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Ernst Lubitsch and his films


konway87
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Hey, Konway! -- As you all know, Lubitsch used symbolisms in his films like Hitchcock did.

 

I'm new here (Lubitsch world), but I'd like to figure that out. The floor patterns you mentioned in a prior post has me intrigued, that's for sure.

 

To Be or Not to Be will be airing in about ten minutes on TCM.

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To be or not to be is a brilliant film. Chessboard patterns can be seen in Hotel Room of Professor Siletsky. We also see Theatrical Producer playing Chess.

 

Frank Grimes, Will you post your opinions about To be or not to be after you watch the film?

 

I also highly recommend Ninotchka, A Royal Scandal, and Design for Living. I saw A Royal Scandal 2 days ago. I think A Royal Scandal is one of the funniest films ever made. I loved the film even more after I watched the film second time. It is sad that they haven't released a DVD yet.

 

But the film is available at Internet for free.

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Frank Grimes, Will you post your opinions about To be or not to be after you watch the film?

 

Konway, my friend, that's a line that will get me in big trouble. I still need to post my The Shop Around the Corner opinions, especially those on Kralik and Klara. I really love Klara's "duality."

 

I did tape To Be or Not to Be, but I'm not sure when I'll get to it. I guess I could pull a Lubitsch day and watch To Be or Not to Be, Design for Living, and Heaven Can Wait. Those are the Lubitsch films I have right now.

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I love *Bluebeard's Eighth Wife*. It didn't do very well when it was released but I think a movie like that (with a man who so cavalierly marries and divorces multiple women) would play better today than in the late '30s when divorces happened, but were not very common. I think Gary did a great job (big surprise) but the public just couldn't see him as a guy that would marry and divorce 6 women (there were 7 before Claudette but as he points out to her one died of natural causes ;) ). I don't want to say he was miscast, b/c I don't think he was. Usually if someone is miscast they do a poor job b/c the role isn't right for their style and he was a good enough actor to pull off just about any type of role, except for a bad guy :). He was good at light comedy and he and Claudette made a good screen team. I just don't think the public was ready for it.

 

I'd say this film is one of the most clever romantic comedies I've ever seen as Claudette turns his ways around on him and uses them to really make him truly fall for her like she has for him. As they say in the movie, Claudette refuses to "be nice" to him (wink, wink) and that leads up to my favorite scene. Gary is determined to get some lovin' from his latest wife so he plans a nice dinner for them at home. He starts off with cocktails that are quite strong and then all the food they eat is very salty so Claudette keeps drinking lots of champagne to go with it. Then when she's beginning to get tipsy, he puts some music on and they start dancing. Well, at first they are dancing then it just turns into him spinning her around making her quite dizzy and disoriented. At one point he even sings to her and when she starts to loosen up he goes in for the kill and carries her over to the sofa and keeps trying to kiss her. By this time though she has figured out his plan and makes sure that it backfires.

 

Earlier when they were eating dinner he freaked out b/c there was a plate of green onions on the table and he really does not like onions so Claudette moved them into the livingroom. Well when they sit down on the sofa they are on the table next to it. So when Gary is practically begging his own wife to kiss him she takes a big bite of the onions behind his back and then plants one on him. Of course he freaks out and starts yelling at her and she's just laughing in her drunken stupor. Then as they are arguing about getting a divorce (which at this point he's refusing to give her) we get the best line of the film when Claudette says "I'll fight you with every vegetable at my disposal!"

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*I guess I could pull a Lubitsch day and watch To Be or Not to Be, Design for Living, and Heaven* *Can Wait.*

 

Uh-oh, more promises to watch one of Gary's movies. I'm sure you'll get around to watching it but I doubt will ever hear your opinion of it ;). I'm really not sure what you'll think about *Design for Living*. It's one of my lesser faves of his. Gary, Frederic March, and Edward Everett Horton all do a good job but I'm not real crazy about Miriam Hopkins. She's okay though. It's interesting to watch b/c it's pretty racy and Gary really didn't do many movies like that. I would say this one, *A Farewell to Arms*, and *The Fountainhead* are his sauciest films and the first two are pre-codes.

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Hiya, Bluebeard's 6th Wife -- The 6th one is the floozy, right?

 

That was a wonderful "tease" for Bluebeard's Eighth Wife. Claudette Colbert's character sounds like my kind of dame.

