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|Seventies & Eighties Made-For-TV Movies - M|
M STATION: HAWAII 1980 105 min. Jared Martin, Jo Ann Harris, Andrew Duggan, Dana Wynter, Lyle Bettger, Andrew Prine. Directed by Jack Lord. Cloak-and-dagger suspenser involving a Soviet sub missing off the coast of Hawaii. Hawaii-based crime-show pilot produced by Lord after retiring his HAWAII FIVE-O team. Average. M.A.D.D: MOTHERS AGAINST DRUNK DRIVING 1983 100 min. Mariette Hartley, Paula Prentiss, Bert Remsen, John Rubenstein, Cliff Potts, David Huddleston, Grace Zabriskie, Elizabeth Huddle, Nicolas Coster. Directed by William A. Graham. Hartley stands out as Carol Lightner, the California housewife/lobbyist behind the national anti-drunk driving group. Written and produced by Michael Braverman. Above average. THE MACAHANS 1976 125 min. James Arness, Eva Marie Saint, Bruce Boxleitner, Richard Kiley, Gene Evans, John Crawford. Directed by Bernard McEveety. Arness' first post-GUNSMOKE role as a buckskin-clad mountain scout guiding his brother's family on its westward trek from pre-Civil War Virginia. William Conrad narrates this lusty outdoor drama based in part on HOW THE WEST WAS WON; later it became a mini-series (and weekly show) using that title. Above average. MAD BULL 1977 100 min. Alex Karras, Susan Anspach, Nicholas Colasanto, Elisha Cook, Jr., Mike Mazurki, Christopher DeRose. Directed by Walter Doniger and Len Steckler. A hulking wrestler becomes involved with a warm, sensitive woman. Off-the-beaten path drama involving ex-football pro Karras in the bizarre world of wrestling. Average. MADAME SIN 1971 73 min. Robert Wagner, Bette Davis, Roy Kinnear, Paul Maxwell, Denholm Elliott. Directed by David Greene. An evil genius (Davis) uses a former C.I.A. agent as a pawn for control of a Polaris submarine. Elaborate production has Bad beating out Good at the end; with Bette in charge, well worth seeing. Above average. MADAME X 1981 100 min. Tuesday Weld, Len Cariou, Eleanor Parker, Robert Hooks, Jerry Stiller, Jeremy Brett, Martina Deignan, Robin Strand, Tom Tully. Directed by Robert Ellis Miller. Hard to believe this hardy soap opera would show up again, but here it is, updated somewhat by writer Edward Anhalt (who also appears as a judge). Average. MAE WEST 1982 100 min. Ann Jillian, James Brolin, Piper Laurie, Roddy McDowall, Chuck McCann, Louis Giambalvo, Lee-Jones DeBroux. Directed by Lee Phililps. Jillian is quite convincing, sashaying her way through the title role in this unexpectedly zesty biopic of La West. Written by E. Arthur Kean. Above average. MAGEE AND THE LADY 1978 Tony LoBianco, Sally Kellerman, Anne Selmer, Rod Mullinar, Kevin Leslie. Directed by Gene Levin. Elements of THE AFRICAN QUEEN and SWEPT AWAY combine in this story of a skipper's attemp to stall the repossession of his freighter by kidnapping the feisty daughter of the man who's threatening to foreclose on him. Australian production; average. Originally titled SHE'LL BE SWEET. MAGIC CARPET 1971 100 min. Susan St. James, Robert Pratt, Cliff Potts, Enzo Cerusico, Jim Backus, Wally Cox, Abby Dalton, Nanette Fabray. Directed by William Graham. This easy-going comedy with mystery overtones has a fill-in tour guide (St. James) earning her way through college in Rome, experiencing various problems in connection with an odd assortment of bus passengers. Enjoyable, unpretentious dialogue, clever situtations. Written and produced by Fabray's husband, Ranald MacDougall. Above average. THE MAGICIAN 1973 78 min. Bill Bixby, Keen Curtis, Joan Caulfield, Kim Hunter, Elizabeth Ashley, Barry Sullivan, Signe Hasso, Anne Lockhart. Directed by Marvin J. Chomsky. Pilot to the semi-successful series dealing with a magician-sleuth, here looking into a possible conspiracy and exposing a staged plane crash. Average. THE MAGNIFICENT MAGNET OF SANTA MESA 1977 78 min. Michael Burns, Dick Blasucci, Jane Cornell, Keene Curtis, Susan Blanchard, Harry Morgan, Tom Poston, Susan Sullivan, Conrad Janis, Loni Anderson. Directed by Hy Averback. Disney-esque farce with a young scientist (Burns) inventing an energy disk that can solve the world's problems, then trying to protect it from his altruistic bosses. The performances: stereotyped and frantic; the special effects: rock bottom. Below average. MAID IN AMERICA 1982 100 min. Susan Clark, Alex Karras, Fritz Weaver, Mildred Natwick, Barbara Byrne, David Spielberg, Beverly Hope Atkinson, Colby Chester. Directed by Paul Aaron. Genial romantic comedy about role changing, with the hulking Karras signing on as the family maid to crusading lawyer Clark's eccentric family. Written by Peter Feibleman. Above average. MAKING OF A MALE MODEL 1983 100 min. Joan Collins, Jon-Erik Hexum, Kevin McCarthy, Roxie Roker, Arte Johnson, Ted McGinley, Jeff Conway. Directed by Irving J. Moore. Slick hokum about a rancher who is plucked from obscurity by agency head Collins and transformed into a commercial "hunk" and centerfold sex object. Below average. MALIBU 1983 200 min. William Atherton, James Coburn, Susan Dey, Chad Everett, Steve Forrest, George Hamilton, Jenilee Harrison, Ann Jillian, Richard Mulligan, Dyan Cannon, Anthony Newley, Kim Novak, Valerie Perrine, Troy Donahue, Eva Marie Saint. Directed by E.W. Swackhammer. Sun, surf, sand and sex involving the pretty people of Southern California as glitteringly trashed in William Murray's novel. An all-star cast makes the flying fun, though the story's forgettable. Originally shown in two parts. Average. MAN FROM ATLANTIS 1977 100 min. Patrick Duffy, Belinda Montgomery, Art Lund, Dean