Mata Hari (1931) - News Poster

(1931)

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Charlize's Birthday Share

Look at all these people who share Charlize Theron's birthday! Our favorite Atomic Blonde isn't even the only South African Oscar winner born on this day. It's quite a day in showbiz history all told. Which of these luminaries will you celebrate today inside your hearts?

Jeanne Moreau as Mata Hari in 1964

1876 Mata Hari, exotic dancer / spy / juicy role for both Greta Garbo & Jeanne Moreau

1884 Billie Burke, Glinda the Good Witch herself (also an Oscar nominated actress for Merrily We Live, 1938)

1901 Yuliya Solntseva, actress/director (the only female to win Best Director at Cannes until Sofia Coppola this summer)

1902 Ann Harding, Oscar nominated actress (Holiday, 1930)

1914 Ted Moore, Oscar winning cinematographer from South Africa

1927 Carl "Alfafa" Switzer of Our Gang fame

1942 Garrison Keillor of A Prairie Home Companion

1942 Bj Thomas, singer of the Oscar-winning "Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head"

1942 Caetano Veloso, singer of the sublime "Cucurrucucú Paloma" which is
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Marlene Dietrich Retrospective Screening at the Metrograph in NYC

Marlene Dietrich in “Shanghai Express”: mptvimages.com/IMDb

If you’re a fan of actress, camp icon, and anti-fascist Marlene Dietrich or want to learn more about her, you’re in luck. The Metrograph theater in New York City is hosting “Marlene,” a retrospective featuring 19 of Dietrich’s films. The festivities kicked off May 23 and will continue until July 8.

Marie Magdalene “Marlene” Dietrich was born in Berlin in 1901. Dietrich began her career as a vaudeville performer in Weimar Germany. She moved to Hollywood and eventually became a revered film actress, “bisexual sex symbol, willful camp icon, [and] paragon of feminine glamour” — “comfortable in top hat and tails, ballgown, or gorilla suit.” But the actress did not forget about what was happening back home in Germany; Dietrich became involved in the fight against fascism during WWII. She “used her likeness to fundraise for Jewish refugees escaping Nazi Germany and performed on Uso tours, earning her the Metal of Freedom and Légion d’honneur by the French government,” the press release details. Dietrich died in 1992 at the age of 90.

The “Marlene” retrospective will feature Dietrich’s seven films with director Josef von Sternberg: “The Blue Angel,” “Morocco,” “Blonde Venus,” “Dishonored,” “Shanghai Express,” “The Devil Is A Woman,” and “The Scarlet Empress.” The actress’ collaborations with Alfred Hitchcock (“Stage Fright”), Orson Welles (“Touch of Evil”), and Billy Wilder (“A Foreign Affair”) are among the other films screening at the Metrograph. A documentary about Dietrich, Maximilian Schell’s “Marlene,” will also screen. All of the films, besides “Marlene,” will be shown in 35mm.

Head over to The Metrograph’s site for showtimes and more information. The featured films and their synopses are below, courtesy of the Metrograph.

Angel

1937 / 91min / 35mm

Director: Ernst Lubitsch

Cast: Marlene Dietrich, Herbert Marshall, Melvyn Douglas

While English statesman Herbert Marshall worries over international affairs, his glamorous wife (Dietrich) concerns herself with, well, international affairs, beginning a tryst with a dashing stranger (Melvyn Douglas) who she only allows to know her as “Angel.” Dietrich’s last film on her Paramount contract is a spry, surprising love triangle, one of the least-known of Lubitsch’s essential works from his Midas touch period.

Blonde Venus

1932 / 93min / 35mm

Director: Josef Von Sternberg

Cast: Marlene Dietrich, Herbert Marshall, Cary Grant

A.k.a “The One with the Gorilla Suit,” which Dietrich dons to perform her big number “Hot Voodoo.” It’s all for a good cause: she’s an ex-nightclub chanteuse who’s gone back to work to pay for husband Herbert Marshall’s radium poisoning treatments, though she later allows herself to become the plaything of Cary Grant’s dashing young millionaire, earning only contempt for her sacrifice.

