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EYE-BALL MovieZone – Oscar Movies 1953 …

September 16, 2011
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Oscar Movies 1953:
EYE-BALL MovieZoneThe Nominees for the Best Picture in 1953 were:

1953 Nominees:

[Oscar Best Picture Winner – highlighted – click Nominee Movie links provided to navigate your way up and down the page – each Movie has additional links to Bit Torrent “downloads’ links, Wikipedia Links for all the information about the nominated movie, and the EYE-BALL MovieZone Reviews and ratings.]

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EYE-BALL MovieZoneReview – 1953

“From Here to Eternity”:

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Plot: [Pasted from Wikipedia] –

From Here to Eternity is a 1953 drama film directed by Fred Zinnemann and based on the novel of the same name by James Jones. It deals with the troubles of soldiers, played by Burt Lancaster, Montgomery Clift, Frank Sinatra and Ernest Borgnine stationed on Hawaii in the months leading up to the attack on Pearl Harbor. Deborah Kerr and Donna Reed portrayed the women in their lives.

The film won eight Academy Awards out of 13 nominations, including Best Picture, Best Director (Fred Zinnemann), Best Writing, Adapted Screenplay, Best Supporting Actor (Frank Sinatra) and Best Supporting Actress (Donna Reed)

EYE-BALL MovieZone Review …

This movie has very strong characters – Actors like Lancaster, Montgomery Cliff and Frank Sinatra all play brilliant character roles with troubles – set before the Pearl Harbour attach during WWII – each of the lead characters live out their pasts and future as soldiers trying to reconcile their life and choices to be made – they all want to improve themselves but the ghosts of the past get in the way.

Ernst Borgnine plays a vicious prison guard who likes to get even in his own way – his contribution makes Sinatra’s character shine even more.

The love interests – named actress’s Debra Kerr and Donna Reed play strong roles – they too have a past trying to catch up with them and it is this connective human responses that the Director uses to create the mix of interaction that makes the movie a hit.

It was nominated for 13 Oscars – winning 8 – but for mine – it is a raw edged and rugged movie and part of the post WWII America that wanted to personalise and expose the way of life in the military – it has dated and lost a lot of its true appeal.

EYE-BALL MovieZone Rating [scale 0-10]: 7.5/10 …

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EYE-BALL MovieZoneReview – 1953

“The Robe”:

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Summary: [Pasted from Wikipedia] –

The Robe is a 1953 American Biblical epic film that tells the story of a Roman military tribune who commands the unit that crucifies Jesus. The film was made by 20th Century Fox and is notable for being the first film released in the widescreen process CinemaScope.

It was directed by Henry Koster and produced by Frank Ross. The screenplay was adapted by Gina Kaus, Albert Maltz, and Philip Dunne from the Lloyd C. Douglas novel of the same name. The music score was composed by Alfred Newman and the cinematography was by Leon Shamroy.

It stars Richard Burton, Jean Simmons, Victor Mature and Michael Rennie, with Dean Jagger, Jay Robinson, Richard Boone, and Jeff Morrow.

The Robe had one sequel, Demetrius and the Gladiators.

Plot: [Pasted from Wikipedia] –

The action takes place in Ancient Rome, Judaea, Capri, and Galilee in a time period stretching from 32 A.D. to 38 A.D.

Marcellus Gallio (Richard Burton), son of an important Roman senator (Torin Thatcher) and himself a military tribune begins the film in a prologue that introduces the viewer to the might and scope of the Roman empire. He is notorious as a ladies’ man, but he is captivated by the reappearance of a childhood sweetheart Diana (Jean Simmons), ward of the Emperor Tiberius (Ernest Thesiger), in Caligula’s pavilion. As Caligula is the grandnephew and heir to Tiberius, Diana is unofficially promised in marriage to him.

When Caligula comes to the marketplace with military fanfare to take part in the slave auction, Marcellus makes the mistake of bidding against him for a defiant Greek slave Demetrius (Victor Mature) – and winning. Caligula feels he had been made a fool of in front of Diana, while Marcellus feels that he had wronged Demetrius by stopping him earlier when he had escaped from his slaveholders. Angrily Caligula leaves with Diana and the rest of his military escort and issues orders for Marcellus to receive a military transfer to Jerusalem in Palestine.

Marcellus has Demetrius released, and he orders him to go on his own to the Gallio home. Marcellus is surprised to find Demetrius waiting for him when he gets home. Unofficially Marcellus had freed Demetrius, but Demetrius feels honor bound to compensate Marcellus by being his servant.

Demetrius accompanies Marcellus to Palestine, but before the galley sails, Diana comes to see Marcellus, pledging her love for him and her intention to intercede on his behalf with Tiberius. Marcellus declares his love for Diana and asks her to make the emperor promise not to give her in marriage to Caligula.

