As the weather this weekend was snowy and cold cold cold I rented some movies from the library. The two I watched this weekend were Heaven Can Wait and Hang ’em High.
Heaven Can Wait (1943)
Directed by Ernst Lubitsch. A dead man visits the devil to ask to go to hell because he doesn’t think he will make it into heaven. He recounts his life to his “excellency”. The movie is based on a play called Birthday. The main character goes by Henry van Cleve. The movie takes place over 70 years (starting around 1887) in New York City with a side trip to Kansas. It was a pretty good movie. The change in dress and decoration over the time periods was interesting. The van Cleve home is at 921 5th Avenue in New York. I did a Google Map search and I don’t think it exists.
Henry had a crazy life and a strange family. He was a playboy and a smooth talker. To me he was neither likable or unlikable. I guess he was a bit complex. The devil looked very modern and urban. Overall the movie was okay. I don’t think it is anything great but I wouldn’t say avoid it either.
Hang ’em High (1968)
Clint Eastwood plays a man accused of vigilantes of murder and cattle rustling. He is hung but makes it out alive. He then becomes a lawman with an aim to get justice from those who wronged him. The movie takes place in Oklahoma when it was still a territory in 1889. Capital punishment seems to be a central theme for this movie. The judge (the only one in the whole territory) sees being tough on crime as a way to get statehood for the territory. Our hero disagrees with the methods and decisions of the judge at several points in the movie.
The characters were a bit predictable. One of the bad guys had an eye-patch. The love interest has a grudge. Clint Eastwood plays the strong, silent type that always gets the job done. The ending was – unsatisfactory. I have been on a western kick but there are better ones out there. I wouldn’t go very far out of the way to watch this one.
Have you seen any good movies lately?