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Everything posted by jamesjazzguitar

  1. Well this is a case of type casting an actor would clearly wish to avoid. "Hey casting director, we need someone that patronizes or picks on a disabled person,,, OK, I'll call on Ray Teal,,,, he is good at taking a punch!
  2. What get out of your post is this: If you are a man ensure your friends don't look as good as Bill Holden! But really I agree with your take here. Holden is a low level cad and clearly not a major heal or criminal like many film noir men. He indeed was rather clueless like Mitchum was in Angel Face. Compare that to Mitchum in Out of The Past. At the end he goes with Kathy but he had to know she would get very upset once she knew he put her in a trap. Thus he was willing to face his punishment as defined by the noir world. In Sunset Boulevard and Angel Face the noir man just wanted to get away from the noir world but forget to look over his shoulder! Not a good idea with those dames.
  3. Well I was waiting for someone to comment before I do so thanks. I also find Lawrence to be a first rate movie and really enjoy it while I only like GWTW. The first hour or so is very good but it is too much of a soap opera for my taste. But since Olivia is one of my favorite actresses I do find her performance mesmerizing.
  4. Note sure why you say 'actually'. To me the line ',,,lost your arms for nothing!' has a very simlar theme to 'one more Johnny Rocco' from Key Largo. i.e. removing the Nazis was "for nothing" because the commies are as big of a threat if not more so. So in your view was the REAL reason the comment OR just to defend a friend in need like Homer?
  5. Wow. I see that the issue I raised related to the Andrews slug has created a lot of interesting discussions. But it looks like I missed what was going on in this scene. I compared the scene to Bogie's reaction in Key Largo - one less Johnny Rocco doesn't make a difference. In other words I didn't view the Teal character as being Pro-Nazi but just saying the USA went to war to kill a Rocco (Nazis), only to face another Rocco (Soviets) a short time later and thus was just an insolationist. I wouldn't of punched someone that was making a point simliar to Bogie's in Key Largo (but Becall does call him a coward which does lead Bogie to take action against Rocco), but I would a pro-Nazi. I'll have to watch that Teal scene more closely and really listen to the dialog next time (instead of just waiting to see the punch!).
  6. Well based on a quick check of the appendix from the book Film Noir (Ward Silver), Woolrich has the most movie writer credits (11). Second to him would be Raymond Chandler with 10.
  7. Well for the MTM show it is odd since that show's theme song had a line like 'your going to make it on your own'. (If my memory is correct). i.e. the show was born out of the women's lib movement.
  8. Thanks for the info. Well no wonder a common theme of the MTM show what that Mary was always a little down about not being able to get married. She couldn't even keep a guy 25 or so more years older than her! Was it that 70's hairdue?
  9. Aryes was born in 1908 and the MTM show ran from 1970 - 1977. So even in the first season Aryes would of been 62 and the Mary character was in her early 30s. Are you sure he was one of her boyfriends? Sounds like he would of been her mother's boyfriend but of course older men with younger women in film and TV isn't odd.
  10. You say WWII was fully supported by the American people but that isn't the full story. After we were attacked WWII was fully supported but prior to Dec 7th 1941 entering the war in Europe wasn't. As I said, the movie was 'radical' for the time because it has a scene that questions the value of defeating 'evil'. Key Largo has the same type of theme when Bogie makes the comment about the killing of one more Johnny Rocco. WWII didn't defeat evil. Only a short time after the end of WWII many Americans questioned whether the USA should of just let the Nazis and Commies destroy each other. One of the key themes of film noir is disillusion and this is highly tied to the fact that WWII didn't really "solve" anything as it relates to the destruction of evil. So I see a connection between disillusion and post war feelings associated with WWII, Vietnam, Iraq, Korea, etc..
  11. Like I said Holden brings a lot of charm to the role and thus we agree that Joe is a very likeable guy. Wilder uses that Holden charm in a very similar way Hitchcock used Grant's charm in movies like Notorious and Suspicion. In many ways the guys are cads but they are very likeable ones (and for the ladies there is that added bonus that, as you say, they are 'so damm good looking'). So I would be Joe's buddy and have a drink with him, pal around with the guy, but like the producer he asked for money from I wouldn't lend Joe money, let him use my car or meet my girlfriend! As for Betty, of course women are not 'items to be kept' but someone decided that the plot line would have Betty be the girlfriend of Joe's only friend in the movie (just the facts Jack Webb). The plot could of just had Joe meet Betty another way. To me the reason is too taint Joe's character. We appear to still disagree about Joe's lie to Norma about her screenplay. That act was very cruel given the mental state of Norma. Norma would of just died with her delusions. Instead Joe flames the fire of her desire to make a comeback. This is the trigger that leads to the end of both Joe and Norma. OK, Joe wasn't aware of that at the time and once he found out he felt bad about it (which as I said was why he stayed with Norma). So I do see why Joe should be given a break; i.e. it is fair to assume Joe wouldn't of tried to scam Norma on the screenplay IF Joe had know the deepness of her mental illness. BUT that is key to the NOIR world here. Thus Joe is like like Jeff in Out of The Past. Jeff didn't think the simple act of deceiving the gangster because he fell for a dame would result in his fall.
