speedracer5

I Just Watched...

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I love QUICKSAND!

Watching the fight between Peter Lorre and Mickey Rooney, is one of the all-time great screen matchups...It’s like watching two angry ferrets go out it.

FYI- THE STRIP (1951) Another ROONEY noir from late in his MGM career is coming on today at two. I wrote more about it in the hits and misses thread if you’re interested. It’s good. 

Hes also superb in THE HUMAN COMEDY, Which is one of my all-time favorite movies. But, I totally understand anybody who is irritated by him in a lot of his other films.

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12 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

The Sisters (1938) -  I found this an improvement over the majority of the 1938 movies that I've watched this week.  (7/10)

you know, 1938 was not really a good year for great movies. there is a slightly anesthetized, assembly line feel to the general output, not that there aren't some utter classics that did come out that year...But it's something of a watershed year between the superb output of 1932-1937 and 1939-1946.

 

**and having returned from perusing a list of the titles, there are quite a few films released that year that I- HONESTLY- do not care for- BOYS TOWN, JEZEBEL, YOU CAN'T TAKE IT WITH YOU, GRAND ILLUSION, ALGIERS...

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15 minutes ago, LornaHansonForbes said:

you know, 1938 was not really a good year for great movies. there is a slightly anesthetized, assembly line feel to the general output, not that there aren't some utter classics that did come out that year...But it's something of a watershed year between the superb output of 1932-1937 and 1939-1946.

 

**and having returned from perusing a list of the titles, there are quite a few films released that year that I- HONESTLY- do not care for- BOYS TOWN, JEZEBEL, YOU CAN'T TAKE IT WITH YOU, GRAND ILLUSION, ALGIERS...

I really wish Jezebel had been shot in color.  I think Bette's scandalous red dress in a sea of white (I think white was what she was expected to wear) would have had more of an impact.  I haven't seen You Can't Take it With You in such a long time, I'll have to watch it again to have an opinion.

The best 1938 film is probably The Adventures of Robin Hood.  Though I also liked Alexander's Ragtime Band, Angels With Dirty Faces, The Amazing Dr. Clitterhouse (though honestly, couldn't they have given Edward G Robinson a better name?), The Dawn Patrol, Test Pilot, Vivacious Lady and I know a lot of people on this board dislike this film, but I love Bringing Up Baby.  1938 seems to have been a big year for my man Flynn, it seems he starred in four films this year.

I also see that White Banners with Fay Bainter and Claude Rains came out in 1938 and this is a film that I've seen mentioned a lot here on the boards, but I don't believe I've ever seen it on TCM's schedule (at least during the time that I've really been paying attention to and watching TCM's schedule).  I'd like to see this film. 

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3 hours ago, TikiSoo said:

I gotta pipe in here....I like Rooney for the most part, although I completely agree with all his negative aspects mentioned here. Rooney was manic the same way Jerry Lewis was manic-and (in my opinion) they often come across on film as "trying too hard". Both Lewis & Rooney were extremely talented and possibly just better suited to the stage.

When Rooney (& Lewis for that matter) ratchet themselves down in a more serious role, they can really emote. All of Rooney's Twilight Zone appearances are excellent.

But Rooney's portrayal of the Japanese neighbor in BREAKFAST AT TIFFANYS alone cancels out all his good performances combined. (and LOL choosing bulldog EG Robinson over Rooney....I would too!)

Rooney is absolutely atrocious in Breakfast at Tiffany's, a film that I otherwise enjoy.  I do not like Rooney's scenes however.  I know Rooney's character, Mr. Yunioshi, is in Truman Capote's original story and he's supposed to be Holly Golightly's exasperated Japanese landlord.  Rooney does the exasperated landlord bit well, it's just the yellow faced, stereotypical caricature that is cringe-worthy.  I would expect something like this in the propaganda films of the 1940s, or even in the Looney Tunes shorts from that era, but I feel that by 1961, during the Civil Rights Era no less, that society would have progressed beyond this representation.  

