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I was wrong about Paulette Goddard...


traceyk65
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OK. Paulette Goddard fans, you win. I hadn't really ever seen any of her movies except The Women and didn;t know much about her excpet that she was up for Scarlett, involved with Chaplin and married Burgess Meredith and Erich Maria Remarque (much to Dietrich's disgust--there's an anecdote in Maria Riva's Dietrich bio where Paulette tells Dietrich, step by step, exactly how to get the best jewelry from a man)

 

Well, this morning was a snow day, so I watched Second Chorus and to my surprise, she was sooo cute. The movie was about 2 trumpet players (Fred Astaire and Burgess Meredith) who hire her to manage their band. She's so good at it that Artie Shaw steals her to be HIS manager and the two boys spend the rest of the movie trying to A) get into Artie Shaw's band and B) get into Paulette's pants (or at least her good graces). She was very likeable and entertaining in it and the music was terrific! My only complaint was that she should have married Artie Shaw in the end--would have been funnier that way! (Didn't Lana Turner once say something like "Sure I married Artie. Everybody did!")

 

Anyway, I still don't see her as Scarlett, anymore than I could see Carole Lombard in the role--both too modern--but I have found a new classic star to watch for!

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I thought she was terrific in "The Women" and also in "The Great Dictator", but have never seen her in anything else either. She seems very natural - modern maybe for GWTW - but it would have been an interesting take on Scarlett. I want to see "Second Chorus" from your description.

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Was she in Modern Times? If so, then Ive seen her in two movies before Second Chorus.

 

I liked Second Chorus too, especially the music. Awesome! But you can't go wrong with swing/Big Band music. I had DVR'd it with the sole purpose of catching Goddard's performance. And I am glad I did.

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>You say that Goddard was too "modern". I have previously posted that I thought that Goddard, more than any other actress of the '30s and '40s, looked like a 21st Century woman.

 

I agree. Have you seen this picture, especially? She could have walked off any red carpet today.

paulettetux_zps97b01da2.png

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Yes, Modern Times was her other Chaplin film. She has a nice dance number in 2nd Chorus too, and comes off well, considering she wasnt a dancer.....

 

Well, Dietrich wasnt very different. (Using men) Pot calling the kettle black. She was probably jealous Paulette married Remarque (sp?) and she didnt (they were an item for awhile).....

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>Well, Dietrich wasnt very different. (Using men) Pot calling the kettle black. She was probably jealous Paulette married Remarque (sp?) and she didnt (they were an item for awhile).....

 

Dietrich was mad that he married her, according to Riva. She called Goddard that "terrible woman." According to Riva, she hated it when any of her exes got married. She considered it a betrayal, whcih is kind of ironic, considering. ;)

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Can anyone here explain or define what it is about her "looks" that we see as "modern"?

 

We saw a 35mm screening of MODERN TIMES a few years ago. Leaving the theater, MrTiki said, "Wow who was the leading lady? She was a knockout!"

 

When I see Jean Harlow on film, she looks odd; her hard black lips, cartoony eyebrows, white sculpted hair. I just can't relate to that look except in a goth sort of way.

Paulette wore her make up very naturally, not unlike Ingrid Bergman. She exuded a "joy of life", and pluck making her really likeable. I could totally see her as Scarlett, Leigh's only close rival for the part (in my mind)

Paulette has a perfectly proportioned face and body-we're attracted to that too. Look at Liz Taylor.

 

Any fan of Paulette's needs to see Paulette as a pirate-REAP THE WILD WIND '42, great dramatic role in SO PROUDLY WE HAIL '43 and elevating so-so writing in fun THE CRYSTAL BALL '43 and THE CAT & THE CANARY '39.

 

I highly recommend reading her biography too.

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>Can anyone here explain or define what it is about her "looks" that we see as "modern"?

 

I think it's the open-ness of her face and timelessness of her look. Jean Harlow, as you mentioned, is very much a product of her time--the white-blonde hair, the shaved eyebrows, the harsh make-up. So are a lot of other stars, even Liz Taylor--she came up in the 50's and adopted that silly helmet head hairdo, then the bouffant look in the 60's etc. Paulette's look is less defined--except for the clothing, she could be in any sit-com or romantic comedy today without too much change in her look and would fit right in.

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It's hard to pinpoint why Paulette comes across as so modern. It isnt just her look, its her overall style as well. Just something about her overall persona. I've thought that ever since I came across her years ago. She just doesnt seem "dated'.........

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