My Movie Alphabet

20 Dec

Duke Mantee over at Spoilers did one of these as part of a blogathon, so I decided I wanted to do one, too.  I guess the blogathon is put on by this person.

A:  At Long Last Love

Forcing the driver to drink champagne. Good idea, errbody.

Oft-maligned tribute to ’30s musicals.  I happen to really like this movie for the silliness it is, probably spurred on by my irrational devotion to Cybill Shepherd (not to mention Madeline Kahn, Eileen Brennan, Burt Reynolds, and Cole Porter, but one need not be irrational to be devoted to those).

B: Bad Seed, the

Look at them crazy eyes! Also, I love the mom’s blouse.

I saw this for the first time in a hotel room with my mom when I was in 6th grade.  I was pretty sure it was the creepiest.  I saw it again recently and realized it’s a pretty smart, sharp movie.

C:  Cleopatra

Watch out, Warren William. That’s Cleopatra–comin’ atcha!

Claudette Colbert, you crazy and fabulous, gurl.  I love you in pre-codes and in weepy wartime numbers equally, but this movie is so decadently and art-deco-ly delicious.

D: Double Indemnity

Price check aisle 5–adultery and murder BOGO.

Best noir.  I taught it to a senior English class once as a companion piece to Macbeth.  We talked about Phyllis and Lady Macbeth as femme fatales and Walter and Macbeth as tragic heroes.  It was pretty great.

E: Electra, Mourning Becomes

I always forget Kirk Douglas is in this. I usually hate that dude, but he’s ok as Civil War Electra’s boyfriend.

I’m a sucker for Greek tragedy, and even though this movie is SOOOO long, I don’t think I was ever bored watching it.  And if I was, at least it gave me time to draw my incestuous love diagram, which is definitely a thing I did do.

F:  Falcon, Maltese

Not in the face, Bogie!

I think something different about the Marlowe/O’Shaughnessy relationship every time I see this movie.

G:  Golddiggers of 1933

Ear-way in-yay e-thay oney-may!

I knew pretty much every word of this movie in 9th grade.  Not sure why I loved it SO devotedly.   Oh, that’s right:  Ginger Rogers sings a verse of “We’re in the Money” in pig-Latin, and Joan Blondell rules so hard, and Busby Berkely choreography is the bomb.

H:  His Girl Friday

These two and their facial expressions. Lol.

Rosalind Russell’s outfits kill me–she changes like 4 times in what’s supposed to be a 24-hour-ish period.

I:  It’s a Wonderful Life

“And dance by the light of the moon!”

Why can’t I have a boyfriend like George Bailey?

J:  Jeopardy

“Oh hey, Handsome Fugitive. Wanna help me save my husband from a watery death?”

One of my favorite things about Barbara Stanwyck is how very B-movie she is.  Even though she’s a marvelous actress, she just seems so raw and real, like she might take you for a ride on a motorcycle if you knew her in real life.  Exciting dame, pretty exciting movie.

K:  Klondike Annie

“There. I’m all ready to go out and preach the Word. Oh wait, that comes later in the movie, in a less ostentatious get-up.”

Western musicals set in 1890s Alaska made in the 1940s.  There are at least two movies in this oddly specific category, I have seen both of them, and neither of them is very good; however, they both have crazy costumes.  This one here specifically has insane costumes because Mae West stars in it.  I’d like to see this movie remade, actually, with some real character development for Klondike Annie.  Maybe Amy Pohler could star in it.

L:  Lady from Shanghai, The

Hey, I’m a blonde, and I have a dachshund and a hat like that. Am I secretly the lady from Shanghai?

If it were any more surreal, it would’ve been made by David Lynch.

M:  Maisie

“Good lookin’ overalls ya got there, Maisie.”

Something about this dame resonated with me a lot when I was about 13-ish, and I watched every Maisie I could record from TCM.  The movies are not that good, but I couldn’t get enough of Ann Sothern chewing gum and spouting sass.

N:  Night Nurse

Pictured L-R: Barbara Stanwyck in her undies; skeleton; Joan Blondell in her undies

Barbara Stanwyck and Joan Blondell are up to some pre-code antics that are bizarre and nonsensical.

O:  Old Acquaintance

I love how you can tell which one’s the silly one and which one’s the practical one just by their outfits.

Tragic, stiff-upper-lip, passive-aggressive rage bubbling beneath the surface about to boil over!  I love long-suffering Bette Davis almost as much as I love acerbic Bette Davis whom I love almost as much as reckless, man-stealing Bette Davis.

P:  Pierce, Mildred

Pictured L-R: Tragic mother; awful daughter; best person in the movie

Fave.  Eve Arden sarcasm-ing everyone, Joan Crawford hard-nose-business-lady-ing everyone.  And the wardrobe!  Gimme that wardrobe!

Q:  Queen Bee

The Queen Bee stings!

Post-Glamour Performance!

R:  Random Harvest

“Hey, have you seen my memories anywhere? I think I’ve misplaced them…”

WWI movies = amnesia and heartache

S: Sunset Boulevard

“I am not big; it’s the couch that got small.”

I would totally watch Salome.

T:  Torch Song

“Greetings from the planet Glittertron 5000! I come in pea– Wait. What? I’m not an alien? I’m supposed to be a black person? You’re joking.”

Post-Glamour Performance!

U:  Ugly Dachshund, the

Which one is the ugly one?

It’s like the ugly duckling, except with more dachshunds who are cute and naughty.

V:  Vertigo

“Hey, I just met you, and this is crazy, but change your entire style to better match my old girlfriend, and I’ll love you maybe.”

Doppelgangers!  Emotional abuse!  Nonsense!

W:  Witness for the Prosecution

A Marlene Dietrich post-glamour performance? No such thing exists.

In which Dietrich Dietrichs around.  Why didn’t this lady ever get an Academy Award?

X:  X, Madame

“KHAAAAAAAN you give me a light, please?”

Post-glamour performance!

Y:  Yours, Mine, and Ours

Best wedding outfits ever.

It’s like The Brady Bunch, except with I Love Lucy.

Z:  Zorro, the Mark of

“You had salmon for lunch, didn’t you?”

I’m not usually into swashbuckling movies or Tyrone Power, but this one is all right.  Maybe because I am into tiny mustaches and Basil Rathbone (although I prefer Vincent Price in both villains and mustaches).

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2 Responses to “My Movie Alphabet”

  1. silverscreenings 20 December 2012 at 9:44 PM #

    FA-BU-LOUS list! Nicely done.

    Glad “The Bad Seed” made it on the list, plus a special nod to Cybill Shepherd. I don’t think she gets the recognition she deserves.

    • TheBestofAlexandra 21 December 2012 at 12:32 AM #

      Thanks! And I’m with you on Cybill Shepherd all the way. I loves her sitcom so.

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