Monday, June 30, 2008

The Elwy Yost Interviews

For years, TVO’s Saturday Night at the Movies has been an oasis for film lovers in the province of Ontario. Host Elwy Yost would present two films, linked either by personnel (like, say, The Wild Bunch and Major Dundee) or theme (like The Grapes of Wrath and Bound for Glory). The films were enough on their own, but the cherry on top was Yost’s effusive interviews in the intermission between films. Here’s the first part of a discussion on the Auteur theory with some Hollywood notables.

Friday, June 27, 2008


The magnificence of the Ambersons began in 1873. Their splendor lasted throughout all the years that saw their Midland town spread and darken into a city. In that town in those days, all the women who wore silk or velvet knew all the other women who wore silk or velvet and everybody knew everybody else's family horse and carriage. The only public conveyance was the streetcar. A lady could whistle to it from an upstairs window, and the car would halt at once, and wait for her, while she shut the window, ... put on her hat and coat, ... went downstairs... found an umbrella... told the 'girl' what to have for dinner...and came forth from the house. Too slow for us nowadays, because the faster we're carried, the less time we have to spare.

The Magnificent Ambersons, screenplay by Orson Welles, based on the Booth Tarkington novel

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Friday, June 13, 2008

On Location

William Holden cools off during a break in filming Paris When it Sizzles.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Moments of Distinction

The Film - Fantasia, dir. James Algar (by way of W. Disney)

The Set-Up - A mouse and a magic hat. Nuff said.

What I love about Fantasia is watching with the knowledge that I am seeing a truly seminal moment. Disney had already broken the animation game wide open with Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, and now his animators took what they had already learned and went into hyperdrive. This film reached new heights in just about any area you care to name - Color, movement, music, plot. The bar was now raised.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

The Marquee

Lola Montes, 1955