Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Fire Down Below|
Actors: Rita Hayworth, Robert Mitchum, Jack Lemmon, Herbert Lom, Bonar Colleano
Director: Robert Parrish
Genres: Action & Adventure, Indie & Art House, Drama
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Armies have marched over me
Steven Hellerstedt | 05/08/2004
(3 out of 5 stars)
"More football games have been lost and more movies ruined by bad time management.... FIRE DOWN BELOW has everything it needs to be a five-star classic - a charismatic cast headed by Rita Hayworth, Robert Mitchum and Jack Lemmon, a colorful and picturesque location in Tobago and Trinidad, and a compelling story of friendship, love and jealousy. Unfortunately, it practically grinds to a halt in the second half.
Felix (Robert Mitchum) and Tony (Jack Lemmon) own a tramp boat and make a living of sorts hiring it out. Felix is a crusty veteran and Tony is a fresh bud sowing some young wild oats. Life is good (if a little ragged) when Irena (Rita Hayworth) walks into their life and they agree to smuggle her to the small island of Santa Nada. Irena has a few secrets to keep and to escape from, and for $1000 Felix and Tony aren't asking many questions. They agree to take her there.
Will Tony fall for the dark-eyed Irena? Will Felix? Which one will she choose? Heck, we could plot this one ourselves and get it right. You can sniff this one out pretty fast, and there aren't a lot of surprises, but with a cast of this caliber it doesn't really matter.
The boys eventually have a falling out over Irena, and within a couple of plot-beats Tony finds himself a hired hand on a cargo ship. Add a little fog and another boat and there's a collision and Tony is pinned in the bulkhead.
And there we sit for pretty much the second half of the movie. Worried about the resolution of the Irena/Felix/Tony conflict, we're pinned under this plot twist way way way too long. Tug boats haul the ship into harbor, the US Navy is asked to winch or cut him out and we're along for each agonizing step. Minus two points for that.
If you're a fan of any of the leads this is worth your while. And it's pretty to look at. The dvd also contains Rita Hayworth trailers."
Overlooked Gem with great star power!!!!
Mark A. Wallace | Canada/Victoria | 08/15/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This DVD is an underrated movie that never seems to have gotten much attention.And it should have,because its a great movie.With a nice transfer to DVD,nice color and sharp picture.There are some fine performances from Robert Mitchum and Rita Hayworth.And as usual Jack Lemmon is strong,in a slightly more serious role for him at this time in his career.The DVD is a little pricey,and doesnt include any real features or extras.Nonetheless looks GREAT and is a fine little movie that i recommend to anyone who likes these 3 great actors/actresses.An overlooked gem of a movie that should be checked out.Cheers!"
A romantic trio in a drama of intrigue among small-time smug
Roberto Frangie | Leon, Gto. Mexico | 12/31/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Made on location in Trinidad, "Fire Down Below" was Rita Hayworth's return to the screen after a four-year absence...
During her screen absence Joseph L. Mankiewicz's "The Barefoot Contessa," which starred Ava Gardner as a Spanish dancing-girl who becomes first an international film star and then a Contessa, was released with great success... Although Mankiewicz had always denied there were fictional similarities between his film and Hayworth's own private life, most filmgoers and film gossips felt otherwise...
In fact they regarded "The Barefoot Contessa" as an obvious imitation or approximation of Rita's life, just as they had found similarities between her husband Orson Welles' film "Citizen Kane" and the life of newspaper tycoon William Randolph Hearst...
Therefore "Fire Down Below" had a sort of "built-in" curiosity about it and critics who for years had ignored Rita's acting abilities or were even willing to admit their possibilities, were now beginning to regard her as an actress instead of just a sex symbol...
Considerably older-looking, and playing a woman used and abused by many men, Rita had a few lines that contained cruel accuracies about her own life...
Entertaining studio fare
Trevor Willsmer | London, England | 06/17/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Nothing to do with Steven Seagal, 1957's Fire Down Below can be seen either as a typical Hollywood romantic triangle (although it's actually a British film) or, for the more trivia minded, as a footnote to the Bond films, with co-producer Albert R. Broccoli assembling various Bond team members five years before the event - the first M (Bernard Lee) and Blofeld (Eric Pholmann) in front of the cameras, production designer Syd Cain and special effects man Cliff Richardson behind them. The story is pretty simple: Robert Mitchum and Jack Lemmon eke out a precarious and less than legal living in Trinidad by ferrying tourists or the odd consignment of contraband in their rundown boat until one day their cargo - in this case displaced person Rita Hayworth, always one port ahead of a warrant - comes between them. Things reach a head when Lemmon finds himself trapped in the cargo hulk of a burning ship while Bernard Lee, Herbert Lom and Bonar Colleano try to free him before they're forced to abandon the ship in deep waters to avoid the entire harbor being destroyed.
While the first half of the film ambles along pleasantly enough, it's this section that really grips (and spectacularly eats up most of the budget), even though Mitch and Rita disappear for nearly 40 minutes while all this is going on. In fact, Hayworth all but disappears from the second half of the film entirely, having little to do once Lemmon decides to make an ill-fated smuggling run and making surprisingly little impact doing it, though it is your only chance to see her calypso dance with Tutte Lemkow! (Incidentally, it was while in Trinidad for this film that Mitchum was inspired to record one of the greatest albums of all time, Calypso is Like So: if you don't have it in your collection, you need to! Not to be outdone, Jack Lemmon is credited as one of the film's composers for his harmonica themes...)
There are few surprises (though Anthony Newley underplaying his part to pleasing effect is certainly one of them), but despite some clumsy editing in the early scenes it's enjoyable formulaic studio fair with a particularly nice use of old-fashioned CinemaScope, and Columbia's widescreen DVD has one of the best transfers I've seen from a 50s film. No extras other than trailers for Lady From Shanghai, Gilda and They Came to Cordura.