Now With More Than 3600 Reviews! Go Nuts - Read 'Em All!!

WELCOME! Use the search engines on this site (or your own off-site engine of choice) to gain easy access to the complete MAKSQUIBS Archive; over 3600 posts and counting. (New posts added every day or so.)

You can check on all our titles by typing the Title, Director, Actor or 'Keyword' of your choice in the Search Engine of your choice (include the phrase MAKSQUIBS) or just use the BLOGGER Search Box at the top left corner of the page.

Feel free to place comments directly on any of the film posts and to test your film knowledge with the CONTESTS scattered here & there. (Hey! No Googling allowed. They're pretty easy.)

Send E-mails to . (Let us know if the TRANSLATE WIDGET works!) Or use the Profile Page or Comments link for contact.

Thanks for stopping by.

Monday, September 21, 2015


This version of the oft-filmed Robert Louis Stevenson War-of-the-Roses novel is from indie producer Edward Small, known for pinching modest budgets into lux-looking literary swashbucklers (THE COUNT OF MONTE CRISTO/’34; THE MAN IN THE IRON MASK/’39). But director Gordon Douglas, moving up from cheap programmers like the DICK TRACY series, is hemmed in by the backlot locations of Columbia Studios where Small had a production deal. Even with the sprawling novel whittled down to a sort of ROBIN HOOD knockoff, it’s undercharged, and a size or two too small. (Poor Edgar Buchanan fails³ in the familiar Alan Hale, Eugene Pallette and Patric Knowles ADVENTURES OF ROBIN HOOD/'38 spots.) Louis Hayward makes a bland hero as the young knight, home from war to find his Uncle (purring, slithery George Macready) running the castle after murdering Hayward’s noble father. (Shades of HAMLET.) Fortunately, there’s a network of support from secret forest dwelling fighters, including the vengeance-seeking Black Arrow bowman who helps lead him to the truth by including a message with every lethal shot. The film’s not bad, just blah. The one real kick comes late in the game when an unexpectedly fair-minded, funny, even sympathetic Duke of Gloucester (pre-Richard III days) comes on the scene. Too bad he can’t make damsel-in-distress Janet Blair worth fighting over.

DOUBLE-BILL: Producer Small took a more traditional approach to RICHARD III in TOWER OF LONDON/’62 with Vincent Price as villain King and Roger Corman as villain megger. Far less interesting than the balanced cameo seen here, but the film has its supporters.

No comments: