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Paul Henreid: From Eleanor Parker to THE FOUR HORSEMEN OF THE APOCALYPSE

Paul Henreid Eleanor Parker Between Two WorldsPaul Henreid: From Eleanor Parker to 'The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse' (photo: Paul Henreid and Eleanor Parker in 'Between Two Worlds')

Paul Henreid returns this evening, as Turner Classic Movies' Star of the Month of July 2013. In Of Human Bondage (1946), he stars in the old Leslie Howard role: a clubfooted medical student who falls for a ruthless waitress (Eleanor Parker, in the old Bette Davis role). Next on TCM, Henreid and Eleanor Parker are reunited in Between Two Worlds (1944), in which passengers aboard an ocean liner wonder where they are and where the hell (or heaven or purgatory) they're going.

Hollywood Canteen (1944) is a near-plotless, all-star showcase for Warner Bros.' talent, a World War II morale-boosting follow-up to that studio's Thank Your Lucky Stars, released the previous year. Last of the Buccaneers (1950) and Pirates of Tripoli (1955) are B pirate movies. The former is an uninspired affair, with Paul Henreid as Jean Lafitte; I haven't seen the latter. Just don't expect anything as lively as Robert Siodmak's The Crimson Pirate, a Burt Lancaster star vehicle released in 1952.

The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse

Following the success of its Best Picture Academy Award winner Ben-Hur (1959) — a remake of Fred Niblo's 1925 epic starring Ramon Novarro — MGM attempted to create another major critical and box office hit by rebooting another one of the studio's silent era blockbusters: Rex Ingram's 1921 sensation The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, the romantic epic that helped to turn Rudolph Valentino into a superstar.

Box-office lightning, however, didn't strike twice. Instead of another Ben-Hur, the 1962 The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse turned out to be a costly dud. A badly miscast Glenn Ford and Vincente Minnelli's conventional direction surely didn't help matters any; in fact, when the movie was screened to journalists there were reports of loud guffaws — especially at the Nazi occupation scenes. Admittedly, Milton Krasner's color cinematography is quite striking.

Of note: the voice coming out of the Ingrid Thulin's mouth belongs to former MGM contract player Angela Lansbury. Needless to say, Thulin did much better work in her native Sweden.

Paul Henreid movies

5:00 PM OF HUMAN BONDAGE (1946). Director: Edmund Goulding. Cast: Paul Henreid, Eleanor Parker, Alexis Smith, Edmund Gwenn, Patric Knowles, Janis Paige, Henry Stephenson, Isobel Elsom, Una O'Connor, Eva Moore. BW-106 mins.

7:00 PM BETWEEN TWO WORLDS (1944). Director: Edward A. Blatt. Cast: John Garfield, Eleanor Parker, Paul Henreid, Sydney Greenstreet, Edmund Gwenn, George Tobias, Faye Emerson, George Coulouris, Sara Allgood, Dennis King, Isobel Elsom, Lester Matthews. BW-112 mins.

9:00 PM HOLLYWOOD CANTEEN (1944). Director: Delmer Daves. Cast: Joan Leslie, Dane Clark, The Andrews Sisters, Jack Benny, Joe E. Brown, Eddie Cantor, Joan Crawford, Bette Davis, Jack Carson, Kitty Carlisle, Helmut Dantine, Faye Emerson, Victor Francen, John Garfield, Sydney Greenstreet, Alan Hale, Paul Henreid, Robert Hutton, Andrea King, Peter Lorre, Ida Lupino, Dorothy Malone, Irene Manning, Joan McCracken, Dolores Moran, Dennis Morgan, Janis Paige, Eleanor Parker, William Prince, Joyce Reynolds, Roy Rogers, Trigger, S.Z. Sakall, Zachary Scott, Alexis Smith, Barbara Stanwyck, Craig Stevens, Donald Woods, Jane Wyman. BW-124 mins.

11:15 PM PIRATES OF TRIPOLI (1955). Director: Felix Feist. Cast: Paul Henreid, Patricia Medina, Paul Newland, John Miljan, Mark Hanna, Jean Del Val, Lilian Bond, Eugene Borden, William Fawcett. C-71 mins. Letterbox Format.

12:30 AM LAST OF THE BUCCANEERS (1950). Director: Lew Landers. Cast: Paul Henreid, Jack Oakie, Karin Booth, Mary Anderson, Edgar Barrier, John Dehner, Harry Cording, Eugene Borden. C-79 mins.

2:00 AM THE FOUR HORSEMEN OF THE APOCALYPSE (1962). Director: Vincente Minnelli. Cast: Glenn Ford, Ingrid Thulin, Charles Boyer, Lee J. Cobb, Paul Lukas, Yvette Mimieux, Karl Boehm, Paul Henreid, Harriet E. MacGibbon, Kathryn Givney, George Dolenz, Nestor Paiva, Albert Rémy, Fifi D'Orsay. C-153 mins. Letterbox Format.

Paul Henreid movie schedule via the TCM website. Paul Henreid and Eleanor Parker in Between Two Worlds photo: Warner Bros.

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