This week it is story-lines that intersect. I expect Crash to be popular as well as Love, Actually but I went the oldie route (big surprise). Head on over to Wandering Through The Shelves to check out what the others have chosen.
1. GRAND HOTEL-1932
An oldie but a fun one. This old man (Lewis Stone) is the head guy over at the Grand Hotel in Berlin who claims nothing ever happens...people come and people go. That might be true until this bunch arrives. You have the suave, debonair Baron played by (hiccup) John Barrymore. Lionel Barrymore is a poor older man who is dying. Wallace Beery is an A-Hole rich brute with his "secretary" played by the up and coming Joan Crawford(who steals the show) and, wait for it, Garbo as a Russian Prima Ballerina-hahahahaaa. She is about as dainty as a Clydesdale horse going through a crystal store. All these people have stories to share and love to give but how will they all end up? It is one of the first talking all star films.
2. DINNER AT EIGHT-1933
This has the best double take ever done in my opinion and it is all Marie Dressler. Again this has a huge array of big name stars, some that were in Grand Hotel a year earlier. A rich family, headed by Lionel Barrymore and his wife, played by Billie Burke(Glenda the Good Witch fame), plan to have a dinner party. Actually it is more his wife's idea since the richest English couple(think Downton Abbey style) have agreed to attend her dinner. The daffy wife wants to have all the big people there from a Countess who is a famed actress(Marie Dressler) to a once famous silent film star who is now a drunk(any guess??) ...John Barrymore. The bad boy is, once again, Wallace Beery who is married to the white on white, Jean Harlow. This actress was famous for her platinum hair(not just on her head). Sadly she died in 1937 at the age of 26. This is a another fun film to watch that I like even better than Grand Hotel
3. IF IT'S TUESDAY, THIS MUST BE BELGIUM-1969
I love this movie....I mean I really love it. First it has the beautiful scenery of Europe that you experience with them as they travel through all the countries. Second, I love the cast because they are not huge names but mainly are a cast of characters that are usually supporting characters in other movies or even TV Shows(Norman Fell from three's Company). It starts off in London where a young man who loves the fun life and women, meets his cast of American tourists since he's a tour director. I have a friend who does this but works in BC and is the tour director for Banff, Jasper and Lake Louise(you have the right to curse him). This American lot is headed by the wonderful Suzanne Pleshette (Bob Newhart Show) whom the tour director(played by Ian McShane) really wants to get to know. There is a married couple with their teenage daughter who would rather be home(why do all teens rather be home than touring Europe..I never got that). A man who wants to meet his Italian family he never knew and another who wants to retrace is WW2 days. There is even a creepy man who takes something from each hotel. Donovan is one of many guest cameos who sings the title song. I picked up a tour guide a couple of years back and found that the itinerary has not changed in all these years! They still check out the cheese in Holland(or is it Belgium??) and one stills sees tours headed by some middle aged nut lady holding an umbrella.
I have to add this and, don't worry, even though it is at the end, it gives nothing away...
I've seen and enjoyed all three. When my friend and I returned from our tour of Europe in 1969, we went to see IITTMB Belgium. Loved it. All good choices.ReplyDelete
Glad you saw all three especially Belgium. Not too many people have seen thisDelete
Hi, dear Birgit!ReplyDelete
I imagine to most post-millennials, an "old movie" is one released before 2000. I often wonder how many young people ever heard of a Barrymore other than Drew. I am old enough to remember Lionel, Ethel and John, along with Greta Garbo, Joan Crawford, Lewis Stone (from the Andy Hardy series), Marie Dressler, Wallace Beery, Jean Harlow and Billie Burke. My first impression of Norman Fell was in his small role in The Graduate as the landlord who asked Dustin Hoffman if he is one of those outside agitators. :) That film clip you posted does resemble a scene from Downton Abbey and reminds me of one the Dowager Violet Crawley's zingers. :)
Thanks, dear Birgit!
I know what you mean because I have run into many 20 somethings who thought, when I mentioned an old movie, they went to the 1990's...hahahahaaaa. There are some, though, that do know which I am happy to see.Delete
I haven't seen any of these. The last sound sounds the most interesting to me.ReplyDelete
And No, Shady. We millennials don't think "old movies" are ones released before 2000, come on.
Thank you for your comment. It is a pleasure to meet a millennial who shares my interest in films released in the early and mid 20th century. I know there are some, probably many others like you. That's why I was careful to use the words "most" and "POST-millennials" which refers to Generation Z, defined as people with birth years ranging from the late 1990s to present. "Millennials" are Generation Y people who reached young adulthood around 2000. Given that clarification, I believe my statement was fair and accurate. If your interest in the 20th century extends to music of the 1950s through 90s, then I invite you to come follow me at SDMM and I will reciprocate by following your film appreciation blog. I already checked your A to Z list of favorites and several of them match mine. Thank you, Brittani!
