Category Archives: books

What’s Love Got to Do With It?: “El gran amor del conde Drácula” (1973)

          “El gran amor del conde Drácula” (1973)     Popularly recognized by Euro Horror enthusiasts for his continuing role as lycanthrope Wademar Daninsky, Paul Naschy portrays an unexpectedly sentimental variation of cinema’s favorite vampire in “El … Continue reading

Posted in books, grindhouse, horror, Movies, Romance, Spanish films, vampires, women, writing | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

25 Pictures in Search of a Theme: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Sept. 2019 Edition, Vol. 133524.48

25 Pictures in Search of a  Theme: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Sept. 2019 Edition, Vol. 133524.48s     Since the inception of Chandler Swain Reviews, we have engaged in the constant struggle between the search for Art and depth … Continue reading

Posted in biography, books, Boston, Cecil B. DeMille, comedy, History, horror, Movies, Mystery, photography, Romance, women, writing | 1 Comment

Death by Indifference: “Mr. Wong, Detective” (1938)

    “Mr. Wong, Detective”  (1938)      The initial film incarnation of Hugh Wiley’s detective creation, first popularized in 1934 in Collier’s, “Mr. Wong Detective”, presents the stylish and erudite investigator in a mystery that is fairly unworthy of a … Continue reading

Posted in books, Boris Karloff, crime, movie reviews, Movies, Mystery, short stories, writing | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Conduct Unbecoming: “The Night of the Generals” (1967)

       “The Night of the Generals”   (1967)     The makers of any film based on Hans Hellmut Kirst’s 1962 novel The Night of the Generals face a formidable task in that the author indulges in an sizeable amount of strategically inserted … Continue reading

Posted in books, crime, History, movie reviews, Movies, Mystery, Peter O'Toole, World War II, writing | Tagged | 1 Comment

Firearms For Fun and Profit: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Aug. 2019 Edition, Vol. .38 Caliber

Firearms for Fun and Profit:  Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Aug. 2019 Edition, Vol. .38 Caliber     Let us consider, for a moment,  the strained logic inherent in the Constitutional inalienable right to be contrary, hypocritical and downright stupid … Continue reading

Posted in biography, books, Drive-In Movies, film noir, grindhouse, History, Movies, Musicals, Mystery, photography, westerns, women | 1 Comment

Reserved Seating: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, July 2019 Edition, Vol. A7

Reserved Seating:  Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, July 2019 Edition, Vol. A7     Movies are a funny business (Unless the studios are attempting a comedy, in which case Hollywood can be the most depressing place on Earth.) and the … Continue reading

Posted in books, Boston, comedy, Drive-In Movies, History, Movies, Mystery, photography, politics, silent movies, Television, theater, women, writing | 3 Comments

Variety is the Spice of Life: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, June 2019 Edition, Vol. 57

Variety is the Spice of Life: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, June 2019 Edition, Vol. 57     In keeping with the CSR tradition of taking an entire month to upgrade, update and perform a much needed Spring Cleaning on the … Continue reading

Posted in biography, books, comedy, History, horror, movie reviews, Movies, photography, Romance, sex, theater, women, writing | 8 Comments

Stars Behind Bars: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, May 2019 Edition, Vol. 10 – 20

Stars Behind Bars: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, May 2019 Edition, Vol. 10 – 20 With the recent collegiate scandal involving several prominent Hollywood actresses doing their thespian best to convince a disgusted populace that their attempts to inflict their … Continue reading

Posted in biography, books, British films, comedy, crime, Drive-In Movies, education, History, Movies, Mystery, westerns, women, writing | 4 Comments

By the Colouring Book: “Die, Monster, Die!” (1965)

            “Die, Monster, Die” (1965)     The literary reputation of H.P. Lovecraft receives a glancing body blow with “Die, Monster, Die!”, an extremely casual adaptation of his celebrated short story The Colour Out of Space; a film … Continue reading

Posted in books, Boris Karloff, Drive-In Movies, H.P. Lovecraft, horror, Movies, Roger Corman, science fiction, short stories, writing | Tagged , | 7 Comments

-30-: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, April 2019 Edition, Vol. 1984

-30-: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, April 2019 Edition, Vol. 1984     Now that the two year Mueller investigation has reached the obvious conclusion that indeed there has been blatant seditious collusion between Russian interests to undermine and interfere with … Continue reading

