Blackboard Jungle (1955) – Episode 35

Blackboard Jungle (1955)

Welcome to today’s show, my name is John. As always you can subscribe to the show on iTunes or follows the links to social media in the podcast show notes. Today we have the third of our back to school movies and it is the first of its kind. Today’s film is Blackboard Jungle (1955). When this film was released it shocked a post-war American audience. Glenn Ford does a great job in this role and it surprised me because I know him primarily as a cowboy actor or as Superman’s dad if you are younger. Glenn Ford plays the first-time teacher Richard Dadier. Ford was born in Canada in 1916 and moved to the US when he was 8. After high school, he began working in theater and taking odd jobs including with Will Rogers who taught him to ride a horse. Wow. In 1939, he began working for Columbia Pictures and became a US citizen the same year. His first major role was Heaven with a Barbed Wire…

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Sidney Poitier – The Cool Cat from Cat Island

Sidney Poitier in The Long Ships (1964)

Sidney Poitier became a stage actor after moving from Cat Island in the Bahamas and serving time in the Army. By 1949 he was so respected that he was offered a role in No Way Out (1950) directed by Darryl F. Zanuck. In this film, Poitier is playing a black doctor that must treat two white racists, one of which is played by Richard Widmark. This was the first of the roles he played that showed the conflict between the races. In the Blackboard Jungle (1955) he played a resentful youth that was won over by his teacher played by Glenn Ford. In The Defiant Ones (1958) he played an escaped convict shackled to a white prisoner. In Lilies of the Field (1963), he helped white nuns build a chapel and became the first African-American to win an Oscar for a lead role. In Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner (1967) he is engaged to a white girl and has to deal with generational bigotry from both sides. In To Sir, with Love…

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To Sir, With Love (1967) – Episode 34

To Sir, With Love (1967)

To Sir, With Love (1967) is one of the great teacher/student films. Following in the spirit of Goodbye, Mr. Chips (1939) Sidney Poitier is masterful as the novice teacher. Rough Script To Sir, With Love 1967 Welcome to today’s show, my name is John. As always you can subscribe to the show on iTunes or follows the links to social media in the podcast show notes. Today we have the second of our back to school movies and it is a dandy. The movie is To Sir, with Love (1967) and stars that great actor Sidney Poitier with an English cast. Sidney Poitier plays the role of teacher Mark Thackeray or Sir. Poitier was covered in Episode 14 – Band of Angels (1957) and Episode 23 – The Long Ships (1964). Christian Roberts played student Denham. Roberts ended his career with 23 credit but none of them are really of interest to this audience. Judy Geeson played the role of rebellious student Pamela Dare. Born in 1948, she was a…

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The Bedford Incident (1965) – Episode 27

The Bedford Incident (1965)

The Bedford Incident (1965) is a first rate Cold War drama with Richard Widmark and Sidney Poitier. This submarine versus destroyer battle is like a chess match with a surprise ending. Rough Script The Bedford Incident (1965) Welcome to Episode 27 The Bedford Incident (1965). This is a great Cold War film that stars Richard Widmark, Sidney Poitier, and Martin Balsam. All of the actors have been introduced before so there will only be a few additions. This movie has such a great ending you may want to stop and go watch the movie before you listen further. Of course we are still following the Widmark line. Richard Widmark is cast in the role of Captain Eric Finlander U.S.N. He is obsessed with the Cold War enemy of the United States, the Soviet Union. He speaks his opinions to the dismay of his superiors and he drives his men to the breaking point and beyond. For more information on Widmark see Episode 23 – The Long Ships (1964).| Sidney Poitier…

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The Long Ships (1964) – Episode 23

The Long Ships (1964)

Welcome to Episode 22 – The Long Ships (1964). We are still following the Lionel Jeffries line. This movie is about Vikings so I love it no matter what. With big stars such as Richard Widmark and Sidney Poitier, it’s hard to go wrong. But they did seem to go wrong a great deal. Poitier said, “To say it was disastrous is a compliment.” Richard Widmark played the role of Viking Rolfe, son of Krok. He was really too old for this role and turned it down a few times. He finally agreed when that cast his good friend Sidney Poitier. Widmark has always fascinated me as an actor. He burst into movies playing angry and psychotic anti-heroes. However, in all of his roles, he seemed like he was cranked off. Is this good acting or was he really a mean guy? Widmark was born in Minnesota and always had an interest in movies. Like so many, he attended college to become a lawyer but he was derailed by the…

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Band of Angels (1957) – Episode 14

Band of Angels (1957)

Band of Angels 1957 is a quite enjoyable Civil War yarn with Clark Gable, Yvonne De Carlo, Sidney Poitier. Band of Angels (1957) Rough Script I’m continuing on the Patric Knowles lines that I first picked-up in Episode 2 –Chisum (1970). I was a little surprised when I dived into the credits and found our old friend Bob Steele first noted in the Burgess Meredith line from Of Mice and Men 1939. I usually don’t spend a lot of time on directors but icons like Raoul Walsh deserve a little extra. Walsh was born in New York and started on the stage there. He quickly moved into film work. In 1914, he was an assistant to D.W. Griffith while they made The Life of General Villa. The film was shot in Mexico and starred the real revolutionary Poncho Villa in the lead. The film which is lost contained actual battle scenes. A 2003 movie title And Starring Poncho Villa as Himself recreates the filming process and is worth a watch.…

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