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Wife vs. Secretary (1936)
Brilliant comedy-drama with some real issues about business
I know this is 1936, but this really illustrates how far women have come in the workplace.
Jean Harlow's character, Whitey, really is a first-rate secretary. In a later era, she would've been Van's (Clark Gable) assistance, instead of a secretary. Her affection for her boss is one of respect initially not lust.
Myrna Loy's character is the typical, educated high society wife. She knows nothing about his business, and it never occurs to Van to let her in on the secret plan he has to buy another magazine. So, when he goes to a convention to sell the magazine owner on the proposed sale, his wife knows nothing about this scheme. She assumes the worse when Whitey is called down assist in the purchase procedures.
This is all innocent, but, of course, due to the times, the wife becomes convinced that there's a rendezvous in process.
This is an excellent made film, and it's one of Gable's best performances. Harlow and Loy are perfect and supporting cast including May Robison and a young James Stewart are picture perfect.
My Little Margie (1952)
Great 1950's sitcom and the sets were fascinating
Loved the show...The other comments are spot on.
I wanted to add this bit of trivia about the show's location and the set design.
First off, I lives in New York for a number of years and the outside of their 'hotel' looks nothing like any building I ever saw in New York! Also, all of the rather high styled furniture used in the Albright's apartment was of California origin; Glenn of California, etc. Much of it was very classic West Coast mid-century modern pieces, yet's it's simply not reasonable to have imagined that this lot of West Coast furniture would've been used in an upscale New york apartment.
Bottom line, the choice of furnishings give this sitcom away as being a West Coast production, unlike "I Love Lucy", which looks like it COULD'VE been shot in New York!
The Opposite Sex (1956)
Wretched in every way
I'm not a big fan of MGM's classic splashy musicals, but this one is really such a load of poorly written crapola. Of course, the basic story is great; a groundbreaking Broadway play that ran 666 performances, and an even better 1939 film.
To my eyes, everything's wrong with this stinker.
And, I'm not the only who feels this way...just read most of the other reviews!
Only Agnes Moorehead gets the chance to give a good performance; a sophisticated type of part she was not offered too much.
Everyone else is quite horrible.
Words and Music (1948)
Inaccurate tacky late 40's musical
This and WB's "Night And Day" are classic examples of how the major studios could distort 1920's and 1930's musical history to what they think was appropriate fact for 1940's audiences.
There's hardly any accurate about this account of Rodgers and Hart's career.
Everyone's dressed in 1947 clothing, even though much of it takes place in the 1920's. MGM was incapable of showing the way things really were (only Minneli's "Meet Me In St Louis" was close to being visually correct.) To top it off, let me be one of the apparent few to consider Mickey Rooney's way-over-the-top typical performance and extremely modest voice. I just don't understand how he became such a huge star.
Love It or List It (2008)
The most obnoxious new program on HGTV
The program is an interesting premise; Canadian homeowners (probably from Toronto) have a house that no longer meets their needs. So they look for a better one while their current house is updated with funds provided by the homeowners.
The problem is, they have selected some of the most difficult, wining, snotty people living in Toronto. During the whole process, the homeowners bitch and belly ache about every update being done to their house, and they hate each house being showed to them.
I rather like Hilary but real estate David belongs on Selling New York or Selling L.A., because he's even more snotty than the homeowners.
I really dislike every aspect of the program that I've seen thus far...and believe me, I don't expect to see any more episodes!
Last Holiday (1950)
It's finally out on DVD from Criterion
Like other J.B. Priestley stories ("The Old Dark House" and "An Inspector Calls") this one has a surprise ending and a dramatic story laced with humor and irony.
Brilliant cast including Alec Guinness, Kay Walsh, Beatrice Campbell, Wilfred Hyde-White and plenty of other sturdy, talented British character actors.
Everything great about this film, although the Criterion print is quite dark.
For those of you who enjoy the best of British Cinema, this is a great film to own.
The Talk of the Town (1942)
It's one of those priceless comedies with serious social drama built in!
Not only is this about the best performances Jean Arthur and Ronald Coleman, this is about the best performance Cary Grant did in the 1940's.
The supporting cast is first rate; it's nice to see Edgar Buchanan getting such a big non-Westerns role. Leonad Kinsky and Rex Ingram are great too. And Charles Dingle repeats the same type of brilliant, oily performance that he showed in "The Little Foxes".
The plot moves from light comedy to screwball comedy to serious social drama in the flick of an eye and it all works.
An essential 1940's film that should be in everyone's DVD library.
A Midsummer Night's Dream (1935)
Thalberg has nothing to do with superb production
Other than Dick Powell being miscast, the entire film is superb. A previous reviewer mentioned Thalberg, who worked at Universal then MGM. He had nothing to do with this Warner Bros. production.
Grant Mitchell and Veree Teasdale, two rather overlooked character actors are especially good here. (As usual, supporting performances in 1930's films are often the best thing about a particular film.)
It's nice to see James Cagney in a rare change-of-pace performance. He's very good, indeed.
The young Mickey Rooney is a bit much here, but I guess that's what the part called for.
Libeled Lady (1936)
Brilliant classic comedy, but is it Screwball?
All of the prior comments are right on the money about this brilliantly written and acted 1936 comedy, but I would question is it really deserves to be considered a "Screwball" comedy.
Like all furniture from the 1930's is classified as "Art Deco", many very funny comedies from the pre-war sound era is called "Screwball", and I would suggest that for a comedy to be properly classified as "Screwball", it has to be a bit more crazy, a bit faster, and not quite as situational.
This wonderful certainly has some 'Screwball" elements, but it's as much of a high comedy.
I wish people who classify films of the 1930's would be a bit more thoughtful about which film belongs in a category without rewriting the style.
Singin' in the Rain (1952)
Here's 1 person who hates this movie
I know this film is considered a classic among classics, but as a knowledgeable fan of 1920's music, I always thought this film was the most typically bad example of rewriting late 1920's/early 1930's history. Yes, the settings and costumes are more proper to the period than other films, but the arrangements of the music is strictly 1952.
Also, I must put in a plug; I have always thought that Gene Kelly was the most overrated Dancer/Actor of that era.
So, while I'm sure that my comments won't change anyone else's love for this movie, I, for one, have always thought it was another typical 1950's musical attempt at history with no grains of truth.