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Bright light. Bright light. Uh oh.

At about 1:47 of this trailer Eddie sings about 15 seconds of some song with the lyric "Bundle of Joy" in it.
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At about 1:47 of this trailer Eddie sings about 15 seconds of some song with the lyric "Bundle of Joy" in it.
Thanks, Mark. Yeah that's the video I referred to and I thought they left out "Bundle of Joy." I didn't know that was it because it's definitely not the song I'm thinking of.
So I'm still not sure, but the one I'm thinking of must have a different title - it was a much more swinging song with maybe a boogie-woogie beat. And I seem to think it was performed by a major artist of the time.



Sorry to waste everybody's time - but I found it! (It was driving me crazy!)

It is the song "Chattanooga Shoe Shine Boy" and it's the version by Freddy Cannon that I used to hear on the radio (and it does indeed have a boogie-woogie beat). Since it has the lyrics "bundle of joy" - the only ones I remembered - I always thought it was associated with the Debbie Reynolds / Eddie Fisher movie.

What's funny is I always thought this song was called [a great big] Bundle of Joy!
Enjoy.





Bundle of Joy
(1956)

Director: Norman Taurog
Cast: Eddie Fisher, Debbie Reynolds, Adolphe Menjou
Genre: Comedy, Musical, Romance

About: A young single woman (Debbie Reynolds) who's been recently fired from her department store job, goes looking for work and finds an abandoned baby outside of an orphanage. When she takes the baby into the orphanage, they believe the baby is hers, and refuse to believe other wise.

Review: Bundle of Joy is a musical romance comedy, featuring husband and wife team of Debbie Reynolds and Eddie Fisher. The film marks two major events:

1) This was Eddie Fisher's debut film. Eddie had become a singing sensation earlier in 1953-54 with a couple of appearances on the Coke Time TV series, which was a variety show sponsored by Coca-Cola. Hit records soon followed for Eddie and he was offered the staring role in Bundle of Joy. He hated the movie and as fortune would have it, this would be his only starring role. That was in part to his highly scandalous affair with Elizabeth Taylor (both were married at the time.) Eddie did do one more bigger movie, Butterfield 8 with girlfriend Liz Taylor. Bundle of Joy is the only film he sings in, he's a darn good singer too and a decent actor to boot. He should have had a bigger career, but he didn't.

2) The other major event is, Debbie Reynolds was pregnant with a very young Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher) during the shooting of the movie.



Bundle of Joy, is a remake of the 1939 Ginger Roger's movie Bachelor Mother. Shot in gloriously colorful Technicolor the film is a virtual eye candy of mid 1950s high fashions. In one scene the rich boyfriend of Debbie Reynolds takes her on a shopping spree, decking her out in the latest high fashions, reminiscent of the scene from Pretty Woman. The songs in the movie are nice, but nothing to get real excited about. The film is charming and a fun, easy watch. If you get this on the Warner Classics DVD the movie has been beautiful restored and looks great.


Bundle of Joy was a cute movie, but it's not very memorable. There were a few good scenes, like when they're feeding the baby and he's reading from a book and he keeps telling her to rub the food on the baby's navel.

I was surprised that Debbie Reynolds and Eddie Fisher didn't have much chemistry together, but I guess maybe that explains why their marriage didn't work out in real life.

I like Debbie Reynolds a lot in the movie, but I thought Eddie Fisher was kind of bland. (But he has a great singing voice.) And you're right about the songs. They're not much more memorable than the movie.
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The Light Between Oceans (2016)

Director: Derek Cianfrance
Writers: Derek Cianfrance(screnplay), M.L. Stedman(novel)
Cast
: Michael Fassbender, Alicia Vikander, Rachel Weisz
Genre: Drama Romance


About: A returning World War 1 veteran (Michael Fassbender) takes on the lonely task of a lighthouse keeper on a remote island off the coast of Australia. During a visit to the mainland, he meets and marries a young girl (Alicia Vikander). The two of them return to the lighthouse to face life together. That life changes when they discover a baby adrift on a lifeboat.

