Saturday, April 21, 2007

DVD Pick:--> "The Bad Seed" (1956)


"Look out! the sky is falling down!
Look out! the world is spinning round and round and round!
Look out! the sun is going black... black
Look out! its never, never, never coming back...Look out!"
Black Sabbath
NO SPOILERS:
This 1956 film directed by Mervyn LeRoy, has nothing to do with the supernatural or the occult as I was want to believe. Nor is it scary. Rather, it is an uncomfortable study of a young child who simply has no morals, scruples, or conscience. Hence, "The Bad Seed." AND!!!...It is pretty good stuff!

The story revolves around Rhoda (Patty McCormack), a manipulative, callous ten year old girl who has everyone believing that her poop don't stink.

That is, except the ornery and simpleminded gardener LeRoy (played perfectly by Henry Jones) who has the "little princess" figured out big time.

Different people seem to die mysterious deaths around her (including one victim from Wichita...props to my Wichita peeps). The injured party is usually a person who has something little Rhoda desires.

Viewers are left wondering throughout the film when this greedy "Bad Seed" will get her comeuppance...(in fact, we're depending on it!) and this is what holds our attention.

Some of the dialogue sounds stagey and rings false (especially early on) and would lose most viewers if not for the suspense created by the little girl who is annoyingly wonderful.
Leroy (Henry Jones) has little Rhoda...all figured out.

However, there are two supporting characters that really stand out. LeRoy, the gardner who steals every scene he's in, and Hortense Daigle (Eileen Heckart) gives a heartrending performance as a grief-stricken alcoholic mother. Although her screen time is brief, it is easy to see why she won a Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress.

Must See Moment:
Watch for the fantastic interactions between simple-minded LeRoy and the young girl...Absolutely NOT to to be missed.
And the last 15 minutes of the film are unexpected...so you are NOT to leave your seat.

Casey

Black Sabbath-->"Children Of The Sea" off Heaven and Hell (1980)
(Own This CD)

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