Sunday, July 7, 2013

Fred Sears, 1913-1957

Today marks the centenary of director Fred Sears, who was a prolific director from 1950 up until his untimely deat from a heart attack at the age of 44. Sears was so prolific mostly because he was making B movies, and had an ability of making them quickly and not going over on the budget. What producer wouldn't like such qualities in a director?

In Sears' eight year directorial career, he made over 40 movies, most of which I know little about, to be honest. But there are some that I've mentioned in this blog before. Teenage Crime Wave deals with a good girl who gets mixed up with the wrong people, gets sent to juvenile detention, gets broken out of detention by the bad girl's boyfriend, and then more or less winds up hostage as the bad girl and her boyfriend try to escape.

I blogged about Rock Around the Clock back in July 2010. Sears not only directed that one, but also Don't Knock the Rock, which I briefly mentioned in the post as being one of the many films in the rock-and-roll genre to be released in the second half of the 1950s. Another music movie that sounds interesting, although I'd never heard of it before, is Calypso Heat Wave. Lower down the credits are Joel Gray, and... Maya Angelou!? Unsurprisingly, it's not on DVD.

Perhaps Sears' best movie is Earth vs. the Flying Saucers, which unsurprisingly involves aliens in flying saucers who come to earth, and when when the earthlings don't do what the aliens want, the alien saucers try to destry Earth. Ray Harryhausen provided the stop-motion effects for this one, which is going to be shoiwng at 2:00 AM on July 12 (overnight between this coming Thursday and Friday) as part of a TCM salute to Harryhausen.

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