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"Movies" Network showed Sunset Boulevard a few time last night...  What a great film.  I hadn't seen it in years.   William Holden should have won Best Actor award.   I think Swanson looked a bit older than 50 in the film.    Watching William Holden emerge from the pool was the best scene of all.   I think he must have been the most handsome actor I've seen....and that voice.....they don't make 'em like that anymore.

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"Movies" Network showed Sunset Boulevard a few time last night...  What a great film.  I hadn't seen it in years.   William Holden should have won Best Actor award.   I think Swanson looked a bit older than 50 in the film.    Watching William Holden emerge from the pool was the best scene of all.   I think he must have been the most handsome actor I've seen....and that voice.....they don't make 'em like that anymore.

I think that Sunset Boulevard was the most important film of William Holden's career. It made him a true front ranked star after years of being an actor slogging through a series of largely forgettable films (and performances).

 

Holden, starting with this film, became one of the great cynical anti-heroes of the movies, Bogart's equal but a far sexier guy. I love his delivery of the voice over narration in Wilder's film. Holden lets you glimpse the potential decency in his character before the corruption sets in. It's a great performance.

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I think that Sunset Boulevard was the most important film of William Holden's career. It made him a true front ranked star after years of being an actor slogging through a series of largely forgottable films (and performances).

 

Holden, starting with this film, became one of the great cynical anti-heroes of the movies, Bogart's equal but a far sexier guy. I love his delivery of the voice over narration in Wilder's film. Holden lets you glimpse the potential decency in his character before the corruption sets in. It's a great performance.

Indeed!

 

Years ago, veteran actor and local Detroit movie show host BILL KENNEDY( the executioner in JOAN OF ARC, and opening sequence narrator of the old SUPERMAN TV series) once showed SUNSET BOULEVARD (it was the first time I had seen it) and it took YEARS for me to figure out what he meant when he said, ..."THIS is the movie that GAVE BIRTH to Bill Holden!"

 

 

Sepiatone

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5xk6m1.jpg

 

                            Portrait: 1939
 
I'm always amazed by the difference in appearance between his younger and later years. Here he is at around twenty years of age - looks more like Robert Stack.
 
I think it was Golden Boy (1939) - I was watching that last year and couldn't believe my eyes. His face looked sooo familiar, but I just couldn't place it. That's it in the portrait.
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"Movies" Network showed Sunset Boulevard a few time last night...  What a great film.  I hadn't seen it in years.   William Holden should have won Best Actor award.   I think Swanson looked a bit older than 50 in the film.    Watching William Holden emerge from the pool was the best scene of all.   I think he must have been the most handsome actor I've seen....and that voice.....they don't make 'em like that anymore.

 

I like SUNSET BOULEVARD but I always thought William Holden looked too old for his part.

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Nah...I never think Holden looked to old for his part in Sunset Boulevard.   He looked FABULOUS.   I wish a down-and-out writer who looked like that would knock on my door. :wub:

 

That photo from Golden Boy - it does look like Robert Stack.   Holden was about 21 years old there.  He didn't have the cleft in his chin and I think that's one of the differences.

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Nah...I never think Holden looked to old for his part in Sunset Boulevard.   He looked FABULOUS.   I wish a down-and-out writer who looked like that would knock on my door. :wub:

 

That photo from Golden Boy - it does look like Robert Stack.   Holden was about 21 years old there.  He didn't have the cleft in his chin and I think that's one of the differences.

 

I agree that Holden didn't look too old for his part in SB.   He was the right age for a down-and-out writer  (a younger man can't be down and out since they have never been up-and-in!).

 

As for the cleft in this chin;   Does a feature like that occur with aging?    It sure looks like it with Holden (or at least it became much more prominent).  But I also wonder if make-up wasn't used to make this feature of his stand out more as he aged.

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I agree that Holden didn't look too old for his part in SB.   He was the right age for a down-and-out writer  (a younger man can't be down and out since they have never been up-and-in!).

 

 

I disagree. He didn't look that much younger than Gloria Swanson.

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5xk6m1.jpg

 

Portrait: 1939

 

I'm always amazed by the difference in appearance between his younger and later years. Here he is at around twenty years of age - looks more like Robert Stack.

 

I think it was Golden Boy (1939) - I was watching that last year and couldn't believe my eyes. His face looked sooo familiar, but I just couldn't place it. That's it in the portrait.

