Tunes Of Glory (1960)
Directed by Ronald Neame
Starring Alec Guinness, John Mills, Dennis Price, Susannah York
The two finest “Sirs” in British film, Alec Guinness and John Mills, go head to head in this fantastic drama. Guinness plays a hard drinking commanding officer of a Scottish battalion who is replaced by a disciplined, university-educated officer, played by Mills, and they commence a battle of wills regarding the respect and loyalty of the men. Guinness and Mills are just outstanding, clearly each actor wanting to perform at their very best. Riveting drama that ends with a strong punch. Great support from Gordon Jackson and this was the first starring role for Susannah York, who has a fine role as Guinness’ daughter. A must see
Tonight was the first time I got to see Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope with an audience in a theater setting and what a theater setting it was with 18,000 people at The Hollywood Bowl with a live orchestra. The orchestra was so good and on point that I literally forgot for most of the movie that there was an orchestra playing in front of me. After, “A long time ago in a far, far away,” a rush of chills came over me when the orchestra launched off into the Star Wars Theme. It was also great to be with an audience to experience all the great parts of A New Hope together, to have people break out into huge applause when each character appeared on screen, and to have hundreds of audience members raising their light sabers at different times in the movie such as when the force was talked about or during a big battle scene. Afterwards, I saw many kids walking with their parents holding their light saber and I hoped the movie had the same effect on them that it did on me on when I was their age when I would eagerly rewind the VHS again so I could watch it one more time. #starwars#anewhope#episodeIV#hollywoodbowl#liveorchestra#lukeskywalker#georgelucas#vhs
Lawrence of Arabia (Dir. David Lean, 1962)
At No. 3 is perhaps one of the most beautiful, dramatically scored, journey of self-discovery ever put to film – David Lean’s masterpiece. The Best Film and Best Director winner of 1962, Lawrence of Arabia is recognised as one of the greatest and most influential British films ever made: inspiring the likes of Scorsese, Spielberg and even Tarantino – with the Super Panavision 70.
Though T. E. Lawrence still causes controversy to this day, this film glorifies the physical feats he accomplished, the impossibilities he undertook in leading an Arab rebellion consisting of some of the most honoured tribes in present day Iraq and Jordan to victory against the Ottoman Empire. Peter O’Toole magnificently brings him to life: his asexuality, detest of common vices, and the disgust of the habits and racist tendencies of other British soldiers of his time truly depict the man for what he was described by others as being – godly. If I could put the plot in layman’s terms, it is that of the modern-day Hercules.
The film is not perfect, it does not adhere to modern standards. There are essences of whitewashing, but this was 1962, filmmaking was no way near as progressive until In the Heat of the Night as documentarists and authors make out the 60s was. Lean reportedly used over 1,000 Arabic extras in the film and stories exist that those in government mistook Sir Alec Guinness as the real Faisal I of Iraq and approved of him. Omar Sharif’s Sheriff Ali is one the greatest anti-hero sidekicks in my opinion, his on-screen presence is truly something to marvel at though he is an entirely fictional character in a biopic/epic and one of Egypt’s best actors.
I couldn’t recommend this film enough – it towers over all the other epics with a sense of magic and mysticism uncommon others. Told in flashback but with an overture, intermission and exit music – fusing tradition with the new – coming in at 222 minutes the longest film to ever win Oscar. For those who haven’t watched it, I hope it captures your imagination the way it did mine as a young boy. I promised myself I’d make the Nefud crossing before I kick it.
Hoy también se cumplen 18 años del fallecimiento de Alec Guinness, a quien muchos recordarán por haber interpretado a Ben Kenobi en la primer película de la saga de Star Wars, A New Hope. Que la fuerza lo acompañe 😞✨ #AlecGuinness#OtroMasQueHablaDeCine