If Blake Edwards really wanted Rooney in the film, he could have used some creative license and just made Rooney the irritated, Caucasian, landlord and left the yellow face, buck teeth and thick glasses out of it.  Edwards already took license with Holly Golighty's character in order to better suit Audrey Hepburn's persona, why not do it with Yunioshi's character too? I don't know what Edwards or Rooney were thinking with this film.

I've read articles before where Edwards states that he regrets this portrayal.  Whereas, Rooney always states that he was disappointed that people felt this way about his performance. 

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10 hours ago, speedracer5 said:

I read somewhere that Errol Flynn used to go with Rooney to the nightclubs as his "wingman."  Flynn would be the absolute worst wingman.  Yeah, you could use Flynn  to attract the ladies, but who is going to choose to go home with Mickey Rooney with Errol Flynn standing there? 

One thing I'll say in Rooney's favour regarding his relationship with Errol Flynn.

When Errol died he was washed up in the film industry. King of the Hollywood mountain that he once may have been, few of his former friends or associates showed up at his funeral.

Mickey Rooney was one of his pall bearers.

I came across this photo, perhaps the only time I've seen Flynn in a shot with Cary Grant

Errol-Cary-Grant-.jpg

 

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i don't know that WHITE BANNERS has ever shown on TCM, because it's one I keep an eye out for as well.

I've tried to like JEZEBEL, but I just cannot.

edit: The best film of 1938 is DEFINITELY THE ADVENTURES OF ROBIN HOOD. I also love BRINGING UP BABY.

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11 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

Thanks for the Memory (1938) -

thanks-for-the-memory-movie-poster-md.jp 

Another film from the early Bob Hope days in which his screen character was dapper. His early films, for the most part, aren't much as far as entertainment is concerned, slight musical comedy concoctions from Paramount.

The Cat and the Canary would be the film that would start to change Hope's screen persona. He'd still be dapper in appearance (that would change within a few years) but there would be fraidy cat aspects to his characterization, with his nervous wise cracks a perfect counter balance to the mystery aspects of that old house chiller.

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7 minutes ago, TomJH said:

One thing I'll say in Rooney's favour regarding his relationship with Errol Flynn.

When Errol died he was washed up in the film industry. King of the Hollywood mountain that he once may have been, few of his former friends or associates showed up at his funeral.

Mickey Rooney was one of his pall bearers.

I came across this photo, perhaps the only time I've seen Flynn in a shot with Cary Grant

Errol-Cary-Grant-.jpg

 

I have read that Rooney did show up at Flynn's funeral and it seems that it was a genuine show of respect for his friend and I do appreciate that.  I don't dislike Rooney 100% of the time, sometime he seems to have his moments.  Every time I saw Rooney interviewed later in life, he always sounded so angry.  His Private Screenings interview with Robert Osborne was intense.  Speaking of Private Screenings, I wish TCM would re-air all of them or make them available to stream or something.  There are so many episodes of that program that I haven't seen and many of them are some of the last interviews these classic film stars ever did. 

Looking at the picture of Flynn and Cary Grant... The caption states: "A merry foursome when all was gay at a recent party.  Mary Brian, Cary Grant and the Errol Flynns, who are now planning a trip."  Is it just Errol and his wife who are planning the trip? Or all four of them? If so, I wonder if they ever went on said trip and if so, where did they go?

 

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3 minutes ago, TomJH said:

Another film from the early Bob Hope days in which his screen character was dapper. His early films, for the most part, aren't much as far as entertainment is concerned, slight musical comedy concoctions from Paramount.

The Cat and the Canary would be the film that would start to change Hope's screen persona. He'd still be dapper in appearance (that would change within a few years) but there would be fraidy cat aspects to his characterization, with his nervous wise cracks a perfect counter balance to the mystery aspects of that old house chiller.

I love The Cat and the Canary.  It's such a fun film.  I'd love to see the other films that Bob Hope and Paulette Goddard made together.

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6 minutes ago, speedracer5 said:

I love The Cat and the Canary.  It's such a fun film.  I'd love to see the other films that Bob Hope and Paulette Goddard made together.

