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TCM movie idiosyncrasies - just for fun


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Okay here is my start, looking forward to reading additions to the list:

 

# In the days of yore didn't driver-side car doors open? Now I grew up when bench seats were common but I don't recall drivers getting in the passenger side and sliding across to get behind the wheel.

# Would John D Rockefeller have been a richer man if instead of cornering the oil industry he instead locked up the market for bicarbonate of soda?

 

 

 

 

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I think I know what you're wanting here, Desert (lemme know if I'm wrong): things in old movies that seem odd to us in the year 2011.

 

One thing that always jumps out at me is when somebody's in a hospital on their deathbed & the doctor is hovering over them with a cigarette dangling from his lips (sometimes they even give the patient a drag off it).

 

 

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> {quote:title=desertviewer wrote:}{quote}

> Okay here is my start, looking forward to reading additions to the list:

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> # In the days of yore didn't driver-side car doors open? Now I grew up when bench seats were common but I don't recall drivers getting in the passenger side and sliding across to get behind the wheel.

i think that was pretty common back when parking lots were scarce and everyone parked on the street. it is safer getting in that way than trying to enter on the streetside and risk getting hit or getting your door knocked off by a passing car. back then cars all had fairly small bench seats with no center consoles or between-seat shifters, so passenger-side entry was easy. that's one thing i really miss in modern vehicles. And a bench seat has an added bonus that it is way more convenient than separated seats for fun non-driving activities such as parking on lover's lane with your sweetheart. (if you want a bench seat, a column-mounted shifter and no footwell-hogging center console in a new car that isn't a giant pickup, good luck with that.)

 

Edited by: racketbuster on Aug 9, 2011 12:20 PM

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one thing that strikes me as odd about old fashions is the obsessive need for hats back in the 20's, 30's and 40's, especially women with their expensive and sometimes ridiculous-looking designer hats that came in hat boxes. and if you've seen enough old movies you will notice the new hat styles changed every year. (it also makes it really easy to tell exactly when a movie was made). When was the last time any woman obsessed over new hat fashions?

 

same with fur coats. Major plot points of some old movies involved desperate attempts to get someone a pricey (even in today's dollars) fur coat they wanted, even in movies that took place in L.A. where no woman would ever have a need for a thick coat like that. seriously, people would pay more for a fur coat than their car.

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You will be surprised but how people actually wore clothes according to the styles of whatever time period haven't really changed. Hollywood did showed an unrealistic view of how people run their everyday life.

 

Just as today, how a person dressed depended upon their economic standing, their feild of employment (men in positions like a bank president expected to wear suits and hats) and what part of the country one lived.

 

I have some old photos taken of my area during the 1920's - 40's and were surprised how FEW men actually wore suits or hats in public. During hot summers, most men wore long sleeves with the sleeves rolled up above the elbow, my goodness why someone didn't invent the short sleeve back then is beyond me.

 

Most women and children wore home made clothing and didn't have the time to really dress up or have time to worry about how people on the big screen dress. One good example is Shirley Temple with the 56 curls, one don't realize that was a *time cunsuming* style that many didn't have the luxery of to do for their daugthers.

 

One of the few realistic movies showing children in normal wear is "Just Around the Corner" (1938). Notice that some of the kids were imitating what they saw on the big screen like the gangster movies.

 

Only high class women could afford fur coats and didn't have to worry about animal rights extremeist throwing blood at them.

 

Here was the clothing styles for the 1930's. Take note that one only bought them if you can afford it during the Great Depression.

http://www.thepeoplehistory.com/30sclothes.html

 

Far as getting out on the driver side, yes this was dangerous and was illegal in some areas.

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A guy is sure to be killed the first time he goes into a dangerous situation without his good luck charm. Whether it be a rabbit's foot, his kid's baby shoes, or a photo of his sweetheart, if he forgets it and leaves it behind, then he's finished for sure.

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Ah, but Fred! What movie was it in that had some flyer who took up an old prop-driven aircraft but had his "lucky horseshoe" jam the controls, and he ended up crashing?