Marcellus rides into Jerusalem with the centurion Paulus (Jeff Morrow) on the same day as Jesus’ triumphal entry on Palm Sunday. Jesus confronts Demetrius as he rides into Jerusalem, silently calling him with his eyes to be his follower. When Demetrius later finds out what the Romans have in store for Jesus, he tries to warn him about the intentions of the Romans to arrest him. However, Jesus has already been arrested, as Demetrius finds out from a chance meeting with Judas.

Jesus is arrested and condemned by Pontius Pilate (Richard Boone), the procurator, who sends for Marcellus to take charge of the detail of Roman soldiers assigned to crucify him. Marcellus is also told that he is being recalled to Italy by the emperor.

The reason Lloyd Douglas wrote the novel The Robe was to answer the question: what happened to the Roman soldier who won Jesus’ robe through a dice game? It is Marcellus that wins the robe, and he compels Demetrius to throw it over him as the two of them are caught in the rain on the way back into Jerusalem. It is then that Marcellus begins to feel remorse for the crucifixion of Jesus. When the robe is on him he has a painful seizure, and he orders Demetrius to take it off him. When Demetrius does so he has had enough: he curses Marcellus and the Roman Empire and runs away.

Marcellus now behaves like a madman haunted by nightmares of the crucifixion. What sets him off is any reference to being “out there” on Calvary. He cries out fitfully, “Were you out there?!” He does this in the presence of Tiberius himself when he reports to him on Capri. Fictionally Tiberius is portrayed as a benevolent elder statesman, who wants to help Marcellus, so, at the prompting of his soothsayer Dodinius (Francis Pierlot) and Marcellus’s own enthusiasm, he gives him an imperial commission to find and destroy the robe while gathering a list of names of Jesus’ followers. At Diana’s request Tiberius leaves her free to marry Marcellus even though Tiberius believes him to be mad.

After leaving Capri Marcellus is next seen sometime later with a Syrian guide Abidor (Leon Askin) outside the village of Cana. He is posing as a cloth merchant going about buying up homespun cloth. To further his investigation Marcellus pays exorbitant prices for any kind of cloth, even rags. Justus, a weaver in Cana (Dean Jagger), reprimands his fellow Christians for accepting such unfair prices as being contrary to the teachings of Jesus. Seeing Justus as a lead in his investigations Marcellus seeks to ingratiate himself with Justus by giving his young grandson Jonathan (Nicolas Koster) one of his pack donkeys. Marcellus also wanders in on a public performance by the paralytic Miriam as she sings a song of Jesus’ resurrection.

When Marcellus returns to his camp he is confronted by a greedy Abidor, who wants to turn in Justus and the others to Pilate, who has ordered the arrest of Jesus’ followers. Abidor, who is obsessed with making money threatens to tell the people of Cana that Marcellus crucified Jesus, which drives Marcellus to beat Abidor and send him away violently.

The next day Marcellus is furious with Jonathan for giving his donkey to his physically challenged friend David. Miriam, who is sitting nearby kindly confronts Marcellus, and urges him to see Peter (Michael Rennie), who has come to Cana with a Greek companion. Marcellus guesses that this is Demetrius and goes off to Shalum’s Inn to confront him.

Marcellus finds Demetrius alone, and demands that he get the robe and destroy it. Demetrius gives the robe to Marcellus, who refuses to touch it, and Demetrius tells him that if he wants it destroyed, he will have to destroy it himself. Marcellus picks the robe up with his sword, and as he becomes frozen with fear, the robe slides down the sword onto him. He is terrified, but this time, as the robe touches him, he finds that the pain he has been carrying since the robe first touched him vanishes and that he is no longer afraid. He feels the true power of the robe and of the one who wore it. In that moment he becomes a Christian.

The two men go outside and Justus calls the villagers together and begins to introduce Peter. But suddenly he is pierced by an arrow and falls. The assembly turns to see Paulus and a large detachment of Roman soldiers, with the gloating Abidor lurking among them. Several other villagers are killed before Marcellus intervenes, ordering them to stop. Paulus informs him that his orders are no longer valid; Tiberias is dead and Caligula is emperor. Marcellus thus has no choice but to fight a duel with Paulus, and after a prolonged struggle Marcellus prevails. Rather than killing Paulus, as is expected of him, Marcellus hurls his sword into a tree, thus winning the admiration of the villagers. He orders Paulus and his soldiers to leave.

