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Badmovies.org Forum  |  Movies  |  Bad Movies  |  STRAIT-JACKET ~ good DUMB FILM « previous next »
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Author Topic: STRAIT-JACKET ~ good DUMB FILM  (Read 1582 times)
Allhallowsday
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« on: October 14, 2007, 09:41:52 PM »

I watched STRAIT-JACKET (1964) the other night on TCM.  This is a film I remember frightening me as a child, though now it’s worth quite a few laughs, and a few eye-rolls, and still a few thrills.  Written by the great ROBERT BLOCH and produced by the nearly-infamous WILLIAM CASTLE and though as corny, implausible, and silly as any of his movies, this one lacks the dopey gimmicks of theatre-watching (such as spectro-vision or whatever it was called with THIRTEEN GHOSTS) and is superior in that it never gets boring…

JOAN CRAWFORD stars in this sleaze-fest that leading ladies of her era and caliber were relegated to by the early 1960s (like BETTE DAVIS, MARY ASTOR, and OLIVIA DeHAVILLAND in HUSH, HUSH, SWEET CHARLOTTE or the inspiration for all of them, WHATEVER HAPPENED TO BABY JANE?STRAIT-JACKET also stars DIANE BAKER (as Joan’s daughter) and LEIF ERICKSON.  The great/ridiculous score by VAN ALEXANDER suits the schizophrenic mood of this flick. 

There is a character in this film that is such a s**t-heel, I would like to point it out, but that would defeat the point of watching this film, which I suppose I am recommending because it is a BAD FILM worth watching!  JOAN throws her knitting needles to the floor with such force, they pierce the carpet.  Could DIANE BAKER’s car be any tinier?  We have JOAN suddenly appearring in her underwear in a bizarrely candy-striped room, losing her mind; we have JOAN bizarrely (and kind of pointlessly out-of-character) throwing herself at DIANE BAKER’s fiance, a man nearly young enough to be JOAN’s grandson (yee-uck)… JOAN plays Lucy Harbin (a la Lizzie Borden, including the same child’s rhyme altered to suit the film… “Lucy Harbin took an axe gave her husband 40 whacks…took an axe, took an axe, took an AXE… !!!”)   JOAN falls across the axe, her bracelet jangling, JOAN falls in the dirt (twice) her bracelet jangling… DIANE BAKER moves a car inexplicably, has an axe-murderess for a mother, and after a traumatic meeting with her fiance’s parents (with JOAN's bracelets jangling) we watch a strange (but stupidly necessary) scene where DIANE’s aunt (ROCHELLE HUDSON) puts herself to bed instead of tending to her distraught adopted niece… THAT HIDEOUS GET-UP THAT JOAN’s DAUGHTER MAKES JOAN WEAR…!!! Cheez and crackers that damned dress figures way too prominently in this drek, but that’s what BAD MOVIES are all about.  A young, but no more dashing GEORGE KENNEDY plays the creepy farmhand with the fakest head-chop on record… the film is a bit surprising in that it shows the carcasses of slaughtered pigs, and though most viewers by that time had certainly had a porkchop, CASTLE understood they probably had not seen real, recently dead meat
My favorite lame moment was when the shirt blowing on the clothesline grabs GEORGE KENNEDY.   BounceGiggle 
At the very end of the film, we see the logo for COLUMBIA, the goddess of that name, without her head… !!  BTW, that's LEE MAJORS who has no lines, but loses his head in the very first scene of the film. 
« Last Edit: September 30, 2008, 10:33:35 PM by Allhallowsday » Logged

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RCMerchant
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« Reply #1 on: October 15, 2007, 05:20:30 PM »

 I watched it too! And I enjoyed just as much! The creepy wig and dress make Joan look even crazier than without! And George Kenndy is a real dirtball! I loved it!!! I tried to stay awake for 13 GHOSTS following the movie...but nodded out. DAM!
  I like William Castle's movies alot! Always silly, spooky fun! Great for kid Halloween parties!  Thumbup
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« Reply #2 on: October 15, 2007, 05:44:53 PM »

Definitely worth seeing for Joan's performace and general William Castle nuttiness. I wonder if they ever sold those Joan Crawford masks at department stores?

Another great 60's film featuring a former screen beauty playing a crazy old hag is DIE, DIE, MY DARLING!, this time with Talluhah Bankhead as the religious fanatic Mrs. Trefoile. Typical great exploitation cast also include Stephanie Powers and a feeble-minded Donald Southerland.

Bankhead next played "The Black Widow" on TV's Batman, then she died.

So it goes.
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Allhallowsday
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« Reply #3 on: October 15, 2007, 06:06:23 PM »

Bankhead next played "The Black Widow" on TV's Batman, then she died.
So it goes.
Been reading Kurt Vonnegut?   TeddyR 

I'm not sure if I've seen DIE, DIE, MY DARLING but need to check it out when I get the chance. 

Thanks guys, I thought I'd started another "orphan" thread!   Smile Thumbup Thumbup
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Allhallowsday
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Either he's dead or my watch has stopped!


« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2007, 06:08:44 PM »

Another great 60's film featuring a former screen beauty playing a crazy old hag is DIE, DIE, MY DARLING!, this time with Talluhah Bankhead as the religious fanatic Mrs. Trefoile. Typical great exploitation cast also include Stephanie Powers and a feeble-minded Donald Southerland.
TCM just showed DIE, DIE, MY DARLING, and I made a point to look at it, and it was enjoyably effective... not "dumb" really, at all (not that RAFFINE suggested that) except for DONALD SUTHERLAND, and the fact that nobody turns the water off in that house !!!   TeddyR Mrs. Trefoyle's water bills must be "nightmare"-ish !!  Buggedout
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Allhallowsday
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Either he's dead or my watch has stopped!


« Reply #5 on: May 22, 2017, 10:04:06 PM »

STRAIT-JACKET is on right now and I'm watching it...
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alandhopewell
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« Reply #6 on: May 23, 2017, 11:19:08 AM »

     STRAIT-JACKET is one of the best of the "crazy old bat" sub-genre of thrillers; I've lost track of how many times I've seen it.
BERSERK!, also with Joan, is a real hoot,
! No longer available Small | Large
as is THE ANNIVERSARY, a Bette Davis vehicle,
! No longer available Small | Large
and DEAR DEAD DELILAH, with Agnes Moorehead.
! No longer available Small | Large


 
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