Posted in biography, books, Boston, comedy, crime, History, Movies, politics, Television, westerns, women, writing | Tagged , | 9 Comments

“Across 110th Street” (1972)

               “Across 110 Street”  (1972)     Barry Shear’s “Across 110th Street” walks the precarious line between the gritty urban cop thriller for which the standard was set by the previous year’s “The French Connection” … Continue reading

Posted in black cinema, Blaxploitation, books, crime, Movies, racism, writing | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Chandler’s Trailers: “The Life and Times of Xaviera Hollander” (1974)

   “The Life and Times of Xaviera Hollander” (1974)  Disregarding the content of the real-life Hollander’s memoirs ‘The Happy Hooker’, Larry G. Spangler’s film is merely an extremely crude patchwork of lackluster sex scenes framed as flashbacks as a fictitious rendition … Continue reading

Posted in books, erotica, grindhouse, movie reviews, Movies, pornography, sex, women, writing | Tagged | 2 Comments

Chandler’s Trailers: “The Holcroft Covenant” (1985)

The resurgence of the Third Reich seems to be popular sport for thriller novelists seeking an easily identifiable scapegoat for global chicanery, and nowhere has this premise been given a more haphazard treatment than in John Frankenheimer’s film of the … Continue reading

Posted in books, espionage, History, John Frankenheimer, Michael Caine, Movies, Mystery, Reviews, World War II, writing | 2 Comments

67 Years and No Relief in Sight: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, March 2019 Edition, Vol. 1952

  67 Years and No Relief in Sight: Classic Film Photo Quiz, Mar. 2019 Edition, Vol. 1952     Some men are born to greatness. Some have greatness thrust upon them, And some just won’t go away. Which brings us … Continue reading

Posted in biography, black cinema, books, British films, comedy, crime, History, Movies, Musicals, Mystery, Romance, women, writing | 7 Comments

The Spy With Alfie’s Face: “The Jigsaw Man” (1983)

         “The Jigsaw Man”  (1983)     Featuring a story which obviously taking its cue from real-life double agent scandals (just where would half of the British espionage films have found their inspiration without Kim Philby?) Terence … Continue reading

Posted in books, British films, Cold War, espionage, Laurence Olivier, Michael Caine, Movies, Romance, writing | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Lure of the Siren: “Carmen” (1915)

          “Carmen”  (1915)      If a proper movie translation of Prosper Mérimée’s novella “Carmen” is to be realized, the film must positively reek of earthiness; it must relay a passion so irresistible in its attraction … Continue reading

Posted in books, Cecil B. DeMille, History, Movies, Reviews, Romance, silent movies, women, writing | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Fragility: “David and Lisa” (1962)

     “David and Lisa”  (1962)     Hollywood seems reluctant to ignore a good story about mental illness as the actors are given to unleashing the hounds in roles that are traditional award magnets, while directors are afforded the … Continue reading

Posted in books, children, education, Movies, parenting, psychiatry, Romance, writing | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Twenty Five on the Black Hand Side: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Feb. 2019 Edition, Vol. 46

Twenty Five on the Black Hand Side:  Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Feb. 2019 Edition, Vol. 46     Being that February has been designated Black History Month by every U.S. President since 1976 (while Congress has been completely inactive … Continue reading

Posted in biography, black cinema, Blaxploitation, books, comedy, Drive-In Movies, History, Jim Brown, Movies, Musicals, women, writing | 2 Comments

Concession Stand Bites: “Murder Inc.” (1960)

“Murder Inc.” (1960) Starring Stuart Whitman, May Britt, Peter Falk, Henry Morgan, David J. Stewart, Simon Oakland, Morey Amsterdam, Joseph Bernard, Vincent Gardenia. Written by Irve Tunick & Mel Barr, based on the book by Burton Turkus and Sid Feder. … Continue reading

Posted in books, crime, History, movie reviews, Movies, women, writing | Tagged , | 3 Comments

Concession Stand Bites: “A Game of Death” (1945)

“A Game of Death” (1945) Starring John Loder, Audrey Long, Edgar Barrier, Russell Wade. Written by Norman Houston, based on the story by Richard Connell. Directed by Robert Wise. First remake of the classic “The Most Dangerous Game” finds big … Continue reading

Posted in books, fay wray, movie remakes, Movies, Reviews, Robert Wise, short stories, writing | 2 Comments

