The Old College Try

Hello, Mr. Lawford... One of the quirks of the studio era was that very often actors were conscripted into parts. Unless a performer had a lot of clout with the public, they pretty much had to take whatever the studio threw at them. Even then the word, "suspension" got bandied around a lot, but that's … Continue reading The Old College Try

For Your Entertainment

Our state fair is a great state fair. Don't miss it, don't even be late. It's dollars to donuts that our state fair is the best state fair in our state... 1945 was a weary year, but with the end of the war in August everyone was looking ahead to happier times and simple fun. … Continue reading For Your Entertainment

Six Reasons To See “Meet Me In St. Louis”

In 1944 Americans and everyone around the world were weary of war. There was a desire for simpler, happier times, when nothing very big or exciting happened. Hollywood fed into this with movies such as Meet Me In St. Louis, a gentle story about the Smith family as they wait for the Louisiana Purchase Exposition, or th … Continue reading Six Reasons To See “Meet Me In St. Louis”

Come On In, the Water’s Fine

Swimmers, take your marks... Esther Williams never set out to be a movie star. She was a champion swimmer who dreamed of competing in the Olympics. When the 1940 games were cancelled, she got a job working as a floor model at I. Magnin's Los Angeles store, and then landed a gig with Billy Rose's … Continue reading Come On In, the Water’s Fine

Hardboiled Lucy

Hello, friends. I'm your Vitameativiggivat Girl... The name, Lucille Ball, is synonymous with dramatic film noir...oh, wait, no, it isn't. Duh. 😉 Lucille Ball was a comedienne in the best sense, but like most up-and-coming actors, she did her share of roles outside of what she's now famous for. Ergo, Lucille Ball made some dramatic … Continue reading Hardboiled Lucy

Crooked But Never Common

Good to see you, Miss Barbara... I have kind of a love-argh thing with Preston Sturges. I know he's revered among film buffs, but sometimes he bugs me. Not always, though. Sullivan's Travels excellently captures a time when men rode the rails to wherever the jobs were. Hail the Conquering Hero is a rollicking tale of … Continue reading Crooked But Never Common

Oh Me, Oh Miami

Who else misses traveling? Walking around a public place without a mask? Eating in a restaurant? Large crowds of peaceful people? Good sense? Sigh. Yeah, we're not going to think about that too much. Actually, we're gonna go to Miami with Betty Grable in the 1941 film, Moon Over Miami. A colorful, light-as-air film, it … Continue reading Oh Me, Oh Miami

Ichabod and Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride

*Sound of book opening...* Disney certainly used to love the classics. One of the best of their old-school features in my opinion is 1949's The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad, which combines not one, but two classics: Kenneth Grahame's novel, The Wind In the Willows and Washington Irving's short story, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. The film … Continue reading Ichabod and Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride

A Tartu By Any Other Name

Hello again, Mr. Donat... I was going to review The Magic Box for Maddy's 'thon, but Amazon un-Primed it, so it's getting saved for later. Plan B was 1943's The Adventures of Tartu, an intriguing though very rough-around-the-edges tale of espionage and near-romance. I had no idea what to expect going in, but I figured I'd give Tartu a … Continue reading A Tartu By Any Other Name

Directed By Arch Oboler

I'm a big Arch Oboler fan. If you've been hanging around my blog for any length of time, you probably know this pretty well. Besides his prolific radio career, Oboler occasionally dipped his assertive big toe into screenwriting and directing, such as in the 1945 thriller, Bewitched. Put it this way: You know how we've all been … Continue reading Directed By Arch Oboler

Ziegfeld-less Follies

Mr. Ziegfeld, I presume... For someone who was the pinnacle of Broadway success, Florenz Ziegfeld didn't actually appear onscreen all that much as an actual character. Maybe once or twice, but that was about it. Oftentimes he was just an offscreen presence and his show was aspriational for many hopefuls. Other than that, he was … Continue reading Ziegfeld-less Follies

Not the Conventional Type

Mr. Price is back... Vincent Price might have been a horror king, but there was so much more to him. In fact, before horror was Price's primary acting output, he was known for his suave gentlemen characters of both the sympathetic and not-so-sympathetic persuasions. One of the most interesting, and one of Price's personal favorites … Continue reading Not the Conventional Type

Greer Meets Oscar

Why hello, Miss Greer... Greer Garson didn't set out to be an actress, although she wanted to. She trained to be a teacher at the University of London, but then started working in advertising in London, with a brief stint at Encyclopedia Britannica. On the side she appeared in community theater, and her talent was … Continue reading Greer Meets Oscar

Doris Takes A Cruise

Glad to see you, Miss Doris... Sometimes ya just gotta get away. It's not exactly doable these days, but the urge is real. We'll get there, folks. Someday we'll be able to move around freely again. It may take a while, but we'll get there. Until then, we do what we can, and last night … Continue reading Doris Takes A Cruise

Back To MGM

Mr. Keaton is back... Buster Keaton did have a career of sorts in sound films. Well, he tried, anyway. From 1933 onwards Keaton's life was turbulent. He was fired from MGM in 1933, his marriage collapsed, and Keaton struggled with alcohol abuse. IMDb claims there was a period of time when the public hated him … Continue reading Back To MGM