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Posts posted by arpirose


    For sure it is TCm's worst month for films.  It is basically a rehash of most of the films that TCM shows regularly.  I say, 90% comes from MGM. Once a year, they show the Lost Weekend, (on Oscar month during the morning hours.) which is one of Ray Milland's best films.Thank goodness for DVRs. At the end of this month, they will have a Noir Marathon. They will play on February 27th.  Boy, do I miss Noir Alley. 

    I am looking forward to catch FOREVER AMBER, which I haven't seen 30 in years.

    I was so bored  with Oscar that I watched  the classic DOBIE GILLIS SHOWS on You Tube.  C'est La Vie.

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  2. CLAUDETTE COLBERT takes a bath in both THE SIGN OF THE CROSS 1932 AND CLEOPATRA 1934.  Both are pre code films.  In THE SIGN OF THE CROSS she takes a bath in **** milk, which is a sign of decadence through eyes of the director CECIL D.MILLE.



    Here is an article about Claudette and her pre code PERSONA.





  3. Spence;

    Boy, I went to the VILLAGE so often.  In fact, it was walking distance from our home, therefore, going to the village was a breeze. The FOX WESTWOOD THEATRE was the go to theatre as well as the PICKWOOD, which was on Pico Blvd. As for the Westwood cemetery, I never cared for its ambience. It is so cold looking with its bronze markers. It didn't have those wonderful statues that the gravesites that the HOLLYWOOD FOREVER CEMETERY has. Tyrone Power's gravesite is so beautiful with its long pool.


    There is the ART DECO MIRACLE MILE AND HANCOCK PARK, which may of the really old movie stars had mansions.


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  4. I am a former longtime resident of   LOS ANGELES.  I grew up there.  I went to University High School, where some of my classmates were Johanah Lancaster, Ronnie Lewis and Lorna Luft and Mirishe's daughter ( I did not know her personally.).  They didn't attend class at the same time.  Johanah Lancaster was super brainy as I recall. WE didn't think twice about their being celebrity kids.  They were one of us. I remember we had wonderful assemblies with the talent pool at the High School.  The Vietnam war was raging and that was one of the major concerns of the student body.

    I grew up in Westwood, which was a lovely little hamlet.  Our pride and joy was the University , UCLA.  I grew up in a college town.  The professors lived nearby. The original quad at UCLA is so beautiful with ROYCE HALL being at the center.  Those buildings were modeled after THE ROMANESQUE BUILDINGS and CHURCHES AT LOMBARDY, ITALY.  UCLA was the seat of higher learning for Los Angeles. Culture and learning came through the university, plus great athletics. The UCLA Cinema school is one of the best in the nation. UCLA has a well respected Medical School, which is in the forefront of research.

    Therefore, there is more to Hollywood than movies and celebrities.



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  5. If you want to see Harry Morgan be a sadistic killer, you should check out the film OUTSIDE THE WALL (1950) from Universal Films.  It stars Richard Basehart as the ex con who meets up with a bunch of killers including Morgan. It is a film that hardly anybody speaks about.  Maybe, due to its lack of exposure. However, it is worth the watch.

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    Archive for the ‘Christmas in July (1940)’ Category

    Since I’ve been busy for the past few days (not to mention that my brain feels like it’s completely fried out from work), I’ve become semi-obsessed with movies that run from about 60-75 minutes in length. I think they’re what the studios used to call “programmers”: b-movies that were the second feature on the bill, usually made in a short amount of time and with stock members of the studio’s acting stable. I’ve seen quite a few in the last couple of days–I find they fill in the space quite nicely between eating dinner and getting caught up on the latest Governor sex scandal.

    One of my favorites is 1932’s Union Depot, a Warner Brothers’ effort that stars Douglas Fairbanks Jr. and Joan Blondell. Since it’s a depression era pre-code, you get all the trimmings: there’s Ruth (Blondell), a chorus girl who’s down on her luck, bums (Fairbanks and Guy Kibbee), a drunk (the lovable Frank McHugh), a counterfeiter on the lam (Alan Hale) and not one, but two sleazy sub-plots! Hurray!


