Thursday, June 9, 2022

Thursday Movie Picks-Fantasy


This is a toughie.....Not! I love this genre and could picks a ton of films in one year alone. Wandering through the Shelves picked a good one and one that can be used every year and never choose the same film twice. I tried to do a theme within a theme so here we go...


I love this original film that stars Robert Montgomery as a sports guy, who plays the trombone, who gets into an accident but wasn't supposed to die. The dumbnut angel took his soul too soon and now it is up to  the head angel, played by a fav of mine, Claude Rains, to try to make things right. He decides to place Robert's soul into the body of a very wealthy man who was murdered. He is placed into that body but must deal with his nasty wife and her lover, who offed him. He contacts his old coach and falls in love with a gal not happy with his business practices. It's funny, sad and poignant. Warren Beatty made a really good remake called "Heaven Can Wait". I would skip the Chris Rock remake. 


I remember this film as "Outward Bound"  which was the original title of the film made in 1930 with Leslie Howard( I still need to see that version). Paul Henreid plays a man who thinks he is holding back his wife during the war, in Britain. While she is out, he puts the gas on to commit suicide. His wife is at the terminal to get a permit to board the ship, she is trying to find a way out. There we meet a bunch of people who all are waiting to get into a cab to bring them to the boat. The wife leaves, we see the people get into the cab and promptly get hit by a bomb. The wife returns and is so upset that her husband wants to take this route since she wants to be with him. They decide to be together. Suddenly we see the couple on the boat wondering how they got there. The people from that cab are there too and the young couple realize they are dead. They are the only ones who know except for the one steward played by Edmund Gwenn. I love this movie and finally got it on DVD last year. You have the array of people you get to know...a married couple, the man is nice but his wife..ick! The angry young man with a chip, the size of Trump's ego, on his shoulder. A woman who believes men are jerks, a kindly old lady and so on. I really think it's a unique movie even if you know the typical characters. I can watch it over and over.


This is truly known as " A Matter of Life and Death" but, when I first saw it, it was titled Stairway... This stars David Niven as the pilot of a doomed war plane who makes sure his men get out ok but he has no parachute so he knows he is doomed. He ends up talking to a radio operator, played by Kim Hunter, happy knowing he spoke to her before he dies. Here lies the rub, he ends up washed ashore with not even a scratch! Yup, a dumb angel forgot to take his soul but they only realize after David  meets the girl on the other end of the phone and they fall in love. Now David must fight for his right to live to he can love the woman he met. Another great movie with some neat effects like that Stairway. It's a film by Powell and Pressburger who are known for their beautiful looking films and unique story telling. I think it's a gem.

Which fantasy films are your favourites?


  1. Hi Birgit....hope you are well....I have only seen the David Niven Film from this selection but loved it....been doing a lot of binge watching on Amazon lately so many films to catch up on....take care xxxx

    1. It's such a good movie. I have not had time to do my scrapbook or my cards and miss it

  2. Hi, Birgit!

    I haven't seen any of these fantasy films but, turning to the first one, Here Comes Mr. Jordan, I did see the Warren Beatty remake Heaven Can Wait. WHAT? You recommend that we skip Chris Rock's 2001 remake Down to Earth? Isn't that a slap in the face, BB? I read that there were three other remakes of Here Comes Mr. Jordan: Ice Angel (2000) aka On Thin Ice: Going For The Gold starring Olympic figure skating champion Tara Lipinski, the Punjabi movie Mar Gaye Oye Loko (2018) and, last but Shirley not least, the porn film Debbie Does Dallas ... Again (2007).

    I'm quite sure I'd enjoy the saga of restless souls at sea Between Two Worlds. Movies with plots unfolding on "trains and boats and planes" have always been of interest, and the cast does look top notch.

    How about that 4K restoration on Stairway to Heaven? I like David Niven and am 100% certain this clever film would appeal to me. I want to see all three of the movies you reviewed today!

    The fantasy film that comes to my mind is the 1964 comedy Goodbye Charlie starring Tony Curtis, Debbie Reynolds and Pat Boone. Charlie, a philandering H-wood writer, is shot to death when caught fooling around with another man's wife, played by the luscious Laura Devon, one of my favorite actresses. (Charlie died with a big smile on his face.) Lo and behold, Charlie's spirit inhabits Debbie Reynolds' body and, from that moment on, it's Freaky Friday every day of the week. I saw the above two films, plus the 1991 movie Switch starring Ellen Barkin and Jimmy Smits, another movie inspired by George Axelrod's 1959 play Goodbye, Charlie.

    Please give my buddy Harley a good scratchin' and enjoy the rest of your week, dear friend BB!

    1. I hope you get to see these films because they are so good. I did enjoy the Warren Beatty remake.
      I have not seen the film with Tony Curtis and now i want to. Curtis was a notorious philanderer so he is not breaking from his own character.

  3. You did well with your theme within the theme.
    Was it literally fantasy as the theme? Because Lord of the Rings came to mind immediately.

    1. Yup and LOTR is one of my all time favorites

  4. I see a wonderful line-up of the movies you've picked :)

  5. Wonderful choices and a nice theme within the theme!!

    I ADORE Between Two Worlds!!!! It's one of my favorite John Garfield pictures (just FYI The Breaking Point with Patricia Neal is my number 1 of his). Even though it's an obvious Warners journeyman production loaded with members of their stock company there's just something about it that puts it a step above the ordinary for me. Some of that has to do with the fact that I'm a fan of every single performer in the cast (even Paul Henreid, he could be on the stiff side but he gets the job done though he's the weakest link) but it captures a certain dreamy quality. I've seen Outward Bound which is okay but quite staid and somehow even more stagy (because of the set-up that's inevitable but framing can lessen the impact).

