Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Classic Films - A Goal for 2011

One of the things that I am attempting for 2011 is to watch classic films. Unless they were on television, I never really watched them before. I thought I would share my progress so far.

Some Like it Hot
When musicians Jerry (Jack Lemmon) and Joe (Tony Curtis) accidentally witness the St. Valentine's Day Massacre, they get out of town the only way they know how -- dressed as women. But things heat up on the road when they meet a curvy blonde (Marilyn Monroe) who plays the ukulele. This legendary screwball comedy reveals dark, hilarious roots with its transvestitism, palpable sex and winning performances that helped it earn classic status.
This was my first Marilyn Monroe movie and it was very entertaining!

In this Oscar-winning classic, American expat Rick Blaine (Humphrey Bogart) plays host to gamblers, thieves and refugees at his Moroccan nightclub during World War II ... but he never expected Ilsa (Ingrid Bergman) - the woman who broke his heart -- to walk through that door. Ilsa hopes that with Rick's help, she and her fugitive husband (Paul Henreid) can escape to America. But the spark that brought the lovers together still burns brightly.
For some reason I wasn't crazy about this movie... I think I might have to try it again at some point.

My Fair Lady
In this classic cinematic version of the Broadway smash, Audrey Hepburn is at her most radiant as Eliza Doolittle, the Cockney flower girl transformed into a poised duchess by Professor Henry Higgins (Rex Harrison, reprising his Broadway role). The restored and remastered special edition includes an audio commentary with crew members and Doolittle's singing voice, Marni Nixon. The film won eight Academy Awards, including Best Picture.
I wanted to love this movie, but the bad singing and the horrible ending didn't do a lot for me... I wrote a longish review of this one here.

Funny Face
Fred Astaire's inimitable dancing feet come full circle in George and Ira Gershwin's airy 1957 musical gambol about high-fashion photography in Paris, co-starring Audrey Hepburn as a newly discovered fashion model. Paris (and Hepburn) have rarely looked better thanks to Ray June's luminous cinematography, and the classic score includes songs such as "S'Wonderful," "He Loves and She Loves" and the title tune.
This was a good movie. I was starting to think that I wasn't crazy about Audrey Hepburn, but there was something about this movie that really appealed to me...

The Philadelphia Story
Socialite Tracy Lord (Katharine Hepburn) prepares to remarry, but her ex (Cary Grant) and a tabloid reporter (Best Supporting Actor Oscar-winner James Stewart) have other ideas as they converge on her home for a fateful visit. The three stars form an incomparable trio in one of the most tantalizing screwball romances ever. And under the direction of George Cukor, this once-urbane Broadway comedy springs to life with precision and wit.
I loved this movie! The wit was fantastic! I think I like Katharine better than Audrey so far. It was brilliantly done.


  1. I loved The Philadelphia Story!! And I too like Katherine better than Audrey.

  2. Once a month some friends and I get together and watch movies that have won the Oscar for Best Picture. If the movie that won is not out on DVD (some are not) we watch a runner up. I think we are up to 1934 for this month.

  3. I'm watching a lot of classics lately too! I just love them so much!! The Philadelphia Story is one of my all time favs!! You should add Arsenic and Old Lace to your list :) Really good. And Night of the Hunter! Love that one too!

  4. I've never really been fond of Some Like it Hot, though I'm a fan of both Jack Lemmon & Tony Curtis.

    The Philedelphia Story is one of my all time favourites. Cary Grant is my favourtie actor. I remember the day he died. I came home from school, turned on the TV, and there it was all over the news. I cried and cried! I second the Arsenic and Old Lace recommendation.

    Katherine Hepburn is my favourite actress. Bringing Up Baby with her and Cary Grant is a favourite too.

    And just to round things off. Alfred Hitchcock is my favourite director. What he does with b/w cinema is amazing!

  5. Yes, Funny Face is SO MUCH better than My Fair Lady! Loooove Fred Astaire in it! Swoon!!

  6. PLEASE give Casablanca another chance! It's my absolute favorite classic - excellent script.

    It took me forever to get around to watching The Philadelphia Story, but I loved it too. I need to see it again one of these days...

  7. I'm trying to watch more classics too lately. I haven't watched any of the above but been meaning to see Casablanca. I love Audrey Hepburn, but I haven't seen her 2 movies above (I saw Breakfast at Tiffany's and Roman Holiday--both are good). I don't think I've seen Katherine Hepburn too. Lotsa movies waiting!

    ps: A couple of classics I watched recently that I liked were The Graduate and Tootsie with Dustin Hoffman in them. They're great!

  8. *Amanda: Another thing we agree on. :)

    *Nulaanne: That's a fun idea!

    *Chris: Thanks for the suggestions!

    *Nicola: I know, I need to work some Hitchcock into my viewing!

    *Court: I know! I don't get My Fair Lady, but Funny Face had me from the start. She worked in a bookstore after all!

    *Florinda: I will try again, for sure. The Philadelphia Story was great.

    *mee: I was talking about Tootsie last night. Hopefully will be watching it soon. Forgot about The Graduate. I haven't seen that either!

  9. I love Philadelphia Story! I think anything with Katherine Hepburn or Cary Grant are worth seeing.

  10. If the singing in My Fair Lady turned you off, you should consider watching Pygmalion with Leslie Howard (1938, I think). I saw it for the first time this weekend and loved it.

    I do love Some Like It Hot!

    And Philadelphia Story is great fun. I don't know if I dare mention it or not--since I'm not sure if you're a musical sort--but I love the musical adaptation of Philadelphia Story, High Society with Grace Kelly, Frank Sinatra, and Bing Crosby. (It also has Louis Armstrong!)

    I don't know if you're looking for recommendations or not, but I just LOVE It Happened One Night with Clark Gable and I found People Will Talk with Cary Grant to be charming! I'd never heard of it--but I caught part of it on TV and had to get it.

    I just love watching classic movies :)

  11. Bringing Up Baby!!! Classic Cary Grant...sigh.

  12. *Elizabeth: I am working on it. :)

    *Becky: Thanks for the recommendations!

    *Mariel: I have to see that!


Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

I am so sorry, but I turned anonymous commenting off. I have had it from the very beginning, but that is how the spam is getting by my spam filter at the moment. If it is a big deal I will turn it back on and moderate all comments. I also changed moderation from older than 14 days to older than 7.