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Forget the Christmas movie line-up.  Forget the remakes.  Forget (gasp!) Noir Alley.  Joan Blondell is December's Star of the Month!  She is one of my veryveryveryvery favorite of actresses.  On the A-list of my A-list.  Though she was not a great actress, she was still very good and handled all her roles with professional aplomb.  Put that together with just about the adorablest, darlingest presence that ever was on a movie screen and you've got one knockout.  Her story is the archetypal show-biz baby one, born into a troupe of Vaudevillians, making her way through beauty contests and modeling to the New York stage, discovered and--voila!--movie star.  As well as me, the rest of America was in love with her, making her one of the most successful actresses of the early to mid-thirties.  She had a naturalness and down-to-earth quality in her performances which no doubt endeared her to audiences, making her seem like a pal.  If she wasn't the picture's lead that that much, she was likely the female lead, as often as not providing the clear-headed voice of reason opposite the male lead's obliviousness (viz. Lawyer Man 1932; Footlight Parade, 1933).  

TCM could have improved Joanie's treatment with a larger line-up of movies.  Perhaps they thought it would get redundant.  Dunno.  But there are three I'd have like to have seen included:

Other Men's Women (1931), in which she plays a supporting role as the lead man's intermittent squeeze, a party-girl and dance-hall habitué who isn't necessarily focused on any particular man.

The Greeks Had a Word for Them (1932), in which she stars along with Madge Evans and Ina Claire as a trio of ex-Ziegfeld gold-diggers out to stick it to the men.  They trade snappy repartee with each other and male characters, like Lowell Sherman who plays his typical worldly ennuyeuse.  AKA Three Broadway Girls.

The Blue Veil (1951).  Don't know about it, but it was an Oscar-nominated performance.

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Wait, you didn't mean that Joanie?

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Blondell is an absolute favorite in this household. Mr Tiki who isn't well versed in early movies calls her "Banjo Eyes". Recently, my mother convalesced at my house for a month after a hospital stay. She watched a lot of my TCM recordings always asking for Joan Blondell pre-codes.

Joan's snappy saucy personality in a cute story is a great pick-me-up for those feeling down which is probably why she was a darling of the Depression. As she matured so did her roles, especially good in CRY HAVOC!

1188918958_BlondellJoan_01.jpg.0153de1c7d3515839dbd9398aa7e16c7.jpg

BTW, which month will she be featured? (like I don't already own so many recordings)

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So The Blue Veil still has not been commercially released on home video?  Amazon has a copy from a third party vendor which is apparently bootleg,recorded from a TV showing, with multiple 1-star ratings due to the quality.

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Surprise. The thread title, exclamation point especially, almost always means Crawford. Are you sure Blondell is a "Joanie"? Whatever the case, I guess this means we can include Crawford among all the forgettables.

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9 hours ago, slaytonf said:

TCM could have improved Joanie's treatment with a larger line-up of movies.  Perhaps they thought it would get redundant.  

I don't think Hollywood ever considered redundance any kind of problem.  ;) 

But a big Blondell fan here too, so thanks for the info.  :)

And for a short moment, I thought you misspelled JONI!  :D 

 

 

Sepiatone

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7 hours ago, Fedya said:

Wait, you didn't mean that Joanie?

Okay, anyone else who thought this would be a discussion of Erin Moran in "Galaxy of Terror", raise guilty hands...

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9 hours ago, laffite said:

Are you sure Blondell is a "Joanie"? 

The quintessential Joanie!

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28 minutes ago, slaytonf said:

The quintessential Joanie!

NOT;   A Rose is a rose is a rose.

 

 

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17 hours ago, jamesjazzguitar said:

NOT;   A Rose is a rose is a rose.

 

 

Ya know and speaking of which, in her later years, Blondell would've made a great Mama Rose in Gypsy, wouldn't ya think?!

(...wonder if she ever played her on the stage?)

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17 minutes ago, Dargo said:

Ya know and speaking of which, in her later years, Blondell wouldn't made a great Mama Rose in Gypsy, wouldn't ya think?!

(...wonder if she ever played her on the stage?)

Now that you mention I can see Joan in that role.

Even though she was more of a character actress than a leading lady, she was always enjoyable in any movie she was in.

 

 

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1 hour ago, Dargo said:

(...wonder if she ever played her on the stage?)

She had an early and late stage career, before and after her movie career, naturally.

