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On 3/15/2021 at 11:12 PM, voiceover said:

As another Kay Francis evening on TCM gave way to another  predawn dabbing-out of the champagne stains from my silk dressing gown, I mused how people think of her (if they think of her at all) as the Elegant Refined Lady of pre-code cinema. These are people who never witnessed that finger-snapping, door-banging sequence between Kay & Herbert Marshall during Trouble in Paradise.  Nothing blatant but I always need a cig after.

Puts me in mind of the moment in Downstairs where John Gilbert bends over and lets the elderly cook have a good smack at his flour-dusted thighs.   Another 1932 film where you are *pretty sure* no one screws onscreen, but you wouldn't bet your life on it.

 

@Lady Whistleup: I recommend Ava Gardner: The Secret Conversations by Peter Evans & Ava Gardner.  It's mostly a bunch of drunken late-night phone call confessionals -- small wonder she  later forbade him finish, so he waited to publish until after she died.  It's <eyes-wide-open emoji>.

 

Kay Francis is a personal favorite of mine, but I especially like her as the baddy in In Name Only. 

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I can't bring to mind the actual Ava vocals right now. But I think MGM was generally right to dub. Even actors who are "passable" will be disappointing in songs that are musically challenging or iconic. I'm glad Audrey Hepburn wasn't dubbed in Funny Face and Breakfast at Tiffany's, but I'm glad she was dubbed when she sang I Could Have Danced All Night.

And, glass half full, without dubbing, we wouldn't have heard the marvelous voices of Trudy Erwin, Anita Ellis, Martha Mears, Pat Friday, India Adams, Marni Nixon, and others. The best of them found a way to mimic what we think the actors' voices would have sounded like. I recently heard an awful example of the contrary, though. Hal Derwin dubbing for Robert Cummings in Lucky Me. But the failed examples were as much a result of bad dubber-casting as anything else.

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It’s Reframing Week on TCM. I just watched Breakfast at Tiffany’s with a discussion of the offensive stereotype of the Mickey Rooney performance. It’s still such a strange movie with such a tenuous relation to the source material. 

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Further thoughts on Breakfast at Tiffany's:  I enjoyed watching Audrey Hepburn be Audrey Hepburn for two hours, but the story makes no sense with that pie in the sky ending.  These damaged characters would not end up like that.  And Audrey was married to Jed Clampett?  Too much of a transformation.

Edited by GussieK

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10 hours ago, GussieK said:

It’s Reframing Week on TCM. I just watched Breakfast at Tiffany’s with a discussion of the offensive stereotype of the Mickey Rooney performance. It’s still such a strange movie with such a tenuous relation to the source material. 

Even if Mickey Rooney's cringe-y performance was absent (and, really, how essential is his character to the movie?), I find Breakfast at Tiffany's an overrated bore. 

Besides, I'm tired of how Holly Golightly is considered Audrey Hepburn's definitive role. Hepburn turned in way better performances in Wait Until Dark (which I love, despite the Idiot Plot), The Nun's Story, and Two for the Road.

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10 minutes ago, Wiendish Fitch said:

Even if Mickey Rooney's cringe-y performance was absent (and, really, how essential is his character to the movie?), I find Breakfast at Tiffany's an overrated bore. 

Besides, I'm tired of how Holly Golightly is considered Audrey Hepburn's definitive role. Hepburn turned in way better performances in Wait Until Dark (which I love, despite the Idiot Plot), The Nun's Story, and Two for the Road.

Yes, The Nun's Story is excellent.  That's not Audrey being Audrey.  Still I also love Audrey being Audrey, as in Sabrina and in Breakfast. 

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3 minutes ago, GussieK said:

Yes, The Nun's Story is excellent.  That's not Audrey being Audrey.  Still I also love Audrey being Audrey, as in Sabrina and in Breakfast. 

And, of course, Roman Holiday. 😊

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59 minutes ago, Wiendish Fitch said:

Even if Mickey Rooney's cringe-y performance was absent (and, really, how essential is his character to the movie?), I find Breakfast at Tiffany's an overrated bore.

BaT suffers most because of George Peppard. I like the movie a good deal but I would like it a million times better with any other actor. And that's true of every movie George Peppard was ever in.

I'm curious, @GussieK, since you watched the "reframing," how did they reframe Rooney's performance? I mean, the obvious would be to say "the times were different" but I'm hoping they went at least a little beyond the obvious.