Review: I found The Light Between Oceans to be a mediocre movie. Visually it was artistically beautiful, with it's muted earth tone colors and soft diffusion look. The story premise too, of a man and his wife alone on a remote island tending a lighthouse, was very promising. This is the type of movie I love.



But the director/writer never really made me feel like I was privy to the lives of the couple. I never felt their emotions (at least for the first half of the film anyway). We see snippets of the character's lives but the moments in between, that are so important for developing finesse, are often missing. I never felt a connection to the characters as the scenes are too brief and mainly function on a surface level. I wanted a deeper existential film and this ain't it.

Real life couple
Michael Fassbender & Alicia Vikander, are the leads, playing husband and wife...surprisingly they didn't have much chemistry. I did like the performance by Michael Fassbender, but didn't care for Alicia Vikander in this.


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Pursued (Raoul Walsh, 1947)
Director: Raoul Walsh
Writer: Niven Busch (screenplay)
Cast: Teresa Wright, Robert Mitchum, Judith Anderson
Genre: Western Noir, Drama Romance

About: An orphan (Robert Mitchum)
in the late 19th century who's raised by the family that hunted down and killed his own family in a land standing feud.

Review: 'She loves him, she really loves him, she hates him, really hates him, she marries him, she wants to kill him, wait a second...she loves him again!'

Poor Thor, she can't seem to make up her mind in this soap styled western. It's not Teresa Wright's fault, she actually turns in a good performance. The fault lies with an inept script that has the characters changing their mindsets as quickly as blowing sand.

Pursued seems like a movie that was rushed into production without a well fleshed out script. Missing is the little details that fills in the back story and gives the characters motivational credibility.

Point in case: Grant Callum (Dean Jagger), the one arm man who vows to kill all of the Rand family, thus prompting Mrs. Callum (Judith Anderson) to save the young boy and raise him as her own. OK so far so good. It even works when the one arm guy spots a 10 year old Rand and takes a pot shot at him. The confrontation that follows in the hotel room between Mrs Callum and Grant promises to be an emotional high light, instead it's played so low key that the film starts to lose credibility. Even worse is Grant, who's blood thirsty to kill Rand, has like another 15 years to do it, but can't seem to find the time! Grant has got to be the most unmotivated killer in any film.

At the end of the story it's funny when Grant and his gang of killers have Rand and Thor surrounded and are ready to lynch Rand. But wait, once Mrs Callum shoots Grant dead, the entire lynching is forgotten about. I guess the lynching mob didn't have any motivation either.

Robert Mitchum who's usually good, sleep walks his performance. I've never seen him look so bored. I don't know what the director Raul Walsh was thinking, but whatever he tried to achieve by having the actors act so deadpan, it didn't work.

James Wong Howe's cinematography and Max Steiner's music score are the films highlights. I'm glad this was nominated as I had not seen it and I'm glad I watched it too.





Rear Window
(1954)

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Writers: John Michael Hayes (screenplay), Cornell Woolrich (short story)
Cast: James Stewart, Grace Kelly, Thelma Ritter
Genre: Mystery, Thriller


About: James Stewart is a photographer with a broken leg who's stuck in a wheelchair in his apartment during a sweltering summer heat wave. He passes his spare time by spying on his neighbors, watching their lives through the rear windows of their apartments that faces his. Suddenly he becomes convinced he's discovered evidence of a murder, when he spots strange things happening in one of the apartments. His high society girlfriend thinks he's lost his marbles, so does his insurance helper, Thelma Ritter.



Review: This was the second time I've seen Rear Window and I had forgotten everything about it, so I'm glad this was on the Hitch watch list.

My favorite scene was the establishing shot starting in the apartment - with the window blinds up, then the blinds go down - the camera then zooms out the window, peeping into the lives of the other apartment's rear windows...finally the camera comes back in and we see it's hot! Stewart is sweating bullets! and the mercury in the thermometer is rising, really rising! Then we see Stewart frantically trying to itch his leg in the cast, brilliant!