  12. I clearly see the points you are making and I'm not hoping for a remake (just having fun discussion the 'what if'). A key point to the movie was the 'what was gained by war' angle. Remember how Dana's character loses his "soda jerk" job by punching a customer. Wel I assume the rant from that customer was 'radical' to most Americans at the time; i.e. that while war defeated the evil Nazis it didn't solve anything the evil commies (Soviets) just replaced the Nazis. We see this theme repeated in other movies at the time (Key Largo is an example). Well that angle would fit right in with our 2 middle east wars. No one knows if these wars will result in less conflict (yea, peace) in these areas over the long run and a more safe America. But yes the impact the movie made on a country getting back to 'normal' after a conflict like WWII cannot be repeat. In many ways that is a good thing.
  13. My view with regards to why did Hollywood negatively portray group 'X' is that there is no why. I.e.. Films have foreign setting and thus characters and they showed those characters in a way they felt most Americans pictured the characters of foreign lands. (Amercans at the time didn't travel the world much, didn't have many travel shows, no travel network, the internet and other ways to really learn about foreign cultures). So hey, we need to give that Arab 'vibe'; yea, lets have a snake charmer. So the series didn't address the 'why' because there is no 'why' to address.
  14. I can see the story about 3 men coming back from our middle east wars to the current state of the USA. We have the older guy coming back to join his former company but finding out his company is outsourcing a lot of jobs and doing other shady things. He is angry about how his company doesn't have the same values it had when he left. You know play up the anti-coporation angle. Then the middle aged guy comes back and cannot find a job. That was a big part of the original movie and unemployment is worst today (and I assume more relevant), than in was in 1946. The disable man's story is relevant in any time (but finding an actor to repeat that role,,,, wow,,, that was a one of a kind role and it would be very difficult to find an actual disable vet that could come close to the original). Oh and the love stories can be milked in any time period.
  15. Note that I said that Joe Gillis was a deadbeat and a USER (not a loser). I wouldn't knock down someone that was just unemployed but Joe was spoiled. He didn't appear willing to take another type of job (any type), to pay his own bills. He also didn't need that nice car. It wasn't like the repo-men were taking away Joe's dinner. This was a nice car. Way too nice for an unemployed man with little options like Joe. I find this sentence interesting: "Yet somehow gets caught in Gloria Swanson's web and cannot seem to escape". Did we watch the same movie? Where does 'yet somehow' come from? That first scene between Joe and Norma says a lot about the lack of character of Joe. He clearly knows Norma's screenplay is crap but tells her lies once he understands that he can milk her for some money. So Joe was NOT traped by Norma's web but instead he INITIALLY traps Norma by telling her what she wants to hear. That deception is the key bad act that Joe will be punished for in the noir world he has entered. Because Joe is weak and spineless (a term taken from the book Film Noir by Ward Silver), he gets traped by Norma. I.e. she turns the tables around on him. As Norma starts to go deeper and deeper into dispair one does see the good side of Joe. He has enough unselfish feelings to stay with her so she doesn't kill herself. But in the noir world a turnaround this late in the game cannot undo one's prior actions and thus Joe is gunned down by Norma. Yea, that was too harsh a punishment for Joe but in many ways it was noir justice due to the way Joe conned Norma at the start. Note: telling a sane person there work is better than it really is isn't that 'bad' of an act but with an insane person like Norma it was a very cruel act. The final ending makes this clear. In many ways Joe kills Norma also. I should also point out that Joe steals the girl of his friend. Hey, I didn't write the sceenplay but that is just another example of where Joe lacked character. Otherwise why add that to the plot? Like I say Holden was very charming as Joe and this give the appearance that he is a complex character. But at the end of the day Joe is nothing more than a cad.