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49 minutes ago, Milburn Stone said:

BaT suffers most because of George Peppard. I like the movie a good deal but I would like it a million times better with any other actor. And that's true of every movie George Peppard was ever in.

I'm curious, @GussieK, since you watched the "reframing," how did they reframe Rooney's performance? I mean, the obvious would be to say "the times were different" but I'm hoping they went at least a little beyond the obvious.

Yes, I'd have to agree on George Peppard. He's kind of a blank. 

I think you can catch the reframing commentaries (before and after the movie) on Watch TCM.  In any event, they were all pretty scathing, especially Patricia (oops, Alicia) Malone.  But they gave some historical context from the idea that it was coming fairly close after WWII, and those stereotypes had been in wide circulation from the war (ironically, these were in the news recently in regard to Dr. Seuss's wartime cartoons).  They didn't just rely on "times were different."  In fact, they were more incredulous that this would have happened at all even for the times. 

I would disagree, however.  I was six years old when that movie was made, and I remember that kind of stereotyped "humor" was commonplace all over.  For example, they were still showing Amos and Andy on TV.  And the Jackie Gleason show had Crazy Guggenheim. 

I suppose the comments were filmed before the recent spate of anti-Asian violence, because they did not mention it.

 

There was also a reframing on Swing Time, which was on later last night, and I haven't watched yet.  Not sure what the problematic content is.  Will report back later.

Edited by GussieK · Reason: got host's name wrong
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10 minutes ago, GussieK said:

I think you can catch the reframing commentaries (before and after the movie) on Watch TCM.  In any event, they were all pretty scathing, especially Patricia Malone.  But they gave some historical context from the idea that it was coming fairly close after WWII, and those stereotypes had been in wide circulation from the war...They didn't just rely on "times were different."  In fact, they were more incredulous that this would have happened at all even for the times. 

I would disagree, however. 

I agree with your disagreement! 1962 was 17 years after the conclusion of WW2. To put that in context, 1945 was the 2004 to our 2021. From some perspectives, "only yesterday" in 1962. Just as 2004 seems to me now.

Edited by Milburn Stone
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Oh, Swing Time has Fred Astaire in blackface!  Ooops.

Will watch the rest later. 

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On 3/18/2021 at 6:30 AM, Milburn Stone said:

I can't bring to mind the actual Ava vocals right now. But I think MGM was generally right to dub. Even actors who are "passable" will be disappointing in songs that are musically challenging or iconic. I'm glad Audrey Hepburn wasn't dubbed in Funny Face and Breakfast at Tiffany's, but I'm glad she was dubbed when she sang I Could Have Danced All Night.

 

Can't disagree that most  of Eliza 's songs in My Fair Lady for the most part would be beyond the scope of most non professionally trained singer/actors.  Audrey's discovered MFL singing tracks  are  glaring in her vocal deficiencies, (though it doesn't help they didn't even lower the key for her singing attempts to suit her range)  However,  I do have a soft spot for Audrey's warbling in "Wouldn't it be Luverly" .  Personally  per the character and place in the film, I think her singing suits the character better than the dubbed version:

 

Can't fault 

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Seeking help from my TCM buddies here. Since we’ve missed a couple of weeks of reframing content, I wonder if anyone caught some of the earlier ones. They’re not maintaining them on Watch TCM. What is the problem issue in Woman of the Year?  I haven’t seen it in forever and I don’t remember what it’s even about. It’s not showing on any station right now. 

I’m curious what they said about Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner, which we noted was silly a couple of months ago. 

Call me naive, but I can’t imagine what they are going to say about My Fair Lady next week?  

Edited by GussieK

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1 hour ago, GussieK said:

Seeking help from my TCM buddies here. Since we’ve missed a couple of weeks of reframing content, I wonder if anyone caught some of the earlier ones. They’re not maintaining them on Watch TCM. What is the problem issue in Woman of the Year?  I haven’t seen it in forever and I don’t remember what it’s even about. It’s not showing on any station right now. 

I’m curious what they said about Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner, which we noted was silly a couple of months ago. 

Call me naive, but I can’t imagine what they are going to say about My Fair Lady next week?  

It’s the third act of Woman of the Year. I can’t remember all of what they said but the women (?!) said in a test screening that they wanted Hepburn’s character to be taken down a peg.

