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Wednesday, September 30, 2009


I always include "Mababangong Bangungot" (Perfumed Nightmare) (1977) in one of my top ten list when ask what my top 10 Tagalog movies are. Kidlat Tahimik (Eric de Guia in real life), a prolific filmmaker, writer and actor whose films are commonly associated with the Third Cinema movement through their critiques of neocolonialism, directed this classic masterpiece. His other works include; Turumba (1981); Sinong lumikha ng yoyo? Sinong lumikha ng moon buggy? (1982); Why is Yellow Middle of Rainbow? (1994); Japanese Summers of a Filipino Fundoshi (1996).

There’s nothing even remotely nightmarish about Perfumed Nightmare. It’s as enchanting and poignant experience, a totally original seriocomic creation with an infectious and exuberant energy. The film is a semi-autobiographical fable by a young Filipino about his awakening to, and reaction against, American Cultural Colonialism. Born in 1942 during the Occupation, Kidlat spent “the next 33 typhoon seasons in a cocoon of American dreams.” This, then, is his perfumed nightmare: the lotusland of American technological promise. In his primitive village he worships the heroism of the Machine, the sleek beauty of rockets, the efficiency of industrialism. He’s the president of his village’s Werner Von Braun fan club. He longs to visit Cape Caneveral, to experience those shimmering images he knows from movies, from soldiers, from The Voice of America.

This film, winner of the International Critics Award of the Berlin Film Festival and a Blue Ribbon at the American Film Festival, is a dazzling testament to the liberty of the imagination. With his very first film, Kidlat Tahimik has introduced a classic.
(Gene Youngblood, L.A. FILMEX PROGRAM)


Sunday, September 27, 2009


Fourteen-year old Nora Aunor topped the Tawag ng Tanghalan in 1967. She went on to do some radio programs, recorded some singles and made her movie debut in Sampaguita’s All Over the World. Most of the movies she did with Sampaguita were initially “guest roles” and one of these was a Susan Roces-Eddie Gutierrez movie, Ang Pangarap Ko’y Ikaw, where she sang one number. Here’s that unforgettable scene and hope all of you will love it---

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


I got a chance to watch these two unforgettable classic movies one long weekend and was struck on the awesome charm of this gorgeous and stunning actress of the 40s. Acclaimed as one of the great beauties of her day, Gene Tierney (November 19, 1920 – November 6, 1991) was best-remembered for her performance in the title role of
Laura (1944) and her Academy Award-nominated performance for Best Actress in Leave Her to Heaven (1945). Both movies are cinematic gems that should be made available and appreciated by new generations of fans and movie enthusiasts.

"Laura" (1944) and "Leave Her To Heaven" (1945)

Still from "Laura" (1944)- In film noir, the central character often becomes obsessed with a woman, the femme fatale who is often the cause of his downfall or death. In "Laura," police detective Mark McPherson (Dana Andrews) falls asleep in front of a portrait of the dead Laura Hunt (Gene Tierney) only to wake to find her in the room.

Still from "Leave Her to Heaven" (1945)- Ellen Berent (Gene Tierney) will stop at nothing to make sure no one comes between her and her husband Richard Harland (Cornel Wilde). This includes letting his crippled brother Danny (Darryl Hickman) drown, and aborting her pregnancy by throwing herself down the stairs.

Source: Film Noir/ by Alain Silver & James Ursini/ Paul Duncan (Ed.)/ 2004

Monday, September 21, 2009


From the 53 major films he directed, Alfred Hitchcock made about 37 cameo appearances. His first appearance came in his third film, The Lodger (1927), in which he appeared twice. He also appeared twice in Under Capricorn (1949). These appearances were very tiny parts – sometimes he was in crowd shot or just walking. Even in Lifeboat (1944) which took place on a lifeboat, he managed to show up: he appeared in a newspaper ad for a weight loss product. In Dial M for Murder (1954), the setting of which was mostly filmed in a living room of a flat in suburban London, he was in a class reunion photo hanged on a wall.

Hitchcock, a great filmmaker, witty, funny man and a genius!

The complete lists (screencaps)---

"The Lodger" (1926-27)
At a desk in a newsroom (3 minutes in) and later in the crowd watching an arrest (92 minutes in)

"Easy Virtue" (1927)
Walking past a tennis court, carrying a walking stick, 15 minutes in.

