TV Review – THE VIRGINIAN: BELOVED OUTLAW (1966)

Sara Lane in “Beloved Outlaw” (5:11) – The Virginian WeblogTHE VIRGINIAN: BELOVED OUTLAW (1966, USA) ***
Western
net. National Broadcasting Company (NBC); pr co. Universal Television; d. William Witney; w. True Boardman; exec pr. Frank Price; pr. Winston Miller; ph. Enzo A. Martinelli (Technicolor. 35mm. Spherical. 1.33:1); m. Jack Hayes, Leo Shuken; m sup. Stanley Wilson; th. Percy Faith; ed. Edward A. Biery; ad. George Patrick; set d. Claire P. Brown, John McCarthy Jr.; cos. Vincent Dee; m/up. Bud Westmore, Larry Germain; sd. Bill Ford (Mono); tr. 23 November 1966; r/t. 75m.

cast: James Drury (The Virginian), Charles Bickford (John Grainger), Doug McClure (Trampas), Don Quine (Stacey Grainger), Sara Lane (Elizabeth Grainger), John Bryant (Dr. Spaulding), James McCallion (Hostler), Bing Russell (Gabe Sloan), John Archer (Paul Nelson), James Beck (Peters), Don Wilbanks (Jenkins), John Harmon (Auctioneer).

(s. 5 ep. 11) A wild white stallion draws the attention of Elizabeth (Lane) who convinces her grandfather (Bickford) to buy it. Against his wishes, she tames and breaks the stallion when Trampas (McClure) is unable to. Her and the stallion become inseparable, but a problem occurs. The standard story of girl falls in love with wild horse and only she can tame him. All the stock story development is used in this tale, but it is done without becoming cloyingly sentimental and Lane delivers a genuinely charming and engaging performance.

TV Review – THE VIRGINIAN: DEAD-EYE DICK (1966)

The Virginian Episode Review~Deadeye Dick |THE VIRGINIAN: DEAD-EYE DICK (1966, USA) **½
Western
net. National Broadcasting Company (NBC); pr co. Universal Television; d. Ida Lupino; w. Joseph Hoffman; exec pr. Frank Price; pr. Winston Miller; ph. Walter Strenge (Technicolor. 35mm. Spherical. 1.33:1); m. Sidney Fine; m sup. Stanley Wilson; th. Percy Faith; ed. Robert F. Shugrue; ad. George Patrick; set d. Claire P. Brown, John McCarthy Jr.; cos. Vincent Dee; m/up. Bud Westmore, Larry Germain; sd. Frank H. Wilkinson (Mono); tr. 9 November 1966; r/t. 77m.

cast: James Drury (The Virginian), Charles Bickford (John Grainger), Doug McClure (Trampas), Don Quine (Stacey Grainger), Sara Lane (Elizabeth Grainger), Alice Rawlings (Marjorie Hammond), David Macklin (Bob Foley), William Schallert (Harry Foley), Patricia Donahue (Mrs. Livvy Underhill), June Vincent (Mrs. Lucille Hammond), Ross Elliott (Sheriff Mark Abbott), Simon Scott (District Attorney), William Phipps (Hank), Dennis McCarthy (3rd Townsman), Chuck Courtney (Blake), Ollie O’Toole (Bank Teller), Walter Woolf King (Judge Winters), Mike Ragan (Burt (uncredited)), Frank Sully (Danny the Bartender (uncredited)).

(s. 5 ep. 9) A woman (Vincent) visits her sister in Medicine Bow bringing her teenage daughter (Rawlings) who is enamoured with a Dead Eye Dick western novel. She develops a crush on The Virginian (Drury) after he settles her horse aggravating a teenage boy she meets who likes her. A lightweight and totally predictable episode, the kind that made a diversion from the more serious material around it. The big positive is Rawlings, who captures the girl’s naive charm well. Everything else in this tale is moderate and instantly forgettable.