Der Blaue Engel

1930 / 106min / 35mm

Director: Josef Von Sternberg

Cast: Marlene Dietrich, Emil Jannings, Kurt Gerron, Rosa Valetti

Mild-mannered, uptight schoolteacher Emil Jannings lives a faultlessly law-abiding, by-the-book existence, but it’s all over when he gets a glimpse of Dietrich’s nightclub chanteuse Lola-Lola, and is immediately ready to ruin himself for her amusement. The first collaboration between Dietrich and von Sternberg made her an international star, and linked her forever to her seductive, world-weary delivery of the song “Falling in Love Again.” We’re showing the German-language version, preceded by a four-minute-long Dietrich screen test.

Desire

1936 / 95min / 35mm

Director: Frank Borzage

Cast: Marlene Dietrich, Gary Cooper, John Halliday, William Frawley

Dietrich and Gary Cooper reunite in this delightful urbane comedy by Borzage, a master of romantic delirium, here working somewhat after the style of producer Ernst Lubitsch. La Dietrich’s stylish jewel thief stashes a clutch of pearls in the pocket of an upstanding American businessman, and while trying to get back the goods she can’t help but notice the big lug isn’t half bad-looking. An excuse to recall the following lines from the 1936 Times review: “Lubitsch, the Gay Emancipator, has freed Dietrich from von Sternberg’s artistic bondage.” Those were the days.

Destry Rides Again

1939 / 94min / 35mm

Director: George Marshall

Cast: Marlene Dietrich, James Stewart, Mischa Auer, Charles Winninger

Jimmy Stewart, still in his rangy, impossibly-good-looking phase, is a marshal who sets out to clean up the wide-open town of Bottleneck without firing a shot in this charming Western musical comedy. The local roughnecks present him one kind of challenge; Dietrich’s saloon singer Frenchy, belting out her rowdy standard “The Boys in the Back Room,” quite another.

The Devil Is A Woman

1935 / 80min / 35mm

Director: Josef Von Sternberg

Cast: Marlene Dietrich, Lionel Atwill, Edward Everett Horton

Dietrich and von Sternberg’s final collaboration, and an apotheosis of sorts. In Spain in the early years of the 20th century, Lionel Atwill’s loyal suitor Pasqualito and the revolutionary Cesar Romero are teased into a frenzy by legendary coquette Concha (Guess who?). The coolly scrolling camera and baroque compositions are courtesy of an uncredited Lucien Ballard and Von Sternberg himself, doing double duty as cinematographer.

Dishonored

1931 / 91min / 35mm

Director: Josef Von Sternberg

Cast: Marlene Dietrich, Victor McLaglen

Dietrich plays X-27, a Mata Hari-esque spy for the Austrian Secret Service tasked with using a bevy of costume changes (Russian peasant, feathered helmet, leather jumpsuit) to gather information on the Russians during World War I. Outrageous plotting, high chiaroscuro style, and the star’s earthy sensuality mark this unforgettable pre-code treasure, beloved by Godard and Fassbinder both. Says Victor McLaglen: “the more you cheat and the more you lie, the more exciting you become.”

A Foreign Affair

1948 / 116min / 35mm

Director: Billy Wilder

Cast: Marlene Dietrich, Jean Arthur, John Lund, Millard Mitchell

Against the backdrop of a ruined postwar Berlin, another conflict is just heating up, as Dietrich’s cabaret singer with rumored Nazi ties vies with Jean Arthur’s Iowa congresswoman-on-a-fact-finding-mission for the affection of American officer John Lund. Wilder’s penultimate collaboration with co-writer Charles Brackett is a black comic delight full of crackling, piquant dialogue, and Dietrich’s knowing slow-burn has never been better.

Judgment At Nuremberg

1961 / 186min / 35mm

Director: Stanley Kramer

Cast: Spencer Tracy, Burt Lancaster, Richard Widmark, Marlene Dietrich, Maximilian Schell, Judy Garland, Montgomery Clift, William Shatner

Dietrich’s last truly substantial screen appearance came as part of the ensemble for Kramer’s courtroom drama, playing the widow of a German general executed by the Allies who’s befriended by investigating judge Spencer Tracy in this fictionalized retelling of the events of a 1947 military tribunal addressing war crimes by civilians under the Third Reich. Rounding out the all-star cast are Burt Lancaster, Richard Widmark, Judy Garland, William Shatner, and Maximilian Schell, who would win the Academy Award for Best Actor, and later directed a portrait of Dietrich.