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Thanks, @mariah23.  

Further answering my own question on My Fair Lady, my husband read something about the issue would be the offensive patriarchal attitude. Why Can’t a Woman Be More Like a Man? Etc.  

Seems a stretch  to me, as I think everyone always took it to be exaggerated comedy where he gets his comeuppance.  Hard to put this in the same category with, say, Seven Brides For Seven Brothers.  

 

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Have heard about if for years and I finally got to see "The Last Flight" a 1931 Richard Barthelemes movie about  a quartet of World War 1 flying veterans who are adrift in post-War Paris.   

IMO It's more "Hemingway" than anything out there as far as its portrayal of the Lost Generation.  The atmosphere of postwar Paris/Europe is evoked well, and the film has hardly dated.  

Cynical and dark, it's no rosy depiction of the physical and mental psyche of damaged veterans, but quite blunt  in telegraphing there is no "cure" for them, or as one commander describes them "spent bullets" that are still living.   Helen Chandler as the rich girl who joins their escapades is just as damaged in her own way and she is fantastic.

 

 

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7 hours ago, caracas1914 said:

Have heard about if for years and I finally got to see "The Last Flight" a 1931 Richard Barthelemes movie about  a quartet of World War 1 flying veterans who are adrift in post-War Paris.   

IMO It's more "Hemingway" than anything out there as far as its portrayal of the Lost Generation.  The atmosphere of postwar Paris/Europe is evoked well, and the film has hardly dated.  

Cynical and dark, it's no rosy depiction of the physical and mental psyche of damaged veterans, but quite blunt  in telegraphing there is no "cure" for them, or as one commander describes them "spent bullets" that are still living.   Helen Chandler as the rich girl who joins their escapades is just as damaged in her own way and she is fantastic.

 

 

I'm so glad you brought up The Last Flight.  I saw it in a small screening many years ago and just saw that the film has popped up on Watch TCM.  I'm going to make sure I see it before it leaves.  I agree, such a great Lost Generation Film.  No frills.

Every once in awhile I find myself saying "It seemed like a good idea at the time...."

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On 3/20/2021 at 10:27 AM, GussieK said:

What is the problem issue in Woman of the Year?

The sexist ending, that is a sharp departure from the original one, changed based on reactions of test audiences, who had a sick fixation on seeing Katharine Hepburn characters get their "comeuppance".  (Granted, I didn't watch the TCM commentary, but since that's a great movie with a terrible ending, I assume that's what they discussed.)

Originally, Sam takes off to contemplate his thoughts on all that has happened, and is about to miss a deadline; Tess quickly bones up on the boxing match he was to cover and writes an article in his name, saving his career.  Sure, she can be selfish, but she loves him and will also selflessly do things for him (you know, like a person).  That's the impetus for him saying he wants her for who she is, not who she thinks she's supposed to be, and they meet in the middle as equals - both compromising, but neither compromising who they fundamentally are. 

Much better than the 15 minutes of sexist slapstick and oh dear, I'm an utter domestic failure/that's okay, you flawed woman, I love you anyway ending that replaced it.

Fundamentally, the way Tess is presented after the wedding is pretty awful in both versions, but at least the original ending comes back around to treating her like a person rather than a caricature and ultimately celebrating her (to the degree any film of that era actually celebrates women who think and live outside the box the patriarchy tries to contain them within) instead of tearing her down. 

Edited by Bastet
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On 1/3/2021 at 3:16 PM, Charlie Baker said:

This week's Noir Alley isn't available on Watch TCM, unfortunately, because it's worth seeking out.  Last fall, Noir Alley showed They Won't Believe Me, produced by the Hitchcock associate Joan Harrison, and Eddie Muller had as co-host Christina Lane, the author of a biography of  Ms. Harrison.  She was back on in this installment, which featured another project of JH's, The Strange Affair of Uncle Harry.  This movie may or may not be noir--but it sure is intriguing.  For me it played a bit more like an episode of the later Hitchcock TV series Ms. H. produced than a pure noir.  A man, whose once prominent family fell from grace, is the sole support of his two sisters, and does not have much of a life.  Until a younger woman joins the firm he designs fabrics for, and the two develop a romance.  But his one sister, supposedly a near invalid with multiple ills, does her best to prevent them from marrying, and from there things do get murky and noirish. I won't reveal anything, because this is a pretty obscure movie, and the resolution is completely out of left field. You might find it absurd, dismaying, off-putting, or a hoot. (The ending was studio dictated and led to JH leaving her position.)