TV Review – THE VIRGINIAN: TRAIL TO ASHLEY MOUNTAIN (1966)

The Virginian 05x08 Trail to Ashley Mountain part 1/2 - video dailymotionTHE VIRGINIAN: TRAIL TO ASHLEY MOUNTAIN (1966, USA) ***
Western
net. National Broadcasting Company (NBC); pr co. Universal Television; d. Abner Biberman; w. Sy Salkowitz; exec pr. Frank Price; pr. Cy Chermak; ph. Enzo A. Martinelli (Technicolor. 35mm. Spherical. 1.33:1); m sup. Stanley Wilson; th. Percy Faith; ed. Michael R. McAdam; ad. George Patrick; set d. John McCarthy Jr., James M. Walters Sr.; cos. Vincent Dee; m/up. Bud Westmore, Larry Germain; sd. Frank H. Wilkinson (Mono); tr. 2 November 1966; r/t. 76m.

cast: James Drury (The Virginian), Doug McClure (Trampas), Martin Milner (Case), George Kennedy (Huck Harkness), Gene Evans (Blanchard), Steve Carlson (Willy Parker), Hugh Marlowe (Ed Wells), Judi Meredith (Ruth), Raymond St. Jacques (Allerton), Paul Comi (Jack Harlan), Ross Elliott (Sheriff Abbott), Monica Lewis (Connie Wells), Jackie Coogan (Bodey).

(s. 5 ep. 8) Trampas (McClure) leads a two-man posse to capture the brother-in-law (Carlson) of a friend (Marlowe) in jail who is innocent when the Sheriff (Elliott) is injured. They encounter others who hinder their progress and an unhappy couple. But the big problem is Trampas’ partner. The story’s basic premise is of an outlaw on the run from a posse, where the posse, led by McClure, is made up of individuals each with their own reason for being involved. The tension plays off between these individuals through until the inevitable shootout finale. The story is elevated by the strong guest cast and good direction from Biberman.

TV Review – THE VIRGINIAN: THE CHALLENGE (1966)

THE VIRGINIAN: THE CHALLENGE (1966, USA) ***
Western
net. National Broadcasting Company (NBC); pr co. Universal Television; d. Don McDougall; w. Joy Dexter, Harry Kronman (based on a story by Joy Dexter); exec pr. Frank Price; pr. Joel Rogosin; ph. Enzo A. Martinelli (Technicolor. 35mm. Spherical. 1.33:1); m. Jack Hayes, Leo Shuken; m sup. Stanley Wilson; th. Percy Faith; ed. Michael R. McAdam; ad. George Patrick; set d. John McCarthy Jr., James M. Walters Sr.; cos. Vincent Dee; m/up. Bud Westmore, Larry Germain; sd. Earl Crain Jr. (Mono); tr. 19 October 1966; r/t. 75m.

cast: James Drury (The Virginian), Charles Bickford (John Grainger), Doug McClure (Trampas), Don Quine (Stacey Grainger), Sara Lane (Elizabeth Grainger), Dan Duryea (Ben Crayton), Don Galloway (Jim Tyson), Michael Burns (Bobby Crayton), Barbara Anderson (Sarah Crayton), Ed Peck (Sheriff Milt Hayle), Bing Russell (Sam Fuller), Hal Bokar (Hank Logan), Grant Woods (Walt Sturgess), Clay Tanner (Station Agent), Byron Keith (Dr. Manning), Clyde Howdy (Marshal Coons), Lew Brown (Deputy Hart Ellis).

(s. 5 ep. 6) After a stagecoach holdup and accident, Trampas (McClure) stumbles into a farm with a concussion and amnesia. The farmer (Duryea) and his two kids (Anderson and Burns) tend to Trampas but the white-handled gun he is carrying puts him into danger from the law and the outlaws. Loss of memory and implication in some crime is a well-worn plot device, so there are not many surprises in this familiar tale. The story is tight and well-acted by a strong cast, with McClure getting to explore his range a bit more. It is competently made and the story retains interest throughout. Galloway and Anderson (here making her TV debut) would go on to work together on the popular crime drama Ironside (1967-75).

