Way Down Cellar (1968)

I imagine that Way Down Cellar is something of a failure since I was more interested in how Beans and Skeeter’s hapless flag football team, the Jets, finished up the season than I was in the intrigue surrounding the crabby old man who was staying in the old Burton House (the same house is also seen in For the Love of Willadean) and doing mysterious things down in the basement. It’s especially difficult to work up any enthusiasm for a bunch of crooks who get outsmarted by a couple of kids that can’t even manage to execute a simple running play during the game they get shut out of in the opening moments of the film. Continue reading “Way Down Cellar (1968)”

The Treasure of San Bosco Reef (1968)

Let me disabuse you of the notion straightway that the titular treasure is anything awesome. As near as I could tell, it was mostly a bunch of crusty crap pulled up from the wreckage of an old ship. Various vases and pots that for all any of us know might have just been a bunch of leftover junk no one wanted. Did anyone confirm whether the ship’s manifest indicated it was on a voyage to the local shipyard’s giant yearly garage sale? Still, it was a bunch of baracled bric-a-bac a whole team of thieves were willing to kill for, so maybe it cleaned up real nice. Continue reading “The Treasure of San Bosco Reef (1968)”

Emil and the Detectives (1964)

Though the era of feature films made by the Walt Disney Company when Walt was still alive is often regarded as the golden age of Disney movies, 1964 proves that like any other studio, Disney was just as capable of releasing an enduring classic like Mary Poppins as well as tedious swill like Emil and the Detectives.

After a moderately eye-catching animated opening that gave you hope you were in for some intriguing cloak and dagger story, the film instantly fills the screen with such an odious experience, you wonder if you’re smelling 75 year old sauerkraut left over from the catering used at the West German filming locations. Continue reading “Emil and the Detectives (1964)”

The Boy Who Stole the Elephant (1970)

For those hoping that The Boy Who Stole the Elephant is like an Anarchist’s Cookbook for how to make off with circus animals, you will likely be underwhelmed with little British orphan boy Davey’s scheme to spirit away his soulmate, Queenie. He simply walks out of the circus tent with her in the middle of the night! While there is a certain genius in the simplicity of this plan, he didn’t count on one thing – James Bond’s biggest toothache of them all, Jaws! Continue reading “The Boy Who Stole the Elephant (1970)”

The Luck of the Irish (2001)

The Luck of the Irish is a made for Disney TV movie whose preachy message of tolerance and diversity is nonchalantly tossed overboard in the final act of the movie so that its conventional fantasy movie plot of recovering a powerful object from the villains can be served.

A lame attempt to rehab things in the final scene by bludgeoning the audience over the head with the star’s ill-advised attempt to make Irish step dancing cool and in one of the more cringeworthy moments in the history of film, then having him sing “This Land is Your Land” while members of the audience join in only serves to possibly explain why you never heard of any of the actors involved ever again. Continue reading “The Luck of the Irish (2001)”

The Island at the Top of the World (1974)

Island at the top of the World PosterThe Island at the Top of the World cannot be faulted for misleading the viewer about what awesome stuff might be stashed away on this island hidden in a cloud. All hopes of some fantastical treasure or creatures are immediately dashed when one character breathlessly advises that it contains the mythical graveyard of the whales. Surely there is something mythical that will take your breath away about it, but I’m guessing it’s just the overpowering stench of acres of dead whales. Continue reading “The Island at the Top of the World (1974)”