That's very well done, as it gives us the feeling of what it's like to be trapped in an apartment, stuck in a wheel chair, bored as hell, while sweltering in the heat...This then drives the story forward and sets the tone for the movie. Which tells us that being a peeping-tom voyeur is not a healthy hobby!

James Stewart is perfect in this role. He's one of my all time favorite actors and is well cast here. And big kudos to a great actress, Thelma Ritter. I loved the scene they shared together at the start of the movie. This is when we learn of Stewart's philosophy on marriage and life. It's a very well written script too. And I just got through watching a short interview with the script writer John Michael Hayes, which was very insightful.



I liked Grace Kelly in this. She's better here than in Dial M for Murder. Even the scriptwriter John Michael Hayes, said she was stiff in Dial M. She's certainly pretty and very fashionable too, just look at those photos! I'd say her best quality is her classy, poise. However she was my least favorite of the actors.

I'm not a fan of Hitch's trick photography, like the glowing effect of the camera's flash bulb, I think it takes away from the rest of the film's brilliance. Hitch is the master of entertainment films, but the more I watch and rewatch his films, I realize they were the blockbuster CG movies of his day, but with Hitch it's the skill that he puts into his direction, that makes his films memorable.

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The Little Foxes (William Wyler 1941)
Director: William Wyler
Writer: Lillian Hellman
Cast: Bette Davis, Herbert Marshall, Teresa Wright, Dan Duryea
Genre: Drama, Romance
About: A rich southern family, the Hubbards, who plot, scheme and cheat to get wealthy.

I've seen this three times now. It's one of Bette Davis' top rated films.

Bette Davis' make up! Very effective at defining her icy cold character. Perc Westmore was her personal makeup artist. The Westmore family has been doing makeup in Hollywood since the start of films. The Westmore name appear on countless films, including many of the noms here, so I thought I pay them some justly deserved credit.

Bette's makeup is quite effective at making her unattractive and harsh looking!....And if you think that's just the way she looked in 1941, check out the photo of her from 2 years earlier in Jezebel, where she played another southern belle.



Bette Davis is amazing here, she could have played her character large, loud and colorful...she often did, but she was no ham and knew what type of performance would best support the film. I'm a huge fan of Miss Davis and I've seen over 40 of her films. She's always amazing.

My favorite characters were:

Patricia Collinge/Birdie (the mom from Shadow Of A Doubt)...Hers was the most heart breaking character and most importantly she's the mirror that shows us the suffering the 'little foxes' inflicts on those around them. Her character worked well as a warning to what might befall Teresea Wright, if she doesn't get away from her mom and change her ways.

Jessica Grayson/Addie who played the head house servant. Films like The Little Foxes and Gone With the Wind gave black actors a chance to play more substantial roles and develop real characters on screen, than they always would have had. I liked Addie she's just about the only sensible character in the movie and she's not afraid to speak her mind or sass Bette Davis! I loved the line when she's washing Zan's (Teresa Wright) hair:

Addie: Hold still, Zan.You had pretty hair when you was little.
You was a mighty pretty little girl.

Zan: Addie, will anybody think I'm pretty now?

Addie: Someday some fool of a man will, I reckon.
Seems there's always somebody for somebody.
But you'll do, baby. You're too young to worry
about such things.
But for me, the standout character, the character that made this movie is Dan Duryea. This was Dan's first movie and launched a very successful career as a character actor, later he had his own TV show. Much like James Dean did, Dan Duryea packs little extras into his acting, like putting a cigar into his mouth and dropping it back in the box when no ones watching. Or fidgeting about. I loved his little roll around the living room in the wheel chair, very naughty. One of my favorite scenes is the shaving scene with him and his dad.




[center]
The Little Foxes (William Wyler 1941)
[left]Director: William Wyler[font=Arial Narrow]
Writer: Lillian Hellman
Cast: Bette Davis, Herbert Marshall, Teresa Wright, Dan Duryea
Love this movie and your review...I think this was in my top five of favorite Davis performances...she is bone-chilling in this movie.