TV Review – THE VIRGINIAN: AN ECHO OF THUNDER (1966)

An Echo of Thunder (1966) in 2020 | Doug mcclure, The virginian ...THE VIRGINIAN: AN ECHO OF THUNDER (1966, USA) ***½
Western
net. National Broadcasting Company (NBC); pr co. Universal Television; d. Abner Biberman; w. Don Ingalls; exec pr. Frank Price; pr. Cy Chermak; ph. Enzo A. Martinelli (Technicolor. 35mm. Spherical. 1.33:1); m. Franz Waxman; m sup. Stanley Wilson; th. Percy Faith; ed. John Elias; ad. George Patrick; set d. John McCarthy Jr., James M. Walters Sr.; cos. Vincent Dee; m/up. Bud Westmore, Larry Germain; sd. Earl Crain Jr. (Mono); tr. 5 October 1966; r/t. 75m.

cast: James Drury (The Virginian), Doug McClure (Trampas), Linden Chiles (Ben Fancher), John Anderson (Deputy Sheriff Sam Morrell), Jason Evers (Sheriff Harry Lundy), Indus Arthur (Margaret Lundy), Barbara Werle (Delores), Brendon Boone (Griff), Les Tremayne (Horatio Troast), Mark Miranda (Chico), Shug Fisher (Telegrapher), William Keene (Minister), Jon Drury (Hank), Harold ‘Hal’ Frizzell (Cowboy (uncredited)).

(s. 5 ep. 4) After helping deliver a herd of horses, Trampas decides to take a few days to visit an old friend nearby but he arrives in time for his friend’s funeral. He is bothered by the circumstances of his death, so he decides to investigate. Another strong episode sees McClure give one of his best performances in the series as he tries to uncover the events leading to the death of his old friend. Whilst the guest cast performances are a little mixed, Anderson stands out as a gunfighter turned deputy who tangles with McClure. The story builds nicely to its final shootout, which is seemingly resolved all too quickly given the swift import of five gunmen to support Anderson. The tension, however, is heightened by Waxman’s music score, a luxury for a TV series using such a distinguished composer. Jon Drury is the brother of series star James Drury.

TV Review: THE VIRGINIAN: THE CAPTIVE (1966)

The Captive (1966)THE VIRGINIAN: THE CAPTIVE (1966, USA) ***½
Western
net. National Broadcasting Company (NBC); pr co. Universal Television; d. Don Weis; w. Peter Packer; exec pr. Frank Price; pr. Winston Miller; ph. Enzo A. Martinelli (Technicolor. 35mm. Spherical. 1.33:1); m. Sidney Fine; m sup. Stanley Wilson; th. Percy Faith; ed. John Elias; ad. George Patrick; set d. Claire P. Brown, John McCarthy Jr.; cos. Vincent Dee; m/up. Bud Westmore, Larry Germain; sd. Earl Crain Jr. (Mono); tr. 28 September 1966; r/t. 75m.

cast: James Drury (The Virginian), Charles Bickford (John Grainger), Doug McClure (Trampas), Don Quine (Stacey Grainger), Sara Lane (Elizabeth Grainger), Susan Strasberg (Liliota / Katherine Ann Emory), Virginia Vincent (Louise Emory), Don Hanmer (Roger Emory), Than Wyenn (Grey Horse), Ross Elliott (Sheriff Mark Abbott), Michael Forest (Cavalry Lieutenant), Gus Trikonis (Running Elk), Tina Menard (Elk Woman), Alex Sharp (Ranch Hand).

(s. 5 ep. 3) A white girl is caught with her adoptive Arapaho parents stealing Shiloh cattle. She stays at Shiloh while the authorities try to find her white parents. She wants to return to the Arapaho but is forced to learn to live in the white world. The diminutive Strasberg gives a good performance as the adoptive Indian with emotional conflicts splitting her bond with her adoptive Arapho guardians and her natural parents. This is a good episode for Lane whose frustration in her attempts to bond with Strasberg are sensitively played. Good direction from Weis keeps the story the right side of sentimental and the finale is genuinely touching.

TV Review: THE VIRGINIAN: LEGACY OF HATE (1966)

Legacy of Hate (1966)THE VIRGINIAN: LEGACY OF HATE (1966, USA) ***½
Western
net. National Broadcasting Company (NBC); pr co. Universal Television; d. Don McDougall; w. Frank Chase; exec pr. Frank Price; pr. Winston Miller; ph. Ray Rennahan (Technicolor. 35mm. Spherical. 1.33:1); m. Jack Hayes, Leo Shuken; m sup. Stanley Wilson; th. Percy Faith; ed. Robert F. Shugrue; ad. George Patrick; set d. John McCarthy Jr., James M. Walters Sr.; cos. Vincent Dee; m/up. Bud Westmore, Larry Germain; sd. Earl Crain Jr. (Mono); tr. 14 September 1966; r/t. 75m.

