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Philip Ahn , Rico Alaniz , Josef von Sternberg    NR (Not Rated)   DVD
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
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Product Details

Product Description

A traveling night club singer gets hired by an American expatriate who runs a casino in Macao and specializes in converting stolen jewelry into cash. Complications ensue when one of her traveling companions turns out to be a cop.

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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
4.1 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
By J. Lovins TOP 50 REVIEWER
RKO Radio Pictures presents "MACAO" (1952) (81 min/B&W) (Fully Restored/Dolby Digitally Remastered) -- A sultry night club singer, a man who has also traveled to many exotic ports and a salesman meet aboard ship on the 45-mile trip from Hong Kong to Macao --- The singer is quickly hired by an American expatriate who runs the biggest casino in Macao and has a thriving business in converting hot jewels into cash --- Her new boss thinks one of her traveling companions is a cop.

The opening of the scenes draws the audience immediately into the action and into a romance between Mitchum and Russell --- The pace is pretty tight in the 81 minute film and besides a tidy plot we are treated to some snappy dialogue including a great closing line (how'd that get by the 1952 censors?) and 3 songs by Miss Russell.

Under the production staff of:
Josef von Sternberg [Director]
Bernard C. Schoenfeld [Screenplay]
Stanley Rubin [Screenplay] (screenplay)
Robert Creighton Williams [Story]
Samuel Bischoff [Executive Producer]
Alex Gottlieb [Producer]
Anthony Collins [Original Music]
Harry J. Wild [Director of Photography]
Samuel E. Beetley [Film Editor]
Robert Golden [Film Editor]

1. Josef von Sternberg [Director]
Date of Birth: 29 May 1894 - Vienna, Austria-Hungary (now Austria)
Date of Death: 22 December 1969 - Hollywood, California

2. Robert Mitchum
Date of Birth: 6 August 1917 - Bridgeport, Connecticut
Date of Death: 1 July 1997 - Santa Barbara, California

3. Janes Russell (aka: Ernestine Jane Geraldine Russell)
Date of birth: 21 June 1921 - Bemidji, Minnesota
Date of Death: Still Living

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This begins with a chase scene: a man in a white suit and white hat running, being chased by some thugs and a sinister Chinese guy with a knife. The man stops and looks back, forgetting Satchel Paige's dictum: "Don't look back, something might be gaining on you." They are in fact only dozen yards or so behind. But he starts running again and miraculously they are now further behind! (Typical chase scene camera work resulting in illogic. But never mind.) He ducks around a corner and hides. One of the thugs pauses, turns and sees him, which gives the man in the white suit a chance to knock him off his feet with a swift uppercut. Then he runs off in the direction he had turned. I was thinking how much he would be ahead of everybody by now if he had just kept running.

Chase scene ends with a knife thrown at him landing in the middle of his back. He's a cop from New York. Dead. Somehow this scene reminded me of something from Bud Abbott and Lou Costello.

Next scene is much better. Jane Russell as Julie Benson is in a cabin room on a passenger ship with a touristy kind of guy who's dancing, if you can call it that. He wants more than dancing. Julie pushes him away. He won't take no for an answer. She takes off a high heel and throws it at him. He ducks and the high heel flies out the window and hits Robert Mitchum who's playing an adventurer named Nick Cochran who just happened to be walking by. Boy meets girl, cute.

After a fashion he rescues the lady in distress. She's a hard talking, sultry babe with attitude. He wants to continue the party after knocking the masher out, but Julie isn't interested. So he takes her and kisses her. Very manly. She still isn't interested and tells him to beat it.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Made For Each Other Aug. 7 2003
Format:VHS Tape
MACAO is a fairly entertaining story of crime and adventure in the Portuguese colony near Hong Kong after World War II. Jane Russell is a singer working for a local gambling boss (Brad Dexter). Robert Mitchum is an American who is on the run and William Bendix is pretending to be a salesman but he really has another more mysterious identity. The best thing about MACAO is the pairing of Russell and Mitchum who seem to be made for each other.
Josef von Sternberg also directed THE BLUE ANGEL.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A MITCHUM AND RUSSELL BLOCKBUSTER! Dec 8 2002
Format:VHS Tape
This film is a potpourri of oriental and expatriate American film noir. It's two major stars (Jane Russell and Robert Mitchum) fit like gloves into their roles. Their attraction to each other melts through the screen. There are also outstanding character role performances (and these are the film's other great strengths) by Brad Dexter (nightclub owner, gem smuggler, etc.) Thomas Gomez, Gloria Grahame, and a special mention of William Bendix, who really added a tight performance to the film.
The plot is one of mistaken identities, a worn-out songstress looking for a place to land and rest, a man who can't go home, and a NYC policeman on a job. The center scene of the film is a Macao nightclub run by a shady and dangerous character. Mitchum and Russell captivate this plot with their on-screen presences.
Josef von Sternberg directed this film, but his stern movie set policies offended all, and especially Mitchum who did something about it (in the video, Jane Russell, still dazzling in old-age with shining silver hair) tells us this amusing anecdote. Nicholas Ray finished up the directorial tasks when von Sternberg was booted out, and their two talents form an interesting combination.
Mitchem and Russell had a preceding hit film called "His Kind of Woman." They probably would have been teamed again after "Macao," but Howard Hughes sold the RKO studio.
All in all, Macao belongs in anyone's collection of classic film noir.
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