Friday, April 28, 2017

A to Z Challenge-The Dreaded Letter X


Close to the end.....It is the letter X. It is always fun to see how the other people deal with this letter. Head on over to the A to Z to see what everyone chose for today.

XANADU-1980


DIRECTOR: Robert Greenwald
STARS: Olivia Newton John, Michael Beck, Gene Kelly
OSCAR NOMS: Oh God..No!! But it was up for the Razzies
OSCAR WINS: I didn't check if it won any Razzie awards
PLOT: So, the muses come down to Earth to aid  young men and their dreams. Olivia plays Terpsicore, The muse of dance, who helps a young man achieve his dream of opening up a disco rolling rink.....Yup..Ya heard it here folks
LOVE: The music is good and it's just so damm tacky
TRIVIA: Gene Kelly took this role because it was close to his house...he should have just kept on dancing by. The name of his character is the same name used in a breakthrough role of his, Covergirl (1944).

NOREEN XAVIER-


OCCUPATION: Actress, dancer
OSCAR NOMS: Nil
OSCAR WINS: Nil
ANECDOTE: I hope this is a picture of her since her name ended with an X which is why I chose her. In fact, if you ever have watched movies with background dancers or even the old variety shows, these dancers had to be in top form, learn so much, be great but never outshine the star. Too bad we don't know enough about all these people because they gave their all.


Thursday, April 27, 2017

A to Z Challenge- Letter W and TMP-TV Edition: Police shows


We are now at the letter W.....Head on over to the A to Z Challenge and find out what everyone else is talking about. My Thursday Movie Picks follows right after:) I had to still combine the 2 even though I can't quite fit them in all together.

WITNESS FOR THE PROSECUTION-1957


DIRECTOR: Billy Wilder
STARS: Charles Laughton, Marlene Dietrich, Tyrone Power, Elsa Lancester
OSCAR NOMS: Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Supporting Actress, Best Sound, Best Editing
OSCAR WINS: Nil
PLOT: A young man, arrested for the murder of an elderly, rich lady, asks a brilliant, but unhealthy barrister, to defend him. This lawyer must deal with the defendant's wife and he must deal with his nurse who knows all the hiding places for his cigars.
LOVE: The banter between Laughton and Lanchester (married in real life)
TRIVIA: Laughton and Lanchester were nominated even though they did not actively pursue the award nomination. In fact, Laughton openly rallied for Alec Guiness(For Bridge on the River Kwai).  On the other hand, Marlene (who is excellent in this by the way), thought she would be nominated for sure. She was playing in Vegas at the time and had her introduction changed to, "nominated for best actress...". She was not nominated which really upset her....the introduction had to be change obviously.

BILLY WILDER- June 22, 1906-March 27, 2002


OCCUPATION: Director, Screenwriter, Producer, Editor
OSCAR NOMS: Fortune Cookie, Some Like It Hot, Witness For the Prosecution, Sabrina, Stalag 17, Ace In The Hole, A Foreign Affair, Double Indemnity, Ball of Fire, Hold Back The Dawn, Ninotchka
OSCAR WINS: The Apartment, Sunset Blvd, Lost Weekend, Honourary Awards
ANECDOTE: He fled Nazi Germany in 1933since he was Jewish, but his mom and other members of his family still lived there. They all died in concentration camps and he rarely talked about this. He was known for his brilliance, sarcastic wit and hard hitting look at Hollywood (L.B. Mayor wanted him thrown out of town) but he could also be nasty.

Thursday Movie Picks...


I decided to just make a longer post and combined the 2:) At least the one character was arrested by the police so it connects a little:) This week it is all about TV and Police shows so let's get on with it. Check out Wandering Through The Shelves to see what the others have chosen...

1. COLUMBO-1971-2003


Peter Falk was great as the title character because the killer always thought he was dumb and so, underestimated him. Columbo also got on everyone's nerves which was just so much fun to watch because we all like doing that to someone at least once in our life time:) This show first started as part of the Mystery Movie (the other 2 were McLeod which I love, and McMillan & Wife). Finally, this show had special episodes which would air off and on until 2003. You always knew, from the beginning, who the killer was but you enjoyed how Columbo figured everything out. Columbo never cared if the person was rich or not (usually they were) because he would come in his beat up car, wearing his beat up coat and smoking a cigar. The coat was actually Peter Falk's coat..I guess to cut down on costumes..Haha.

2. BARNEY MILLER- 1974-1982


These cast of characters were just so funny from Fish to the classy Ron Harris. You would always see the comings and goings of the detectives working in that shabby office dealing with a whole bunch of characters. I still love Det Yemana, made famous by that wonderful actor, Jack Soo who died during the run of this show. I think my favourite episode is the brownie episode (Mush, Mush, Mush).