Santoro, Victor Buono, Lawrence Pressman. Directed by Lee H. Katzin. Sci-fier about the last surviving citizen of an underwater kingdom who teams up with a pretty marine biologist to fight evil on Earth. Duffy is quite good as the underwater romantic lead with webbed hands who outswims and outleaps dolphins, and made an unlikely hero for a subsequent TV series. Above average. MAN FROM ATLANTIS: THE DEATH SCOUTS 1977 100 min. Patrick Duffy, Belinda Montgomery, Kenneth Tigar, Alan Fudge, Tiffany Bolling, Burr DeBenning, Russell Arms, Annette Cardona. Directed by Marc Daniels Sci-fi drama in which the title humanoid tries to thwart an invasion of earth by water-breathing aliens of another planet. Enjoyable nonsense. Average. THE MAN IN THE IRON MASK 1977 100 min. Richard Chamberlain, Patrick McGoohan, Louis Jourdan, Jenny Agutter, Vivien Merchent, Ian Holm, Ralph Richardson. Directed by Mike Newell. Stylish romantic adventure in this William Bast adaptation of the Dumas classic acted with panache by a sterling cast. Chamberlain can swashbuckle with the best of them. Grand entertainment. Above average. THE MAN IN THE SANTA CLAUS SUIT 1978 100 min. Fred Astaire, Gary Burghoff, John Byner, Bert Convy, Nanette Fabray, Harold Gould. Directed by Corey Allen. Yuletide fantasy of how Astaire (playing seven different characters) affects the lives of a variety of familiar TV faces. He also sings the title song -- delightfully. Average. MAN ON A STRING 1971 73 min. Christopher George, William Schallert, Joel Grey, Jack Warden, Kitty Winn, Michael Baseleon. Directed by Joseph Sargent. An undercover government agent maneuvers two Mafia families into a confrontation, almost dies when his identity is discovered. Predictable. Average. THE MAN WHO COULD TALK TO KIDS 1973 74 min. Peter Boyle, Scott Jacoby, Robert Reed, Colin Wilcox-Horne, Tyne Daly, Denise Nickerson, Jack Wade. Directed by Donald Wrye. Parents upset by their withdrawn, rebellious teen-age son, must resort to a social worker (Boyle) to reunite the family. Documentary approach to direction enhances the effect. Above average. THE MAN WHO DIED TWICE 1970 100 min. Stuart Whitman, Brigitte Fossey, Jeremy Slate, Bernard Lee, Steven Darden, Peter Damon. Directed by Joseph Sargent. The odd plot features Whitman as an aimless drifter and painter in Spain, attracted to a depressed French girl, unaware of her love's shady background. Various well-conceived supporting characters make the lead character's previous life interesting, but the film as a whole fails to gel. Average. THE MAN WHO WANTED TO LIVE FOREVER 1970 100 min. Stuart Whitman, Sandy Dennis, Burl Ives. Directed by John Trent. The new head of a heart research center in the Canadian wilderness slowly realizes the diabolical purpose of the current project. Poor climax, script, and dialogue. Average: Jumbled due to cutting from the original length used for foreign release. Alternate title: ONLY WAY OUT IS DEAD. THE MAN WITH THE POWER 1977 100 min. Bob Neill, Persis Khambatta, Tim O'Connor, Vic Morrow, Roger Perry. Directed by Nicholas Sgarro. A high school teacher discovers he inerited superhuman powers from his dad, a native of another planet, and is made an operative of a secret government agency. An entertaining SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN clone. Average. THE MAN WITHOUT A COUNTRY 1973 78 min. Cliff Robertson, Beau Bridges, Peter Strauss, Robert Ryan, Walter Abel, John Cullum, Geoffrey Holder, Sheppard Strudwick, Patricia Elliott. Directed by Delbert Mann. A tour-de-force performance by Robertson as Philip Nolan makes this Sidney Carroll adaptation of the Edward Eveerett Hale classic shine. Not much action but a magnificent character study. Above average. MANDRAKE 1979 100 min. Anthony Herrera, Simone Griffeth, Ji-Tu Cambuka, Gretchen Corbett, Peter Haskell, Robert Reed. Directed by Harry Falk. The long-time comic strip favorite's TV debut in this pilot has him using his legendary legerdermain to fight an extortionist trying to take a business tycoon for $10-million. Average. MANEATER 1973 78 min. Ben Gazzara, Sheree North, Kip Niven, Laurette Spang, Richard Basehart, Claire Brennan. Directed by Vince Edwards. Four city-bred vacationers vs. two hungry tigers set on them by mad animal trainer Basehart. An interesting thriller written by director Edwards and acted with verve by a good cast. Above average. MANEATERS ARE LOOSE! 1978 100 min. Tom Skerritt, Steve Forrest, G.D. Spradlin, Harry Morgan, Diana Muldaur, Dabney Coleman. Directed by Timothy Galfas. A down-and-out animal trainer abandons his tigers near a small California community and lets them fend for themselves. Average. MANHUNTER 1974 78 min. Ken Howard, Gary Lockwood, Tim O'Connor, James Olson, Stefanie Powers, John Anderson, L.Q. Jones. Directed by Walter Grauman. Period action drama pitting ex-marine (WWI) Howard against Bonnie-and-Clyde style bank robbers. Later became a series. Average. THE MANHUNTER 1976 98 min. Sandra Dee, Roy Thinnes, William Smith, David Brian, Madlyn Rhue, Albert Salmi, Al Hirt. Directed by Don Taylor. A safari hunter is hired by an American banker to avenge the death of his son during a small-town bank robbery. Typical premise-gone-awry situation, due to contrived plotting. Made in 1968. Average. MARATHON 1980 100 min. Bob Newhart, Leigh Taylor-Young, Herb Edelman, Dick Gautier, Anita Gillette, John Hillerman. Directed by Jackie Cooper. Flat comedy dealing with a happily married middle-aged stockbroker whose head is turned by a pretty young thing and is encouraged to move from casual jogging to marathon