TV’s Mightiest Mouthpiece—The Noir Roots of Perry Mason

TV’s Mightiest Mouthpiece—The Noir Roots of Perry Mason

CROOKED MOUTHPIECES date back to the era of 1930s porto-noir gangster movies (reaching their apogee with Louis Calhern’s turn in The Asphalt Jungle), but crusading defense attorneys who trod the line between cleverness and corruption proved to be scarce onscreen.   ...
Rose & Joan:  Rest in Peace

Rose & Joan: Rest in Peace

I was deeply saddened to learn of the recent passing of Rose Freeman aka Joan Taylor who was a featured actress in movies and television from 1949 until her retirement in 1963. Rose was a special lady and we had a rather unusual relationship that began over five years...

Final Curtain for an Actor’s Actor

When I found out that Karl Malden died last week, I initially recalled many of my favorite roles that he played and thought about how much he would be missed. His peaceful demise at 97 years of age doesn’t qualify as a tragedy, but even as a signpost of normal...

Put your flag at half-mast for James Whitmore

James Whitmore died the other day and I selfishly thought, “There’s goes another irreplaceable actor that I will never get to meet.” The more I learned about Whitmore, the more it seems he might have been an irreplaceable human being. Whitmore first...

A Chat with Ernest Borgnine

  Here’s a link to my chat with Ernest Borgnine on Filmmonthly. Ernie tells it like it was. Great guy. Alan...

The Noble Gentleman

Ricardo Montalban died today and the world lost a veneer of badly needed class. I never met the man, but I sure admired him. His memoir, Reflections, A Life in Two Worlds published in 1980 is only 163 brief pages. I’ve had it in my library for years. No matter...