ODEON ’61

Once More With Feeling! wrapped up in mid-January, to be replaced by Doctor in Love. This was the fourth in the popular series and the first to not feature Dirk Bogarde (although would return for one final instalment in 1963). Doctor in the House had run for an extraordinary 31 weeks in 1955 at the Odeon and although quietly amusing and engagingly played it is somewhat difficult to fathom its massive popularity sixty years on. Although none of the sequels were anywhere near as popular, they all enjoyed pleasant business, with Doctor in Love (this time with Michael Craig on board) running for 10 weeks into late March of 1961.

SATURDAY NIGHT SUNDAY MORNING
Film of the year for the theatre was Saturday Night and Sunday Morning. Karel Reisz’s adaptation of Alan Sillitoe’s novel was the most popular of the British New Wave film’s in Melbourne, due (I would think) to the career-making performance of Albert Finney. Sexy, and ruggedly handsome, brutish yet fragile he was the antithesis of the British chaps (Bogarde, More, Phillips etc) that usually populated the Odeon’s screens although in terms of those character traits it was Stanley Baker who broke that mold (and the mould festering around British cinema) a few years earlier. Yet without a landmark critical success he would languish as Finney triumphed.

The other notable release was the clever ensemble heist comedy-drama The League of Gentlemen which, if one cared to look, had a great deal of noir-ish, post-war malaise bubbling under its surface. Oddly, it was tossed aside with a poor campaign by the Odeon and was gone in a fortnight.

Of the rest only The Greengage Summer was an excellent showcase for a young Susannah York (although Kenneth More is miscast), The Grass is Greener bombed internationally but with that cast and Stanley Donen directing it is always going to be worth. For unintentional laughs you cannot go past Bogarde as Franz Liszt in Song (or movie) Without End. The Odeon had not had its fill of bizarre Bogarde though, as the next year would prove…

The Odeon’s films of 1961:

WEEK BEGINNINGFEATURESUPPORTSPECIALIMAGENOTE
6/1/61Once More With FeelingFONoneONCE MORE WITH FEELINGas Greater Union
13/1/61Doctor In LoveFONoneDOCTOR IN LOVEas Greater Union
20/1/61Doctor In LoveFONoneas Greater Union
27/1/61Doctor In LoveFONoneas Greater Union
3/2/61Doctor In LoveFONoneas Greater Union
10/2/61Doctor In LoveFONoneas Greater Union
17/2/61Doctor In LoveFONoneas Greater Union
24/2/61Doctor In LoveFONoneas Greater Union
3/3/61Doctor In LoveFONoneas Greater Union
10/3/61Doctor In LoveFONoneas Greater Union
17/3/61Doctor In LoveFONoneas Greater Union
24/3/61Conspiracy Of HeartsFONoneCONSPIRACY OF HEARTSas Greater Union
31/3/61Conspiracy Of HeartsFONoneas Greater Union
7/4/61Conspiracy Of HeartsFONoneas Greater Union
14/4/61Conspiracy Of HeartsFONoneas Greater Union
21/4/61Surprise PackageFONoneSURPRISE PACKAGEas Greater Union
28/4/61Surprise PackageFONoneas Greater Union
5/5/61The League Of GentlemenFONoneLEAGUE OF GENTLEMENas Greater Union
12/5/61
The League Of GentlemenFONoneas Greater Union
19/5/61A French MistressLife Is A CircusNoneA FRENCH MISTRESSas Greater Union
26/5/61A French MistressLife Is A CircusNoneas Greater Union
2/6/61A French MistressLife Is A CircusNoneas Greater Union
9/6/61A French MistressLife Is A CircusNoneas Greater Union
16/6/61Song Without EndFONoneSONG WITHOUT ENDas Greater Union
23/6/61Song Without EndFONoneas Greater Union
30/6/61Song Without EndFONoneas Greater Union
7/7/61Song Without EndFONoneas Greater Union
14/7/61







Song Without EndFONoneas Greater Union
21/07/61The Grass Is GreenerFONoneas Greater Union
28/07/61The Grass Is GreenerFONoneTHE GRASS IS GREENERas Greater Union
4/8/61The Grass Is GreenerFONoneas Greater Union
11/8/61The Grass Is GreenerFONoneas Greater Union
18/8/61The Grass Is GreenerFONoneas Greater Union
25/8/61The Grass Is GreenerFONoneas Greater Union
1/9/61The Pure Hell Of St. TriniansFONonePURE HELL OF ST. TRINIANSas Greater Union
8/9/61The Pure Hell Of St. TriniansFONoneas Greater Union
15/9/61The Pure Hell Of St. TriniansFONoneas Greater Union
22/9/61No Love For JohnnieThe White TrapNoneNO LOVE FOR JOHNNIEas Greater Union
29/9/61No Love For JohnnieThe White TrapNoneas Greater Union
6/10/61The Greengage SummerFONoneTHE GREENGAGE SUMMERas Greater Union
13/10/61The Greengage SummerFONoneas Greater Union
20/10/61Saturday Night And Sunday MorningFONoneSATURDAY NIGHT SUNDAY MORNINGas Greater Union
27/10/61Saturday Night And Sunday MorningFONoneas Greater Union
3/11/61Saturday Night And Sunday MorningFONoneas Greater Union
10/11/61Saturday Night And Sunday MorningFONoneas Greater Union
17/11/61Saturday Night And Sunday MorningFONoneas Greater Union
24/11/61Saturday Night And Sunday MorningFONoneas Greater Union
1/12/61Saturday Night And Sunday MorningOffbeatNoneas Greater Union
8/12/61Five Golden HoursI Only ArskedNone5 GOLDEN HOURSas Greater Union
15/12/61Five Golden HoursI Only ArskedNoneas Greater Union
22/12/61Very Important PersonThe Man Who Was NobodyNoneVERY IMPORTANT PERSONas Greater Union
29/12/61Very Important PersonThe Man Who Was NobodyNoneas Greater Union

The complete screening schedule of the Odeon Theatre (1960-1978):

YEAR19601961196219631964
YEAR19651966196719681969
YEAR19701971197219731974
YEAR1975197619771978

 

 

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