George Sanders is excellent as the repressed Harry, who finally gets to cut loose--well, loose for him.  Geraldine Fitzgerald is even better as the passive-aggressive sister from hell.  I haven't done the research but this might have been the most substantial role Moyna MacGill had in Hollywood.  (She was Angela Lansbury's mother and had a career in the UK before coming here.) She plays the "nicer" sister very well.

I hope this turns up again in TCM's rotation. Not a classic, maybe not genuine noir, but compelling.

 

I finally caught up with this movie today. It’s on YouTube, for now, unless someone pulls it. Well that ending really was as crazy as you all said. @Rinaldo was that really George Sanders singing?  I saw something that said it was dubbed. 
I thought the one sister was Angela Lansbury and then learned it was her real mom! 

Edited by GussieK

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I'm making my way through all of the television Hitchcocks, and Geraldine Fitzgerald turns up at least a couple of times--in episodes produced by Joan Harrison, of course. 

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22 hours ago, GussieK said:

I finally caught up with this movie [The Strange Affair of Uncle Harry] today. It’s on YouTube, for now, unless someone pulls it. Well that ending really was as crazy as you all said. @Rinaldo was that really George Sanders singing?  I saw something that said it was dubbed. 
I thought the one sister was Angela Lansbury and then learned it was her real mom! 

Everything I've read about the film and Sanders's life, plus my experience elsewhere of his excellent singing voice, tells me that that was his own singing. But I'm always ready to learn. What's your source that said otherwise?

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20 minutes ago, Rinaldo said:

Everything I've read about the film and Sanders's life, plus my experience elsewhere of his excellent singing voice, tells me that that was his own singing. But I'm always ready to learn. What's your source that said otherwise?

Definitely nothing definitive.  I was scrolling through IMDB yesterday.  I won't be able to go back to it easily.  When I was listening to the singing, it sounded like someone else's voice, but that's just my ear.   It's so funny that all this info about dubbing is coming up at the same time.

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25 minutes ago, Rinaldo said:

Everything I've read about the film and Sanders's life, plus my experience elsewhere of his excellent singing voice, tells me that that was his own singing. But I'm always ready to learn. What's your source that said otherwise?

 

Here's the review from IMDB that mentioned dubbing.  Sounds like this was from a screening where there was widespread disapprobation of the singing.  I have to say in watching the movie, it seemed very dubby to me.

Viewed the movie with an audience last night - audience and cast comments

AustinKatAnne1 July 2003

I saw this movie last night at an Austin Film Society screening, with a very receptive audience. I'm sure someone else will write the in-depth, perceptive review, but I happen to like the shallow stuff:

Whether intended by the makers or not, this audience found some hilarious double entendres (e.g. George Sanders showing off his 9-inch telescope).

A scene with inappropriate dubbing of Mr. Sanders' singing voice brought groans. I would have liked to hear him sing. (Audrey Hepburn's real voice should have been used in 'My Fair Lady', too!)

The older sister of the main character looked so much like Jessica Fletcher that my husband suspected a relationship and we looked her up. The actress was Moyna MacGill, the mother of Angela Lansbury... it was fascinating to see the similarity in motions and gestures.

The family's cook was played by Sara Algood. One of her other roles was as the matron Morton in 'Roxie Hart', the forerunner to 'Chicago'.

There was something very charming about seeing George Sanders without the cynicism

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Joan Crawford today on TCM.   Starting at 10:30 am Pacific time - Mildred Pierce, Possessed, and What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?

 

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This is George doing his own singing in Call Me Madam:

It's not night-and-day different from his singing in Uncle Harry, but I'm inclined to agree with @GussieK that he's dubbed in UH. I would not bet the farm on it, though!

George Sanders is an actor whose death colors our perception of him in life. That note he left--"I'm so bored," or whatever it said--retrospectively amplifies the jadedness he brought to so many parts. Similarly, James Dean's death by auto accident, while it may not have been suicide, suggests a recklessness that amplifies the "living on the edge"-ness he brought to his roles.

Edited by Milburn Stone
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36 minutes ago, Milburn Stone said:

This is George doing his own singing in Call Me Madam:

It's not night-and-day different from his singing in Uncle Harry, but I'm inclined to agree with @GussieK that he's dubbed in UH. I would not bet the farm on it, though!