    Fairbanks and McHughThe beautiful Joan Blondellkibbee.jpg
    Fairbanks and McHugh, Blondell and Kibbee. The latter three are standard in any early 30’s WB movie.

    Union Depot is reminiscent of 1932’s Grand Hotel, except that it’s set in a train station and we’re treated to the exploits of the poor, instead of the rich. What I particularly enjoyed were the many subplots that managed to weave together by the end of the film. Since it’s a pre-code, the amount of sex is fairly shocking: when Ruth needs money, she’s willing to prostitute herself out to Chick (Fairbanks), a bum who’s posing as a rich guy thanks to the contents of a suitcase that the drunken McHugh left behind. However, Ruth can’t bring herself to do it and after having a change of heart, Chick decides to play “Sant-y Claus” and help her out. Ruth also has a deliciously twisted back story, which involves a perverted old man that she used to read dirty books too. She thought he was blind–he wasn’t, and when he whipped off his glasses and revealed a pair of evil eyes, Ruth ran for her life. Now, the pervert is hot on her trail and unbeknownst to Ruth, has followed her to Union Depot.

    One of the scenes I got the biggest kick out of was in the diner where Chick orders a meal. When he places an order for “a nice tomato salad, a thick sirloin steak smothered in onions, some browned potatoes in creamed gravy, a flock(?) of hot biscuits and some honey, coffee and raisin pie a la mode”, you can only imagine what a meal that sumptuous would cost in 1932. Ready to find out? Here it is:


    The grand total of $1.75!

    Using this calculator, that meal would now cost a person $26.56. So back in those days, $2 was equivalent to $30 today. Talk about inflation! I’m always fascinated by the price of food in classic movies. It’s shocking to see a grocery store sign touting that a loaf of bread costs ten cents, while in today’s world, a loaf of bread is fifteen to twenty times that much! It insane.

    Ellen Drew and Dick Powell on the rooftopMoney is also a huge factor in Preston Sturges little known comedy, Christmas in July (1940). Like Union Depot, it’s also another “programmer”, this time starring Dick Powell and Ellen Drew, as well as Franklin Pangborn and Sturges’ favorites, William Demarest and Frank Moran. Jimmy (Powell) and Betty (Drew) are a working class couple who spend their evenings sitting on the rooftop of their tenement, listening to the radio. Jimmy is obsessed with winning a coffee slogan contest that he entered, and while Betty doesn’t exactly get his entry (“If You Can’t Sleep at Night, it isn’t the Coffee–It’s the Bunk!”), they both dream about the $25,000 prize money that would change their lives. When Jimmy’s co-workers trick him into thinking he’s won the contest via fake telegram, he and Betty go on a huge shopping spree where Jimmy finally buys Betty an engagement ring, as well as gifts for all their neighbors and a state-of-the-art davenport for his mother.


    The self airing davenola!
    Push button technology that includes a reading lamp, a radio and a self-fluffing mattress–
    all for the low, low price of $198.50! Try getting a couch for that now.

    Out of all the Sturges films I’ve seen, I have to say that Christmas in Julyhas become one of my favorites. Clocking in at under 67 minutes, it’s not only funny and witty, but Sturges shows how the sudden accumulation of money changes the opinions of others who would have treated the couple like a bunch of nobodies beforehand. In that respect, Christmas in July is pretty depressing: money changes you in the eyes of others. It’s a sad, but true realization. Jimmy and Betty are the same people, only richer and yet, everyone fawns over them as though they’re newfound royalty. That is–until it’s revealed that Jimmy’s winning was a joke and suddenly, Jimmy is a “criminal” to those that had just fawned over him. It’s quite hypocritical.


    Like Christmas in July…
    Living the Good Life: Ellen Drew and Dick Powell in Christmas in July

    I didn’t realize it until the other day, but Union Depot and Christmas in Julyare quite similar in tone. What makes them work is the ability for the audiences to identify with their characters: Ruth and Chick or Jimmy and Betty. Both stories are representative of their eras. With Ruth and Chick, they’re just struggling to make it through the depression like everyone else. And with Jimmy and Betty, they’re both working just to make ends meet, in hopes that one day they’ll be able to afford a better life. When both couples come into money, the first thing they do is splurge: a big meal for Chick and some new clothes for Ruth, while Jimmy and Betty run down to the local department store and buy an engagement ring. But despite their wealth, the one thing that really draws you into both stories is love. You get the feeling that each couple could wind up poor and still find a way to make it. Love is stronger than money and the tense situations that test each couple afterwards, prove it.

    And that’s the beauty of the one hour movie: a big plot and good acting packed into half the time that a regular movie would take. Sure there are some clunkers, but there are hidden gems as well. The studios cranked these movies out like clockwork out only to fill out double bill features and to meet quotas that theaters set. But what the studios didn’t realize is that in some of these little films, such as Union Depot and Christmas in July, were just as uplifting and entertaining as an top-billed movie, maybe even more so. By the time the 60’s rolled around, the “programmer” was pretty much obsolete and that’s a shame. Thank goodness they’re still around for us to watch today. Although times have changed, good films haven’t and sometimes, you just need a little cinematic pick-me-up that only a well-crafted b-movie programmer can provide.

    Read Full Post »

    Here is a review of CHRISTMAS IN JULY.  It is reviewed after a rare Warner Brothers film UNION DEPOT.

  7. One of DICK POWELL's overlooked films is CHRISTMAS IN JULY,  which is probably PRESTON STURGES' first directorial endeavors will play on December 20th. Here is  underrated treasure from Paramount. It is nice film that Leonard Maltin gave it a 3 1/2 rating. it is a charming film with ELLEN DREW as his love interest. Ms. Drew was a Paramount starlet.image.jpeg.667e7995566412b29b886b7acc39a3a0.jpegimage.jpeg.55c4a35f5ebae8ff9aa775a3ed0e092a.jpegImage result for christmas in july dick powell

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  8. GINGER ROGER'S characterization of Ellie Mae in THE PRIMROSE PATH (1940) is a great example of a young woman acting like a girl to escape her womanliness.  She dons unattractive clothes, wears pig tails and fights like a tom boy.Here is the rub, Her mother is a lady of the night, or a prostitute that is implied in the film.  The production had strong censorship problem.  PRIMROSE PATH IS one of the most underrated films of 1940. Ginger is so fabulous and believable as Ellie Mae.  I do not know if any of you are familiar with the film. It is going to be playing in October or November,images.jpg.2428ba4b08aa11619b3fe28377da88d7.jpgdownload.jpg.839ef33b8cc55467c8754ce28488b81b.jpg 


  9. Here is a list of PROTO NOIR FILMS


    Pulled from a combination of Film Noir by Andrew Spicer and Wikipedia.

    • The Musketeers of Pig Alley
    • Alias Jimmy Valentine
    • The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari
    • Dr. Mabuse, the Gambler
    • The Joyless Street
    • The Street
    • Metropolis
    • Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans
    • Underworld
    • The Docks of New York
    • The Racket
    • Asphalt
    • The Great Gabbo
    • Thunderbolt
    • The Blue Angel
    • Paid
    • La Chienne
    • M
    • The Big Gamble
    • Blonde Crazy
    • City Streets
    • Five Star Final
    • Little Caesar
    • The Maltese Falcon
    • Quick Millions
    • The Public Enemy
    • Looking for His Murderer
    • Stürme der Leidenschaft
    • The Beast of the City
    • I Am a Fugitive from a Chain Gang
    • Night Court
    • Payment Deferred
    • Scarface
    • Two Seconds
    • 20,000 Years in Sing Sing
    • Murders in the Rue Morgue
    • Blood Money
    • Private Detective 62
    • The Testament of Dr. Mabuse
    • Crime Without Passion
    • Midnight
    • The Black Cat
    • La Bandera
    • Bordertown
    • The Florentine Dagger
    • G-Men
    • The Glass Key
    • The Scoundrel
    • Bullets or Ballots
    • Fury
    • Great Guy
    • Muss 'em Up
    • The Petrified Forest
    • Satan Met a Lady
    • Black Legion
    • Dead End
    • Kid Galahad
    • Marked Woman
    • San Quentin
    • You Only Live Once
    • They Gave Him a Gun
    • They Won't Forget
    • The Green Cockatoo
    • Pépé le Moko
    • Algiers
    • The Amazing Dr. Clitterhouse
    • Angels with Dirty Faces
    • La Bête Humaine
    • Hôtel du Nord
    • Port of Shadows
    • They Drive by Night
    • Blind Alley
    • Each Dawn I Die
    • Invisible Stripes
    • King of the Underworld
    • Let Us Live
    • Rio
    • The Roaring Twenties
    • They Made Me a Criminal
    • Le dernier tournant
    • Le Jour se Lève
    • On the Night of the Fire
    • Angels Over Broadway
    • City for Conquest
    • Johnny Apollo
    • The Shanghai Gesture
    • Cat People
    • The Leopard Man
    • The Seventh Victim