Concession Stand Bites: “Shaft” (1971)

“Shaft” (1971) Starring Richard Roundtree, Moses Gunn, Charles Cioffi. Directed by Gordon Parks. Written by Ernest Tidyman, based on his novel. The blaxploitation hit that supposedly started the genre into short-lived high gear is neither blaxploitation nor the hit that … Continue reading

Posted in black cinema, Blaxploitation, books, crime, Drive-In Movies, Movies, music, New York City, writing | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Concession Stand Bites: “Slaughterhouse-Five” (1972)

“SLAUGHTERHOUSE-FIVE” (1972) Starring Michael Sacks, Ron Leibman, Valerie Perrine, Eugene Roche, Perry King, Kevin Conway. Directed by George Roy Hill. Written by Stephen Geller based on the novel by Kurt Vonnegut Jr. When the film of a seemingly unfilmable novel … Continue reading

Posted in books, movie reviews, Movies, Reviews, Romance, science fiction, World War II, writing | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

Concession Stand Bites: “Dracula” (1931)

“DRACULA” (1931) Starring Bela Lugosi, Dwight Frye, Helen Chandler, David Manners, Edward Van Sloane. Directed by Tod Browning and an uncredited Karl Freund. Written by Garret Ford, from the play by Hamilton Deane and John L. Balderston, based on the … Continue reading

Posted in books, horror, movie reviews, Movies, Pre-Code Movies, Reviews, theater, vampires, writing | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Concession Stand Bites: “36 Hours” (1965)

“36 Hours” (1965) Starring James Garner, Eva Marie Saint, Rod Taylor, Werner Peters, John Banner, Alan Napier. Written by George Seaton, based on the story “Beware of the Dogs” by Roald Dahl and a story by Carl K. Hittleman & … Continue reading

Posted in books, espionage, History, James Garner, Movies, psychiatry, Rod Taylor, Romance, short stories, World War II, writing | Tagged , | 2 Comments

Chandler’s Trailers: “The Boys From Brazil” (1978)

    Beware actors who protest their image too much. In the case of Franklin J. Schaffner’s “The Boys From Brazil”, the thespian in question is none other than venerable good guy Gregory Peck who makes a career backflip to … Continue reading

Posted in books, Gregory Peck, Laurence Olivier, movie reviews, Movies, music, Reviews, science, World War II | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Concession Stand Bites: “Airport” (1970)

“Airport” (1970) Starring Burt Lancaster, Dean Martin, Jean Seberg, George Kennedy, Helen Hayes, Van Heflin, Maureen Stapleton, Lloyd Nolan. Directed by George Seaton. Written by George Seaton, based on the novel by Arthur Hailey. The film credited with instigating the … Continue reading

Posted in books, Burt Lancaster, Dean Martin, disaster films, Drive-In Movies, movie reviews, Movies, Reviews | 2 Comments

Primitives: “The Lost World” (1925)

           “The Lost World”  (1925)    Based upon the 1912 adventure novel by Sherlock Holmes scribe, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Harry O. Hoyt’s 1925 “The Lost World” presents Conan Doyle’s less well known but equally estimable … Continue reading

Posted in animation, books, movie reviews, Movies, Romance, silent films, silent movies, women, writing | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

A Not So Fine Madness: “A Reflection of Fear” (1972)

       “A Reflection of Fear”  (1972)   Cinematographers who assume the director’s mantle often produce movies which heavily favor the visual rather than the contextually comprehensible, with the fledgling filmmaker often failing to make allowances for the fact … Continue reading

Posted in books, Canada, movie reviews, Movies, Mystery, Reviews, women, writing | Tagged , , , | 5 Comments

Solo: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Jan. 2019 Edition, Vol. 1

Solo:  Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Jan. 2019 Edition, Vol. 1     The act of being alone comes in many forms in the cinema, from a voluntary solitude to an imposed seclusion, with the reaction to such isolation ranging … Continue reading

Posted in biography, books, British films, Bruce Dern, comedy, History, movie remakes, Movies, science fiction, silent movies, Steve McQueen, women | 4 Comments

Overcooked: “Coma” (1978)

                     “Coma”  (1978)      In his debut novel ‘Coma’, Robin Cook presented an unlikely set of circumstances concerning a vast criminal conspiracy within a fictitious Boston hospital, that stretched the very … Continue reading

