I chose the theme this week to honour some of the people who passed away last year (thank you Wandering:)). This is a difficult one to do because how can one choose just 3.....not me:) now I already gave a salute to some of the greats who passed away last year which you can view here. I am choosing not to go with Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds as they must be saying, up in heaven, enough already! I do love them but I am going with these 3. If you want to see what the others have chosen head on over to Wandering Through The Shelves. So here are my 3 plus an additional 2:)
1. ALAN RICKMAN IN BLOW DRY-2001
I love ....LOVE this man especially his voice, his intelligence, his looks. I cried a river when I heard of his passing. Ok I didn't, but, man, was I saddened to hear of his death. He will always be Professor Snape from the Harry Potter series and the evil guy in Die Hard but I chose this British film that I just love. He plays a hair stylist who enters an absurd contest to win for best hairstyle. He is up against the mean but very funny Bill Nighy and must also deal with his ex wife and her new partner. It is a funny and touching movie with the wonkiest hair styles one will ever see. Other films to see him in would be Sense and Sensibility, Dogma, Galaxy Quest, Love Actually and Eye In The Sky.
2. GEORGE KENNEDY IN THE EIGER SANCTION-1975
He could play someone a bit nasty but he was the best as the lovable but tough sidekick who can bat up someone with just a stare but is just one big softie. In this film...he's not really a softie but still a great sidekick to Clint Eastwood's anti hero. Clint Eastwood play a retired assassin/art history prof/mountain climber blackmailed into going back into his assassin mode. This leads him to mountain climbing and he needs to get back into shape which brings George Kennedy to the scene as the man who can help him. He is his old friend and buddy and they work together to successfully do the job. I do enjoy this film quite a bit and if you want to see more films with George check out Cool Hand Luke, The Dirty Dozen, The Airport films, Earthquake, and the Naked Gun films.
3. GENE WILDER IN BLAZING SADDLES-1974
This film was given as one of the reasons that the Western took a nosedive. I don't know about this but it is nuts since it is a Mel Brooks film. Cleavon Little is made sheriff of a small town which is just a ruse since the evil guy, played by the great Harvey Korman, wants to destroy the town for a railroad. The townsfolk don't take well to the new sheriff since he is...African American. Everyone underestimates the new sheriff who has one ally....the Cisco Kid played with boozy delight by Gene Wilder. This is one crazy film that I love and laugh every time. Gene Wilder was great in this film and cemented his relationship and friendship with Mel Brooks. Gene was also great in Young Frankenstein, The Producers, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory and Silver Streak.
Plus 2 more....
4. GLORIA DEHAVEN IN SUMMERSTOCK-1950
Most people will probably not know who she is which is why I chose her because she was quite the star in her day even if she was mainly second lead to the bigger stars like Gene Kelly and Judy Garland. In Summer Stock she plays the actress sister to Judy who is trying to keep her farm afloat. Gloria brings the acting troupe along including her boyfriend Gene Kelly. You know the troupe will save the farm and sing a song or 5. Gloria is not at all happy with what is going on between her sister and her guy but thems the breaks! You can see the lovely Gloria in Summer Holiday, Scene of the Crime, 3 Little Words and Out To Sea as well. It's hard to find a scene with just her in it, ditto for below...
5. MICHELE MORGAN IN PASSAGE TO MARSEILLES-1944
This Grande Dame of the French Cinema was the first woman to win an award at first Cannes Film Festival and is considered an icon in cinema around the world. How sad that, in North America, no one knows her. When she escaped the Nazis, she briefly tried a Hollywood career but moved back to her home when the war was over. I wish I would see some of her great French works but the only one I saw, and that was many years ago, was this American film done with Humphrey Bogart. In fact she was almost going to play Ilse in Casablanca but they went with Ingrid Bergman instead. Funny, most of the actors from Casablanca appear in this film. It has a flashback within a flashback within a flashback. It tells the story of a man, wrongly accused of a crime and sent to Devil's Island, escapes with 4 other men. They are picked up by a freighter and end up fighting for the Free French. Ms. Morgan play's Bogie's wife. I remember enjoying this film and found it patriotic but can't recall more...I need to see it again. Ms. Morgan was also in Remorques, Higher and Higher, The Fallen idol and Les Grande Manoeuvres. Maybe I should have downloaded just a tribute to her??
