Friday, September 30, 2011

Film | An Affair To Remember

I originally bought this film on DVD a few years ago and have never gotten around to watching it. As I continue writing on this blog I have come to realize how many movies I have bought and never watched. Anyways, I decided to watch this picture as apart of the Darling Deborah Blogathon. I have only seen Deborah Kerr in a few other films (Separate Tables and The King and I) but I have seen those films in so long I couldn't possibly write a post on those. I also love every movie I've ever seen with Cary Grant so how could I go wrong?


"Every precious moment of the glad...tender...
triumphant love they found -- and almost lost!"

Cary Grant - Nickie Ferrante
Deborah Kerr - Terry McKay
Richard Denning - Kenneth Bradley
Neva Patterson - Lois Clark
Cathleen Nesbitt - Grandmother Janou

Although each is already engaged to another, Nickie Ferrante (Cary Grant) and Terry McKay (Deborah Kerr) meet on an ocean liner and fall deeply in love. Tempting fate, they agree to meet at the Empire State Building in six months if they still feel the same way. But a tragic accident prevents their rendezvous, and the lovers' future takes an uncertain turn. [Netflix] 

When I sat down to watch the movie I had a pretty good idea of what the movie was about. Two people who are engaged to other people meet on a ship and fall in love (having an affair to remember) and decide to meet up six months later at the top of the Eiffel Tower. When tragedy strikes their affair is put on hold and their love for one another is put to the test. Now I was a little angry while looking at the IMDB page prior to watching it and learning what the tragedy was before hand. While it ruined the twist, it definitely didn't ruin he movie.

I thought Cary grant and Deborah Kerr carried this film superbly. Their chemistry was refreshing and their acting was on par. The scenes where they are trying to act like they didn't know each other were quite funny. In the dining room and especially when grant is circling the stairs so they can talk really had me in stitches.

My favorite part of the film actually had nothing to do with the main story. I just adored Nick's (Grant) grandmother Janou, played by Cathleen Nesbitt, that they go visit while on shore in France. Her acting was subtle but really made me feel every emotion she had during their stay. The way her face so subtly changed to show her sadness when she heard the ship's horn. I actually got a little teary eyed seeing her watch them go. This was probably one of my favorite scenes from any film I've ever seen. So much is learned about all of the characters involved and there is so much care/loved felt between all of them.

One thing I found distracting was Cary grants skin tone. I know he was always a tan guy, but I couldn't stop thinking about his skin. I thought it aged him and maybe it wouldn't have been so apparent if he hadn't been paired with the very fair skinned Kerr.

Ive written about how much I enjoy Cary Grant as an actor, but this was the first time I've watched Deborah Kerr in a film where I really noticed her acting. I found her form of acting very easy to watch. She had a very soft way of conveying her feelings on screen. She could use her eyes and expressions to show her happiness or sadness without using words. You could actually see her acting flow from being totally against falling in love to not wanting to be apart from her newly found love effortlessly, as if it were her actual feelings.

I really enjoyed this film and wish it hadn't taken me so long to see it. I liked the story so much I might go see the original and remakes.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Classic Hollywood: All Doll'd Up

After watching the film Sudden Fear (review coming soon), I decided to 'google' the film, as I usually do. It was then I came across a website full of repainted fashion dolls, made to look like some of my favorite Classic Hollywood stars. The works on this website ranged from Greta Garbo to Elizabeth Taylor. The work even extended beyond Old Hollywood featuring the likes of Cher and Bette Midler.

Joan Crawford in Sudden Fear || Notice the famous Crawford Mouth
The artist I am refering to is Joan Albuerne. He lives in the North of Spain and has combined his passions of painting, movies, and dolls to make these beautiful dolls in the likeness of some of the great stars featured on his website ( Juan started painting at the age of nine and today has many of his works in private collections around the world... even in the King of Spain's personal collection. He has also won many awards and been featured in quite a few publications. His takes dolls such as Charice, Alysa, Candi, Janay, Barbie, Midge, Kira, Lea, Kayla, Nichelle, Christie dolls and changes the features. Sometimes even modelling new noses, mouths, and eyes. His work is impeccable and extremely detailed.

Grace Kelly in Rear Window
After seeing these beautiful dolls, I looked up other custom repainted dolls and found some awesome things. It inspired me to share my finds in a little series here on Blame Mame called Classic Hollywood: All Doll'd Up. There are some stars who will get their own posts (like Elizabeth Taylor, Audrey Hepburn and Marilyn Monroe), but we will start out with a few of my random favorites...