3. CASTLE-2009-2016


This is a recent TV Show that I really enjoyed. It is the very implausible story of a rich, successful mystery/crime writer who starts working with the police force to help solve crimes. The head detective is played by a quite stunning, kick ass gal with some major hang ups. Of course they are attracted to each other and play the back and forth but when they do finally get together, the show does not run dry. There are shows that are much heavier and others more fun but always entertaining especially with the other characters from the 2 police detectives who aid the main gal to the writer's mom and his daughter. It's fun and that's what I like.

One extra....

T.J. HOOKER-1982-1986


Yes....I watched this show...and yes, it is campy especially William Shatner's hair. He plays a veteran cop who decides to stop being a detective and go back to being a beat cop with a rookie partner played by the world renown star, Adrian Zmed (crickets please). The cop who knows all helps the rookie cop, with hair Shatner wishes he had, learn the ropes. Later Heather Locklear is brought in for that special touch of acting...ughh who am I kidding..T & A. It was a show that had some humour in it and, Leonard Nimoy was in an episode! Adrian Zmed left the show to pursue his acting career.....hahahaaaaaa.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

A to Z Challenge-Letter V


So today is this wonderful letter..I don't know why it's wonderful, but it is:) Head on over to the A to Z Challenge to see what other people are writing about.

VICTOR/VICTORIA-1982


DIRECTOR: Blake Edwards
STARS: Julie Andrews, James Garner, Robert Preston, Lesley Ann Warren, Alex Rocco
OSCAR NOMS: Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor, Best Supporting Actress, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Art Direction, Best Costume
OSCAR WINS: Best Score
PLOT: A young, starving singer meets a gay man who reinvents her as a gay transvestite man from a small Eastern block country. She becomes the new hit as a man pretending to be a woman but is a woman. Things get difficult when a mob boss from the States comes to see the show and finds himself falling for the man..er...woman.
LOVE: Robert Preston who I thought should have won the Oscar
TRIVIA: The dress Julie Andrews wears in her scene in the nightclub is the exact same dress Robert Preston later wears. They tied the dress up so it would fit her. When Preston wears the dress, he does the scene in one take which is why he is a bit out of breath and starts to laugh. The dress suffered a few rips.

VIVIENE CHANDLER- November 6, 1947-June 6, 2013


OCCUPATION: Actress, Photographer
OSCAR NOMS: Nil
OSCAR WINS: Nil
ANECDOTE: She played bit parts in many films and even in a rock video by Asia (The Smile Has Left Your Eyes). She changed careers and became an excellent photographer specializing in children and sold many of her works to private collectors

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

A To Z Challenge-The Letter U


This was a tough one and I was struggling to find a film I have seen with someone in the film whose name starts with the letter U. I decided to look up some people who have names with U in them and I came across this film that I feel is a stretch for 3 reasons....I can hardly remember it, I saw it when I was 18 when visiting Graz, Austria. It is a French film dubbed in German, so I could not quite get to know what they were really saying but I do recall that I was laughing. Head on over to the A to Z Challenge to see what everyone else is talking about.

Oh...I am sorry for not replying to comments like I love to do...I'm falling behind....

UP TO HIS EARS-1965


DIRECTOR: Philippe De Broca
STARS: Jean Paul Belmondo, Ursula Andress
OSCAR NOMS: Nil
OSCAR WINS: Nil
PLOT: A depressed billionaire has failed several times to end his life so he hires hitmen to take him out. Once he meets a beautiful stripper, he wants to call off the hitmen but things don't go as planned...let the chase scenes begin!
LOVE: I remember the scene on the rickety bridge..it made me laugh and be terrified at the same time...I'm really, really, really scared of heights.
TRIVIA: Jean Paul loved heights and was a prankster much to the dismay of one actor who was scared out of his wits. Except for the scenes in the Himalayas, the rest of the action takes place where you see it. Jean Paul and Ursula, that sex kitten, started seeing each other while making this film and lived together until the early 70's. I have to see this film and not in dubbed German

URSULA ANDRESS-March 19, 1936


OCCUPATION: Actress, Publicity Star, Just standing there in bikinis
OSCAR NOMS: hahahaaa
OSCAR WINS: eye roll
ANECDOTE: Even though she was raised in a strict German household, she rebelled, as one can see, and had no worries appearing nude. She is most famous in her white bikini from the James Bond film, Dr. No. She also had this wild bikini (see above) that was a shooting machine and was wonderfully parodied in the Austin Powers film. She had many affairs...big surprise.


Monday, April 24, 2017

A to Z Challenge-Letter T


The beginning of the last week! Check out the A to Z Challenge to see what the other people have talked about.

TO CATCH A THIEF-1955


DIRECTOR: Alfred Hitchcock
STARS: Cary Grant, Grace Kelly, Jessie Royce Landis
OSCAR NOMS: Best Art Direction (Color), Best Costume Design (Color)
OSCAR WINS: Best Cinematography (Color)
PLOT: A former jewelry thief is being framed, so he goes to Monaco to prove his innocence. There he meets a beautiful, icy blonde in great gowns.
LOVE: The picnic scene between Kelly and Grant
TRIVIA: Cary Grant became great friends with Grace Kelly and, for once, she did not sleep with her male co-star (the other being Jimmy Stewart). She was seeing Oleg Cassini (dress designer) at the time but this is when she met Prince Ranier so that affair soon ended. Landis, who plays Kelly's mother in the film is only 8 years older than Grant. In North by Northwest, she played his mom!