Speedy, if you love Cat and the Canary then you have to see Ghost Breakers, the followup reunion that Hope and Goddard made right afterward. If anything Ghost has far more eerie atmosphere (terrific sets of a haunted castle, with wonderful photography and musical accompaniment). The "horror" aspects of the film, which includes a zombie, are played for thrills, too, not cheap laughs, making the film all the more effective. Hope and Goddard have great chemistry and are one of my favourite screen teams in this film. She really was a charmer.

ghost-breakers1.jpg

 

 

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I have to admit I do like the way Rooney always stood up for Flynn after the ridiculous rumors about Flynn being a Nazi spy started circulating around. So Rooney did have his good points. 

It's unfortunate though that he seemed to be clueless about just how offensive his portrait of Mr. Yunioshi in BREAKFAST AT TIFFANY'S really was.

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3 hours ago, speedracer5 said:

I really wish Jezebel had been shot in color.  I think Bette's scandalous red dress in a sea of white (I think white was what she was expected to wear) would have had more of an impact.  

I feel the opposite....even with the B&W quality to it I can see through it and know the color of the dress is red and that's the brilliance of it.

JEZEBEL has always been one of my favorites anyway. Julie was the pre-cursor to Scarlett O'Hara, and while both women could be very self-centered and selfish when they wanted to be they could also be sacrificing and strong when the occasion called for it.

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There Goes My Heart (1938) - Routine romantic comedy from United Artists, producer Hal Roach, and director Norman Z. McLeod. Bored and sheltered rich girl Joan Butterfield (Virginia Bruce) sneaks off of her luxury yacht home where her grandfather and guardian Cyrus (Claude Gillingwater) has commanded she remain. She ends up rooming with a wacky girl she meets, Peggy (Patsy Kelly), who also gets her a job at a department store: Butterfield's, the flagship store of the chain owned by her family. Meanwhile, newspaper reporter Bill Spencer (Fredric March) is tasked with finding the reclusive and elusive Miss Butterfield for an article exclusive, and when the two meet, the inevitable romantic sparks ignite. Also featuring Alan Mowbray, Eugene Pallette, Nancy Carroll, Arthur Lake, Etienne Girardot, Robert Armstrong, Irving Pichel, J. Farrell MacDonald, Marjorie Main, Irving Bacon, and Harry Langdon.

The by-the-numbers script and uninspired direction are boosted a bit by the good cast, especially any scene with Patsy Kelly. I also liked seeing former major film stars Carroll and Langdon in small roles. The movie earned an Oscar nomination for Best Score (Marvin Hatley). (6/10)

Source: TCM.

theregoesmyheart1938_92761_678x381_08302

patsy_kelly___there_goes_my_heart.jpg

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Damn it. I was wrong about when THE STRIP came on. Got there for the last minute and a half, and I had forgotten the surprise at the end

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6 hours ago, speedracer5 said:

Rooney is absolutely atrocious in Breakfast at Tiffany's, a film that I otherwise enjoy.  I do not like Rooney's scenes however.  I know Rooney's character, Mr. Yunioshi, is in Truman Capote's original story and he's supposed to be Holly Golightly's exasperated Japanese landlord.  Rooney does the exasperated landlord bit well, it's just the yellow faced, stereotypical caricature that is cringe-worthy.  I would expect something like this in the propaganda films of the 1940s, or even in the Looney Tunes shorts from that era, but I feel that by 1961, during the Civil Rights Era no less, that society would have progressed beyond this representation.  

If Blake Edwards really wanted Rooney in the film, he could have used some creative license and just made Rooney the irritated, Caucasian, landlord and left the yellow face, buck teeth and thick glasses out of it.  Edwards already took license with Holly Golighty's character in order to better suit Audrey Hepburn's persona, why not do it with Yunioshi's character too? I don't know what Edwards or Rooney were thinking with this film.

I've read articles before where Edwards states that he regrets this portrayal.  Whereas, Rooney always states that he was disappointed that people felt this way about his performance. 

Holly's character isnt much different than the book (I was surprised when I read it as I thought it was toned down for the censors) The only major changes made were Paul and the ending.  I dont think any changes were made to suit Audrey.

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Call me a superficial, but the main (only?) thing I remember about the differences between the book and movie versions of Holly Golightly is that the book Holly is blonde.

