JackFavell

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Everything posted by JackFavell

  1. JackFavell

    The Annual FrankGrimes Torture Thread

    Bonjour Monsieur! c'est magnifique to talk to you.
  2. JackFavell

    The Annual FrankGrimes Torture Thread

    See? You WERE waiting for us to torture you! How's it going? Did you go MIA too? I bet it was sports related.
  3. JackFavell

    The Annual FrankGrimes Torture Thread

    Perhaps Frankie is waiting for some torture. Let's talk about religious symbolism in classic film, or perhaps our favorite Lassie Greer Garson movies? McLintock anyone? Wagon Master? How about all four?
  4. JackFavell

    RAMBLES Part II

    *Jacks,* *The same with me. My embarrassment comes from the fact that I've seen LoA numerous times prior to 2006, most of those on the big screen.* *But it didn't click with me until MrCutter and I were watching it on TCM back in 2006. They had a number of Ford westerns on that winter and we had been watching them so that probably helped!* I was embarrassed too, because I've seen LofA so many times myself. That's why I thought maybe I was stating the obvious. I think it's a credit to Lean's style that we never really noticed before, that we get so caught up in the action that we never see the workings of it.
  5. JackFavell

    The Annual FrankGrimes Torture Thread

    *Howdy, Denver -- By the way, I loved your "double post" post.* I can't leave a space like that! I like to fill it up with something. *White Zombie (1932) - This one is soooo creepy.* *I loved Bela but I felt the film was plodding.* I haven't seen it for a long time, so the plodding has fallen away and left me with images of power. I remember finding this one almost unbearable, story wise. *Wow! Jean does have a "Blanche" deal going on with her! I would have never made that comparison. And Blanche would scream "Assassin!"* I watched it twice in a month recently, which really brought forward parts of the plot that always mystified me when I was younger, and I suddenly realized that she was just like Blanche.... who I've always sympathized with. In this one you can sympathize, but not tolerate in her position. Gosh, Maggie Smith was great! I can't think of another actress who could have played this role - she's deluded and magnificent and strange and wonderful and messed up badly. Her need to shape someone into a do-over of herself is really potent and awful. You can see why her 'little girls' are so taken with her and her dreamy, romantic but dangerous ideals. And she's beautiful too. I forgot she was ever that pretty. She sets up competition without meaning to, or at least not on a conscious level. She needed to be taken down. I just feel she ruined so many lives, most of all Sandy, the girl who took her down...because Sandy loved her too. The movie sets up sympathy for Miss Brodie, but also shows how she was a destroyer. Sandy was too, but for all the right reasons, she had to. I love the other characters too. Gordon Jackson is one of my favorite British character actors. He can get a huge amount out of a tiny little role. Robert Stephens was perfect - He reminded me of Dennis Price, or David Farrar - sexy and smarmy in a way that only British men can be. Celia Johnson's Miss McKay is a lesson in acting. Wow. Her scenes with Smith crackle and bite. As good as some of the other scenes are, those are the ones that are overpowering. It's quite a brilliant film. It does almost everything right including the final confrontation between them. Don't ever cross Miss McKay. She'll wait for an opportunity and take you down in the end. (Ro!) hahahahahahaha! u. *I agree with you, the film is very slow going. It's wonderfully moody thanks to Veidt and the visuals, though.* You have to keep watching for Veidt. Some of the best parts are simply shadows and light. *I'm learning that I do not like the early A&C. There is way too much singing involved. I felt as if this film was more about the Andrews Sisters than A&C. The later films are more about Bud and Lou.* I can see that. The studios were hedging their bets. I haven't watched them for a long time. Funny how it worked the opposite for Bud and Lou than it did for the Marx Bros. The Marxes started out zanier, with whole movies to themselves, and later the studios kept sticking in more and more plot and music. *I loved it! It's everything that's wonderful about Preston Sturges.* I agree. I love Ella Raines in this one too. Her scenes where she's in a quandary and trying to explain herself to the boyfriend are sweetly hilarious. And the best part of the movie, the part I never miss is Woodrow's speech to the crowds... he tells them he isn't worthy of their adoration, but they think he's just being modest! It's hysterical and a very potent and funny exposure of how political trickery is so ingrained in American culture. *It's my least favorite of the three, namely because it's the most serious of the three. All together, the trilogy is sensational, though. It really is a celebration of life.* Yes, I'd agree with that. It's the most sad in some ways. There are a lot of strings to untangle here, and they aren't successfully pulled apart. It's like real life, it doesn't always come out the way we like it in the end. Sometimes things stay unresolved and we have regrets... even when we don't want them, think we've avoided them. And something of the free spiritedness of the first two films is lost here, even though the quality of the film is better due to the time it was made. I like the soaring messy spirit of the first two films best. *I can't say that I've seen a crazier film. It's wild! Huston is a force of nature. The negative for me was that it's such a tough watch. It's a grinder.* OK. I found Virginia Bruce to be quite good, which kept me interested. And at first I thought Huston was AWFUL. I've never thought that before! But he pulled through in the end. But really West of Zanzibar was so much better. *I do love Kim and sex comedies. But I found this to be charming. It's really an "Audrey Hepburn" kind of film.* Interesting. I may have to watch this one now. *I agree. This is the best of the films since Maisie, the first film.* How can you not like a movie that has Slapsie Maxie Rosenbloom AND Rags Ragland in it? AND Virginia O'Brien? And Jack LaRue? I thought Ann Sothern and George Murphy really sparked a bit, I'm not a huge George Murphy fan, but in this one he's good. There are about 3 movies of his I really like. *That Maggie sure knew her stuff! I can see why you'd like this one.* Why do you think I'd like it? Why did you like it? *That's almost exactly how I felt about the film. It just never captured me, even though I like O'Brien.* I watched it longer than I thought I would, if nothing but to see how O'Brien ended up. *No, you ranked it right. I was worn out by all of the ups and downs. It felt like Forrest Gump of the Depression Era!* It's got a lot of good reviews at the other site, a lot of fans who are into pre-codes. I have to say, you hit on the head why it wasn't as thrilling to me. I do like Barthelmess, and I think the people who are gaga for this movie are his fans, who wanted to see him in a decent talkie. His career was very slapdash after sound came in. For me, it was a little bit overdone, I didn't quite believe the ups and then the downs, they seemed contrived. *You described it perfectly. It really is ludicrous, but the passion from Marlene is good.* I can't help it, I am a big Marlene fan and I even like Ray Milland, Together they are _good._ I can't explain why I like it other than that. Ray's humor, and Marlene's kitsch. It's a pure guilty pleasure and I love it. It's fun, that's all. *I liked it much more than I thought I would.* Same here, I feel that the performers take it seriously when all reason says not to. Some movies just work that way - they shouldn't be good but they are thanks to actors who give their all, while retaining a light touch. It works for me. Love the color and style of it too. *It's fascinating! It really played with my emotions.