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Everything posted by AcademeWriter

  1. Oh, yes! I would love this. Fashion from the fabulous 30's gowns, to the 40's Bette Davis tailored clothes to the Audrey 50's Vogue style, down to the Annie Hall look in the 70's.
  2. What s a Musical? I think that a musical is a film that has both song and dance, and at least three to five numbers. The classic musicals we all know, but the sub-genre have to be explored as well: Operetta: - Jeannette MacDonald/Nelson Eddy, and others of that genre Mostly legitimate singing, but there are sporadic dances thrown in each operetta -a waltz, a folk dance, or a specialty number.... =============================== Biopics: (Can be a singer, composer... ) For instance: The Helen Morgan Story Love me, or Leave Me -
  3. Eliza and Henry Higgins have had a love/hate relationship from the beginning. Eliza is more emotional and demonstrative, while Henry Higgins is reserved, understated, using only wit and intellect to interact in an objective fashion. Eliza is an experiment, nothing more. In this scene, however, Eliza's frustration comes into full view. She had worked hard, but they have ignored her efforts in winning their bet. In this clip, Henry Higgins's logical world is cracked, as slippers are "shied" at him. He is forced to deal with emotions now, and realizes that he and his experiment have reached
  4. Have you seen any Robert Preston films that are not musicals? If so, what do you notice about his characters and his approach to acting... I first saw Robert Preston in How the West Was Won. My mother took me out of school for the day to go downtown to see the movie because it was historical and showed the struggles of the early settlers in America. Robert Preston was a strong character in that film who pursued Debbie Reynolds throughout the story. I always felt bad that Debbie Reynolds never married him, as he was a good catch, as an able rancher. The problem was that his cha
  5. I liked the question about the comparison of Gypsy, sandwiched between classic musicals of the past and the disruptive style of the 60's First, the film, Gypsy, begins as a backstage musical, much like the old musicals. It is an audition for a theater piece - in this case, vaudeville. There were many backstage musicals of the 30s and 40's. In the old films of the 30's though,the performers were mostly or all adults. Here, we have children vying in a very competitive atmosphere. In the backstage musicals of the 30's, the musical auditions may have made the auditionees nervous, anxious,
  6. What keeps Jerry Mulligan from being completely unlikeable in a scene in which he acts pretty darn unlikeable? I don't think that Jerry Mulligan is unlikeable at all. He was very friendly to his fellow artists on the street, as he set up his paintings. Jerry was in his element in the artist's colony in Montmartre, and only became annoyed with the "third year girl" because she was a phony, acting knowledgeable when she really wasn't (using comments she may have "overheard"). To afford a 'third year' in Paris takes money, so the college junior was not poor. On the other hand, Jerry Mulligan
  7. Retyping - I put the comment in the wrong place. I was privledged to see William Warfield (51) sing live at the 1976 Bi-Centennial Celebration in Central Park in NYC. Leonard Bernstein led the concert, and Warfield recited and sang, "The Lincoln Memorial." Great voice, both speaking and singing!
  8. I was privledged to see William Warfield (51) sing live at the 1976 Bi-Centennial Celebration in Central Park. Leonard Bernstein led the concert, and Warfield recited and sang, "The Lincoln Memorial." Great voice, both speaking and singing!
  9. An American in Paris is my favorite musical. It was placed at the end of the first That's Entertainment movie as MGM's "masterpiece," and well-deserved. The actors, dancers (Gene) singers, and actors were sterling. The production was the culmination of movie musicals in perforamnce, choreography, costume, set design. We know the performers were great, but I wanted to discuss some other creative talent as well, although Gene was "a given," and the best! Choreography The seventeen minute ballet at the end of the film is incredible in its use of ballet, tap, jazz and overall ensemble
  10. I'd vote for an Ann Miller Star of the Month on TCM, or at least an evening of her films.
  11. This is a famous clip from The Bandwagon and was used as the springboard theme for the retrospective movie, and its sequels, That's Entertainment! What I find interesting here is that the scripted characters represent different elements of the musical. Jack: The Shakespearean or classic actor. - acting Fred: The dancer Nanette: The singer Oscar: The musician/songwriter Note: We have heard a lot about techs, producers, and directors in the course, but not much about songwriters so far. They are as vital as the performers! Songwriters, such
  12. I really like Alice Faye and love her movies. She did a number of films in the thirties and several with Shirley Temple, including Stowaway, Poor Little Rich Girl. Alice Faye appeared with Jack Haley and Robert Young in the Temple films, but also in many others. I love Alexander's Ragtime Band as well. Thank you for including her. I know that it is impossible to mention all, but there are some who should be spotlighted, including Alice Faye.
  13. If we talk about movie musicals of the 1940's, we have to include Vera Ellen! She not only danced in the 40's but sequeyed into big films of the 1950s as well. Vera Ellen danced as Ivy Smith in On the Town pairing up with Gene Kelly*, as well as in other musical films, such as Words and Music (1948), Wonder Man (1945) and The Kid from Brooklyn (1946) the last two with Danny Kaye. As we head into the 1950's next week, she will appear in 1950's White Christmas, Three Little Words, and The Belle of New York, etc. Vera Ellen was an amazing dancer who could embrace tap, ballet and jazz v
  14. I know that this is a Daily Dose board for #8; however there is never an official board where we can post about the Daily Lecture/Video. In this case, I would like to request a "sin license" (permission) to do just that - and comment on the video about On the Town. I liked the comment made about Gene Kelly's quote, that all are important in musicals. I had recently posted in the Ruby Keeler / Eleanor Powell board (but now cannot find it to repeat my own quote here); therefore, I paraphrase myself.... Since Gene Kelly said that every performer/tech person is important, I wanted to r
  15. I liked this number from Cabin in the Sky.The song was sung beautifully by Ethel Waters. One of the analysis questions was how this scene would be different if it had been done with a child, instead of a husband. Petunia sings her song to Joe lovingly, as someone in love, rather then with love. She is not young here, yet she exhibits a young love's angst when she is worried, and one of innocence as if it were a new love, rather than love reborn, as her husband recuperates. In the first scene, she sings softly. She nurses Joe like a sick child with tender, loving care. She holds his head t
  16. I first saw Judy Garland in The Wizard of Oz however, I also used to watch her on The Judy Garland Show; therefore, as a child,I got to see two sides of Judy - the young one, and the middle-aged one simultaneously. My favorite movie musicals with Judy are: Meet Me in St. Louis, Easter Parade, Summer Stock, A Star is Born. In A Star is Born, one of her films of the 50's, Judy Garland not only sings wonderfully, acts with emotion, but she really pours her heart out in song and dance. It is a bravura performance (but aren't they all?) that runs the gamut from her own happy rise to the trage
  17. I dislike comparing performers because each person has his or her own unique abilities and personalities. There are many variables that affect performance as well, including training, the roles they receive, storyline, creativity, contractual obligations, etc. Also, each individual can put his/her own spin on a role. What would "42nd Street" have been like with Eleanor Powell instead, or "Born to Dance" with Ruby Keller? We remember these films because they were cast and performed by those we love. If they had been cast otherwise, we might remember those performances instead. For example
  18. Jeanette McDonald and Nelson Eddy were an iconic couple on film. Their sphere was operetta and the operettas they sang dictated the morality more than the studios I believe, as most of the operettas were period pieces with the usual norms, etiquettes and standards of their time. I was with a light opera company in Manhattan which did many operettas on a repertory basis, so I am very well acquainted with the genre in viewing and in performance. The idea was that the woman was chaste and sought after. The young heroine sometimes wandered (not morally, but in her path to her goal, euther in
  19. In many, if not most dances whether on Broadway or on film, there are elements of opposition. In most of the Fred Astaire/Ginger Rogers musicals there is Fred dancing forward, and like they say, Ginger doing it all backwards, and in heels. There is opposition in the male/female choreography due to gender roles - the man "leads," the woman "follows." In this film, however, I do not see the song and dance as a "battle of the sexes" so much. Ginger is dressed in an equestrian costume - therefore the pants - and holds a riding crop. Without a lovely dress to twirl around, it loses a bit of
  20. This clip of "The Love Parade" reminds me greatly of the set in "Ninotchka," with its grand white doors, and elegant facade. In "Ninotchka," there is a fake gunshot as well, except that it is in reality a champagne bottle cork that pops, causing Greta Garbo to slide down the doorjamb as an "executed prisoner." In the "Love Parade," the fake gunshot was a comedic attempt at turning a rather serious incident - the shooting of Maurice Chevalier's character - into a light and frothy moment. Likewise, the supposed shooting of Ninotchka, by a light and frothy Melvyn Douglas also turns a serio
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