The Golden Age of Hollywood

Stephen Butler's Blog (4)

Top Hat (1935)

When you think of musicals, you think of song, dance, comedy; you think of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers.  They are, perhaps, the definitive musical film stars.  Their films set the standard for musicals after the huge rush of the genre at the dawn of the sound era.  Astaire and Rogers made ten pictures together; nine were at RKO between 1933 and 1939, while a tenth was made at MGM in 1949 after Judy Garland was forced out of The Barkleys of Broadway.  Top Hat was…

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Added by Stephen Butler on August 12, 2017 at 8:27am — No Comments

Gone With the Wind (1939)

Love it or loathe it, Gone With the Wind is one of the greatest pictures ever made.  And this, my friends, is a blog to match the film: huge, spectacular, colourful (British spellings again, I'm afraid!) and just a little corny in places.  I have used a variety of sources: the many books I have concerning its production, of which I will provide a list of recommended reading if anyone is interested, films that have been made about the production of GWTW (this is a common…

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Added by Stephen Butler on July 29, 2017 at 7:30am — 4 Comments

The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938)

As I have professed on a number of occasions that the 1938 Warner Bros. Errol Flynn / Olivia de Havilland swashbuckler The Adventures of Robin Hood is my favourite film, it makes sense that my first review ought to be about this film.  I first saw the film in 1978, around the time of its 40th anniversary, and it left me open-mouthed with wonder.  It does to this day.  

Let's get some of the technical stuff out of the way.  The film broke all studio records of the time.  It…

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Added by Stephen Butler on July 10, 2017 at 4:30am — 8 Comments

Being Fan of Classic Movies in the United Kingdom [WARNING: U.K. spellings alert!]

Hello!  This is my first blog and - who knows? - it may be my last.  We'll have to see how it goes with this site.  

I became a fan of the 'Classic Movie' (for the purposes of my interest, this is any film made before 1967) back in 1978 when we first got a colour television in our house.  When we switched it on, the first thing we found to watch was the definitive Robin Hood, Errol Flynn in the 1938 Technicolor swashbuckler The Adventures of Robin Hood.  It became my…

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Added by Stephen Butler on July 5, 2017 at 11:06am — 6 Comments

TCM Blog

Ralph Barton and Charlie Chaplin in the Jazz Age

Charlie Chaplin—an icon of cinema—flirted with the fine arts. He sketched on occasion, and he could converse about art and music in social situations, but his strongest connection to the world of art was his friendship with illustrator Ralph Barton. During the 1920s, Barton was a highly successful caricaturist and cartoonist, whose work was elevated […]

Who Has The Last Laugh (1924)?

To view The Last Laugh click here. Nowadays when I talk with my friends about F.W. Murnau (1888 – 1931) they are usually familiar with Nosferatu (1922) or Sunrise (1927). Between those two classics is another masterpiece released in 1924 that is usually overlooked, and one that Georges Sadoul, in his Dictionary of Film Makers […]

A Mother’s Sacrifice in Stella Dallas (’37)

To view Stella Dallas click here. Children rarely understand the sacrifices their parents make for them. Nor should they. The difficult decisions and problems that parents often have to deal with aren’t ones that should be the concerns of a child. In my own life, my parents made sacrifices that I didn’t fully realize or […]

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