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Gloria Grahame double feature on Jan. 7, 2018

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The films are frequently seen on TCM, but you'll at least want to catch the wraparounds for IN A LONELY PLACE and THE BAD AND THE BEAUTIFUL when the two films air on January 7. 

Oscar-nominated actress Annette Bening, who plays Gloria Grahame in the new movie FILM STARS DON'T DIE IN LIVERPOOL, will join TCM's Eddie Muller to introduce the films.

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I really liked Gloria Grahame in Sudden Fear.  She's fantastic in the "bad girl" roles.  She has just the right amount of sleaze about her.  I even like her in It's a Wonderful Life where she appears like she'd be sweet as pie, but you know the minute that James Stewart's character got together with her, she'd be leading him astray. 

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Until recently I had only known Gloria from her role as Ado Annie in OKLAHOMA! but having watched IN A LONELY PLACE, she just blew me away with her performance, which is amazing especially when you consider her co-star is Humphrey Bogart (who is also great, this is one of his most underrated performances IMO). Can't believe she wasn't even nominated.

Have to check out more of her films, especially THE BIG HEAT and SUDDEN FEAR, both films I have heard many great things about.

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Gloria Grahame was in many fine films.   My recommendations in chronological order are:

It's a Wonderful Life   - I believe most have seen this Christmas film

Cross Fire -  message film noir 

Song of the Thin Man -  Nick and Nora film but Gloria gets to shine in one scene

In A Lonely Place -  Bogie and Gloria make a fine couple 

Macao - Mitchum \ Russell noir with Gloria as the secondary dame

Sudden Fear - Crawford film with Gloria as the secondary dame

The Bad and the Beautiful - Gloria won an Oscar for this but I still don't know why!  

The Glass Wall - nice film with Gloria giving a good performance

The Big Heat - her best role and one of the best noir films

Human Desire - another film with Glenn Ford.   Here Gloria is the femme fatale and she is at her best

Not As a Stranger - Mitchum as a doctor.  Ok, that doesn't work but Gloria as a bored women sure does her magic on him (and sadly hurts very sweet Olivia DeHavilland) in a film were Sinatra gives the best performance

Odds Against Tomorrow -  great noir film and one of the last in the classic noir period.   Robert Ryan and Gloria team up again.   Gloria doesn't have a big role but she makes the most of it.

 

 

 

  

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16 hours ago, Bethluvsfilms said:

Until recently I had only known Gloria from her role as Ado Annie in OKLAHOMA! but having watched IN A LONELY PLACE, she just blew me away with her performance, which is amazing especially when you consider her co-star is Humphrey Bogart (who is also great, this is one of his most underrated performances IMO). Can't believe she wasn't even nominated.

Have to check out more of her films, especially THE BIG HEAT and SUDDEN FEAR, both films I have heard many great things about.

I loved Sudden Fear.  It was such a bummer when my DVR died and I had to get a new one.  I lost my recording of Sudden Fear. I believe the film is available on Blu-Ray, I just haven't gotten it yet. 

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41 minutes ago, jamesjazzguitar said:

Gloria Grahame was in many fine films.   My recommendations in chronological order are:

It's a Wonderful Life   - I believe most have seen this Christmas film

Cross Fire -  message film noir 

Song of the Thin Man -  Nick and Nora film but Gloria gets to shine in one scene

In A Lonely Place -  Bogie and Gloria make a fine couple 

Macao - Mitchum \ Russell noir with Gloria as the secondary dame

Sudden Fear - Crawford film with Gloria as the secondary dame

The Bad and the Beautiful - Gloria won an Oscar for this but I still don't know why!  

The Glass Wall - nice film with Gloria giving a good performance

The Big Heat - her best role and one of the best noir films

Human Desire - another film with Glenn Ford.   Her Gloria is the femme fatale and she is at her best

Not As a Stranger - Mitchum as a doctor.  Ok, that doesn't work but Gloria as a bored women sure does her magic on him (and sadly hurts very sweet Olivia DeHavilland) in a film were Sinatra gives the best performance

Odds Against Tomorrow -  great noir film and one of the last in the classic noir period.   Robert Ryan and Gloria team up again.   Gloria doesn't have a big role but she makes the most of it.

 

 

 

  

Song of the Thin Man is my #2 favorite film in the series after the first one.  I loved the jazz music and Gloria is excellent as the doomed singer in the nightclub. 

I've also seen It's a Wonderful Life, In a Lonely Place, Sudden Fear and The Bad and the BeautifulI'm always on the search for more Gloria Grahame. 

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One of Grahame's final films was Joan Micklin Silver's 1979 relationship tale "Chilly Scenes of Winter" -- originally released as "Head Over Heels." She played the suicidal mother of the lead character played by the late John Heard (pictured below). The film also starred Mary Beth Hurt, Peter Riegert, Kenneth McMillan and Mark Metcalf.

Image result for gloria grahame chilly scenes of winter

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On the podcast I listen to, "You Must Remember This" (which is currently in hiatus), there is an episode about Gloria Grahame.  The episode covers Grahame's arrival in Hollywood as Gloria Hallward (who was later renamed by Louis B. Mayer as "Gloria Grahame").  She was originally under contract at MGM and only appeared in a couple nothing parts.  It wasn't until Frank Capra was looking for a blonde actress for a small part in his next film, It's a Wonderful Life.  Grahame was loaned out to Capra who was making his film at RKO. It's a Wonderful Life turned out to be Grahame's big break.  MGM disagreed and sold her contract to RKO.  It was at Grahame's new studio where she found her niche in noir as the sleazy femme fatale.  She was nominated for an Academy Award for her performance in Crossfire.  Grahame's career was going well for a few years--she was scoring good parts in good films.  But it seems that her Oscar win for The Bad and the Beautiful was the climax of her career.  She scored some more good parts after her Oscar, like in Sudden Fear and The Big Heat, but she was pretty much done by Oklahoma! Which by the way, in the podcast, there is a clip of Gloria singing in Oklahoma!  I have not seen this film, so I do not know the context in which Gloria sings this song, but she is terrible.  

The podcast also focused on Grahame's increasing obsession with the appearance of her upper lip and the subsequent plastic surgery she received in order to "fix" this supposed flaw that Grahame saw.  Grahame thought that her upper lip was too thin. She felt that her lips didn't look "pouty" enough.  She would also stuff her upper lip with tissue to make her lips look fuller.  Grahame's poor male co-stars often didn't find out about the tissue until they were pulling it out of their own mouths after completing a kissing scene with their leading lady.  Eventually, Grahame's obsession with her physical appearance led to so many surgeries that parts of her face were rendered immobile. 

Finally the other aspect of the podcast focused on Gloria's supposed insatiable appetite for sex.  This appetite led her into many questionable affairs, one of which was with her teenaged stepson (whom she later married many years later).  Grahame's personal life was much more scandalous than any of the things that she did onscreen. 

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Nice front page of entertainment section article on the film Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool,  featuring Annette Bening playing Gloria Grahame.     Appears Bening became aware of Grahame while preparing for her role in The Grifters.  The director Steven Fears advised her to watch Grahame noir film to prepare for the role. 

Great to see so much coverage on an actress that I assume 99% of the general public doesn't know.  

Also a nice picture of Grahame and her friend the author Turner (author of the book the film is based on) taken in 1979.

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