Posted in books, Boston, medicine, Michael Crichton, Movies, Mystery, Richard Widmark, Romance, women, writing | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Saving Santa: “The Christmas That Almost Wasn’t” (1966)

         “The Christmas That Almost Wasn’t”  (1966)     Hollywood (a popular cultural abstract which we use as a convenient shorthand to identify the purely commercial cinema regardless of geographical origin) may be many things, but a … Continue reading

Posted in books, children, children's books, Christmas, fantasy, holidays, Movies, Musicals, Santa Claus, writing | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Ho Ho Ho: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Dec 2018 Edition, Vol. $50hr

Ho Ho Ho: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Dec. 2018 Edition, Vol. $50hr     If not the oldest profession, it certainly would counted high on the list of most depicted professions on the silver screen. We are, of course, … Continue reading

Posted in books, cinema, Eartha Kitt, History, Italian cinema, Movies, Musicals, sex, Sophia Loren, theater, westerns, women | 11 Comments

Seasons Gratings: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, 2018 Advent Calendar Edition, Vol. 50% off

Seasons Gratings: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, 2018 Advent Calendar Edition, Vol. 50% off     In observance of this festive holiday season, the good folk at Chandler Swain Reviews have decided to desist from the usual obvious jabs at Hillary … Continue reading

Posted in books, Boston, Christmas, Doris Day, holidays, humor, Movies, photography, politics, theater, women, writing | 8 Comments

Who’s That Sleeping in My Head?: “The Reincarnation of Peter Proud” (1975)

       “The Reincarnation of Peter Proud”  (1975)     What is it about extrasensory activity in movies that makes you want to run the other way? If a character is blessed with precognitive visions, it is an inevitable curse leading to … Continue reading

Posted in books, movie reviews, Movies, music, Mystery, new england, psychiatry, Romance, women, writing | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

The Feminine Mystique: “I Want What I Want” (1972)

      “I Want What I Want”  (1972)     A young man hesitatingly sneaks looks at peeks as pretty girls as they pass by, with an uncomfortable longing that will turn out to have less to do with … Continue reading

Posted in books, British films, Ed Wood, movie reviews, Movies, sex, women, writing | Tagged , , , | 10 Comments

All Spaced Out: Classic Film Photo Quiz, Nov. 2018 Edition, Vol.109876543210

    All Spaced Out:  Classic Film Photo Quiz, Nov. 2018 Edition, Vol. 109876543210     With the idea of a Space Force looming within striking distance in the political ether (does this mean we can arm with ray guns … Continue reading

Posted in books, History, Movies, politics, science, science fiction, women, writing | Tagged , , , | 14 Comments

From the Ashes: “Frankenstein” (1910)

                “Frankenstein”  (1910)     Though appreciably compromised in its filmic translation from the novel by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley (an introductory title acknowledges the film to be a “liberal adaptation”), not only due … Continue reading

Posted in books, fRANKENSTEIN, horror, movie reviews, Movies, Reviews, science, silent films, silent movies, theater, writing | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Rainy Day Monday: Classic Film Photo Images Quiz, Oct. 2018 Edition, Vol. 23

Rainy Day Monday: Classic Film Photo Images Quiz, Oct. 2018 Edition, Vol. 23     Welcome again guys and chicklets to yet another in the long suffering series known as The Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, brought to you, as … Continue reading

Posted in books, comedy, erotica, History, horror, movie reviews, Movies, Mystery, photography, Romance, women, writing | 8 Comments

Sweet Sixteen Party, or: Men Bad- A Demented World of Women in Peril: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Special Congressional Misandry Edition, Vol.37-24-36

Sweet Sixteen Party, or: Men Bad- A Demented World of Women in Peril:  Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Special Congressional Misandry Edition, Vol. 37-24-36     Caught in a fashionable wave of gender activism, in which the very use of … Continue reading

Posted in books, Boston, History, humor, Movies, psychiatry, Romance, women | Tagged , , , | 5 Comments

The Return of the Classic Film Clip Quiz

  The Return of the Classic Film Clip Quiz     Let us reintroduce this minor little visual quiz where we ask the musical question: Name the film clips shown. (Well, it’s not really a question, but it’s our discretion … Continue reading

Posted in biography, books, comedy, dance, erotica, History, horror, Movies, Musicals, Mystery, Romance, silent films, westerns | 8 Comments

City of Fallen Angels: “To Live and Die in L.A.” (1985)

