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Thread: The AW Film Canon - 1940

  1. #141
    Montgomery Clift GeorgeEastman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cooper View Post
    I Love You Again (Van Dyke)

    A much more serious shortcoming is the secondary plot involving Powell and accomplice Frank McHugh's scheme to bilk citizens of the former's hometown. This arc caused Loy to be side-lined far too often
    Just finished this, and after praising Zorro for being so tight, this film does fatal mistakes. Everyone involved knows the film lives and dies with Powell/Loy, and when things gets the most interesting. They throw in a 15 minute scout session without Loy that ruins the momentum and is just eh... The film is still very much enjoyable, and I look forward to seeing more of Loy in particular, but tightness is a virtue indeed.

    "And there on top of his head were faces like she had seen only in a dream, almost too beautiful to be recognized as people at all:
    the most beautiful woman and the most beautiful man in the world, she the female version of him, and he the male version of her
    "

  2. #142
    Senior Member TaranofPrydain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Dark Poet View Post
    OMG are we actually going to get Arzner into the Top 10?
    I voted for her film.

  3. #143
    Classic Actressing Obsessed Cooper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GeorgeEastman View Post
    Just finished this, and after praising Zorro for being so tight, this film does fatal mistakes. Everyone involved knows the film lives and dies with Powell/Loy, and when things gets the most interesting. They throw in a 15 minute scout session without Loy that ruins the momentum and is just eh... The film is still very much enjoyable, and I look forward to seeing more of Loy in particular, but tightness is a virtue indeed.
    I hear ya. The scouting nonsense seemed endless.

    Might I be permitted to ever so briefly become Mr. Broken Record again by heartily recommending Love Crazy (1941)? It's a Powell-Loy picture I found far funnier than this one.

    It's available on the Russian site.
    [SIGPIC]

  4. #144
    Classic Actressing Obsessed Cooper's Avatar
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    (re-watch) The Mark of Zorro (Mamoulian)

    - In addition to the bandit Zorro, commendably imposing and sinister in attitude and appearance, Tyrone Power flawlessly portrays two other characters. There's Don Diego, the renowned swordsman in Spain and the Diego who returns to Los Angeles feigning an effete persona.

    It's a pretense that elicits considerable ridicule and scorn. Watching the second, fraudulent Don Diego become fatigued after dancing with a beautiful woman, engage in tedious sleight of hand gimmickry and sniff his ever-present lace hanky is hilarious.

    - Gale Sondergaard, I love you. She contributes so much to the picture as Inez, who yearns for beauty and culture while deeply envious of her lovely, desirable niece. With this performance, the revenge-minded, cobra-esque, betrayed wife in The Letter and her campy turn as a sleek, scheming feline in The Blue Bird, 1940 was quite the year for her.

    - Eugene Pallette's portrayal as Fray Felipe afforded him a significant, most welcome change of pace. This is a heroic man of God who's pride in and father-like affection for Don Diego is quite moving. There are traces of Pallette's usual, crotchety gasbag character but the new facets he flaunts here is indisputable proof of his range.

    - Amazing work from composer Alfred Newman, DP Arthur Miller and costume designer Travis Banton.

    - I don't know if I'll revise my ballot but this first-rate film would be worthy of doing so.
    [SIGPIC]

  5. #145
    Montgomery Clift GeorgeEastman's Avatar
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    Glad you liked it Cooper, very much second the praise for Sondergaard and will add her third film to my watchlist!

    "And there on top of his head were faces like she had seen only in a dream, almost too beautiful to be recognized as people at all:
    the most beautiful woman and the most beautiful man in the world, she the female version of him, and he the male version of her
    "

  6. #146
    Classic Actressing Obsessed Cooper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GeorgeEastman View Post
    Glad you liked it Cooper, very much second the praise for Sondergaard and will add her third film to my watchlist!
    It's a Shirley Temple film. A box office bomb and critically panned fantasy. I enjoyed it very much during childhood but haven't seen it since. Don't think it's Georgesque in the slightest but Sondergaard's a hoot!
    [SIGPIC]

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    The Mortal Storm - Seeing Till We Meet Again first makes this, as excellent as it is, seems like Borzage gearing up his balance of WWII tough lyricism on the way to his 1944 masterpiece. His visceral-bordered-on-feverish emotional register still feels unmistakably his though, as one side falls downward a corrupted, harmful ideology while another stands firm against it, escalating from dinner table talk into devastating life-and-death struggle. Haunting ending, and unforgettable final scene, indicating that even a seed of sorrowful doubt against that ideology still means the damage irrevocable when recognized too late, when one has helped foster that belief down such a destructive path.


  8. #148
    Senior Member Luc's Avatar
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    Just rewatched The Philadelphia Story.

    In many ways I think this might be the most... movie-star-esque film of all time? Here you have three all-timers from that field, making the most of their personas and using every bit of their natural charisma, to wonderful results (and, obviously, all the supporting players are great too). And they have a true delight of a screenplay to work with; there's plenty of charm, there are all the jokes, of course, but the interplay between the characters and their development are pretty layered and complex. One could even argue that the film also works perfectly as simply a character study of Tracy Lord, of the sheltering/alienation of the highly privileged.