 

(...I'm thinkin' it was "Test Pilot", maybe?...just a guess...I'm sure you'll know for sure)

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> {quote:title=hamradio wrote:}{quote}

>

> I have some old photos taken of my area during the 1920's - 40's and were surprised how FEW men actually wore suits or hats in public. During hot summers, most men wore long sleeves with the sleeves rolled up above the elbow, my goodness why someone didn't invent the short sleeve back then is beyond me.

 

My guess is that those of ordinary income, and below, couldn't afford summer-only shirts, and the wealthy wouldn't consider them appropriate. Just a guess. Probably they had short sleeve shirts then, but they weren't popular for adult males, but maybe more common on kids. Kinda like short pants.

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In the old days, when a dame was screaming and crying and yelling, all you had to do was slap her a couple of times or throw a glass of water in her face, and she would calm right down. That doesn't work anymore.

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I was watching the commentary on The Day The Earth Stood Still and even the commentator (Robert Wise perhaps, I don't remember) was saying how funny it was to see two guys eating breakfast in their own house wearing 3-piece suits. What a formal time it used to be, and how informal we are now.

 

But then I've seen movies set in modern LA costumed by East Coast people who dress us up way more formally than we actually dress (i.e. hanging around their own house in shoes, which people don't do unless they're coming or leaving), so who knows if that was even accurate, though it seems like it would be. Still idiosyncrasies even today.

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1. Everyone drank milk with a sandwich. Always.

 

2. Awesome phrases like "Are You On The Level?"

 

3. If you had just pajamas on, you Absoulutely had to put a robe on, or else it was like you were naked

 

I drink Milk with sandwiches and often use the phrase "Are you on the level" because it was so commonly used back then

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Not being seen in your PJs is hilarious to me.

 

One I thoguht of is more on TV than anything, which is that people almost never turn the lights off when they leave the house!

 

THe other one is all those lovely women going to bed with all their makeup on. I know it's because you have to wear makeup to be seen under the lights, esp in technicolor which washes you out like crazy, but it's still hilarious. Only a few times do you see them take it off or wearing cold cream or something, and that's usually for comedy's sake. The one time I thought was great was in The Women when Norma Shearer is going to bed in full makeup as usual, then Virginia whatshername, her daughter, gets in bed with her, kisses her and says, "I taste lipstick!" Then Norma says that she hasn't washed yet. I thought, what a clever way to get around the fact that you can't remove the makeup.

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Good thing Norma didn't remover her make up - she practically vaulted out of bed to go back out to the nightclub and confront "the women"!

 

Last night I watched all the Ann Dvorak pre-codes I recorded and found a few....

 

Franchot Tone puts rubbers on over his shoes before going out in the rain! I remember seeing old fashioned teachers wearing them in the 60's, but I bet you can't even FIND them nowadays. A great practical and forgotten accessory.

 

I also noticed a typo on a sign in the newsroom set, "Make Sure Your Right" most likely referring to getting the facts right in your story.

 

In DOUBLE INDEMNITY the grocery store where Stanwyk & MacMurray meet have signs that say, "Cand Milk" and "Cand Beans". I wasn't sure if that was a typo or just cute abbreviated jargon of the day.

 

I also notice dropping adverbs is nothing new to the language, example, "Don't take it personal" (should be "personally") "Get rich quick" ("quickly") and so on.

 

In the first half of our century, it wasn't unusual for kids to not even graduate from high school. These days more kids graduate, but language sloppiness is just accepted and misspelling is vogue. (ex; Hair Cutz, Ludakris)

I'd venture to say most kids do not know how to spell "light".

 

And did you realize cursive writing is a thing of the past? I have to translate cursive "notes" shown in films to TikiKid! (makes a good "code" for notes between MrTiki & I)

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How about people changing their clothes about 10 times a day? Especially women. Seems like there was an outfit for everything. You'd just have gotten dressed for breakfast, and then you'd have to go get changed for your golf date. Back home to change for the bridge club, oh and then another outfit for afternoon tea. Dress for dinner. Whoops, and then it's back upstairs to the boudouir to change into that killer evening gown, preparatory to going out to that hot nightclub.

Of course, the naughtier movies back then were more about getting UNdressed.

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