The Lady Is Willing

1942 / 92min / 35mm

Director: Mitchell Leisen

Cast: Marlene Dietrich, Fred MacMurray, Aline MacMahon, Stanley Ridges

Leisen, considered a comic talent on-par with Lubitsch during the screwball era, lends characteristic sparkle to this mid-career attempt at reconfiguring Dietrich’s very 1930s star persona to fit the needs of the 1940s women’s picture; here she plays a glamor-gal diva whose life changes when she discovers a baby on Eighth Avenue and decides to adopt, passing through melodramatic coincidences and a vale of tears before falling into the arms of Fred MacMurray.

Lola

1981 / 113min / 35mm

Director: Rainer Werner Fassbinder

Cast: Barbara Sukowa, Armin Mueller-stahl, Mario Adorf, Matthias Fuchs

Dietrich had for all purposes retired from the screen by the time that Fassbinder began his frontal assault on West German popular culture, but her image and her unlikely combination of cool irony and torrid emotion left a profound mark on his films. Lola, the candy-colored, late-1950s-set capstone of his “Brd Trilogy” in particular draws heavily from The Blue Angel, with bordello singer Barbara Sukowa torn between Mario Adorf’s sugar daddy and Armin Mueller-Stahl’s incoming building commissioner in boomtown Coburg.

Marlene

1984 / 94min / Digital

Director: Maximilian Schell

More than twenty years after Schell had co-starred with Dietrich in Judgment at Nuremberg, during which period she’d retired to a life of very private seclusion, he tried to get her to participate in a documentary about her life. She finally gave in — sort of. Dietrich offered only her memories and her famous voice, refusing to appear on camera, but necessity became a boon to the resulting film, a sort of guided tour of Dietrich’s life and work, which simultaneously reveals much and deepens her mystery.

Morocco

1930 / 92min / 35mm

Director: Josef Von Sternberg

Cast: Marlene Dietrich, Gary Cooper, Adolphe Menjou

After The Blue Angel, shot in Germany, was a hit, von Sternberg was given full run of the Paramount backlot, where he would conjure up all manner of exotic destinations out of thin air. First stop: North Africa, where French legionnaire Gary Cooper competes with sugar daddy Adolphe Menjou for the favors of Dietrich’s cabaret star Amy Jolly, who in one scene famously rocks a men’s tailcoat and plants a smooch on a female fan.

Rancho Notorious

1952 / 89min / 35mm

Director: Fritz Lang

Cast: Marlene Dietrich, Arthur Kennedy, Mel Ferrer, William Frawley

Teutons Lang and Dietrich team up in a Technicolor wild west of deliberate, garish artifice in this singularly claustrophobic oater, in which a revenge-mad Burt Kennedy goes looking for his fiancée’s killers at a hideaway inn run by Dietrich, and discovers dangerous, unbidden desires instead. As the chant of the film’s recurring, persecutorial Brechtian ballad goes: “Hate, murder, and revenge.”

The Scarlet Empress

1934 / 104min / 35mm

Director: Josef Von Sternberg

Cast: Marlene Dietrich, John Lodge, Sam Jaffe, Louise Dresser

Have ever a screen persona and a historical personage found such a hand-in-glove-fit as did Dietrich and Empress Catherine the Great of Russia? While the Motion Picture Production Code was preparing to chasten American movies, Dietrich and von Sternberg got together to throw one last lavish S & M orgy, a flamboyant film of 18th century palace intrigues and ludicrously lapidary décor.

Shanghai Express

1932 / 82min / 35mm

Director: Josef Von Sternberg

Cast: Marlene Dietrich, Clive Brook, Anna May Wong

“It took more than one man to change my name to Shanghai Lily,” proclaims Marlene Dietrich with the disdain of an empress, though in fact she’s a high-class courtesan, re-encountering former lover Clive Brook on an express train rolling through civil war-wracked China. The fourth of Dietrich and von Sternberg’s collaborations is a riot of delirious chinoiserie artifice and sculpted shadowplay — Dietrich’s co-star Anna May Wong was never again shot so caressingly.