    I think out of the comedies of the time this might be one of the headiest and densest, to the point where - and I'm being completely honest here! - I feel like some of it might go right over my head. I've been thinking about this lately, in fact; that there might be always some layers I miss from the comedies of this time because, well, humor is a bit harder to translate through languages and through ages. With a screenplay like Philadelphia Story's, especially, that feeling really came to the forefront.

    Whatever it is that I might be missing, though, I still love this.

  9. #149
    Noli Me Tangere lazarus's Avatar
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    Praying that Philadelphia can take down Rebecca and give Cukor a win.
    The Holy Trinity:
    Satyajit, Sharmila, and Soumitra

  10. #150
    Senior Member CitizenKian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lazarus View Post
    Praying that Philadelphia can take down Rebecca and give Cukor a win.
    He will in the 1939 canon.


  11. #151
    Noli Me Tangere lazarus's Avatar
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    GWTW better be credited to multiple directors and Selznick and not just that hack Fleming.
    The Holy Trinity:
    Satyajit, Sharmila, and Soumitra

  12. #152
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    Quote Originally Posted by CitizenKian View Post
    He will in the 1939 canon.

    You mean, for The Women, right ?

  13. #153
    Senior Member CitizenKian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by francesco-natale View Post
    You mean, for The Women, right ?
    I’d support that as well.

  14. #154
    I Know You're Trying AHiddenEnthu's Avatar
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    I highly recommend watching this melodrama. It's a great Ingrid Bergman pwrformance, and the movie seems way ahead of its time with the way it treats fhe main subject. It's on criterion too with a gorgeous cinematography, score (albeit sparse) and an amazing ensemble!

  15. #155
    Senior Member CitizenKian's Avatar
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    Now we're talking!

  16. #156
    Fifteen is my limit on schnitzengruben The Dark Poet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lazarus View Post
    GWTW better be credited to multiple directors and Selznick and not just that hack Fleming.
    I plan to credit all the directors + Selznick + Vivien Leigh, so don't worry

  17. #157
    Montgomery Clift GeorgeEastman's Avatar
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    Victor Fleming >>> most of the french hacks u push down our throats.

    "And there on top of his head were faces like she had seen only in a dream, almost too beautiful to be recognized as people at all:
    the most beautiful woman and the most beautiful man in the world, she the female version of him, and he the male version of her
    "

  18. #158
    Classic Actressing Obsessed Cooper's Avatar
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    As tempted as I am to post my nominees for the main categories in @McTeague's marvelous 1940 thread, I have 9 nominees for Lead Actress and 10 for every other thespian category. I can't bear to give anyone the boot.

    It was relatively painless to pare my contenders for 1938 down to 5 in every category but that year, while good, isn't the treasure trove of '40.

    Keep in mind I've yet to watch the British Gaslight. After seeing Anton Walbrook in both The Red Shoes and especially TLADO Col.Blimp, I'm more than aware of his considerable talent. An 11th Lead Actor nominee is the last thing I need.
    [SIGPIC]

  19. #159
    Montgomery Clift GeorgeEastman's Avatar
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    All my focus is on the World Cup but will try to squeeze in 1-2 films before deadline…

    "And there on top of his head were faces like she had seen only in a dream, almost too beautiful to be recognized as people at all:
    the most beautiful woman and the most beautiful man in the world, she the female version of him, and he the male version of her
    "

  20. #160
    Classic Actressing Obsessed Cooper's Avatar
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    Gaslight (Thorold Dickinson)

    - I'm curious. In Cukor's adaptation, was Boyer a Bible thumper who required one or more of the maids to kiss the holy book to prove their testimony re the missing brooch was truthful?

    When Anton Walbrook did so in this film I wanted to deck the diabolical but undeniably debonair douchebag. What a performance! Not just in that scene but the entire enchilada. Hell, I want to be Walbrook in my next life! Minus his character's many misdeeds, mind you. Just a charismatic, easy on the eyes, sophisticated rogue.

    - The scene in which Paul (Walbrook) flirted with and kissed maid Nancy (Cathleen Cordell, scrumptiously outspoken and bold as brass) was extremely sexy.

    - I wasn't prepared to be impressed with Diana Wynyard but I found her fragility and subtlety better suited to the role of victim plagued by warped and wicked mind flucks. The understated approach of Wynyard was particularly appreciated and effective when Bella tore a strip off of hubby at the end. When that famous scene was tackled in the Cukor, I found it overdone both in the writing and acting.

    - To think I was skeptical this first cinematic go-around would come up short from a direction (Cukor was one of the best!) and production value standpoint. Not so! Far from it, in fact. This adaptation is leaner, more sinister, just as atmospheric and agreeably claustrophobic.

    - Dare I claim the opening scenes pertaining to Alice Barlow are more disturbing, better directed, scored and edited than anything in the Cukor? I truly believe that.

    - As with The Mark of Zorro, this picture is eminently worthy of a ballot revision.
    Last edited by Cooper; 11-25-2022 at 11:50 AM.
    [SIGPIC]

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