Coming To America

Homeward bound... Who can forget when Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman were the world's It couple? And their smoldering chemistry? Who can forget 1992's Far And Away, when they put on Irish brogues? I saw Far And Away on VHS with my friend, Nikki in high school, and we kinda got into it. During the last ten minutes … Continue reading Coming To America

The Talk of the Town

About a year ago I did an "Origins" post on Judy, and it's kinda nice that Amazon brought the movie to Prime. Were my first impressions correct? Yes and no. The movie alternates between scenes of Judy as a youngster and as an adult, up to about six months before she passed away. There's music, of course, … Continue reading The Talk of the Town

The Lady In the Tutti-Frutti Hat

Taking Up Room's first blogathon of 2021... Carmen Miranda's star rose very quickly in the United States, and it didn't take long for Twentieth Century Fox to play that up in a big way. The most overt example of was 1943's The Gang's All Here. The film appears to be an homage to the Good Neighbor … Continue reading The Lady In the Tutti-Frutti Hat

It’s Witchcraft

Remember 2005's Bewitched? I don't know what anyone was expecting with this Ephron flick. A remake of Bewitched, of course, but...eh. It was a bit more than that. Or a bit less, depending on how people want to look at it. Glass half-full versus glass half-empty. Anyway... Isabel (Nicole Kidman) doesn't want to be a witch … Continue reading It’s Witchcraft

Stage To Screen: A Funny Thing Happened On the Way To the Forum

Happy New Year! Hope everyone enjoyed their holidays. I did. I could have used another week of vacay, but it's all good. On to 2021.... The one and only time I saw Sondheim's A Funny Thing Happened On the Way To the Forum was in college. I tried out for it as part of my Broadway performance … Continue reading Stage To Screen: A Funny Thing Happened On the Way To the Forum

Origins: Wonder Woman 1984

I don't know about anyone else, but Wonder Woman 1984 is another movie I'm anticipating. I was also interested in delving into her history, which I've never really done before. Thing is, though, I hesitated to even post this because of studios constantly pushing back release dates during the pandemic. Or just throwing theaters under … Continue reading Origins: Wonder Woman 1984

Hit the Dance Floor

Tap, tap, tap... In 1936 Fred and Ginger were two years into their partnership, and Follow the Fleet was one of two movies they made that year. The film sports some Hollywood heavyweights and soon-to-be-heavyweights but is itself pretty lightweight. However, it's classic Fred and Ginger. Sparky chemistry, magical dance sequences, and fun. "Bake" Baker (Fred Astaire) … Continue reading Hit the Dance Floor

Five Reasons To See “White Christmas”

Few holiday movies are as iconic as 1954's White Christmas. Even those who haven't seen it all the way through have probably glimpsed it while channel-surfing. It's always somewhere. The film came about because Paramount felt it was time for another Berlin tour-de-force, and the prestigious songwriter was happy to comply. Conveniently enough, he was able … Continue reading Five Reasons To See “White Christmas”

Nine Tips For A Successful Island Christmas

Christmas is coming... We all know 1960's Swiss Family Robinson. The Robinson family sets out from Berne to New Guinea, they get chased into a storm by pirates and they get shipwrecked. They do more than make lemonade out of the lemons they've been handed, of course. MacGyver would be proud of the Robinson clan's … Continue reading Nine Tips For A Successful Island Christmas

Impressing Bette Davis

Miss Moorehead is back... One thing that can be said about Agnes Moorehead, and Bette Davis for that matter, is that in an industry that prizes youth above talent they managed to stay relevant. And they did it without seeming contrived or going under the knife, thank you very much. A flagship example of their … Continue reading Impressing Bette Davis

Down On the Farm

This year has shown us things about ourselves, positive and otherwise, and it may mean discovering depths and talents we never knew we had. With that in mind I decided to revisit 1947's The Egg and I. It's not only based on a true story of a city couple trying to start a chicken farm, … Continue reading Down On the Farm

Let’s Put On A Show

Escapism can take some funny shapes, and in 1944's Broadway Rhythm it literally does. It was meant to be the latest installment in the Broadway Melody series, but L.B. Mayer decided to change it to a vehicle for up and coming singer Ginny Sims. It was also an adaptation of a Kern and Hammerstein musical called Very Warm … Continue reading Let’s Put On A Show

Oxford Calling

The Barrymores are back, y'all... In 1936, MGM established a branch of its studio in Britain, starting out at the Denham Studios in London. In 1938 three of its biggest stars made A Yank At Oxford there: Robert Taylor, Lionel Barrymore, and Maureen O'Sullivan, supported by a lady who would became rather infamous later. Lee (Robert Taylor) … Continue reading Oxford Calling

Vive La France

Welcome back, Mr. Rains... While France was occupied during the Second World War, its soldiers, sailors, and airmen managed to deal heavy blows to the Axis with assists from the English and Americans. Like many other aspects of the war this effort was fodder for Hollywood's movie factory, and in 1944 our guest of honor … Continue reading Vive La France

Astaire’s Worst Movie

Gotta dance... Fred Astaire wasn't immune to the occasional turkey and one of them is 1940's Second Chorus. Astaire plays Danny, a trumpet player in a college band. It sounds all right on the surface, except that Astaire was forty-one at the time. At least Artie Shaw was along to make it all better. Oh, … Continue reading Astaire’s Worst Movie