What would be your picks?
You had me at Blazing Saddles. One of my most favorite movies.ReplyDelete
I can think of a lot of actors (sadly) but I'd point out Kenny Baker. Not because he was R2D2 in the Star Wars films, but for his role in the quirky film Time Bandits.
BLAZING Saddles is great and Kenny Baker is also a wonderful choice. I love Time Bandits!Delete
This theme is apropos given the bountiful harvest of fine actors and actresses reaped during 2016. You picked some great ones here and my favorite is George Kennedy. I burst out laughing when I watched that brief clip from The Eiger Sanction. I also fondly recall George smirking at the defiant rule-breaking antics of Lee Marvin and his Dirty Dozen. I must again rave about the voice-over narration on the trailer for Passage To Marseilles. I was a v/o announcer back in the day and I'd have given anything to have such a rich vocal instrument and such outstanding diction!
Thank you, dear friend BB!
I think it is wonderful that you did voice overs band cause it is much harder than one thinks. I'm glad you like my choices and love The Irtysh dozenDelete
Loving your choice of films today. Blazing Saddles is one of my all time favourites! I thought Alan Rickman was brilliant in Truly, Madly, Deeply. The Producers with Gene Wilder is another favourite.ReplyDelete
I spoke before about Truly, Madly, Deeply and really like this movie.Delete
Did I read that right? People blame Blazing Saddles for Westerns taking a nose dive? Uhh.. lolReplyDelete
I love Alan Rickman, but I've never seen Blow Dry, I'll have to check that one out.
You heard me correctly. You don't hear that now but when that movie came out and when a Western would come out there would be talk and the news would bring up BLAZING Saddles. I think you will enjoy Blow DryDelete
I also picked Alan Rickman (I went with Harry Potter though), and I almost chose Gene Wilder as well. I haven't seen these movies but Blazing Saddles sounds interesting.ReplyDelete
Lazing Saddles is hilarious! I think it's priceless.Delete
Lost a lot of good people last year! I would have gone with Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory with Gene Wilder. Definitely a classic for me!ReplyDelete
Willie Wonka is so good even with those Oompa LoompasDelete
Blow Dry is a sweet film. Watching it now it has such an amazing cast of up and comers for a small movie, of course now there's also the bittersweet tinge of both Rickman and Natasha Richardson being lost so early but that doesn't keep it from being an enjoyable picture.
Of course I see George Kennedy and I think about the Airport films but he made a wide range of movies. The Eiger Sanction is a good Eastwood actioner.
I've never been a big fan of Blazing Saddles fan, parts of it are funny but overall I never got why it's so beloved. But I loved Gene Wilder and most of his films with Mel Brooks are gems.
I'm sure you're not surprised that I know who Gloria DeHaven is, she was a second string leading lady but MGM did put her in some terrific movies. I particularly liked Two Girls and a Sailor and of course the one you chose, love the song she and Hans Conried sang "Memory Island" with that line about it being the place where yesterdreams come true.
I liked Passage to Marseilles well enough but it's hardly the best picture any of its stars made. Of her American output I found her most charming in Higher and Higher but compared to her French films like Port of Shadows or British ones like The Fallen Idol they aren't in the same league.
Some people don't care for BLAZING Saddles because it's Mel Brooks but I love it and find it so funny. I always think of Naked Gun and the Airport films but he did so many others so I chose one of those. I would never use Tarzan with Bo Derek..ughhh I did see that horrible mess. The only film I saw with Michele Morgan is the one I mentioned. It's not as good a film as it could have been but I have not seen her other films and would love to one day.Delete
Despite the soberness of the category I think it will be an interesting week because even if the same person is chosen more than once chances are it will be for various films. As happened with a couple of our choices. I also had trouble keeping to three but managed to hold to four favorites.
