Archive for August, 2012

More fascinating stuff (or, at any rate, stuff that I find fascinating) from the Photoplay digital archive (this one’s from January 1935).

I guess the mid-1930s public was so accustomed to new technologies gutting the star system that they had begun to expect these purges as a matter of course. Personally, I’d love to see some alternate-reality Singin’ in the Rain about a world in which actors are winnowed out of the spotlight by their unsightly blemishes. (Of course, color-discrimination had been going on in Hollywood and everywhere else in America long before any new filmstrip processes were invented.)

The story continues here and here.

Turns out the article is actually more concerned with forcing readers to accept the idea that good films don’t have to be made in black and white…


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Hitchcock’s Vertigo

Since Vertigo is certainly on a lot of people’s minds these days, I figured I might as well resurrect this characteristically demented post from a few years ago…


Oil up your rubber plant leaves, we’re in for a vertiginous afternoon…


Inspired by David Cairns‘ wonderful Vertigo post, I took another look at the film (a longtime favourite) last night. And today, as fate would have it, I find myself in possession of the power and the freedom to do something about it.

But what?

I’ve read so much about this movie–and referred back to it in so many discussions (often revolving around Lynch, De Palma or 1970s Amazing Spider-Man comics)–that I’m not sure where to begin my own proper blog entry on Hitchcock’s masterpiece.

I do, at least, feel comfortable describing the film in those terms. But that’s where the comfort ends. This is a polarizing movie. And it should polarize you, as a viewer–especially if you happen to be a male gazer. When I first saw it, as a youngster, it made me really

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I’ve been having an obscene amount of fun with the Media History Digital Archive of Photoplay! I think I’ll start posting some of my fanzine findings here, between those colossal (in length and jpg usage, if nothing else) King Vidor posts (I should get to The Patsy later this week).

Today we  have a pair of potted reviews dealing with Helen Chandler (a personal tragic favourite of mine) releases from 1931.

First up: Bela Lugosi’s magnificent Hollywood breakthrough (although you’d never know it from this still and write-up). I’ll be talking about this one at length during the course of my Laemmle Jr. Universal series.

I guess vampires don’t cast their images in fanzines either?

And second, one of my favourite early 1930s romances, Jacques Feyder’s criminally underseen Daybreak.

“See it!”

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