The Song Of Songs

1933 / 90min / 35mm

Director: Rouben Mamoulian

Cast: Marlene Dietrich, Brian Aherne, Lionel Atwill

So often the instrument of corruption, Mamoulian’s film allows Dietrich to be the corrupted one, playing a country girl, Lily, who comes to big-city Berlin and quickly becomes the model and muse of sculptor Brian Aherne. Lionel Atwill’s preening decadent Baron von Merzbach admires Lily’s nude form in marble, and decides to bring the original home with him, where she slips into the role of the cynical sophisticate, though her heart remains with the artist.

Stage Fright

1950 / 110min / 35mm

Director: Alfred Hitchcock

Cast: Marlene Dietrich, Jane Wyman, Michael Wilding, Richard Todd, Alastair Sim

Hitchcock’s last film in his native England until 1972’s Frenzy is an audaciously-structured thriller, making use of an extended flashback and a whiplash narrative about-face. Acting student Jane Wyman tries to save beau Robert Todd from taking the fall for a murder committed by stage star Dietrich, who shows her hypnotic charm in a show-stopper performance of “I’m the Laziest Gal in Town.”

Touch Of Evil

1958 / 95min / 35mm

Director: Orson Welles

Cast: Marlene Dietrich, Charlton Heston, Janet Leigh, Orson Welles

It’s not the size of the part, but what you do with it. Playing a brothel keeper in a seedy border town in Welles’s magnificently baroque late noir, Dietrich only has a clutch of lines, but they’re the ones you remember, whether her famous requiem for crooked cop Hank Quinlan, or her reading of his “fortune”: “Your future’s all used up.” Bold and self-evidently brilliant, you could use Touch of Evil to explain the concept of great cinema to a visiting Martian.

Marlene Dietrich Retrospective Screening at the Metrograph in NYC was originally published in Women and Hollywood on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.
See full article at Women and Hollywood »

Arrow Season 5 Poster Highlights Oliver's Fight for His City

Arrow Season 5 Poster Highlights Oliver's Fight for His City
When it comes to posters promoting new seasons of returning shows, we always appreciate a fresh, dedicated photo shoot — as The CW’s Arrow has done to tout Season 5.

RelatedMatt’s Inside Line: Scoop on Arrow, Supernatural and More

The dramatic poster released on Wednesday via social media features Stephen Amell in a hero shot, clad in the latest upgrade to Green Arrow’s costume, previewing “His Fight, His City, His Legacy.”

As revealed in the logline for the new season, Oliver — with Diggle and Thea now out of the mix and Laurel no longer with us (R.I.P.
See full article at TVLine.com »

Cummings' Ten-Year Death Anniversary: From Minor Lloyd Leading Lady to Tony Award Winner (Revised and Expanded)

Constance Cummings: Actress in minor Hollywood movies became major London stage star. Constance Cummings: Actress went from Harold Lloyd and Frank Capra to Noël Coward and Eugene O'Neill Actress Constance Cummings, whose career spanned more than six decades on stage, in films, and on television in both the U.S. and the U.K., died ten years ago on Nov. 23. Unlike other Broadway imports such as Ann Harding, Katharine Hepburn, Miriam Hopkins, and Claudette Colbert, the pretty, elegant Cummings – who could have been turned into a less edgy Constance Bennett had she landed at Rko or Paramount instead of Columbia – never became a Hollywood star. In fact, her most acclaimed work, whether in films or – more frequently – on stage, was almost invariably found in British productions. That's most likely why the name Constance Cummings – despite the DVD availability of several of her best-received performances – is all but forgotten.
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

A Unique Superstar: 20th Century Icon Garbo on TCM

Greta Garbo movie 'The Kiss.' Greta Garbo movies on TCM Greta Garbo, a rarity among silent era movie stars, is Turner Classic Movies' “Summer Under the Stars” performer today, Aug. 26, '15. Now, why would Garbo be considered a silent era rarity? Well, certainly not because she easily made the transition to sound, remaining a major star for another decade. Think Norma Shearer, Joan Crawford, William Powell, Fay Wray, Marie Dressler, Wallace Beery, John Barrymore, Warner Baxter, Janet Gaynor, Constance Bennett, etc. And so much for all the stories about actors with foreign accents being unable to maintain their Hollywood stardom following the advent of sound motion pictures. A Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer star, Garbo was no major exception to the supposed rule. Mexican Ramon Novarro, another MGM star, also made an easy transition to sound, and so did fellow Mexicans Lupe Velez and Dolores del Rio, in addition to the very British
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

