Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, October 23, 2014


A COLD WIND IN AUGUST (1961). Director: Alexander Singer.

Iris Hartford (Lola Albright) has been disappointed by the men in her life, so she decides to slap the make on a boy this time, the super's 17-year-old son, Vito (Scott Marlowe). The two fall in love, but Vito can't deal with Iris' profession. Right away the movie has a problem because Scott Marlowe was actually 29 at the time of filming, and looks considerably older, so the whole idea of a supposed twenty year age difference is completely lost; Albright was 36. Marlowe gives a good performance, but can't quite compensate for his miscasting. Albright is much more interesting in this than she was in her white bread role on Peter Gunn, but the greatest actress in the world would have trouble making the confused and confusing, underwritten Iris come alive. Joe De Santis scores as Vito's father, Mr. Pellegrino, and Herschel Bernardi, also from Peter Gunn, is excellent as a "friend" of Iris who is clearly in love with her. Perhaps the most notable performance is given by Clarke Gordon as Iris' desperate ex-husband, Harry. This script should probably never have been filmed, at least not with these leads. Singer also directed Love Has Many Faces with Lana Turner.

Verdict: Under-baked, with titillation that goes nowhere slowly. **.

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