Lana Turner in The Postman Always Rings Twice || Complete with cigarette and case
Rita Hayworth in Gilda
Cyd Charisse in Singin' In The Rain

Keep an eye out for more in the future by Juan and other artist...

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Film | Funny Girl (1968)

I first want to thank everyone who has visited the Blame Mame Blog page on Facebook. I hope to see a lot more people over there. And here we have the second post of 'Funny Girl Day'... a review of the classic film.


"People who see FUNNY GIRL are the luckiest people in the world!"

Barbra Streisand - Fanny Brice
Omar Sharif - Nick Arnstein
Kay Medford - Rose Brice
Anne Francis - Georgia James
Walter Pidgeon - Florenz Ziegfeld

Director William Wyler's classic musical tells the story of legendary Ziegfeld Follies comedienne Fanny Brice (Barbra Streisand, in an Oscar-winning role), an unconventional beauty who grew up in the Jewish slums of New York dreaming of stardom. When Brice finally becomes the toast of Broadway, the resentful reaction of her husband (Omar Sharif) threatens to destroy their marriage. [Netflix]

The Prytania Theater (the only single screen theater left in Louisiana) has a Classic Movies series that they show every Wednesday, Saturday, and Sunday. I went to see Gentlemen Prefer Blondes on the big screen a few months ago, but have been unable to see other films they were showing due to timing. I have missed out on seeing Singing In The Rain, All About Eve, Mary Poppins, among others. I did however make it to see the 1968 film Funny Girl a few weekends ago. I even dragged my in-laws and wife along for the ride.

The film starring Barbra Streisand is about the life of comedienne Fannie Brice. The story brings you from her beginnings in the Jewish community of the Lower East Side to her rise as the star of the Ziegfeld Follies. Along the way we have a love story and enough music to make your ears fall in love.

This was my first time seeing Barbra Streisand in a film that was not Meet The Fockers or Little Fockers. I have been intrigued by her ever since I seen a few of her numbers reprised on my favorite show... Glee. I now ask myself why has it taken me so long to see what all of the fuss is about. I found Barbra funny, charismatic, and one damn good singer. I must say my introduction to Barbra was a memorable one. We arrived late to the theater and the film had started a few minutes before we arrived. We walked into a dark theater and there was Barbra with her head leaned back on the seat talking about Ziegfeld was waiting for her. After seeing this, I knew I was in for a great film.
The music was top notch in this film. Every musical number was rich in tone and Barbra's voice soars in almost every scene. The dancing was fun, the costumes were gorgeous, the only thing about this film I didn't like was Omar Sharif's character Nick Arnstein. While he was definitely charming, I knew from the first time I saw his face he was no good for her.

There were so many quotes I found charming in this movie. In almost every scene Fannie Brice was saying something that I found entertaining, such as...

"You think beautiful girls are going to stay in style forever? I should say not! Any minute now they're going to be out! Finished! Then it'll be my turn!"

"I'm a bagel on a plate full of onion rolls!"

Seeing Funny Girl has me wanting to see more of Barbra's films. Not only that, I want to listen to more of her music... what a voice!

As a side note on that voice... I read that the final scene was filmed with live vocals from Barbra because of how much she disliked lip syching. Even if she was difficult to work  (being a perfectionist) for someone to deliver a scene live like that deserves to be difficult... what a talent!.

Music | Id'd Rather Be Blue [Funny Girl]

I have decided to make today 'Funny Girl Day'... in honor of one of my favorite films, the 1968 Barbra Streisand vehicle Funny Girl! First up we have my favorite song from the movie, "I'd Rather Be Blue (Over You)".

Monday, September 26, 2011

Blame Mame On Facebook

I am excited to announce that Blame Mame is now on Facebook! If you are a member of Facebook and a fan of the Blame Mame Blog, please visit the Blame Mame Facebook Page and click the 'Like' button. You will know you made it to the right place when you see Gilda inside the Facebook logo! You will get all of the latest blog updates as well as pictures, videos, audio, and classic links!

Blame Mame on Facebook

Film | Montana Belle (1952)

 First of all... thanks to everyone who visited the blog from the Fashion In Film Blogathon! I didn't expect such a great response for the Letty Lynton post and the revived interest in the Sketch To Screen: All About Eve post. I also would like to thank everyone who has started following this blog... Blame Mame now has 30 followers!

