Okay, so I’ve been watching a ginormous amount of old Hollywood films lately. More than 20, probably. So, here are some short thoughts on some of them, and some of them, I’ll do a review or two later. Maybe even video reviews.
And I’m on holiday now, so I’m going to be doing a LOT of film watching. Mostly Hindi films though. I do intend to get around to Pyaasa soon. (Yes, and I’ve finally recovered from the ending of Roman Holiday. For a while there I thought I was on the cusp of chronic depression. Felt like a leaky tap, just crying over every single little thing. )
By the way, one of my friends, geniosity, has created a Hindi film blog, Raat Akeli Hai! We’re both 14, agree to fangirl over Dev, and basically have a lot in common.
The Valley of Decision: (1945; Gregory Peck and Greer Garson) First off, I was just grabbing at this film because I wanted a nice, fun, romantic early film from Greg, to help me get over the ending of Roman Holiday. I didn’t know it had Greer Garson in it, which was definitely a bonus, since I liked her in Goodbye, Mr. Chips. (More on that below.) But it’s got plot and substance and everything one could want from a nice historical film. (1870′s, mind you, I’m not watching Greg dress up as King David and clown around. Oh, Greg. Why?)
Goodbye, Mr. Chips: (1939; Robert Donat and Greer Garson) I was very hesitant with watching this movie because, hey, sad endings. But I so badly wanted another Robert Donat film after The 39 Steps, I jumped at it when they showed it on TV. And he got an Academy Award for this, beating Clark Gable in Gone With The Wind, so that is saying something. Mr. Chips is such a nice character, and very believable too. Though… I dare you to show me a more intense moustache than Robert Donat’s. Seriously. Look at this.
Ahahah. Hah. Hah. T___T However, I am not an expert on the subject of moustaches so let’s just move on. Though I did love Robert Donat as Mr. Chips – his old British man acting was spot-on, and he was only what, 34? Though that ending. -sighfacepalm-
Mutiny On The Bounty (1935; Clark Gable and Charles Laughton) I’m not really a fan of, how d’you say, uh, sea movies. About the navy and pirates and stuff. But I watched this ’cause of Clark Gable. It’s got plenty of things going for it, such as plot, star power,
and a clean-shaven Clark Gable. LOLOLOLOL. Yeah, uh, anyway, I didn’t know that Charles Laughton here played the captain, and the barrister guy in Witness For the Prosecution. I found out later and had a giant WHAT THE- moment. Yeah, he’s a good actor though.
The Awful Truth (1937; Cary Grant and Irene Dunne) I love screwball comedies. They’re my second favorite kind of comedy, right after romantic comedies. And I also love Cary Grant, what with that awesome Transatlantic accent and everything. He does all sorts of films, serious, to romantic and light-hearted, and I daresay he does physical comedy really well too. And I’m just glad that he was there on the day that I fell sick, to entertain me and make me laugh.
My Favorite Wife (1940; Cary Grant and Irene Dunne) More screwball comedies. ‘Cause they’re just awesome. This one had me laughing right from the get-go, and that was definitely welcome after all the stressing out I had over the film that I had previously watched. I heard the censors had a fit after the I-have-two-wives thing, but then what’s not to love about this film?
Love On The Run (1936; Clark Gable and Joan Crawford) Well, I’m a sucker for romantic, light-hearted, screwball comedies. Add Clark Gable to it and I’m ready to watch anything. The film is exactly like what the title sounds like – light-hearted escapist fare with two young stars leading a spy chase in France. The chemistry between the lead couple is awesome, and my favorite scenes are when they are in the Fontainbleau Palace and are mistaken by the caretaker to be the ghosts of King Louis XIV and his wife. The minueting bit was really, really cute. And Clark Gable’s got all these awesome costumes and plays the dilemna of whether to tell Joan about his reality as a reporter very well. Franchot Tone in a supporting role also does well, although the rivalry is very, very one-sided. I kinda feel sorry for him.
The ending was also quite abrupt, like the director just went, “Aah, that’s fine, I don’t want to direct any more.” A little bit of running or resolution wouldn’t have hurt me. But oh well, it’s just me.
Knight Without Armor (1937; Robert Donat and Marlene Dietrich) God damn. I can’t remember the last time I stressed out so much over the course of one film. Probably the end bit of Nau Do Gyarah. But anyway. This is my third Robert Donat film, and I was a mess during a lot of it. Hyperventilating and going “WHAT THE-?” a lot. But not ’cause it’s bad or anything, no, no, no. It was just me. It’s about the Russian Revolution and stuff, and I learned a LOT of things from this movie.
1. Don’t be a spy in Russia. Be a spy anywhere else. But not Russia.
2. If you are a spy, don’t let people come in and die on your couch. Seriously.
3. Don’t make love in a train car. No, seriously, don’t.
4. Always carry two revolvers. They’re awesome.
ARGH THAT ENDING. It is so stressful. Look, Russian police, conduct a proper examination. Robert did not shoot that guy. He doesn’t have a gun. OK, maybe he does. But I don’t give a damn. Don’t send people off to Siberia for trivial reasons, you idiots! -ranting ranting ranting- AND NO, executing people because they don’t have papers because you bloody cornered them is not acceptable. And FOR GOD’S SAKE, STOP STRUTTING AROUND WITH THAT WHIP. YOU’RE GONNA GIVE ME A SCREAMING FIT. Oh, and Russian police? Don’t you dare lay a finger on Robert.
That is all.