The Internet Broadway Database gives her career as:

   The Rope Dancers (Nov 20, 1957 - May 03, 1958)
  • Also Starring: Joan Blondell [Mrs. Farrow] 
   The Naked Genius (Oct 21, 1943 - Nov 20, 1943)
  • Starring: Joan Blondell [Honey Bee Carroll] 
   Penny Arcade (Mar 10, 1930 - Mar 1930)
  • Performer: Joan Blondell [Myrtle] 

Maggie the Magnificent (Oct 21, 1929 - Nov 1929)

  • Performer: Joan Blondell [Etta] 
   The Trial of Mary Dugan (Sep 19, 1927 - Sep 29, 1928)
  • Performer: Joan Blondell

 

This additional information, per Wikipedia:

In 1943, Blondell returned to Broadway as the star of Mike Todd's short-lived production of The Naked Genius, a comedy written by Gypsy Rose Lee.. . . . In 1948, she left the screen for three years and concentrated on theater, performing in summer stock and touring with Cole Porter's musical, Something for the Boys.[2] She later reprised her role of Aunt Sissy in the musical version of A Tree Grows in Brooklyn for the national tour, starred opposite Tallulah Bankhead in the play Crazy October (which closed on the road) and played the nagging mother, Mae Peterson, in the national tour of Bye Bye Birdie.

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One of my favorite dramatic roles of Blondell's A TREE GROWS IN BROOKLYN '45. She's perfect. Although I also really love CRY HAVOC, both pictures have been screened by our local classic film group and the entire audience was SILENT & ENRAPTURED during key scenes.

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16 hours ago, slaytonf said:

The quintessential Joanie!

Sorry, Miss Crawford, seems your legacy has taken a hit. But fret not, you probably got more fan mail.

 

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16 hours ago, Dargo said:

Ya know and speaking of which, in her later years, Blondell wouldn't made a great Mama Rose in Gypsy, wouldn't ya think?!

(...wonder if she ever played her on the stage?)

;)  Heh!  You mean WOULD HAVE made a great Mama Rose, right?  And sure.  No WAY could she have sang worse than Rosalind Russell!  :blink:

But probably(and maybe) not as good as this JOANIE!  ;) 

 

Sepiatone

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57 minutes ago, Sepiatone said:

;)  Heh!  You mean WOULD HAVE made a great Mama Rose, right?  And sure.  No WAY could she have sang worse than Rosalind Russell!  :blink:

But probably(and maybe) not as good as this JOANIE!  ;) 

 

Sepiatone

Thanks, Sepia. Yep, I meant would've, not "wouldn't".

Or as some also say, "would'a". ;)

And speaking of Joan's singing ability...just from the only instance I could find of her singing in the following scene in 1934's Dames, I'd say while she might not have been any worse than Rosalind Russell in this regard, she doesn't appear to be that much better either...

 

(...but then again, I don't think the Mama Rose character calls for operatic abilities, either)

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Sure, no songbird, but unlike Rosalind, is still able to "sing" the entire song in the same key throughout.  ;)

Sepiatone

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On 12/2/2019 at 2:28 AM, slaytonf said:

The Greeks Had a Word for Them (1932), in which she stars along with Madge Evans and Ina Claire as a trio of ex-Ziegfeld gold-diggers out to stick it to the men.  They trade snappy repartee with each other and male characters, like Lowell Sherman who plays his typical worldly ennuyeuse.  AKA Three Broadway Girls.

I don't believe TCM has ever aired this film. And it's an RKO film so I don't understand why TCM wouldn't have access to it. I would also love to see it.

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OK.  So where is Joan Blondell's slider on the home page?? She is SOTM but TCM is promoting:  Meet Me In St. Louis, Buying TCM "stuff," the Bonham's auction and Pets on Set.  Can we please get some respect for December's SOTM??

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2 minutes ago, lydecker said:

OK.  So where is Joan Blondell's slider on the home page?? She is SOTM but TCM is promoting:  Meet Me In St. Louis, Buying TCM "stuff," the Bonham's auction and Pets on Set.  Can we please get some respect for December's SOTM??

You're right.  Even pets are getting more respect then our beloved Joan Blondell!

 

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I like her a lot. Looking at the films I have seen over the yearws and logged, I have seen Joan in 33 films, a nice little total that puts her in the top 25 actors/actresses that I have seen in the most films. She has impeccable comic timing, but is also a wonderful dramatic presence too.

... And I'm finishing up the King and the Chorus Girl right now.

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"Hey Babs, tell me the truth, am I the quintessential Joanie, or not?"

///

;)

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3 hours ago, midnight08 said:

I don't believe TCM has ever aired this film. And it's an RKO film so I don't understand why TCM wouldn't have access to it. I would also love to see it.

The Greeks Had a Word For Them (1932) is not on MovieCollector's list.  But you can see it in a number of venues online.  I think it's in the public domain, which may explain why the prints are uniformly wretched.  It's a lot of fun, and the three women leads are, of course, knockouts.

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4 hours ago, lydecker said:

OK.  So where is Joan Blondell's slider on the home page?? She is SOTM but TCM is promoting:  Meet Me In St. Louis, Buying TCM "stuff," the Bonham's auction and Pets on Set.  Can we please get some respect for December's SOTM??

I just noticed Joan's slider is up on the home page now.

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