Thursday, June 20, 2019

Thursday Movie Picks-Period Drama


This is a big theme for this week and my head couldn’t figure out which way to go. This can be an endless theme and one can pick any era and pick any decade films have been made or even go by one film star. I decided to choose the latter and went with a film star whom I greatly admire not only for his acting ability but because he had to hide the fact that he was gay since he could have been jailed or even killed back in the day never mind ruining his career. It will be interesting what everyone will choose this week. Check out Wandering Through The Shelves to find out what everyone has picked. Here are my 3...

1.  THE PRIVATE LIFE OF HENRY VIII-1933


Charles Laughton plays the title role of this nasty, narcissistic, hedonistic king who goes through many wives all while wishing for a male heir. Laughton brings this King to life and you despise him but you end up feeling bad for him mainly due to Laughton’s superb acting. It starts off with Ann Boleyn, in a brief but memorable role played by Merle Oberon, and it continues through all his marriages. The highlight is his brief marriage with Anne of Cleves played by his real life wife Elsa Lanchester. They were comedic gold in their scenes together which brought levity to this drama. On an off note, by this time, they were soul mates but not bed mates since she caught him on the couch with one of his male friends. She told him she loved him but to get rid of the couch. They remained together, strong in each other’s support of one another until Laughton’s death. The above scene became so famous that Laughton was often given chicken, sans utensils, when he went out for dinner:)

2. LES MISERABLES-1935


I have seen the musical and I do like it and am not so negative about Russell Crowe’s singing as many are( any hear Ryan Gosling sing...yikes!) but the film that is better is this version even though there are some big changes to the book. For example, they couldn’t show Fantine as a whore at this time due to the censorship laws, but it does not diminish the strength of this film. Frederic March plays Jean Valjean as the doomed man who goes to jail after stealing a loaf of bread for his daughter. After he is exonerated, Javert, played by Charles Laughton is hard on his tracks and will not give in to the fact that Valjean is a good man no matter what. This relentless cop will do anything to bring Valjean back to prison. This film is well acted and is a must see for the acting chops of March but, especially, Charles Laughton.

3. REMBRANDT-1936


Charles Laughton plays the famous artist with such compassion and eloquence that his performance moved me to tears. It starts off  with Rembrandt at the height of his fame and richness. He was happily married and was admired until his beloved Saskia dies. He becomes depressed, ends up with a bitch who mistreats him before he begins changing the way he views the world and his painting. He loses everything but gains the hand of his second "wife" whom he adores (played by Elsa Lanchester). Another brilliant performance by this actor who can convey so much just from a glance. If you have never seen any of his films, I highly recommend seeing some

Which period drama would you choose?

58 comments:

  1. I don't know any of these. Is that a bad thing? I should check them out though as they look interesting. Happy Thursday! Hugs-Erika

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. These films are excellent and, if you love art, check out Rembrandt

      Delete
    2. i am ERIC BRUNT by name. Greetings to every one that is reading this testimony. I have been rejected by my wife after three(3) years of marriage just because another Man had a spell on her and she left me and the kid to suffer. one day when i was reading through the web, i saw a post on how this spell caster on this address AKHERETEMPLE@gmail.com have help a woman to get back her husband and i gave him a reply to his address and he told me that a man had a spell on my wife and he told me that he will help me and after 3 days that i will have my wife back. i believed him and today i am glad to let you all know that this spell caster have the power to bring lovers back. because i am now happy with my wife. Thanks for helping me Dr Akhere contact him on email: AKHERETEMPLE@gmail.com
      or
      call/whatsapp:+2349057261346










      i am ERIC BRUNT by name. Greetings to every one that is reading this testimony. I have been rejected by my wife after three(3) years of marriage just because another Man had a spell on her and she left me and the kid to suffer. one day when i was reading through the web, i saw a post on how this spell caster on this address AKHERETEMPLE@gmail.com have help a woman to get back her husband and i gave him a reply to his address and he told me that a man had a spell on my wife and he told me that he will help me and after 3 days that i will have my wife back. i believed him and today i am glad to let you all know that this spell caster have the power to bring lovers back. because i am now happy with my wife. Thanks for helping me Dr Akhere contact him on email: AKHERETEMPLE@gmail.com
      or
      call/whatsapp:+2349057261346

      Delete
  2. Hi, Birgit!

