A Movie A Day #310: Hanover Street (1979, directed by Peter Hyams)

The time is World War II and, for the British, the American army is “overpaid, oversexed, and over here.”  David Halloran (Harrison Ford) is a pilot who has been stationed in England.  With no loved ones to worry about, David has no fear of flying over occupied France and dropping bombs on the Nazis below.  But then David meets an English nurse, Margaret (Lesley-Anne Down).  As David falls in love, he loses his enthusiasm for the war because he now has “a reason to live.”  The only problem is that Margaret is already married to Paul (Christopher Plummer), an officer in British Intelligence.  When David accepts an assignment to fly a British agent into France, he is shocked when the agent turns out to be Paul.  When David’s plane crashes, he and Paul have to work together to complete Paul’s mission and escape back to Britain.

Hanover Street is a very old-fashioned and very slow wartime romance.  If not for a love scene between Lesley-Ann Down and Harrison Ford, this movie could probably pass for a 1940s film, just not a good one.  The most interesting thing about Hanover Street is how awkward Harrison Ford seems to be.  Hanover Street was made shortly after Star Wars made him a sudden star and Ford still doesn’t seem like he’s comfortable with the whole idea of being a movie star.  Fortunately, for Ford, he still had Indiana Jones in his future.

The Return of 007: Sean Connery in DIAMONDS ARE FORVER (United Artists 1971)

cracked rear viewer

007 fans all over the world cheered when Sean Connery returned to the role that made him famous in DIAMONDS ARE FOREVER, the 6th James Bond screen outing. Connery left the series in 1967 (YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE), and was replaced by George Lazenby for 1969’s ON HER MAJESTY’S SECRET SERVICE. Lazenby was actually pretty good, if a bit boring, but he was one-and-done, choosing not to be typecast as cinema’s most famous spy (how’d that work out, George?). Producers Albert Broccoli and Harry Saltzman offered Connery an unprecedented $1.25 million dollars to come back, which the smart Scotsman snapped up in a heartbeat… who wouldn’t? Well, except for George Lazenby.

The opening sequence has Bond searching the globe to fins Ernst Stavro Blofeld, SPECTRE’s megalomanical leader who ordered the death of Bond’s wife in the previous movie. 007 hunts down his arch nemesis and ends his villainous career in…

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Music Video of the Day: Heroes by David Bowie (1977, dir by Stanley Dorfman)

Hi, everyone!  Lisa here, with today’s song of the day.

Why did I pick Heroes for today’s music video of the day, beyond the fact that it’s a really good song and a simple video that doesn’t require too much interpretation?  Some of it is because today is the international Day of the Imprisoned Writer and Heroes is a song about two lovers living in the shadow of oppression.  Technically, Heroes tells the story of two lovers in Berlin who meet everyday under the shadow of the Berlin Wall.  According to Songfacts:

Bowie, who was living in Berlin at the time, was inspired by an affair between his producer Tony Visconti and backup singer Antonia Maass, who would kiss “by the wall” in front of Bowie as he looked out of the Hansa Studio window.

The other reason that I picked Heroes is because I recently rewatched one of my favorite movies, Christiane F.  Both Bowie and this song play very important roles in that harrowing film.

As for the video, it’s simple but that’s why it works.  The starkness of the video matches nicely with raw emotion of Bowie’s voice.