I agree with Shady that he meant most but not all and neve stereo-typing which I know you know:).....you know? It is so nice to meet fellow lovers of film who do not think that Fast & Furious is the next best thing to sliced bread. Many truly appreciate and love the classic films of that bygone era. I hope you will check out Shady's blog because he likes all forms of music. I feel like an ole ruddy daddy. I hope you get a chance to see one of the films I chose:)Delete
PS; I was just flipping through your contact list ( actually it came up on it's own)and it sad we have one in common:::Peter Scott!!He's a good looking guy from London. Well, he started chatting and in 24 hours wanted 700 dollars from me! Three weeks later, under the name of Daniel Morgan, he tried again....same picture on the face! I told him he should keep files to keep his scams straight! Just thought you should know-----ReplyDelete
I have no clue who this guy is. He is in my list somehow??Delete
Never seen any of those at my sea, heck never even heard of them haha 3rd sounds like one for me to see indeed though.ReplyDelete
I think you would get a kick out of the last one especially if you pick up a travel brochure to EuropeDelete
I'm glad you used the clip about "I was reading a book the other day." I think that's one of the funniest moments ever in a movie. I like Grand Hotel. I probably don't have the line exactly right, but I think it's "People come, and people go, and nothing ever changes." I haven't seen the third movie.ReplyDelete
It is a great clip which works for all the authors out there. I think you would get a kick out of the last film if you can find it.Delete
Not seen any of them this week. Enjoyed the clip though.ReplyDelete
Maybe, one day, you may see one of them. The clip is pricelessDelete
Dressler gets the last quip in Dinner at 8 but I think Harlow walks off with the film. Quite an achievement considering the rest of the cast but she was such a unique personality. John Barrymore is probably runner-up with a role slanted in the completely opposite direction from Jean's. That I think is the power of the film, its such a strong mix of laughter and pathos.ReplyDelete
So happy to see If It's Tuesday, It Must Be Belgium show up!! What an underknown delight it is. I adore Suzanne Pleshette, a talented performer who I think suffered somewhat from being similar to Anne Bancroft. The whole movie is light and fluffy but goes down easy.
We match on your other pick!! Grand Hotel is a fascinating microcosm.
This week's theme gave me momentary pause because a great many films have stories that intermingle but after thinking about it for a bit I went with films whose main idea was multi-focused.
Grand Hotel (1932)-“Grand Hotel...always the same. People come, people go. Nothing ever happens.” So it seems to the desk clerk of the title building but this tells the tale of many intermingling stories. Creaks a little with age but contains some really fine performances, Joan Crawford’s best early work, the Barrymore brothers, but also some less distinguished ones, Garbo in particular seems stiff in many scenes. The genesis of the all-star picture this holds the distinction of being the only Best Picture winner to do so on a sole nomination.
Vantage Point (2008)-The various stories related to an attempted assassination are told from numerous vantage points. Over plotted but still engrossing film, some story threads are better realized than others. Strong cast includes Sigourney Weaver, Dennis Quaid, Forest Whitaker and Édgar Ramírez.
Detective Story (1951)-One day in the life of the detective squad of the 21st Precinct. The intersecting story of the various people who pass through their doors includes: a sweet but dotty old lady; an embezzler and his girl; a pair of blustering burglars and a naive shoplifter (Lee Grant). One of the officers, Detective Jim McLeod (Kirk Douglas) is a tough cynical man whose obsessive pursuit of an abortionist could lead to personal disaster. Both Grant and Eleanor Parker as McLeod’s wife scored Oscar nominations.
We match! Glad you like my picks and yes, Harlow was great in that movie. I am glad you saw Belgium also and isn't it funny that the tours really haven't changed all that much. Love your picks. Vantage point is quite unique in how everyone viewed the same scene differently. Detective Story is an under-rated gem that I would love to view again. Wonder what happened to Fisti...I am worried.Delete
Haven't seen any of these. I need to check out Grand Hotel. And goodness no, I hope Crash is not popular today.ReplyDelete
Crash was not popular. Hope you get to see one of these gemsDelete
I haven't seen any of those, but I've heard of all of them. I'm not sure why, but those films with large casts and intersecting stories rub me the wrong way. Not my favorite.ReplyDelete
That's interesting that you don't like the big cast things. Maybe you feel like it is something being told to like because many stars are in one movie.Delete
...the SHADE you are throwing at John Barrymore! I LOVE IT! I could watch that Marie Dressler double take a million times and never tire of it. I also have to laugh at Garbo as a prima ballerina - you are SO right about her total lack of grace in Grand Hotel.ReplyDelete
John Barrymore is basically playing himself. Garbo is anything but a ballerinaDelete
If It's Tuesday This Must Be Belgium is a phrase I hear often among travelers who are exposed to too much too quickly.ReplyDelete
You are so right about thatDelete
I haven't seen any of these. I'm feeling particularly devoid of "culture" this week. I can't even think of any intersecting movies that you didn't mention.ReplyDelete
Hahahahaa, well no worries because you can always watch one of these or just any ole movie:)Delete
Happy St. Patrick's Day! I've nominated you for a Music & Words Award over on the Flipside. Tag - you're it!ReplyDelete
Oh wow ok I will make this up over the weekend. Thank you so very muchDelete
Nashville and Short Cuts qualify for this, I'm guessing. Pulp Fiction?ReplyDelete
I might have to check out that Pleshette movie.