running. Average. MARCIANO 1979 100 min. Tony Lo Bianco, Belinda J. Montgomery, Vincent Gardenia, Richard Herd, Dolph Sweet. Directed by Bernard L. Kowalski. The story of heavyweight champ Rocky Marciano -- the only fighter to retire from the ring undefeated with a perfect record. The focus here is on his less-than-enthralling private life, and the romantic slush sends Rocky down for the long count. Average. MARIAN ROSE WHITE 1982 100 min. Nancy Cartwright, Valerie Perrine, Katharine Ross, Charles Aidman, Frances Lee McCain, Louis Giambalvo, John Considine. Directed by Robert Day. The true story of a normal teenager who was dumped into a home for the feebleminded by her widowed mother and spent the next 30 years there (condensed to just four in this movie). Cartwright is excellent as the teenaged Marian but hampered by Garry Rusoff's weak script. Average. MARILYN: THE UNTOLD STORY 1980 150 min. Catherine Hicks, Richard Basehart, Frank Converse, John Ireland, Viveca Lindfors, Jason Miller, Sheree North, Bill Vint. Directed by John Flynn, Jack Arnold, Lawrence Schiller. The second -- and far superior -- Marilyn Monroe movie, with a sterling MM portrayal by Hicks (Emmy Award-nominated). Dalene Young's script was based on Norman Mailer's Monroe biography. This one gets a special mention as the only TV film crediting three directors! Above average. THE MARK OF ZORRO 1974 78 min. Frank Langella, Ricardo Montalban, Gilbert Roland, Yvone De Carlo, Louise Sorel, Anne Archer, Robert Middleton. Directed by Don McDougall. Langella buckles and swashes in this tepid remake. Montalban is properly villainous, Roland surprisingly spry at wall-scaling. Best of all: unforgettable Alfred Newman musical score from the 1940 film, interpolated here. Average. MARRIAGE IS ALIVE AND WELL 1980 100 min. Joe Namath, Jack Albertson, Melinda Dillon, Judd Hirsch, Susan Sullivan, Fred McCarren, Nicholas Pryor. Directed by Russ Mayberry. Standard sitcom view of marriage with Namath playing a freelance wedding photographer tying together several occassionally humorous viginettes. Average. MARRIAGE: YEAR ONE 1971 100 min. Sally Field, Robert Pratt, Cicely Tyson, William Windom, Agnes Moorehead, Neville Brand. Directed by William Graham. Tedious love story, with a modern city an important backdrop as two newlyweds try to make it through a tough first year. A great supporting cast is the only asset. Average. A MARRIED MAN 1984 200 min. Anthony Hopkins, Ciaran Madden, Lisa Hilboldt, Yvonne Coulette, John LeMesurier, Sophie Ashton. Directed by John Davies. Veddy-British domestic drama about a bored barrister, his proper wife and his paramour. Mixed in with the suds and lather is a murder, but despite another of Hopkins' always interesting performances, this is a lethargic exercise that easily could have been halved. Average. THE MARVA COLLINS STORY 1981 100 min. Cicely Tyson, Morgan Freeman, Roderick Wimberly, Mashuane Hardy, Brett Bouldin, Samuel Muhammad, Jr., Edward Asner (narrator). Directed by Peter Levin. Moving drama about the Chicago schoolteacher who gained national recognition for her stunning achievements with ghetto "untouchables" afer she and they had abandoned the traditional school system. Glorious performance by Tyson (in a rare contemporary role). Script by Clifford Campion. Above average. MARY AND JOSEPH: A STORY OF FAITH 1979 100 min. Blanche Baker, Jeff East, Colleen Dewhurst, Stephen McHattie, Lloyd Bochner, Paul Hecht. Directed by Eric Till. A pedestrian what-might-have-been depiction of Biblical events focusing on Christ's parents as a struggling young couple and the early days of their marriage. The leads play it as a pair of American youngsters plunked down in Bibical Nazareth. Below average. MARY JANE HARPER CRIED LAST NIGHT 1977 100 min. Susan Dey, Bernie Casey, Tricia O'Neil, John Vernon, Kevin McCarthy. Directed by Allen Reisner. This drama about child abuse benefits from a sensitive Joanna Lee script and sincere performances by all involved. Average. MARY WHITE 1977 100 min. Ed Flanders, Kathleen Beller, Fionnula Flanagan, Tim Matheson, Donald Moffat. Directed by Jud Taylor. Moving drama, told poetically, based on the writings of Pulitzer Prize-winning newsman William Allen White after the tragic death of his teenaged daughter in 1921. Leisurely-paced, not for every taste, but class tells and so does Ed Flanders, who is superb. Script by Caryl Ledner. Above average. THE MASK OF SHEBA 1969 100 min. Walter Pidgeon, Inger Stevens, Eric Braeden, William Marshall, Stephen Young. Directed by David Lowell Rich. Typical jungle drama mixes a search for missing safari members, a gold statue coveted by natives, treacherous territory, angry tribesmen, and intrigue within the rescue party. Cast tries hard but the script is stacked against them. Below average. MASSARATI AND THE BRAIN 1982 100 min. Peter Billingsley, Christopher Hewett, Markie Post, Ann Turkel, Camilla Sparv, Christopher Lee. Directed by Harvey Hart. A soldier of fortune teams up with his geniune twelve-year-old nephew to thwart neo-Nazi terrorists' grab for sunken treasure. TV pilot aimed at the Saturday morning crowd. Average. MATT HELM 1975 78 min. Tony Franciosa, Ann Turkel, Gene Evans, Patrick Macnee, Hari Rhodes, James Shigeta, Laraine Stephens, John Vernon, Catherine Bach. Directed by Buzz Kulik. Private eye Helm finds himself neck deep in an international black market arms operation while trying to protect a movie star whose life is threatened. When 'ol Dino played Helm in four movies, he was a crack secret agent. Pilot to the short-lived series. Average. A MATTER OF LIFE AND