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  10. if you think of early Seminal Noir, then, Barbara Stanwyck's BABY FACE from 1932 and Paul Muni's  seminal SCARFACE also from 1932 can be included as PROTO NOIR. Many of the PRE CODE FILMS , especially from WARNER BROTHERS, USED same type of lighting inspired by GERMAN EXPRESSIONISM to give them a shadowy tense atmosphere that would be used again in Noir in the late 1940s.  

    Speaking of BABY FACE, no other character played by Barbara that could be as bad and rotten TO THE CORE  as any noir FEMME FATALE.  Books have been written about SCARFACE on how it influenced many, many future films.  There is the taboo INCEST angle with Muni obsessing about his sister played by ANN DVORAK. SCARFACE is more than a conventional GANGSTER MOVIE.  PERSONALLY, I LOVE the PUBLIC ENEMY and LITTLE CAESER. i am big fan of PRE COdE FILMS. I tape them whenever they are available.

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  11. Stolen Ruby Red Slippers From ‘Wizard Of Oz’ Found By FBI After 13 Years

    The FBI still needs help identifying other suspects associated with the theft and extortion surrounding Dorothy’s shoes.

    By Elyse Wanshel


    There’s no place like home — or FBI custody.

    Ruby red slippers worn by Judy Garland in the movie “The Wizard of Oz” have been successfully recovered after the shoes were stolen from a Minnesota museum over a decade ago, the FBI announced Tuesday. 


    A pair of ruby red slippers worn by Judy Garland in “The Wizard of Oz” was stolen from a Minnesota museum more than 10 years ago.

    The iconic sequined heels — which the agency says are one of four known pairs Garland wore in the film that are still in existence — mysteriously disappeared from the Judy Garland Museum, located in the actress’ childhood home in Grand Rapids, Minnesota, in August 2005. In the middle of the night, an unknown crook (or crooks) smashed through the museum’s back entrance and broke the plexiglass case that held the shoes, which were on loan to the museum from a collector in California, per The New York Times. There were no finger prints or surveillance video of the theft — all that was left behind was a single red sequin. 

    The case eluded local authorities for years.

    But in 2017, someone approached the company that insured the shoes saying they had information on the slippers’ whereabouts and how they could be returned, according to the FBI.


    Judy Garland’s name can be seen written inside of the recovered pair.

    Subscribe to The Morning Email.

    Wake up to the day's most important news.

    When it became apparent to the Grand Rapids police “that those involved were in reality attempting to extort the owners of the slippers,” authorities requested the FBI’s assistance, explained special agent Christopher Dudley, who led the investigation from the FBI’s Minneapolis division, during a Tuesday press conference.

    Some of the slippery slipper thieves were busted during an undercover sting operation earlier this summer. The famous footwear, which the FBI claims “are estimated to be worth several million dollars,” were recovered.

    Soon after, the slippers, which happen to be a mismatched pair that come in two different sizes, were examined at Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of American History in Washington, D.C., where another pair of mismatched ruby red slippers from the film has been on display since 1979.


    Dawn Wallace, a conservator for the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of American History, analyzes one of the recovered slippers at the Smithsonian’s Conservation Lab in Washington, D.C.