That is William Holden?? I never would have believed it. He is very handsome. He was in Sunset Blvd too but this picture- wow
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I disagree. He didn't look that much younger than Gloria Swanson.

 

Interesting.    As you know one key to the storyline in SB is the older women with the younger gigolo man.   So you're saying that since the two look similar in age this part of the storyline falls flat?      

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That is William Holden?? I never would have believed it. He is very handsome. He was in Sunset Blvd too but this picture- wow

Right after I posted that, I re-autoprogrammed my tv, to retrieve some channels that are being shifted around, and happened upon GetTv. To my great delight, Golden Boy was on! What a coincidence.

:)

 

Wouldn't you know it, though.. they replay many of their films 2 or 3 times a day - but not this one. A one shot deal for today only.

:(

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Right after I posted that, I re-autoprogrammed my tv, to retrieve some channels that are being shifted around, and happened upon GetTv. To my great delight, Golden Boy was on! What a coincidence.

:)

 

Wouldn't you know it, though.. they replay many of their films 2 or 3 times a day - but not this one. A one shot deal for today only.

:(

I have not seen Golden Boy yet. Was Holden good in it? Wasn't that role written especially for John Garfield?
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I have not seen Golden Boy yet. Was Holden good in it? Wasn't that role written especially for John Garfield?

From IMDb:
 
When Clifford Odets wrote his play, he had John Garfield in mind for the Joe Bonaparte part, but the Group Theatre company chose Luther Adler instead. Shortly afterward, Garfield left the Group Theater and was Hollywood bound.
 
According to biographer Bob Thomas, both John Garfield and Tyrone Power turned the role of Joe Bonaparte down.
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In the film of Golden Boy, William Holden made no attempt to act like a New York/New Jersey working class lad, which is so crucial to the story. The movie might as well have been set in the Midwest. John Garfield did ultimately get to play the lead on Broadway, in 1952. Garfield, who appeared in several plays by Odets and was the original lead in Awake and Sing, died at the age of 39, a month after his final performance in the revival of Golden Boy.

 

I saw a revival of the play on Broadway a few years ago and the old film shortly after -- I hadn't seen it in quite some time. One thing about the film -- I think the Hollywood "happy" ending works better than the play. The double suicide that is implied at the end of the play has always seemed a bit extreme to me, given the circumstances of the characters.

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In the film of Golden Boy, William Holden made no attempt to act like a New York/New Jersey working class lad, which is so crucial to the story. The movie might as well have been set in the Midwest. John Garfield did ultimately get to play the lead on Broadway, in 1952. Garfield, who appeared in several plays by Odets and was the original lead in Awake and Sing, died at the age of 39, a month after his final performance in the revival of Golden Boy.

 

I saw a revival of the play on Broadway a few years ago and the old film shortly after -- I hadn't seen it in quite some time. One thing about the film -- I think the Hollywood "happy" ending works better than the play. The double suicide that is implied at the end of the play has always seemed a bit extreme to me, given the circumstances of the characters.

 

Garfield would have been great in the movie along with Stanwyck,  but since age is a topic here,  at 39,  and after all the troubles he had,  Garfield was too old at 39 to play the golden boy.     

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I have not seen Golden Boy yet. Was Holden good in it?

 

While I admit that I am a person of strong opinions, there are very few films made before 1950 that I would genuinely say I "hate." There are some that I "don't care for", some I think could be better,  and some that bore me, but "hate"? No.

 

There is only one title from that time period that I will say I "hate" without reserve, and that movie is Golden Boy.

 

It is a baad, CLUNKY, poorly written film in which Holden is not good (and that perm!), but escapes being the worst thing in it because of Lee J. Cobb's jaw-droppingly awful performance as his immigrant father-(like bad on a "Sofia in Godfather III" -level scale, but in a whoooole different way.). Seriously, Holden owed HIM a bigger debt than Stanwyck- who should've allowed young Bill to bail on this turkey at the first open exit door he saw.

 

Everything about it is tripe.

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Okay- so let me get this straight:

 

Holden thinks Holden was too old in Sunset?

And Golden Boy?

Holden, do you find Holden too old in Golden?

 

I've never seen GOLDEN BOY, LHF, and based on your comments posted elsewhere in this thread I don't think I want to.

 

Based on the photo posted of William Holden (the one without the cleft in his chin), I think he looks right age-wise for GOLDEN BOY. 

