Young Bess
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2012 | 2011 | 2010

4 items from 2011

Elizabeth Taylor, Farley Granger, Jane Russell, Peter Falk, Sidney Lumet: TCM Remembers 2011

13 December 2011 4:16 PM, PST | Alt Film Guide | See recent Alt Film Guide news »

"TCM Remembers 2011" is out. Remembered by Turner Classic Movies are many of those in the film world who left us this past year. As always, this latest "TCM Remembers" entry is a classy, immensely moving compilation. The haunting background song is "Before You Go," by Ok Sweetheart.

Among those featured in "TCM Remembers 2011" are Farley Granger, the star of Luchino Visconti's Senso and Alfred Hitchcock's Rope and Strangers on a Train; Oscar-nominated Australian actress Diane Cilento (Tom Jones, Hombre), formerly married to Sean Connery; and two-time Oscar nominee Peter Falk (Murder, Inc., Pocketful of Miracles, The Great Race), best remembered as television's Columbo. Or, for those into arthouse fare, for playing an angel in Wim Wenders' Wings of Desire.

Also, Jane Russell, whose cleavage and sensuous lips in Howard Hughes' The Outlaw left the puritans of the Production Code Association apoplectic; another Australian performer, Googie Withers, among »

- Andre Soares

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Close up: Sean Penn baffled by Malick's Tree of Life

25 August 2011 10:18 AM, PDT | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Tree of Life actor says he was trying to figure out what role he played in Terrence Malick's Palme d'Or-winning film, while Christian Bale signs on for a new Malick project

The big story

"Mother ... Father ... Always you wrestle inside of me. Always you will. Oh ... and what's going on again?"

This week it emerged that Sean Penn seems to have been as mystified by The Tree of Life as the rest of us. "The screenplay is the most magnificent one that I've ever read but I couldn't find that same emotion on screen," said the actor of Terrence Malick's graceful meditation on the meaning of life / unnaturally long ode to self-involvement.

"A clearer and more conventional narrative would have helped the film without, in my opinion, lessening its beauty and its impact," said Penn. "Frankly, I'm still trying to figure out what I'm doing there and what »

- Henry Barnes

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Young Bess: the true Virgin Queen has gone with the wind

25 August 2011 8:11 AM, PDT | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

This 1953 film recasts the young Elizabeth I as a rapacious Scarlett O'Hara who chases after Thomas Seymour

Young Bess (1953)

Director: George Sidney

Entertainment grade: C+

History grade: B

Princess Elizabeth of England, known as Bess, was born in 1533, the daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn. She would become queen as Elizabeth I in 1558.


At the beginning of the film, the infant Bess is in the care of her nursemaid, Katherine Ashley, who has an appalling habit of talking about her in a syrupy voice using the first person plural: "All we have to do is to see to it that our new stepmother likes us, our appearance, our little ways, and our manners." The princess is being taken to meet her father's latest wife, Anne of Cleves. "Now listen carefully," says Mrs Ashley, wagging her finger. "This one is German. Don't forget that. After all, it's not her fault. »

- Alex von Tunzelmann

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Elaine Stewart obituary

8 July 2011 5:43 AM, PDT | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Alluring actor in a string of glossy Hollywood movies in the 1950s

The seductive brunette Elaine Stewart, who has died aged 81, may have lacked that ineffable essence that makes up star quality, but she had enough allure to attract attention in several glossy Hollywood movies in the 1950s, both in leading parts and noteworthy supporting roles. Among the best of the latter were her brief though memorable appearances in two films directed by Vincente Minnelli.

She was both bad and beautiful in The Bad and the Beautiful (1952) as Lila, a wannabe film star, hoping to make it by sleeping with Jonathan Shields (Kirk Douglas), the studio head. When told that Shields is a great man, Lila responds, "There are no great men, buster. There's only men." The scene which lingers most in the mind is when Georgia Lorrison (Lana Turner), who has just triumphed in a Shields movie, leaves a »

- Ronald Bergan

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2012 | 2011 | 2010

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