Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Llillian was a Lady!!!

I am loving this gal! More posts to come about Lillian Roth, but I just couldn't resist posting this video after I found it on YouTube!!!

Monday, June 21, 2010

The First Men of Technicolor!

Everyone has their favorite actors whether they be in black and white or in blazing technicolor. Some guys simply look better in black and white... Humphrey Bogart, William Powell... It just adds to their charm, (admit it... Powell looks so much more sophisticated in b/w!) The same goes for guys who thrive in color. I picked the top 3 guys who look particularly good in TC! (Requirements for looking good in TC? A Tan Obviously!)

Here we go... Confessions' First Ever Men of Technicolor!

1. William Holden

(who actually looks great in ANY color if you ask me) is someone whom I think particularly thrives in rainbow! I chose a picture from his film with Kim Novak, Picnic! I mean... look at that movie poster! Holden looks so beef-cakey! The whole film is a bit steamy. Holden also looks very nice in Paris When It Sizzles!

2. James Garner

This guy was so funny and new how to pull off the glory of color. His films with Doris Day are among my favorites. Move Over Darling is hysterical. When he is watching the muscular man jump on the trampoline in nothing but a speedo... Jim's face is priceless!

3. Paul Newman
His big baby blues would have been overlooked had he not been put in color. I chose a pic from The Long Hot Summer... I don't think I really need to explain my reasoning... Kinda obvious! I don't think anything else needs to be said...

There are the top three in my book! So... who do you think is the best looking man in technicolor??

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Silent Movie 101

In today's culture we are constantly bombarded by noise. Wether it be self inflicted (I am notorious for carrying my iPod everywhere!) to the everyday sounds of the street (or the annoying obnoxious car next to you at the stop light who wants to share their bass beats with the world)

Silents are the opposite of media today and therefore are sometimes harder to understand. You can't just sit and watch a silent movie the way you do any other kind of film. You have to adjust not only your way of watching, but you also have to modify your expectations. For example, you wouldn't read shakespeare the same way you read Jane Austen. You have to adjust to the author. The same goes for watching a silent movie as opposed to a talkie.

So... I have compiled a few tricks to preparing a silent movie newbie.

Above: Stunning Clara Bow!

1. Prepare Yourself: Realize that films before sound technology look and feel differently than early talkies. They are almost a completly different medium all together. The film may have different cuts, close ups and might use other artistic devices to help tell the story. There is even more camera movement in silents as opposed to early talkies as the cameras weren't connected to sound equipment.

2. Silent Acting Style: Actors in silent movies had different techniques than what many audiences today expect. Silents are often more melodramatic and have much more exaggerated highs and lows. Actors had to rely on physical and facial expression to emote feelings rather than rely on their voice and dialogue. The acting might come off looking fake, but it absolutly isn't. Some actors, in my opinion, have actually lost that special character physicality and rely too much on words in later talkies. Garbo was made famous because she knew how to show such a wide range of emotion from just a look in her eye. So... when you watch a silent film, don't judge the acting too harshly, simply accept it for what it was.

3. Choose Carefully: Don't just watch any silent movie in the beginning. Choose films that you have a vested interest in watching. This will give you a reason to push forward even if you are feeling a bit skittish about watching silent movies. For example, watch a Valentino! Everyone knows who he was. Women committed suicide after his pre-mature death because they were so distraught! There had to have been something special about that guy, right?! Watch one of his films just to see what all the fuss was about. Girls in the 20s knew how to have a good time! Watch a Clara Bow or Colleen Moore film and see just how much fun a flapper really had! Choosing really interesting silent movies not only gets your feet wet, but once you have those under your belt, the heavier silents don't feel like such a big deal!

4. Stay Open Minded: Silent films truly are a very specific kind of fim medium. They were unlike anything that had ever been seen before. There were masterpieces, like the controversial ones made by D.W. Griffith, and small purely entertaining ones, like those made by Harold Lloyd. The Trick is to keep your self open to new experiences. Don't judge the film before you watch it. Be willing to explore silent era films and look at it as an adventure. Once you build up your silent movie muscle, who knows, you might feel like you could even take on a German Expressionist Silent! (Dr. Calligari, Anyone?)

Anyhow, I encourage you to stretch your film boundaries and try something new! Watch a silent movie! I have posted a few posters of my favorite titles (My Best Girl, Wings and Beyond the Rocks) All three are wonderful. Coincidentally... anything with Harold Lloyd is also a winner in my book... He was not only funny... but adorable to boot! In fact, I will end this post with a little Lloyd Love!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

5 Favorite Actors

I have already confessed my favorite actresses, but now it's time for the other side of the coin... THE MEN
5. James Stewart
I love Jimmy when he plays drunk! So when I saw this picture... I fell in love! In the Philadelphia Story, my favorite scene is the one where Jimmy goes over to Cary Grant's mansion totally hammered. He is adorable, talkatvie and plays that whole movie to perfection. Everything from his lanky frame to his very distinctive way of speaking... James Stewart is a must!
4. William Powell
This guy only feeds my adoration of older men. Bill oozes charm and sophistication. I like his quick wit and confidence. He played both comedy and drama with such ease. His films with Myrna Loy are so wonderful because they paint a picture of married life that is both entertaining and full of acceptance. He could deliver a sarcastic line like no one else!

3. Humphrey Bogart
I like to think of Bogie as my first love! He was the first classic movie actor that caught my attention and thus plunged me head first into the wonderful pool of classic cinema. My tastes have grown and changed, but I will never forget Bogie dancing on the dark tennis court with Audrey Hepburn in Sabrina. I was 12 and in love!

2. Cary Grant
I would have gladly had been called Mrs. Leech, if it meant getting to spend every day with this man! Cary never gets old, and he has so many films to choose from... A movie for every occasion. I especially love his facial expressions in Arsenic and Old Lace, his swagger in Gunga Din... and nobody ever wore a fuzzy woman's robe like Cary in Bringing Up Baby!

1. Robert Montgomery
If you couldn't guess my favorite actor... then you obviously havn't seen my blog. Bob is amazing. I am constantly finding new movies that make me fall for this guy all over again! The way he played arrogance and playboy chic is wonderful to watch. He seems like he would have been a wonderful guy to meet, funny, a gentleman. If you havn't seen much of this guy... Please, please, do! Catch him in Night Must Fall or Untamed!
There it is folks... hope you liked the pictures!

Friday, June 11, 2010

The Addicts Remedy!

It always seems to amaze me how films are my answer no matter what life might throw my way. There is always a movie to fit my mood and console my feelings. I had a really rough day at work earlier this week. I came home and collapsed wondering what it was all for. I am typically a very content person. It takes a lot to throw me one way or the other, and cuddling those feelings always tend to make me more exhausted than if I just toss them aside.

However, there was no escaping them this week and by thursday I wanted to crawl into the fetal position and wine like a baby! Instead, (like the addict that I am) I put in the movie The Gay Divorcee with Astaire and Rogers. Fred and Ginger movies are formulaic and predictable... and that is exactly what I like about them! I don't have to wonder about the ending or pay close attention to the plot. I can just relax and sink into the comfortable cloud.

It was like a wonderful security blanket. (Plus I adore the scene where Ginger gets her dress caught in the travel trunk and graceful Fred rips it trying to get it out) Edward Everett Horton makes me laugh every time in every thing he does, and I think he is one of the greatest character actors.

So... Instead of laying on a couch pouring out my troubles to a shrink, I cuddled on my lumpy sofa and let my problems float away on the dance floor with Fred and Ginger.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Robert Montgomery Tribute

This video highlights ALL the many reasons I LOVE Robert Montgomery!!!