Love old or unusual movies but never know when they’re on? Here are several I recommend:
All Through The Night (1942): If you’ve never seen this insane Humphrey Bogart movie, you’re in for a treat. Bogart plays a gambler/grifter whose favorite cheesecake baker is murdered. Determined to get to the bottom of this heinous crime, he accidentally uncovers a Nazi sabotage plot. The cast is a delicious rogues gallery that includes Conrad Veidt, Jane Darwell, Frank McHugh, Peter Lorre, Judith Anderson, William Demarest, Phil Silvers and even Jackie Gleason. It’s a scream watching one of our best actors playing it straight in this dizzy spoof.
Turner Classic Movies, 5 p.m. Wednesday
Mud (2012): Writer/director Jeff Nichols has made three movies I really like: Take Shelter (2011), Midnight Special (2016) and this one. It stars Tye Sheridan as a teenager who lives on a boat on the Mississippi with his parents. One day, he and his buddy encounter a fugitive (Matthew McConaughey) who ends up greatly complicating their lives. The movie’s stunning cast includes Michael Shannon, Sarah Paulson, Ray McKinnon, Sam Shepard, Reese Witherspoon, and even Joe Don Baker. It’s real Rural River Rat Noir, and I find it to be irresistible.
Now streaming on Amazon Prime.
Steve Jobs (2015): I really enjoyed this fictionalized portrait of this complex icon. Driven by the powerhouse team of Danny Boyle (director), Aaron Sorkin (screenplay) and Michael Fassbender (star), the film takes us through three memorable days in Jobs’ life: The launches of the Macintosh (1984), NeXT (1988) and iMac (1998). Basing the stories on real life but allowing creative license frees up the filmmakers to try to explore this inspiring but also frustrating and maddening figure. Kate Winslet and Seth Rogen are excellent in supporting roles.
Now streaming on Netflix.
Cat People (1982): Why the wonderfully talented and quirky writer/director Paul Shrader decided to remake a quaint old ’40s horror film is beyond me, but I’m awfully glad he did. Starring Nastassja Kinski and Malcolm McDowell as descendants of a race of human/leopard hybrids, Shrader managed to make one of the scariest and most erotic thrillers of the 1980s. The film is flooded with both feline sensuousness and menace, much aided by Giorgio Moroder’s pulsing electronic score. This movie isn’t for the faint of heart (it includes one scene of shocking violence), but it’s a very distinctive and memorable thriller from an underrated American film original.
Now streaming in HBO GO / HBO NOW.
Trivia Question 827: Can you think of a movie from the 1990s in which Paul Sorvino played a gangster who helped fight Nazi saboteurs?
Answer to Trivia Question 825: Bette Davis played twins in A Stolen Life (1946).