    Conservators at the Smithsonian discovered that the recovered slippers, which are nearly 80 years old, were constructed the same way as the pair on display in D.C. and that the two pairs are mismatched twins that were mixed up over the years.

    Though some suspects in these crimes have been identified, the FBI says that the case is still ongoing and the agency needs the public’s help to identify others associated with the theft and extortion.

    “We are still working to ensure that we have identified all parties involved in both the initial theft and the more recent extortion attempt for their return,” Dudley said. “This is very much an active investigation.”

    “There are certainly people out there who have additional knowledge regarding both the theft and the individuals responsible for concealing the slippers all these years,” he added. “We are asking that you come forward.”

    Those with any information are encouraged to contact the FBI at 1-800-CALL-FBI (225-5324) or submit information online at tips.fbi.gov.

    Elyse Wanshel

    Reporter, HuffPost

    Suggest a correction


    Museums Federal Bureau Of Investigation Theft Judy Garland Wizard Of Oz


    by Taboola 

    Here is an article about the stolen WIZARD OF OZ RUBY SLIPPERS HAVE BEEN RECOVERED.

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  12. THERE is a variation of the Greek soup.  You use beef broth.  You make mini meatballs using salt, pepper and a bit of nutmeg or allspice to make it aromatic.  The broth comes to a low boil, not a rolling boil. You add the meatballs to the broth.  You can include some cooked rice if you like.  Let the meatballs cook.  Then lower the heat to a simmer.  Add, the beaten egg and lemon mixture (ABOUT 1/4 OF A CUP) to the soup in a slow stream. It is a wonderful soup for all seasons; and quite filling.

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  13. I have a mediterranean food background since I am Armenian. The soup is called Avgolemono (Greek Egg and Lemon Soup)  that is Greek in origin.  The soup title is translated into lemon egg drop soup in English, which is absolutely delicious.

    Here is a recipe by Chef Robert Irvine.



    Lemon Egg Drop Soup

    1 Review
    Recipe courtesy of Robert Irvine
    18 min
    10 min
    8 min
    6 servings


    • 8 cups chicken broth
    • 4 large eggs
    • 2 lemons, juiced
    • 1/4 teaspoon lemon pepper
    • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
    • Grated Parmesan


    Bring broth to a boil in a 3 quart saucepan over medium heat. In a medium bowl, whisk eggs, lemon juice and lemon pepper until well blended, then slowly whisk in 1 cup of the hot broth. Lower heat; add egg mixture, stirring constantly. Cook over low heat, stirring until heated through. (Don't boil! Eggs will curdle.)

    Remove from heat and stir in lemon zest. Ladle into serving bowls and sprinkle each serving with a little Parmesan.

    • Like 1
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  14. Here are some yummy POP CORN  alternatives for the TCM WINE CLUB?

    Here’s How To Pair Your Popcorn With Your Wine For The Perfect Movie Night

    By Emily Abrams 01/25/2018



    Flickr/H. Michael Miley

    Wine and popcorn are a winning combination, but if you’re going to be loyal to your favorite movie snack, you might as well do it right. Pick the right popcorn for your wine so that your taste buds get the best action while you’re sucked into Netflix.  Whether you buy your popcorn already flavored or you add your own spice blend to the bag, here’s how to pick the right vino.

    Buttered Popcorn And Chardonnay

    If you’re going to stick with buttered popcorn, you might as well choose a buttery Chardonnay to go with it. The popcorn brings out the nutty flavors in the Chardonnay and the buttery flavors of the wine complement the rich-buttered popcorn taste.

    These offerings are for real perhaps they were inpired by EPICURIOUS MAGAZINE

    Sharp Cheddar Popcorn And Cabernet Sauvignon

    A dry full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon pairs really well with extra sharp cheddar. The red wine highlights the saltiness and bold cheddar flavors.

    Cilantro Lime Popcorn And Pinot Grigio

    The freshness of the cilantro and the refreshing citrus flavor will definitely work with a crisp Pinot Grigio. Channel your inner suburban mom and sip on some Pinot with your cilantro-spiked popcorn.

