Comin’ at Ya: Orphan 3D Films, Part I

Well, it’s now the year of Bugs Bunny (er, the Rabbit),  according to Chinese astrology, and apparently 2011 will not suck for many of  us (except roosters).

A positive sign can be traced to the final weeks of this past  December in which Prime Minister Stephen Harper didn’t prorogue parliament.  That’s the first time in 2 years our government wasn’t shut down because the PM  didn’t get what he wanted. I doubt it’s a sign of maturity or a more benevolent  Steve, but it’s nice power wasn’t abused for purely selfish reasons.

Torontoist reports the Toronto Public Library system will undergo cutbacks really soon because  people ‘don’t need no stinkin’ libraries’ in key downtown locales. Apparently  the Urban Affairs branch at Metro Hall is doomed because people and students in  the vicinity don’t like reading new books, and would prefer to travel to Bloor  & Yonge at the Reference Library for all their needs. A large percentage of  the electorate who voted for Rob Ford should feel satisfied one car formerly  attached to that horrid gravy train is being scrapped for its metal, and those dribblings of beef that have besmirched the rails of progress are no longer greased with dangerously slippery Bisto. Kids have lost their heads licking the  rails for extra protein, so this is good news.

If this is the first wave of anti-downtown measures, perhaps  the city of Toronto  should become a free city. It sort of worked for Danzig, although we  should hold a plebiscite so the GTA can hear F.U. in crisp DTS Audio Master  clarity.

Just uploaded are a pair of reviews for fifties 3D films no  one cares about but should, because they’re fun, and ought to be among the  first wave of classic films studios should released on 3D-HD, either via  broadcast or on BR.

I’ll scribble and blather about the validity of the multiple  home 3D systems on the market shortly, but if anything good comes from this new  format being badly marketed and sold to consumers without a consistent standard  among manufacturers, it should be the outright restoration / rescue of 3D films  languishing and disintegrating in vaults. Now’s the time, bean counters, to  dust off those negatives and surviving prints and get these movies back into  circulation before the people that want them die off.

It’s not a joke. Each generation cares less for classic  films, old-time stars, and classic TV series, and that’s why the on-demand  DVD-Rs are being adopted by several studios. People still want them, but  there’s less of them, and that’s why those titles sell for the unnecessary  price of $19.95 when they should be $9.95.

Inferno [M] (1953) is one of the better 3D  films because, like Alfred Hitchcock, director Roy Ward Baker used the format  to place us on the sidelines, as poor Robert Ryan desiccates onscreen under the  broiling sun. It’s a great Fox film has been screened on TV at one time or  another in crappy anaglyph 3D, but it is available in Spain  (flat) on DVD.

Spain has the world’s biggest classic movie store, where  they sell movies on real DVDs, and I want to visit this magical place and do  the Dance of Joy & Gratitude, since Fox doesn’t care about its other  unreleased classics. Witness the Anniversary box that contains nothing new  (okay, it has Cavalcade, which  should’ve been released years ago on  DVD when more of its target audience was still alive), nor the 3-CD tribute box  that reissues things collectors already have.

Also reviewed is Dangerous  Mission [M] (1954), an  Irwin Allen-produced suspenser with Piper Laurie ooing at Victor Mature’s  muscles as he wrestles electrical cables because there are no tigers are Glacier National Park.

You think I’m on crack? Read the review. This gem played at 2nd World 3D Film Expo in Hollywood, back in 2006, and  the Dial-Up trailer link on this page still works (albeit at postage stamp size).

Mark R. Hasan,  Editor


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