    I enjoyed your Charles Laughton triple play, dear friend, and two of the three films also featured his wife Elsa Lanchester. I dare say there aren't very many wives who would look the other way and stay married after catching hubby on a couch with another man. Period dramas are not my strong suit, and I have not seen any of these films. As you know I best remember Laughton as The Hunchback Quasimodo. Mrs. Shady is an artist who loves the works of the Dutch masters. I intend to tell her about this mid 30s Rembrandt film.

    Thank you, dear friend BB, and enjoy the rest of your week!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I almost chose Hunchback of Notre Dame because Laughton was excellent in that film. Rembrandt is my favourite of the 3 so, yes, tell Mrs. Shady to watch it as it’s excellent. Yes, Elsa and Charles shared a love of gardening, art and books. They loved each other deeply but she had no idea he was homosexual until she caught him.

      Delete
  3. I haven't seen any of these, nor was I familiar with Charles Laughton. His story sounds more fascinating than the films to be honest. Though I am curious about this version of Les Mis.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh Wow! Laughton has been a big influence on actors like Daniel day Lewis for example. His story is quite good and he hated his looks and compared his face to an elephant's behind. He directed Night of the Hunter and when that film bombed at the box office, he was so hurt he never directed another film. Critics hail this film as one of the best ever.

      Delete
  4. Night of the Hunter is one of those I've been planning to watch for years but haven't gotten around to. Had no idea he was the director. I've got some movies to watch.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think you will like this dark fairy tale..too bad he didn’t make more

      Delete
  5. Oh I really need to see Laughton's Rembrandt. I have a real soft spot for biopics of classic artists.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Same here and this is a very good bio of the artist

      Delete
  6. A theme within the theme! With something this vast you almost have to do one and I love yours. Laughton really is one of the greats, able to do both drama and comedy with equal ease.

    Three very fine film.

    I can NOT abide the musical version of Les Miz in any incarnation but this telling of the novel blessedly sans the dreadful music is aces.

    Rembrandt is somewhat prosaic but thanks to Laughton's skill still entertaining.

    But Private Life of Henry VIII is the best of the three. All the women playing the wives are quite good, Elsa is the best but I adore Binnie Barnes, however it's Laughton's centerpiece performance that makes the film what it is. He deserved the Oscar he won for it.

    I hadn't planned it as such but I guess I also have a theme within the theme since all mine are based on works of literature.

    A Room with a View (1985)-In the early years of the 20th century English lass Lucy Honeychurch (Helena Bonham-Carter) is making a tour of Italy with her spinster cousin Charlotte (Maggie Smith). At a pensione in Florence, the pair become acquainted with the expansive Mr. Emerson (Denholm Elliott) and his free-spirited son George (Julian Sands). When Charlotte intuits that Lucy is too intrigued by George they depart back to England where Lucy ponders settling down with the wealthy, staid Cecil Vyse (Daniel Day-Lewis). Unexpectedly George reappears in her life and Lucy must decide between a sensible marriage with Cecil or the riskier true love of George. Lush, brilliantly acted comic drama from Merchant/Ivory based on an E.M. Forster novel.

    Maurice (1987)-Another Merchant/Ivory adaptation of an E.M. Forster novel but one that was only able to be published posthumously because of the controversial subject matter. In 1909, Maurice Hall (James Wilby) enters Cambridge, where he befriends wealthy Clive Durham (a very young Hugh Grant). Clive confesses he is sexually attracted to Maurice, who realizes he is a homosexual when he begins to return Clive's feelings. The two embark on an intense but chaste affair to avoid tarnishing Clive's reputation, but eventually the relationship ends, and Clive marries Anne (Phoebe Nicholls). While visiting Clive, Maurice is drawn toward his friend's servant, Alec Scudder (Rupert Graves) and a more meaningful relationship looms for the two. Meticulously made with incisive work by the three leading men.