GEORGE TOMASINI- April 20, 1909-November 22, 1964


OCCUPATION: Film Editor
OSCAR NOMS: North By Northwest
OSCAR WINS: Nil
ANECDOTES: His film editing is considered so great he is studied at film schools across the land. Even though Hitchcock edited while he filmed, Tomasini was so intuitive to Hitchcock's wishes that they worked on 9 films together ( Rear Window and Psycho being 2) that it only stopped when Tomasini suffered a fatal heart attack.

OK, I know, I know...but I just love these gowns as well....These are Edith Head creations





Saturday, April 22, 2017

A To Z Challenge-Letter S


The end of another week! We are going into the home stretch but now we must talk about anything with the letter S. Head on over to the A to Z Challenge and see what everyone else is talking about for this letter. My theme is about movies and a person attached to the film. Here is mine....

SABRINA-1954

DIRECTOR: Billy Wilder
STARS: Humphrey Bogart, William Holden, Audrey Hepburn
OSCAR NOMS: Best Actress, Best Director,  Best Screenplay, Best Cinematography, Best Art Direction
OSCAR WINS: Best Costumes
PLOT: A chauffeur's daughter leaves for Europe and comes back much more refined and cultured which grabs the look of the one brother whom she always had a crush on. Seeing this could hurt business, the older brother woos her instead and now she has to decide which rich brother she truly loves.
LOVE: The wittiness of the script and direction plus the gowns! FYI-the gowns were done by Hubert De Givenchy who became the exclusive dress designer for Hepburn from then on.
TRIVIA: Edith Head won the Oscar and took it even though most people loved the gowns which Givenchy created but did not get any recognition for. Hepburn had to pay for the gowns herself since the big wigs stated it was not in the budget. By the way, she got paid $15,000 while Bogie got paid $300,000 and Holden got paid $150,000.  Also, Hepburn and Holden fell in love on the set and he wanted to marry her but when she found out he could no longer have children she broke it off.  Cut to the 1980's when I was watching the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, Carson asked Holden who was his great love (or something like that)...without hesitation, Holden said Audrey Hepburn. Oh and Bogie was a real S.O.B. on the set and hated everybody:)

SAMUEL A TAYLOR-June 13, 1912-May 26, 2000


OCCUPATION: Playwright and Screenwriter
OSCAR NOMS: Sabrina
OSCAR WINS: Nil
ANECDOTE: I had heard that he left the set of Sabrina after Billy Wilder  changed one too many things in his play but I only read it in one spot so....not completely sure. I do know he wrote the screenplay for Vertigo and Topaz and became friends with Hitchcock. He saw Hitchcock's vulnerability when they, and their spouses, were walking in the snow and Hitchcock fell. Hitchcock did not want to be seen so they circled around him and helped him up which was no easy feat.

Just 2 gowns..I couldn't resist:)




Friday, April 21, 2017

A To Z Challenge-Letter R


Nearing the end of the 3rd week and we are at the letter R. Head on over to see what other themes people have decided to write about over at the A To Z Challenge.


REBECCA-1940


DIRECTOR: Alfred Hitchcock
STARS: Laurence Olivier, Joan Fontaine, Judith Anderson, George Sanders
OSCAR NOMS: Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actress, Best Director, Best Screenplay, Best Art Direction, Best Film Editing, Best Special Effects, Best Score
OSCAR WINS: Best Picture, Best Cinematography
PLOT: Young, mousy girl is wooed and weds moody but dashing rich man who takes her to his home, Manderley and introduces her to his staff including one of the most evil characters ever, Mrs. Danvers, who was the maid for Mr. De Winter's first wife...Rebecca. The house, Mrs. Danvers and her new husband all seem possessed by his late wife.....
LOVE: That house! I love those huge fireplaces
TRIVIA: Laurence Olivier wanted his lover/wife, Vivien Leigh to play opposite him but Hitchcock didn't feel she was right for the part. This created much evil stares by Olivier onto Joan Fontaine. Joan was one of very few non brits on this film so she felt very left out which Hitchcock used to his advantage for the mousy character Fontaine played. David O Selznick was a memo nut and often sent memos to Hitchcock who promptly ignored him and even banned him from the set. Hitchcock filmed this movie in such a way that Selznick could not edit anything to his way of liking.


REGINALD DENNY- November 20, 1891-June 16, 1967


OCCUPATION: Actor, Inventor, Businessman
OSCAR NOMS: Nil
OSCAR WINS: Nil
ANECDOTE: He loved model airplanes and had a store in Hollywood selling models. He helped invent radio controlled aircraft...drones...for the U.S. Army and over 15,000 were used during WW2. I think that's pretty cool.