In this update: another version of the sex scene from The Imperial Edition, and a link to Gore Vidal’s original script.
There’s a new “Caligula: The Ultimate Cut” with previously unviewed scenes of Helen Mirren (and others). Mirren even offers a Full Heche and a spread-legged shot as she rolls over. What I find intriguing about this is that the new cut allegedly consists entirely of footage never seen before: alternate takes, alternate angles, deleted scenes, etc.
UPDATE: Helen Mirren – open leg shot as she rolls over.
Film clips here. The top one is the one with the open-leg shots.
About 15 years ago, a very poor quality alternate cut of this scene appeared in the extras of the three-disk issue called The Imperial Edition. Yes, that was yet another cut from completely different angles. Obviously, they shot a ton of coverage for this film. God knows how many more versions can be milked out of this.
Gore Vidal wrote the first draft of this screenplay, but the film bore little or no resemblance to his script, so he sued to have his name removed from the film and its publicity. You may remember all of that, but you might not remember that there was a novelization of Vidal’s original script. I have that paperback somewhere in the chaos that is my book collection. It originally sold for $2.25, but is now going for eighty bucks on Amazon Marketplace (even more elsewhere!) Instead of buying a crappy eighty-dollar paperback, you can read Vidal’s actual script for free.
That clip left out some of my favorite parts, like when Alec Baldwin is visited by the ghosts of Leap Day Past, Present and Future. The dyed-in-the-wool Republican is horrified to see what happens in a future created by his parental neglect. Because he tried to make more money on Leap Day instead of spending time with his daughter, he must face his worst nightmare: she grows up to work for Habitat for Humanity!
I have a real soft spot for this episode of 30 Rock, which I would rank among the top twenty sitcom episodes of all time. (Where is Chuckles the Clown now that we really need him?)
In addition to Leap Day and Chuckles, some of my other nominees:
The series finale of Blackadder. Funny and touching.
The “Communication Problems” episode of Fawlty Towers.
“The Contest” on Seinfeld.
“Flowers For Charlie” on It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.
“The Spanish Inquisition” on Monty Python’s Flying Circus.
“The Doll” on Curb Your Enthusiasm.
“Turkeys Away” and “Commercial Break” (the Mr. Ferryman episode) on WKRP in Cincinnati.
“Arthur After Hours” on The Larry Sanders Show.
“Kissing Your Sister” on Veep.
“Louie Goes Too Far” on Taxi.
My lowbrow darkhorse: “Castaways Pictures Presents” on Gilligan’s Island. The castaways find a camera and film, so they make a zero-budget movie and send it off on a raft or something. It is discovered, but does not help them get rescued. Their consolation prize: The French love their chaotic, incomprehensible gibberish, and it wins the Palme d’Or at Cannes.
No special episode, but any MASH appearance by Colonel Flagg. (I just never found MASH to be that funny, although it occasionally tugged at my heartstrings.)
I’m sure that I must be forgetting many. “The Adventures of Pete and Pete” isn’t a traditional sitcom. It’s an afternoon kiddie show from Nickelodeon, but I’d probably nominate at least three episodes from that show, which may be my favorite comedy of all time. I’d mention some episodes of Arrested Development and the underrated Go On (which one of you turned me on to), but I can’t immediately separate the episodes in my head.
From context, I knew that the “Hottentots” were an African group of some kind, but I didn’t know exactly what a Hottentot was until today, and I didn’t know it was a disparaging term. There is a scene in Mary Poppins where some stuffy old fart insults the chimney sweeps by comparing their blackened faces to Hottentots. Frankly, as I listen to that with today’s ears, I think it would be offensive even if “Hottentot” were the accepted name for that ethnic group. I guess things were different in 1964, when white people could get by with all kinds of racist shit.
As the good lord intended. (Or so they thought at the time.)
Oppenheimer -700 8.4 93%
Poor Things +1200 8.4 92%
Barbie +1400 6.9 88%
The Holdovers +1400 8.0 97%
Killers of the Flower Moon +2500 7.7 93%
Anatomy of a Fall +2500 7.8 96%
The Zone of Interest +4000 7.7 93%
American Fiction +5000 7.6 94%
Past Lives +10000 7.9 96%
Maestro +10000 6.6 79%
I have seen them all but Anatomy of a Fall and Past Lives. I will see Anatomy tomorrow, but I’m not sure when I’ll see Past Lives. I agree with IMDb voters and critics that Maestro is the weakest entry. I think Bradley Cooper did a great job of putting it all together as the director, but not such a great job on the script.
Speaking of Oppenheimer, Cillian Murphy and Robert Downey Junior are also heavy favorites for the male acting nods, and Chris Nolan is considered an absolute lock for the direction award. (-2000)
Last year all the favorites won in the major categories except for Best Supporting Actress, where Angela Bassett was considered a very slight favorite over the winner, Jamie Lee Curtis. That one was considered a three-way horse race among those two and Kerry Condon, and it was so closely matched that it would be fair to say that they were all co-favorites.
Only one long shot came in last year. All Quiet paid off 9-1 for best production design. (I’m assuming that you consider 9-1 a long shot, and that you give a shit about the Oscar for production design).
