torsdag 24. august 2017

Thursday Movie Picks; The Stage

It's a new Thursday, which means a new Thursday Movie Picks post, thanks to the blog Wandering Through The Shelves. The theme of the week is "The Stage" and here is my picks.

Limelight by Charlie Chaplin - if this one doesn't fit the theme, nothing will.

Mephisto (1981) - about a stage actor in pre-WW2 Germany

To Be or Not To Be (by Mel Brooks) - for me, this is one of the funniest movies about the stage

1 kommentar:

  1. GREAT choices!!

    Limelight may be my favorite Chaplin film. Such a lovely, gentle tale where Charlie will break your heart. I put it off for years because Chaplin's magic escaped me but I've come to appreciate most of his work as the years have passed.

    I have a hard time choosing between the two versions of To Be or Not to Be over which is my favorite but while the Jack Benny/Carole Lombard take has subtlety on its side this version is more laugh out loud funny with a raft of wonderful performances.

    I've always wanted to see Mephisto but it is near impossible to find! The hunt continues.

    I went with older titles this week but then the stage has always held a fascination for movie makers.

    The Velvet Touch (1948)-Stage star Valerie Stanton (Rosalind Russell) attempts to break ties with her longtime producer and paramour Gordon Dunning (Leon Ames) after the closing of her latest play so she can move on with her life and career but during an argument in his office she accidently kills him. Unobserved she leaves and as suspicion falls on Gordon’s former flame Marian Webster (Claire Trevor) the film looks back at how matters came to such a pass. Meanwhile jocular policeman and theatre buff Captain Danbury (Sydney Greenstreet) investigates. Nice stage atmosphere and excellent performances add much to this undeservedly obscure, efficiently made little drama with a twist of noir thrown in that has a great ending.

    A Double Life (1947)-You’ve heard people jokingly tell others when they are getting carried away with something to “not get lost in the part!” but that’s just what happens in this noirish drama that won Ronald Colman a Best Actor Oscar. Anthony John (Colman) is a famed stage star greatly respected for his Shakespearian interpretations. The problem is that he lives the roles both onstage and off, when playing comedy he is the best guy in the world but when the material is dark so are his moods which among other things has led to the end of his marriage to his frequent costar Brita (Signe Hasso). Now he’s undertaken Othello and as he immerses himself deeply into the role his sanity begins to slip putting all around him including Brita and his mistress Pat (a young, whippet thin Shelley Winters) at risk.

    42nd Street (1933) - Aspiring hoofer Peggy Sawyer (Ruby Keeler) is a greenhorn new to the Broadway stage where through a friendship with two other chorines, the brassy Lorraine (Una Merkel) and the loose “Anytime Annie” (Ginger Rogers) she gets a spot in the chorus of a new show “Pretty Lady”. Through huge contretemps the star of the show has to bow out and Peggy is plucked from the line and told by the producer Julian Marsh (Warner Baxter) “You’re going out there a nobody…but you’ve got to come back a STAR!” And she does with the help of mind bogglingly elaborate dance numbers staged by Busby Berkeley. Incredibly influential musical invented just about every cliché in the book.