George Sanders is an actor whose death colors our perception of him in life. That note he left--"I'm so bored," or whatever it said--retrospectively amplifies the jadedness he brought to so many parts. Similarly, James Dean's death by auto accident, while it may not have been suicide, suggests a recklessness that amplifies the "living on the edge"-ness he brought to his roles.

Thanks for posting this.  Even if this is George Sanders's voice, the lip synching looks badly done, as if he dubbed himself. 

 

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3 hours ago, GussieK said:

the lip synching looks badly done, as if he dubbed himself. 

Well of course (and I don't mean to imply that this is new info to anyone), almost all* singing in movies is dubbed in that sense -- the soundtrack is pre-recorded with orchestra, and the actor later syncs with it during shooting. There's supposed to be someone on the spot to catch any failures in that regard, but discrepancies do slip through. So even those who do their own singing are still trying to sync with their own soundtrack.

(*"almost" -- There have been rare cases when actors were allowed to sing what's called "live" on the set. The film of Les Mis is a famous example, the reason having been publicized as dramatically better [I have my own opinion on that case, but this isn't the place].. Usually it's because someone can't master lip-sync [the whole cast of At Long Last Love] or has the clout to refuse to try [Rex Harrison in My Fair Lady]. The mechanics of this have varied according to what technology is available at the time. I should add that I'm all in favor of filming or videoing stage musicals or operas live from the stage, but the situation is different: a long-rehearsed production with a cast long familiar with their roles, captured in continuity from beginning to end in stage perspective.)

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George Sanders was to join the Broadway company of South Pacific as Emile, but backed out. Which sort of leads me back to my earlier post about Doris Day.  Might he have been viable for the movie Emile?  Or was he, in his early fifties. too old by the time the movie was made? (Though of course there usually is a significant age gap between Emile and Nellie.)  Evidently, TPTB thought he could pull it off on stage.  Years later, could he have done the film? Would they have dubbed him?

 

 

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23 hours ago, Rinaldo said:

There have been rare cases when actors were allowed to sing what's called "live" on the set...The mechanics of this have varied according to what technology is available at the time.

Now I suppose they have a little something in their ear, but before that was feasible, I've always wondered how the actor was able to hear a playback of the music track (even a simple piano guide) without the microphone picking it up as well.

Edited to add: I feel a little foolish having asked that question, because I just remembered I did it myself on some musical spots in the seventies. A Kellogg's campaign where we had actors (including the occasional unfashionable-in-the-70s but cheap star, like Nanette Fabray and Donald O'Connor) singing the jingle, while a speaker played the backing track, positioned just close enough for the actor to hear and just far enough away for the microphone not to. Hey, it's been a while.

Edited by Milburn Stone
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Don't forget to tune in to the reframing movies tonight!

My Fair Lady, Psycho, The Children's Hour, and Dragon Seed.  Also a rebroadcast of Tarzan, the Ape Man from last week. 

Interesting how many of these movies have included Katharine Hepburn.

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23 minutes ago, GussieK said:

Don't forget to tune in to the reframing movies tonight!

My Fair Lady, Psycho, The Children's Hour, and Dragon Seed.  Also a rebroadcast of Tarzan, the Ape Man from last week. 

Interesting how many of these movies have included Katharine Hepburn.

I think there were two different Tarzan films.  I think last week’s was released in 1959.

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2 minutes ago, mariah23 said:

I think there were two different Tarzan films.  I think last week’s was released in 1959.

Ah--they're showing the older one tonight.  Well, that may not be with reframing.

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Saw "Dancing Lady" last night.   If I'm not mistaken that's Joan Crawford's actual singing voice along with Fred Astaire, , it lacks the "perfect" sound of so many dubbed voices.   

 

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On 3/26/2021 at 2:13 PM, caracas1914 said:

If I'm not mistaken that's Joan Crawford's actual singing voice along with Fred Astaire, , it lacks the "perfect" sound of so many dubbed voices.

I think that's right. She had sung (and danced) in Hollywood Revue in 1929, a film & date clearly too lacking in technical sophistication to attempt any dubbing -- it's clearly being recorded live on a stage, with all the attendant irregularities and noises. By 1933 it was probably possible, but nobody would have seen the need in a vocally undemanding movie, with a star who had been a hoofer onscreen so recently.