Here’s a rarity: captures from a version of the film that currently seems unavailable.
Captures and comments from Johnny Moronic:
That Lady from Peking
Another movie from the American director of Color Me Dead (1969) and It Takes All Kinds (1969), who made another B-grade movie for American audiences starring American actors Carl Betz, Nancy Kwan and singer Bobby Rydell. This time it’s a spy thriller with an East Asian angle.
Interestingly, in the versions available online there’s a scene where Australian actress Sandy Gore is in the bath but there’s some very dramatic edits in the scene heavily suggesting something was cut out. Thankfully Ozmovies has posted pics from an uncut version of the movie where we see Sandy’s breasts and bottom. I collected a few pics (below), but that is all that’s available at the moment.
I’m generally surprised to see Sandy in a nude scene, as I can’t remember her having any such scenes in the many things I’ve seen her in. She still turns up fairly regularly in TV and movies.
Hopefully the uncut version can be found.
Carl Betz was a huge TV star at one time. He played Donna Reed’s husband in hundreds of episodes of The Donna Reed Show, and was then the titular Judd in Judd for the Defense.
Bobby Rydell was a popular singer in the USA in the interim between Elvis’s departure for the service and the Beatles breaking through. Rydell’s big hits all came in 1959 and 1960, while Elvis was a G.I. (Pop music was not especially distinguished in that period. Everyone was looking for the messiah, but there were mostly false prophets. Rydell was one of several who broke through in Elvis’s absence. Neil Sedaka, Frankie Avalon and Paul Anka were also members of that club.)
Obviously Betz and Rydell had both fallen from their earlier, loftier perches if they were reduced to appearing in crap like this.
Director Eddie Davis made three films in Oz, as noted by Johnny, but all of them starred B-list American TV actors instead of Aussies, so he was obviously making them primarily for the American market. His stars included Tom Tryon, Carolyn Jones, Robert Lansing, Sid Melton and Barry Sullivan. His “name recognition” ploy didn’t seem to work, in that these films have basically escaped notice from then until now. The director’s post-Australia life is kind of a mystery. The film covered above seems to be his final credit, although he lived another 16 years. I don’t know the explanation.
Let’s face it, that is a turnstile through which we must all pass eventually.
“Choi Min-ah, the daughter of a company president, mistakes a new machine as a device which helps her with her fatigue, and she is accidentally turned into a chicken nugget. As her father, Choi Seon-man and intern Go Baek-joong who has a crush on her, try to turn her back into a human, they discover unexpected secrets.”
I wonder how many nugget-related secrets can truly be unexpected.
Johnny Moronic says: “The movie seems to be only available as a bootleg workprint. The version I have has no tail credits and a timecode. Better than nothing I guess.”
Unless you are Australian you have probably never heard of this film. Even if you are Australian, you may never have heard of it unless you are a major film buff, but it played a role in the history of Aussie filmmaking.
As Miles Ago points out, “Although it was a critical and commercial failure at the time of its release and has rarely been seen since, Two Thousand Weeks (aka 2000 Weeks) was a landmark for the Australian film industry, since it was the first all-Australian feature film to gain a mainstream cinema release in Australia since 1958.”
It represented the first film of Tim Burstall, who began his career with a dream of being a respected auteur. When this heartfelt artistic film bombed, he did a 180 and started to produce audience-pleasing junk films like Alvin Purple, a notorious sex farce.
You can learn everything you could possibly want to know about this film here
This revered screen treasure is now on Tubi in its entirety. In addition to Angelique, it features several actors whose names you probably know: Julie “Living Doll” Newmar, Wally “Underdog” Cox and Victor “Count Manzeppi” Buono (pictured above with Pettyjohn). I’m guessing that all of them save Pettyjohn wanted to forget that they were ever in this movie.
I don’t remember why, but I actually wrote a lengthy review of this offbeat flick. Here’s a line that will give you at least a small clue to the insanity of this film:
Oh, boy, I’ve been putting off mentioning this one, because it is just too embarrassing to type. This must be the only film in which Wally Cox does a nude sex scene.
Julie Newmar mentions in the DVD special features that the film was made for literally zero budget. The director filmed without permission in various locations, and never paid the actors. (We presume he conned people out of a camera and film.) It goes without saying that no actor would ever work for him after that, so this remains his one and only film.
1. The evil count’s full name was Carlos Mario Vincenzo Robespierre Manzeppi. That was a character in Wild Wild West. In the same era, Buono also played the villainous King Tut in the campy Batman series. Coincidentally, Newmar also played a Batman villain, Catwoman. (I assume it’s a coincidence, unless the director specifically tried to hire Batman characters.)
2. I’m so old that I remember Wally Cox as “Mr. Peepers,” a high school teacher who was not a voyeur, despite his name. (C’mon, man. It was the 50s.)
3. You probably know that Angelique was Captain Kirk’s green-haired love interest in “The Gamesters of Triskelion.” She was popular at Star Trek conventions for many years, but died while still in her 40s.