L.A. Now Casting ‘Margreet’ and Other Upcoming Auditions

Talent is currently being sought for the short film “Margreet.” “Margreet” is a short film that is seeking talent to fill 10 roles, and is inspired by the exotic dancer Mata Hari who was accused of spying for Germany during Wwi. The production is seeking both male and female actors, and will shoot this December in Los Angeles. Auditions will be held Nov. 24 in Hollywood. For more details, check out the casting notice for “Margreet” here, and be sure to check out the rest of our Los Angeles audition listings! Photo: Greta Garbo in 1931’s “Mata Hari
See full article at Backstage »

Film Noir and Western Leading Lady Audrey Long, Widow of The Saint Author Charteris, Dead at 92

Audrey Long, actress in B film noirs and Westerns, and widow of author Leslie Charteris, dead at 92 (photo: Audrey Long publicity shot ca. late '40s) Actress Audrey Long, a leading lady in mostly B crime dramas and Westerns of the '40s and early '50s, and the widow of The Saint creator Leslie Charteris, died "after a long illness" on September 19, 2014, in Virginia Water, Surrey, England. Long was 92. Her death was first reported by Ian Dickerson on the website LeslieCharteris.com. Born on April 14 (some sources claim April 12), 1922, in Orlando, Florida, Audrey Long was the daughter of an English-born Episcopal minister, who later became a U.S. Navy Chaplain. Her early years were spent moving about North America, in addition to some time in Honolulu. According to Dickerson's Audrey Long tribute on the Leslie Charteris site, following acting lessons with coach Dorothea Johnson, whose pupils had also included
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

Mata Hari: the partially naked truth about the spook hoofer

Greta Garbo is a delight in this biopic of the exotic dancer executed for espionage, and the supporting moustaches a special treat

Mata Hari (1931)

Director: George Fitzmaurice

Entertainment grade: B+

History grade: B+

Mata Hari (real name Margaretha Zelle) was an exotic dancer in Paris during the first world war. She was accused of espionage and was executed by firing squad in October 1917.

International relations

It is 1917. Russian aviator Alexis Rosanoff (Ramon Novarro) has an amusing moustache and a strong Mexican accent. This must be very early in 1917: Russia was in turmoil that year, with a revolution in February and the tsar's abdication in March. Fortunately, no sign of that here. Rosanoff is taken by imperial Russian general Serge Shubin (Lionel Barrymore) to see the celebrated Mata Hari dance. In real life, he'd have been disappointed: her final performance was in March 1915.

Performance

"Shiva, I dance for you tonight,
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Sexy Garbo, Wrathful Censors, the End of Stardom, and Brutal Murder: Novarro

Ramon Novarro and Greta Garbo in ‘Mata Hari’: The wrath of the censors (See previous post: "Ramon Novarro in One of the Best Silent Movies.") George Fitzmaurice’s romantic spy melodrama Mata Hari (1931) was well received by critics and enthusiastically embraced by moviegoers. The Greta Garbo / Ramon Novarro combo — the first time Novarro took second billing since becoming a star — turned Mata Hari into a major worldwide blockbuster, with $2.22 million in worldwide rentals. The film became Garbo’s biggest international success to date, and Novarro’s highest-grossing picture after Ben-Hur. (Photo: Ramon Novarro and Greta Garbo in Mata Hari.) Among MGM’s 1932 releases — Mata Hari opened on December 31, 1931 — only W.S. Van Dyke’s Tarzan, the Ape Man, featuring Johnny Weissmuller and Maureen O’Sullivan, and Edmund Goulding’s all-star Best Picture Academy Award winner Grand Hotel (also with Garbo, in addition to Joan Crawford, John Barrymore, Wallace Beery, and
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

The First Megabudgeted Hollywood Production to Be Saved by Moviegoers Overseas?