And here we have the next post in the Jane Russell Filmography Project. This time we have 1952's Montana Belle... and outlawish western with action, music, and a love triangle.

After Jane Russell's career started with the scandalous western The Outlaw, it would take many years before she could break that typecast. In her early career, she only seemed to play 'the outlaw.' This is no different in the film Montana Belle. This film was shot in late 1948 at Republic Studios, but its release was held up for 4 years by Howard Hughes.  Being displeased with the film, he bought the picture from Republic for $600,000 because he didn't want the release of the film to hinder Jane's career in anyway. He would go on to re-cut the film and add a few scenes to make it a better vehicle for Russell.
The film is a fictional story about western outlaw Belle Star, who was recently saved from a lynching by the notorious Dalton gang. While at the gang's hide out, she falls for one of the boys and plans to run away with him after their next robbery. When the law shows up to arrest Star when the boys are away, Belle believes they sent them to capture her. From then on, it is her sole mission to bring the Dalton gang down and start her own gang of thieves. All is going well until the Belle Star Gang hides out in a casino and Belle meets the sophisticated owner Tom Bradfield. He changes her mind on how life can be, and she tries to get away from the life she built for herself in order to be with Bradfield... the only problem? Her Dalton boy lover wants her for himself.

While this was not a masterpiece, it was a fun movie to watch. At a running time of 81 minutes there was enough of a story to keep you interested and some musical numbers (which were Jane Russell's idea to add) to keep the story going. While I find it hard to believe Russell as a western outlaw (especially since I see her as the classy Dorothy Shaw), she does a very good job playing hard and rough. Definitely worth seeing if you are a fan of Ms. Russell or a good ol' fashioned western flick.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Fashion | Letty Lynton

Added Sunday 09.25 || Here is my contribution to the Fashion In Film Blogathon. You can find the other entries for the event here. Also be sure to check out my other [older] post about fashion in film... Sketch To Screen: All About Eve!

One of my favorite things about Classic Hollywood are the costumes worn by all of the glamorous stars of that time. I was very excited to see the 'Fashion In Film' blogathon being hosted by Hollywood Revue and decided what I would write about that day!

I knew I wanted to highlight a single film that had a large influence on fashion, and of course, it had to star one of my favorite actors. And so came the idea of the 1932 film Letty Lynton. Did the film make a mark on the fashion world? Check! Does it star one of my favorite actors? Check! Sounded like a good plan to me.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Video | Baby, You Knock Me Out

This video clip is from 1955 satirical MGM musical It's Always Fair Weather starring two of my favorites... Gene Kelly and Cyd Charisse. I actually haven't had a chance to see this picture, I discovered this dance sequence one day while browsing YouTube and it has become a favorite one of mine to revisit every so often. There isn't anything fancy about the scene, just a lot of great dancing.

In the next week or so I will be posting an entry I wrote about 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. So please check back for my upcoming post.

Film | The French Line (1954)

I recorded this film a few years ago and had yet to watch it. With the Jane Russell Filmography Project going on, I finally sat down to check out this film from 1954.

This picture has always intrigued me because of all the 'scandals' surrounding it. It was banned by National Legion of Decency and the Production Code would not give it a seal of approval. You would think you were going to be watching an adult movie, but as with most controversial films from the Golden Era... this film is about as tame as they come.

After the major success of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes in 1953, Howard Hughes wanted his own musical picture about American girls heading for France for love. He even hired the sister of Anita Loos (author of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes), to write the screen play. The picture obviously would star Hughes' favorite star, Jane Russell and in typical Howard Hughes fashion he would use Jane Russell to stir scandal to gain publicity for the film. With a tagline like "J.R. in 3-D. It'll knock both your eyes out!", how could this picture not cause a stir in 1950's society. So what was the fuss all about? After seeing the film, I am still left with the same question, as I am sure audiences of the time did as well.

The 'Lookin' For Trouble' scene at the end of the film that was the issue, was nothing but a tongue and cheek musical number about a women wanting a man. Jane was originally supposed to wear a two piece bikini for the number, but refused to after trying on the costume. Russell was a christian woman with a family, which is probably why she is never really 'selling sex' when it is promised. She always carried herself with class and never delivered the 'trash' Howard Hughes promised the public. Even if you watch the uncut version, you are still left wondering what was the big issue? Jane does some pelvic thrusts and that's about it. While watching the film, it is obvious this number was only added to cause issues. To me, it actually doesn't flow with the film. It appears during the final fashion show where beautiful gowns for the seasons were just being shown and then we go into a musical number in a bathing suit? While definitely a fun song to listen to, the film could have done without the scene.