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On 3/25/2021 at 2:32 PM, GussieK said:

Don't forget to tune in to the reframing movies tonight!

My Fair Lady, Psycho, The Children's Hour, and Dragon Seed.  Also a rebroadcast of Tarzan, the Ape Man from last week. 

Interesting how many of these movies have included Katharine Hepburn.

This reminds myself:  Three of the movies included Audrey Hepburn!

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On 3/27/2021 at 6:31 PM, Rinaldo said:

I think that's right. She had sung (and danced) in Hollywood Revue in 1929, a film & date clearly too lacking in technical sophistication to attempt any dubbing -- it's clearly being recorded live on a stage, with all the attendant irregularities and noises. By 1933 it was probably possible, but nobody would have seen the need in a vocally undemanding movie, with a star who had been a hoofer onscreen so recently.

She was singing in other late 1920s-1930s MGM films as well. She never had a strong voice to begin with.

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Well, after all, contrarian views aren't exactly unknown among our lovely community here. It keeps discussion lively.

Either I've forgotten intervening developments (always a possibility with me), or with 31 Days of Oscar, TCM has returned to a sane, readable format for online schedule layout. I can actually see what's coming up this month. A-Z isn't as much fun as other more intricate orderings they've used, but I'm not complaining.

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7 hours ago, Inquisitionist said:

I have rarely found anything written by Armond White to be "interesting."  He seems to delight in taking obstinately contrarian views.

He took a very extreme position, but I didn't think he was entirely wrong.  I find value in old movies that in being of their times, do show things that are unacceptable now.  I hope there is a balance between censoring old movies out of existence and rewriting history and on the other side, blind acceptance of racism and sexism and all the other things that need to be rooted out of society.  I don't think that is accomplished by ignoring the past.  I'm old enough to take a longer view of some things - I am certain that at some point what is acceptable today will be looked upon with horror.

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The "re-framed" series made me fear that censorship is right around the corner, despite their denials. I love film-noir even though I know some dame will probably be slapped around. I'm able to put that in perspective without their help.

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1 hour ago, Razzberry said:

People may react strongly because of what's happening to art around the country, even in my beloved San Francisco.

https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2021/02/san-francisco-renaming-spree/617894/

The Holier-Than-Thou Crusade in San Francisco
"This debacle is just the latest example of “progressive” cultural censorship in a city once renowned as a bastion of free speech."

That's some crazy stuff!  I would hope there a way to find a balance that does not require censorship and a denial of history.

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19 hours ago, Suzn said:

He took a very extreme position, but I didn't think he was entirely wrong.  I find value in old movies that in being of their times, do show things that are unacceptable now.  I hope there is a balance between censoring old movies out of existence and rewriting history and on the other side, blind acceptance of racism and sexism and all the other things that need to be rooted out of society.  I don't think that is accomplished by ignoring the past.  I'm old enough to take a longer view of some things - I am certain that at some point what is acceptable today will be looked upon with horror.

I haven't had the opportunity to watch any of the Reframing pieces, but from what I've read, they aren't censoring (the movies are still shown in their entirety) and they are providing context that some viewers should find helpful.  White seems to ignore all that and jump to the extreme (and IMO unfounded) position that TCM is censoring.

18 hours ago, Razzberry said:

People may react strongly because of what's happening to art around the country, even in my beloved San Francisco.

https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2021/02/san-francisco-renaming-spree/617894/

The Holier-Than-Thou Crusade in San Francisco
"This debacle is just the latest example of “progressive” cultural censorship in a city once renowned as a bastion of free speech."

Well, SF has gotten weirder and weirder over time.  To say "even in" SF...  nah, SF is at the forefront of this stuff.  Who is electing the officials out there?

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48 minutes ago, Inquisitionist said:

I haven't had the opportunity to watch any of the Reframing pieces, but from what I've read, they aren't censoring (the movies are still shown in their entirety) and they are providing context that some viewers should find helpful.  White seems to ignore all that and jump to the extreme (and IMO unfounded) position that TCM is censoring.

Right.  It's a very specific kind of movie criticism that people have a choice not to watch.  I always find it a little ironic when people argue that pointing out the flaws in the past movies is erasing their merit when the reason so many of the flaws exist is because many groups/points of view also had been systematically erased by allowing only a certain type to produce, write and direct in Hollywood.

Having a show point that out isn't censorship. 

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