Tuesday, May 31

REVIEW: Love & Friendship

Directed by Whit Stillman
2016 Comedy Drama
1 hour 32 minutes
From Roadside Attractions

Kate Beckinsale
Xavier Samuel
Morfydd Clark
Tom Bennett
Jemma Redgrave
James Fleet
Chloe Sevigny
Stephen Fry

Friday, May 27

REVIEW: A Bigger Splash

Directed by Luca Guadagnino
2016 Drama
2 hours 5 minutes
From Fox Searchlight
and Studio Canal

Tilda Swinton
Ralph Fiennes
Matthias Schoenaerts
Dakota Johnson
Corrado Guzzanti
Aurore Clémente
Lily McMenamy

Tuesday, May 24

The Directors: Vincent Sherman

He fought the designation woman's director but as I see it that's exactly what he was.  Why the resistance?  What's wrong with being a rather acclaimed director of movies featuring top actresses especially when most everything turned out so well? The 40s was famously a decade for women's films and there was Vincent Sherman right at the center of things, particularly at
his home studio, Warner Bros.

Friday, May 20

Claire Trevor

In her heyday she personified the tough blonde.  She was usually on the wrong side of the law and in a goodly number of her films she could throw a curveball that nobody saw coming.  In film noir, her treachery made tough guys go limp and in westerns her saloon hostesses were wanton floozies who sometimes killed. Of course she got her comeuppance in film after film.  She gazed upon men with a look that said you're too dumb to contemplate. She was a force of nature that was to be reckoned with.

Tuesday, May 17

REVIEW: The Meddler

Directed by Lorene Scafaria
2016 Comedy-Drama
1 hour, 40 minutes
From Sony Pictures Classics

Susan Sarandon
Rose Byrne
J. K. Simmons
Michael McKean
Cecily Strong
Jerrod Carmichael
Jason Ritter

Friday, May 13

REVIEW: Money Monster

Directed by Jodie Foster
2016 Drama
1 hour 38 minutes
From Tristar Pictures

George Clooney
Julia Roberts
Jack O'Connell
Caitriona Balfe
Dominic West
Giancarlo Esposito
Christopher Denham
Emily Meade

Tuesday, May 10

Paulette Goddard

She was thisclose to grabbing the most sought-after female part in the history of American movies, Scarlett O'Hara in Gone With the Wind. Scores of unknowns were given tests and a number of name actresses were not. A few famous actresses who got tested were Joan Bennett, Tallulah Bankhead, Jean Arthur, Lana Turner and someone I thought who would have been excellent, Susan Hayward. Oddly, she was considered too young. Paulette Goddard would also have been exquisite in the role. She was fiery, wilful, a glorious-looking creature, and like Scarlett, she longed to be rich. She was the most tested of any actress... nine times.  The part was almost in the bag when Vivien Leigh showed up on the set of the burning of Atlanta.  

Friday, May 6

Joel McCrea

When I first saw his films in the 1950s, he was a cowboy star.  I saw him at many a Saturday matinee in Saddle Tramp, Frenchie, Cattle Drive, Black Horse Canyon, Wichita, Fort Massacre and many others.  I thought then and do so now that he was one of Hollywood's great western heroes.  And a hero he wanted to be.  I am not aware that he ever played a villain.  It was years before I realized he had been urbanized in many a movie in the 1930s and certainly came into his own in the 1940s as a romantic and often light comedy lead in films helmed by some of filmland's greatest directors.

Tuesday, May 3

Good 40s Films: Till the End of Time

1946 Romance Drama
From RKO Pictures
Directed by Edward Dmytryk

Dorothy McGuire
Guy Madison
Robert Mitchum
Bill Williams
Tom Tully
Jean Porter
Ruth Nelson
Selena Royle
Johnny Sands