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Member's Reviews

Strangers on a Train, a review by Dragonfire

Strangers on a Train

Strange thing about this trip. So much occurs in pairs. Tennis star Guy (Farley Granger) hates his unfaithful wife. Mysterious Bruno (Robert Walker) hates his father. How perfect for a playful proposal: I'll kill yours, you kill mine. Now look at how Alfred Hitchcock reinforces the duality of human nature. The more you watch, the more you'll see. "Isn't it a fascinating design?" the Master of Suspense often asked.

Actually, it's doubly fascinating. For Hitchcock left behind two versions of 'Strangers on a Train'. The original version (SIDE A) is an all-time thriller classic. A recently found longer prerelease British print (SIDE B) offers "a startling amplification of Bruno's flamboyance, his homoerotic attraction to Guy and his psychotic personality" (Bill Desowitz, 'Film Comment'). The laying bare of Bruno's hidden nature, along with great set pieces (head-turning tennis match, disintegrating carousel) and suspense as only Hitchcock can deliver, makes for a first-class trip.

My Thoughts

This was the first time I saw this one.  I picked it up after I found it on sale at Amazon last November...even though I was horribly behind in this marathon at the time.  Even though I haven't seen the movie before, I have seen other versions of the story in other movies and different tv shows.  Just this past year, The Simpsons and Castle used a version of the story. 

Things start off showing Bruno and Guy meeting for the first time and talking.  Bruno seems to be missing a few marbles right from the start with how he tries to act like Guy's best friend and talking about murder.  When Miriam is shown, she is a horrible woman, and it is easy to see why Guy wanted out of the marriage.  The movie has a slow build of tension and suspense that works wonderfully.  I think this is one of the most suspenseful movies I've ever seen.  During the climax, something does seem a bit ...extreme, but it still works - though
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Guy has started a relationship with another woman who is the total opposite of Miriam.  He is mostly likable, though he does some questionable things.  Farley Granger is wonderful in the part that is so different from the one he had in Rope when he was the one embracing murder.  Bruno is a wonderful villain and Robert Walker is great in the part.  The rest of the cast is good too, though they don't stand out as much.  Hitchcock's daughter has a decent sized role as Barbara.

Overall, this is a wonderful Hitchcock movie.

I did post a review on Epinions a few days ago.

Strangers on a Train

(From Alfred Hitchcock Marathon on June 23rd, 2010)

Member's Reviews

The Trench, a review by Rich

The Trench

THE TRENCH tells the story of a group of young British soldiers on the eve of the Battle of the Somme in the summer of 1916, the worst defeat in British military history. Against this ill-fated backdrop, the movie depicts the soldiers' experience as a mixture of boredom, fear, panic, and restlessness, confined to a trench on the front lines. At the center of the troops is 17-year-old Billy MacFarlane (Paul Nicholls), who alongside his older brother, Eddie (Tam Williams), has volunteered for service. Like their fellow squad members, they are boys dressed as men. Their survival is in the hands of war-hardened Saergeant Winter (Daniel Craig) and bookish Lieutenant Hart (Julian Rhind-Tutt). However, when word comes that the squad will join the first wave of the attack, they all face an equal fate.

Full of character cliches, cringe-worthy dialogue, totally inaccurate historical detail, embarrasingly cheap sets, this film was a mess from start to finish, and a total waste of the acting talent available. Do they believe that anyone would think the trenches before the Somme would be spotless and dry, full of clean cheery soldiers in perfect health, lolling about without any sense of imminent danger?
This is a totally unconvincing production, a major disappointment and an insult to the viewer.

(From Riches Random Reviews on May 11th, 2009)

Member's TV Reviews

The Flash Marathon, a review by addicted2dvd

The Flash Marathon

Image: Mutated dog (German Shepard) after being injected with a secret serum.

Episode 2 - Out of Control
He needs subjects for genetic-engineering research - any volunteers? Tina's former colleague is the main suspect when the bodies of murdered homeless people mysteriously disappear from crime scenes.

Guest Stars:
Vito D'Ambrosio as Bellows
Biff Manard as Murphy
Mike Genovese as Lt. Warren Garfield
Stan Ivar as Dr. Carl Tanner

My Thoughts:
A good episode... but not as good as the pilot movie. The transformations were done rather well. They definitely looked cool. Basically the story of a scientist that forgets his ethics while working on experimental gene mutations trying to cure disease. A case of someone doing the wrong thing for good reasons. But ends up getting lost on the way.

My Rating:

(From The Flash Marathon on April 7th, 2010)