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WRITTEN ON THE WIND (1955)


Daleed77
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WRITTEN ON THE WIND (1955)

Dorothy Malone is a drag queen's delight in her Oscar winning role as a spoiled nymphomaniac in this over-the-top Technicolor melodrama directed Douglas Sirk. Rock Hudson, Lauren Bacall and Robert Stack are along for the ride, but just barely.

 

Steve Hayes discusses the film in the latest episode of this YouTube series.

 

 

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THE ACTOR WHO PLAYED THE FATHER: He was Robert Keith. In real life, the father to Brain. I?m sure many of you will recognize him from numerous film appearances. Robert had been more noted for his stage work, before finally getting settled in Hollywood around the late 1940s. He was for his time, one of the best and most reliable character actors working in films and then he drifted over to television. Always a supporting player, he made a very good living usually playing a father figure or sidekick to a major motion picture star. Some of his best known film work is in such classics as ?My Foolish Heart,? ?14 Hours,? ?Here Comes The Groom,? ?Young at Heart,? ?Love Me or Leave Me,? ?Guys and Dolls? and of course, his role in ?Written on the Wind.? But, for many fans, Robert?s best known role will probably be as the local police officer of the small town, in the Marlon Brando classic ?The Wild One.? Also on Robert Keith?s most noted list of accomplishments was his having originated on Broadway, the role of ?Doc? in the naval comedy/drama ?Mr. Roberts.? He was in real life, like he was on screen, quiet and soft spoken. He passed away in 1966.

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My friend and I saw "Basic Instinct" when it was out in the theatres. I nudged her in the ribs at recognizing Dorothy Malone. Told her that Malone worked with Michael Douglas' father (Kirk) in "The Last Sunset." Her eyes glazed over.

 

Thank god for these message boards where people know what you know about movies. Though I know sometimes my fellow posters' eyes glaze over. (Ha!)

 

And Kingrat...you're right, it was a killer mambo. Boyz, get your cardiograms in order when you check out Dorothy Malone in a movie.

 

(Didja ever see "Warlock"??)

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For sometime now, there?s been talk of creating a film on the real-life account of the events the original novel and film were based on. The real story centers on the 1932 scandal involving North Carolina tobacco millionaire Zachary Smith Reynolds and his relationship with singer/actress Libby Holman. The novel ?Written on the Wind? by Robert Wilder was published in 1945. It quickly became obvious to many what or who the Wilder book was based on. To some film historians, it?s been a mystery why it took Hollywood so long to turn the novel into a motion picture. Most likely, there had already been similar screenplays written and turned into films based on the Reynolds scandal. Most of these so-called motion picture recreations have been thinly disguised versions of the actual event. When Universal Pictures finally decided around 1955 to make a motion picture based on the Wilder novel, screenplay writer George Zuckerman totally changed the location from North Carolina to the oil rich family atmosphere of Texas. Even the original names or characters from the book were changed! How one can really say that the film version is based on the novel has led to a bit of debate, if not, controversy. Whatever the case, the movie was a smash hit and continued Universal Pictures successful launch into recreating many popular melodramatic novels of the era. Certainly, for director Douglas Sirk, the success of ?Written on the Wind? made him the studio?s most critically well received filmmaker of the 1950s. How strange it was to see Sirk suddenly leave and give up his successful film career, due to ill heath. His last film for Universal was another in a series of smash hit melodramas, ?Imitation of Life? in 1959. He returned to his native Germany, where he lived out his life and died in 1987. It?s only been in the last 30 years or so, that Sirk?s film work, especially in America, has gained a solid and devoted following. He was very much a director (one of the last) to demand and utilize all the excellence of the studio system.

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