Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|The Frightened City|
Actors: Herbert Lom, Sean Connery, John Gregson, Alfred Marks, Yvonne Romain
Director: John Lemont
Genres: Indie & Art House, Classics, Drama, Mystery & Suspense
Interesting British Gangster Flick.
peterfromkanata | Kanata, Ontario Canada | 01/26/2004
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This early 60s British crime drama is fairly routine and, of course, is mainly of interest today because it gave a young actor named Sean Connery a good role before he became an international sensation as Bond, James Bond.The plot is not very complicated. Various London gangs are competing against one another in the extortion racket--also known as "protection" or "insurance". Pubs, clubs and other small businesses and their patrons have very nasty "accidents" unless they pay regular fees to hoodlums. A crooked, brainy financier played by Herbert Lom sees a lucrative "business opportunity" here, if he can gets these gangs to unite and divide up the city. He contacts one of the gang-leaders, a sleazy night-club owner played by Alfred Marks, and together they set up a syndicate. To handle day-to-day operations, they hire a young, smart, tough-as-nails hood--enter Mr. Connery. Of course, Scotland Yard is very concerned, in its British, calm, under-stated way--it has the dauntless John Gregson on the case.
The plot is also spiced up with some sex appeal--the lovely, curvaceous Yvonne Romain plays a night-club singer, and Herbert Lom's girlfriend--at least until she sees Connery and he sees her ! Then it's bye bye Herbie !It won't give too much away to say that the gangs do not stay united, and that Connery is double-crossed and out for revenge.
He has a good showdown with Lom and Marks.If you are a Connery fan, particularly if like me, you consider him to be the best Bond, this film is very interesting. Frankly, there is not a quantum leap between his character here and Bond--dangerous, charming, womanizing and physically intimidating. This was good preparation for his most famous role. Herbert Lom is his usual serious, sinister self ( until those Pink Panther movies loosened him up ! ). Special kudos to Alfred Marks as the gang-leader--this unscrupulous, oily character really keeps the movie together.Famous British composer/band leader/musician/record producer Norrie Paramor, who has a cameo behind a piano, composed the lively, jazzy score. The title theme was a big hit for Britain's premier instrumental group, the Shadows.The DVD has a nice, clear B & W picture and mono sound. If you like British crime films and want to see a living legend on the very edge of stardom, I suspect you will enjoy this disc very much. It may not be as brutal or profane as "The Long Good Friday" or "Sexy Beast", more recent entries in the UK gangster sweepstakes, but it still provides an hour and a half of solid entertainment."
Weird '60s British Noir Featuring Primo Sean Connery
peterfromkanata | 02/22/2003
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This is kind of weird. It might be it was part of some genre in British cinema of the early '60s. What genre, I'm not sure. Sort of psuedo-film noir with a touch of rock 'n' roll (a couple of bizarre musical numbers in here). Herbert Lom is his usual professional self; he was always great, whether doing "Pink Panther" movies or more serious dramas. Sean Connery is on hand in all his muscular, youthful glory. This film was made about a year or so before "Dr. No" and Sean's debut as Bond, James Bond. He was quite a delicious slab o' beefcake back in his day. And not a half-bad actor. He's really the only thing that makes this DVD worth owning. If you're a Connery fan, your boy will not disappoint you in this one, in either the performance or looks department. Oh, and there's some kind of plot in this thing, too, about the London police fighting the underworld. You'll figure it out if you choose to spring for this one."