 

"I'll fight you with every vegetable at my disposal!"

 

:D

 

Uh-oh, more promises to watch one of Gary's movies. I'm sure you'll get around to watching it but I doubt will ever hear your opinion of it.

 

I love it when you're right. ;)

 

It's interesting to watch b/c it's pretty racy and Gary really didn't do many movies like that. I would say this one, A Farewell to Arms, and The Fountainhead are his sauciest films and the first two are pre-codes.

 

Racy & saucy are my favorite dishes. Yet another terrific tease by you. FYI, I really liked Miriam Hopkins in Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde, so I'm thinking I may like her.

 

Hola, Bluebeard's 1st Wife -- You had to have been first because you ruin guys.

 

he is quite notorious around here for promising to watch films and then talk about them. And promising, and promising.....

 

Everyone has at least one great skill.

 

Good morning, Vlad.

 

Guten tag. ;)

 

Hey, Konway! -- I'll try to watch To Be or Not to Be. I almost bought it on DVD yesterday, but I ended up getting another film. Some Irish fella directed it, so I have my doubts of it being all that good. But I'm willing to give it a try.

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Hey, Konway! -- I'll try to watch To Be or Not to Be. I almost bought it on DVD yesterday, but I ended up getting another film. Some Irish fella directed it, so I have my doubts of it being all that good. But I'm willing to give it a try.

 

:P :p :P :p

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Here's a nice review of the new Criterion Eclipse collection of Ernst Lubitsch Musicals, written by Mick LaSalle (a sort of "pre-code expert" and generally good writer; the Mick was a recent guest at the Silver Screen Oasis forum):

 

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/01/25/PKD6UDTPP.DTL&hw=pre+code&sn=001&sc=1000

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Hiya, Bluebeard's 6th Wife -- The 6th one is the floozy, right?

 

Hey, I resemble that remark!

 

You're not the only one around here.

 

But seriously, if I got my hooks into Gary, do you really think I'd let him get away?

 

Oh, so you're the one who dies of "natural causes."

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Did anyone notice the long take technique used by Ernst Lubitsch? Before Orson Welles, I believe only Ernst Lubitsch and Hitchcock used the long take techniques in their films.

 

We can see long take techniques in films like Ninotchka and The Shop around the Corner. In Ninotchka, we see 3 minutes long take technique. I believe this happens in the scene where Melvyn Douglas (Leon) speaks to Greta Garbo (Ninotchka) in the restaurant.

 

In the Shop around the Corner, we see long take technique in the scene where Kralik (James Stewart) talks to Pirovitch (Felix Bressart) outside the restaurant.

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Interesting post. However, Buster Keaton probably used long takes before my idol Ernst Lubitsch, as if to provide proof that his amazing stunts were actually performed, not aided by photographic tricks. Perhaps someone can prove me wrong by providing examples of long takes in Lubitsch's early silents.

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I am not sure which Lubitsch film first showed the long take technique. I haven't seen all of Lubitsch's silent films. I will try to find out.

 

Orson Lubitsch, I have a question. What are your favorite Lubitsch films? Have you seen A Royal Scandal (1945)?I saw it recently. I think it is one of the funniest films ever made.

 

But my favorite Lubitsch film is The Shop around the Corner (1940). As for me, Any Lubitsch film is a delight.

 

I always liked Alfred Hitchcock and Lubitsch. I think Hitchcock used a long take technique in The Lodger (1927) and Downhill (1927). But I am not sure.

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Guess what? I think of A Royal Scandal as a film by Otto Preminger, who directed most of it. The partnership between them is an odd, uncomfortable one. Preminger thought so, and reportedly didn't like the film (although I cannot provide you with a direct quote at the moment). It's been so long since I watched it that all I remember is that I enjoyed it, but it didn't linger on my mind like Lubitsch's best.

Any Lubitsch film is a delight indeed, but some more than others. Personal favorites below, roughly in order of preference.

TROUBLE IN PARADISE (1932)

LADY WINDERMERE'S FAN (1925)

HEAVEN CAN WAIT (1943)

THE SHOP AROUND THE CORNER (1940)

THE OYSTER PRINCESS (1919)

TO BE OR NOT TO BE (1942)

ONE HOUR WITH YOU (1932)

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