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It’s taken a while but we’ve finally viewed all the “P” movies on our list.

I liked these a lot:

  • Patton — 1970. Great character study.
  • Persona — 1967. A serious avantgarde Swedish art film that’s perplexing and mysterious and somehow not boring. It’s actually quite gripping, beautiful and painful to watch, even though I didn’t understand it.
  • Picnic at Hanging Rock — 1975. Mysterious and atmospheric.
  • A Place in the Sun — 1951. Compelling performances, and some interesting editing.
  • Il Postino — 1995. Sweet.
  • Pretty Baby — 1978. Decadent and disturbing, yet weirdly nostalgic.

These were kind of a mixed bag:

  • The Philadelphia Story — 1940. A little long and a little dated, but still pretty funny.
  • People Will Talk — 1951. Cary Grant is annoying here, and the film as a whole is smug and smarmy, but the supporting characters save it from being a complete waste. I confess the political subtext eluded me completely.
  • Possessed — 1947. Engrossing psycho-noir.
  • The Point — 1971. Psychedelic kiddie cartoon adventure.
  • The Postman Always Rings Twice — 1981. I think I liked the original better.
  • Prizzi’s Honor — 1985. Mildly amusing, but nothing special. Very 80’s.
  • Punch Drunk Love — 2002. Artsy, beautiful, fun, loveably stupid. Sandler’s best film.
  • Prime Suspect — 1991-2004. I don’t much care for police procedurals, but this TV series with Helen Mirren is eminently watchable. The fourth season lags a bit, but the sixth season more than makes up for it with hugely improved cinematography. Mirren’s character is compelling, but what really engaged me was the long form and the social issues blended into each case.
  • The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes — 1970. Fun, but could have been better.

And these, I did not enjoy so much:

  • Peeping Tom — 1960. Comparisons are inevitable, but this pales next to Psycho.
  • The Pawnbroker — 1965. A good film, maybe even great, but brutally depressing, and I didn’t enjoy it.
  • A Piece of the Action — 1977. With these stars you’d think this would be top-notch. Intriguing start, but second half is progressively more awful.

Note: These are the P films I’d wanted to see but never had; we didn’t watch such greats as Platoon, The Player, The Prisoner, The Producers, Pulp Fiction or Psycho because I’ve already seen ’em. And who could forget Plan Nine from Outer Space?

Published inFilm & Video


  1. Scottica Scottica

    You should check out “The Pawnbroker”, the newest cartoon version of this tragic tale shown on USA Saturday mornings.

  2. McCarthyism is the politcal subtext for “People Will Talk.” Academic McCarthyism in particular. How well they carry it off is another issue.

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