The Good Place
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Itâ(TM)s a little bit depressing that this masterpiece has been around for 78 years now, and it is still almost entirely unknown. (However, Hollywood brought this on itself by releasing too many great films during the Pre-Code years.) The immediate physical presence of this location and the actors is overpowering. The day scenes are actually filmed out in the middle of the desert, and everyone looks like they are one glass of water away from passing out. Aline MacMahon looks like she stepped out of a Dorothea Lange photo. When the actors walk toward the camera, Leroy lets them come slightly too close for comfort, putting us in their space. A girl and a gas station, thatâ(TM)s all you need for a movie.
For some reason, this is now in rotation on the MGM HD channel. A woman (Patricia Healey) takes a trip on a city-run tour bus around Manchester. The whole thing is filled with surreal touches, but what really makes the movie is the cinematography of Miroslaw Ondricek, particularly when the film changes into color from black-and-white.
This movie is pretty much perfect. All the songs are great.
I was hoping it would become a kung fu Young Mr. Lincoln but it was still pretty decent. Acts 1 & 2 the best. (A while back Garry Wills wrote a book called John Wayne's America. The corresponding book for China would have to be about Jet Li. )