"Blackmail" (1929)
Being bothered by a small boy as he reads a book in the subway, 11 minutes in.

"Murder" (1930)
Walking past the house where the muder was committed, an hour into the movie

"The 39 Steps" (1935)
Tossing some litter while Robert Donut and Lucie Mannheim run from the theater, 7 minutes into the movie.

"Young and Innocent" (1937)
Outside the courthouse, holding a camera, 15 minutes in.

"The Lady Vanishes" (1938)
Very near the end of the movie (90 minutes in) in Victoria Station, wearing a black coat and smoking a cigarette.

"Rebecca" (1940)
Walking near the phone booth in the final part of the film (123 minutes in), just after George Sanders makes a call.

"Foreign Correspondent' (1940)
11 minutes in, after Joel McCrea leaves his hotel, wearing a coat and hat and reading a newspaper.

"Suspicion" (1941)
Mailing a letter at the village postbox, 45 minutes in.

"Mr. & Mrs. Smith" (1941)
41 minutes through, passing Robert Montgomery in front of his building.

"Saboteur" (1942)
Standing in front of Cut Rate Drugs in New York as the saboteur's car stops, an hour in.

"Shadow of a Doubt" (1943)
On the train to Santa Rosa, playing cards, 17 minutes in.

"Lifeboat'" (1944)
In the newspaper ad for Reduco Obesity Slayer, being read on the boat by William Bendix, 25 minutes in.

"Spellbound" (1945)
Coming out of an elevator at the Empire Hotel, carrying a violin case and smoking a cigarette, 40 minutes in.

"Notorious" (1946)At a big party in Claude Rains mansion, drinking champagne and then quickly departing, an hour after the film begins.

The Paradine Case" (1947)
Leaving the train and Cumberland Station, carrying a cello, 36 minutes in.

"Under Capricorn" (1949)In the town square during a parade, wearing a blue coat and brown hat, in the first 5 minutes, and 10 minutes later, he is one of three men on the steps of Government House.

"Rope" (1949)
See the red neon sign on the right of the cityscape from the set

"Stage Fright" (1950)
Turning to look at Jane Wyman in her disguise as Marlene Dietrich's maid, 38 minutes in.

"Strangers on a Train" (1951)
Boarding a train with a double bass fiddle as Farley Granger gets off in his hometown, 10 minutes in.

"I Confess" (1953)
Crossing the top of a staircase after the opening credits, 1 minute in.

"Dial M For Muder" (1954)
On the left side of the class-reunion photo, 13 minutes into the film.

"Rear Window" (1954)
Winding the clock in the songwriter's apartment, a half hour into the movie.

"To Catch a Thief" (1955)
Sitting to the left of Cary Grant on a bus, 10 minutes in.

"The Trouble With Harry" (1955)
Walking past the parked limousine of an old man who is looking at paintings, 20 minutes into the film.

"The Wrong Man" (1956)
Narrating the prologue.

"The Man Who Knew Too Much" (1956)
Watching acrobats in the Moroccan marketplace (his back to the camera) just before the murder, 25 minutes in.

"Vertigo" (1958)
In a gray suit walking in the street, 11 minutes in.

"North By Northwest" (1959)
Missing a bus during the opening credits, 2 minutes in.

"Psycho" (1960)
4 minutes in, through Janet Leigh's window as she returns to her office. He is wearing a cowboy hat.

"The Birds" (1963)
Leaving the pet shop with two white terriers as Tippi Hedren enters, 2 minutes in.

"Marnie" (1964)
Entering from the left of the hotel corridor after Tippi Hedren passes by. He looks at Tippi, then looks at the camera, 5 minutes in.

"Torn Curtain" (1966)
Sitting in the Hotel d'Angleterre lobby with a blond baby, 8 minutes into the film.

"Topaz" (1969)
Being pushed in a wheelchair in an airport, half an hour in. Hitchcock gets up from the chair, shakes hands with a man, and walks off to the right.

"Frenzy" (1972)
In the center of a crowd, wearing a bowler hat, 3 minutes into the film: he is the only one not applauding the speaker.

"Family Plot" (1972)
In silhouette through the door of the Registrar of Births and Deaths, 41 minutes into the movie.


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