The Golden Age of Hollywood

A companion thread to my "What's the Last DVD You Purchased?" thread. I thought it might be fun to discuss what we all are watching or have recently watched. Below will be my first post in this thread.

Kevin

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Or I could watch the Movie of the Week, Millie.

I found a movie on YouTube that I think will be right up my alley. It's a romantic comedy from 1938 starring Constance Bennett, called Service De Luxe. Has anyone ever seen it? I started watching it last night but fell asleep, so I will have to try again.

I have not seen it, but I do know as a matter of trivia that it was the film debut of Vincent Price.  I'm always doing that, putting a movie on and nodding off. If it's on YouTube I might have a crack at it myself.  Thank you for the advice! x

I didn't know that, but the description did say it also had a "very young" Vincent Price. Thanks for the trivia tidbit!

I haven't watched a film in some weeks, I'm afraid.  There are a number of reasons for this: firstly, poor health makes it difficult for me to concentrate for extended periods at the moment.  I'm hoping this may improve.  The second reason is that I currently don't have a TV set up.  I have a computer monitor which is rigged to a hard drive (and a Blu-ray player) and I will watch movies from that when I am able to. 

One thing I am doing (but not yet completed) is a list of films that I have watched since December 1984, numbering almost 5,000 titles (no film should be entered twice).  It's going up on Letterboxd, and while I am up to around 2012, it's not quite finished yet.  I will let you know when it is.  I hope you don't mind me adding this to your thread.  

Actually, I did watch a film the other day; the Elvis Presley film G.I. Blues (1960).  A friend of mine is an Elvis fan like myself and so we decided to watch it yet again.  I have all 31 of Presley's movies on hard disk.  G.I. Blues is fabulous entertainment.  It was his fifth film, the first after he got out of the Army, and naturally enough it was all about a soldier serving in Germany.  The formula for his next 27 films was already in place.  Comedy, songs, more comedy, fight, songs, meets girl, falls in love, songs, loses arrogance, songs, helps out his friends, and finally a couple of songs.  For the ease with which you completely forget about the world around you, an Elvis Presley film is hard to beat. x

G.I. Blues is one of my favorites of his films. My very favorite is Blue Hawaii.

I'm sorry your health issues get in the way of watching movies. That is rough! But I am in awe that you remember all the movies you've seen since 1984. I'm sure I don't.

I had two birthday DVDs arrive, which I'm looking forward to watching, in addition to Service De Luxe.

I watched Satan Met a Lady not too long ago, one of those cases where you appreciate a film much more the second time around. Loved most of the comedy elements, the detective ones to a lesser extent. Not much of a part for Bette but Marie Wilson gets to shine a little and as a massive fan of Arthur Treacher, how could I not enjoy myself? He doesn't even have to be a butler...  

Wasn't that the first film adaptation of The Maltese Falcon?

It was the second. David Gritten (Halliwell's Film Guide) calls it a perversely rewritten version of that 1931 one! He still admits that it's fascinating though. 

I have a Bogart box set which includes a 2-disc version of the 1941 The Maltese Falcon.  On the second disc are the 1931 version and Satan Met a Lady. x

I just watched Service De Luxe on YouTube. I loved every member of the cast except for Vincent Price. I don't think he was effective as a leading man, but part of it was the script. His character was arrogant and to me, repulsive. But everyone else (except for Audrey, played by Joy Hodges) was adorable--Constance Bennett, Charlie Ruggles, Helen Broderick, and Mischa Auer. I don't think modern audiences could stomach the arrogance of Vincent's character, but times were different then. It's summed up by the fact that as part of his proposal, he suggests that the successful business Constance's character has built up be renamed after him, and she agrees with stars in her big, adoring eyes. Gag. Otherwise a cute romantic comedy.

I think there are a number of aspects of 1930's values that make us gag today - sexism and racism are the two major ones.  I'm writing a blog about Gone With the Wind (don't tell anyone) which includes a lot of both, I'm afraid.  It is a fact of life of that period, and we have to make allowances for it - accept that that is how it was then, thank God it isn't now.  I still think Service De Luxe is worth a look and will do so in the next day or three. x

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