* YES! You think one thing then find yourself coming down on a different side, and then back again. I'm glad you liked it. *Oh, yeah. I definitely saw "Chiquita". I didn't like this comedy as much as the other Alec comedies I have seen, but it's still quite good.* It seems a rung down from the others for me, and a little bit long, but it's enjoyable and I like the kind of cracked way that a little kid brings them down. Actually, it's their own fear that takes them down... if they hadn't gone after that last statue, they would have gotten away with it. And I really love Alec Guinness' character. This little mild mannered fellow, scheming and plotting in the back of his head for years. There's something satisfying about the heist - how they all underestimate him, think him foolish and frumpy and womanish. It makes you WANT him to take the gold if only for spite against his bosses and the people who look down on him. *A Connecticut Yankee - I REALLY liked this one far more than I thought I would.* *What did you like about it?* I've only seen other versions - where a regular normal guy goes back in time. I like the story, but so what if a normal fellow like Bing Crosby goes back? Then it's just unusual. For it to be Will Rogers, now THAT is funny. I like Twain and Rogers together. They have the same sensibility. I know some Twain fans don't like the film. Rogers is so incongruous, it just added to the humor of it for me, and I felt this was close to Rogers' humor - his own way of poking fun at what was happening around him. Topical. He's so American here in comparison, it makes me laugh. And he gets to rope and ride. I actually liked that they loosened up the story a bit, I liked the radio framework, though I know some don't. I know some people who love Will Rogers think this is a terrible movie, maybe that's why I liked it better than I thought I would. I had low expectations of it and it exceeded them. I find it funny and silly, and a lot of fun. I also like Myrna and Maureen, though they don't have the greatest roles. They are two of my favorite actresses. *David Wayne! It's your guy! He's exceptional in the film, too. I do like Susan Slept Here more. But this one was all right.* He's a terrific actor. I've come to appreciate him more and more over the years, He's got great comic timing and yet he can also be very sensitive, touching. He knows when to give something a little touch of humanity or seriousnessor depth. He can even do real characters and accents, like in The Three Faces of Eve or The Cop and the Anthem. His characters even in comedy are not just caricatures. I also have to say I don't like seeing swinger Frankie tamed by a little girl. It just feels a little bit wrong to me. I'm not crazy about the background story, with her being an actress. I'd love to know what MissG thinks of this movie, whether she likes it or not. I don't think she likes Celeste Holm, so I wonder about how she feels about this movie.... *You are right! I thought the scenes with Greta and Ramon were sizzling. Very "silent film".* I thought you might like the sexiness of it. It is quite steamy at times. I like these kind of movies that pit a man against his country or honor and a woman on the other side. Yes, it's a very 'silent film' contrivance and it can be silly, but I don't care. A lot of pre-codes had this kind of plot as well, The romance of it is something I like very much. When someone who uses emotion to gain information and then gets THEIR emotions tangled up, I eat that up with a spoon. *I would have guessed you liked this film since it's episodic. My favorite was easily W.C. Fields' story. That was hilarious.* That one is good too. Ha! How many of us would love to do that! *I pretty much enjoyed it. You are right, this is not a film that will rank highly with me but I still like it enough. It's very sweet and loving.* I loved this one, and the late forties version. Something about it gets me. *Fooled ya!* You dog. Are you trying to pull a fast one, liking a movie that we all know you should hate? *This time, I loved Bette's selfishness. She's a cyclone!* She really is. I like the dynamic between Bette and Olivia. I also like how Dennis Morgan isn't a good guy. *I don't like biopics, but this one was all right. Ralph was wonderful. Hume was terrific!* Oh god. I'm going to cry thinking about him. his cough. *And it has Olivier. Ugh! Flora is great, though.* Yes, but to me, Bette is the better Queen Elizabeth. *A SPOILER'S FACE* *Fantastic! That's a terrific analysis. I thought the Swedish version was better at showing this because of the ending.* I thought they were about equal at showing her inner turmoil in the landscape. *Excellent! Boy, you're really capturing a lot of this film. And you just touched on why I prefer the ending to the Swedish film. It's not about Anna finding everything in life, it's about her finding herself. The Hollywood version has Anna getting it all. American audiences do prefer this, of course.* I can see that being preferable. But I still thought it was too long getting to that point. It really dragged after the rescue for me. Just get on the boat and go. That could have been wrapped up in seconds. We didn't need a reminder of the doctor leaving, or the hospital scene. *I agree with that. The Hollywood version is darker. They pull the "Devil" card!* I loved that. Yes, I certainly like the boy in the Swedish version more. That goes without saying! For sure. *The Hollywood version has much richer characters. The characters are mostly bland in the Swedish version. The Hollywood version uses the characters to bring forth a lot of humor, too. The Swedish version is humorless.* yes, but it was sweeter in a more natural way. *Nothing comes close to Veidt in the Swedish version. He really is playing the "Devil". The Swedish is much more straightforward. There's no broad strokes or flourishes. It's a straight story.* Yes, but very well done. I'd call it more of a drama than a noir. A Woman's Face MGM started out with a lot of noir. That's why the ending disappointed you. It ended in the bright light. It would have been better to retain a little of the feeling of the beginning. I thought it might be good if Anna was able to work with those who were disfigured, like she was. *I agree with all of that. This is why I say the Hollywood is much more dramatic. The Swedish version lacks all the pizazz that Hollywood offers up. And I do prefer the Hollywood version, even with my liking the Swedish ending more.* They both were worth watching. Just very different approaches. *I liked the Swedish version of the sleigh scene, taking place at night. I may not be remembering the American version, but didn't it take place in the daylight? I would have chosen night time again for the remake.* *I don't remember, either!* Maybe Laffite remembers. Didn't the MGM picture have the sleigh ride as a separate section, with the dramatic peak on a ski lift? That also worked better for me. It made Veidt seem crueler, that he would try again. And it was much more exciting. *I liked the Swedish ending. As I mentioned before, I think it was all about her finding herself as a person. It wasn't about finding love and having everything be perfect for her. That's the "tidy bow" I speak of. I just love the finish on the ship. It's almost as if Ingrid is going from A Woman's Face to The Inn of the Sixth Happiness.* I totally see that. I liked that, with the soaring bird overhead. *I also prefer Joan to Ingrid in this role. Joan is much more dramatic, and it works in the film. I also find her much more believable in playing this kind of character. When Joan is angry and hateful, I buy it. When Ingrid is, I don't. Ingrid is the woman I'm always looking to protect. I never think I need to protect Joan!* I agree. But they both had a good fix on the character. For me, Joan's was more about the darkness in her character, and Ingrid's was more about her goodness slwoly blossoming. Making it two totally different stories. I'm glad you referred me to the Swedish one. It was well worth seeing.
  6. JackFavell