cast: James Drury (The Virginian), Charles Bickford (John Grainger), Doug McClure (Trampas), Don Quine (Stacey Grainger), Sara Lane (Elizabeth Grainger), Jo Van Fleet (Lee Calder), Jeremy Slate (Jim Dawson), L.Q. Jones (Belden), Ross Elliott (Sheriff Mark Abbott), Tyler McVey (Gillman), Dennis McCarthy (Cooper), Clyde Howdy (Nash), Ed Prentiss (Parker), Elizabeth Harrower (Mrs. Grant), Troy Melton (Ed), Bob Hoy (Pete), Robert Board (Townsman (uncredited)), Jimmie Booth (Lee’s Carriage Driver (uncredited)), George DeNormand (Townsman (uncredited)).

(s. 5 ep. 1) The new owner of Shiloh quickly finds his hot-headed grandson accused of cattle rustling. He learns his neighbour is the widow of a friend who died with him. The sullied family name reduces their finance options putting Shiloh in jeopardy. Season five opens with a strong episode built around Bickford and Van Fleet. Lane and Quine are also introduced as Bickford’s devoted granddaughter and volatile grandson and acquit themselves well. The drama is resolved a little too neatly in its final act, but still another example of how the series retained a high quality producing up to 30 episodes a year at 75m each.

Film Review – WARLORDS OF ATLANTIS (1978)

Related imageWARLORDS OF ATLANTIS (UK, 1978) **½
      Distributor: EMI Films (UK), Columbia Pictures (USA); Production Company: EMI Films / British Lion; Release Date: 5 May 1978; Filming Dates: 5 September 1977 – 13 January 1978; Running Time: 96m; Colour: Technicolor; Sound Mix: Mono; Film Format: 35mm; Film Process: Spherical; Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1; BBFC Cert: PG.
      Director: Kevin Connor; Writer: Brian Hayles; Executive Producer: Jim Brown (uncredited); Producer: John Dark, Kevin Connor; Director of Photography: Alan Hume; Music Composer: Michael Vickers; Film Editor: Bill Blunden; Casting Director: Allan Foenander; Production Designer: Elliot Scott; Art Director: Jack Maxsted; Costumes: Lorna Hillyard, Monica Howe; Make-up: Robin Grantham; Sound: Jim Atkinson; Special Effects: John Richardson; Visual Effects: Charles Staffell.
      Cast: Doug McClure (Greg Collinson), Peter Gilmore (Charles Aitken), Shane Rimmer (Captain Daniels), Lea Brodie (Delphine), Michael Gothard (Atmir), Hal Galili (Grogan), John Ratzenberger (Fenn), Derry Power (Jacko), Donald Bisset (Professor Aitken), Ashley Knight (Sandy), Robert Brown (Briggs), Cyd Charisse (Atsil), Daniel Massey (Atraxon).
      Synopsis: Searching for the lost world of Atlantis, a professor and his associates are betrayed by the crew of their expedition’s ship, attracted by the fabulous treasures of Atlantis.
      Comment: The last and weakest of McClure’s four fantasy adventure movies with director Connor. The story and plot are derivative, but at least Connor keeps the action coming thick and fast and the set-pieces are well shot and edited. Monster effects are variable, with the best being the giant octopus. The inhabitants of Atlantis are stoic and bland with Gothard and Charisse giving one-note performances. However, McClure and Gilmore work well together as the heroes of the piece, echoing the former’s work with Peter Cushing on AT THE EARTH’S CORE (1976). Aka: WARLORDS OF THE DEEP.

