5/1/14

BABY FACE ROONEY: UN FILM DU SIEGEL, DON...

Here's a nice little chunk (three and half minutes) of Don Siegel's 1957 "Baby Face Nelson", starring my dear friend Mickey Rooney (dig this post if you're interested in my warm and fuzzy encounter with the Mick). I've not yet seen the whole film but this little antipasta has piqued my interest for the main course, as it were. Interestingly, though the movie is set in the 20s (and thus the booze requires a "prescription" in the robbery scene you're about to see), the music they chose is straight up 1950s crime-bop--the Elmer Bernstein "Man With The Golden Arm" genre that was quite popular at the time. It's especially interesting in light of the fact that, according to Siegel, the producer of the film initially insisted on using 1940s cars instead of 1920s cars in order to save money. Siegel told him that "a little anachronism goes a long way" adding: "I suppose you'll dress the cast in 1940s clothes. I've looked up your record, Mr. Al Zimbalist. You've never made a successful picture!" (Siegel's memoir is filled with charming  encounters with producers such as this). Apparently Siegel won that fight. But he wasn't as lucky when it came to the score which, nonetheless, feels suitably low-budget and noir enough to make me want the soundtrack album that doesn't exist.



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