The film about about Mame, a Texas oil heriess, who can't stop finding oil and can not find love. The men she meets are either after her money or scared of a woman with so much money. With the help of her fashion designer friend, she assumes the identity of a model to find love. They set off on a French line headed for Paris when she falls in love with a French man, who isn't who he appears to be either. 

There are beautiful costumes, great musical numbers, and even Kim Novak in her film debut as a model... a very fun picture to watch.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Film | It Happened One Night (1934)

Taking a break from the Jane Russell Filmography Project, I sat down to watch the 1934 film It Happened One Night starring Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert. This movie has been on my 'must see' list for awhile, I was happy to finally get to watch it.

On the run from her father, socialite Ellie Andrews is on her way to be with new husband King Westley in New York. Along the way she meets out of work Peter Warne who wants to use her story to get his job back. After a few, very funny  misadventures, they come to realize they are in love with each other.

I really didn't know what to expect going in to this film, but I was very happy to find it so delightful. While it wasn't fall out of your chair funny, I found myself laughing and giggling as Ellie and Peter have to deal with no transportation and no money. The couple had great chemistry and great comedic timing.

One scene I found very funny was the hitchhiking scene. You have Clark Gable giving some great faces and gestures only to have every car pass him up and as the cars pass him up... it gets even funnier. Of course all Ellie has to do is show some leg and the first car to pass slams on the breaks.

This was only my second time seeing Claudette in a film (first time being in Let's Make It Legal) and I was impressed by her acting and presence on screen. She was very funny in the scene where the detectives come and she takes on a southern accent and when she freaks out in the hay field thinking Peter has left her. Now I feel the need to see more of her films. Of course Gable was charming and a terrific actor. It isn't hard to see why he is loved by so many people now and in his own time.
I was reading up on the film and learned that the players involved were not that enthusiastic about making this picture. It turns out many other actresses, such as Myrna Loy, turned down this role and Claudette only accepted it because they doubled her salary and promised to be finished filming in four weeks. I bet, the stars were happy to have made this film when it became the first film ever to win the Academy Award for Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Director and Best Screenplay.

Even if the stars weren't happy making the picture, I was definitely glad they did. A delightful film that has stood the test of time.

Quote Of The Week

From what I have read about Rita and other stars of the Golden Age, it was hard for many of them to find love with someone who wasn't in love with their on screen persona. Guess that shows how good the movie machine was at creating a star. You can find more post about Rita Hayworth here.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Film | The Fuzzy Pink Nightgown (1957)

 As a part of the Filmography Project, I am have been diving into the films of Jane Russell. I missed this film a few years ago when I still had cable when they had the Jane Russell day on Summer Under The Stars... I believe that was back in 2008. I was glad to see it as an Instant Play on Netflix.

The Fuzzy Pink Nightgown would be the last film Jane Russell produced with her production company, Russ-Field Productions, and after its flop at the box office would be the last film she made in Hollywood for quite a few years. The film is based on the novel of the same name by Sylvia Tate.

The film is about Laurel Stevens, a top movie actress, who is on her way to the premiere of her newest film, The Kidnapped Bride, when she is kidnapped from her front porch. Believing this to be a publicity stunt set up by her studio, she doesn't realize she is actually being kidnapped until she is hit by the masked men. They bring her to their hide out and reveal she is being held ransom. The kidnappers turn out to be nice guys who just need some money and she winds up falling for one of them.

The film was a great watch, but but it seemed to be missing something. Her original vision was for the film to be a suspense drama, while her director saw it as a Technicolor comedy. Maybe if one of them had stuck to their guns, the film would have turned out better. What we got was a watered down mash-up of their initial ideas. A black and white film with very little comedy, very little suspense, and very little drama. On top of that, there isn't even a 'fuzzy pink nightgown', but there is a blonde wig donning Jane Russell trying her best to make this an enjoyable film to watch.

If you are a fan of Ms. Russell, please check out my article about her singing career... Part 1 & Part 2! And if you want to learn more about the Filmography Project... go here.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Music | Jane Russell Sings! Part 2

As a part of the Filmography Project, I have been doing some research on Jane Russell's other talents... such as her singing. This is part 2 of the Jane Russell Sings! post, you can find the first part here. Find out more about the Filmography Project here.

