Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Alfred Hitchcock 30-50% off? Yes please!

I really need to stay out of Barnes and Noble when they have things on sale. I was on my way home and was probably two blocks away from Barnes and Noble when I got an email from them talking about their great after holiday sales. Without hesitation I pulled in there and my wallet let out a little cry. 

I was in and the first thing I see is the book 'Marilyn Monroe: Intimate Exposures' by Bernard of Hollywood for 50% off. [Wound up getting it for $15.75, regular $35] Grabbed it without hesitation. I knew that this was going to be a great trip. I then headed up to my usual spot upstairs in the DVD section. Things only got better!

I am just browsing to see if they had anything new on sale and bam! Alfred Hitchcock on sale! Got the Limited Edition Alfred Hitchcock Essential Collection that I had been wanting, but didn't want to spend the $59.99 for it. The set includes Rear Window, Vertigo, North By Northwest, Psycho, and The Birds... and get this, it was only $31.49! Than I look to the left and there is one of those cheapie box sets with lesser known moves that usually sells for $9.99 that I got for $4.49. $4.49 for 20 of Hitchcock's films?! Yes sir! And finally I ran across Dial M For Murder for only $10! 

Some people need to drink or do drugs to get a high... all I need is to is walk out of that store with a bag full of Classic Hollywood goodies and I am one happy camper. As if all of the other stuff wasn't good enough, I ran across the book Lucille Ball Treasures and picked it up for $11.24!

Another great trip! $150 in merchandise for $75! Merry Christmas to me!

Monday, December 26, 2011

Put the blame on mame...

... and the holidays for my lack of updates. I work retail and the last couple of weeks have been so hectic! I have had many things planned, but couldnt get around to putting them together. Now that the holiday shopping season is over with, I will be updating with some new posts soon!

I do want to apologize to Backlots and Forever Classics for missing out on their wonderful blogathons. I really wanted to take part, but I just didn't have the time. Make sure you check out the Dueling Divas and Humphrey Bogart blogathons to read the other contributions!

I have been able to squeeze in some Classic Hollywood things into my life recently though! I have purchased or received the following: Rita Hayworth Film Collection ['You Excite Me' from Tonight and Every Night is awesome!], 'Marilyn Monroe: Metamorphosis', 'The Marilyn Monroe Treasures', and 'Judy: A Legendary Film Career'! The Judy book was a gift, but the other items I got for great prices! All three for $80! The Rita Hayworth Film Collection sells for $65 regular price by itself! I also was able to catch It's A Wonderful Life at the local theater! What a great film! I cried at least 4 times during it!

Well that is all for now... everyone have a great holiday!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Film | Gentlemen Prefer Blondes's Lost Musical Number

I am excited to say this will be the 100th post here on Blame Mame! I can't wait to write 1,000 more! I really am appreciative to the followers and other readers who make their daily stops by the blog. I love seeing your comments on the entries and over on the Blame Mame Facebook page!

If you weren't able to read between the lines through past posts, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes is pretty much my favorite movie of all time! And with a cast that includes two of my top ladies (Marilyn Monroe & Jane Russell), musical numbers to die for, and stunning Travilla designed gowns... how could this film now be at the top of everyone's list?

Some of you may know this and some of you may not, but there was a musical number cut from the film before its theatrical release. Whenever I found this out I was so excited, but then I learned it may be lost forever. Most of the time the film that was cut from films literally was left 'on the cutting room floor.' How could there be a musical number from my favorite movie that I will never get to see?!?

I haven't been able to find out much about it, but I do know it was titled Four French Dances and would have been toward the end of the film when the girls make it to France. My best guess would be that it would have come right before the 'Diamond's Are A Girl's Best Friend' number because Lorelei and Dorothy can be scene in the costume when Mr. Esmund goes backstage to talk to the girls. From the productions stills stills I have seen, it looks like it would have been an amazing number. If you are interested, you can see a small clip from the scene in the film's trailer. Marilyn and Jane can be seen walking on a ladder. [around the 2.12 mark]

I also heard of another musical number that was cut from the film titled 'Down Boy'. I know the number was performed by Marilyn... possibly in the scene where she is dancing with Piggy in the gold lame gown on the ship. I think I read somewhere it was cut because the gown was too risque to be shown in theaters. I know I have heard the music from the number somewhere, but that was over 5 years ago and I cant find it again. If anyone knows where I can find the music, please let me know!

