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Everything posted by jamesjazzguitar

  1. Here TopBilled does raise a valid point; if the main movies a 'star' is famous for are secondary roles should they be SOTM? While I believe Lansbury is a fine actress and I find her very attractive in those early years (but I will admit she has a unique sexual attraction to me verses, say, an Ava, Lana or Rita,), it is true that the movies I enjoy Lansbury in, she is NOT the main star. So TopBill has a solid case that Lansbury is what I call a second tier star. I would define Van Helfin as an actor I define as a second tier star. Yea, Van was the lead actor in many movies but he was typically teamed with a major female star (e.g. Stanwyck), that was a lot bigger star than he was. This is similar with Lansbury's best work. Thus it is a fair assumption that a primary reason Lansbury is SOTM is because she is still with us and thaat she is very well known because of her TV work and long career in the industry. While she clearly isn't a Garbo, Davis, DeHavilland, etc... since I like many of these films I don't have a issue with her being SOTM.
  2. Here is a definition of genre I found on Google: "a class or category of artistic endeavor having particular form, content, technique, or the like". TCM clearly believes their is a "film noir - gangster" genre since we are posting in a forum called that. Yea, TCM had to add 'gangster' to cover their bets but that just makes my point about the overlap between various genres. Look at all the categories under the Genre Forum list. There is a lot of overlap. i.e. one could classify a specific movie in more than one of the genre categories mentioned. To classic movies fans (e.g. the people at CFU) the term 'noir' clearly communicates films that have 'a particular form, content, technique or the like'. I do agree that when they were making these films they didn't make them as noir movies like they would make westerns or horror movies for example (especially cheap ones). So if the main point was that noir wasn't a genre when the movies we label today as noir where made, I agree 100%. and yea, I can be somewhat contentious. But that is only because I'm a noir type guy. Edited by: jamesjazzguitar on Dec 31, 2011 7:31 PM
  3. What about Gunda Din? I know that it was filmed in the Alabama Hills outside of Lone Pine California (and I have hiked to many of the sites). Of course some of the indoor scenes could of been done back in Studio City.
  4. What the the official goddess isn't Katherine Hepburn?
  5. Is there anything to back up that statement by Hopper? I find it hard to believe. First the artist (e.g. the band, singer or musician), doesn't have complete control over the rights. Most of the time the record company has more control over the rights than the artist. So the artist would have to ask the record company for permission. I can see the record company granting these rights if it helped promote the artist but otherwise why would they give away the use of their product for nothing.
  6. Securing rights to use 'hip' (popular), rock music might have been an issue. One idea I had is that the melody of rock songs are often carried only by the vocals; i.e. without the vocals there isn't a very strong melody. For background music vocals often get in the way (i.e. are too much of a distraction and can clash with the dialog). For example, it is very common in the pre-rock era for a song to be introduced with a vocal (e.g. the lead actress, even if not much of a singer, sings a song), and then for an instrumental of this song to be played as background music during much of the film. i.e. they get the melody in your head using the vocals (which is the easiest way for most, even musicians), and then carry this theme or mood on by playing the instrumental. Related to retaining rights, one simple reason might just be money. Studios purchased the rights to use songs and often they could use them in movie after movie for a certain period of time without having to pay much in royalties. So it saved money to use the same songs over and over again.
  7. Well I have found that if I focuses on what I feel they were really trying to communicate instead of pointing out the folly associated with their bombastic comments, the odds increase that there can be some type of fruitful discussion. You are right that they have little to defend (as it relates to bombastic comments), but often they do have very valid points if one takes those comments with a grain (or lump!), of salt.
  8. Sorry I don't understand your point or what you are trying to communicate when you say that there is 'no real Genre for Film Noir'. Are you saying there is a real genre for western, or comedy etc..? As soon as one uses the term 'real' I find folly. Again, who defines what the real genres are and what the criteria is for these real gernes? Noir is a genre just like westerns, drama, romantic comedy, etc in that a genre has certain characterizes, BUT, there is wiggle room related to these characterizes in any genre. There is also a degree of overlap. I saw this in the discussion about screwball comedies and romantic comedies. I believe one can do what you are doing with Noir for any genre; Come up with specific criteria and then say these are movies are the true to this criteria and those that are not. I do find all of this interesting but it has noting to do with determining what is real or not unless a specific 3rd party source is named (e.g. AFI defines a western as ,,,,,,), and even then this is just the opinion of one group.