I could never quite get past that.

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34 minutes ago, LornaHansonForbes said:

Call me a superficial, but the main (only?) thing I remember about the differences between the book and movie versions of Holly Golightly is that the book Holly is blonde.

I could never quite get past that.

LOL I dont remember that part.....

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Trade Winds (1938) - Offbeat romantic comedy from United artists, producer Walter Wanger, and director Tay Garnett. After San Francisco society girl Kay Kerrigan (Joan Bennett) is involved in a murder, she fakes her death and heads to the Far East. When it's discovered that she's still alive, detective Sam Wye (Fredric March) is hired to track her down, and he's followed by uptight policeman Ben Blodgett (Ralph Bellamy) and Sam's secretary Jean (Ann Sothern). Sam quickly finds Kay, but they fall for each other, and try to outwit and outrun the authorities. Also featuring Thomas Mitchell, Sidney Blackmer, Robert Elliott, Joyce Compton, Richard Tucker, Dorothy Comingore, Wilma Francis, Patricia Farr, Ethelreda Leopold, Dorothy Tree, and Kay Linaker.

This movie threw me for a loop. It begins like a serious, moody proto-noir, but changes into a sharp-witted, unpredictable rom-com. March seems to have fun as the Lothario detective, and Bennett looks good transitioning from blonde to brunette. Sothern is terrific, and makes me wish I'd seen her in more. Ralph Bellamy gives the most outlandish performance, one of those that seem at first like a ridiculously overdone ham job, but about midway through the picture it clicks, and he ends up being the funniest person in the movie.  (7/10)

Source: TCM.

image84.jpg

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1 hour ago, LawrenceA said:

Trade Winds (1938) -

image84.jpg

Trade Winds is a fun comedy mystery romp with an international globe trotting appeal. My favourite scene is when Fredric March is playing the piano, oblivious to the fact that a cobra has slithered into the room and hovers near him. Joan Bennett would forever be a brunette after this film, and that darker hair looks better on her than when she was a blonde. Ann Sothern and a broad strokes Ralph Bellamy are both a hoot in support.

My main complaint about the film is the terrible rear screen projection of this studio made "globe trotter," far more obvious than in most films.

 

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Re-watched LIBELED LADY (1936) last night. Boy, I forgot just how much I really love this movie. Spencer Tracy, Jean Harlow, William Powell, & Myrna Loy. What a cast. I think the four of them play off of each other really well. 

Image result for libeled lady 1936

 

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41 minutes ago, TomJH said:

My main complaint about the film is the terrible rear screen projection of this studio made "globe trotter," far more obvious than in most films.

I almost mentioned this myself, but I've noticed a lot of bad rear-screen projection in these 1938 movies.

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Bluebeard's Eighth Wife (1938) - Very enjoyable romantic comedy from Paramount Pictures, writers Charles Brackett & Billy Wilder, and director Ernst Lubitsch. Wealthy American tycoon Michael Brandon (Gary Cooper) meets cash-strapped noblewoman Nicole De Loiselle on the French Riviera and immediately falls for her. He's determined to marry her, and her money hungry father (Edward Everett Horton) wants the money sure to come with a marriage, but Nicole is of course more than a little reluctant. Their off-kilter courtship gets more complicated when Nicole learns that Michael's been married seven times before. Also featuring David Niven, Elizabeth Patterson, Warren Hymer, Franklin Pangborn, Herman Bing, Lawrence Grant, Lionel Pape, Leon Ames, and Sacha Guitry.

Classy and sophisticated thanks to that "Lubitsch touch", and displaying a rapier wit thanks to the script by Brackett and Wilder, this is a real gem in a sea of romantic comedy mediocrity from 1938. Cooper and Colbert are both very good, and display excellent chemistry. This movie was discussed at length in this thread already, and I don't have much to add, other than to say that I recommend it.  (8/10)

Source: TCM.

