Four Sided Triangle (1953) – Tuesday’s Overlooked Film

And now for a slight change of pace here at Fedora, featuring real-life femme fatale Barbara Payton. She plays the object of everybody’s affection in this off-kilter melodrama that was one of the first of Hammer Studios‘ excursions into the weird and the bizarre that would soon dominate their output. It is also a precursor to the Frankenstein films that director Terence Fisher would make his name with at the studio just a few years later. We begin when the three protagonists were children in a small English village …

This review is offered for Tuesday’s Overlooked Film meme hosted by Todd Mason Sweet Freedom

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Posted in Hammer Studios, Science Fiction, Terence Fisher, Tuesday's Overlooked Film | Tagged , , | 30 Comments

A MYSTERIOUS AFFAIR OF STYLE (2007) by Gilbert Adair

Adair_Style_ffSequels can be such a pain! Expectations after a success can be unfairly high, the pressure to succeed often crippling artistic instincts, co-opting authors into merely varying a winning formula by just a smidgen. But here I am attempting a second bite of the cherry – I tried really hard to convince blog-readers out there that the first Evadne Mount mystery, The Act of Roger Murgatroyd, was something special, and got thoroughly castigated for my trouble. Will I fare any better with the sequel? Well, I’ll hold on to my fedora and see what happens…

I offer this review for Patti Abbott’s Friday’s Forgotten Books meme over at her fab Pattinase blog.

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Posted in Agatha Christie, Alfred Hitchcock, Evadne Mount, Friday's Forgotten Book, Gilbert Adair, Postmodern | 30 Comments

Book to Movie Challenge – quarterly update

BTM2-poster3This year I am co-hosting the Book to Movie Challenge run by Katie over at Doing Dewey. The premise is simple – review both a book and the movie or TV adaptation made from it – there are 5 levels:

Movie Fan – review 3 books and their movies
Movie Devotee – 6 books and their movies
Movie Lover – 9 books and their movies
Movie Aficionado – 12 books and their movies
Movie Auteur – 24 books and their movies

Here is how we have been doing in Quarter 3:

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Posted in 2014 Book to Movie Challenge | 10 Comments

The Jigsaw Man (1983) – Tuesday’s Overlooked Film

Bennett_Jigsaw-Man_corgiThis spy thriller was inspired by the exploits of double agent Kim Philby. Indeed the author went so far as to cheekily dedicate the book to him, and all her ‘dear friends in the KGB’ including those, ‘not yet surfaced.’ Published shortly before Anthony Blunt was revealed as the ‘Fourth Man’ in the Cambridge Spy ring, it tells the story of long-time defector Philip Kimberley (sic) who, after some plastic surgery, leaves Moscow to settle some unfinished business back in England.

I submit this review for Katie’s 2014 Book to Movie Challenge at Doing Dewey; Bev’s Silver Age Vintage Mystery Challenge; and Tuesday’s Overlooked Film meme over at Todd Mason’s Sweet Freedom blog.

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Posted in 2014 Book to Movie Challenge, 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, Cold War, England, Espionage, London, Moscow, Spy movies, Tuesday's Overlooked Film | 36 Comments

A MOST WANTED MAN by John le Carré

LeCarre-A-Most-Wanted-ManFirst published in 2008, this ultra-topical spy thriller by John le Carré (whose work I previously profiled here) deals with money laundering, political asylum, extraordinary rendition and the ambiguities surrounding the tactics used in the ‘war on terror.’ It has now been turned into a movie, so I thought it might be a good time to have a look at the original and its adaptation, which includes the last lead performance by the late, great Philip Seymour Hoffman. We begin in Hamburg and the arrival of a man on the run …

The following is offered for P atti Abbott’s Friday’s Forgotten Books meme, today hosted by BV Lawson of In Reference to Murder; and Katie’s Book to Movie Challenge at Doing Dewey (for reviews, click here)

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Posted in Espionage, Germany, John le Carre | Tagged | 32 Comments

Phantom Lady (1944) – Tuesday’s Overlooked Film

Woolrich-Phantom-Lady-centipedeThis great movie is based on the book that got me hooked on the dark suspense of  Cornell Woolrich in the 1980s – and I suspect that, along with The Bride Wore Black, it’s the one that does it for most readers too. The premise is simple: a man is on death row for killing his wife. The only chance to prove his innocence is if he can find the stranger he spent the evening with at the time of the murder. The trouble is proving she ever existed as she seems to have vanished.

I offer this review for Bev’s Vintage Golden Age Mystery Challenge; Tuesday’s Overlooked Film meme over at Todd Mason’s Sweet Freedom blog; and Katie’s Book to Movie Challenge at Doing Dewey (for reviews, click here).

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Posted in 2014 Book to Movie Challenge, 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, Cornell Woolrich, Friday's Forgotten Book, New York, Robert Siodmak | 36 Comments

SHOOTING STAR (1958) by Robert Bloch

Bloch_Shooting-Star_aceReprinted by Hard Case Crime a few years back, this was Robert Bloch’s one and only private eye novel – so of course, given his inclination towards the tongue-in-cheek, he made it a book about an investigator with only one eye! It’s set in Hollywood and it seems that the author did not hold it in very high regard. So how does this story of the scandalous murder of a cowboy movie star actually hold up?

I offer this review as part of Bev’s Vintage Golden Age Mystery Challenge; Rich Westwood’s celebration of all things 1958 over at his Past Offences blog; and Patti Abbott’s Friday’s Forgotten Books meme over at her fab Pattinase blog.

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Posted in 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, Friday's Forgotten Book, Hollywood, Robert Bloch | 70 Comments