    Truffle Popcorn And Pinot Noir


    Max Pixel

    If you add a little truffle oil or truffle salt to your popcorn, an earthy Pinot Noir is perfect to compliment the umami earthiness of the truffles.

    Sea Salt And Chocolate Popcorn And Merlot

    Chocolate and red wine are a perfect duo, especially when the chocolate is coating your popcorn and then it’s all just a genuinely enjoyable time. A little bit of natural sea salt mixed in there will bring out the rich flavors of the Merlot.

    Cinnamon Sugar Popcorn And Sparkling Wine

    A little sprinkle of cinnamon sugar on your popcorn works with white sparkling wines like Asti Spumanti or a little Prosecco.

    Rosemary Popcorn And Zinfandel

    Zinfandel is lighter in color than other popular red wines like Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. You’ll get notes of black pepper, jam and licorice. The spiciness of the Zinfandel works with a fragrant, woody herb like rosemary.

    Cumin Popcorn And Red Bordeaux



    Red Bordeaux wines are medium to full-bodied with aromas of black currant and plums. There’s an earthiness to a red Bordeaux that works with an earthy, nutty spice like cumin.

    Paprika Popcorn And Cabernet Sauvignon

    Cabernet grapes are complex and give the wine rich, bold and earthy flavors of black cherry, oak, currant and plum. Paprika has a bit of a pungent and peppery taste. It’s made from ground bonnet pepper and it lends a natural brick-red color to your food. You can sprinkle sweet Hungarian paprika or smoked paprika on your popcorn, and a rich Cabernet would work either way.

    Jalapeño Cheddar Popcorn And Zinfandel

    A dry, red Zinfandel has hints of dark jam and black pepper. The fruitiness and spiciness pair well with the jalapeño and the saltiness of the cheddar.

    Perhaps, they were inspired by the late lamented EPICURIOUS MAGAZINE?

  15. What does irreverence have to do with polished production values?

    Well, at Paramount it was everything, especially in their comedy output,  Their comedies were in a league of their own.  That is why I enjoy their comedies more than other studios output.  Take the ROAD PICTURES, Bob and Bing were having the time of their lives pulling jokes and situations that were outside the norm of output from other studio.  Such as the ending of THE ROAD TO UTOPIA, where the writers make a sneaky wink, wink about infidelity. I do not know how they got away with it.  

    Finally, the Billy Wilder and Preston Sturges and even Mitchell Leisen's comedies were not Hollywood standard fare.  

  16. At Paramount, the operative word was irreverence in many of their films.  Even with DeMile, there was some of it in Cleopatra, which cannot really be taken seriously. In many ways silly. The  Plainsman, is hardly historical. NORTHWEST MOUNTED POLICE was funny in it awfulness.

    There was CITY STREETS 1931 (Gary Cooper and Sylvia Sydney), which is hardly glossy or sentimental. Paramount was a mixed bag of films. Their comedies are among the best of the studios output.

  17.   20 hours ago, arpirose said:

    I do not understand why TCM did not include Cooper's PARAMOUNT FILMS such as PETER IBBETSON, THE GENERAL DIED AT DAWN, BEAU GESTE  AND others.  it is very shortsighted.

    Because they have to pay a licensing fee to borrow them from Universal (Universal controls many of the Paramount films up to 1949). When TCM programmers decide to air classic Paramount films, they tend to pick stuff with Mae West, or films made by Preston Sturges or Billy Wilder. 


    I respectfully disagree with the licensing bit.  They can afford to pay Universal for the use of their classic GARY COOPER films from PARAMOUNT.  They cannot be that costly.  when they did MARLANE DIETRICH AS THE SOFM, they paid UNIVERSAL FOR THE USE OF THE FILMS. TCM would have exposed the public to these great early Cooper Paramount films.He was younger and so attractive.  Universal would benefit as well due to the exposure of these fine films.

    One more thing, TMC is peddling this and that to make more money for themselves.  They can use that money for giving a better education for the fans by using films from the other big studios. MGM IS THE LEAST SATISFACTORY STUDIO from the Golden age. The other studios gave better product to their audiences.

    It's been a while  when they played a Preston Sturges film,

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