Merle Oberon’s terpsichorean trepidation 2

Dance · Film
For those who recently watched THE SCARLET PIMPERNEL (1934) on Turner Classic Movies, a special Jack Cole connection has come to mind from 86 years ago. (Making Jack Cole connections is the name of our game.) Our story involves the film’s glamorous stars, Leslie Howard and Merle Oberon. The duo, co-stars of “Pimpernel” (I just ...

And then … ‘And Then We Danced’ at Scandinavian Film Festival

Dance · Film
A coming-of-age tale straight out of Tbilisi, the film follows Merab (Levan Gelbakhiani), a competitive dancer who is thrown off balance by the arrival of Irakli (Bachi Valisvili), a fellow male dancer with a rebellious streak. “And Then …,” directed by Levan Akin, was screened in the Directors’ Fortnight section at the 2019 Cannes Film ...

Best movie of decade: “Can You Ever Forgive Me?” 1

Film
Our vote is perhaps suspect given a window of ten years — and the selected film dating allll the way back to 2018. Nevertheless, I just love this movie, and don’t feel enough has been made of it. It holds up well at second viewing (I just did that) and recommend it as such. In ...

Hollywood New Year’s babies to convene @ The Barn

Film
Cora Sue Collins, with Freddie Bartholomew, Mickey Rooney and Jackie Cooper in the 1930s. A bunch of New Year’s babies will start our Super-Dooper Double-Double-Digit calendar year (hey! remember 1919?) at the Hollywood Heritage Museum with a very cool program, the latest “Evening at the Barn.” It’s Cora Sue Collins Hollywood Reunion Party! hosted by ...

Calling all Americans! See Oscar-shortlisted docs on the big screen

Film
American Factory “Oscars® Spotlight: Documentaries,” a screening initiative leading up to the 92nd Oscars gives audiences nationwide the opportunity to see Documentary Feature films shortlisted for an award in the 92nd  Academy Awards.® The program, begun last year, is a really wonderful initiative by The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in tandem with AMC ...

Party on, Marion Davies, at the Beach House!

Film
1927: Conrad Nagel (1896 – 1970), Marion Davies (1897 – 1961) and cast and crew of the MGM film ‘Quality Street’ celebrate director Sidney Franklin’s birthday. (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images) Marion Davies (1897 – 1961) — silent film actress, party hostess and the original occupant of the (now called) Annenberg Beach House — is ...

Prop poster portrays choreographer’s bad-taste pinnacle

Dance · Film · Visual arts
This prop poster from The Producers (1968) is displayed outside the theater during the premiere of “Springtime for Hitler,” and is also visible at greater length in the “Playhouse Outtake” on the DVD. It is on auction December 10 at Bonhams as part of the TCM presents: 1939, Hollywood’s Greatest Year sale. “Springtime for Hitler” ...

Sin in style! High-fashion pre-Code double-bill at The Egyptian

Dance · Fashion · Film
Made between 1930, when the restrictive Production Code was adopted, and 1934, when it was in full effect, “pre-Code” films are beloved for their provocative content and risqué style. A Sunday double-bill screening program devoted to pre-Code films is hosted by the Art Deco Society of Los Angeles. The afternoon begins at one p.m. with ...

Thanksgiving with Lydia the Tattooed Lady 1

Film · Music
Our holiday pick: The Brothers Marx in their ode to the much-marked Lydia the Tattooed Lady. In Thanksgiving gratitude for Yip Harburg‘s brilliant lyric, “And a torso even moreso!” Kermit loves her too. Guitarist Gary Lucas plucks the polyphony – and poetry – in Groucho Marx’s torch song to the scribbled dame.

Boy enslaved: ‘Buoyancy’ (2019)

Film · Reviews
A real stunner — and a stunning achievement for a first-time feature-film director named Rodd Rathjen — Buoyancy, the Australian entry for Best International Feature Film at the 92nd Academy Awards. At age 14, Charka (Sarm Heng) chomps at the bit to escape his daily labor in Cambodian rice paddies under his father’s tyrannical command. ...