barbara stanwyck

Barbara Stanwyck (1907-90).

August 27, 2017 // 2 Comments

  BARBARA STANWYCK                        Barbara Stanwyck was one of those actresses whose performances ranged from the sublime to the ridiculous. From brilliant to lousy. Admittedly, most performers have roles they are extremely proud of and others that make them cringe, but Stanwyck was a bit different in that her best ever performance (in my opinion) and her worst ever [...]

A couple of film noirs.

February 4, 2017 // 0 Comments

  DOUBLE INDEMNITY (1944)                    I suppose most fans of old movies have their personal favourite film noir. Mine is without doubt Double Indemnity (1944), which surprises even me because I have never been overly keen on any of the three stars – Barbara Stanwyck, Fred MacMurray and Edward G. Robinson. Not in other films anyway, but in this picture they combine [...]

Did you know?

November 14, 2016 // 0 Comments

  Director Dorothy Arzner & Crawford ‘I like to think that every director I’ve worked with has fallen a little in love with me’, Joan Crawford once confided in an interview none too modestly. ‘I know Dorothy Arzner did’. No surprises there. Given her well-documented sexual orientation Dorothy may well have fallen in love with many of her leading ladies over the years. When it [...]

PAST OSCAR WINNERS – Some observations – PT 2.

October 1, 2016 // 2 Comments

  1942                Mrs. Miniver – Best Picture   Well, World War Two was in full swing and America was now in it, so a war picture (or at least a flag-waver) was bound to win Best Picture. And one did. There were four of these nominated: Mrs. Miniver, Wake Island and The 49th Parallel were about the current conflict, and Yankee Doodle Dandy provided the flag-waving. I [...]

Four memorable lady movie villains.

July 23, 2016 // 2 Comments

  The history of movies is literally riddled with iconic male villains, but not so many women have been fortunate enough to sink their teeth into a genuinely meaty, nasty role. One of the first (and best) appeared in Hitchcock’s 1940 classic Rebecca. Dame Judith Anderson positively oozed malevolence as Mrs. Danvers, although she did receive a little help from the director. Hitch, with his [...]

William Holden – His Life and his Loves

January 23, 2016 // 0 Comments

      Holden in Escape From Fort Bravo (1953) William Holden featured in a lot of very good movies during his career. Women adored him, even men grudgingly conceded that he was both rugged and charming, certainly no milk sop. Unfortunately, he was also an alcoholic, from his teens until the day he died. He was gifted with talent, looks, charm and charisma. He was also strong, [...]

Robert Wagner – matinee idol of the fifties.

January 19, 2016 // 2 Comments

  RJ & Natalie, marriage #1 ‘RJ’, as Robert Wagner is known to most of his friends, was always destined to end up acting. As a boy he attended schools and Military Colleges with the offspring of movie stars and other celebrities. These included Charlie Chaplin’s son Sydney, Irving Thalberg Junior, Edgar Rice Burroughs’ son, Fred Astaire’s step-son, and others. His first [...]

Gay Hollywood in the studio days.

December 16, 2015 // 0 Comments

  I read recently that ‘gay-gossip is the newest and most clever form of homophobia’. Nice try, but I’m not buying it.  I am neither homosexual nor homophobic, but I am interested in subterfuge and in exposing old-time movie studios that made an art form out of gulling the public. For fifty or so years their publicity machines churned out phony, sanitized images of their stars and [...]

Stolen Oscars? Pt. 3

September 24, 2015 // 10 Comments

  Part 3 of ‘Stolen Oscars?’ looks at some of the individual Academy Award winners who, for want of a better word, purloined their statuettes. I shall start with the Best Actor category. 1930/1             Lionel Barrymore for A Free Soul I haven’t actually seen any of the other nominated performances for this year, but if this was supposed to be the best of them, then I [...]

Stanwyck & Taylor – a Lavender Marriage?

July 6, 2015 // 25 Comments

When it came to questions about her sexuality, Barbara Stanwyck was the old studio days’ equivalent of today’s Tom Cruise. Any mention of her sexual preferences would immediately bring forth veiled threats of litigation should the subject be pursued. Cruise does the same thing today. Mention his name in connection with homosexuality or bisexuality and he will threaten to sue. I recently read [...]
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