of his guests, and maybe cure the insane murderer, so long as he's got a few hours to hang, anyway.  

It's absolutely buckwild how both medicine and therefore psychology were seen in this era as quick miracle cures that could happen overnight.  I guess when the answer is "20 years ago we didn't have penicillin", everything seems possible.  

As a "we're all trapped in here with criminals" movie, you can do much better.  As a "mid-20th Century psychology" movie... it's just under par.  But, Lee J. Cobb makes for a convincing doctor, Adele Jergens is terrific as Holden's girl.  Holden is very good, himself, but he's early here and when you know movies where he's able to do more and with better dialog, this is definitely a less notable role for him.  

I'm fascinated with the gigantic country/ woodland getaway homes of this period.  I've seen dozens of movies with country houses like this, from Christmas in Connecticut to many-a-noir, and the movies always place actors in gigantic, spacious cabin/ houses that read as "set for a play" much more than a dwelling, and always seem bigger than anyone's actual home.

The movie also has Ellen Corby, who played a domestic in a dozen movies I've seen - and does so again here, but she's always around in some capacity as a "regular" person - be it a nurse, whatever.   I need to start an Ellen Corby tracker, because she went uncredited for years and was maybe the hardest working woman in Hollywood for decades. Yet, no one ever talks about her.  But she has 265 IMDB credits.  265!




Friday, October 15, 2021

SW Watch Party Series - Noirvember




For three Fridays this November (2021), we're going to get together and watch some of the biggest names in what came to be called the Film Noir movement.  Just like other watch parties of late, we'll be gathering via Amazon Watch Party.

Days:  Fridays
Time:  8:30 PM Central/ 6:30 Pacific
Via:  Amazon Watch Party

Movies will be about $3 - 4 to rent.

November 5th

November 12th

November 19th


Join us and catch up on the dark alleys and byways of a movement that cinema still hasn't gotten over.

Monday, October 11, 2021

Graham/ Kinda-Noir Watch: The Glass Wall (1953)




Watched:  10/09/2021
Format:  TCM on DVR
Viewing:  First
Decade:  1950's
Director:  Maxwell Shane

I dunno if this is actually Film Noir.  It sure didn't feel like it, but Eddie showed it and brought Dana Delaney along, so who am I to argue?

The Glass Wall (1953) was a contemporary issue movie in 1953, but one that echoes in the events of today.  A Hungarian WWII camp survivor and resistance fighter has stowed away on a ship and arrived in New York.  But with no papers, he's set to be turned away and returned to Europe where he is fairly certain he will be killed.

Any of this ringing a bell?

He's stowed away under the notion that if he can find an American he saved and hid for days in a haystack, that man will support his entry to the US.  But all he knows is a first name and that he plays the coronet.  So - he makes good his escape, pursued by the law, walking through the streets of New York.

Also starring Gloria Grahame in a surprisingly small role for her at the time.  But after Bold and the Beautiful, Grahame knew she'd been good in earthier roles like in Crossfire, and so appears as a factory worker, down on her luck and knocked around by life.  (She also steals the coat of an impossibly young Kathleen Freeman, who makes a federal case out of it eve though she gets her coat back).   

Less familiar will be the stripper with a heart of hold, played by Robin Raymond - a very Americanized Hungarian transplant living with her less-adjusted mother and deeply American brother (Joe Turkel!*).  It's a great part of the film I hadn't seen coming, and rather than platitudes and Gloria Grahame looking amazing as a shop-worn girl who needs a pal - typical movie stuff - it's a look at the multiple angles of the immigrants here in the US.  And, man, in one of those shining moments of film, it feels *true*.  

In this era of dismissing the UN as useless, it's also a time capsule of what the UN was supposed to be, and what it represented to the world in the wake of the atrocities and devastation of WWII.  And as quickly as it's established, we can see how useless an empty UN is - maybe something not intended in the way you can see it now, but certainly how it was meant at the time.

Star Vittorio Gassman is exactly what the film needed - a handsome face that could look desperate.  The film wasn't shot entirely on backlots.  There's some real footage of Gassman on the streets of 1953 NYC including Times Square.  It's chaotic and dark, lit with neon.  As Gassman looks for his friend, the loneliness and alienation are stunning.  

The movie also features Ann Robinson from War of the Worlds and a handful of character actors, as well as real jazz musicians like Jack Teagarden and Shorty Rogers.  

The movie isn't great, but I have a feeling - because of it's period messages reverberating to today - I'll remember it.  




*ah, you know him from Blade Runner and The Shining.