 

I like SUNSET BOULEVARD, but from the first time I saw it I thought that the age difference between his Joe and Swanson's Norma didn't appear to be that much.

I see that she was 51 and he was 32 when the movie was released, but I think she looks her age and that he looks older than his age in the movie. 

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Re: Golden Boy.  This definitely is not my favorite William Holden or Barbara Stanwyck film.  There are only really two reasons why I found this film interesting and they have nothing to do with the film itself.  1) Holden is so young.  I know he was about 21 when he made this film and he looks it.  It's amazing to me how much his looks changed in the 10 or so years between Golden Boy and Sunset Boulevard.  I hardly recognized him in Golden Boy.  His voice was different and he didn't even look the same.  He sort of looks like a younger, less beefy Tony Curtis.  Tony Curtis would have been a great Golden Boy if they had made the film in the late 40s instead of the late 30s.  I think another issue with Golden Boy is Holden's inexperience.  This film was his first real role and he was having many issues during the production of this film.  It was almost to the point where he was going to be replaced.  Which brings me to... 2) The other reason I found this film interesting is the behind the scenes story of how Barbara Stanwyck fought for William Holden to remain in the film after the producers wanted to replace him, which began a lifelong friendship between Stanwyck and Holden.

 

I think the casting of Lee J. Cobb (who was only 7 years older than Holden) was ridiculous.  Of all the great older character actors that would have been available at the time, they had to makeup a younger person to pretend to be twice their age.  It just didn't work for me.

 

 

Re: Sunset Boulevard.  I think Holden was perfect for this role.  I disagree that he was "too old."  Sunset Boulevard I believe takes place in a contemporary time, so 1949-1950 or so.  Norma Desmond was presumably a star during the late 1910s through the late 1920s.  I would also speculate that she was in her 20s during this time, maybe early 30s... so by the time 1949-1950 rolls around, she would be at least 50, and I think she looks it.  Holden's character, it makes sense that he'd have to be at least 30 because he's been working as a writer for awhile.  I don't believe he's intended to be a teenybopper or anything, it's clear that he's been around a little bit.  A 20-year age difference between Norma and Joe is realistic and apparent in this film.  Gloria Swanson was 19 years older than Holden. 

 

Now, if original choice Montgomery Clift had chosen to take the role, I don't think it would have been as successful.  As much as I love Clift, I don't think his "Joe Gillis" would have been anywhere near as good as Holden's.  Clift's characters always seem to have a vulnerability about them.  Whereas, Holden's have a more cynical tone.  Holden's characterization works better for the Gillis character who really isn't taking Norma seriously, he is really just using her to earn some money and to hideout from the men who are chasing him.  He just ends up getting consumed in Norma's world. 

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There is only one title from that time period that I will say I "hate" without reserve, and that movie is Golden Boy.

 

It is a baad, CLUNKY, poorly written film in which Holden is not good (and that perm!), but escapes being the worst thing in it because of Lee J. Cobb's jaw-droppingly awful performance as his immigrant father-(like bad on a "Sofia in Godfather III" -level scale,

 

Holden does NOT look like a boxer in this film. He looks like a handsome young educated tennis player. His face is too sweet and un-blemished to have ever been hit by anything harder than a teen girl's kiss.

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Holden does NOT look like a boxer in this film. He looks like a handsome young educated tennis player. His face is too sweet and un-blemished to have ever been hit by anything harder than a teen girl's kiss.

Especially if he looked like he did in the photo posted earlier. I see why Odets had John Garfield in mind for this. Too bad he didn't do the movie.
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Especially if he looked like he did in the photo posted earlier. I see why Odets had John Garfield in mind for this. Too bad he didn't do the movie.

Even Garfield couldnt save "golden boy"- he would just be a lot better than Holden in the role. seriously: Stanwyck cannot even save this movie.

 

it has major script issues.

 

but honestly and in kind of a strange, backhanded way, I would totally screen "Golden Boy" for a room full of aspiring screenwriters and actors because it is a perfect example of a film where nearly everything is done wrong...except (sorry haters) by Stanwyck, whose performance is a bit like watching someone running around trying to patch holes in the Titanic with duct tape and I respect her for it. (see also: "Meet John Doe." (1941))

 

and I want to say for some reason that adolph menjou is in that and he's also fine.

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