frank sinatra

The loves in the life of Marilyn Monroe Pt 4.

April 16, 2016 // 5 Comments

  Before moving on to 1953 it is worth taking the time to deal with the name Robert Slatzer. Several biographies about Marilyn Monroe speak of him not only seducing her in 1952, but of marrying her as well. They even give a date, (October 3), for their wedding day down in old Mexico, but it is all hogwash. In fact, none of her circle had ever heard of the man until 1974 when he released his [...]

Frank Sinatra and the Mob.

April 6, 2016 // 6 Comments

  It would most likely surprise fans of Frank Sinatra to learn that at his birth in Hoboken, New Jersey in 1915 he weighed an enormous 13.5 lbs! He would, however, grow up to be a very slight 5’7” (1.7m). His forceps delivery left a permanent scar on his face and damaged an eardrum, the latter injury keeping him out of the services during World War Two. His non-participation in [...]

The exquisite Grace Kelly.

March 13, 2016 // 10 Comments

  Fans of Grace Kelly (and I am one of them, believe it or not) are probably going to jump up and down if they read this, and accuse me of ‘muck-raking’ or, at best, sensationalising her track record (or should I say ‘sack’ record) with members of the opposite sex. Be that as it may, there is a plethora of sources to draw from when it comes to Grace and her penchant for [...]

Great character actors Pt 2.

March 7, 2016 // 0 Comments

    Celeste Holm was, in my opinion the most likeable of all the character actors down through the decades, although I am willing to admit that this may very well have had a lot to do with the kind of characters she invariably played. She was a kind of more sophisticated version of Eve Arden whom I shall get to later in this series, a wise-cracking, honest, self-deprecating woman of the [...]

AVA – ‘She can’t sing, she can’t act, she can’t talk. She’s terrific!’

March 1, 2016 // 2 Comments

      Ava – a unique beauty                            If Ava had not decided to meet her sister Beatrice in New York in 1941, we might never have heard of Ava Gardner the actress. Beatrice’s husband was a professional photographer and offered to do a portrait or two of Ava and display them in his 5th Avenue studio window. One thing led to another and before long she was [...]

Tragic Hollywood – no end of stories.

December 12, 2015 // 0 Comments

Louise Brooks once described Buster Keaton as the most beautiful man she ever saw. Be that as it may, he was certainly a comic genius. While other funny men relied on slow-cranking cameras and speeded-up images to get their laughs, he mostly worked at normal speed, much of his humour coming from scenes in which he hardly moved at all. And he never threw a single custard pie in any of his [...]

Did you know? Points of interest Pt. 24.

November 11, 2015 // 9 Comments

  Yesterday I stole 203 minutes out of the remainder of my life and watched the Liz Taylor, Rock Hudson and Jimmy Dean 1956 blockbuster Giant. I have certainly seen worse movies, but two hundred and three minutes! I found Rock and Liz to be far better than I expected, but I am still to understand what all the fuss was about Jimmy Dean. Half the time he was incoherent, the other half he was [...]

Did you know? Points of interest Pt. 21.

November 5, 2015 // 2 Comments

  The 1955 Rodgers & Hammerstein hit musical Oklahoma! was actually shot in Arizona! The songs are every bit as good as those in South Pacific, in my opinion, but the movie contains an overlong dance sequence that is, frankly, boring in the extreme. Surprisingly, Rod Steiger does his own dancing in it (although it was a case of ‘no choice’ because it was impossible to find a dancer [...]

DEAN MARTIN – Mr. Nice Guy.

October 6, 2015 // 4 Comments

  Dino Crocetti was an Italian from Steubenville, Ohio, and Joseph Levitch was a Jewish boy from Newark, New Jersey, and nearly nine years his junior. From the moment they joined up in 1946 to form the comedy duo of Martin & Lewis they were a hit. Within three years they were in the movies; My Friend Irma (1949) and At War With the Army (1950) being their first, and on their way to [...]

The truth about the making of ‘From Here To Eternity’ (1953)

September 9, 2015 // 22 Comments

  When James Jones wrote his best-seller From Here to Eternity, he based it on his own experiences in the US Army on Hawaii just prior to the Pearl Harbor bombing. The original manuscript contained extensive use of the word ‘fuck’, which made it totally unacceptable to the Catholic group called The National Organization for Decent Literature, who blacklisted it and brought considerable [...]
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