Peter invites Marcellus to join him and Demetrius as missionaries. Marcellus hesitates, and when Peter tells him of his own denial of Jesus on the night he was arrested, Marcellus confesses his role in Jesus’ death. Peter points out to him that Jesus forgave him from the cross in the dramatic words showcased before, “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do” (Luke 23:34a). Marcellus then pledges his life to Jesus and agrees to go with them. Their missionary journey takes them to Rome, but they must proceed “undercover” with their base in the catacombs because the Emperor Caligula has proscribed them.

In Rome, Caligula summons Diana from her retreat at the Gallio home to tell her that Marcellus has become a traitor to Rome by being a Christian. He takes her to the guard room where a captured Demetrius is being tortured. Diana runs out of the palace to Marcipor (David Leonard), the Gallio family slave, who is a secret Christian. Diana guesses that Marcipor is a Christian and has seen Marcellus, and she gets him to take her to Marcellus.

Marcellus and Diana are reunited, and Marcellus tells her the story of the robe and his own conversion. Diana gives Marcellus information on where Demetrius is in the imperial palace, and Marcellus and his fellow Christians manage to rescue him. They are almost too late as Demetrius is near death, but Peter comes to the Gallio home where Demetrius has been taken and heals him.

A physician friend of Senator Gallio, Thaddeus (Thomas Browne Henry), who had been called in to help Demetrius, betrays Marcellus to Caligula when he resents the fact that Peter had healed Demetrius when he could not. Marcellus flees with Demetrius but, when they are pursued by soldiers, Marcellus gives himself up so that Demetrius can escape. He is captured and put on trial. At Diana’s request he agrees not to defy Caligula. He kneels to Caligula with the intent to renew his oath of loyalty, but when Caligula demands that he renounce Jesus, Marcellus refuses. Caligula condemns him to death. Diana seeks to join Marcellus, and she exposes Caligula as the “evil, insane monster” that he is. The film ends with Diana giving the robe to Marcipor and her and Marcellus walking out of the imperial palace into the clouds, their entrance into eternity.

EYE-BALL MovieZone Review …

Love Richard Burton in most of his movies – this is overacted and his quick-fire dialog is a turnoff …

Simmons is good but overshadowed by Burton … worth a look if you have nothing else to watch – this type of Roman saga has really dated …

EYE-BALL MovieZone Rating [scale 0-10]: 4.0/10 …

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EYE-BALL MovieZoneReview – 1953

“Roman Holiday”:

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Plot: [Pasted from Wikipedia] –

Roman Holiday is a 1953 romantic comedy directed and produced by William Wyler and starring Gregory Peck and Audrey Hepburn. It was written by John Dighton and Dalton Trumbo, though with Trumbo on the Hollywood blacklist, he did not receive a credit; instead, Ian McLellan Hunter fronted for him. Trumbo’s credit was reinstated when the film was released on DVD in 2003.

Hepburn won an Academy Award for Best Actress for her performance; the screenplay and costume design also won.

In the 1970s, both Peck and Hepburn were approached with the idea of a sequel, but the project never came to fruition. The film was remade for television in 1987 with Tom Conti and Catherine Oxenberg, who herself came from a European royal family.

EYE-BALL MovieZone Review …

This movie is a delightful gem in the mold of the classic love story.

It involves a Princess and heir to a throne [Audrey Hepburn] – and her dreams of having a day of freedom away from her structured and regimented life.  She sneaks away during the night and a Journalist down on his luck [Gregory Peck] – who is in need of a good story finds her sleeping on a stone fence – neither reveal their true identities but through a mix up the next day the Peck’s character learns who she is.

They spend a day together – Peck’s character trying to get his big story – the Princess just wanting to escape and spend a day like a normal person.  Peck tries to set her up for his story but ultimately falls for the innocence and charm of the Princess and it turns out to be a ‘brief encounter’ with a happy ending.

Hepburn is every bit the ‘goddess’ – her eyes sparkle – her perfect eyebrows and clean face lines eat up the camera … there is no more beautiful an actress and it is easy to see why millions fell in love with her.

The script is simple yet elegant and the Peck/Hepburn chemistry is obvious.  I cannot rave too much about Hepburn’s performance in this movie – she won the Best Actress award for her performance and it was an outstanding performance in a part that was ready made for someone with her charm and poise.

This movie is in stark contrast to all the other 1953 Nominees and if it had not been for the bullet proof performances by Burt Lancaster and Montgomery Cliff in “From here to Eternity”  – this movie would have won the Oscar.

If you are in the mood for a good love story and don’t mind Black and White movies – you will not be disappointed if you download and watch this movie.

