|Index||4 reviews in total|
Ken Murray hosts this made-for-TV special and narrates many clips from his home movies of Hollywood, spanning the year 1927 to the early 1960s. (Note that these home movies are silent, and Ken's narration is a voice-over.) You'll see clips of some stars at home, including Robert Cummings swimming with his toddler daughter in their swimming pool, and Jayne Mansfield at home with her husband and children. Ken also shows clips from his vacation in Montana with Glenn Ford, Charles Ruggles, and Van Heflin. You will see Bob Hope in several separate clips, including one with him on the golf course. There's also clips of Bing Crosby playing baseball on an empty sandlot with his three sons. Ken includes some good footage of Sunset Boulevard, Paramount Studios, and Hollywood Boulevard. I also enjoyed seeing clips from a celebrity baseball game used to raise funds during WWII. Other classic stars featured in short clips include Jane Russell, Leslie Howard, Bette Davis, Frank Capra, Hope Lange, W.C. Fields, Charlie Chaplin, Elizabeth Taylor, John Barrymore, Clark Gable, Carole Lombard, Thomas Mitchell, and others. This hour-long presentation is a cute, nostalgic, and "happy" glimpse at the old studio days of Hollywood. It's completely clean and positive, with no gossip thrown in. Turner Classic Movies shows this documentary at times, and you'll probably enjoy watching it if you love classic film stars.
This documentary has been shown on TCM. It is entirely in black and
white and made up of home movie footage shot by actor Ken Murray.
Kenstarted making home movies when he came to Hollywood. He narrates
the silent films and tells stories about "the old days". There is great
footage of Hollywood Blvd., Chaplin Studios and Paramount.
The documentary also features many celebrities such as Charlie Chaplin and Bob Hope. Chaplin, ever the ham, tries to ride on one of those bicycles with the giant front tire.
Another great shot features two legends mugging for the camera: Jimmy Durante and Sid Grauman.
The documentary runs just under an hour and closes with a shot of Ken's star on Hollywood Blvd.
I would recommend this to any film who wants to look back at old historic Hollywood.
Ken Murray takes the viewer on a trip through the Hollywood of the '20s
and beyond in this 1965 show featuring some of his famous home movies.
What a treat to see Hollywood Boulevard as it looked in 1927, and to
see people like Jean Harlow and Clark Gable on the movie lot and at
parties. There were some wonderful moments - Bob Cummings teaching his
little girl how to swim as she held onto his neck, a smiling Glenn
Ford, a look at the glamorous Pickfair as well as Mary Pickford and
Douglas Fairbanks. There was W.C. Fields posing for Murray, Murray
himself appearing at an old Hollywood theater, and a dog act. We get to
see what the old home movie cameras looked like as well.
This is a charming black and white escape into a simpler time. Didn't much enjoy the wiggling fish and the Indian sequence was a little bit politically incorrect, but there is certainly plenty to enjoy, as usual, in Murray's home movies.
Hollywood My Home Town (1965)
*** (out of 4)
Ken Murray hosts this documentary that covers three decades in Hollywood as he shows off his home movies, which feature a large number of major stars. The list goes on for dozens and dozens of names but some of the bigger names include Astor, (John) Barrymore, Bellamy, Capra, Chaplin, Cody, Cooper, Costello, Crosby, Davis, Durante, Fairbanks, Fields, Flynn, Ford, Gable, Gaynor, Grant, Harlow, Hayward, Hope, Karloff, Lancaster, Lemmon, Lombard, Loy, Pickford, Power, Rogers, Rooney, Scott, Sinatra, Stewart, Taylor, Tracy and Turner. Many, many others are showcased here but as you can tell from the list, this documentary has just about everyone you'd want. For the most part the camera footage is in rough shape but this is expected as a lot of the footage is just Murray catching stars as they are walking by. Sometimes third parties hold the camera and one funny sequence has a woman not knowing how to work it. If you're a fan of classic cinema then this here is a must see because of getting to see so many great stars off the set. Chaplin has an extremely nice bit where he's somewhat in his Tramp character and doing a small act for the camera. We see the likes of Cody just walking around the streets of New York and being kind enough to stop for the camera. Other fun stuff includes seeing Barrymore and Harlow golfing, Costello and Ford fishing and a nice sequence with Tracy playing around. It's also fun seeing how these rich people lived, what type of houses, their pools and even how the streets looked back then.
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