    Mansfield Park (1999)-In 1808 poor relation Fanny Price (Frances O'Connor) comes to live with wealthy uncle Sir Thomas (Harold Pinter), his haughty wife Lady Bertram (Lindsay Duncan) and their four children, at their country mansion-Mansfield Park-where she'll be brought up for a proper introduction to society. Indifferently treated by her relatives, except for her cousin Edmund (Jonny Lee Miller) Fanny's life is thrown into disarray with the arrival of worldly Mary Crawford (Embeth Davidtz) with whom Edmund becomes smitten and her brother Henry (Alessandro Nivola). Cunning, duplicitous and sly they cause endless complications for the entire household until a fateful event comes to pass. Solid adaptation of one of Jane Austen’s lesser known works.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The one I have seen is Room With a View which I truly enjoyed but I haven’t seen the other 2. They are marked down to see. I need to see many more films out there..in the dark...I’m using my best Norma Desmond voice. I didn’t mind the musical at all but it pales next to the version I mentioned here.

      Delete
  7. Les Mis.
    www.rsrue.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  8. Not seen any of these. But I have seen 2 out of 3 of Joel’s comment above!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You did better than me with Joel’s Picks..I’ve only seen one

      Delete
  9. He really looks like the fat old Tudor himself.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Laughton was a tremendous actor, and he was one of those that could do drama and comedy. He was in a movie called "If I Had A Million" where he received a check for $1 million while he was at work, and he takes a very long walk to his boss's office and blows a raspberry at him. "Ruggles of Red Gap," where he recites Lincoln's Gettysburg Address, is one of the best scenes in the movies, and of course there's his iconic role as Captain Bligh in "Mutiny on the Bounty." Just a great actor.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He is excellent and I wish more would know about him. His speech in Ruggles is perfection and brought the people on the set to tears

      Delete
  11. The first one I've seen, but not the other two. Charles Laughton was lucky that Elsa stuck by him. I remember reading that story years ago. When it comes to period dramas, my preference is more along ancient history lines. Spartacus, for example, or to give a more modern example (speaking of Russell Crowe; he has a decent singing voice and a band), Gladiator. Have a good weekend!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Charles Laughton was in Spartacus as well. Gladiator is an excellent movie. I know Crowe has his own band.

      Delete
  12. I blush to admit I haven't seen any of these, but they sound really well done.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They are and maybe one day you will see them

      Delete
  13. I haven't seen any of these, or after a quick IMDb looked up - apparently any films of Charles Laughton's at all. Whoops.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh wow! You need to put a couple of his on your blind spot series

      Delete
  14. I've only seen the first film and I love Charles Laughton as an actor, and especially as The Hunchback of Notre Dame, he was brilliant, Kate x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He was brilliant in Hunchback...another virtuoso performance

      Delete
  15. I haven't seen any of these but I've seen the Russell Crowe's version of Les Miserables and I love it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is a good movie and I like it but it is not the best in my opinion although I love Hugh Jackman

      Delete
  16. Birgit,

    Thanks for the movie suggestions. I'm not sure if these dramas would hold my attention. This is a tricky genre for me. One that can easily bore or grip me. It just depends. Thanks for stopping in for a visit. I hope you have a good weekend, my friend!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hmmm....I may say to see his Henry the 8th if I chose any just from his great acting and his comedic timing with Elsa as Anne Of Cleves

      Delete
  17. Haven't seen any of these but just finished watching The Counterfeit Traitor. Thanks for mentioning it last week. I had never heard of it before.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. How did you like it? I hope you found the film as good as I do.

      Delete
    2. Loved it and surprised I'd never heard about it. But boy, did I want to slap that little Nazi kid.

      Delete
  18. Rembrandt I remember watching with my uncle. Period movies can be good, but I find many drag.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They can so have to watch and make notes but some can surely be a slog.

      Delete
  19. This would be a hard theme. I remember an actor once talking about a part she was playing and how it was a period piece and wasn't it weird. It was an era from her lifetime, but it was no longer the current era, so it was strange. Now, if only I could recall which actor and which movie this was from...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, that would be interesting to learn which one she was talking about

      Delete
  20. I've seen your first two but not the last one. There are so many films from which to choose! I enjoy films that take place during the Civil War like Gone with the Wind as well as so many great ones about WWII.

