Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Cinema Tuesdays {Twentieth Century}

Picture 1
I assume that everyone knows that It Happened One Night is considered to be the first Screwball made. Only, no one ever mentions this little gem, which was released only a few months later and cemented Carole Lombard as the dizzy Queen of Screwballs. I think it's the better movie of the two.
Picture 4

Picture 7
Miss Lombard plays Mildred Plotka, a shop girl who wants to be an actress and has won the lead role in Oscar Jaffe's latest melodrama.
Picture 13
This is the great genius impresario of Broadway, superbly played by John Barrymore. It takes a truly great actor to play an overacting ham while still being funny.
Picture 22

Picture 348
These are Mr. Jaffe's two long-suffering flunkies Owen and Oliver.
Picture 37
The play is naturally a smash and "Lily Garland" is Broadway's newest star.
Picture 44

Picture 46
There are a couple of ways in which you can tell that Howard Hawks made this as a Pre-Code picture. First, if Lily were to take a deep breath in that dress...
Picture 54
Second, the shot of pretty Thirties lingerie.
Picture 64
Check out the garish bed that's shaped like a boat and the silver lame gown and she's not wearing a girdle!
Picture 71
Years later, after a string of hit plays, Lily is upset that Oscar is working her like a dog and wont let her go out to nightclubs or see her mother. The third way this is Pre-Code is that Oscar and Lily are obviously living together without any talk of marriage.
Picture 76
Oscar's paranoia leads him to do a very silly thing. He has Lily followed and her phone tapped.
Picture 79

Picture 81
Typical mid-Thirties secretary look, but I love the pince-nez attached by a shoulder chain.
Picture 84
Well, Lily finds out that her phone is tapped, beats up the detective and takes the first train to Hollywood and Oscar loses his genius.
Picture 95

Picture 105
Two years later and Oscar is broke after a string of flops and Owen and Oscar are trying to think of a way to sneak him out of Chicago without being arrested by his creators.
Picture 106
Meanwhile, Lily Garland is the biggest thing since sliced bread.
Picture 136
Eventually, Oscar thinks of a way to sneak onto the Twentieth Century Limited.
Picture 131
Also on the train is a recently escaped religious nutbar, who's running around putting stickers on everything. However, he is mostly harmless.
Picture 148
Hey, looks who's also getting on the train and looks every inch the part of the Big Movie Star.
Picture 151

Picture 159

Picture 168
While Oscar is quietly brooding in the corner, some strange bearded groupies appear at his cabin door.
Picture 192
Turns out they're on tour in the Passion Play.
Picture 202
Finally, the genius returns to Oscar. He'll put on the Passion play and if he can sign Lily as the star, he can raise a million in 20 minutes! Quick Oliver, order me two dozen camels to put on stage.
Picture 225
This scene with Oscar and Lily in her Chinoise pyjamas is just a gas!
Picture 240

Picture 242

Picture 272

Picture 282

Picture 290

Picture 299
Look at who Oliver found in the lounge to be the show's backer.
Picture 311
When the truth is discovered, all Hell breaks loose and Oscar starts playing with a loaded gun.
Picture 318

This is a clip of the Oscar loses his genius scene.

1 comment:

barncat said...

Another one I've never seen, I'll be sure to look for it. :)