This Happy Feeling (1958)-Debbie Reynolds-When her boss makes a pass at a party in the Connecticut countryside New Yorker Janet Blake (Debbie) dashes into the rain just as Bill Tremaine (John Saxon) is passing and offers a ride to the subway. When she misconstrues a comment Bill makes as a come-on she jumps out and makes her way to the nearest house which belongs to retired star Preston “Mitch” Mitchell (Curt Jurgens) which he shares with his live-in housekeeper, the tippling Mrs. Early (a hysterical scene stealing Estelle Winwood). Stuck and soaked to the skin she stays the night in his guest room but when Mitch’s lady friend, the droll Nita Hollaway (a standout Alexis Smith) stops by in the morning she assumes the worst. Mitch sets her straight and hires Janet as his secretary beginning a charming romantic comedy with Debbie falling for Curt while John falls for her and she being pulled one way and another while Alexis makes caustic remarks from the sidelines. Little known Blake Edwards comedy is a hidden gem and a first-rate showcase for Debbie’s special magic.
Sense and Sensibility (1995)-Alan Rickman- When the Dashwood sisters Elinor and Marianne (Emma Thompson & Kate Winslet) and their mother are forced to move out of their home by their brother’s rotten wife they move to a cottage on their cousin’s estate in the English countryside. There Marianne becomes enamored of the dashing Willoughby (Greg Wise) while the more sedate Colonel Brandon (Alan Rickman) pines for her. Meanwhile Elinor yearns for the unavailable Edwards Ferrars (Hugh Grant). There’s so much more in this top flight Jane Austen adaptation directed by Ang Lee but this is a great example of Alan Rickman’s versatility. Best known as the suave but ruthlessly evil Hans Gruber in Die Hard he is the complete opposite here and makes both characters fully formed people.
Me, Natalie (1969)-Patty Duke-Natalie Miller (Patty) is an average looking Brooklyn teen who has a developed a complex from her mother always telling her she’ll be beautiful someday so don’t worry about being plain now. Her traditional father’s no help, he’s bribed a nerdy family friend (Bob Balaban) to marry her so she can be the housewife he thinks is all she should or can be. Encouraged by her jovial Uncle Harold (Martin Balsam) she breaks free. Renting an apartment from the dotty Miss Dennison (Elsa Lanchester) in Greenwich Village she embarks on a sometimes rocky journey of discovery where she finds that being comfortable with herself is more important than how she looks. Somewhat heavy with late 60’s trappings but aside from The Miracle Worker this is Patty Duke’s best big screen performance. Al Pacino makes his screen debut in a short scene at a dance.
Silver Streak (1976)-Gene Wilder-While traveling to his sister’s wedding on the Silver Streak train easy-going George Caldwell (Gene) falls smack dab into murder and intrigue when he becomes smitten with Hilly Burns (Jill Clayburgh) the secretary of seemingly innocuous Professor Schreiner. When he thinks he sees a dead body thrown from the train it’s the start of a wild ride both on and off the train during which he partners up with escapee Grover Muldoon (Richard Pryor) who gets him in and out of one crazy situation after another. Mix of comedy, slapstick, thriller and adventure was the first and best pairing of Wilder and Pryor.
Loving your picks because I have not seen the first 2nd one and it is now on my list to see. I love Silver Streak and need to see it again. Sense and Sensibility is such a gem and I love Alan Rickman in this. In fact I could not understand why she would go for the other guy because my pick would be RickmanDelete
Alan Rickman I'd go for Die Hard. Blazing Saddles was great indeed. As was Silver streak. Wilder made some great ones.ReplyDelete
Alan Rickman could play anything. GENE WILDER was great in Silver StreakDelete
Some excellent choices here. Bogart always delivers.ReplyDelete
Thanks and yes, Bogie does deliver.Delete
I'm familiar with all the actresses and actors on the list, but of the movies, I've only seen Blazing Saddles.ReplyDelete
It's a great movie but I could have chosen the new Star Trek films and Star Wars since both lost great actors from these series.Delete
I haven't seen any of these. I'm a bit familiar with Blazing Saddles because it's so famous.ReplyDelete
I'm surprised you haven't seen itDelete
Excellent choices, Birgit. I'm putting Blow Dry on my Netflix queue. Alan Rickman and Bill Nighy together. Whoo-hoo! The Husband does an Alan Rickman imitation whenever we watch a movie with him in it, because I like him a lot.ReplyDelete
I'd love to hear your hubby do an Alan Rickman impersonation. I hope you can see Blow Dry...very fun film.Delete
I'm glad you picked Gene Wilder, he was so funny. but I've never seen Blazing Saddles. I love love Young Frankenstien, my family is always saying 'PUT-THE-CANDLE-BACK!'ReplyDelete
My best friend and I always joke about Young Frankenstein especially that scene as well.Delete
Willy Dunne Wooters has HBO so I was able to watch their new documentary about Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds. I cried!ReplyDelete
Oh, I so want to see this film and plan on it.Delete
For me, Alan Rickman will always be Truly, Madly, Deeply. I hadn't heard of Blow Dry, and I love Bill Nighy too.ReplyDelete
Truly, Madly, Deeply is a gem and I love that film. I bet you will enjoy Blow Dry.Delete
OMGosh, soooo many deaths last year. Unbelievable. I loved Rickman too. No one could play a bad guy like he did:) He always managed to bring humor to his character.ReplyDelete
Have a great one, Brig.