DEATH 1981 98 min. Linda Lavin, Salome Jens, Gail Strickland, Ramon Bieri, Tyne Daly, Larry Breeding, John Bennett Perry, Gerald S. O'Loughlin. Directed by Russ Mayberry. The true-life story of Joy Ufema, a nurse dedicated to treating the terminally ill. Writer Lane Slate based his teleplay on Ufema's career after she gained national recognition on 60 MINUTES. Average. A MATTER OF SEX 1984 100 min. Jean Stapleton, Dinah Manoff, Judge Reinhold, Pamela Putch, Gillian Farrell, Diana Reis, Nancy Beatty. Directed by Lee Grant. The saga of the Willmar 8 -- eight women bank employees who waged at two-year struggle working with a picket line seeking pay equality with their male coworkers. A concerned effort by all, but nowhere near the acclaimed PBS documentary on the same subject that Grant produced. Manoff is Grant's daughter; Putch is Stapleton's. Average. A MATTER OF WIFE...AND DEATH 1975 Rod Taylor, Joe Santos, Luke Askew, Tom Drake, John Colicos, Anita Gillette, Anne Archer, Lynda Carter, Cesare Danova. Directed by Marvin Chomsky. Freewheeling private eye Taylor goes after the killers of a friend, a small-time hood, and gets involved in a big-time gambling opration. Taylor plays Shamus, the unorthodox detective done on the big screen by Burt Reynolds. Average. MAYBE I'LL COME HOME IN THE SPRING 1970 74 min. Sally Field, Jackie Cooper, Eleanor Parker, Lane Bradbury, David Carradine, Harry Lauter. Directed by Joseph Sargent. A year in the life of the Miller family: Denise (Field) cant take home life, splits for commune existence, and returns after disillusionment and drug experiences take their toll. The experiences after she returns make the film worthwhile, refusing to pull punches. Game attempt by Bruce Feldman at scripting without set lines of dialogue. Linda Ronstadt performs songs. Above average. MAYFLOWER: THE PILGRIMS' ADVENTURE 1979 100 min. Anthony Hopkins, Richard Crenna, Jenny Agutter, Trish Van Devere, John Heffernan, David Dukes, Michael Beck. Directed by George Schaeffer. Lavish production, earnest performances, period costumes -- but it's reduced to a soap opera circa 1620. Stick with Spencer Tracy & friends in PLYMOUTH ADVENTURE. Average. MAZES AND MONSTERS 1982 100 min. Tom Hanks, Wendy Crewson, David Wallace, Chris Makepeace, Lloyd Bochner, Peter Donat, Anne Francis, Murray Hamilton. Direced by Steven H. Stern. Four college students become involved in the medieval fantasy world of game-playing. Tom Lazarus's intriguing "Dungeons and Dragons" script from Rona Jaffe's book make this Canadian production an engrossing suspenser. Above average. McCLOUD: WHO KILLED MISS U.S.A.? 1969 100 min. Dennis Weaver, Craig Stevens, Diana Muldaur, Mark Richman, Terry Carter, Raul Julia, Shelly Novack. Directed by Richard Colla. A U.S. deputy marshall assigned to transport a valuable witness from New Mexico to N.Y.C. must prove his worth to Eastern superiors when he loses the witness soon after he disembarks from the plane. Good location work in the pilot for the long-running series, inspired by the movie COOGAN'S BLUFF. Above average. Retitled PORTRAIT OF A DEAD GIRL. MEDICAL STORY 1975 100 min. Beau Bridges, Jose Ferrer, Claude Akins, Wendell Burton, Shirley Knight, Carl Reiner, Martha Scott, Sidney Chaplin. Directed by Gary Nelson. Idealistic intern Bridges clashes with noted gynecologist Ferrer over an unnecessary surgery. An intelligent drama by Abby Mann that led the way to the subsequent hospital anthology series. Average. MELVIN PURVIS - G-MAN 1974 78 min. Dale Robertson, Harris Yulin, Margaret Blye, Matt Clark, Elliott Street, John Karlen, David Canary, Dick Sargent. Directed by Dan Curtis. Robertson flamboyantly portrays lawman Purvis in this breezy fictional account (by John Milius) of his pursuit of Machine Gun Kelly (Yulin) through the midwest of the early '30s. A wonderful send-up of the type of gangster movie they don't make anymore. Retitled THE LEGEND OF MACHINE GUN KELLY. Sequel: THE KANSAS CITY MASSACRE. MEMORIAL DAY 1983 100 min. Mike Farrell, Shelley Fabares, Keith Mitchell, Bonnie Bedalia, Robert Walden, Edward Herrmann, Bert Remsen. Directed by Joseph Sargent. A successful lawyer's unplanned reunion with some Vietnam war buddies triggers memories he had struggled to ptu behind him. Powerful performances by Farrell and Walden give this o ne -- an original by Michael Bortman -- guts. Above average. MEMORIES NEVER DIE 1982 100 min. Lindsay Wagner, Peter Billingsley, Barbara Babcock, Barbara Cason, Richard McKenzie, Richard Yniguez, Jay Robinson. Directed by Sandor Stern. Psychological drama about a woman who returns home after six years in a mental hospital only to find the same hostile environment she left behind. Based on Zoe Sherbourne's A STRANGER IN THE HOUSE. Average. THE MEMORY OF EVA RYKER 1980 144 min. Natalie Wood, Robert Foxworth, Ralph Bellamy, Roddy McDowall, Bradford Dillman, Jean-Pierre Aumont, Peter Graves, Mel Ferrer, Morgan Fairchild. Directed by Walter Grauman. A stellar Irwin Allen disaster movie, with Wood, in a mother/daughter dual role, haunted by her experience in the wartime torpedoing of a luxury liner, with four decades later still has a fascination for a number of people. Average. MESSAGE TO MY DAUGHTER 1973 78 min. Martin Sheen, Bonnie Bedelia, Kitty Winn, Neva Patterson, Mark Slade, Lucille Benson. Directed by Robert Michael Lewis. Poignant melodrama about confused teenager (Winn) who finds her emotional strength from tapes recorded years earlier by her long-deceased mother (Bedelia). Quality casting makes the difference on this weeper, not unlike SUNSHINE. Average. MICKEY SPILLANE'S MARGIN FOR MURDER 1981 100 min. Kevin Dobson, harles Hallahan, Cindy Pickett, Donna Dixon, Asher Brauner, Floyd Levine, Aarika Wells, John Considine. Directed by Daniel Haller. Fictional gumshoe Mike Hammer returns to track down the killer of his best friend; this pilot to a new series didn't sell, but a subsequent one, MURDER ME, MURDER YOU, with Stacy Keach, did. Average.