After releasing her first album, Jane Russell went on to further her acting career. While working on the film Double Dynamite with Frank Sinatra, the couple recorded a track with The Modernaires for Columbia Records titled "Kisses and Tears."

In 1954, Jane , along with Connie Haines, Beryl Davis, and Della Russell, formed The Hollywood Christian Group after meeting at a church social. The fact that Jane was a devout Christian, may have come as a shock to the public at that time because of her very scandalous film career. The quartet was signed to Coral Records and released a single, which was followed by an LP named 'Make Joyful Noise Unto the Lord.' The album included orchestral arrangements by Van Alexandra and Lyn Murray. In May 1954, their single 'Do Lord' made its way to number 27 on the Billboard singles chart, selling a total of two million copies. They would follow up their success on the charts (after replacing Della Russell with Rhonda Felming) with other hit singles such as "Jacob's Ladder." During that time, Jane also cut a solo single titled "Forevermore" for Coral.

Aside from singing on stage, Jane would continue to showcase her vocal talents in her films. Gentlemen Prefer Blondes would team her up with blonde bombshell Marilyn Monroe and give Russell the biggest hit of her career. Unfortunately, none of her other films would live up the success of GPB. While she went on to appear in a few films after 1957, Jane's career as a major movie actress ended in 1957 after a number of films flopped at the box-office.

On the plus side, with the exposure of her abilities to act, sing, and dance, Jane was able to put together a very successful nightclub act. She would go on to appear in biggest clubs in Las Vegas, New York, Chicago, and other places around the world. She even had another stent on the radio performing with Bobby Troup and his quartet. The group released the singles "It Never Entered My Mind" and "You're Mine."

Now a trio (Jane, Connie Haines, and Beryl Davis), The Hollywood Christian Group would do a follow up to their successful LP that was recorded in 1957 for Capitol Record titled 'The Magic of Believing.' In later years an album titled 'Feel The Spirit' brought together all of the recordings the group did for Coral and Capitol including their single for Warner Bros. Records from 1961, "Cumana."

Original Artwork For 1959 Album

Even though she wasn't making films anymore, Jane stayed busy with her nightclub and music careers. In 1959, she would release a self-titled LP for MGM Records. For this album Jane was recorded in stereo sound and given full creative control over the whole recording process. Jane would later say “I picked the songs and the band. I knew I wanted a small group. I got Billy May to arrange and when I needed a piano player, Peggy Lee found me Joe Rotondi. I finally got to make a record the way I wanted to make it.” The jazz inspired album was full of standards arranged by Billy May, this would become Russell's personal favorite. Jane would take this album on tour, appearing in New England and New York. The album would later be re-released under the name 'Fine and Dandy' with 5 never-before-released tracks and two demo recording from 'Gentlemen Prefer Blondes' and 'Macao.'

Though best known as a silver screen bombshell, Jane Russell had a fruitful music career and went on in later years to become a stage actor. Never satisfied with the roles she was given in film, it is nice to know what Jane was able to enjoy this part of her long career because she was respected as a talent, rather than being exploited to sell seats in theaters. I have started my own collection of Jane's recordings and hope to one day have them all. You can find most of her music on iTunes and amazon.

And there you have it... Jane Russell Sings!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Music | Jane Russell Sings! Part 1

With Jane Russell being the first star to have her films explored in the Filmography Project, I have been doing some research on the other parts of her career as well. One thing I am glad to have come across is the long list of songs recorded by Jane. Now I know it isn't hard to realize that she was a singer, but I don't think many people know she had a music career, maybe it was a small one, but nonetheless she had a music career. She released a few albums and even had a single perform pretty well on the charts. This is the first of a two part post about those albums and Jane's other ventures into music...

Jane's first venture into music was in the late 1940's. She had been signed to a 7 year contract at the age of 19 by Howard Hughes, but her debut film, The Outlaw, was held up for many years by the Hays Office. When the film finally made its way onto the silver screen, it never lived up the hype setup by the publicity the many years previous. Jane Russell was a popular movie star, without any movies under her belt. She was loaned out by Hughes to make Young Widow while waiting for The Outlaw to be released, but this film did little to nothing to advance her career.
While waiting for her film career to go somewhere, Jane put together a nightclub singing act. She debuted at the Latin Quarter Club in Miami Beach, Florida. While it didn't do anything to help her movie career, she did bring in a $15,000 salary for the one week engagement. In January 1947, after losing his lead singer, Kay Kyser invited Jane to make an appearance on his College of Musical Knowledge radio show. When she was so well liked on the show a 12 week contract was written. She even went with Kyser to Columbia to record two tracks with him ['As Long As I Love' & 'Boin-n-n-ng'].