  9. Yes, welcome to the site and happy new year. I have been here a few years now and I love it. First one learns a lot about classic movies. Now compared to the average Joe I'm an expert of films from the 30 - 60 but once I got here I found a lot of people with more knowledge than me. So one learns a lot about movies they were NOT aware of, or gets insight into a film they have seen. Second everyone has an opinion. So it is interesting to heard what other classic movie fans like or dislike. Yea, like any family we have disagreements but typically they are keep under control.
  10. I'm sure you are aware that people here just like to make over the top statements with no basis of truth. Comments like "TCM only mostly show Post 1960 movies" or "all post 1980 movies are garbage" etc... I really don't think doing research would help, since I'm assuming the poster knows they are posting over the top statements; i.e. they do NOT really believe what they are posting, but only use terms like 'mostly' or 'all' to push their point. Sadly this is a very common method people use in discussion, polices especially. They wish to be heard and feel using over stated terms is more likely to be heard. Often I just ignore those terms and try to focus on what I believe they are trying to communicate. e.g. that TCM shows too many post 1960 movies or that a majority of post 1980 movies are garbage. I'm not sure they wish to be "pleasantly surprised" by facts; they just want to be angry and heard. But keep up the effort. Maybe some of it will stick.
  11. I'm somewhat surprised to see anyone remember Yes. I like the band and they were a transition band for me - taking me from rock to jazz a few decades ago. Their songs are not easy to play.
  12. I don't think that dress would last long in the wild, wild west but it sure is nice to look at.
  13. I would be very surprised if films like That's Entertainment is causing you to neglect the other gems that were produced in the same period. It clearly didn't cause me to neglect the other movies MGM created during the golden era or musicals by other studios and based on your knowledge of classic movies I'm sure it didn't either. Frankly I fault those that let marketing drive their behavior than the ones doing the marketing, especially in the Internet era where anyone with the will to seek information can find it. As for the movies themselves the main thing I found interesting is when they showed takes from actors that were not in the final film.
  14. Well my view is that The Thin Man Goes Home is the weakest of the 6. Another Thin Man does have too many characters, many good ones, grossly underutilized (e.g. Ruth Hussy). To me this just added too much confusion. But the kid did distract from the fun. I have seen Song of The Thin Man get a bad rap and continuing the so called general decline of the series but I don't agree with that POV. To me Song is #3. Of course I'm the jazz man and thus I like the music but I also like Wynn and Meadows and of course the movie has the noir icon Gloria Grahame. Plus the plot isn't too much 'all over the place'. But the kid is back but to a lot less of a degree.
  15. Well it looks like I was wrong if the term co-staring was really used for Bond in The Searchers. I'm surprised Wayne's contract would allow that. Of course Ford loved to pick on Wayne so I wonder if that has something to do with it. I can see Hunter getting a co-staring tag but not anyone else in the film.
  16. Well by definition a co-star is someone that gets first billing ranking; e.g. Libel Lady where Tracy and Powell are co-stars. Generally if one is NOT listed either prior to the title of the movie or in the first screen after the title they are not the star of the movie. They are listed in the following screen as a supporting player. Depending on their rank or contact they may get a bigger font on the supporting player screen but still they are supporting players. Of course there are exceptions to every rule. For example, when some of the major classic stars of the 30s - 50s played in movie of the 60s or 70. e.g. Stanwyck in Walk On The Wild Side; In these cases they are listed last with some type of special caption. I for one don't know how to classily an actor that get this type of billing. Generally I'm just happy to see a classic star in the movie.
  17. Well of course Dr Strangelove is a comedy. There are so many over the top lines and insane situations that could only occur in a comedy or a very camp drama (but these are typically low production quality films). What I find interesting in your reply here is your point about how an audience today would view the film verses one back in the 60s. I would of assume the opposite of what you imply; that today the movie and most of its scenes would clearly be seen as the farce it was but back in the 60s when there was a real fear of being nuked, some of the farce might be lost on the audience. Either way one of the greatest black comedies.
  18. Yea, Bond is one of the best western supporting players as well as a supporting player in many other genres. e.g. Tom in The Maltese Falcon etc.... What a fine actor. As for western supporting players I want to add Alan Hale and Guinn 'Big Boy' Williams to the list. They were the sidekicks of Errol Flynn in a few Warner westerns like Dodge City and Santa Fe Trail (more of a historical drama then a western). These two were very funny as Flynn buddies and helped lighten up these pictures. Of course Alan Hale was in many, many movies for Warners but most of those were not westerns since Cagney, Bogie or E.G. Robinson (main Warner male stars) didn't make a lot of westerns (and we can all be glad about that!).