EYE-BALL MovieZone Rating [scale 0-10]: 8.0/10 …

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EYE-BALL MovieZoneReview – 1953

“Julius Caesar”:

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Plot: [Pasted from Wikipedia] –

Julius Caesar is an 1953 MGM film adaptation of the play by Shakespeare, directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz, who also wrote the uncredited screenplay, and produced by John Houseman. The original music score is by Miklós Rózsa. The film stars Marlon Brando as Mark Antony, James Mason as Brutus, John Gielgud as Cassius, Louis Calhern as Julius Caesar, Edmond O’Brien as Casca, Greer Garson as Calpurnia, and Deborah Kerr as Portia.

EYE-BALL MovieZone Review …

Filmed in Black and White – it is a dialog piece more than the action scene drama’s that came later – Brando’s early scenes in this movie are so amateurish that it immediately was a turn off – not a movie I would want to watch again even though I am a fan of James Mason –

EYE-BALL MovieZone Rating [scale 0-10]: 4.0/10 …

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EYE-BALL MovieZoneReview – 1953

“Shane”:

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Summary: [Pasted from Wikipedia] –

Shane is a 1953 American Western film from Paramount. It was produced and directed by George Stevens from a screenplay by A.B. Guthrie Jr., based on the 1949 novel of the same name by Jack Schaefer. Its Oscar-winning cinematography was by Loyal Griggs. The film stars Alan Ladd, Jean Arthur (in her last film after a thirty-year career) and Van Heflin, and features Brandon De Wilde, Elisha Cook Jr., Jack Palance and Ben Johnson.

Shane was listed #45 in the 2007 edition of AFI’s 100 Years…100 Movies list and #3 on AFI’s 10 Top 10 in the category Western.

Plot: [Pasted from Wikipedia] –

A stranger who calls himself Shane (Alan Ladd) drifts into an isolated valley in the sparsely settled territory of Wyoming. It soon becomes apparent that he is a gunslinger, and he finds himself drawn into a conflict between simple homesteader Joe Starrett (Van Heflin) and powerful cattle baron Rufus Ryker (Emile Meyer), who wants to force Starrett and every other homesteader in the valley off the land. Shane accepts a job as a farmhand, but finds Starrett’s young son Joey (Brandon DeWilde) drawn to him for his strength and skill with a gun. Shane himself is uncomfortably drawn to Starrett’s wholesomely charming wife, Marian (Jean Arthur).

When Shane and the rest of the homesteaders go into town, Shane gets into a fistfight with Ryker’s men. With Joe’s help, they beat up Ryker’s men, and the shopkeeper orders them out. Ryker then declares that he and his men will kill the next time Shane or Joe return to the town.

As tensions mount between the factions, Ryker hires Jack Wilson (Jack Palance), a skilled gunslinger. After Wilson kills ex-Confederate Frank ‘Stonewall’ Torrey (Elisha Cook, Jr.), a hot-tempered Alabama homesteader who had stood up to him, the homesteaders have a funeral for him with many planning to leave afterwards. Once the funeral is over, the homesteaders see a fire burning in the distance. Ryker’s men have set fire to the house of one of the homesteaders, Lewis. The homesteaders then resolve to keep fighting and they promise to help rebuild the house despite fears that the same will happen to them. Joe Starrett decides to take it upon himself to kill Wilson and Ryker and save the town; however, one of the cowpunchers, who declares that he’s “quitting” Ryker, tells Shane that Joe is “up against a stacked deck.” Shane stops Joe, and the two men fight over who should go on to face Wilson. Shane regretfully uses his gun to hit Joe over the head and knock him out, knowing this was the only way to prevent Joe from facing Ryker and getting killed. Joey yells at Shane, and then turns to his father. Shane saddles up and rides to the town.

At the town, Shane walks into the saloon. He faces Wilson first; they both draw their guns and Shane shoots Wilson several times. Shane turns swiftly to his left and guns down Ryker. Shane turns to leave. Joey, having followed Shane from the farm, warns Shane of danger. Ryker’s brother is on the staircase with a Winchester rifle, and is able to fire first. He shoots Shane in the back, but then Shane returns fire and the rifleman collapses from the staircase onto the floor.

Joey runs up to Shane; Shane asks Joey to take care of the homestead and to watch over his family. The wounded Shane gets onto his horse and rides away. He is upright (looking down at the ground at night) with his left arm hanging to one side. He rides past the grave stones on Cemetery Hill, symbolically appearing to sink down amongst them.

The film does not explicitly indicate whether Shane survives the wound he received in the shootout. This has led to sometimes heated discussions among fans of the film, as depicted in the 1998 film The Negotiator.

EYE-BALL MovieZone Review …

I enjoyed the soft cowboy performance of Ladd – and it is easy to see how this movie resonated with moviegoers – well worth the time to download and view –

EYE-BALL MovieZone Rating [scale 0-10]: 5.5/10 …

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