    RAMBLES Part II

    *of course i had to jump in because until now, i thought i was the only one to see the (at least visual) kinship between Lean and Ford. in fact, no other director has ever come as close to Ford as Lean does when it comes the use of space and landscape to both put a character in context with his world, and to express his own inner self or conflicts. And not just landscape, both men use objects and their placement in relation to the humans in a scene in very similar ways. Objects "witness" what a character is experiencing, or they reinforce what is happening to them. Lamps, flowers, lights in windows, and other things are both used very similarly by the two men.* I feel kind of stupid for not noticing before all the similarities. I know I've seen Lawrence about 50 times, I always watch it when it's on, and it was the very first VHS tape I ever bought. I don't really THINK when it's on, just let it sweep over me. At least, I don't think about the film-making aspects of it. I love what you say...well, first about how the space and landscape expresses the inner conflicts of the character, but also about how objects and their placement inform a scene or a character as well. I never really noticed that! I guess with Lean (as well as Ford) I was just swept away by the beauty and the stories, and never really compared him to anyone else or saw a connection or paid attention to the small detail. Lean seems so different, so much his own man that I didn't stop to realize he might have learned from others. And I believe he was VERY much into movies as a young man, so it makes sense that as he grew up, he would absorb like a sponge from the greatest artists and film-makers. Of course, I see now that similarity in object placement, now that you mentioned it. *I am quite sure there was high regard between them for each one's work.* I wasn't sure, but I would sense a kinship, certainly. *BRILLIANT screencap comparisons...how on earth did you dig them up? Did you take out the DVDs and capture them or did you find them on the internet?* I wish I could have shown more of the ones that really caught my eye - but I don't have LofA on disc. I had to pick and choose from the internet, so I did a lot of searching for the particular shots that struck me. There are more I noticed that I simply couldn't find pictures of, which is a shame. *Lawrence achieves many things that Cheyenne Autumn ought to have done and might have had Ford been in his prime---and had no studio interference. The situations were quite similar, what Britain was after and what the U.S. Government was after vs. the indigenous peoples.* Now you know, I NEVER really thought about it, but that's a GREAT comparison! Yes, I think THAT is what I brought away with me from watching LofA, that the two men had a similar world view, not just that they used some framing techniques in common. Their similar, complex view of the military is quite interesting. I would almost say that Lean picked up where Ford left off, as if the one man was reincarnated into the other. Each man in his own time taking the moral questions of the day and turning them into artwork that is unsurpassed. *Ha.. he DOES seem to pop up all over the place, doesn't he? And that is a lovely comparison young'un. I imagine that you are right at least based only on some of the shots you posted. I know very little of Lean (and not a WHOLE lot about Ford other than the films I have watched for him) but I am sure he had an influence on many directors who came after him.. and for a film like this one that relied SO heavily on the kinds of images you posted.. I bet Lean did look back to some of what Ford had already done.. if only for a frame of reference.* Yes, I don't mean to imply that Lean was simply copying. I find him wholely himself in his film-making. More likely he absorbed the placement, the framing techniques and the relations between landscape and man at some point, so it came out of him organically, rather than as a straightforward copy. *Whether or not that is true.. I will rely on you more learned folk to figure. But for my part.. I will just say that this is one of the few "classic" films I have actually had the pleasure of seeing on the big screen. I saw it once way back in the VERY early 80's and then again after it had some sort of restoration, I think.. if I remember right.. later in the 80's again. And BOY oh boy.. all I can say is LofA is such a visual experience all on its own.. just watching it for the way it LOOKS is almost as worthwhile as the story itself.* Ro - you are so LUCKY! I really love this movie, I think you all know I miss really wide open vistas, and this one has the widest open ones I can think of! I can't even imagine seeing this one on the big screen. It must be quite something, and I'm sure I would sink down into it like a dream. It's a favorite of mine, a little less straightforward than Lean's *Bridge on the River Kwai*, which I also just watched. Interesting that he almost always picked stories in which the environment effected change on his characters, and not always in the most obvious ways (and not always the most obvious environment, as in *Dr. Zhivago*, where the political is at odds with the natural). *Jacks,* *Your post stirred something in my memory and it took awhile to find it.* *But I wrote this in a thread back in 2006:* *Lest anyone think I'm crazy about David Lean, watch "LoA" again. Those wonderful wide shots of the deserts and the treks across them and even the battle scenes all have that Ford influence.* *http://forums.tcm.com/thread.jspa?threadID=78833&start=50&tstart=0* *Am glad that others see it, too and I'm not crazy!* Lynn, I am so relieved that someone else had thought of it too! I was shocked when it came to me, epiphany style, and then I thought about it and was almost hesitant to post.... I wasn't sure if I was grasping at straws a little. But if you saw it too, I KNOW it was there. Glad to know I was on the right track! Thanks for the confirmation. Whew! *I'm afraid I can't comment on your comparison, Jackie. I've yet to see Lawrence of Arabia. I'm hoping to do so at some point this year, though.* I can't WAIT for you to see it, Frank. I imagine you are doing Lean in order? At least generally speaking? It must be coming up next for you. Edited by: JackFavell on Mar 6, 2014 8:00 AM Edited by: JackFavell on Mar 6, 2014 8:02 AM
  7. JackFavell

    RAMBLES Part II

    I guess one desert is like another, eh? It just struck me that there were a lot of crossovers between the two directors in Lawrence, including a lineup of Arab faces, just as Ford used Native American faces placed just so in his frame. Also, there was a scene I wish I could have taken a screencap from, where Howitat men were lined up on top of a ridge above Lawrence, that I swear came right out of Fort Apache.
  8. JackFavell

    The Annual FrankGrimes Torture Thread

    Buttertea - I just realized that I never replied you your post earlier on! *Wendy, I would have answered you when you replied to me first, but my phone decided to blow up and die on me (quite literally), so I have been without a phone for two days and that is usually how I get on here, so I had to order one through the mail overnight.* Sorry bout your phone! Dang! Those things are expensive too. *Pffttt, he would NEVER watch a musical. I mean, maybe if we tied him to a chair and put duct tape over his mouth, would he watch it, but that would just be mean, and we are sweet and innocent, right? Heehee! * I was just thinking he should have to watch musicals one of these days... I was watching Oliver! the other morning and thinking how much he would enjoy that one... musical AND Charles Dickens as well.... tee heee. Let's get the rope and the chair.... *OH, i definitely agree. Their dramas are among my top favorites!* Mine too. The 1935 day yesterday blew my mind, all those great movies, a lot were MGM ones. *You know, I've been watching more and more silents and I have realized that the strangest ones come from MGM. It is hardly believable. I saw Greed not too long ago and was astounded by the darkness displayed by Stroheim, but then he was quite known to be a free spirit with his filmmaking. I was also highly impressed with Zasu Pitts and was never really noticed her before that. I mean I had seen her in some other things, but her performance was pretty solid!* Isn't it crazy? She's AMAZING, especially if you've only seen her goofier lightheaded characters. Have you seen Lazybones? You HAVE to see it Tea. It's so good, and she's really great. I can't believe you saw Greed.... I can barely get through it, though parts of it are really fascinating. It's just so black and cynical. *Flesh and the Devil (1926) also comes to mind as really depressing and dark even for MGM silents. It was just a weird one all around. I don't like the ending to it.* I LOVE *Flesh and the Devil!* I like everything, the ending, all of it. It certainly is dark, but the ending with the two friends is redeeming. *I saw The Mortal Storm before I ever saw Escape and I clearly remember my reaction to the storyline. I was really surprised that they even attempted it in the 30's and it's also another one that ends on a really depressing note. Did you notice that the word, "Jew" was never used in the film? My mother caught that at the end of the movie (she is obsessed with anything having to do with World War 2 and has always tried to figure out Hitler. You should see her book collection. geee.) and it baffled me when I thought back on it. I actually watched it again, because I really didn't understand some scenes between Sullavan and Young.* And I can totally see that. That relationship is complex, the scene is unusual and you think it's going to go one way but ends up taking another route. So it's confusing. Those scenes with Young are my favorites now, but I did not like it at all when I was younger. I think they also don't say 'Nazi' or 'German' either. There was a German envoy in Hollywood at the time, and he had gained such control over the studios that they all just basically kowtowed to his wishes, and they removed all traces of WHERE the story was supposed to take place. I just read that recently. *Mrs. Miniver is also an excellent example of wartime propaganda. Just that one scene with Greer and the german pilot grabs my fullest attention. The dialogue between them and their body language; it just all seemed so real and scary. But they wanted to put that message in your head. It's kind of manipulative when you think about it. Now I'm not saying that I am at all against the movie. It is one of my favorites, but the message from it, just hits you in the face.* I agree. I think it's also pretty dark that they killed a main character, a young person. *Please tell me you're being sarcastic with The Dorian Gray comment. Heehee! Poor Angela!* Yes,ma'am that was sarcasm! *I have mixed feelings about Dore Schary when he came after Papa Mayer. He really empowered the studio with a strategy that was completely the opposite of Mayer, even the musicals were different, not necessarily in a bad way, just different. You can tell when you watch films like Love Me or Leave Me, just how different the style and flow of the film is.* I used to hate Dore Schary. I hated that he tried to take MGM to a darker place. I felt he ruined the studio. Lately I've been appreciating the movies made at that time more. *Not at all, I was really just picking on Frankie, but I didn't want anyone to give up hope on MGM, because their movies are so magical. They can instantly cheer you up on a bad day! * I agree. I really need my Singin in the Rain, and Meet Me in St. Louis fix occasionally! This is one of my favorite musical numbers, even though it isn't a great film - it always makes me happy: *A Woman's Face is definitely interesting. Please nobody hate me for saying this, but I am not a fan of Joan Crawford, so it was really hard for me to sit through this one and not think on a biased level, but i have been REALLY trying to get passed it and like her, by watching more of her films. And this one in particular was excrutiatingly dark. It's a frustrating story, but I do have to say that I was fairly impressed with Crawford's ability to withstand "ugly" makeup in the first half of the film. That surprised me.* No hate here! Don't worry. I know, it's so uncharacteristic for Crawford. And I don't put it on my GREAT movies list, but I find it to be an extraordinary performance and really interesting to watch. That's why it's a favorite for me, it's so different. I love how the outer affects the inner in this film.
  9. JackFavell

    The Annual FrankGrimes Torture Thread

    A SPOILER'S FACE I just watched the Ingrid version of *A Woman's Face*. It was very very different I thought, but it did bring back to me the depth of the story which I liked so much in the first place. I really REALLY liked (in both films) the way the waterfall was a symbol of her inner turmoil. I also really enjoyed how her new face changes her inner landscape. I think that both movies capture something kind of intangible...when she had an ugly face, she saw, or thought she saw ugly feelings in those around her. Once that was gone, she started to see the loving instead, and that acted on her in a totally different way than anything ever had. She herself started to be kind, to love herself and others. When she responded (in the MGM movie) to Torsten's love of her, it was something new and made her feel good. THAT was what moved her in the film. Later when she saw others who loved far more than Torsten, she was changed and began to see him for what he was. In the Swedish movie, there are very few closeups, which made the moment when the little boy hugged and kissed her quite momentous - there was a huge gorgeous closeup of Ingrid, shocked,by the show of love. She quickly reached up to her face as if to wipe it off, or keep it from her, but it burned her, it got inside her.... into her soul...and then she gave in to emotion. I don't remember anything as striking in the MGM film, but I haven't seen it for a while. I liked the twistedness of the MGM story much MUCH more than the Swedish one. Combining the two sets of characters the way they did really put the story on a little bit higher plane, a more complex level for me. However, I liked the little boy in the Swedish film WAAAAAY more, and also the grandfather and Emma were charming. I liked Osa Massen far more than the blackmailed woman in the Swedish film, because she added some more of that twistedness to her character, not good, not bad. I did like the Swedish blackmailed woman, just not as much.Things and people were a lot more black and white in the Swedish film - for instance, Ingrid could truly hate and despise Torsten - which the combining of characters really jumbled up (to my delight) in the American film. And of course, Veidt was brilliant, none of the characters or actors even touched the hem of his silk smoking jacket. I also did NOT like Ingrid's makeup as much as Joan's... and I didn't quite feel Ingrid was as sensitive to her deformity as Joan was. That doesn't mean she didn't do an excellent job. I felt that the straightforward telling of the story really hurt the Swedish version, though the film was still surprisingly good. They jumped right in and let everything come out right at the start. It surprised me, and though it worked, I LOVE the way the MGM writers twisted up the beginning, making it far more of a mystery at first...you aren't quite sure of what's going on. They let little pieces of the pie come together slowly. I I felt the Swedes should have ended it a little sooner as well, that draggy ending with her seeing the 'angel' in the hospital and then going to the doctor could have been told in 2 minimal scenes, instead of taking 15 minutes. I liked the Swedish version of the sleigh scene, taking place at night. I may not be remembering the American version, but didn't it take place in the daylight? I would have chosen night time again for the remake. Both films copped out on the ending. Perhaps there was no perfect resolution for such a striking dilemma. At least, not at that time. I felt the Swedish film caught a little bit of a class situation at the end - there was NO WAY she could go with Harald, they made it perfectly clear. At least in the American version, she was allowed to move on and have the hope of a happy life, because she redeemed herself with her good acts.... paid for her sins. I don't know how one would resolve this story - perhaps having her bow out by her own choice, as she did in the Swedish version, but more quickly? to just disappear, a la *I Am a Fugitive From a Chain Gang*.... but I feel that's too harsh for her character to bear. It doesn't feel quite right either. Most of all, I really felt Joan captured something deep and tormented in the character. I loved how she hid herself. I really felt her pain, even when she was being cruel at the beginning. She really tortured HERSELF. Both were excellent, and Ingrid's character got to go a little deeper into a terribly harsh background. But I find Crawford deeply fascinating in the American film. I truly like her better. I did like how Ingrid's character changed very very slowly, but maybe they both did, I can't remember quite as well as I would like to. Changing Torsten to a love interest helped heighten the psychology and the fight within. I never thought I'd say I liked Joan better than Ingrid in all my life, but I felt Joan brought a more bitter, natural edge, with complete sympathetic understanding of this woman's mind and heart, even at her worst. She totally captured the character. Edited by: JackFavell on Mar 4, 2014 3:54 PM Edited by: JackFavell on Mar 4, 2014 3:57 PM
  10. JackFavell

    The Annual FrankGrimes Torture Thread

    No, I didn't get to the Ingrid version yet. I thought you were listing the Joan one for some reason. I tried to watch the other day, but got interrupted about ten times, so I put it off. and then promptly forgot to watch it. I think Ro's head would explode if she watched jean brodie.
  11. JackFavell

    The Annual FrankGrimes Torture Thread

    And you said I shouldn't second guess myself.....
  12. JackFavell

    The Annual FrankGrimes Torture Thread

    double post Edited by: JackFavell on Mar 4, 2014 11:16 AM
  13. JackFavell

    The Annual FrankGrimes Torture Thread

    My list. Cesar Life With Father Hobson's Choice A Woman's Face Hail the Conquering Hero The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie Golden Earrings State Fair White Zombie The Lavender Hill Mob A Connecticut Yankee Heroes for Sale If I Had a Million The Blue Angel Ringside Maisie The Last Time I Saw Paris The Last Mile Hands of Orlac Buck Privates Kongo Fire Over England Mata Hari In This Our Life Sunrise at Campobello 711 Ocean Drive The Tender Trap Tonight and Every Night
  14. JackFavell

    The Annual FrankGrimes Torture Thread

    Chris, You are right! I did get them mixed. My bad. So forget what I said!
  15. JackFavell

    RAMBLES Part II

    Watching *Lawrence of Arabia* the other day, I was struck by something so obvious, you may all laugh at me for even posting this. For me it was a revelation. Halfway through the first half of the film, Lawrence is sitting thinking on the ground, in the background is a low lying bluff of cliffs. It's so remote that it is veiled in mist or cloud cover, but I could make out a flat topped ridge behind him. He says, "Aqaba.". He stands and looks out over the desert as excitement overtakes him. The ridge behind him got me excited, because all I could think of was John Ford. I wish I had a screen cap from the scene, but I don't own the movie. I suddenly became aware that Lean's Arabian desert was very much like Ford's Monument Valley and other locations that Ford used. It completely makes sense, both men were artists, both loved the landscape and the earth, and both men had something interesting to say about the military, imperialism, and men's souls, and both really understood man's cosmic place in the universe. Plus a lot of other things. They aren't that far removed from one another. So on I watched as the battle of Aqaba took place, and more and more I saw flashes of Ford in each composition. This section of Lawrence of Arabia is filled with subtle Ford textures and moments. I don't know that Lean actually studied Ford, or that he formed his compositions because of Ford. But it's a strange coincidence if he did not, right down to his use of red in battle. I think Lean possibly took from Ford and made the compositions his own, expanding or refining to suit his own purposes. Here are just a few shots that suddenly seemed infused with Fordian meaning (click on the photos to see the side by side comparisons): Edited by: JackFavell on Mar 4, 2014 10:52 AM
  16. JackFavell

    The Annual FrankGrimes Torture Thread

    Wow, you guys, you got me to really want to see Split Second. I love Odds Against Tomorrow and everything else you said really got me into it. Paul Kelly has been turning up for me lately too. I think he's blandly rugged looking, the jawline is all that sets him apart....but his voice is quite distinctive. I find I like him a lot as an actor, even though I know he murdered someone in real life. Weird.
  17. JackFavell

    The Annual FrankGrimes Torture Thread

    *The Blue Angel* (1930) - I don't think I have to say why. *White Zombie* (1932) - This one is soooo creepy. *The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie* (1969) - I am taking a big risk putting this one so high, but I remembered how much you like Tennessee Williams and this movie reminds me of Streetcar. It's got all sorts of messy emotions and screwed up motives. If you can get past it's Britishness, I think you'd rate it highly. But can you.....? *The Hands of Orlac* (1924) - this would have rated higher but it's tremendously slow moving and they could have cut out a lot of the film without losing the plot. I rated it higher than I feel it deserves or than I probably should have, because the idea is so good, and some of the scenes really stick with you. *Buck Privates* (1941) - you seem to really enjoy A&C and this one is early on for them. Some great schtick. *Hail the Conquering Hero* (1944) - I am gambling on this one too. When I first saw this one, it really fell flat for me in comparison with the other Sturges films. I now find it creeping up the list again. I think you liked it, but didn't LOVE it. *Cesar* (1936) - Hard to say whether this one came in higher for you. I rank it here, figuring you will go for the way it sees all sides. Again, I find it hard to rank this separately from the others in the series. *Kongo* - really really bizarre,It starts out way over the top but gets you in the finale. I'm hoping you'll like it, even though it's pretty much a rip off of another movie. It isn't as good, but has it's own charms. Walter Huston being one of them and a good leading lady + the other girl is pretty. *Operator 13* - it's Hitch, and I haven't seen it. Even less than stellar Hitch is interesting. *The Notorious Landlady* - I've never seen it, but you have been pretty good with sex comedies and Kim. *Ringside Maisie* - I think this is one of the better Maisies, I like the milieu. They kind of dip down for a while but this one marks an upswing in the series for me. Good cast. *Hobson's Choice* - I am really not sure with this one, but I will take a guess that you like the love story at the center. *711 Ocean Drive* - I've only seen part of this one. An OK movie, sort of cheap procedural in feel even though it's not a police drama. Edmund O'Brien is always fun to watch. Nothing special but an easy watch. *Split Second* - I haven't seen it but you discussed it so I am ranking it. *Heroes for Sale* - a really good unknown movie, with a super performance by Barthelmess. Dark. I should have rated it higher I think now. *Golden Earrings* (1948) - I enjoy this one so much, and I can't figure out why. It's patently ridiculous, so kitschy it works. I think you'd like it *for it's humor.* *The Last Time I Saw Paris* - this one goes in the middle because I am just totally unsure - it's either a love or a hate. *The Last Mile* - Very good performance by Mickey, this is one of my favorite of his later films. I think you'd like seeing the grit of it, and his really different performance. *The Lavender Hill Mob* - This is my least favorite of the Ealing comedies, but it has a lot to recommend it and it's quite suspenseful in the end. Did you spot Audrey Hepburn in a bit part? *A Connecticut Yankee* - I REALLY liked this one far more than I thought I would. *The Tender Trap* - This one is meh for me, I like Susan Slept Here better. But you tend to like these stories a bit better than I do. Or maybe you hated it. Everyone is good but who cares? David Wayne is good as always. *A Woman's Face* - you already made it clear that it was not your cup of tea. *Mata Hari* - Talk about kitschy! I think you'll actually like this one in spite of it's more ridiculous aspects. *If I Had a Million* - Some of the stories are just great but not all - my personal favorites are Charles Laughton (hahahahaha, it makes me laugh just thinking about it), The streetwalker story, and George Raft's section, where I think George does some of his best acting. *State Fair* - I have missed recording this every single time it's been on, but I did see part of it once - I saw the end. I really loved what I saw, but this is not your kind of story. *Life With Father* - This isn't you. I love it, but I can't get you and it into the same space, so I am placing it low. *In This Our Life* - I think you won't like the more potboiler aspects of this one, but I could be way off. This one might come in high for you because of those family situations and bad girl/good girl storyline. But I don't think so. I think you'll think it's unpleasant. *Sunrise at Campobello* - It's a really good movie but I don't think it will do much for you. Ralph never gave a better performance though. Stagey and perhaps you'll think it's long. *Fire Over England* - wow, It has Viv, but it's costume, British, and she's not in it much. The more I look at my rankings, the more I think I completely screwed them up. The rest I haven't seen and don't know enough about to rank. Edited by: JackFavell on Mar 4, 2014 8:11 AM
  18. JackFavell

    RAMBLES Part II

    Laffite, I just want you to know, I love what you wrote about Some Came Running, and about his 'quasi' religious experience, his ability to view himself from above the scene a bit. I think you are right that he doesn't see her anymore as just a dog or a lead weight, and maybe to see she might be good for him. That all sounds exactly spot on to me, the way I see the movie. don't think he could ever love her the way she loves him, but I think he is coming to love her selflessness, and is trying to take a lesson from it.
  19. JackFavell

    The Annual FrankGrimes Torture Thread

    Thanks, M'Ava for jumping in. Oh Bette is so gloriously selfish in In This Our Life. And to be so when Olivia de Havilland is around is even more incredible. Her good makes Bette's bad worse. I like weak Dennis Morgan here. Since we just talked about weak Dennis in Kitty Foyle yesterday.
  20. JackFavell

    The Annual FrankGrimes Torture Thread

    *Your answers started to get very short and too agreeable. I sensed some submissive replies. I didn't want you feeling that way.* I was thinking, not simmering. I do try to see other people's viewpoints.... before bawling them out. I don't want you to avoid giving your opinion or talking because I might not like it, though I appreciate you trying to be nice. I only know of once where you pushed me over the edge. And even that wasn't a bad thing, it led me to think hard for a year and to come up with some of the best writing I've ever done. A little pushing isn't always a bad thing. Some of us need it. I do get attached to some movies but I would let you know if you were pushing me on a film I really liked too much to discuss that way. *That's how I often feel about discussion. I'll start discussing a film and realize I like it more than I thought. It's because of the discussion. I have also changed my tune on characters and stories because of discussion. Wuthering Heights is one that comes to mind.* I remember that. You were open minded enough to change your mind. I also remember you weren't as thrilled with a couple of others in your descriptions that you later said you liked a lot. *It's who you associated with most. You also found Pierre to be nice and accommodating and you felt Jean left "you" in the cold. I associate most with Jean because I'm close to family. That's who I am.* Yes, and I hope I didn't offend you because of that identification. Maybe this is where I don't like to be shown up - where I identify strongly with a character. Luckily, this movie is not one where it matters significantly to me. It's not as close to me as some. And no, I didn't find Pierre to be a villain. he was a real flesh and blood person, with faults. At least he knew himself. Some men are like Pierre on the inside, but try to make you feel like they are Jean. Those are the reprehensible ones to me. He didn't lie. He made it clear from the get go of his distaste for drama or emotional scenes. So no, he didn't bother me. He knew he was selfish. That being said, what he did to Jean and Marie in the restaurant was reprehensible. *And I completely forgot about that scene! And I just watched the film! I thought Jean didn't even contact her. It is funny how so many of us create reasons in our mind for things but the truth isn't that.* I thought the same thing. I remembered her waiting at the station, never getting that phone call from him, thinking she might kill herself under the train going by. BTW, I loved that special effect of the lighted windows going by, looking at her face while she decides what to do. *I see. It seems like A Woman's Face is a mix of both. The ending comes with the obligatory, "let's get married." It's quite a tidy bow.* Ugh. You make tidy sound like a bad word. *That's a very good point. That is quite dark. I think Anna (Joan Crawford) felt she was in debt to Torsten (Conrad Veidt). He's the one who took an interest in her when she was desperate for such attention. She saw that as "love."* I think she knew nothing else to compare it to. I felt it was more complex than indebtedness though. I think Veidt was masterful at making you see the kindness towards her, while all the time you knew there was something wrong and odd about him.Right from the beginning, I liked him, I didn't like him... at the same time. Interesting. He was charismatic. *I don't see it being about a delusion of male affection. I think it's a fear of loneliness and a feeling of emptiness. What can erase these feelings? I'm sure both Marie and Jean's mother would love for Jean to be alive. I'm sure Jean's mother would love for her husband to be alive. I can't see them thinking, "who needs a man's affection?"* No you've misread me or I didn't put it well enough. I suspect it is the latter. Excuse me forgoing on about this, but I need to clarify it by writing it out long-windedly. This could take a while! What I mean is, Marie was searching for Jean to FILL her heart, to rescue her - first from her father, and then from boredom and a feeling of waste. He DID fill her heart, but she was searching him for something he could not do....maybe for him to love her as she loved him? I don't know. She easily threw away her family life, because they were so rotten. But he could not do that. Then Menjou was just a stopover while she recuperated from the shock of being left on her own. When Jean came back to her, he disappointed again. She was left again with a full heart, because she did not express her love and no mere man could have rescued Marie - only Marie could rescue Marie. Luckily, she had the strength to do so. His mother thought that by keeping Jean all to herself she would be happy. That by totally holding him away from a life with Marie, HE would be happy too. But it didn't work that way. She also never really expressed what was on her mind. She was disappointed that he picked this girl. Her expectations were higher or perhaps she wanted HIM to keep only her happy, rather than the other way around. It's the exclusivity of love that is the delusion... THAT'S the delusion I am talking about. Not some feminist diatribe against men or marriage. Each woman put all her eggs into one basket that was Jean, and he was completely overwhelmed. They both loved Jean and they both killed him with their exclusivity. "Fill MY whole heart with your love. Make MY life complete. Live for MY ideals." He had his own perhaps wrongheaded ideals. He kept them apart in his life, compartmentalized without really meaning to. Till he felt he didn't belong anywhere in the world. Stuck in between without a place to land. He looked down on Marie's life. He couldn't get past it to the real Marie. Marie couldn't step out of her world any more than the mother could step out of HER world. He couldn't meet the demands of his mother's lofty ideals. He couldn't see through that to the loving mother she was, that if he crossed her ideals she would still love him and get over it. He was unable to express his feelings. He felt he let them both down, an inadequacy in some intangible way. None of them could escape their EXPECTATIONS of what a loved one IS. None of them lived up to the expectations of the others. Both women loved Jean more than anything else in the world, but was that what was best for Jean, in either case? They wanted him to fill some emptiness in their lives. His mom wanted to isolate him, and Marie wanted him to choose her OVER the mother. I think what Marie learned about life was the same as the mother, that expectations fall short of reality...especially when those expectations are not spoken or dealt with. Perhaps they were unreasonable to begin with. And that's OK. It took poor Jean's death to make them humble their expectations of what love was. *That's an excellent point! I didn't even think of the statement of her ripping her necklace out of the hands of a bum.* I should clarify that she shoved a big wad of money into the bum's hand in exchange for the pearls. This I think is a telegraph of the kind of person Marie was. I love that Marie was a real person at all times in this movie. She was a love interest and a woman of the world and a caregiver. They don't have to be mutually exclusive. At all times she was engaging and sympathetic. Back then, the tramp or vamp was always bad. This is what I find rather amazing about the movie. She retains her heroine status despite her lifestyle. *I liked that scene too. I do believe she's the same woman, but life happens, and sometimes you can't see yourself anymore.* *I agree with you. I think we all get comfortable in a lifestyle and we become something different but not wholly different.* But there's Marie staring back at herself from the portrait. We all need this sometimes. Isn't it a good thing that Jean gave that to Marie? *I really didn't have bad feelings about any of the people except when Jean didn't speak up to his mother about his love for Marie. Other than that, I pretty much felt that life got in the way of Jean and Marie's love for each other. They both were forced into a way of living they didn't truly want.* Circumstance. *I think there's more to it than just a decision of independence or not. I feel it's also about giving up the benefits of that kind of life. I really don't blame her. How many people are going to toss aside luxury? The thing is, we don't see everything she does to obtain those benefits.* No but it's pretty clear. And Jean could not get past that. I don't know that I could either. *I definitely agree with you about Marie being frustrated with Pierre and the empty life she is living. She's certainly searching in that scene. I think it's inevitable for a woman to reach that point.* I think so too. No matter who you are, if you settle, you are going to get to that point of staring at yourself wondering if that is all there is. *And I also feel you are right on point about Marie needing the spiritual kind of work she finds to help her with her love. But I think even that will need to be enhanced as time goes on. She's still a young woman.* Perhaps so. But I believe she and the mother will be more bending with one another... because of what happened to Jean. *Thank you. And the thing is, Marie is happier than Jean. Jean was a wreck inside. He was doing something he felt he needed to do but he also sacrificed a lot of his own happiness to do it. He ended up taking the easy way out. I'm still shocked by that scene.* Jean had some deep problems. I think inside him, his mother and father's voice were fighting what he really was. And Marie was a happier person, that's so. She was resilient and she had some inner ability to live with less I think. I can't get over that scene. It stays with you long after the rest of the movie fades from your memory. I was so shocked by it. It's unexpected. the way real life is unexpected. We think he's going to kill Menjou, a traditional movie confrontation. I think this is the single scene that made this movie one of my favorites, though. Because it shows a harsh reality within the context of a simple drama. It elevates the film to drama rather than melodrama. It's modern. *He's very likable. I know I didn't dislike him. I just think he represents a selfish way of life. He's used to buying everything he wants.* But he knew himself, no delusions there. There will always be Pierres. Not so many Jeans, sadly. *Ha! It looks like your little girl is a chip off the block! She's a romantic!* I kind of hope not. Is that wrong to say? Something in me wants to go a little bit Havisham and turn her into an Estella... or a Pierre. I don't want her to be hurt. But of course, I can't turn her into anything. She is who she is and has been from birth. I can guide... sometimes. But she has to make her own mistakes. I hope I can dissuade her from making big ones. *Myrna always does in the end.* *I know. That's why I love her!* Me too. sigh. She's my top favorite. *Ha! That's hilarious! It's true, Richard often played the fidgety Brit, just as you referenced with his appearance on The Dick Van Dyke Show. The first thing I always think of with Richard is Cluny Brown. He's playing a persnickety guy there, too.* I tried to find a clip of him from Cluny Brown, and then from the Dick Van Dyke Show. I was surprised I couldn't find either one on youtube. Edited by: JackFavell on Feb 28, 2014 8:52 AM Edited by: JackFavell on Feb 28, 2014 9:09 AM
  21. JackFavell

    The Annual FrankGrimes Torture Thread

    Frankie, I can't be sure of anything, except I think the Blue Angel will come in first.
  22. JackFavell

    The Annual FrankGrimes Torture Thread

    OH MY GOSH! Wow, Talk about a niche... Poor William Reynolds! He is handsome but I swear I never noticed it in these two movies... he's such a ....word for what happens when you stab your finger with a needle. Yeah definitely Oedipal issues... is that you next to him, you psychologist you?
  23. JackFavell

    The Annual FrankGrimes Torture Thread

    *The only thing that really seriously disturbs me in this movie is the patriarchal tone of the son ( played by William Reynolds. ) The events might effect him, but its really an issue between his parents. Didnt he run roughshod over mother Jane Wymans love life in All That Heaven Allows? Sheeeeesh.* Don't tell me that was the same kid in both movies!!! It certainly could have been I suppose, if not the same actor, then the same spirit. Man, you believe the worst of everyone dude! Go take some psychology lessons like your sister.
  24. JackFavell

    The Annual FrankGrimes Torture Thread

    Scotchie - I am sure you are right about MGM, and I certainly shouldn't have implied that they made NO dark films... I don't want to scare Frankie off completely! I think their dramas are among the best. There are very dark parts of some of those dramas as well. In the silent era, some of the blackest films were made at MGM, including He Who Gets Slapped and Greed. They made several pre-codes that were very dark like Payment Deferred and Freaks. They distributed some of the German films of the twenties we know of now, like Faust. Prior to WWII they made The Mortal Storm and Escape, which were both pretty pessimistic about what was happening in Europe. Shocking I think, looking back at their timing. Maybe it was because MGM took the lead with wartime propaganda and forget-your-troubles type movies that we get the idea that they were soft. As soon as the war was over, and especially when Dore Schary came into power there, MGM made some really disturbing films.... as early as 1945 they made The Picture of Dorian Gray. Such a feel good movie! So forgive me if I give the wrong impression of the studio. I don't mean to imply they were lightweights. It's just that in that particular period, A Woman's Face really stood out for me.
  25. JackFavell

    The Annual FrankGrimes Torture Thread

    Laffite - I love your review of A Woman's Face! Now I really must go dig up my copy of it, that is if I actually have a copy. I think I do. I enjoyed your description of the flower bouquet scene. You really captured the giddiness of it and how quickly it turns. I also need to watch the ending, as I thought she was acquitted! I think perhaps we can keep Frank tortured for a long time with discussion of this movie. We certainly don't want him to lose his torture. Edited by: JackFavell on Feb 26, 2014 7:01 PM

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