  19. I find it very ironic that you use The Awful Truth as an example of a movie that is NOT serious. The movie was only about divorce. Yea, that isn't very serious. But I do understand where you are coming from. Note that the movie uses a dog (the good old Thin Man pub), instead of children related to the custody battle to help lighten up the movie. Who gets the dog can be made funny, while who gets the children would fall flat. So The Awful Truth is a great example of a movie about a serious topic that is anything but a serious movie.
  20. Well since I read all of your post (and of course you do the same for me ), I did remember that you said it was the best of all time a few weeks ago. But I didn't want to appear to be over the top so I put in the 'top 10' just to prevent those Garbo fans from attacking me! As for showing movies over and over; If they show Born Yesterday within the next 3 months of so it is going to become the next NBNW.
  21. Well since The Heiress has one of the top 10 or so best actress performances of all time, it should be shown a lot. But yea, if the original poster wasn't being sarcastic they don't watch TCM much.
  22. LoveForNoir makes some very solid points and yes, my guess would be that Audrey is a little more known than Kate because of Audrey's fashion connection. Audrey also has a big gay following because of her tie to fashion (e.g. I have had some young fashion designers ask to use some of my Audrey photos to help them in their designs). To me fashion has a stronger link back to the past then music or movies to younger generations. With music or movies younger people typically like what is 'pop'. While this is also true with fashion there is a strong pull for classic fashion and the reinvention of classic fashion into what is currently hip, from fashion designers. Thus the industry itself promotes classic fashion. We don't see this with music or movies since the current sellers of these products do NOT wish you to buy 'old' stuff but their stuff. This keeps fashion icons like Audrey in the limelight. Kate is still very well known (as for as classic actresses) since she had such a long career but even this will die down as time passes on. While, someone like Monroe will continue to be pushed on generation after generation (for reasons that I don't agree with but understand).
  23. Well joe does make the point you are making in his post below when he mentions the western genre. But to me directors or producers that set out to make a western often made a so-so film. Like any genre to me the best westerns are those with great characters and stories that just happen to be set in the west. Take The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance; That is a great movie that just happens to be set in the west and about the west (western expansion and the taming of the west). In many ways the movie betrays the western genre; For example, take the killing of Valance. For that scene to be a "true" western it would have to be a fight at dawn between Wayne and Valance where Wayne draws faster than Valance and the hero wins. But instead we seen Wayne murder Valance. My point? Movies are often better (elevated), when they are NOT true to their genre. Edited by: jamesjazzguitar on Dec 30, 2011 2:05 PM Edited by: jamesjazzguitar on Dec 30, 2011 5:47 PM
  24. Well as a hugh Powell fan I thank TCM for having him as SOTM. Considering it was December (holiday month), TCM showed a lot of his movies. But I can understand the reaction; we love are stars and we want to see them get their due. I just wish Leslie Howard would be SOTM. If he was I would then complain they didn't show 38 of his films! Oh, wait, I don't think he made that many.
  25. Since joe and you imply a true noir must have a certain percent of noir lighting, the examples you give a good ones (as NOT being true noirs), since they fail to meet that definition. While noir lighting as settings are a noir factor for me they are only one factor. I also focus on the characters, and their relationships. The movies mentioned do have noir characters and relationships but I agree not much noir lighting. To me noir lighting was 'cool' in the early noirs of 40s (while it was still somewhat new) but after this it became a cheap way to make a movie get a noir feel. Make a movie with a so-so plot and characters but ensure there are scenes where there is a flashing neon sign in a run down motel room; Oh, we have true noir now (NOT!). I do agree The Big Heat is more of a crime drama than a noir, but in my world even if the director would of added in some additional noir lighting it would still be more of a crime drama. But there is a limited noir element in the film with the way Ford treats the women in the film. Gun Crazy is a noir to me because of the relationship between the two main characters and how it revolves around guns. That relationship is very noir even without the noir lighting. How about Out of the Past which was mentioned before; That is one of THE noirs because of its noir characters, relationship and plot but other than the San Francisco scenes there isn't a whole not of noir lighting.
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