There were a lot of deaths last year and many were not that old. I love RickmanDelete
A couple others have mentioned Truly, Madly, Deeply for Alan Rickman. So, I can skip that. I thought I hadn't seen Blazing Saddles, but I think I might have. At least bits of it, but I think I may have sat down to watch the whole thing once upon a time.ReplyDelete
It's always fun to revisit a movie:)Delete
I'm late getting here today, but in my world, it's still Thursday (grin). I loved Alan Rickman in Die Hard, but never saw Blow Dry. I saw Blazing Saddles as a child, but don't remember much about it. I am glad you featured Gene Wilder, because he was a very gifted actor.ReplyDelete
I'm familiar with George Kennedy, but never saw the movies you talked about. I guess I remember him from TV, instead of the movies.
I was impressed by your choice of topics this week. I am glad you spotlighted your choice of those who died last year, and was glad you didn't feature Fisher and Reynolds. I'm sure many did, though. Again, Rickman is my favorite of the group you chose.
Yes, George Kennedy was the Blue Knight! Actually many people spotlighted Alan Rickman this week.Delete
How I love Gene Wilder and Blazing Saddles. I never saw that Alan Rickman film, but it sounds awesome. I am certainly going to check it out.ReplyDelete
I would check out that film if you get a chanceDelete
I actually watched Passage to MARSEILLES as part of my History Disseration about feature films during the Second World War. Good film. I do wanna see Blow Dry. Nice picks.ReplyDelete
I have not seen the movie in years but it is the only one I have seen with Michele Morgan and she deserves recognition.Delete
Blow Dry: a thousand times, yes. He makes that movie!!!ReplyDelete
Glad you like my movie pickDelete
Great movie that I love!Delete
Last year was horrible in terms of celebrity losses (and a few other things). Alan Rickman was a shock to me, as well. I don't remember "Blow Dry", so thanks for the review. Must check that out, as Bill Nighy is also a favourite. Love Actually: # 1 favourite modern Christmas movie! ♥ George Kennedy and Gene Wilder will also be missed. I do remember Gloria DeHaven but not Michelle Morgan. Interesting about the Casablanca/Passage to Marseilles connection. Don't think I've seen this movie, but it does sound familiar. Speaking of movies with late greats, how about Prince in Purple Rain? ☺ The movie itself didn't thrill me, but the music...ReplyDelete
Alan Rickman was a shock to me too....so was Gene Wilder. I didn't choose Purple Rain because he did do just that one movie and it's not that good but the music is greatDelete
I'm a big Eiger Sanction and Blazing Saddles fan! I'd love to see Blow Dry too - it sounds so funny! So many celebrities died this past year and in Jan. So sad. :(ReplyDelete
Many died last year and we will have surprises this year as well. Blow Dry is greatDelete
Do you know I have never seen Blazing Saddles! I know, I can't believe it either! I'm going to do something about that.ReplyDelete
I think I've seen the Eiger Sanction but I can't remember it so will try to Netflix it if available. I love those 70s movies.
