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PETER FALK, LAURENE LANDON & VICKI FREDERICK 'ALL THE MARBLES'

Vicki Frederick and Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES Year: 1981 Rating: ***1/2

Three dots following a sentence usually means... there's more to come... And when the opposite occurs, that's pretty much that: The first summing up the 1981 Peter Falk road movie …ALL THE MARBLES in which the quirky COLUMBO actor plays Harry, a lowlife manager of a female tag-team wrestling troupe going city to city...

And since these ladies are already at the end of their professional ropes when the movie begins, those dots represent all the work we didn't see, and they really just want those damn marbles already...   

Vicki Frederick and Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES

They referring to sexy and voluptuous jocks Iris and Molly, played by brunette Vicki Frederick and blond Laurene Landon, both sick of the nowhere grungy gigs that Harry, in debt with several bookies, keeps tossing them into: Dive arenas (and one mud wrestling carnival) hardly provide enough bread to keep the trio active, stopping at cheap motels with nothing left over for a fancy dinner, which Harry keeps promising... 

Other than being a lightweight exploitation replacing the popular roller derby genre with wrestling, ALL THE MARBLES is a showcase for the two Amazon beauties yet also highlights the legitimate acting skills of the more prominent Iris...

Vicki Frederick and Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES

In this semi love interest role, much of the plot evolves around Vicki Frederick’s character reluctantly staying on board while, deep down, she's madly in love with her endearingly seedy manager. In that particular aspect, Peter Falk, despite being a great presence, is miscast in a role more suited for a younger Henry Winkler or John Ritter type... 

The last feature by DIRTY DOZEN and KISS ME DEADLY director Robert Aldrich, MARBLES is a fairly decent road picture. A number of scenes are shot through a dilapidated car's murky windshield, passing through a melancholy industrial landscape as the trio discuss their next gig...

Vicki Frederick and Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES

Ultimately pitted against a pair of equally talented wrestlers, backed by a mafia wreck played by Burt Young and henchman Lenny Montana: two genuinely severe guys playing light comedy hoods...

Meanwhile, Aldrich seems more comfortable with Falk's road-roaming monologues than the pivotal wrestling matches, filmed mostly in benign wide shots that, feeling like part of the live audience or a television viewer, it's difficult to get fully into the struggle of the girls, who not only pay their bruised dues but are the only reasons why ALL THE MARBLES is worth checking out... for either sex to either lust after or simply root for.

Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES
Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES with Peter Falk
Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES
Angela Aames in ALL THE MARBLES
Vicki Frederick and Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES with Peter Falk
Burt Young and Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES
Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES
Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES
Vicki Frederick and Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES
Vicki Frederick and Robin Williams on MORK & MINDY with Debra Jo Fondren from Mork vs. the Necrotons
Vicki Frederick in ALL THE MARBLES
Vicki Frederick in ALL THE MARBLES
Vicki Frederick and Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES
Angela Aames in ALL THE MARBLES
Vicki Frederick and Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES
Vicki Frederick and Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES
Vicki Frederick and Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES
Vicki Frederick and Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES
Vicki Frederick and Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES
Vicki Frederick and Peter Falk in ALL THE MARBLES
Vicki Frederick in ALL THE MARBLES
Charlie Dell and Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES
Vicki Frederick  in ALL THE MARBLES
Vicki Frederick  in ALL THE MARBLES
From ALL THE MARBLES
Vicki Frederick and Burt Young in ALL THE MARBLES
Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES
Vicki Frederick in ALL THE MARBLES
Vicki Frederick in ALL THE MARBLES
Vicki Frederick in ALL THE MARBLES
Vicki Frederick in ALL THE MARBLES
Vicki Frederick and Laurene Landon in ALL THE MARBLES

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