When the bed of roses palled, there were tiger skins.
The Deaf and Dumb Society reproved Aileen Pringle for this tender scene. Her lips were actually saying to Conrad Nagel, “If you drop me, you bastard, I’ll break your neck.”
- Three Weeks (1924)
1924 “His Hour” starring John Gilbert and Aileen Pringle, based on a novel by Elinor Glyn. An English widow goes to Russia to visit her god-mother. While there, a Russian nobleman falls in love with her. She tries not to reciprocate, as his passionate nature frightens her. At last he gets her alone. She tries to hold him off with a gun, but after many hours she faints. Here, he is unlacing her stays to check her heart. She awakens and thinks he has ravished her. This is a lost film, dammit! All that nostril-flaring and bosom-heaving would be such fun to watch! Color by Gagman66.
Not entirely lost!!! There have been screenings, though with Czech titles. Someday we’ll see this… in the meantime, an excrutiating wait
Cute picture of Joan Crawford and Robert Montgomery in “Untamed” (1929). This was JC’s first sound movie!
Wow wow wow - where did this come from! Absolutely adorable
Forsaking All Others (1934)
This is really well done, love it
Mae Murray multi-media
By no means brand-spanking new, but new to me and really delighted I found it.
Michael G. Ankerich published a biography on Mae Murray last year - Mae Murray: The Girl with the Bee Stung Lips (with forward by none other than Kevin Brownlow). He’s been blogging about it as well, and I found this particular post from Dec an absolute treat:
A three-part, 20 minute interview Murray did in 1960 upon the release of her first biography. Really wonderful stories about the making of The Merry Widow, Rudolph Valentino, Eric von Stroheim, and the release of an early hit of hers from 1921, Peacock Alley (the image above is from that film)
Then, very shortly after stumbling across this little gem, I found said biography at the Internet Archive. You can read The Self-Enchanted, Mae Murray: Image of an Era by Jane Ardmore, at the link below
Only recently saw this for the first time. The songs are appallingly grating and awful, but it was a lovely treat for my newfound appreciation of the wonderful Ben Lyon.
The Hot Heiress (1931)
Watching now: Thirteen Women (1932). It’s a bank holiday weekend, so practically a Saturday night. Perfect night for an old fashioned horror film.
Films Seen in 2013:
146. Thirteen Women (1932, Archainbaud)
A preposterous and thus impossible-to-resist early slasher-like Pre-Code. I’ve always been fascinated by the systematic yellowface casting of Myrna Loy in Eastern dragon-lady parts throughout the early 30’s. Here, her character blurts out her sufferings in the final minutes, stuck between desperate attempts at assimilation and not being seen as human to those around her, which the film itself further perpetuates at every turn. She is mystical, a villainous Other, with a left-of-field revenge plot that might be the most absurd revenge scheme ever in a film. This is all intriguing stuff and Loy is easily the most interesting part of Thirteen Women with her piercing eyes, unmovable stance and fabulous costumes. The rest of the women are just sort of there, barely developed and then offed; the film clocks in at just under an hour. Along the way there are bombs planted in rubber balls, suicides, murders, happily single and proudly independent mothers, hints at past promiscuity and heaps of gullible women who succumb to the power of suggestion. It’s a bizarre oddity, which makes it a lot of fun to watch.
Anytime I encounter yellowface I always try to promote the PBS documentary Hollywood Chinese, which looks at the history of yellowface within Hollywood films.
Gloria Swanson and Ricardo Cortez ’ A Society Scandal’
Myrna Loy by Preston Duncan
One of THE funniest films of 1932, and for a movie-making year that turned out to be such an embarrassment of riches, that’s really saying something. Too many zingy one-liners to mention, but Lupe Velez’s Broadway debut with ‘Hey Mr Carpenter’ is to die for…
Favourite actors: Lon Chaney in The Unknown (1927)
If someone thinks that silent films only ever managed slapstick pratfalls and hammy romance, just unleash the acting talent of Chaney and the incredible plotline of The Unknown on them.