Pulp Fiction definitely works. I haven't seen the other two but I have wanted to see Nashville for years!Delete
Birgit, you are one of the few people I know who remembers and loves If it's Tuesday, It Must be Belgium. I got a big laugh over the creepy guy's collection, especially when it was discovered. Ah, to see this movie again. I put it in our Netflix queue ages ago. It still hasn't moved out "Unavailable".ReplyDelete
Isn't it a great movie? There are some great scenes in this movie. I love the one where they are visiting the war memorial and the one guy is talking about his experiences and you hear almost. The same thing, but in German, from a German tourist.Delete
Great post. Love the phrase "as dainty as a Clydesdale horse going through a crystal store"!ReplyDelete
Thank you..yes, well, if you see her walk throughout the film, you will see that I am not that far off.Delete
It's rare that I don't know any of the movies you list but this time I don't know any. Usually I'll know at least one from my dad because he was a huge movie buff. He loved the oldies so as a result I know quite a few of them but this week you introduced me to all of them :)ReplyDelete
Oh wow! That is cool that I stumped you:) Hope you see at least one of them.Delete
I saw If It's Tuesday many many years ago when I was 12 or 13 and LOVED it then and still do. But I was more fascinated by the way the Americans in the movie behaved! LOL. Have a great weekend, Birgit! :)ReplyDelete
You are you are so right about this because it isn't far off. When I have been in Europe, I can usually spot the Americans....the stereotype anyway.Delete
I haven't seen any of these, but they sound good. Crash wasn't a popular pick but Love Actually is everywhere!ReplyDelete
I am surprised that Crash was not picked more but that is a ok. These films are good and hope you seen one of them this year.Delete
I have heard of all of these, but haven't seen any of them. Lots of movies to watch for sure! I have seen Crash and Love Actually, which you mentioned that other people might spotlight. :)ReplyDelete
These films I picked are good, I think. Love, actually is such a good film. Crash is good but not great...in my little ole opinion.Delete
I really need to see Grand Hotel.ReplyDelete
I really like this film and find it a hootDelete
All three of those are among my favourites too! Never thought I'd see "If This is Tuesday.." on somebody else's list. Nice that we have it in common, Birgit. ☺ Love Ian McShane and Suzanne Pleshette.ReplyDelete
Isn't that a fun movie. I love Belgium and want to find a dad of t. Glad you know all three.Delete
I'm fairly certain I saw 'GRAND HOTEL' but it was so long ago and I think I was drunk that year.
Haven't seen 'DINNER AT EIGHT' but I'm sure I'd like it because, you know, ANYTHING with Lionel Barrymore or Wallace Beery in it! (Beery was one of my Dad's favorites. As was W.C. Fields. You can see the "type" he liked, eh? Ha!)
And I must have seen 'IF IT'S TUESDAY...', unless there's another movie with a very similar title. Is there something else that's like "If It's ____, This Must Be ____"? Because for some reason the "Belgium" part doesn't seem to be what I remember. But that was a long time ago, and I was drunk THAT year, too.
Mmmmm... Suzanne Pleshette. I'll take two, please. One for here and one "to go".
'Loyal American Underground'
I have had a year. Or 3 that I ant recall if I saw that movie or knew what month it was...they were fun days. I think you need to watch Belgium again because Suzanne is in a man's shirt in one scene...very sexy.Delete
I haven't seen any of these but they all look amazing! I'm on the hunt for Grand Hotel!ReplyDelete
It's a fun movie to watch for sure ..so are the others.Delete
I haven't seen any of the oldies, but Crash would have been my go-to for intersecting stories. 21 Grams was also a great (but depressing) film for intersecting storylines, and on the light, flip side, Valentine's Day could be considered this type of film as well. Works for me, anyway!ReplyDelete
21 Grams would be good and someone else did pick Valentine's Day so glad this was ago on one for you choose a movie you haven't seen:)Delete
Oh my, I know these are all classic oldies, but I don't think I've seen a single one of those. Our TCM channel airs these from time to time, but I have never sat down to watch. I should! Thanks for reminding me! TFS & Have a wonderful weekReplyDelete
Oh how I wish I had TCM! I would love that channel. Have a great week aheadDelete