And as if that weren't enough, there is also a costume that was unused from this film that can be seen in wardrobe test for the film. The costume looks very revealing at first glance, but it is just another illusion by the master designer Travilla. I wonder when Marilyn would have worn it?

You can find more images from the Four French Dances number behind the cut...

Friday, December 16, 2011

Reel Life | Jean Harlow Collection

I have been wanting to get the Jean Harlow: 100th Anniversary Collection since came out in October. I was actually stalking the Warner Archive until the day it was released, and wouldn't you know I wasn't able to get it then? I then figured I should wait to get an awesome coupon from Barnes and Noble before I ordered it. I wound up getting the set for $39 with free shipping! It wasn't supposed to ship until December 29th, but it showed up a few days ago! I cant wait to dig into this box set of blonde and glamor!

So now that I have this set, it means I only need 6 more films to complete my Jean Harlow filmography! If you know where I can find the following, please let me know!

Red Dust (1932)
The Beast of the City (1932)
Three Wise Girls (1932)
Goldie (1931)
Iron Man (1931)
The Secret Six (1931)

One of these days I will finish my Jane Russell Filmography Project and I believe Jean Harlow will be my next subject. Anywho... the Top 10 Gowns list will be up this weekend!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Photo | Christmas Cheer With Liz

How about a little Christmas cheer with Elizabeth Taylor and an adorable kitten? I cant believe Christmas is only 11 days away! To get into the spirit of the season I will be watching Christmas In Connecticut (1945) and writing a review! I also want to do a post about what I would love to receive for Christmas... so please check back!

And in case you missed it, please stop by the last post and give your thoughts on the top gowns of Classic Hollywood!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Gowns! Do you have a favorite?

◄ Before you read this post... did you notice the new Christmas banner? Lovely isn't it?

So here I am again with another first on Blame Mame... a Top 10 list. I love doing things like this and this series is going to be started with my Top 10 Classic Hollywood Gowns. I love the fashions of Classic Hollywood sometimes as much as I love the movies and actors. Give me something designed by Adrian, Travilla or Edith Head and I am set! So before my list is revealed, I want to know know which gowns do you love? Please leave a comment here or over on the Blame Mame Facebook page!

Here are two gorgeous gowns that didn't quite make my top 10...

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Reel Life | Who, What, Where, When, Why #1

In the coming weeks I will be exploring my interest in the golden age of Hollywood in a new series I am calling Who What Where When Why. I will go through my introductions to old Hollywood, who influenced my interest, why it interest me, and what keeps me interested. I am often asked why this era in cinema history has become a big part of my life and I think this series will help me put into words what has always been hard to explain. Below is the answer to why I love this time period in Hollywood history so much. Make sure to check back for the other parts!

They didn't call the Hollywood studio system the dream machine for nothing. Hollywood was a place where people went to make their dreams come true and produced a product that allowed the public to drift off into a dream world. You could escape the pressure of life and for a few hours sit in a darkened room watching the movie gods lure you into a a world very different from your own. The stars were larger than life and it was those stars that drew in the crowds my the theater full.

From Musicals to Film Noir, you were brought into a world that was fully created for your viewing pleasure. You could be dancing in top hat and tails with Fred Astaire or watch Joan Crawford go from shop girl to a wealthy socialite. There were beautiful movie sets, gorgeous costumes, and an overall feeling that everything would be okay in the end. That is one thing I love most about these films... most of them bring the story full circle and you don't leave the film not knowing what happened. In many of today's films the endings can be grim or vague, I prefer a conclusion with the end of my films.

Another thing I love about this time period is the fact that some of the biggest stars of the period, even today, were able to rise of the hard lives they were given and become movie stars that the world adored. While some stars had the obvious talent that made it easy to break into Hollywood, stars like Joan Crawford and Marilyn Monroe had to work hard to show they deserved their time in the spotlight. It is motivating to me to see someone go from nothing to being an icon on the silver screen. It makes you believe you can do anything you set your mind to.

