1956 in Movies

Movie reviews for movies released theatrically in 1956.

 

1. Bob le flambeur, directed by Jean-Pierre Melville (10/10)

It’s killing me that I cannot locate my review of this movie. One of the great all-time crime movies.

 

2. Invasion of the Body Snatchers, directed by Don Siegel (10/10)

This was my favourite “old” movie for years. I recently re-watched it and found that it had dated quite poorly. I still think it is pretty awesome for its time, despite the ending which could have been better. I stand by my initial opinion even if I have reservations.

 

2. The Killing, directed by Stanley Kubrick (10/10)

Also one of the great all-time crime movies and Kubrick’s first great film (after some major low-budget missteps). I have to say that the narration never bugged me when I was younger but now I see the problem. I feel like it doesn’t fit the film and was imposed afterward because somebody worried the audiences were too dumb.

 

4. The Searchers, directed by John Ford (9/10)

I watched this during my John Wayne phase.

 

5. Aparajito, directed by Satyajit Ray (9/10)

A true landmark in Indian cinema. Unfortunately, I did not write down my comments at the time.

 

6. The Man Who Knew too Much, directed by Alfred Hitchcock (6/10)

Hitchcock remade his own film for American audiences. I haven’t seen the original. This is one of his lesser films. Essentially along the same theme as North by Northwest.

 

7. The Man Who Never Was, directed by Ronald Neame (6/10)

I seem to remember this being mildly interesting.

 

8. Anastasia, directed by Anatole Litvak (6/10)

Read the brief review.

 

9. Written on the Wind, directed by Douglas Sirk (5/10)

Some people absolutely love Sirk and I think I know why: read the review.

 

10. Giant, directed by George Stevens (4/10*)

As a teen, this bored me to tears.

 

11. The Battle of the River Plate, directed by Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger (4/10*)

I saw this in my war movie phase, well before I knew who Powell and Pressburger were, or paid much attention to film techniques.

 

12. The Conqueror, directed by Dick Powell (2/10*)

I don’t know that I ever saw more than a few minutes of this when I “watched” it as a teen or young 20-something.

 

13. Godzilla, King of the Monsters! directed by Ishiro Honda, Terry O. Morse (1/10)

Somewhere I have written of my outrage at this movie, but I can’t find it right now. Basically, this is an insult. Some American producer saw a Japanese film, thought “Wow this will sell if only…” and then decided that American audiences couldn’t handle and / or wouldn’t pay to see the Japanese movie. The result is this: the original Japanese film inter-cut with new footage of Raymond Burr telling the Japanese what to do. Now, I’m not Japanese, but I can imagine that if this had been done to a Canadian movie, I would be livid regardless of the finished product. And, well, the finished product is terrible.

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