MIDNIGHT LACE 1980 100 min. Mary Crosby, Gary Frank, Celeste Holm, Carolyn Jones, Shecky Greene, Robin Clarke, Susan Tyrell. Directed by Ivan Nagy. Trite road-company update of the old Doris Day thriller providing Bing Crosby's daughter, Mary, with her first starring role. Based on Janet Green's novel, MATHILDA SHOUTED FIRE. Below average. MIDNIGHT OFFERINGS 1981 100 min. Melissa Sue Anderson, Mary McDonough, Patrick Cassidy, Marion Ross, Gordon Jump, Cathryn Damon. Directed by Rod Holcomb. Teenage witchcraft results in a contest between good and evil. Below average. THE MIGRANTS 1974 78 min. Cloris Leachman, Ron Howard, Sissy Spacek, Cindy Williams, Ed Lauter, Lisa Lucas, Mills Watson, Claudia McNeil, Dolph Sweet. Directed by Tom Gries. The acclaimed Tennesse Williams drama, adapted for TV by Lanford Wilson, using one fictional family's plight as a microcosm for the migratory worker's "harvest of shame" that Edward R. Morrow graphically documented years earlier. Produced on tape. Above average. MILES BEFORE I GO TO SLEEP 1975 78 min. Martin Balsam, Mackenzie Phillips, Kitty Winn, Pamelyn Ferdin, Elizabeth Wilson, Florida Friebus, James Keach, Lillian Randolph. Directed by Fielder Cook. A lonely old man and a teenaged delinquent develop a spiritual bond in the type of quiet drama that was a staple of live TV in an early day; director Cook, who did so many of them so well, should know the territory. Average. THE MILLION DOLLAR FACE 1981 97 min. Tony Curtis, David Huffman, Herschel Bernardi, Gayle Hunnicutt, Lee Grant, Polly Bergen, William Daniels, Sylvia Kristel, Roddy McDowall, Murray Matheson. Directed by Michael O'Hurliy. A busted pilot for Curtis, who plays the ruthless head of a cosmetics firm locked in fierce competition with a firm run by his ex-lover Grant. Based on Lois Wyse's novel, KISS, INC. Average. MILLION DOLLAR INFIELD 1982 100 min. Rob Reiner, Bonnie Bedelia, Bob Costanza, Christopher Guest, Bruno Kirby, Candy Azzara, Gretchen Corbett, Elizabeth Wilson. Directed by Hal Cooper. Four affluent Long Islanders devote themselves to their softball team at the expense of their crumbling personal lives. A bittersweet comedy co-written (with pal Phil Mishkin) and co-produced (with Peter Katz) by Reiner. Average. THE MILLION DOLLAR RIP-OFF 1976 78 min. Freddie Prinze, Allen Garfield, Linda Scruggs Bogart, Joanna de Varona, Christine Belford, Brooke Mills. Directed by Alexander Singer. Heist movie; ex-con electronics wizard Prinze (in his only film) and four female accomplices knock over a Chicago subway system, to the annoyance of ulcer-ridden detective Garfield. Below average. THE MILLIONAIRE 1978 100 min. Martin Balsam, Edward Albert, The Hudson Bros., Pat Crowley, Ralph Bellamym, Jane Wyatt, John Ireland, William Demarest, Robert Quarry. Directed by Don Weis. An updated version of the 1950s TV series with eccentric (and never seen) John Beresford Tipton doling out million-dollar cashier checks through his discreet right-hand man, Michael Anthony (played here by Quarry). Familiar faces, familiar situations. Average. MINSTREL MAN 1977 100 min. Glynn Turman, Ted Ross, Stanley Clay, Saundra Sharp, Art Evans, Gene Bell. Directed by William A. Graham. Engrossing drama tracing the era of black minstrelsy and the evolution of ragtime at the turn of the century. Rich performances by Turman as an ambitious song-and-dance man, Clay as a dedicated musician racked by racial consciousness, Ross as a rascally impresario. Written by Richard and Esther Shapiro (DYNASTY). Outstanding. THE MIRACLE OF KATHY MILLER 1981 100 min. Sharon Gless, Frank Converse, Helen Hunt, Bill Beyers, John deLancie, Michael Greene. Directed by Robert Lewis. Dramatization of the true story of an Arizona teenager who overcame massive brain and other physical damage after being run over by a speeding auto and became a world-famed athelete. Script by Mel and Ethel Briz. Above average. MIRACLE ON ICE 1981 150 min. Karl Malden, Andrew Stevens, Steven Guttenberg, Jerry Houser, Jessica Walter, Robert F. Lyons, Robert Peirce, Eugene Roche. Directed by Steven Hilliard Stern. The story of the U.S. hockey team's gold medal triumph at the 1980 Olympics at Lake Placid. Malden is exhilarating as Coach Herb Brooks; so is the skating. The story, written by Lionel Chetwynd, is otherwise pedestrian. Average. MIRACLE ON 34TH STREET 1973 100 min. Jane Alexander, David Hartman, Roddy McDowall, Sebastian Cabot, Suzanne Davidson, Jim Backus, Tom Bosley, David Doyle, James Gregory, Roland Winters. Directed by Fielder Cook. Heartwarming humor and old-fashioned whimsy in this TV adaptation of the 1947 Christmas classic. Good cast, but the plot's awfully dated now. Average. MIRROR, MIRROR 1979 100 min. Janet Leigh, Lee Meriwether, Loretta Swit, Robert Vaughn, Peter Bonerz, Christopher Lemmon. Directed by Joanna Lee. Three women's efforts to reshape their lives through cosmetic surgery. Earnest but less than uplifting. Average. MISS ALL-AMERICAN BEAUTY 1982 96 min. Diane Lane, Cloris Leachman, David Dukes, Jayne Meadows, Alice Hirson, Brian Kerwin. Directed by Gus Trikonis. A toothless SMILE lacking the bite as well as Michael Ritchie's satirical touch, though Meadows's beauty pageant director