Hardboiled Frank Sinatra: Tony Rome (1967) + Lady in Cement (1968)

September 28, 2016 | By

Nope. This moment NEVER HAPPENS.

Just posted is a review of two surprisingly fun Frank Sinatra flicks Twilight Time chose to double-bill on Blu – Tony Rome (1967) and Lady in Cement (1968), an okay sequel that never managed to spawn a third filmic escapade of Marvin H. Albert’s private eye. TT’s set is another example of the value-added double-bill collectors like because it packages a diptych in one set, and doesn’t force a kind of double-dipping.

Some series have standout cult favourites and dud sequels, whereas others mandate watching the entire run, either due to fan loyalty, or a perverse fascination in tracking a series’ gradual disintegration.


Gorgeous French poster, oui?

In any event, TT’s set boasts a solid commentary track and isolated score tracks, and fits quite nicely with their other Sinatra police thriller, The Detective (1968), which like the two aforementioned, were directed by Gordon Douglas.

Pity there’s no bio on Douglas, because he was a classic studio director who worked his way up within the studio system as a bit player, switched to comedic short films (including Our Gang films, and Laurel & Hardy’s Saps at Sea), after which he worked his way through B programmers (Dick Tracy, The Falcon) and seemingly whatever the studio tossed his way until little by little he seemed to move into the minor A range.


Striking iconography, but this moment NEVER HAPPENS.

His best-known work is arguably the sci-fi classic Them! (1954) plus four Sinatra flicks, yet he also seemed to be the guy who could deliver a reliable sequel for a pre-existing franchise, like Robin and the 7 Hoods (1964), They Call Me MISTER Tibbs! (1970), and Slaughter’s Big Rip-Off (1973), plus remakes of Stagecoach (1966), and Nevada Smith (1975) for TV. A personal favourite is the James Cagney meanie Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye (1950), which was taut, grim, and a great deal of fun.

Coming next is the CanCon documentary Being Canadian (2015), directed by hit TV series scribe Robert Cohen (The Ben Stiller Show, MADtv, The Big Bang Theory), released on DVD by Passion River… and being a CanCon production about things Canadian… available only as an import!



Mark R. Hasan, Editor

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