HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Honeymoon Phase, The
One Summer
Bird Island
Variety
Devil to Pay, The
Gypsy
Lost in London
Divorce Italian Style
Becky
Salon Kitty
Misbehaviour
Charles, Dead or Alive
Gretel and Hansel
Mademoiselle
Tunnel, The
India Song
Last Rhino, The
Made in Hong Kong
Ring of Spies
Rom Boys: 40 Years of Rad
Pocketful of Miracles
The Tomb: Devil's Revenge
Sidecar Racers
Space Dogs
Out/Marriage
Safety Last!
Bride Who Has Returned from Hell, The
Show Boat
Savage
City Called Dragon, A
I Used to Go Here
Six Suspects
Still the Water
Not Now, Comrade
I'm Thinking of Ending Things
Wives of the Skies
Two Heads Creek
Next Stop, Greenwich Village
Captain, The
Great Wall, A
   
 
Newest Articles
A Knock on the Door at 4 O'clock in the Morning: The Strangers on Blu-ray
Wives of the Skies: Honey Lauren Interview
To Catch a Thief: After the Fox on Blu-ray
Tackling the Football Film: The Arsenal Stadium Mystery on Blu-ray
Film Noir's Golden Couple: This Gun for Hire on Blu-ray
The Doctor Who Connection: Invasion on Blu-ray
Hill's Angles: Benny Hill and Who Done It? on Blu-ray
Big Willie Style: Keep It Up Downstairs on Blu-ray
Walt's Vault: 5 Cult Movies on Disney+
Paradise Lost: Walkabout on Blu-ray
Buster Makes Us Feel Good: Buster Keaton - 3 Films (Volume 3) on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Nights In with ABC 3 - Don't Go Away - I Could Do with a Bit of Cheer Now!
What Use is Grief to a Horse? Equus on Blu-ray
For God's Sake Strap Yourselves Down: Flash Gordon on 4K UHD Collector's Edition
Party Hard: Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Nights In with ABC 2 - Your Faces are All Blurred!
Eve Knew Her Apples: The Lady Eve on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Tempo - Gallery One
Network On Air: Nights In with ABC 1 - Welcome Once Again to Manchester!
Transformative Apocalypses: Phase IV and Southland Tales
The Happiest Days of Their Lives: The Guinea Pig on Blu-ray
Faced Poe: Three Edgar Allan Poe Adaptations Starring Bela Lugosi on Blu-ray
Hard Luck, Buster: The Cameraman on Blu-ray
At the Hop: Mr. Vampire on Blu-ray
Divine Madness: Female Trouble on Blu-ray
   
 
  This Property is Condemned Adding To The Depression
Year: 1966
Director: Sydney Pollack
Stars: Natalie Wood, Robert Redford, Charles Bronson, Kate Reid, Mary Badham, Alan Baxter, Robert Blake, Dabney Coleman, John Harding, Ray Hemphill, Brett Pearson, John Provost, Robert Random, Quintin Sondergaard, Mike Steen, Bruce Watson
Genre: Drama, RomanceBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: Willie (Mary Badham) is gingerly walking along a railroad track, being careful not to fall off. She notices young Tom (John Provost) and calls him over, but then they both tumble down the embankment and land in a heap where they get to talking. She tells him she is wearing her sister's clothes, and this launches her into a reminiscence about her family, and how they lived in that boarding house over there, the one which is now abandoned with the sign "This Property is Condemned" on its doors. Willie's sister was Alva (Natalie Wood), a bright and funloving girl who was headed for disappointment...

Tennessee Williams wasn't too keen on this version of his one act play, probably because it bore little resemblence to the original which took the form of the two kids chatting on the railway line, whereas this film was mostly concerned with the love life of Alva told in a lengthy flashback with the conversation used as bookends to the bulk of the story. The result is that while it looks the part, it doesn't really feel like the work of its creator, and even with Francis Ford Coppola among the scriptwriters this fell somewhat flat as drama.

The main drawback is that all the characters don't come across as living, breathing people and seem more like clich├ęs in a faux-Tennessee Williams reimagining. Natalie Wood is unquestionably the star here, and Alva's initial optimism is well portrayed in a flighty, starry-eyed performance, yet even there a contrived build up to tragedy takes away from any emotional power - this is more like a soap opera with A-list talent behind it. The other big name in the cast was Robert Redford, essaying the time honoured role of stranger in town who, as this is set during the Depression, does not surprise you when he brings bad news.

There are compensations in having two such glamorous stars in your film, because it does give you something to look at while you ponder over why nothing else is particularly captivating, and the supporting roles are filled out by the likes of Charles Bronson, not carrying a gun or punishing evildoers but in a rather dodgy part as the man who pretends to want to live with Alva's mother (Kate Reid) when he is really lusting after the daughter. Also appearing is Robert Blake who, as with all of the men, is holding out hope that Alva will fall in love with him, and To Kill a Mockingbird's Mary Badham makes a good impression, all elbows and knees and feistiness, in one of her rare appearances before she gave up the screen.

Conforming to your expectations, Alva and Redford's Owen do fall for each other, but also deeply predictably the path to true love does not run smoothly for them, and when Owen receives his inevitable beating from the menfolk it's as much as because he has won Alva's heart as it is because of the dire straits he is here to announce for all of them. Pessimism rules the day, as Alva's sparky nature at first entrances Owen and brings him out of his contrasting cynicism, only for real life woes to sabotage the couple's happiness time and again. The whole "opposites attract" notion is shown up as leading to nothing but trouble - we're talking opposites personailty-wise rather than looks-wise, patently, but in this film you cannot imagine many being satisfied for long. Alas, that includes the audience too. Music by Kenyon Hopkins.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 5011 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Paul Smith
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
  Lee Fiveash
  Mick Stewart
Enoch Sneed
  Dsfgsdfg Dsgdsgsdg
   

 

Last Updated: