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About speedracer5

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    Errol Flynn's girlfriend in a parallel universe,back in time
  • Birthday 06/22/1984

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    Forest Grove, Oregon
  • Interests
    Any and everything Classic Hollywood; reliving my nostalgic Nick-at-Nite days by watching a combination of Hulu, Amazon Prime, You Tube and my DVDs; my favorite TV show of all time--I LOVE LUCY; cooking; baking; trying new beers, wines and cocktails; antique stores; writing my blog; playing with Buddy--my yellow-sided Green Cheek Conure; traveling; sleeping; procrastinating; anything and everything that I like.

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  1. speedracer5

    Hollywood Running Out of Ideas?

    I think a willingness to learn about the social mores of these times also goes hand in hand with understanding the humor in these films. From watching old films, if you're interested enough to not only just take what is presented to you at face value, but to also glean some insight from the film and learn about the era, you can pick up on what was considered unacceptable behavior. Design For Living's scandal may not be obvious, but if you know something about attitudes re: sex back then, then it comes together. While I was watching Make Way For Tomorrow, Beulah Bondi's character turns down a cocktail multiple times, saying "oh no, I just can't." But you could tell she's turning it down not because she doesn't want one, but because she thinks that she can't. Knowing what I do about social attitudes during that era and most likely the attitudes that would have been around during the 19th century when Bondi's character would have been coming of age, I knew it was because "women don't drink in public." That's one of the reasons the Flappers were so scandalous. Later Bondi says as much in the hotel scene. Many people in audiences today are so used to having the movies spoon-feed everything to them, that there is no need for any critical thinking. While I understand that not everyone wants to have to analyze a movie and just wants some passive entertainment, sometimes you have to put in some effort to understand what the filmmaker is trying to say. This effort, I imagine, is one of the reasons why some people are so reluctant to watch old films. You have to work a little to understand them. A lot of people these days also seem to lack any curiosity about things that are unfamiliar to them, which I think is a shame.
  2. speedracer5

    Funny Ladies.

    Yes I forgot about that part, that part was pretty funny. I guess on a whole, the film isn't slapstick--not overt comedy? The only thing about this film I don't like is Jean's Swiss Miss hairstyle.
  3. speedracer5

    Noir Alley

    **SPOILERS** I really liked The Damned Don't Cry. The only character I really sympathized with was Kent Smith's. He was just minding his own business until he comes across Joan Crawford's floozy. He unwittingly gets in over his head as he falls head over heels for Joan. Then, he's in way too far and has no choice but to continue in an occupation that he is morally opposed to. Joan Crawford's character, while I understood the motivation behind her actions, she was not sympathetic. I sympathized with her at the beginning of the film, being married to the quick tempered Richard Egan and then losing her son so abruptly and violently. I liked her transition from the timid woman trying to make it on her own (with no experience) to becoming a fast-talking "dress model" aka escort. At this point in the film, I kind of thought of her as Mildred Pierce. Perhaps this is the next part of Mildred's saga. She leaves home to start a new life, ends up with Richard Egan and loses her son, decides to start another new life, and ends up a "model." I thought all the men were great in this film, especially Kent Smith. His blandness worked for him in this film. It seems believable that he would fall in love with Crawford--as she was probably the first woman that thought of him in a romantic sense. David Brian was great as the leader of the gang and I like that his own story paralleled Crawford's. Steve Cochran's younger man (or at least he seemed younger) gangster was good. I found it hard to believe he'd fall in love with Crawford, but I get the sense that he was probably using her the way she was using him. The only man I believe that was genuinely in love with Crawford was Smith. Crawford was using each man to obtain something for herself and the men (sans Smith) were using her right back. I also liked the non-linear structure of the narrative. Noir seems to use a lot of flashbacks, but it works in this sense. I didn't like the ending, I thought that Crawford should have died there in the lawn. Her convalescing in bed and the subsequent lines from the police men asking if she'll be out on the streets again (or something to that effect), leaves the audience with the idea that Crawford will forever be trying to get something better. Will she re-emerge as Ethel Whitehead? Or Lorna Hansen Forbes? Or a new-alter ego? I think Kent Smith rid himself of Crawford. Perhaps with all the big gangsters dead, he can runaway and start a new life? I also thought Crawford looked better as Ethel Whitehead with the longer hair. Once she adopts the "Ethel Mertz" hairstyle (as I call it), I think it aged her 10 years at least. Sometimes with these Crawford films, while I think she is pretty at times, other times, she strikes me as an odd looking woman. I think the character in the film who described her as a "handsome woman" best captures my thoughts on her looks. Later in her career, she got a little crazy with the eyebrows and the lips, and I think she moved over into caricature territory. Eddie Muller's introduction and closing comments were excellent, almost as good as the movie. I like that he has genuine enthusiasm for the subject matter, it's quite obvious how much he loves these films that he presents.
  4. speedracer5

    Noir Alley

    I don't even know who would win and what they win? Best "worst" dancer? The least "bad" dancer?
  5. speedracer5

    Recent Buys

    Yesterday I hit up two of my favorite used DVD stores in Portland. I came away with a few treasures: -Rebel Without a Cause. I actually already had this movie, but my copy sustained some flood damage a couple years ago. This is a replacement copy--the exact same version I had too! It was the 50th Anniversary 2-disc version. -Murder on the Orient Express (1974). This was pretty cheap so I was like why not? -The Jetsons Season 1. I do like cartoons. I want to collect The Flinstones and The Jetsons. Those were my favorite Hanna Barbara cartoons. Even though they're essentially the same show, just a different era, they're both entertaining. I believe The Jetsons was made in the 60s and the 80s. I remember a lot more of the 80s episodes than the 60s ones. I loved the movie, The Jetsons Meet The Flintstones when I was little. I prefer both of these cartoons over Scooby Doo, Where Are You?. My dad has Jonny Quest. -The Old Dark House (1932). While I'm not the biggest horror fan, I've found that I really like the James Whale Universal horror films. I love the style. I think Whale's films and Vincent Price are my favorite horror. This DVD I got is the Kino release. -Midnite Movies: The Comedy of Terrors & The Raven. This Vincent Price/Peter Lorre/Boris Karloff double feature should be good. Lol. I liked The Comedy of Terrors even though it was completely ridiculous. -By the Light of the Silvery Moon. I really liked this Doris Day/Gordon MacRae film. I wish I would have found the sequel, On Moonlight Bay. -The Kid (1921). I found this Charlie Chaplin silent film. This film is so cute. -Scarlet Street. I loved this Fritz Lang film. This is public domain, so I hope the quality is decent. I tend to not buy public domain films--unless it's the only version available. Then I do a lot of research to see which version is the best. I see Kino has a version, which is probably the version I should have gotten. Well it was only $5. We'll see.
  6. speedracer5

    Funny Ladies.

    I've never seen The Impatient Years. I always look out for Arthur's films on the TCM schedule, but they always seem to be either The More the Merrier or Talk of the Town-- I like both of these films, but I've seen them and own them. I'd like to see more of Arthur's work. I also love her in The Foreign Affair, but that's not really a comedic role. I also liked her in The Whole Town is Talking and More Than a Secretary. She's also great in the Thin Man-esque The Ex-Mrs. Bradford.
  7. speedracer5

    I Just Watched...

    ***SPOILERS*** Make Way For Tomorrow (1937). I recorded this film off TCM a while back, and it had been living on my DVR for awhile. I always saw this movie on the shelves during Barnes & Noble's Criterion Sale. I liked the cover art. I finally watched this film last night. This was one of the sweetest and saddest movies I have watched in a while. It ranks right up there with Up. Make Way For Tomorrow was directed by LeoMcCarey and released the same year as his Oscar-winning film, The Awful Truth. In fact, upon accepting the Oscar, McCarey reportedly said that he was given the Oscar for the wrong film. From what I've read, McCarey considers this film one of his masterpieces. It is a beautiful film. I wonder if the lack of star power and/or the depressing storyline hurt its success at the box office. This film (among many others) proves why box office success shouldn't be used as an indicator of a film's quality. Beulah Bondi and Victor Moore play elderly couple, Lucy and Barkley Cooper. At the beginning of the film, we see the elderly couple and 4/5 of their grown, middle aged children assembling for some sort of announcement. It seems that the Great Depression has wiped Lucy and Barkley out. The bank will be foreclosing on their home next week. It seems that Lucy and Barkley had known for a few months that they were losing their home, but didn't let their children know, hoping that something would turn up. This theme of ungrounded optimism will be a recurring theme throughout the film. I have the sense that deep-down, Lucy and Barkley knew that they were going to have to turn to their children for help. I think pride prevented them from doing so until they ran out of time and were forced to tell them, otherwise, they'd be homeless. The children, George (Thomas Mitchell), Cora (Elizabeth Risdon), Nellie (Minna Gombell), and Robert (Ray Mayer) are shocked by their parents' announcement and then are forced to awkwardly discuss what to do in front of their parents. Both George and Cora state that they have room in their home, but only for one parent. Nellie, who seemingly has room in her home for her parents, will not commit. Robert doesn't participate in the discussion at all and seems more interested in making fun of his sister than actually discussing this serious situation with his siblings. In the end, it is decided that Lucy will move into George's NYC apartment with his wife and daughter, and Barkley will move into Cora's home 300 miles upstate. Honestly, looking at George's apartment, which I didn't even realize was an apartment until a character said so, George, I think has the money and space for both parents. He has a maid! The separation between the parents is supposed to last only a few months--but you know it'll end up being permanent. This film just seems like the type of film where that will happen. Anyway, throughout much of the film, we see the parents, children, in-laws and grandchildren all trying to co-exist with one another. Lucy's arrival to her son's home completely disrupts her daughter-in-law Anita's (Fay Bainter) social life. Granddaughter Rhoda (Barbara Read), who's about to turn 18, is completely embarrassed by her grandmother and won't bring her boyfriends and friends to the home. Anita is concerned because she no longer meets Rhoda's boyfriends and has no idea who her daughter is galavanting around with. We see Rhoda rebelling, such as when she goes to the movies with Lucy and then sneaks out to meet a boy. Later, Rhoda leaves the home to go meet some 35-year old man. Lucy knows about both instances, but in an effort to keep a relationship with her granddaughter, she stays mum, until she's forced to tell Anita. At some point in the film, Rhoda stays out all night until the family receives a phone call in the morning telling them to pick Rhoda up. We are not told what happened, only that Anita has a contact who will somehow keep Rhoda's name out of the papers. I am speculating that either a) Rhoda was caught having underage sex in the car or perhaps b ) she was picked up intoxicated and thrown into the drunk tank. Anita resents Lucy's presence in her home, because she seems to interfere with her social life. Anita it seems teaches a weekly bridge class and dislikes Lucy hanging around. It seems that Lucy's attempts to be friendly are disruptive to Anita's teachings and perhaps, more importantly, disruptive to Anita's attempts to maintain an image of upper class. Lucy's from an earlier generation where women don't drink in public and things are simpler. There is a very emotional scene where Lucy takes a phone call from her husband and speaks loudly during the bridge class, disrupting it. Cora forces her father to sleep on her couch and acts like his presence in her home is a complete inconvenience. Her husband is irritated that his father in law is there. I get the sense that Cora feels like she was forced to board her father, as none of her other siblings were chomping at the bit to take them in. Barkley ends up catching a bad cold and has to deal with having a young doctor trying to care for him. Barkley proves to be a tough patient as he feels like this doctor isn't old enough to be practicing. Prior to getting ill, Barkley had met and befriended the local drugstore clerk, a gentle man of Eastern European descent. He is completely happy with his life, despite not having any children. Barkley asks him about his lack of children, and he essentially says that as long as he has his store and his wife, he is completely content. I get the sense that the man loves his store because it gives him a niche in his community. Nellie, I sense feels guilty about not taking her parents in, as she's the one with enough room and money to be able to keep them together. Her husband is adamant that he will not live with her parents, telling her that he married her, not her parents. Meanwhile, they're going out to dinner with his mother. Barkley's illness forces Cora to contact the unseen sister, Addy, who lives out in California. Cora gets Addy to agree to take Barkley into her home--again, only one parent can be accomodated. Cora presents this plan to Barkley under the guise that the California weather will keep him from getting sick. But we know that Cora is just trying to get him out of her house. Meanwhile, Nellie takes Lucy to the "Home for the Aged" under the ruse that she can meet some nice women her own age. Nellie keeps hyping up how nice the home is and how lovely it is. Lucy writes about this to Barkley and you, as the audience get the impression that Nellie is really trying to move Lucy into an old folks home, without explicitly saying so. At the end of the film, Lucy and Barkley, at this point having been separated more than three months, are getting together for the afternoon before Barkley's train leaves for California. They have five hours to spend together. Their children are planning a dinner for them. Lucy and Barkley spend an hour or so walking through Central Park in NYC and end up getting a ride to the hotel where they spent their honeymoon. A car salesman saw them through his store window and figuring that they're old, so they must be rich, he approaches them with the intent of selling them a vehicle. He offers to give them a test ride in his own vehicle. The couple, thinking he was just a nice man, agree. While talking to each other in the car, they decide to go to their old honeymoon hotel and asks the man to drive them. He's so charmed by them, he agrees. Even after he admits to them his original reason for driving them, you get the sense that he was honored to drive them to dinner. While at the old hotel, the couple have the time of their lives together. Lucy drinks in public for the first time. She and Barkley do a waltz. They spend the evening eating, drinking, reminiscing and laughing. The hotel owner is so charmed by them, he spends much time talking to them and comps them their entire visit. Meanwhile the children are waiting for their parents. Not so much worried about them, more upset that the roast will get ruined and that they're essentially wasting their time. We see Barkley call the kids to tell them that he and Lucy will not be attending their dinner. Then he says something to them in the phone that we don't hear. Later, it turns out that he essentially ripped them a new one for being ungrateful and selfish. The scene at the hotel is the cutest and sweetest scene in the whole film. The subject of their separation or money troubles isn't mentioned. All we hear about is how they spent their honeymoon and their lives before children. When the time comes for the couple to separate, there is a bittersweet feeling. There is a very real chance that either half of the couple could pass on before seeing each other again. Barkley's "It's been very nice knowing you" and Lucy's "Thank you for 50 wonderful years" goodbyes were heartwrenching. I read that the Paramount boss wanted McCarey to make the ending happy--like someone magically found room for the couple to be together, or Barkley doesn't leave, or something to that effect. I'm glad that McCarey stuck with this ending. Nothing else would have worked. An upbeat, happy ending would have ruined the film--and been almost a cop-out. This was a beautiful film. Bondi was amazing as the elderly Lucy. It was also interesting in that although we should dislike the children, their reasons for not wanting their parents in their households are legitimate and valid reasons. Cora is a bit of a witch, but I did empathize with Anita. If only, because she seemed like the type of woman who ran a very tight ship, with every minute scheduled, while trying to maintain an image of high society. Lucy's attempts to fit in and be part of the household do not go over well, because she's not part of Anita's routine. George is really the only "kid" who comes off the best, just because he seemingly wanted to help his parents, but perhaps didn't want to really upset Anita by taking in both parents. I do not think however, that I would ever need to own this film. I don't see myself wanting to watch this over and over.
  8. speedracer5

    Noir Alley

    I agree. Flamingo Road would have been a better addition.
  9. speedracer5

    Noir Alley

    I also enjoy Joan in her post MGM roles. I like her 1940s through 1950s films--before she got into that horror genre--"hag horror" is that what it's called? I am not a fan of Joan's starlet career. Her dancing is horrible. I cannot even watch Dancing Lady, despite Fred Astaire being in there, someone whose dancing I like. I've seen Dancing Lady once and spent the whole time fearing the next time Joan would dance. Then her non-dancing glamour queen roles are just meh. Nothing that exciting. There's nothing about her that is appealing to me. But I love her 1940s-1950s career. She's no longer the floozy. She's a strong woman who knows what she wants. She's fantastic in Mildred Pierce and deserved her Oscar, even though she won it over Gene Tierney, whom I also thought was deserving of it for her work in Leave Her to Heaven. I wish Ann Blyth would have won for Mildred Pierce as well. I just love Mildred Pierce. I even like Humoresque even though others here don't. However, more of my love for Humoresque is probably more for John Garfield. Joan's also great in Flamingo Road, Harriet Craig, Sudden Fear and one of my favorites from this period in her career--Autumn Leaves.
  10. speedracer5

    Funny Ladies.

    I love Jean Arthur. She's one of my favorites. I know many find her voice off-putting, but I think it's adorable. I really like The More the Merrier and Arthur looked great in the film. She looked fantastic in that 2-piece dress she wears. I do agree that The More the Merrier may not showcase her talents to their fullest, even though I believe she was nominated for an Oscar for this film. I think The More the Merrier belongs to Charles Coburn though--he's hilarious. One of my favorite scenes in the film is when Arthur gives Coburn the low-down on their schedule for the day. "At 7:00, I get up and start the coffee. At 7:05 I am in the shower. At 7:15am, I am getting dressed for work. At 7:20 I am putting on my eggs. At 7:25, I am eating my eggs and you are taking a shower...." Or whatever she says. Talk about no room for error in that meticulously planned schedule! I also love The Devil and Miss Jones that film is hilarious and showcases Arthur's comedic skills. I would have also scheduled Easy Living which I love and Arthur was funny. Re: Lucille Ball day. I don't know what they were thinking when they scheduled Forever Darling. Of all the films of Ball's that could have been chosen, Forever Darling would have ranked very far down on my list. The Long, Long Trailer would have been a better choice. However, I would have even scheduled: The Affairs of Annabel, Yours Mine and Ours, The Fuller Brush Girl, Miss Grant Takes Richmond, Next Time I Marry... anything else other than Forever Darling.
  11. speedracer5

    I Just Watched...

    I believe Lyle Talbot's son played Beaver's friend Gilbert in Leave it to Beaver.
  12. speedracer5

    I Just Watched...

    What a cute bathing suit! I'd wear that now. Of course, I'd have to start an extensive jogging regimen to get Bette's figure. I refuse to take up Bette's smoking habit, which no doubt assisted in helping her keep her figure.
  13. speedracer5

    I Just Watched...

    I thought Bogart was cute in The Petrified Forest too. I even like him in Casablanca! Maybe it's the white dinner jacket. As he aged, he started taking on more of the basset hound look, so physically, he lost some of his appeal. However, he still had his fantastic voice and charisma. Lyle Talbot, while I do agree that he's attractive, reminds me of a pre-code Glenn Ford.
  14. speedracer5

    Hollywood Running Out of Ideas?

    Wow. This comment was written when I was a senior in high school! While I don't know any film students personally, from reading message boards online, I find that many people who want to present themselves as film buffs or amateur filmmakers, tend to regurgitate the same statements about film so that they seem knowledgeable. Citizen Kane is highly regarded as one of the best films of all-time. I've read many comments from people stating that they don't understand the film. An online film buff, wanting to seem like they "get it" and thus are a more sophisticated film viewer than others, will spew a bunch of fancy-sounding verbiage about the film (probably stuff that they've heard). These film students probably heard about the controversial content in Gone With the Wind, so thus they hate it. They've heard that Citizen Kane was the best film of all time, so they love it. Pulp Fiction was a big film in 1995. I've seen it, I didn't like it. I've seen Citizen Kane and I liked it, though *I* wouldn't consider it the greatest film of all time. I haven't seen Gone with the Wind from beginning to end, though I know all the famous scenes and lines--I just haven't found 3.5 hours to dedicate to watching this film. While silent films aren't my favorite, though I like Chaplin, Keaton, and Lloyd, I don't know how you could want to be a film student and completely shun the beginnings of film history. I don't like the OP's use of "mental retardates" to describe these uninformed film students, but I do agree with the sentiment he's expressing. While you could probably go out and make a film, I would imagine that if you want to study film, you should study film. Not just study the film that you're familiar with. I really like reading interviews from film people, like Martin Scorsese, for example, who regularly discuss their favorite old films and how they influenced their career.
  15. speedracer5

    I Just Watched...

    I love Three on a Match, in fact, it was the reason I purchased the Forbidden Hollywood Collection Vol 2 when I saw it at one of the used movie stores I frequent. This collection also has the amazing Night Nurse on it as well, so it was a win-win all around. But I really liked Three on a Match. Pre-codes can be a fascinating look at the early days of Hollywood sound films and with the added bonus of some racy content (in comparison with production code films), they can be very enjoyable. However, sometimes these films can also be a bit creaky, or not as scandalous as one would hope, or sometimes they're kind of lame, as they don't live up to their title (Illicit comes to mind). Also for every Barbara Stanwyck or Joan Blondell that shine in their roles, there are a lot of actors who are either dull, or overact to the point of being irritating. Three on a Match however is a solid 63-min film that entertains from beginning to end--and it's short! I loved Ann Dvorak in this film and I wish she'd had a longer career. Bette's role wasn't significant, but I love her, so she was a welcome addition to the cast. Warren William doesn't really do anything for me, but he was fine in this film. I found nothing objectionable about him. Lyle Talbot to me seems like another George Brent or Kent Smith--an actor who is fine, turns in a serviceable performance and is reliable--but nothing about him is overly compelling or captivating. Joan Blondell is one of my favorites and is long overdue for a SOTM tribute by TCM. However, with Glenda Farrell being honored next month, there are a ton of Blondell films featured. I don't know if TCM would honor Blondell so soon after Farrell, since many of their films are the same. Maybe I can hope for a SUTS day. I also loved Humphrey Bogart's short role in this film. Dare I say it, I actually thought Bogie was kind of cute in this film? I know he's not thought of as being one of Hollywood's handsomest leading men, but before he started aging rapidly, I can find his appeal, even if he's no Errol Flynn. I'm digging this look on Bogie.

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