I was reading an article shared by Movies Unlimited about how modern films just do not stand up against the classics of the golden age. Everything the author wrote touched on my feelings on the modern vs classic film debate. That period of time in film was like a phenomenon. It was a time where the right people came together to create this world of imagination we have all come to love. To create a world that would become a major part of my life. The person who wrote that article called classic Hollywood a passion and I don't know about anyone else, but that is my exact sentiment as well.

If you were to tell me in would never see another gory horror film or another romantic comedy starring Sarah Jessica Parker I probably wouldn't blink an eye. But tell me I would never see another Astaire/Rogers film or another Techinicolor musical like Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and I would probably have a fit. Not probably... I would most definitely have a fit. I don't think the people in my life realize how important these movies and the world that went with them are to me..

Until you have enjoyed something like I do with Classic Hollywood it is hard to understand why it is something I like talking about or writing about or researching. It has become a way of life for me and that will never change. Give me a black and white movie or a Girshwin filled soundtrack and I am one happy clam.

Whenever I have been asked, why do you like old movies so much, it is sometimes hard to give a reason. If someone doesn't have a passion for something it isn't easy to explain a passion. It's the same case with football fans for me. I don't understand the fandom nor do I think I am capable of understanding. Classic Hollywood had imagination and a sense of mystic about it. Stars were created and their images were a commodity that was guarded by the studios. Unlike today's stars, you could look up at the icons on the silver screen and admire them for their talents and not their hardships in life. All I can say to those who ask why I love classic Hollywood is that I just do. The glamor, the music, the movies, the stars... That is why I love classic Hollywood.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Old Hollywood Headlines #3

Here Marlene and I are again with another addition of Old Hollywood Headlines! If you have seen an article or have a post you would like me to include in Old Hollywood Headlines, feel free to email me at blamemameblog[at]

Blame Mame

001. Earlier this week, Blame Mame did its first interactive post when the 'Guess the Starlet' game was introduced on the blog and on the Blame Mame Facebook page. Being new to the Classic Film Blog Community, I'm never too sure if anyone is interested in what I have to say, so I was really excited to see that 7 people took a guess at the mystery lady! I can't wait for the next little game!


001. Ever wonder what makes a film a 'classic'? Is it content, is it the stars or is it just because it was made during a certain time period? Classic Film and TV Cafe explore this topic with their first annual Classic Film Survey.

002. Rianna over at Frankly, My Dear talks about how Hollywood jumped in to the  war effort after the bombing of Pearl Harbor... everyone from Bette Davis to Clark Gable did their share! Read about it here.

003. The Silver Screen Affair added to my need to see the Katharine Hepburn film Alice Adams, with their delightful review of the film.

004. Did you know Judy Garland and Marlene Dietrich were good friends? Well I didn't, but thanks to Backlots new post Judy on Marlene... I have learned something I hadn't known before!

005. Mandy over at Time Machine To The Twenties did an article on the superstitions on some of Classic Hollywood's biggest stars... Bette Davis and Mae West didn't like whistling in their dressing room. Who knew?

Reel Life

001. I do have my laptop back now and more free time than before, so I hope to start writing more on Blame Mame. Many of my posts have been film reviews, but I plan on getting back into writing my original articles (such as Jane Russell Sings! and Bette Davis: The Singer) and diving more into the people behind the magic of Hollywood (such as Kay Thompson). Remember to keep up-to-date with Blame Mame, like us on Facebook or follow the blog on Blogger... that way we show up on your Feeds!

002. If you have been keeping up with the blog, you can tell I have been writing quite a bit about the blonde bombshells of old Hollywood, and it doesn't look like that is going to stop anytime soon! Today I finally ordered my Jean Harlow: 100th Anniversary Collection DVD box set! I had been waiting to get a good membership coupon from Barnes and Noble to buy it and today I got a 25% off savings! Im pretty sure there will be a bigger coupon before Christmas, but I couldn't wait anymore! I got the set for only $39 with free shipping, but it wont be shipping until December 29th. I can't wait for it to come... Jean Harlow film fest anyone?

003. I also need to get back on track with the forgotten Filmography Project. I still have many Jane Russell films to see! If you don't know what I am talking about... check it out here.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Jayne Mansfield Makes It!