Film Review – AT THE EARTH’S CORE (1976)

Peter Cushing, Doug McClure, and Caroline Munro in At the Earth's Core (1976)AT THE EARTH’S CORE (UK/USA, 1976) ***
      Distributor: British Lion Film Corporation (UK) / American International Pictures (A.I.P.) (USA); Production Company: Amicus Productions; Release Date: July 1976 (USA), 22 August 1976 (UK); Filming Dates: 26 January 1976 – mid April 1976; Running Time: 90m; Colour: Technicolor; Sound Mix: Mono; Film Format: 35mm; Film Process: Spherical; Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1; BBFC Cert: PG.
      Director: Kevin Connor; Writer: Milton Subotsky (based on the novel by Edgar Rice Burroughs); Executive Producer: Harry N. Blum; Producer: John Dark, Max Rosenberg, Milton Subotsky; Director of Photography: Alan Hume; Music Composer: Michael Vickers; Film Editor: John Ireland, Barry Peters; Production Designer: Maurice Carter; Art Director: Bert Davey; Costumes: Rosemary Burrows; Make-up: Robin Grantham, Neville Smallwood; Sound: Jim Atkinson, George Stephenson; Special Effects: Ian Wingrove; Visual Effects: Charles Staffell.
      Cast: Doug McClure (David Innes), Peter Cushing (Dr. Abner Perry), Caroline Munro (Dia), Cy Grant (Ra), Godfrey James (Ghak), Sean Lynch (Hoojah), Keith Barron (Dowsett), Helen Gill (Maisie), Anthony Verner (Gadsby), Robert Gillespie (Photographer), Michael Crane (Jubal), Bobby Parr (Sagoth Chief), Andee Cromarty (Girl Slave).
      Synopsis: A Victorian era scientist and his assistant take a test run in their Iron Mole drilling machine and end up in a strange underground labyrinth ruled by a species of giant telepathic bird and full of prehistoric monsters and cavemen.
      Comment: Scatty, juvenile and low-budget fantasy adventure gets by on its camp approach to the material with Cushing excelling in one of his lightly comic and eccentric scientist roles. McClure makes for an effective and likeable hero and Munro is stunning as one of the scantily clad natives. The monsters betray the lack of funds, but the action is well-edited to disguise some of the limitations this presents the production. The script is tight but lacks any depth or set-up. Vickers provides an eerie electronic score and Connor directs with a great sense of fun which he balances with the eerie atmosphere created by the imaginative production design and Hume’s photography.
      Notes: Last film produced by Amicus, Hammer’s chief rival during the 1960s and ’70s.

Film Review – THE PEOPLE THAT TIME FORGOT (1977)

Image result for THE PEOPLE THAT TIME FORGOT 1977THE PEOPLE THAT TIME FORGOT (UK/USA, 1977) **½
      Distributor: Brent Walker PLC (UK), American International Pictures (AIP) (USA); Production Company: American International Pictures (AIP) / Amicus Productions; Release Date: 22 June 1977 (USA), 27 August 1977 (UK); Filming Dates: began 24 Jan 1977; Running Time: 91m; Colour: Technicolor; Sound Mix: Mono; Film Format: 35mm; Film Process: Spherical; Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1; BBFC Cert: U.
      Director: Kevin Connor; Writer: Patrick Tilley (based on the novel by Edgar Rice Burroughs); Executive Producer: Samuel Z. Arkoff; Producer: John Dark; Director of Photography: Alan Hume; Music Composer: John Scott; Film Editor: John Ireland, Barry Peters; Production Designer: Maurice Carter; Art Director: Bert Davey, Fernando González; Set Decorator: Simon Wakefield; Costumes: ; Make-up: Robin Grantham; Sound: George Stephenson; Special Effects: Ian Wingrove, John Richardson; Visual Effects: Charles Staffell.
      Cast: Patrick Wayne (Ben McBride), Doug McClure (Bowen Tyler), Sarah Douglas (Charly), Dana Gillespie (Ajor), Thorley Walters (Norfolk), Shane Rimmer (Hogan), Tony Britton (Captain Lawton), John Hallam (Chung-Sha), David Prowse (Executioner), Milton Reid (Sabbala), Kiran Shah (Bolum), Richard LeParmentier (Lt. Whitby), Jimmy Ray (Lt. Graham), Tony McHale (Telegraphist).
      Synopsis: Major Ben McBride organises a mission to the Antarctic wastes to search for his friend (McClure) who has been missing in the region for several years.
      Comment: Okay sequel to THE LAND THAT TIME FORGOT (1974) lacks the creative energy of the original but remains a mildly entertaining diversion. Wayne is rather wooden in the lead role, but Douglas and Walters compensate. McClure reprises his role from the first film in a guest slot. Effects are limited due to the lack of budget, but Connor gets as much excitement as he can from a rather flat script and stages some good action sequences and monster set-pieces.