The Loving Story (2011)
Director: Nancy Buirski
Writers: Nancy Buirski, Susie Ruth Powell
Length: 77 minutes
Genre: Documentary, Drama, History

A well made documentary by HBO about Richard and Mildred Loving an interracial married couple who was arrested for being married in D.C. in 1958. Upon returning to their home state of Virginia, they were arrested and jailed...the crime, interracial marriage. They were given a suspended 1 year jail sentence and ordered by the court to leave the state of Virginia. They were not allowed to return together, under penalty of a stiff jail sentence.



Richard Loving and his wife Mildred Loving.

This sounds like fiction, but it's a true story, and it took place from the late 1950s all the way up tell 1967. The film follows the Loving's, and their lawyers, attempts to appeal this landmark case that eventually went all the way to the Supreme Court. That ruling changed the foundation of equality and civil rights laws.

This is a no frills documentary, there's no cheesy reenactments, no fancy CG, no gimmicks..and I found that refreshing. We see the actual film footage of the Loving's, both at home with their children and being interviewed by various journalist. We get to know the couple and see what the were like. The two ACLU lawyers who took on their case are also interviewed as this was a huge national story. At the time this case was resolved, 26 states in America had anti interracial marriage laws.

I highly recommend this film as it's a very personal, human story, it's damn important...and it's the basis of the 2016 movie Loving. Which I reviewed here: Loving

In watching this documenary I developed an even deeper respect for the 2016 movie Loving, which I also recommend.

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Arsenic and Old Lace (Frank Capra, 1944)
Director: Frank Capra
Writers: Julius J. Epstein & Philip G. Epstein (screen play)
Cast: Cary Grant, Priscilla Lane, Raymond Massey, Edward Everett Horton, Jack Carson, Peter Lorre
Genre: Comedy, Crime, Thriller


About: On the day of his wedding, a fussy drama critic (Cary Grant) learns that his old maiden aunts are murders...and that insanity is a hallmark of his family line.


Review: Frank Capra's movies are known for having a certain charm and human spirit with a bright note at the end of the show.



Arsenic and Old Lace was completed in 1941 but not released until 1944. Coming from the tail end of the 1930s, you can kind of get the feel of the 1930s screw ball comedy here.

I really liked the cast, especially Priscilla Lane, she's a real doll in this and is a natural at comedy. So is Jack Carson who played the cop who dreams of being a playwright and Peter Lorre who's hilarious as Dr Einstein. And the two older actresses who played the two eccentric aunts, were priceless. Does anybody remember the TV show The Waltons, I swear the idea of The kooky Baldwin sisters who served recipe in their big mansion in The Waltons came directly from the Brewster ladies with their spiked Elder Berry wine.

Cary Grant is on record for not liking his performance in Arsenic and Old Lace, he especially didn't like the couple of reactionary mug shots he does to the camera. I thought they worked well and were fitting for the style of film. I thought Cary was great in this.

Now I feel like watching more Frank Capra films.





I'm watching Arsenic and Old Lace right now. It's one of those movies that I watch A LOT because I love it so much. Even though Cary Grant didn't like his performance in this movie, I love him in it. However I think Peter Lorre steals the movie.



The Loving Story (2011)
Director: Nancy Buirski
Writers: Nancy Buirski, Susie Ruth Powell
Length: 77 minutes
Genre: Documentary, Drama, History
I'm glad I read this review and I was blown away when I saw the pictures that you printed because the resemblance between the real couple and Joel Edgerton and Ruth Negga in the 2016 movie is uncanny.



Never felt like watching this movie until I read your review.
It's a screwball comedy from the early 40s, so if you know what those are like, then you know what Arsenic and Old Lace is like.



I'm glad I read this review and I was blown away when I saw the pictures that you printed because the resemblance between the real couple and Joel Edgerton and Ruth Negga in the 2016 movie is uncanny.
Gideon, trust me...watch The Loving Story. It will give you even more appreciation for the movie Loving (2106). You'll be amazed by it.