MV5BMzIzZDY4YWItZWJkMS00OTg5LTgxMWYtZWIy

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Beauty and the Beast (2017) - Excruciating musical fantasy from Disney and director Bill Condon. A live-action retelling of the 1991 animated hit, the story follows village girl Belle (Emma Watson) who becomes the prisoner of a cursed prince (Dan Stevens), leading to unexpected romance and redemption. Also featuring Luke Evans, Josh Gad, Kevin Kline, and in largely voice roles, Ian McKellen, Ewan McGregor, Stanley Tucci, Audra McDonald, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, and Emma Thompson. 

This was the monster hit of most of 2017, finally supplanted from the #1 spot by Star Wars: The Last Jedi. I've discussed elsewhere on the boards about my lack of love for the 1991 animated Disney take on this fairy tale, but that version is miles better than this irritating, CGI waste. I'm not sure how many of the songs are repeated from the old film (it's been 26 years since I've seen it), but I don't recall them all making me want to stab forks into my ears like this film's music did. The Beast CGI is alternately terrible looking and somehow softened, so that he's often more cute than monstrous. Watson, the longtime Harry Potter film regular, is a good actress, and in no way unattractive, but she's not the heart-stopping beauty that her character is continuously described as being here. Plus, she still greatly resembles her Hermione days, so much of the film's romantic scenes are between a leading lady who looks 12 years old and a leading man that looks like a poorly-rendered cartoon character. Luke Evans seems to be having a blast as the vain Gaston, but the less said about Josh Gad's obnoxious comic relief, the better. In the end, I found this overstuffed and yet dull, with nothing original to say, only repeated more loudly, and indicative of the worst tendencies in Disney's cash-grab ethos. But they made a ton of money, so what do I know?  (4/10)

Source: Disney Blu-ray. If it had bonus features, I wouldn't know since I couldn't get the disc out of my player fast enough.

image_58c5efc8.jpeg?region=0,0,512,288

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12 minutes ago, LawrenceA said:

Beauty and the Beast (2017) - Excruciating musical fantasy from Disney and director Bill Condon. A live-action retelling of the 1991 animated hit, the story follows village girl Belle (Emma Watson) who becomes the prisoner of a cursed prince (Dan Stevens), leading to unexpected romance and redemption. Also featuring Luke Evans, Josh Gad, Kevin Kline, and in largely voice roles, Ian McKellen, Ewan McGregor, Stanley Tucci, Audra McDonald, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, and Emma Thompson. 

This was the monster hit of most of 2017, finally supplanted from the #1 spot by Star Wars: The Last Jedi. I've discussed elsewhere on the boards about my lack of love for the 1991 animated Disney take on this fairy tale, but that version is miles better than this irritating, CGI waste. I'm not sure how many of the songs are repeated from the old film (it's been 26 years since I've seen it), but I don't recall them all making me want to stab forks into my ears like this film's music did. The Beast CGI is alternately terrible looking and somehow softened, so that he's often more cute than monstrous. Watson, the longtime Harry Potter film regular, is a good actress, and in no way unattractive, but she's not the heart-stopping beauty that her character is continuously described as being here. Plus, she still greatly resembles her Hermione days, so much of the film's romantic scenes are between a leading lady who looks 12 years old and a leading man that looks like a poorly-rendered cartoon character. Luke Evans seems to be having a blast as the vain Gaston, but the less said about Josh Gad's obnoxious comic relief, the better. In the end, I found this overstuffed and yet dull, with nothing original to say, only repeated more loudly, and indicative of the worst tendencies in Disney's cash-grab ethos. But they made a ton of money, so what do I know?  (4/10)

Source: Disney Blu-ray. If it had bonus features, I wouldn't know since I couldn't get the disc out of my player fast enough.

image_58c5efc8.jpeg?region=0,0,512,288

If I'm not mistaken, this new version retains all the songs that the 1991 film had, plus the addition of three new ones... and despite would- be splashy staging, all the songs played better and were more tuneful in 1991. Anyway, I liked this a little more than you, but I found it to be a frustrating film in many ways. I was young enough to grow up with the 1991 film, indeed it remains a favorite. But this new version just adds so much unnecessary padding. New songs, that's fine, but when you are expanding a simple story by 40 minutes, there are bound to be troubles. It strains too hard, and comes out being rather worse for wear. At least the costumes and sets were nice (and it was a pleasure to see Kevin Kline again)

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