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Ronald Colman


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Has anyone ever heard of TCM or any other cable network having a Ronald Colman Film Festival?

He starred in "A Tale of Two Cities" and "The Prisoner of Zenda" and had such a flair and sophistication that I have seen matched by few others. I would say that he has a 'jene se quoir' but I don't know how to spell it in the French and know that I screwed it up, but you get the drift!

I really think he is an unknown and/or underappreciated by those of us who follow the movies and really understand how much more was done with so much less in the days before computer imaging and one movie stardom hyped by Hollywood and fake "raves" from bogus critics.


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My favourite Ronald Colman picture is The Unholy Garden. I know it's not regarded as one of his finer vehicles but there's a breezy charm about it, a typically funny performance by Warren Hymer as Colman's buddy, as well as a great roster of familiar character faces in addition to Fay Wray, always a welcome sight. The story is ludicrous but it's been given the polished treatment by Goldwyn, who didn't like how it turned out, and Colman is marvelously watchable in it.


Colman was a fine, cultivated actor, who's wife was the wonderful Benita Hume. Colman didn't approve of George Sanders (I wonder how many did), who had obviously expressed interest in Hume while Colman was still alive and, after he died, Sanders wasted zero in asking Hume to marry him, which she surprisingly enough did and they lived happily-ever-after until she died. George Sanders was such a cad! Gotta love that guy.



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Colman! Mmmmm...I love his voice and little mustache. I heard that at one time he was considered for the part of Rhett Butler in GWTW. Of course, Clark Gable was perfect, but I always wondered what Coleman would have been like as Rhett? Probably more refined. I dont' know he'd have had that "devil may care" attitude Clark used with Rhett.




I'd love to see his silent version of STELLA DALLAS from 1925, where he is Stephen Dallas. Please TCM, show this one, just for me??

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I've seen many Colman films and he's one of my favorite actors (especially because of "Lost Horizon", "A Tale of Two Cities", "A Double Life", "Arrowsmith", "The Prisoner of Zenda" and "If I were King").


I'd love to see some of his films which have eluded me, like "Cynara", "The Light that Failed", "Champagne for Caesar", "Under Two Flags", "Raffles" and "The Masquerader"...Not to talk about his Silents, of which I have not seen any. Especially I'd like to see "Lady Windermere's Fan", "Beau Geste", "The White Sister", "Romola" and his four movies opposite Vilma Banky.



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featio, Raffles is a hugely enjoyable film and Colman is simply marvelous in it. He coasts through the picture with that trademark easy-going charm that leaves you in awe of him. That easy-going charm might seem quaint to the modern eye but, as anybody who likes Colman knows, that's what made him so unique. Raffles was issued on VHS but it's pretty pricey now. I was lucky to tape it off cable TV years ago. Maybe TCM will someday air some of the Goldwyn early talkies. I've never seen a Colman silent either, I'd certainly love to.

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Hi Tim, Fernando, Johnny & Alix,


Although I have never seen a Ronald Colman silent movie either, I once saw a scene from one of his Vilmy Banky movies at a Paramount tribute to the silent film stars in 1961 or 62.


It was called "The Eternal Flame", I think, and it showed Vilma in a tight black evening dress leaning up against a wall. The camera pulls back to show Ronald kneeling at her feet and gripping her wrist. I think he just asked her to marry him (?)...

She then turns to face the camera, closes her eyes and puts her head back (very silent movie queen!). He rises behind her and kisses her on the neck and shoulder and she places her hand on his face and caresses his cheek. He then kisses the palm of her hand (very silent movie hero!)...

She then turns to him to reveal a backless dress with jewels down the back (also very silent movie queen!) and then, they kiss and the camera goes in for the 'close-up' and lingers there on their two heads for a moment and then -- goes in for a 'close-up' of their lips, which fill the whole screen!!!!!!

The scene fades to black.


There was no ripping of clothes and baring of body parts or anything smutty -- but you just knew they were going to do it!!!!! Tastefully, of course....


It was all very slowly and sensuously done and the passion between the two was very evident. They smouldered. I understand they were a great team in the movies.




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Thanks for the feedback on "Raffles" Johnny; I remember watching the 1939 remake with David Niven and Olivia de Havilland, many decades ago.


And Larry, thank you for the detailed account of that Banky-Colman Silent...Banky was very beautiful; she also starred opposite Valentino in "Son of the Sheik" and married Rod LaRocque.

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