Movie Diary 1/10/2018

The Final Year (Greg Barker, 2017). Inside the Obama foreign-policy team during the last year of the president’s second term, with the focus on John Kerry, Samantha Power, and Ben Rhodes. The ostensible subject is interesting, but it’s gradually overshadowed by the ticking sound of a bomb that we all know will detonate in November 2016. (full review 1/17)

The Frightened City (John Lemont, 1961). British crime picture about a mob accountant (suave Herbert Lom) bringing together London mafia chiefs for shared criminal enterprise. Their enforcer is Sean Connery, still with a lean and hungry look in a pretty big role a year before Dr. No. Yvonne Romain (Curse of the Werewolf) is the woman who distracts Connery from his boring nice girlfriend; John Gregson plays the cop on the case. Well-executed gangster thing.

Man in the Attic (Hugo Fregonese, 1953). A re-working of The Lodger, with Jack Palance as the new arrival in the boarding house. Serviceable at best, but worth seeing for Palance’s tortured performance; he spends most of the film with his head about to explode.