Sunday, July 02, 2017

Movie review - "Lady in Cement" (1968) **1/2

An unexpected surprise - I wasn't thinking this Frank Sinatra PI movie would be much, but it was a tight, fast paced, entertaining flick. I'm not saying would've liked to have spent any money on it, and recognise it's flaws but it was fun - at least for the first half.

Frank is well cast as a tough weary private eye, Tony Rome - this was the second in a series. He's fast with a quip and seems to be having a good time has he investigates the death of a topless blonde he finds at the bottom of the ocean while scuba diving for treasure.

There's a subplot where Sinatra is hired by a big goon, Dan Blocker (very good) to look for a girl, which reminded me of Farewell My Lovely - indeed, the whole film feels as though it was made by people who watched a lot of Chandler and Hammett adaptations.

Raquel Welch has a supporting role, looking splendid in a bikini. She's still awkward but has some nice by-play with Sinatra. People like Richard Conte pop up in the support cast.

There's some unpleasant late 60s masculinity things - not one but two villainous gays, the hilarity of a cop going undercover in drag, lecherous scenes perving on not one not two but three bimbos (the topless dead blonde, Raquel, and another bimbo). The story becomes less interesting as it goes on - after a strong beginning I enjoyed it less.

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