Archive for September, 2010

The Mask of Fu Manchu” (1932)


Capsule Description: The malevolent Mandarin, Fu Manchu, attempts to rally the heathen Asiatic hordes under his banner by way of the legendary Sword and Mask of Genghis Kahn, proclaiming himself the reincarnation of the legendary conqueror. But his opponent, Sir Nayland Smith, is there to oppose his scheme.

⇒ Continue reading “The Mask of Fu Manchu” (1932)”

Hypnotique” by Max Factor

For the women born to enchant men. Max Factor’s Hypnotique … the new fragrance that’s captured the very essence of woman’s power over men. Coolly and with great elegance Hypnotique attracts … holds … persuades … and then! Anything can happen! (Advertising copy from the first magazine ad.)

Description: All cosmetics, including fragrances, are designed in part to attract and focus attention on the wearer. Some fragrances are just a little more blatant about it. Fragrances with names like “Spellbound”, “Hypnose”, “Mesmerize” or “Hypnotic Poison”  blatantly suggest the power of commanding and controlling men (although Avon’s “Mesmerize”, which was originally a woman’s fragrance, is now being more directly marketed toward men, strangely enough.) Even fragrances not so named are frequently advertised using hypnotic terminology and imagery.

But one of the earliest and certainly one of the most blatant of the hypnotic cosmetics was “Hypnotique” by Max Factor. Released in the late 1950’s, the hypnotic imagery was very noticeable in the magazine ads:

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How I Am Making My Selections”

Currently, I have no set order in which I am writing and publishing my blog posts here. What has been happening is that I will start pulling items of interest from the collection, examining them and then start writing on a particular item; other times I will start articles as I think of them. At present, I have about 15 different posts in some degree or another of completion. Then I will select one at some time before the scheduled publication date and do the research and writing to complete it. 

But sometimes things can come straight from left field. For Instance, I was in the middle of writing a post on another movie (taking the recommendation from the online poll) but I happened to think of the movie “Our Man Flint” and suddenly the first paragraph almost wrote itself in my head. Once I thought of that, I just had to finish it.

Outside events can also affect the selection. Right now, I am trying to get a copy of the novel “Thirteen Women” by Tiffany Thayer, the source for the Myrna Loy / Irene Dunn movie of the same name, through inter-library loan. If I am able to get that then I will be able to complete the post on the movie and maybe do a separate one on the book, too, depending on what all is in it. 

The same is true for a post on a non-fiction article I am researching: i am waiting to see if I can get a copy of a book the author of the article wrote to see if the article is included within, and to see if I can get any further biographical information about the author from the book, as there are elements of the article that trying to confirm. I originally wanted this post to be the second one I wrote but details of the research have pushed back the finish time. 

I am trying not to do all of the easy stuff first: part of the intent here was to get me to seriously read or review the unfamiliar stuff and I do need to start doing more of that. Besides, there will be times when I won’t have the time for the research or writing and will need something easy then, so I’m saving those up for the future. 

So, I would like to say what I will be posting next week, and I do have something scheduled but still in production, so that may change. That is likely to remain the status quo for the foreseeable future. 

Our Man Flint” (1966)

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History: The year is 1966. America is undergoing the throes of the British spy invasion. James Bond 007 leads the assault from the movie screen and book racks everywhere, supported ably on the small screen by “The Avengers”. America counters with its own home-grown television spy series. “The Man From U.N.C.L.E.” and “Get Smart”, but who shall challenge the forerunner, the invincible 007 himself, on the big screen?

In answer to America’s call comes Derek Flint, superspy, martial artist, ballet master, speaker to porpoises, millionaire, gourmand, man-about-town, ladies man, etc. In effect, everything James Bond is, and more. Armed with his trick lighter, which can perform 82 different functions (83 if you include lighting a cigar,) his quick wits and flashing grin, Flint saves the world from potential conquerors and nuclear disaster in “Our Man Flint” (1966) and “In Like Flint” (1967).

⇒ Continue reading “Our Man Flint” (1966)”

Hare Brained Hypnoist’ (1942)


Capsule Description: Bugs Bunny’s eternal nemesis, hunter Elmer Fudd, tries a new tactic this time: hypnosis. Using a book on hypnosis, he first hypnotizes a bear then tries to hypnotize Bugs, only to be hypnotized in return. Bugs turns the tables on him by commanding him to be a rabbit, but, when turning the tables, Bugs discovers that the tables can be turned in both directions.

⇒ Continue reading “Hare Brained Hypnoist’ (1942)”

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