I guess you could say I have been on a blonde bombshell kick lately. I've been enjoying the likes of Marilyn Monroe and the lovely Jayne Mansfield. There is something about the style of these 50's blonde actresses. Although I have only seen Jayne Mansfield in one film, she is grown to be one of my favorite actresses of the Golden Era of Hollywood. With a film like The Girl Can't Help It, she doesn't need any others to qualify in my book. But that doesn't mean I wouldn't love to see more of her films.

Something I have recently rediscovered is Jayne's hip, swinging tune That Makes It from the 1966 film Las Vegas Hillbillies. In the song Jayne coos about the type of man she wants and the type that 'makes it' happen for her. She wants a man with dark hair that moves and grooves. 

In the video Jayne is seen twisting and swaying her hips to this groovy track, while she talks on the phone. The look on her face says she is a girl who knows what she wants and wont except anything else...

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Game | Guess The Starlet [Starlet Revealed]

Not only did I post this here on the blog, I also listed it on the Blame Mame Facebook page, and got quite a few answers. I do want to thank everyone who gave an answer, it is nice to know people are reading!

So without further adieu, here is that future star from the previous post...

It's Marilyn Monroe!

It's pretty amazing how a persona and hair change can make such a big difference!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Game | Guess The Starlet

A little something different, thought I would try a more interactive post. Hopefully you guys like it!

Do you know who this future icon is? She may look different here, but you can see the sparkle that made her so special. These photos are of the same person, just a few years apart. Leave your guesses in the comment section.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Photos | Rita In Color

To me there is nothing better than a color photo of Rita Hayworth. Now do not get me wrong, even in black and white Rita's inner light shines through, but in color you cant help but love her. I know she was known as the Love Goddess and was one of the top pin-ups in the 1940's, but she is too sweet to be sexy. Her smile could light up anyone's dark moments and let's not even start with her ability to captivate you while she dances... here are a few of my favorite color photos of Rita.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Reel Life | My Week With Marilyn (2011)

It was a few months ago, somewhere on the web, that I learned about the new almost bio-pic about Marilyn Monroe titled My Week With Marilyn. Immediately I knew I had to see this. As everyone knows this isn't the first time Marilyn has been the subject of a film, but this time the part was going to Michelle Williams, an actress that most wouldn't have pictured in the role. In the films I have seen Williams in, she fully embodied the character she was portraying in the film. This had me very interested to see her take on the famous star. Would it be another floozy sexified portrayal or would it be the first real role based on the actual woman behind the image.

The film was released on November 23rd, so I kept checking my local theaters to see when I could see the film. To my disappointment, it seemed as though it wasn't going to be released in New Orleans, or anywhere near here to be exact. But I didn't give up and kept checking the movie listing any how. Good thing I did because it came to a theater in the city just a few days after its release.

It was playing at the Theaters of Canal Place, which is a really high-end mall. I had heard many times how nice the theater was. This theater catered to the people with money. With  plush arm chairs and waiters to bring you anything you wanted to order, it seemed like it would be a really classy experience. I was NOT let down by the experience, I just shutter at the tole it has taken on my bank account. Matinee ticket... $10. Popcorn and soda... $11 (plus 17% gratuity automatically added). Parking... $15. Yes, to see My Week With Marilyn I spent $36. While I really enjoyed the film, I cant even remember the last time I went out to dinner with someone and the total bill was that much. I guess you learn... find cheaper parking and bring your own drinks/snacks.

The theater was gorgeous though. When you go to purchase a ticket, you must use the touch screen register that lets you pick your seat in advance. You then take your ticket to an usher who brings you to your very large spacious seat. There isn't a ton of seating in the auditorium... maybe 30-40 seats. You are then handed a really fancy menu with silverware (yes you can get actual food) and your order is taken. The screen was smaller than what I am normally used to, but it was so crisp and sharp. The movie looked beautiful... almost seemed like HD like a Blu-Ray.

Now that I have bored you with the details of this movie experience, you are probably asking yourself... where is the review? Well this post was just about the experience of seeing this film. I will write a review when I have more time.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Old Hollywood Headlines #2

And here we are with out second addition of Old Hollywood Headlines. This hasn't exactly worked out as a weekly write up, so I wont continue to promise that it will be, but I hope you enjoy!

