Sunday, September 29, 2013

You Gotta Stay Happy

You Gotta Stay Happy
Released Date: October 28, 1948
Director: H.C. Potter
Actors: James Stewart, Joan Fontaine, Eddie Albert, Roland Young, Willard Parker, Percy Kilbride, and Porter Hall

     This movie makes you... Well, happy! James Stewart shines in all his movies, even in this not so very well known film. You can see him wearing a leather jacket during You Gotta Stay Happy, and it happens to be the same jacket he wore during all of his missions in WWII. You may notice that Joan Fontaine wears a jacket throughout this movie as well, she was pregnant and couldn't show her full belly! I also enjoyed Eddie Albert as well, and he definitely stole the show while on screen.

     Dee Dee Dillwood (Joan Fontaine) is a rich brat who cannot seem to figure her life out. She is to be married, and does not want to be. Because her uncle and shrink tell her to go ahead with the marriage, she does. Completely out of love, Dee Dee and her new husband go to stay at a hotel. They have a few arguments in the lobby, and pilot Marvin Payne (James Stewart) always seems to be right in the middle of it. Marvin's copilot, Bullets Baker (Eddie Albert) is off having a drink or two, while Marvin goes to the hotel to get a good nights sleep. As Marvin is trying to get some shut eye, Dee Dee and her new husband get into another fight. This time Dee Dee wants to leave and ends up in Marvin's room for the night. Now I know this sounds dirty, but believe me when I say, this is your average black and white movie. No funny business. Dee Dee can't seem to fall asleep, so she ends up taking a sleeping pill from the pilot's luggage - which doesn't help. So then they call to the front desk so that they can send up a sleeping pill. What happens? She gets knocked out cold. In this funny sequence, you can't help but to laugh out loud. Dee Dee decides to follow Marvin and Bullets across country to get away from her husband. While James Stewart always turns on the charm, does Marvin? Will Dee Dee get out of her marriage? And if so, will Marvin be the one? 

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Vincent Price

Vincent Leonard Price Jr. 
May 27, 1911 - October 25, 1993 

 Vincent Price was born in St. Louis, Missouri and died in Los Angeles, California from lung cancer and emphysema. He was a great actor, often staring in horror movies, and most notably, in Edgar Allan Poe stories. Being from Virginia, and the fact that it is almost Halloween, I thought I would discuss Poe's most gifted actor, bringing Poe's greatest stories to life!!! Here are a list of Vincent Price and Edgar Allan Poe movies:

- The Pit and the Pendulum
- Fall of the House of Usher 
- Tales of Terror
- The Masque of the Red Death
- The Raven
- The Tomb of Ligeia 

What are some of your favorite horror movies? I love Alfred Hitchcock, Vincent Price, and of course Edgar Allan Poe, but I have also always enjoyed the great duo Abbott and Costello. Although not scary movies, they always put on a great show even with scary monsters all around.

The Petrified Forest

The Petrified Forest
Released Date: February 8, 1936
Director: Archie Mayo
Actors: Leslie Howard, Humphrey Bogart, Bette Davis, Genevieve Tobin, Dick Foran, Joe Sawyer, Porter Hall, Charley Grapewin, Paul Harvey, Eddie Acuff, Adrian Morris, Nina Campana, Slim Thompson, and John Alexander

     I have enjoyed Bette Davis my entire life and got to see this great movie staring my favorite actress just last month. The handsome Leslie Howard and mans man Humphrey Bogart also star. Both men, Howard and Bogart, were in the stage version of this film. Warner Brothers, the studio that made this movie, wanted to keep Leslie Howard in his stage role but wanted to replace Humphrey Bogart. But after Howard said that he wanted to do the movie only with Humphrey Bogart, they decided to keep Bogart in his role as well. Later in life, Humphrey Bogart named his second born child with Lauren Bacall Leslie, after Howard due to his credit in Bogart's fame. Bogart plays Duke Mantee, whose character was inspired by the famous bank robber, John Dillinger.

     Gabrielle Maple (Bette Davis) is hard at work at her father's diner/gas station. Gabrielle is dating a man that works at the diner, but does not seem too interested in him. But when Alan Squier (Leslie Howard), a poor man who has traveled a lot and has many stories enters the diner, it is love at first sight. Alan is talking about where he going and when a couple comes in with the same destination, Alan heads off. While Alan and his company are on the road, they get stopped by Duke Mantee (Humphrey Bogart) and his gang. Duke and his gang are heading straight for the diner, Alan follows them right back to Gabrielle. But what will happen with a diner full of nervous people, a waitress, and a killer? Find out the outcome by watching this great movie and enjoy watching a young Bette Davis light up the screen. Clearly to be a big star, you have Bette Davis and Humphrey Bogart's young star quality to make this movie a must see!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Vivacious Lady

Vivacious Lady
Released Date: May 10, 1938
Director: George Stevens
Actors: Ginger Rogers, James Stewart, James Ellison, Beulah Bondi, Charles Coburn, Frances Mercer, Phyllis Kennedy, Jack Carson and Franklin Pangborn

     This movie is one of the cutest movies I have ever seen. It is because James Stewart and Ginger Rogers are so adorable together, and look totally in love in this film. I have always been a huge James Stewart fan and have been really getting into Ginger Rogers lately (which I'm sure I have said a few times ;)) so if you can imagine how shocked I was that I had never seen this gem. Beulah Bondi is in this as James Stewart's mother, which happens to be five movies in total that they play mother and son. The other movies are It's a Wonderful Life, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, Of Human Hearts, and once on his TV show. This movie was made around the time that Ginger Rogers made a lot of her films with Fred Astaire, the movie has a fight scene with Ginger Rogers and she had to be extra careful of her legs which happened to be insured for $500,000. Can you imagine your legs being that expensive? That fact always tickled me, I had read that before and wondered what all happened in the fight scene, I'm glad I finally got to see it, it is quite a treat.

     Professor Peter Morgan (James Stewart) goes away to New York City to find his cousin Keith Morgan (James Ellison) and falls in love with a nightclub performer, Ms. Francey Brent (Ginger Rogers). They end up touring New York and get married the next day. The Professor has to go back to Old Sharon University where his father, also a Professor Morgan (Charles Coburn) is a teacher. Peter now has to tell his father and mother, Mrs. Morgan (Beulah Bondi). But since he has a little trouble telling his parents, he has his wife stay with his cousin until he gets the courage to tell them. Francey is very in love and wants her new husband to tell them so they can finally live together as husband and wife. Peter wants to tell his parents about his marriage at the school prom, but when Peter's fiance shows up, a little trouble and cat fight breaks out in a hilarious fight scene that puts Ginger Rogers in a whole new category. Rogers is a dancer, actress, singer and now fighter. The fight scene made me laugh out loud, but also at the cracks made during the fight. You will love it. Does Peter ever tell his parents? Will Francey end up staying married to Peter, the man that seems to be having trouble sharing the knowledge of his marriage? Find out by watching a movie you will not regret watching. One of my favorite James Stewart movies :) I honestly loved every minute of it.