Ramon Novarro is Ben-Hur: The Naked and Famous in first big-budget Hollywood movie saved by the international market (See previous post: "Ramon Novarro: Silent Movie Star.") Turner Classic Movies’ Ramon Novarro Day continues with The Son-Daughter (1933), on TCM right now. Both Novarro and Helen Hayes play Chinese characters in San Francisco’s Chinatown — in the sort of story that had worked back in 1919, when D.W. Griffith made Broken Blossoms with Lillian Gish and Richard Barthelmess. By 1933, however, the drab-looking, slow-moving The Son-Daughter felt all wrong. (Photo: Naked Ramon Novarro in Ben-Hur.) Directed by the renowned Clarence Brown (who guided Greta Garbo in some of her biggest hits), The Son-Daughter turned out to be a well-intentioned mess, eventually bombing at the box office. And that goes to show that Louis B. Mayer and/or Irving G. Thalberg didn’t always know what the hell they were doing with their stars and properties.
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

Greta Garbo: the clothes she wore to be alone

A new exhibition looks at the timeless personal style of one of Hollywood's most famous stars

She famously wanted to be alone, but a new exhibition that opened in London on February 15 offers visitors the chance to get to know a very different side to the mysterious Greta Garbo – by way of her clothes.

Miss G: The Private World of Greta Garbo, curated by fashion journalist and author Bronwyn Cosgrave and jewellery designer Julia Muggenburg, features some surprising items. A vibrantly patterned yoga onesie with matching headband represents Garbo's athletic side. "She was very healthy," says Cosgrave. "She had to maintain her body, so she did yoga. She was an early follower of Joseph Pilates. Yes – before Jane Fonda there was Garbo!"

A rather homely pink-and-white striped cotton apron replete with yellow cooking stains gives visitors a glimpse into a very different side of the enigmatic star, who is
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Sylvia Kristel obituary

Her film career was dominated by her role as Emmanuelle

There can be few film actors so closely associated with one role as was Sylvia Kristel, who has died of cancer aged 60. The title role of the sexually adventurous housewife in Emmanuelle (1974) became a reference for every part she played subsequently. This was not surprising, as the Dutch star did play a character called Emmanuelle, with few variations, many times over.

In the original film, Kristel portrayed the bored wife of a French embassy official in Bangkok, urged by her libertine husband to explore all the possibilities of sex. Thereupon, she finds herself in bed with, among others, a lesbian archaeologist and an elderly roué. Directed with some grace by Just Jaeckin, this glossy soft-porn package, dressed up as art-house erotica, was a huge international hit, becoming the first X-rated film to be released in the Us. Lushly photographed and
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Ramon Novarro Brutal Death Pt.2: Convicted Killer Blamed Catholicism

Movie Star Ramon Novarro Brutally Killed Halloween Eve 1968 Paul Ferguson, in a letter he wrote me at the time I was working on Beyond Paradise, blamed his Catholic background for Ramon Novarro's death: "When [Novarro] kissed me, I reacted like a Catholic, what they call homosexual panic. Some old guy in the desert says, 'Kill homosexuals.' It's inbred. . . . I was too drunk to be civilized. Whatever my most primitive moral standings were, I reacted. It had nothing to do with Novarro, nothing to do with his being homosexual. It all had to do with how I saw myself. And the fact that my brother was there. And that he could see me in that homosexual act. It all had to do with my Catholic upbringing, with my five thousand years of Moses. And that's the only reason why this whole thing happened. Because that's what society teaches you. . . . I think after I hit Mr.
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