The Outlaw was finally nearing its release in 1947 when Columbia approached Jane to record her own album. The result was an 8 track album titled 'Let's Turn Out The Lights.' The album found Jane cooing suggestive bedroom ballads such as 'Do It Again' and 'Body and Soul.' On two of the tracks, 'Let's Turn Out The Lights' and 'Two Sleepy People', she was teamed up with Bob Lowery to deliver bits of dialogue where it is suggested that there are other things to do before retiring to bed.

The album was reissued with the Kyser tracks she recorded at Columbia as well as two other unreleased tracks. The unreleased tracks, 'The Gilded Lady' and 'Reckless', were from the film Montana Belle. The songs were never released when they were recorded in 1949 because Hughes delayed the film's release until 1952. Years later, Russell put down the record calling it "horrible and boring to listen to."

While I can hardly agree with her views on the album, I must say it isn't something to listen to if you are trying to do anything but relax. The torch style ballads are beautifully sung and a joy to listen to. Album highlights for me include 'A Hundred Years From Today' and 'As Long As I Live.' The album is available on the web, but if you go on iTunes, you can find the tracks as apart of a few of the Jane Russell albums they offer.

View part two of this article here.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Film | Hitchcock Double-Feature

This blog entry is going to be the 50th post here on Blame Mame! I can't believe the blog is almost 4 months old with 50 posts and almost 30 followers! In honor of the 50th post, I asked my wife what I should write about and without hesitation, she said "Hitchcock." Now up until that point we both had only seen Vertigo last week, so she really must have enjoyed it. I thought that was a great idea, since we had plans to watch Rear Window right after that conversation. So here it is... The Alfred Hitchcock Double-Feature!

After seeing Vertigo and Rear Window, I am definitely a fan of Alfred Hitchcock. Both films were some of the best I have ever seen. I later learned that they were unavailable to the public for over 30 years because Hitchcock left them to his daughter as a part of his legacy. I can't even imagine if I hadn't been able to see these now! I am really looking forward to my next ventures into Hitchcock's films... North By Northwest, To Catch A Thief, and Dial 'M' For Murder.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Reel Life | DVD Shopping

I was out on one of my usual [I do have a problem with buying too many movies] DVD purchasing adventures at Barnes and Noble, when I came across a DVD set I didn't even know existed... The Lucille Ball Film Collection. Well I did know it existed, but had forgotten about it. Back when I had seen it before, I didn't have the interest in Lucille Ball's films. After taking part in the Loving Lucy Blogathon in August, I had renewed interest in the funny lady's filmography. With all the talk of her films, I needed to see them!

I was happy to see all the films I wanted to see were in this set: The Big Street, Dance Girl Dance, Du Barry Was A Lady, and Mame. And as an added bonus, there is Critic's Choice with Bob Hope, a film I hadn't heard about. I really look forward to watching all of these. I was a little angry to find had the same set listed for $20 less than I paid in the store, but sometimes I like the satisfaction of having it with me when I get home.

Another DVD I was excited to find that I hadn't seen there before was Barbara Stanwyck's The Lady Eve. That excitement was short lived when I seen the $39.99 price tag. Why was it so much? It was apart of The Criterion Collection. I have never bought a film from this set, so I am a little confused as to why it would cost that much. There was even a copy of Charade listed at that same price and that is a film in 'public domain.'

I wish there were more places in New Orleans to find classic films that were better priced than Barnes and Noble. Every so often, I will find a random classic film at Target or Wal-Mart, but those times are too far in between. I know I can go online, but it just isn't the same as holding the movie in your hand... looking at it, then bringing it home. You have to wait a few days to a week and hope it didn't get damaged in route to your house.

Before last night I hadn't noticed ,but for those who do not browse well enough... you may spend more than you need to. I found quite a few films priced in the $20-30 range that are also available in a set (usually with 3-5 other films) for only a few dollars more. Now I am just rambling, but I just found some of the prices I seen on some films to be crazy. I noticed the Rita Hayworth Collection went UP $15 and It Happend One Night went up $6. And why? I guess that's retail for you though.