Blame Mame

001. I do want to apologize for the lack of updates, but a few things have happened in my personal life and I have been without a computer. I will try to stop by here as much as possible, but it is hard to update from an iPhone. 

002. And as usual, don't forget to 'Like' Blame Mame over on Facebook!

► Blogospshere
001. Over on Facebook, Comet Over Hollywood shared a rare screen test Judy Garland did for the 1967 film Valley Of The Dolls. The role later went to Susan Hayward, and from what Jessica  said... it was for the best. Nonetheless, it is fun to see Judy in these very candid shots. Check it out here.
002. Angela over at The Hollywood Revue continues to highlighting 30 Pre-Code films in 30 days. She even mentioned one of my favorites, the Norma Shearer film The Divorcee and even got me wanting to see in the 1930 Joan Crawford film Paid!

003. There is still time to get your posts ready for Bette's Classic Movie Blog's Classic Moustaches For Movember Blogathon! I've already completed my entry about the great Clark Gable and his fine piece of facial hair.

004. Speaking of Blogathons, over at The Scarlett Olive, you can check out all of the contributions to the For The Boys Blogathon. It's interesting to see so much testosterone on the usually very feminine classic film blog... which is the point of this blogathon. Make sure to check out my post about 3 of Hitchcock's films... what else would a boy need?

005. On the Movies Unlimited site MovieFanFare, there is an article about which films should be shown to young people to keep their interest. I replied on their Facebook with Gentlemen Prefer Blondes for the ladies and North By Northwest for the guys. Do you guys have any suggestions? Which films would you show people my age (early twenties) to get them interested in those 'boring old movies'?

► Reel Life

001. As I am sure most of you know, the new motion picture My Week With Marilyn starring Michelle Williams as the most famous of all of the blonde bombshells came out on November 23rd. From what has been said about the film, Williams gives quite a performance and gives life to the often misunderstood star. It just started playing here in New Orleans on Friday, so I definitely will have to check it out ASAP. [PS. You may have noticed I changed the picture on this layout to honor this new film and the star it is based on]

If you want to see the film for yourself, check out!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Film | Hitch Triple-Feature (For The Boys)

I had a different idea in mind when I decided to put into The Scarlett Olive's For The Boys Blogathon, but with recent events that happened in my life, I was unable to do what I wanted. This was a post I had already written, but I think it fits well with the theme. These masterpiece films by Hitchcock are full of suspense and beautiful women... sounds like these films are 'for the boys.' So here it goes...

I've recently learned how much I adore Alfred Hitchcock. After seeing my first Hitchcock film, Vertigo, a month or so ago, I have been hooked. Every one of the films I have seen so far have become instant favorites of mine. I find myself thinking about how clever these films are and how beautiful they are to watch. Below you will find reviews of three of his films... we'll go ahead and call it a Hitch Triple-Feature!


"Is this the man she was waiting for...
or the man who was waiting for her?"

Ray Milland as Tony Wendice
Grace Kelly as Margot Mary Wendice
Robert Cummings as Mark Halliday
John Williams as Chief Inspector Hubbard

Director Alfred Hitchcock's masterpiece of double-cross and intrigue stars Ray Milland as former tennis champ Tony Wendice, who concocts a plan to kill his rich but unfaithful wife (Grace Kelly), who's embroiled in a liaison with a writer (Robert Cummings). When Tony's plans go awry, he improvises a second act of deceit, but the entire bloody affair turns out to be far messier than he expected. John Williams plays a sly Scotland Yard inspector. [Netflix]


I went into this film not knowing what to expect. It isn't often referred to as one of Hitchcock's masterpieces, so I didn't expect anything on par with Rear Window or Vertigo. I am always glad to be proven incorrect, and I definitely was with this film. While it wasn't an in your face thriller, you knew what's going on through the whole picture, but you are still on edge because all you want is for Tony to be figured out. I wasn't sure how it was it would happen, and then came the Hitchcock genius. He always surprises me with how he brings story full circle.

I learned while reading about this film that Hitchcock came up with the idea to have Grace Kelly's wardrobe go from bright colored to dark to mimic her characters downfall. He does a great job doing so. In the beginning when she is happy and in love she is seen in a bright red gown, and at the end when she learns of her husband's betrayl, she is seen in a dark brown outfit. 


- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -


"It's love and murder at first sight!"

Cary Grant as Roger Thornhill
Eva Marie Saint as Eve Kendall
James Mason as Phillip Vandamm
Leo G. Carroll as The Professor

What if everyone around you was suddenly convinced that you were a spy? This classic from master director Alfred Hitchcock stars Cary Grant as an advertising executive who looks a little too much like someone else and is forced to go on the lam (helped along by Eva Marie Saint). Hitchcock's sure-handed comic drama pits Grant against a crop duster and lands him in a fight for his life on Mount Rushmore -- a true cliffhanger if ever there was one. [Netflix]

I knew starting out I was going to love this film. I mean it stars Cary Grant, is directed by my good friend Hitch, and promises to take you on a thrilling ride... how could you not get excited? Honestly, I knew nothing of this film when I sat down to watch it. All I knew was that it is on many must see list and the DVD cover art was pretty amazing. After seeing the picture, it is hard to put into words how much I loved this film.

One thing I found interesting is in this film and in The Birds is that the leading ladies seem to be made to look like Grace Kelly.  The style of clothing, the short blonde hair, even their acting all reminded me of Kelly. This doesn't mean I didn't enjoy Eve Marie Saints performance, because she was great, I just found it hard to not draw comparisons. Eve was great an acting with her eyes when her character needed to convey her feelings but couldn't blow her cover.

I loved the scene in the auction house where Cary Grant makes a spectacle in order to avoid being killed by the hit man. The reactions the auctioneer had to the outrageous behavior of Grant's character  were priceless. It was a clever way to deal with a sticky situation like that.

The end sequence was one of the most suspenseful scenes I've ever seen. It was the first time I got a modern feel from a classic film. The grandeur of the shots in that scene as well as the earlier scenes reminded me of today's big blockbuster films. Had me on edge to the last cliff-hanging second.


- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

THE BIRDS (1963)

"Nothing You Have Ever Witnessed 
 Before Has Prepared You for 
SuchSheer Stabbing Shock!"

Tippi Hedren - Melanie Daniels
Rod Taylor - Mitch Brenner
Jessica Tandy - Lydia Brenner
Veronica Cartwright - Cathy Brenner

Chic socialite Melanie Daniels (Tippi Hedren) enjoys a passing flirtation with an eligible attorney (Rod Taylor) in a San Francisco pet shop and, on an impulse, follows him to his hometown bearing a gift of lovebirds. But upon her arrival, the bird population runs amok. Suddenly, the townsfolk face a massive avian onslaught, with the feathered fiends inexplicably attacking people all over Bodega Bay. [Netflix]

Usually when I decide to see a film it's because I was drawn to it by a certain actor, but with this film that wasn't the case. I wasn't familiar with any of the cast (at first), and I  wasn't sure of how the story would play out, but all I needed was to know that Hitchcock was the director.

I was glad to see that Edith Head was apart of this films crew, so I was expecting some beautiful costume design. I was a little let down that Tippi's character only had two different outfits, but I was amazed at how perfect each of them was. Even though Edith only had two outfits starring in the film, she made those two count. The seemed to be ripped from the perfect wardrobes of Grace Kelly in Rear Window.

Watching the film I was in awe of the gorgeous scenery, only to find out in the special features, most of it was painted matte boards. The way Hitch was able to seamlessly combine live action with the gorgeous Painting was amazing.

The film had none stop action. You never knew when the next attack would take place and to what lengths the birds would go to get their prey. The most exciting scene was outside the school house. The character of Melanie is sitting in front of a jungle Jim and as the camera goes back and forth between her face and the jungle gym more and more birds gather. Than they get a tight close up of Tippi and hold it there until you can't stand it anymore. All you want to do is yell for her to turn around and then the camera pans back to a wide shot! The entire play area is covered in birds! All I could do was gasp! One of the best shot scenes ever!

This is the first classic era film I've seen that actually had a degree of gore. When they showed the farmers body mutilated by the birds, it was a horrific sight. The blacken eyes and bloody mess makes your skin crawl. It was at that point I became worried about the characters.