  16. As time marches on in all art forms how well creative 'stars' from prior generations will be known or not is driven by many factors. Of course there is the sheer talent of the star but there are also non talent factors like how they died (dying young is a good way to be remembered but I wouldn't recommend it as a career move!), as well as various scandals. Now this might only be how I frame things, but I see layers or tiers of stars from each generation (or time period), with a top layer that will always have an historical presence, a second layer that dims over time and than everyone else that only the direhards (i.e. those that make an effort to seek out), will know about. The good think about the future is that it will be technically easier for subsequent generations to get 'old' content. This was NOT true when I was growing up in the 80s. So in most cases the content will be there IF one wishes to seek it out (and if can afford it). Like we see today with cable TV and over 100 stations to pick from, where there are more options one often needs direction (a guide) to lead one to the gold. But at the same time these 'guides' tend to highlight the top layer and some of this second layer and thus in someways contribute to the loss of interest in anything beyond that. As for Mickey Rooney my guess is that he will be most remembered for the movies he made with Judy Garland (someone more likely to be remembered because she was a film star, a music star and she has that 'scandal' quality associated with her life). Bing Crosby? Well to me he is one of the top 3 male entertainer of the 20th century. But I can see him fading and being pushed to a lower tier by someone like Frank Sinatra since Frank had a more interesting tabloid type life.
  17. I agree that The Unfaithful wasn't bad but that isn't high praise. I just felt the movie needed some more and that 'more' was missing. Arden was abiout the only one to really bring a level of energy to the movie and her role was key to the plot. The creep role of the art dealer (Barrow?), was interesting but it never lead to much. As for the plot there is a major difference between The Unfaithful and The Letter as it relates to the death and thus The Unfaithful ends up being just a couple drama instead of a noir crime type picture when all is said and done. I would of had the husband kill Barrow, but hey, I didn't write the screenplay!
  18. I understand the point you are making but can Holden's character in SB be considered a hero? I don't see anything heroic in this guy. He really is a deadbeat and a user. This is one of my favorite movies. What is key is that Holden does have a lot of charm. So in that respect one wants to make him a hero. For example, when he is able to ditch the repo men to keep his car. We are pulling for him to get away but at the same time we know that this is NOT the character of your standard hero. Thus when he is shot at the end it is a just ending for the type of person he was.
  19. Don't forget The Uninvited with Ray Milland, Ruth Hussy and Gail Russell made in 44.
  20. When one has to use 'total' or 'pure' or some other similar term to further define something it really limits any discussion unless as you noted the specific criteria are listed. The term 'noir' has many definitions; some very limited (e.g. must be BW), to very broad ones. While I agree with your comment 'And yet they're indisputably "noir"', the fact this discussion occurs very often at this forum clearly shows that nothing is 'indisputable' by definition!
  21. Well I did enjoy the part of the movie at the piano player's home where they were jamming, playing Blue Moon. His blond girl 'friend' was playing a really nice guitar but I couldn't tell what kind it was. There was another guitar player and he was playing some very cool riffs. It was a hip version of Blue Moon that the 'dull blind guy' commented on when Joan came into the scene. Overall the movies wasn't that good only then Joan's legs.
  22. The image isn't insulting to Monroe unless one believes the entire "Monroe as an icon" movement is insulting since sex is what Monroe was all about. I find it hard to believe that one cannot see the sexist aspect associated with the Monroe persona. e.g. the not very bright, vulnerable sexy blond. I don't make a big deal out of that (i.e. it is what it is), but it is also silly to pretend otherwise. But if one is going to celebrate Monroe one of course has to capture that persona. Otherwise there isn't any other reason to celebrate her. i.e. that persona is the only reason she is an icon other than her young death. I just don't think a large statute showing her dead would have the same impact.
  23. I see the point you are making and I overstated my point; Yes, she have a negative impact on many of the men in her life but the one that is the biggest fall, from a noir perspective, is the lawyer. Yes, she killed her ex-boyfriend but she didn't have to use her femme fatale powers to do that; she used a gun. In this relationship the boyfriend had the power over her, and not the other way around. The husband was weak and milk toast. So it didn't take much for him to fall and he didn't fall far. But the lawyer is shown to be a man of honor. One is given the impression he is a stand up guy. The English law setting (e.g. the wigs and attire), add to the impression of a system of honor, one in which this lawyer is a member. For him to chuck his honor to help Leslie makes him the biggest fall guy of this femme fatale of the ages.
  24. You posted this " I just don't transfer my own interpretations (that have no validity) onto his films in order to find things that are either not there or that the filmmaker didn't intend". Isn't the post I'm replying to full of your own interpretations?
  25. Can you explain what you mean by 'banned'? I don't think any of the movies or TV shows you mentioned have been banned as I defined banned. i.e. the FDC doesn't permit them to be shown. Instead stations that are privately owned have decided NOT to show certain material. That is their choice and thus no freedoms are being restricted. Also if someone that has the the copyrights to certain content decides not to allow the commerical sale of said material they have that right since they own the copyright. Now often I do NOT agree with these decisions. i.e. I say show the material or make it available to the public. But nothing is being banned. All we are seeing is the free market at work. Edited by: jamesjazzguitar on Jul 15, 2011 8:02 PM
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