        “To Live and Die in L.A.”          (1985)     Former Secret Service agent Gerald Petievich’s novel “To Live and Die in L.A.” might have seemed a natural for cinematic adaptation, given that the book is written in such a lean, … Continue reading

Posted in books, crime, Los Angeles, Movies, Reviews, William Friedkin, writing | Tagged , , , , | 7 Comments

Labor Pains: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Sept. 2018 Edition, Vol. 925/Remedial Reprint

_______________________________________________________________ Labor Pains:  Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Sept. 2018 Edition, Vol. 925/Remedial Reprint     The American cinema celebrates many things-  vacuous comic book heroics, scatological crudity, infantilism, serial sadism, non-NRA gun violence  -but the labors of the American working … Continue reading

Posted in books, Boston, comedy, History, Movies, Musicals, New York City, politics, Reviews, silent movies, theater, women, writing | 7 Comments

Labor Pains: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Sept. 2018 Edition, Vol. 925

Labor Pains:  Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Sept. 2018 Edition, Vol. 925     The American cinema celebrates many things-  vacuous comic book heroics, scatological crudity, infantilism, serial sadism, non-NRA gun violence  -but the labors of the American working man and … Continue reading

Posted in books, Boston, comedy, History, Movies, Musicals, photography, politics, Puzzles, Romance, theater, women, writing | 13 Comments

Up the Greek Without a Paddle: “Boy on a Dolphin” (1957)

     Up the Greek Without a Paddle:  “Boy on a Dolphin”  (1957)      Adventure films, which were especially plentiful in the colorful world of 1950’s cinema, generally included the most basic ingredients deemed necessary to draw the audiences … Continue reading

Posted in Alan Ladd, books, movie reviews, Movies, Reviews, Romance, Sophia Loren, women, writing | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Feather Dusting: “Le Journal d’une femme de chambre” (1964)

        “Le Journal d’une femme de chambre”  (1964)     Considering the rich mining afforded by Octave Mirbeau’s 1900 novel “Le Journal d’une femme de chamber”, a work encompassing pointedly satiric critical observations on class, sexuality and … Continue reading

Posted in art house cinema, books, French cinema, Jeanne Moreau, Luis Bunuel, movie remakes, Movies, women, writing | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Father’s Daze: “Casanova Brown” (1944)

      “Casanova Brown”  (1944)     “Casanova Brown” is an example of the importance of the use of what might be best described as the pixilated lilt in filming humorous materials. A romantic comedy in which a chronic … Continue reading

Posted in 1940's movies, books, comedy, movie remakes, Movies, parenting, Reviews, Romance, theater, women, writing | Tagged , | 3 Comments

Without a Clue: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Aug. 2018 Edition, Vol. 52

Without a Clue:  Classic Film Images Photo Quiz,  Aug. 2018 Edition, Vol. 52     With the summer winding down, it seemed appropriate to publish a photo quiz that was (in our estimation, since we know the answers), a breeze, … Continue reading

Posted in books, Boston, History, movie reviews, Movies, photography, Reviews, silent films, theater, women, writing | 2 Comments

Stayin Cool: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Special 4th of July 2018 Edition, Vol. 1776

Cool and Refreshing:  Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, Special 4th of July 2018 Edition, Vol. 1776 With the current East Coast heatwave setting record temperatures exceeding those of the last time we had a warm day (it’s not really global … Continue reading

Posted in animation, biography, books, British films, comedy, holidays, Movies, photography, Romance, science fiction, women, writing | 7 Comments

State of the Art: Isn’t Brie Just Another Name For Cheese?

       At a recent celebration of the annual Women in Film Crystal + Lucy Awards (which once again demonstrated that [1] all of the good names for award presentations have already been taken, and [2] if there were … Continue reading

Posted in books, Culture, Film Criticism, movie reviews, Movies, racism, women, writing | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Who Needs That Ther’ Book Lernin’?: Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, July 2018 Edition, Vol. 451

  Who Needs That Ther’ Book Lernin’?:  Classic Film Images Photo Quiz, July 2018 Edition, Vol. 451     Despite such contemporary wizards as Mark Zuckerberg asserting the notion that modern life requires little more wisdom than can be drawn … Continue reading

Posted in book reviews, books, Boston, children's books, History, Movies, Musicals, Mystery, short stories, women, writing | Tagged , | 3 Comments