gives it a shot. Below average. MISSING CHILDREN: A MOTHER'S STORY 1982 100 min. Mare Winningham, Polly Holliday, John Anderson, Jane Wyatt, Kate Capshaw, Scatman Crothers, Richard Dysart, Peter Scolari. Directed by Dick Lowry. An abused and penniless young mother loses her children to an adaption agency posing as a child-care center. Winningham rises above the drama's predicability. Average. MISSING PIECES 1983 96 min. Elizabeth Montgomery, Louanne, John Reilly, Ron Karabatsos, Robin Gammell, Julius Harris. Directed by Mike Hodges. Montgomery turns to a private eye to track down the killers of her reporter husband in this engaging thriller which director Hodges adapted from Karl Alexander's novel PRIVATE INVESTIGATION. Karabotsos steals the film from her as the world-weary detective for whom she goes to work. Above average. MR. AND MRS. BO JO JONES 1971 73 min. Desi Arnaz, Jr., Christopher Norris, Dan Dailey, Dina Merrill, Susan Strasberg, Tom Bosley, Jessie Royce Landis. Directed by Robert Day. A young couple in a small town undergoing parental and neighborhood pressures. Despite OK performances, a mediocre script makes the film forgettable. Average. MR. HORN 1979 200 min. David Carradine, Richard Widmark, Karen Black, Jeremy Slate, Enrique Lucero, Jack Starrett. Directed by Jack Starrett. Rambling, episodic Western by William Goldman about a legendary frontier folk hero beat Steve McQueen's TOM HORN to the punch. Average. MISTER JERICO 1969 85 min. Patrick Macnee, Mary Allen, Connie Stevens, Herbert Lom, Leonardo Pieroni, Peter Yapp. Directed by Sidney Hayers. Con-man Jerico (Macnee) and his assistant not only party after a famed Gemini diamond owned by a corrupt millionaire (Lom) on Malta, but who has the real one? Good dialogue, but the plot twists lack punch. One good chase involving great location work. Above average. MRS. R'S DAUGHTER 1979 100 min. Cloris Leachman, Season Hubley, Donald Moffat, John McIntire, Stephen Elliott, Ron Rifkin. Direted by Dan Curtis. The frustrating battle of a determined mother to bring her daughter's rapist to trial. Hell hath no fury like an angry Leachman, and it's proved in this none-too-encouraging glimpse at our contemporary court system. Average. MISTRESS OF PARADISE 1981 100 min. Genevieve Bujold, Chad Everett, Anthony Andrews, Olivia Cole, John McLiam, Lelia Goldoni, Carolyn Seymour. Directed by Peter Medak. Gothic-style pap that wastes Bujold, in her TV movie debut, as a beauty from up North who marries a worldly Southern plantation owner and gets involved in voodoo. Below average. MOBILE TWO 1975 78 min. Jackie Cooper, Julie Gregg, Mark Wheeler, Edd Byrnes, Jack Hogan, Joe E. Tata. Directed by David Moessinger. A Jack Webb-produced story about an investigative TV reporter's various assignments (in the proven tradition of Webb's ADAM 12 and EMERGENCY). Standard TV fodder that led to a brief series, MOBILE ONE (accounting, presumably, for a lower budget). Average. MONEY ON THE SIDE 1982 100 min. Karen Valentine, Jamie Lee Curtis, Linda Purl, Christopher Lloyd, Richard Masur, Gary Graham, Edward Edwards, Susan Flannery. Directed by Robert Collins. Suburban housewives become afternoon hookers to bring in extra cash. Who says TV-movies are exploitative? Average. MONEY TO BURN 1973 73 min. E.G. Marshall, Mildred Natwick, Alejandro Rey, Cleavon Little, David Doyle, Charles McGraw, Ronald Fienberg, Lou Frizzell. Directed by Robert Michael Lewis. Marshalls' the standout in this tale of a fairly clever scheme to make use of counterfeit currency printed up in a federal penitentiary. Average. MONGO'S BACK IN TOWN 1971 73 min. Joe Don Baker, Telly Savalas, Sally Field, Anne Francis, Charles Cioffi, Martin Sheen. Directed by Marvin Chomsky. This ultragrim and deliberately slow-moving crime drama has a recently released con (Baker) returning to his home town, hired by his brother to kill a rival. This adaptation of a story by an actual convict is strong on atmosphere but uncertain about its point of view. Above average. MOONLIGHT 1982 78 min. Robert Desidero, Michelle Phillips, William Prince, Antony Pozini, Benson Fong, Rosalind Chao. Directed by Alan Smithee. A fast-food delivery man stumbles upon an international terrorist's assassination plot. Pilot to a busted series. A familiar pseudonym covers two directors -- Jackie Cooper and Rod Holcomb. Average. MORE THAN FRIENDS 1979 100 min. Penny Marshall, Rob Reiner, Kay Medford, Claudette Nevins, Howard Hesseman, Dabney Coleman. Directed by Jim Burrows. An occasionally hilarious romantic comedy by Reiner loosely based on his early courtship of then real-life wife Marshall. Above average. MOSES 1975 141 min. Burt Lancaster, Anthony Quayle, Ingrid Thulin, Irene Papas, William Lancaster, Mariangela Melato, Laurent Terzieff. Directed by Gianfranco DeBosio. The theatrical version of the six-hour MOSES - THE LAWGIVER is not very impressive, with so-so special effects and a sold cast wasted in this British-Italian production. Screenplay by Anthony Burgess and Vittorio Bonicelli, but you're better off reading the book. Below average. MOTHER AND DAUGHTER - THE LOVING WAR 1980 100 min. Tuesday Weld, Frances Sternhagen, Katherine Beller, Jeanne Lang, Ed Winter. Directed by Burt Brincknerhoff. A young woman turns to her mother for help when her teenage daughter begins to rebel -- just as SHE did twenty years ago. Above average. MOTHER'S DAY ON WALTONS MOUNTAIN 1982 100 min. Ralph Waite, Michael Learned, Jon Walmsley, Judy Norton-Taylor, Mary Beth McDonough, Eric Scott, David W. Harper, Kami Cotler, Joe Conley, Ronnie Claire Edwards, Kip Niven, Richard