    Of the three Stairway to Heaven is the one I was least enthusiastic about but it's a fine film.

    Taking a cue from your picks I thought along a less straight fantasy Lord of the Rings line and thought of the Alan Rickman/Juliet Stevenson bittersweet comedy Truly Madly Deeply, the flyaway but rather sweet Robert Downey Jr./Elisabeth Shue picture Heart and Souls and the Debbie Reynolds body switch farce Goodbye Charlie.

    I love Here Comes Mr. Jordan and Heaven Can Wait about evenly. Both have fantastic casts with most importantly a well matched set of buddies in Robert Montgomery and James Gleason & Warren Beatty and Jack Warden. If they didn't mesh neither picture would work. Then both have a perfect Mr. Jordan with Claude Rains and James Mason. Just lovely films.

    1. I am so glad you also love that movie. Henreid is pretty wooden but it works when he plays these certain characters. He also has that aristocratic snobbery that works so well. I can watch that movie again and again.
      I figured the original film would be more staged because of the time it came out.
      I do love Stairway ithink because of the way it is's just beautiful.
      I loved Dyan Cannon in the Beatty movie. She was good on this remake. You are so right about the camaraderie between the 2 stars. It wouldn't have worked well otherwise. I love James Mason!
      I love Truly, Madly, Deeply with a solid performance by Alan Rickman. I haven't seen the other 2 but really want to see Charlie as it was mentioned earlier by another..Shady. now I will comment o the other posts. I have been so behind.

  6. I liked Here Comes Mr. Jordan and Warren Beatty's remake. Chris Rock did one too? I bet it was silly! I haven't seen the other two, but, as a David Niven fan, that one has some appeal. ☺ A few that come to mind: Beetlejuice, Interview With The Vampire, and Always (1989) - a remake of A Guy Named Joe (1943).

    1. Beetle juice is great and there is supposed to be a 2nd one coming. I just saw that this morning. Interview is good and I lik A Guy Named Joe but have not seen Always.

  7. Heaven Can Wait is one of my favorite childhood films. I have never seen the original, though. Yeah, fantasy is a wide open genre. I don't know if I could narrow it to 3.

    1. I do like Heaven Can Wait and think it’s a really good remake. This is why I went to a theme within a theme. It’s such a genre all n it’s own.

  8. When I saw "fantasy" I was not too excited. A lot of fantasy films are just not my thing. But your picks are awesome! This is my kind of fantasy.

    I've seen all of your picks and enjoyed them. When I was a child I remember seeing "Between Two Worlds" and loved it, but I had no idea what the film was. I looked for it for years and not until just a couple of years ago did I find the film again on TCM. I recorded it again recently and will watch it again soon.

    I'll go with It's a Wonderful Life since that's the first one that came to mind. I know there are others that I could come up with, but for now my mind is a blank. Well, maybe not a blank, but thinking about other things.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

  9. You are the movie guru. I'm not familiar with these.
    Have a grand weekend.

  10. I saw a clip from "Stairway to Heaven" and was intrigued at the premise. Gonna have to go look for it....

  11. I have been offline off and on since Tuesday and just got back online a few minutes ago after losing power yesterday evening.

    I've never heard of any of these films, but I enjoyed your take on all of them. Hope you are well, dear.

  12. BIRGIT ~

    OK, now *THIS* is a great category, and I'm sorry I'm so (unfashionably) late to it.

    I've seen both '...MR. JORDAN' and 'HEAVEN CAN WAIT', and I prefer the latter.

    But I have never seen " A Matter of Life and Death", and your description of it has completely convinced me that I need to see it. (Although I've seen way more films than the average person has, over the years, you have turned me onto more than a few that I'd not seen until I followed your recommendation and was glad I did.)

    So, going just off the top of my head here (and excluding my favorite Christmas fantasy films), I'll mention...

    'ON BORROWED TIME' , which I just saw for the umpteenth time about five nights ago.

    'THE GHOST AND MRS. MUIR', one of my Top 25 favorite movies of all time, starring Gene Tierney and Sexy Rexy Harrison.

    I have to go with two, neck-and-neck here: 'HARVEY', with Uncle Jimmy, and 'CROSSROADS' in which a guitarist has to play the solo of his life to keep his best friend's soul from going to hell. (That movie is where my 'Battle Of The Bands' header photo came from.)

    There are so many great ones I could mention, but these four came to my mind quickly. I apologize again for my lateness here. UHP! I'm an idiot!!

    ~ D-FensDogG

  13. Birgit,

    I haven't seen any of these old films but sound worth the watch especially the last one. Your line of movie thinking made me think of the 80s film, "Oh Heavenly Dog" with Chevy Chase who dies and comes back as a dog played by Benji. What an amazingly cute pup and great acting! Other than that, my mind is blank. Thanks for sharing your picks, maybe I'll get lucky to find these available to stream.

  14. I've seen Heaven Can Wait but never the original - at least, not the whole thing. Your other two are completely new to me.

    So many. How could I pick just three?

    Labyrinth, of course. Muppets and David Bowie? What's not to love?

    Lord of the Rings, of course. I suppose I'll go with Return of the King, forced to pick one of the three. Honorable mention: original animated Hobbit.

    Princess Bride, of course.