    Film noir films are a category that I watch a lot. That period from the forties through the fifties draws me as well. Like the film Breaking Point(1950). It was interesting to see that there was still a problem with illegal immigration even back then and some of the California towns look similar to what they do now. I live vicariously in the 50's watching those old black and white films.


    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are right, there are so many that I had no idea which way to turn. I could come up with 3 films each week just in this category.

      Delete
  21. Yeah, Charles Laughton was a great actor. LES MISERABLES was a good one. I loved him in 'Ruggles Of Red Gap' - such an unknown little gem of a movie. (Kudos to John for knowing it and mentioning it.)

    Period Dramas? Well, 'The Ten Commandments' would be on my list somewhere, as well as 'Amadeus'.

    ~ D-FensDogG
    STMcC Presents BATTLE OF THE BANDS

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ruggles is excellent and his speech resonates today just like back then. The Ten Commandments is a good one and love Amadeus...a gem that most forget today

      Delete
  22. Playing catch-up is a bit difficult, especially when I was gone for two days, only to come home to an unstable internet. I've never heard of any of these films, but I have heard of Charles Laughton. Never saw any of his films, though. Aren't we glad life has gotten better since the 30s and censorship is mostly a thing of the past?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank goodness that censorship is,mostly, a thing of the past in our neck of the woods. My mom was strongly against censorship since she lived under it

      Delete
  23. Where do you get access to these old movies. Think I watch more if I knew where to get them.
    R

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Many I saw years ago when the great Elwy Yost had his Saturday Night at the Movies on TVO..a Canadian PBS. I have a lot, I mean, a lot of DVD’s plus I have Silver Screen on my cable

      Delete
  24. Hi Birgit - I didn't know any of these ... wonderful selections - and yes Charles Laughton was an actor who excelled at his passion. Thanks for showing us - Hilary

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks and he is so good in all his films

      Delete
  25. Fascinating info on Laughton.
    Hope you enjoyed the Solstice.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He is an interesting character who was very sensitive, thought of his wife as his soul mate even though they stopped anything romantic decades before and compared his face to an elephant’s behind

      Delete
  26. I haven't even seen the remake of Les Miserables. I've been meaning to, but... *hangs head in shame*

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, maybe one day you will. I like the movie

      Delete
  27. I do not think I have seen any of these exact movies- though I have seen versions of some of them. Interesting picks! Thanks for sharing!
    ~Jess

    ReplyDelete
  28. I haven't seen any of your picks, not much for older films.
    That said I have seen a couple of the new adaptations of Les Miserables including the feature musical. I am one of those that think Russell Crowe was just miscast. That role had big songs and he just could not sing it.

    ReplyDelete
  29. i am ERIC BRUNT by name. Greetings to every one that is reading this testimony. I have been rejected by my wife after three(3) years of marriage just because another Man had a spell on her and she left me and the kid to suffer. one day when i was reading through the web, i saw a post on how this spell caster on this address AKHERETEMPLE@gmail.com have help a woman to get back her husband and i gave him a reply to his address and he told me that a man had a spell on my wife and he told me that he will help me and after 3 days that i will have my wife back. i believed him and today i am glad to let you all know that this spell caster have the power to bring lovers back. because i am now happy with my wife. Thanks for helping me Dr Akhere contact him on email: AKHERETEMPLE@gmail.com
    or
    call/whatsapp:+2349057261346










    i am ERIC BRUNT by name. Greetings to every one that is reading this testimony. I have been rejected by my wife after three(3) years of marriage just because another Man had a spell on her and she left me and the kid to suffer. one day when i was reading through the web, i saw a post on how this spell caster on this address AKHERETEMPLE@gmail.com have help a woman to get back her husband and i gave him a reply to his address and he told me that a man had a spell on my wife and he told me that he will help me and after 3 days that i will have my wife back. i believed him and today i am glad to let you all know that this spell caster have the power to bring lovers back. because i am now happy with my wife. Thanks for helping me Dr Akhere contact him on email: AKHERETEMPLE@gmail.com
    or
    call/whatsapp:+2349057261346

    ReplyDelete