Gilliland, John Considine. Directed by Gwen Arner. The second WALTONS TV movie drama following the series' demise involving the family in the days just after WW2. Average. MOUSEY 1974 78 min. Kirk Douglas, Jean Seberg, John Vernon, Bessie Love, Suzanne Lloyd, Sam Wanamaker, Bessie Love, Suzanne Lloyd, Sam Wanamaker, James Bradford. Directed by Daniel Petrie. Thriller about a milquetoast teacher (Douglas) who stops at nothing to take vengeance on his ex-wife. Tightly made, and Kirk's wonderfully sinister. Released theatrically overseas as CAT AND MOUSE. Above average. THE MOVIE MURDERER 1970 99 min. Arthur Kennedy, Robert Webber, Warren Oates, Tom Selleck, Norma Crane, Nita Talbot, Russell Johnson, Elisha Cook. Directed by Boris Sagal. An arsonist specializing in destroying jet liners is inadvertently filmed, searches for the negatives, and becomes the quarry of an insurance investigator and detective. A passable hunter-versus-hunted story with good performances, and the novelty value of many vintage film clips. Average. MUGGABLE MARY, STREET COP 1982 100 min. Karen Valentine, John Getz, Anne DeSalvo, Robert Christian, Michael Pearlman, Vincent Gardenia. Directed by Sandor Stern. A single parent becomes an undercover cop in this dramatization of the true story of Mary Glatzle. Director Stern based his screenplay on her book MUGGAGLE MARY. Average. MULLIGAN'S STEW 1977 78 min. Lawrence Pressman, Elinor Donahue, Johnny Whitaker, Alex Karras, K.C. Martel, Julie Haddock. Directed by Noel Black. Sentimental comedy about a high school coach with a wife and three kids who takes four orphans into his house. The innumerable complications have been similarly explored in MIXED COMPANY as well as TV's FISH but they developed a series from this one regardless. Average. MURDER AT THE MARDI GRAS 1978 100 min. Didi Conn, Bill Daily, David Groh, David Wayne, Harry Morgan, Joyce Van Patten, Barbi Benton. Directed by Ken Annakin. Featherbrained thriller about a bubble-headed girl (Conn) who witnesses the title crime, then is talked by the killer. How did a director like Annakin get involved with this? Average. MURDER AT THE WORLD SERIES 1971 100 min. Lynda Day George, Murray Hamilton, Karen Valentine, Michael Parks, Janet Leigh, Hugh O'Brian, Nancy Kelly, Joseph Wiseman, Tamara Dobsno, Gerald S. O'Loughlin, Bruce Boxleitner. Directed by Andrew V. McLaglen. A psychic plots a bizarre kidnapping during the World Series at the Houston Astrodome. Predictable second-rate thriller with the usual all-star cast of stereotypes. Below average. MURDER BY NATURAL CAUSES 1979 100 min. Hal Holbrook, Katherine Ross, Richard Anderson, Barry Bostwick, Bill Fiore, Jeff Donnell. Directed by Robert Day. An outstanding thinking man's thriller that has the unfaithful wife of a famed mentalist trying to do him in by literally scaring him to death. Well acted and written -- and don't blink for the last reel or you'll miss countless clever twists. One of the best from the writing/producing team of Richard Levinson and William Link. Above average. MURDER CAN HURT YOU 1980 105 min. Victor Buono, John Byner, Tony Danza, Jamie Farr, Gavin MacLeod, Buck Owens, Connie Stevens, Jimmie Walker, Burt Young, Marty Allen, Richard Deacon, Liz Torres, Don Adams (narrator). Directed by Roger Duchowny. TV's answer to MURDER BY DEATH with eight comic super-sleuths forming an uneasy alliance against a common foe, the evil Man in White. It's silly season. Average. MURDER IN COWETA COUNTY 1983 100 min. Johnny Cash, Andy Griffith, Earl Hindman, June Carter Cash, Cindi Knight, Ed Van Nuys. Directed by Gary Nelson. No-nonsense county sheriff Cash stops at nothing -- including his legal jurisdiction -- to track down local bigwig Griffith, who thinks he's gotten away with murder. Dennis Nemac wrote the straightforward script from Margaret Anne Barnes's book about an actual 1948 Georgia murder. Average. MURDER IN MUSIC CITY 1979 100 min. Sonny Bono, Lee Purcell, Claude Akins, Belinda Montgomery, Harry Bellaver. Directed by Leo Penn. The cherished memory of Nick and Nora Charles is tarnished with this tacky (rather than wacky) whodunit plot that sends a brash songwriter-turned-detective and his photographer's model bride on the trail of a killer in Nashville. Also known as THE COUNTRY MUSIC MURDERS. Below average. MURDER IN PEYTON PLACE 1977 100 min. Christopher Connelly, Dorothy Malone, Ed Nelson, Stella Stevens, Janet Margolin, David Hedison, Tim O'Connor. Directed by Bruce Kessler. A mystery-drama reuniting members of the old TV series following the strange deaths of Allison MacKenzie and Rodney Harrington (whom everyone remembers as Mia Farrow and Ryan O'Neal before they became stars). Everything's the same in the town -- with ten years of gossip and intrigue added. Average. MURDER IN TEXAS 1981 200 min. Katherine Ross, Sam Elliott, Farrah Fawcett, Andy Griffith, Craig T. Nelson, Dimitra Arliss, Barry Corbin, Pamela Myers, Bill Dana. Directed by Billy Hale. Dramatization of the murder case revolving around Houston plastic surgeon Dr. John Hill, who was accused of kiling his socially prominent first wife. John McGreevey based his script on the book PRESCRIPTION: MURDER, written by Hill's second wife, Ann Kurth (played by Ross). Andy Griffith won an Emmy Award nomination for his performance as Hill's father-in-law, wealthy oilman Ash Robinson. Above average. 