All the Way (2016)
Director: Jay Roach
Writers: Robert Schenkkan(teleplay), Robert Schenkkan(play)
Cast: Bryan Cranston, Anthony Mackie, Melissa Leo
Genre: Biography, Drama, History


About: LBJ...Lyndon Baines Johnson as his presidency and battle to get his Civil Rights Act passed.

Review
: HBO movies turns out one of the more interesting and detailed bio pics on LBJ and his time in the Oval Office. Bryan Cranston who played the blacklisted liberal writer Dalton Trumbo in Trumbo (2015), turns in one helluva performance as that down home and fiery Texan, President Lyndon Johnson. Damn he really does look like LBJ too. I had to look hard to even recognize the actor, that's how complete of a transformation it is. More that looking like the 36th President of the U.S.A, Bryan Cranston captures the persona of LBJ. Really it has to be seen to be believed.



What I loved about this movie was how it delved into the intimate details of the behind the scenes effort to get President Johnson's Civil Rights Act passed. Along the way we see the influence that Martin Luther King Jr. (Anthony Mackie) had on the process. Even though LBJ and MLK have the same goals, their efforts often run counter productive to getting the bill past. Balancing out the act is Melissa Leo who effectively plays the woman behind the President, Lady Bird Johnson. Another film maker might have made her a background character, but in this intelligent movie she has an impact on LBJ and figures promptly in the film.

If you love history or just want to see a good movie that's based in reality. Check out All The Way

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All the Way (2016)
Director: Jay Roach
Writers: Robert Schenkkan(teleplay), Robert Schenkkan(play)
Cast: Bryan Cranston, Anthony Mackie, Melissa Leo
Genre: Biography, Drama, History

Enjoyed your review and that picture you posted...Bryan Cranston's resemblance to LBJ is positively spooky.



Shadow of a Doubt (Hitchcock, 1943)

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Cast: Teresa Wright, Joseph Cotten, Macdonald Carey
Genre: Thriller Drama Noir

About: A young woman (Teresa Wright) who idolizes her Uncle Charlie, has a surprise when Uncle Charlie shows up in California to visit her family. During the visit she begins uncovering clues that points to her kindly uncle being a dangerous man.
Review: This is a strange film! Uncle Charlie was a bit too friendly with his niece. It was an odd relationship! At first, Charlie (Teresa Wright) seemed to have a crush on Uncle Charlie (Joseph Cotton). That actually gave this film a good kick start and the film starts off with a bang.

Into that dynamic comes the mom
Patricia Collinge, who also adores her brother, Charlie. I found Patricia Collinge to be a very bright spot, she had this certain quality when she spoke of her deep love and admiration for her brother. Her performance was a real thing of beauty.

Teresa Wright, was right! for this role. She's so normal, wholesome and down to earth, no wonder she was so popular in the 1940s...She is uniquely real. And that's at a time when many an actresses career was built on star power.



Same goes for Joseph Cotton...and accomplished actor who was never a movie star. Cotton cut his teeth with the great Orson Welles as one of the Mercury Theater players. Cotton starred in two of Welles' great films Citizen Kane and The Magnificent Ambersons. He too was one of the powerhouses in the 40s. I almost nominated another of his films.

Hitch rewards us with well developed and interesting characters, from the little precious, know-it-all girl, to the nerdy murder mystery fan, played by a very young Hume Cronyn in his first movie role.

I mean this movie is really fleshed out with great on location settings, which is something Hitch normally didn't do...and with naturalistic, enlivened dialogued by Thorton Wilder (Our Town) and Sally Benson another great screen writer.

I guess what I'm saying is, this is a good film!




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Enjoyed your review and that picture you posted...Bryan Cranston's resemblance to LBJ is positively spooky.
Even more so in other pics from the movie All The Way (2016)



'Lady Bird' Johnson
who's real name was Claudia Alta Johnson

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