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Sunken treasures await your re-discovery: Blog 2016 / Blog 2017
"I always keep my word, I'll send him right where he told me to go ...HELL!"
December 2018
This Blog is offering a colorful kaleidoscope of movie magic for cinema aficionados.
Crispy peanuts, thin-skinned baloons and thrilling sensations on celluloid.
See offbeat goodies and magic crumbs ...weekly!
The Reality behind the Fantasy! - The Story behind the Spectacle!
No inflated endlessly long stories, but short and crisp. 
'This is Helmet time!'
Photos beat content!
Welcome to the manege of madness! - Have a pleasant trip!

Richard Widmark relaxes on set of 'The Way West' during a break in filming.
'The Way West', wow, that sounds like a big epic!
Well, at the end it's only something for a small village theatre.
Director Andrew V. McLaglen has a hand for solid action Western movies ('Bandolero!') without higher ambitions.
His 'MacLintock' is pretty groovy.
This cowboy-chunk here is way too big for him!
The premium cast (Kirk Douglas, Robert Mitchum, Richard Widmark,...) evaporates without much effect.
This is not the way west, it's the way to hibernation. 
Big names - little show!
The blu-ray looks good with great vistas of the stunning locations.
Veteran cinematographer William H. Clothier knew that beautiful pictures are what people want to see in a big epic.
6/10
'The Way West'
Richard Widmark makes first contact with the rural population.
A tame young deer.
Lost in the sand of the desert.
Richard lays down in the sand for a little nap.
All brave Players on this clumsy way to the West have been on better travels.
Andrew V. McLaglen orchestrated a few good action adventures in other genres.
He shot 'The Wild Geese', 'The Sea Wolves' and the William Holden War movie 'The Devil's Brigade'.
Never really first-class stuff, but always good entertainment.

Producer Dino de Laurentiis and his Wife, Italian actress Silvana Mangano ('Dune'), came to New York 
to promote the new de Laurentiis epic 'The Bible ...in the Beginning'.
The movie premiered at New York City's Loew's State Theatre on September 28, 1966.
The photo shows the couple on stage for an interview with 'WNEW TV'.
Learn more about the epic and its stunning projection on the wide screen (D-150) here:
Noah's Ark - Biblical Ocean Liner.
The day after the premiere, Ava Gardner remarked, "It's the only time in my life I actually enjoyed 
working, making that picture."

Producer and Director Carl Foreman ('Guns of Navarone') actually wanted Sophia Loren for the role of the desperate, 
lonely Italian housewife waiting for her missing husband.
As la grande Loren was not available Foreman searched for an alternative.
At the end the beautiful actress Rosanna Schiaffino (1939–2009) signed-on for the part.
One did not attach much importance to Rosanna in promoting the movie. 
Her name was hardly mentioned on promotion stuff like posters, press material, ...
If Carl Foreman would have got Sophia Loren, he surely would have used her name much more 
intensively for promotion purposes.
Rosanna Schiaffino (born as Rosa Anna Schiaffino) in a movie scene - 'The Victors', 1963.
Rosanna fixing her hair and make-up, on set in Salerno (Campania, Italy) for 'The Victors'.
Rare colored Kodak 2.25 transparency.
The scenes together with the young Vince Edwards (Pvt. George Baker) are unusual and rarely seen in a war movie.
The whole Maria (Schiaffino)-George (Edwards) sequence is well played and pretty touching.
Both actors died relatively early and about the same age.
Vince died at the age of 67 and Rosanna at the age of 69.
The excellent war movie epic offers more unusual and moving scenes.
Very well made cinema. 
Stunning colored 'The Victors' promotion portrait shot of Rosanna Schiaffino.
Rosanna had a nice role in the underrated Super Technirama 70 epic 'La Fayatte'.
She played in a few adventure movies like 'The Long Ships', all mainly filmed in Europe.
She even got a fine role in a Euro-Western flick, 'The Man called Noon', directed by Peter Collinson ('The Italian Job').
Rare Kodak 2.25 transparency.

Your comments are always welcome!
Trust me, I know what I'm doing. Sometimes.

For the most part this B-Movie flick is a pure routine affair, with the acting and direction uniformly wooden.
Steve Johnson's XFX magic kitchen saved the whole cake with a great variety of exhilarating practical effects methods.
The new 'Patrick' monster is visually pretty exciting, a design full of enthusiasm and vibrancy.
Some first glimpses of the creature we get to see, when Patrick is doing his best to satisfy these hot Astronaut groupies.
Nancy La Scala and Raquel Gardner play the two sisters who wait in the Hotel suite for the famous Captain of the first 
successful manned mission to Mars.
Patrick, played by Justin Lazard, is full of energy ... equipped with a few extraterrestrial extras.
"My sister decided to join us. We share everything ...together".
Stupid mistake!
Patrick begins to transform.
Raquel Gardner in clinch with the XFX love puppet.
A full-size animatronic dummy of Justin Lazard (Patrick).
The erupting tentacles are controlled via mechanics hidden in the hollow puppet.
For this shot from Raquel's point of view Justin jumped into the bed. Time for the live actor.
The XFX crew put a special tentacle pack to the back of Justin, which really helped 
to sell the scenes and let them look pretty believable.
Live actor and dummy seem to merge together. Very good work!
Clever camera angles and good editing.
The XFX love puppet.
Dave Snyder, lead prosthetic designer, and sculptor Hiroshi Katagiri at work on the clay sculpt.
Minutes after having sex with Patrick one of the sisters is giving birth to an alien baby.
What we see here is a nude, full-body dummy attached to the head of actress Nancy La Scala.
The rapidly developing pregnancy was a nice effect designed with a bladder under a foam appliance. 
Nancy slipped into the nude body 'suit', created from her body mold, from behind with her arms and the head.
Steve Johnson designed the abdomen to open up like a flower for the gory birth of the alien baby, 
which is literally bursting out of the opening.
The movable legs and the animatronic baby were controlled by the crew from behind.
Same with the four petal sections which open in the belly.
The body prosthetic for Nancy La Scala and the alien baby were sculpted by Greg Smith (sculptural designer).
The understructure of the animatronic alien baby. 
XFX cosmetic designer Tom Killeen is giving the underskull some last finishing touches (airbrush).
The animatronic gadgetry of the baby was designed by XFX Veteran Eric Fiedler ('House', 'The Abyss') and Bob Newton.
Model/sculpt for the body prosthetic of Nancy La Scala, sculpted by Greg Smith.
Shortly before 'Species II' Greg (photo) worked for XFX on 'Sphere' as sculptural designer.
First test of the 'Nancy' appliance in the XFX lab.
You can see the 'flower-like abdomen'. 
They XFX crew created some pretty effective images.
After the much too hot adventure in the hotel suite, Patrick also kills his bride in a rush of extraterrestrial love.
Infected with Alien DNA.
His remaining human DNA wants to kill himself...
He blows his head off with a shotgun.
A splattering effect - Looks like a bursting balloon.
Practical effects will never die!
Preparation of a Patrick dummy for the shotgun scene.
The two tubes you see there are compressed air guns/mortars, ready to spit 'blood & brain' into the scene.
Digital Magic and XFX needed 3 months to finish the 'Patrick blows his brains out' scene.
A well-made motion control shot shows the full regeneration of Patricks head (XFX torso & CGI).
All a bit dated but still fine.
The only seconds long scene in the finished film cost about 120.000 US dollars!
A funny little movie.

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