This was a great film and the ending leaves you wanting more. I heard that Hitchcock had an alternate final shot planned. He was going to have the car arrive in San Francisco only to find the Golden Gate Bridge covered in birds! That would have been awesome to see.


Thursday, November 17, 2011

Blogathon | Clark Gable For Movember

"During November each year, Movember is responsible for the sprouting of moustaches on thousands of men’s faces, in the US and around the world. With their Mo’s, these men raise vital funds and awareness for men’s health, specifically prostate cancer and other cancers that affect men." -

Bette over at Bette's Classic Movie Blog is throwing a Blogathon (Classic Moustaches For Movember) in honor of the nationwide cause to raise awareness for men's health. I had never heard of this, but apparently every year the 'Mo Bros' with their 'Mo Sistas' by their side start clean shaven and then groom, trim and wax their new growing moustaches into works of art. They then seek out sponsorship to raise funds for the cause. I thought this was a fun idea, so here is my contribution to the cause...

One of my favorite actors after Cary Grant is the great Clark Gable. During his film career he played opposite some of Hollywood's most famous leading ladies and made all of their hearts melt with his neatly groomed moustache. Women wanted to be with him and men wanted to be like him. While Clark's moustache didn't appear until a few years into his career in the 1932 film Strange Interlude, it wouldn't take long for it to become one of the most famous pieces of facial hair to ever grace the silver screen. In 1939, as Clark Gable played lead opposite Vivien Leigh in Gone With The Wind, his moustache was setting trends across the country. Below you will find pictures of Clark along side his lovely leading ladies that span his lengthy career. What a stache!

Before the images come, make sure to head on over to the Movember (US) Donation Page and learn more about this great cause.

With Joan Crawford | 1933 | Dancing Lady

With Myrna Loy | 1934 | Manhattan Melodrama

With Claudette Colbert | 1934 | It Happened One Night

With Jean Harlow | 1937 | Saratoga

Monday, November 14, 2011

Film | Mr and Mrs Smith (1941)

It has been a few months since I made my post about 'Stars To Watch', but I finally got around to seeing one of the films I talked about on that list. Carole Lombard was one of the stars I talked about and after the Carole-tennial(+3) Blogathon, I figured why not start with one of her films. When I found out this was directed by Hitchcock, it was put at the top of my Netflix Queue.


"Lombard and Montgomery Get Hitched
As They're Getting Unhitched !"

Carole Lombard as Ann Krausheimer Smith
Robert Montgomery as David Smith
Gene Raymond as Jefferson Custer
Jack Carson as Chuck Benson

No less than Alfred Hitchcock takes a turn at the helm of this decidedly romantic comedy starring Robert Montgomery and Carole Lombard as the titular couple, David and Ann Smith. After three years of highs and lows in a mercurial nuptial, the two discover they aren't truly married after all. David hesitates sealing the deal for real, which drives Ann to the arms of the straight-laced Jeff (Gene Raymond). Is a happily-ever-after not meant to be? [Netflix]

The dinner scene when David goes out with his male friend and the two 'beautiful' ladies made me laugh out loud. David was already a little uncomfortable sitting with these two ladies that weren't up to his standards, and then in walks Ann. When he sees that Ann is there with his long-time friend Jefferson, he feels the need to make her jealous rather than have her laugh with the company he is keeping. So he cleverly uses the more attractive lady to his other side to make Ann believe he is with her. He mimes words into her ear and it works until the lady's gentlemen friend sees what is going on. Poor David never had a chance.

This was Alfred Hitchcock's first and only screwball comedy. It has been said he only did it as a favor to friend Carole Lombard, but papers from RKO show that is was actually Hitchcock that pursued the project. Lombard took over directing for part of the film. When it was time for Hitch to make his cameo appearance, Carole made him do the act numerous times until she thought it was perfect.

It turns out Carole was quite the jokester. Playing on the quote Hitchcock made about "all actors being cattle", he walked on set one day to find a corral with livestock inside. There were three heifers with nameplates that read Lombard, Montgomery and Raymond.

This was my first time seeing one of Carole Lombard's films, and I must say, it makes me anxious to see more. She was very likeable and seemed very real. She was funny without trying and demanded your attention in all of her scenes. I had read prior that this was the second to last film she made before her death, so watching the film had a bitter-sweet feeling to it.