Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Movies they show in TV in New England

Quite a few years ago, I lived on the east coast for several months and I saw movies on TV I hadn't seen in years.

I saw an old made-for-TV movie I watched when I was six or seven years old called The Screaming Woman. An old woman keeps hearing her neighbor calling for help----she's been buried alive by her estranged husband who thought he had killed her. But the old woman can't get anyone to believe her.

I remember sitting in the living room, my sister complaining constantly. In one scene, the old woman, Olivia de Havilland, tries to hire neighbor children to dig up the woman. She offers them a dollar. Cheap old bat. A woman's buried alive and all she'll pay is a dollar?

"A DOLLAR!!!" the children exclaim.

Even back then, when a pack of Twinkies cost 12 cents, kids weren't that impressed by a lousy dollar.

If she had paid them more, maybe they'd have helped her. As it was, they got spooked when they heard the buried woman begging for help and ran away. I'll bet they would have done it for twenty.

My sister also didn't like the freeze frame at the end over which the closing credits ran. It ended with a shot of Olivia de Havilland in a horse-drawn buggy, as I recall, looking very proud of herself. The movie was set in the present-day. At the time I thought the idea was that old people liked things like horses and buggies because they reminded them of the old days.

They showed that thing on a Boston TV station. I hadn't seen it since 1972, and I haven't seen it since.

Also saw a terrible movie called Bunny O'Hare, starring Bette Davis and Ernest Borgnine. Bette Davis is angry at the bank that foreclosed on her mortgage. Ernest Borgnine is an ex-convict plumber who takes her toilet to sell as the house is bulldozed. So. Bette and Ernest join forces. They disguise themselves as hippies and commit a series of bank robberies. Ernest Borgnine would release a bird into the bank. While employees tried to get it out, Bette Davis would rob the bank. And bank employees, seeing an elderly woman wearing a wig and hippie clothes, would naturally describe the robber to police as a young bohemian girl.

That movie made a big impression on me when I was eight. This year is its 40th anniversary. You'd think they'd do something to commemorate it.

I later read that they had to re-dub Bette Davis' last line. She insisted on saying "Fuck you" which would have gotten it an R rating. They had to redub it as "screw you" to get a PG rating. Thank God they did or I never would have seen it.

Interesting thing was how well I remembered the movies when I watched them again. I hadn't seen them since I was second grader. It could be that, watching them at such a young age, my memory wasn't distorted by additional knowledge.

But anyway. I don't know why these things were on TV there but not here. Do they show different stuff east of the Mississippi? Are we, on the west coast, that much smarter than the easterners?

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