Movie Star Ramon Novarro Brutally Killed Halloween Eve 1968

Ramon Novarro Earlier today, after sharing on Facebook a photo of Greta Garbo dressed in Balinese costume in the 1931 blockbuster Mata Hari, I began thinking about 1920s and 1930s Mexican-born MGM star Ramon Novarro (photo), the subject of the biography I wrote several years back, Beyond Paradise: The Life of Ramon Novarro. Mata Hari was one of the biggest box-office hits in the careers of both Garbo and Novarro; the movie is also notable as the only time Novarro accepted second billing after becoming a star. While thinking of Novarro, I remembered that he was brutally killed on this date, October 30, 43 years ago. The following morning, Halloween 1968, the 69-year-old former movie star was found dead at his Laurel Canyon home in the Hollywood Hills. The next few paragraphs were taken from Beyond Paradise: At 8:30 a.m. on Halloween, October 31, [Novarro's personal secretary] Edward Weber arrived at 3110 Laurel Canyon to report for work.
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

new this week in U.S., Canadian, and U.K. theaters: ‘Salt,’ ‘Ramona and Beezus,’ ‘Toy Story 3,’ ‘Splice,’ more

U.S. And Canada/Opening Wide Salt: Angelina Jolie’s CIA agent goes on the lam after she is accused of being a double agent for a cadre of Russians who miss the Cold War. Cuz the Cold War was so much fun. If you can’t make it to the multiplex, try: • The Fugitive (1993): Harrison Ford’s doctor goes on the run in order to prove his innocence when accused of murder; just as thrilling, if somewhat less plausible, than Salt. • The Hunt for Red October (1990): Alec Baldwin’s mild-mannered CIA analyst is forced to become a field agent when Sean Connery’s Russian sub captain aims his nuclear-armed vessel square at the East Coast of the U.S. • Mata Hari (1931): Classic girl-spy stuff with Greta Garbo as the legendary secret agent. • The Avengers (1961-1969): Choose from Diana Rigg as Emma Peel or Honor Blackman
See full article at FlickFilosopher »

Greta Garbo, Hedy Lamarr, Claudette Colbert, Alla Nazimova: “Ornament and the Enchantress” Film Series

Alla Nazimova, Salome (top); Greta Garbo, Ramon Novarro, Mata Hari (bottom) Alla Nazimova’s Salome, Claudette Colbert’s Cleopatra, Hedy Lamarr’s Delilah, and Greta Garbo’s Mata Hari are the four temptresses featured in the "Ornament and the Enchantress" film series presented by Los Angeles’ J. Paul Getty Museum. Charles Bryant’s Salome (1923); Cecil B. DeMille’s Cleopatra (1934), co-starring Warren William and Henry Wilcoxon; DeMille’s Samson and Delilah (1949), co-starring Victor Mature; and George Fitzmaurice’s Mata Hari (1931), co-starring Ramon Novarro, will be screened at the Harold M. Williams Auditorium at the Getty Center June 26-27. "Ornament and the Enchantress" will serve as a complement [...]
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

Beauty Break: Cinco De Mayo

Are you celebrating Mexico today?

Happy Cinco De Mayo!

I'm eating tacos for dinner because it's the least I can do. And I'm also perusing amazing photos of Mexican film stars of yore like the deliriously sexy Lupe Vélez and one star of the right now... Señor Bernal of course. Also deliriously sexy. Especially in closeups.

So I thought we'd drool on six of the earliest crossover sensations tonight with a few films of note (for one reason or another) for each of their careers. If you'd like to investigate further, click on the links. Enjoy!

Lupe Vélez The Gaucho, 1927 | Hot Pepper, 1933 | The Girl From Mexico, 1939

Ramon Novarro Scaramouche 1923 | Ben-Hur 1925 | The Student Prince in Old Heidelberg, 1927

These silent stars had volatile lives and careers, both ending with tragic deaths. Vélez career was a series of ups and downs and some say she was bipolar. She had several movie star affairs
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Ramon Novarro II: Best Films, Rex Ingram

Jeanette MacDonald, Ramon Novarro in The Cat and the Fiddle. Photo: Courtesy Matias Bombal Collection. Ramon Novarro: Allan Ellenberger Interview I How would you describe Ramon Novarro the actor? Novarro was a first-rate actor – maybe not an Olivier, but a good solid actor. Even in bad films such as Laughing Boy (1934), he had his moments. He was excellent in dramatic roles such as the aviator Alexis Rosanoff opposite Greta Garbo in Mata Hari (1931), or as the rapist-suitor of Myrna Loy in The Barbarian (1933). He excelled in light comedic moments, especially in The Prisoner of Zenda (1922) and in several of his musicals including The Cat and the Fiddle (1934) and The [...]
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

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