'MURDER ME, MURDER YOU' 1983 100 min. Stacy Keach, Tanya Roberts, Don Stroud, Delta Burke, Tom Atkins, Lisa Blount, Michelle Phillips. Directed by Gary Nelson. Keach is aces as private eye Mike Hammer going in search of the daughter he never knew in this pilot to the second TV series about Mickey Spillane's hard-hitting shamas. (The 1950s version starred Daren McGavin.) This one was scripted by Bill Stratton. Above average. MURDER ONCE REMOVED 1971 74 min. John Forsythe, Richard Kiley, Barbara Bain, Joseph Campanella, Wendell Burton. Directed by Charles Dubin. A "perfect crime" attempted by a respectable doctor. The cast provides ensemble quality to the plot, the atmosphere is convincing, but the film is a carbon copy of 100 you've seen before. Average. MURDER ONE, DANCER O 1983 100 min. Robert Blake, Kenneth McMillan, William Prince, Jane Daly, Royal Dano, Sydney Lassick, Sondra Blake, Robin Dearden. Directed by Reza Badiyi. The third of Black's JOE DANCER movies has the shamus out to clear himself of trumped-up manslaughter charges while investigating a Hollywood scandal. Blake gave this personal project three good shots, but it was a no go as a series. Average. MURDER OR MERCY 1974 78 min. Bradford Dillman, Melvyn Douglas, David Birney, Mildred Dunnock, Denver Pyle, Robert Webber, Kent Smith. Directed by Harvey Hart. A courtroom drama about a mercy killing, with noted doctor Douglas on trial for his terminally ill wife. Douglas and Dunnock are wonderful as always, but the plot too closely resembles AN ACT OF MURDER. Average. MURDOCK'S GANG 1973 74 min. Alex Dreier, Janet Leigh, Murray Hamilton, William Daniels, Harold Gould, Don Knight. Directed by Charles S. Dubin. An embezzling bookkeper is the object of a search by a disbarred attorney (Dreier) and a group of ex-cons. A colorful cast and amusing situations in an inconsequential but diverting tale by Edmund H. North. Average. MY BODY, MY CHILD 1982 100 min. Vanessa Redgrave, Joseph Campanella, Stephen Elliott, James Naughton, Gail Strickland, Jack Albertson. Directed by Marvin J. Chomsky. A woman's choice: having an abortion or giving birth to a deformed child. Redgrave gives it stature, and Albertson, as her invalid father, turns in an Emmy-nominated performance in his final role. Written by Louisa Burns-Bisogno. Above average. MY DARLING DAUGHTERS' ANNIVERSARY 1973 74 min. Robert Young, Ruth Hussey, Darleen Carr, Darrell Larson, Judy Strangis, Jerry Fogel, Sharon Gless, Colby Chester. Directed by Joseph Pevney. Now that Judge Raleigh has married off his daughters, what's to become of his widower status? Amusing sequel to ALL MY DARLING DAUGHTERS has a couple of decent situtations, adequate performances. Script by John Gay. Average. MY FATHER'S HOUSE 1975 100 min. Cliff Robertson, Robert Preston, Eileen Brennan, Rosemary Forsyth, Michael-James Wixted, Brad Savage, Ruth McDevitt. Directed by Alex Segal. A contemporary drama slowed by repetitious flashbacks, about a heart attack patient (Robertson) whose fond memories of his father (Preston) and his childhood in simpler times make him question the life he has created for his own family. Good cast does its best. Average. MY HUSBAND IS MISSING 1978 100 min. Sally Struthers, Tony Musante, Martine Beswick, James Hong, Jeff David, Nam Loc. Directed by Richard Michaels. Sincere but somber odyssey of a Vietnam war widow who goes to Hanoi seeking word of her MIA husband. Average. MY KIDNAPPER, MY LOVE 1980 100 min. James Stacy, Glynnis O'Connor, Mickey Rooney, Jan Sterling, J.D. Cannon, Richard Venture, Ellen Geer. Directed by Sam Wanamaker. A wealthy, emotionally disturbed girl falls in love with the cripped news-vendor who has kidnapped her (in a plot with his smalltime crook brother) to extort money from her parents. Written by Louie Elias from Oscar Saul's novel THE DARK SIDE OF LOVE. Average. MY MOTHER'S SECRET LIFE 1984 100 min. Loni Anderson, Paul Sorvino, Amanda Wyss, James Sutorius, Sandy McPeak. Directed by Robert Markowitz. She's a high-priced hooker, so her long-forgotten daughter who suddenly turns up on her doorstep discovers. Cold and passionless, and below average. MY OLD MAN 1979 100 min. Kristy McNichol, Warren Oates, Eileen Brennan, Mark Arnold, David Margulies. Directed by John Erman. The saga of a spunky teenage girl and her down-and-out horse trader dad, from a Hemingway short story. Sound familiar? Try Wallace Beery and Jackie Cooper four decades removed. Filmed before as UNDER MY SKIN. Average. MYSTERIOUS ISLAND OF BEAUTIFUL WOMEN 1979 100 min. Steven Keats, Peter Lawford, Clint Walker, Jamie Lyn Bauer, Jayne Kennedy, Kathryn Davis, Rosalind Chao. Directed by Joseph Pevney. Six men fight for survival on a South Sea island populated by a tribe of hostile, bikini-clad lovelies. Unfortunately, nobody plays this one for laughs. Below average. MYSTERIOUS TWO 1982 100 min. John Forsythe, James Stephens, Priscilla Pointer, Robert Pine, Karen Werner, Noah Beery, Vic Tayback. Directed by Gary Sherman. An extraterrestrial twosome comes to Earth on a recruiting mission. This busted sci-fi pilot was called FOLLOW ME IF YOU DARE from its filming several years earlier until the very eve of its first showing. Average. THE MYSTIC WARRIOR 1984 240 min. Robert Beltran, Devon Erickson, Victoria Racimo, Nick Ramus, Ned Romero, Will Sampson, Rion Hunter, Ron Soble. Directed by Richard T. Heffron. This long-incoming adaptation of Ruth Beebe Hill's novel HANTA YO, about a proud band of Sioux Indians and the brave who becomes his people's savior, fell victim to a firestorm of controversy as well as various pressure groups who belatedly questioned the book's authenticity and its Caucasian author's credentials as an authority on Indian culture. Besides, the film is "mystic" to tedium. Average.
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