Anyways... I am done now. Thanks.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Film | The Women vs The Women

When I seen Pussy Goes Grrr's Juxtaposition blogathon, I had a great idea to talk about The Women (1939) vs The Women (2008). And so here is my contribution to the blogathon...

juxtaposition [juhk-stuh-puh-zish-uhn] noun act or instance of placing close together or side by side, especially for comparison or contrast.

1939 is known as the best year in Hollywood's history. There were more classic, timeless movies made that in that year than any other. Films like Gone With The Wind and The Wizard of Oz, but of the films made that year The Women is probably one only Classic Hollywood fans would appreciate for it greatness. We are talking about a film starring greats like Norma Shearer, Joan Crawford, Rosalind Russell, and Paulette Goddard, how could it not be on any classic film lover's favorite list?

Friday, September 9, 2011

Film | Filmgraphy Spotlight: Jane Russell

One thing I enjoy most about blogging, is blogging with a theme. I adore blogathons, but there just do not seem to be enough of them. With that said I have decided to spotlight different star's filmography and tackle viewing all that are available.

Since I have already been on a sort of Jane Russell marathon, having already watched Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (no review yet), Gentlemen Marry Brunettes (view  here), and most recently The Fuzzy Pink Nightgown (no review yet)... it only seems fit that Jane be the first star to have their filmography explored.

I will only be including major motion pictures, no TV movies and no TV series. Follow the link below to find out what film reviews are coming soon...

Film | Classic Films Around The World

This post is for The Great Movie Project's World In Film blogathon. The challenge of this blogathon was to highlight films made in each of the 7 continents. I decided (for obvious reasons) to do this blogathon with a classic film twist...

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Video | Classic Stars In J'adore Ad

I was looking on my tumblr dashboard [which is the Blame Mame 'photo gallery'] when I saw this new ad for the Dior fragrance J'adore. The reader claimed it featured Grace Kelly, Ava Gardner, Marlene Dietrich, and Marilyn Monroe, so I was intrigued. When I watched the video I was amazed.  Watch the video below and after the cut I posted some screen captures.

Film | Charade

I never thought much of this 1963 film starring Audrey Hepburn and Cary Grant. It was on my list of movies to see, but if I had known how good it was... I would have seen it much sooner! From beginning to end when you weren't amazed at how many outfits Audrey Hepburn was able to wear throughout the film, you were kept busy trying to figure out who the bad guy was. Well there were a few 'bad guys', but once you see the film you will understand what I mean.

You can expect the unexpected when they play..."Charade"

Monday, September 5, 2011

Quote of the Week

This week's 'quote of the week' comes from one of my favorite films, The Women. Be sure to check out my contribution to the Juxtaposition Blogathon on September 12th, it will be The Women ('39) vs The Women ('08).

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Actor | Kay Thompson

Even though I have only seen Kay Thompson in the 1957 film Funny Face, I have always been interested in learning more about this stylish lady with a grand voice. It wasn't until today as I watched the special feature on That's Entertainment about the people behind the camera, that I learned that Kay Thompson was so much more than an actress.

"I've discovered the secret of life. A lot of hard work, a lot of sense of humor, a lot of joy and a whole lot of tra la la."

Friday, September 2, 2011

Film | Gentlemen Marry Brunettes

A few weeks ago I started watching the 1955 film Gentlemen Marry Brunettes starring Jane Russell and Jeanne Crain on Netflix, but I was unable to finish it due to the fact that Netflix hates me. So I finally got around to finishing it last night. To be honest as I started watching the first 24 minutes or so, I wasn't sure how this picture was going to turn out. I went into it knowing the studio was trying to bank off of the success of 1953's Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, but how could it be as good without the dynamic of Jane and Marilyn?

Film | Victor Victoria

After watching Chris Colfer's character Kurt on Glee sing 'Le Jazz Hot' during the 'Duets' episode of Season 2, I instantly looked up the original song. To my surprise it was Julie Andrews in the 1982 film Victor/Victoria. I had to see this picture! A women dressed as a man pretending to be a women to find success? Sounds good enough for me! I searched for the DVD at local stores with no luck, and finally decided to add it to my Netflix queue. I usually buy any Classic Hollywood movies I want to see on DVD because it's what I collect (whether it's good or not). Once the DVD arrived, I couldn't wait to watch it!