Thanks for showcasing these lesser known actors. They will always live on in their works...
Michele at Angels Bark
I love BLAZING Saddles but it is politically incorrect so hope that you can look past that. I am a huge Mel Brooks fan and find this film one of the best. I hope you can find these films on Netflix.Delete
Alan Rickman is love.ReplyDelete
He is..I agreeDelete
Birgit, I didn't know Alan Rickman died. He was great in Die Hard. I'm not sure we ever saw him in anything else. There are more celebrities to die last year than I realized, just like Gene Wilder which I read about on your blog. Thanks for keeping me informed. I don't recall Glria DeHaven but she was a real beauty. Also, I don't know Michele Morgan. That's too bad she moved back to Europe after the war, though. Showbiz is hard to get established in especially when there are bigger names out there and she had a lot of competition. The Eiger Sanction and Blazin' Saddles are two great movies! Thanks for sharing your picks. I can't think of any to add today. I reckon I need another cup of coffee. :)ReplyDelete
Oh wow...I thought everyone knew about Alan Rickman because he was such a loss. Michele Morgan missed her homeland and her career here wasn't taking off so I get why she wanted to go home.Delete
I'm with you about Alan Rickman. I never missed seeing one of his films and I'm sad that I won't have any new ones to look forward to.ReplyDelete
Yes, so true but I can at least, watch films I have not seen him in.Delete
Wonderful choices! I'll admit I hadn't heard of the last 2, but the first 3 I'm all about, and with George Kennedy, last year was the first time I'd actually seen his roles outside of The Naked Gun. He was fantastic in Cool Hand Luke and The Dirty Dozen (which are both great films, of course).ReplyDelete
Those last 2 films are excellent...love them both especially the Dirty DozenDelete
George Kennedy was another class act. What movie he stood out for me in was The Dirty Dozen:)ReplyDelete
I hope you get to feeling better, my friend.
The Dirty Dozen is great!Delete
So many greats died last year. It's heartbreaking. I'm happy to see Alan Rickman on your list.ReplyDelete
It is sad about all of these greatsDelete
I haven't seen any of these. I'm so ashamed!ReplyDelete
I loved Carrie Fisher in When Harry Met Sally.
She was great in that movie. Actually I wanted to see more of her and less Meg Ryan:)Delete
While not only a great comedic actor, Gene Wilder came across as a genuinely nice guy.ReplyDelete
How are you feeling today, my friend?
He was great in acting and writing and I also heard he was very nice and sweetly humble. My pain is still tough to deal with and I am so very tired from it.Delete
Well, first of all, before I forget, thank you so much for stopping by Marmelade Gypsy from Sandra's blog.ReplyDelete
This is such a fun post! Five of those who died last year? Well, I'm going with Debbie because "Singing in the Rain" is one of my favorites! Then Zsa Zsa Gabor, a strip club owner in Orson Welles' Touch of Evil, Ken Howard, a bemused Thomas Jefferson in 1776, and two of your favorites, Gene Wilder (Young Frankenstein) and Alan Rickman -- what to choose here? Truly, Madly, Deeply or Love Actually? Oh, love them all!
I love Singing in the Rain! The darlink :) Zsa Zsa who was fun to see in this film. I have not seen Ken Howard in this film but have seen the other 2 and love Alan Rickman in TMDDelete
We just lost another icon today.ReplyDelete
I know! Poor Mary Tyler Moore. She is the 2nd one to have passed away from her iconic TV show because, aside from Ted Knight, everyone else is alive.Delete
I love Alan Rickman and need to see Blow Dry!ReplyDelete
I have seen Blazing Saddles (I know- amazing). I was lucky enough to hear Wilder speak almost 10 years ago at a writing conference. Amazing!
Thanks for sharing.
Oh, wow... I only knew Alan Rickman and Gene Wilder of this list! But the videos are great, and you've given me a lot to look for :) Thanks, Birgit!ReplyDelete
Guilie @ Quiet Laughter
Alan Rickman...Blow Dry...I think I've actually seen it but can't remember a thing. And yes his voice, it was so distinctive. I wonder if he ever did audiobooks. I would love to listen to a book read by him.ReplyDelete