Mr. Skin mentioned that there were a few films with nudity, but it doesn’t sound very promising
Kristen Stewart is not nude in Love Lies Bleeding, but there is some skin from Katy O’Brian and Anna Baryshnikov. If I understand his report correctly, it’s just a bare butt from Katy. He does say,”This film sounds like it has everything – including a nude Anna Baryshnikov.”
Renate Reinsve shows her breasts and her bush in A Different Man.
Riley Keough plays Sasquatch in Sasquatch Sunset, covered in makeup and prosthetics, “but she does show Bigfoot Breasts.”
We know her better as “Catherine” Bach, but she was plain ol’ Kathy back in 1976, about three years before The Dukes of Hazzard.
Extraordinarily bad movie. It’s one of those where, even when you have just watched it, you can’t describe what it is about. Given that, I wrote a completely fake review suggesting that it was a lost script by Shakespeare, and many people took me seriously, despite lines like this:
It represents Shakespeare’s only known indulgence in the more explicit details of “the saporous Sapphic supper,” or as we like to call it today, carpet-munching. Unfortunately, the film may not perfectly reflect Shakespeare’s intentions, since it has been filtered through the imperfect recollections of a writer whose other works include “Blazing Stewardesses.”
As Lincoln (allegedly) pointed out, you can fool some of the people all of the time …
even when you’re not trying to.
Here’s what the film is supposed to be about, per Wikipedia:
Nicole is a wealthy, reclusive widow who lives alone with her murderous chauffeur. When she falls for a successful car salesman, and makes friends with a young dancer, things begin to turn out for the better. However, when she begins to suspect that the car salesman is cheating on her, she snaps and slips into an “alternate reality of violence, sex and paranoia.”
I wonder how you word the “help wanted” ad when you’re looking for a murderous chauffeur. Do you have to use coded language, or do you just come right out with it?
My usual, rambling, almost or completely irrelevant points:
I started to write about how we lost another from The Greatest Generation, then I realized that Jewison almost missed the cutoff. (He was born in 1926, one year before the generally recognized tail end of the group.) That semi-official definition is based on anyone old enough to fight in WW2 legally, but those dates need to be flexible. My definition encompasses anyone who fought in WW2 period. My dad’s brother lied his way into the service and was part of the D-Day Invasion. (The army accepted his claim to be 18. If you were willing and eager to parachute behind enemy lines, the recruiters didn’t check your credentials too carefully.) That clearly qualified him as TGG, in my book, even though he was born in 1929 and enlisted at 15. Uncle John was not alone. Scholars estimate that 200,000 underage Americans fought in The Big One. (God only knows how many underage Russians. I suppose many millions.) There are not many of them left, no matter how young they were then.
A curious point about pronunciation. That CBC report reminded me that Toronto natives, even the news broadcasters, almost always pronounce it Toronno, without the interior “t,” just as Milwaukee natives almost never pronounce the “l.”
They came up with only one theme for their jokes: Jacob is taller and hotter than the rest of us. That’s true enough, and maybe good for one passing reference, but not as the basis of multiple sketches.
My theory is that Jacob should always be required to travel with a Jiminy Cricket character to remind him that being hot doesn’t cover up douchebaggery. I recommend Curtis “Booger” Armstrong for the job. In fact, I think Jacob and Booger should do a buddy cop film where the elderly Booger actually subdues all the bad guys and solves all the crimes.
This is part of my continuing campaign to give Booger more work.
I finally managed to score a better copy of Addio, Alexandra, the film which contains almost all of Pier Angeli’s career nudity. It’s better, but still not good. The colors are so faded that it’s essentially in sepia-and-white. You would never know it fron this DVD, but this was a color film! On the other hand, the DVD is fairly clear, and better than what we had before.
During her marriage to Vic Damone, they appeared as guests on the June 17, 1956 episode of What’s My Line:
By the end of the sixties, however, Hollywood had abandoned her. Near the end of her life, Pier tried to resuscitate her career by appearing in some low-rent projects to demonstrate that she was still working. This was one of those projects. There are reports that she wanted to keep this film out of distribution, and it’s easy to understand why she felt that way. This project had to do her career more harm than good. Not only is it a bad film, but everything about her appearance in it is disappointing. First, she looked older than her 37 years; second, her overacting in one sequence was embarrassing; and finally, Addio was a cheapjack piece of erotica which should theoretically have been far below her pay grade.
Unfortunately, Addio Alexandra was not the low point of her career desperation. That would be Octaman.
Did her despondency about the state of her life and career lead to suicide? There is a lot of debate. She did die of a drug overdose at 39. Was it an accidental overdose? Suicide? An error by her physician? We will never know for sure. We can’t conclude that she took her own life, but neither can we rule out the possibility, given her emotional state in those final years.
Pier Angeli (billed under her real name, Anna Maria Pierangeli)
Colette Descombes in the same film
I took a shot at trying to restore what the film should have looked like:
Here are some additional pics of Descombes from articles about the film:
And here are Pier and Collette in publicity stills. That scene is in the film (see the Pier Angeli series above), but these particular shots must have been posed on the set. Pier is the one with glasses!