Tuesday, October 18, 2016

A Second Sunshine Blogger Award!

Just when I thought I couldn't get any luckier, Carol from The Old Hollywood Garden nominated me for my second Sunshine Blogger Award! Thank you, Carol! It was very sweet of you!

Once again, the rules are this:
- Answer the 11 questions posed by the blog that nominated you.
- Nominate 11 other blogs.
- Ask 11 questions of my own for my nominees to answer.

Friday, October 14, 2016

How to be a World-Class Detective, Courtesy of Inspector Clouseau

Watching Humphrey Bogart and Dick Powell, you realize that being a detective looks hard. You have to constantly smoke, you need to be able to brood but still crack jokes, you probably need to be able to throw a punch, and you have to be witty all the time. Sounds exhausting, no? Well, luckily, the movies have given us Inspector Jacques Clouseau, a man who knows how to make detecting look as easy as pie and as fun as eating said pie. Follow his lead and you're sure to be on your way to becoming one of the greatest detectives the free world has ever seen!

Do whatever you can to follow a lead.
Do you need to go to a nudist colony to check out what your suspect is up to? Take off everything and do it! Need to impersonate a dentist to infiltrate the villain's lair? Go for it! Nothing is too crazy if it means solving your case.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

To the Women of Classic Hollywood.

I'm at a loss as to how to begin this letter. I have a million things to say, trust me, but organizing my thoughts is difficult when it comes to confessing my adoration for the people I call my heroes. And trust me, you gals are my heroes. I've always been proud to be a woman, but watching you on the screen consistently makes me hold my head up a little higher. We have a camaraderie, despite coming from different places, cultures, and time periods, and there has never been a time when I felt disconnected from you. Can I relate to you snuggling with blindingly handsome leading men? No. Can I recall a moment where I was dressed in Adrian, Irene, or Givenchy creations, looking stunning with my Bud Westmore-applied makeup and Sydney Guilaroff hairstyle? Absolutely not. But can I giggle when you make a funny face at that leading man? Can I do the most horrific sobbing when the plot deals you an undeserved hand? Can I cheer when you finish a complicated dance or complete a beautiful song? Definitely.

I've been very lucky because all of my life, I've been surrounded by the strongest and most amazing women imaginable. I've never been lacking in that department, and when I happened upon classic Hollywood, things only got better. I don't think I could ever picture myself as an actress, with the relentless publicity and premieres and working under hot lights and the media's constant obsession with appearances. That's not why I try to emulate you ladies. I try to follow in your footsteps because you were shrewd, ambitious, hardworking, warm, utterly wonderful, and so many more adjectives, all in your own ways. Things are about to get real sappy here...

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Spending September with Gene Wilder.

When I found out Gene Wilder passed away a month ago, I was thrown for a loop. Although it makes absolutely no sense, I had always assumed he would be around. A world without Gene Wilder? That's insane -- but it's what we have now, and because I'm a sentimental fool, I've been trying to fill my life with as much Wilder as I could. Reading all of the dedications to him made me realize that I had only seen a small portion of his filmography, the usual suspects if you will: Bonnie and ClydeWilly Wonka..., and his three with Mel Brooks. The only outlier was Haunted Honeymoon, a flick I had checked out of my local library years ago when I had finished Wilder's autobiography and was curious to see what he and Gilda Radner were like together. Practically all of my September has been devoted to Gene's films and the big takeaway is this: I love Mr. Wilder more than ever. Below are short reviews of all of the movies I watched, plus where I found them if you want to host your own Gene marathon (which I highly recommend).

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

The Sunshine Blogger Award.

Well, bust my buttons! I just got another award! One day after getting the One Lovely Blog Award from one lovely Simoa, the wonderful Virginie over at The Wonderful World of Cinema (I'm so clever) nominated me for the Sunshine Blogger Award. Thank you, Virginie! You're much too generous!

The Sunshine Blogger Award is pretty similar to the Liebster. The rules are:
- Answer the 11 questions posed by the blog that nominated you.
- Nominate 11 other blogs.
- Ask 11 questions of my own for my nominees to answer.

Monday, October 3, 2016

The One Lovely Blog Award.

Darling Simoa from Champagne for Lunch has nominated me for the One Lovely Blog Award! Thank you to Simoa for giving me my first one of these! And to my readers, please go check out her blog. It's pretty wonderful.

The rules for this award are as follows:
1. Write a blog post accepting your nomination.
2. Show the blogger who nominated you how much you love them by thanking them in the post and linking to their blog.
3. Tell us seven things about yourself.
4. Nominate other blogs that you love.
5. Let the bloggers you’ve nominated know about they’ve received an award.
6. Post the rules again to let those bloggers know how it works.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Rock Hudson in Pillow Talk (1959) and Lover Come Back (1961)

As much as I wanted to be scholarly while writing this piece, I soon discovered that it was pretty hard to do, strictly on a personal level. You see, talking about Rock Hudson is something I love to do, but it can be difficult to leave his personal life out of the discussion. Because I adore Hudson, I'm apt to look at him as a tragic figure, a man who wasn't able to completely live as himself and died of a horrific disease. People often like to look at his films through the lens of his homosexuality, which is perfectly fine and a worthy thing to do, but it also seems to leave something out: Rock Hudson, the actor. Can we separate Rock from his closeted image and just examine him as an actor? I think I owe it to him to try. I can't believe that his sexuality is all that we have to define him.

To me, Hudson is irresistible, and nowhere is that more apparent than in his comedies, particularly those with best friend Doris Day. Known primarily for dramas such as Giant and his work with Douglas Sirk, Hudson's performance in Pillow Talk came as a revelation. Doris and Rock's chemistry is legendary and their performances wouldn't be the same without each other there to support and build up one another. Called "the Fred Astaire of comedy" by James Garner, Day was an expert comedienne by 1959, making her a worthy partner to challenge Hudson and bring out his innately wonderful comedic chops.

"Her sense of timing, her instincts -- I just kept my eyes open and copied her," Rock said. "Doris...was an Actor's Studio all by herself. When she cried, she cried funny...and when she laughed, her laughter came boiling up from her kneecaps." When asked what made a good screen team, he stated "First of all, the two people have to truly like each other, as Doris and I did, for that shines through. Then, too, both parties have to be strong personalities -- very important to comedy -- so that there's a tug-of-war over who's going to put it over on the other, who's going to get the last word, a fencing match between two adroit opponents of the opposite sex who in the end are going to fall into bed together."