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On 4/9/2021 at 10:25 AM, Inquisitionist said:

I've been watching The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone, which I recorded recently, but am not sure I can persevere to the end.  Vivien Leigh is compelling, as always, but the storyline is getting quite depressing and as pretty as Warren Beatty was.... he ain't no Paolo!  

It's a damp, dated little thing. It only threatens to turn into a great movie in Lotte Lenya's few scenes as the gigolo procurer. She's a hoot. 

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I can't get enough of Peter Seller's "Normal guy" scene from Lolita.  Mason was right to worry that he was stealing the movie.

 

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On 4/15/2021 at 10:04 AM, Simon Boccanegra said:

It's a damp, dated little thing. It only threatens to turn into a great movie in Lotte Lenya's few scenes as the gigolo procurer. She's a hoot. 

Lotte Lenya was having quite the career renaissance right about then, wasn't she? This, From Russia with Love, and a couple of years later the original stage cast of Cabaret. Not bad for someone who'd been considered to have reached her peak on the Berlin musical stage around 1930.

On 4/16/2021 at 2:07 PM, Charlie Baker said:

TCM is supporting this documentarian's search for the Orson Welles cut of The Magnificent Ambersons.

Full Ambersons?

However long a shot, that would be a wonderful discovery. The Ambersons we have is 2/3 of a magnificent film, and (like Citizen Kane just before it), the surprise is that unlike most "masterpieces," it comes at us with a light, deft, self-mocking touch.

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On 4/16/2021 at 11:07 AM, Charlie Baker said:

TCM is supporting this documentarian's search for the Orson Welles cut of The Magnificent Ambersons.

Full Ambersons?

I suspect that the raison d'etre of this whole exercise is to get new material for the documentary,  

 This Vanity Fair article from 2010:

https://www.vanityfair.com/hollywood/2010/04/magnificent-obsession-200201

Quote

On his own, Grossberg had made two trips to Brazil in ’94 and ’96 to investigate the possible whereabouts of the composite print of The Magnificent Ambersons. Grossberg is now a New York–based entertainment reporter for the E! Online Web site and an aspiring filmmaker. He says that while in Brazil he was introduced to a man named Michel De Esprito, who had worked in the archives of Cinedia in the 1950s and 60s, and who claimed that Welles’s print still existed in that era. “He swears that he saw an original print of Ambersons in a can, mislabeled,” says Grossberg. “I think he actually projected it. But when he returned a few weeks later to look at the film more intently, it was moved away.” De Esprito raised a number of possibilities as to what might have happened to the print—it could have been destroyed, pilfered, or transferred to a private collector. “We pursued some leads, even talking about tracking it through Gypsies,” says Grossberg, who has not abandoned hope that the print exists. “But after that, we kind of ran out of leads.”

I realize hope springs eternal but if they exercised all their search options 25 years ago I would think that any leads would be even more stone cold dead now.

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TCM fans, quick, there's still time to see two wacky entries on Watch TCM:  Claudelle Inglish (another bodice ripper from Erskine Caldwell) and Inside Daisy Clover, where Natalie Wood plays a stand-in for Judy Garland and Robert Redford plays a stand-in for Rock Hudson.  It's so over the top.  I hate the fake sixties costumes trying to look like the thirties. At one point Natalie Wood is wearing one of those gigantic sixties poorboy/newsboy hats.  She has a horrible wig, and she bounces around like a spastic tomboy.  And since we recently were discussing dubbed singing by Natalie and Audrey Hepburn, Natalie apparently sings one song, but the others are dubbed. 

Edited by GussieK
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1 hour ago, GussieK said:

Natalie apparently sings one song, but the others are dubbed.

According to the information I have, she sings a portion of one song -- the introductory section of "You're Gonna Hear From Me." In the remainder of that song, and elsewhere in the movie, her singing is dubbed by Jackie Ward. The only movie I'm aware of in which Natalie Wood is allowed to sing for herself throughout is Gypsy.

Edited by Rinaldo

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12 hours ago, GussieK said:

 Inside Daisy Clover, where Natalie Wood plays a stand-in for Judy Garland and Robert Redford plays a stand-in for Rock Hudson

Given the time period it's supposed to take place in (and boy do I agree that it's hard to remember given the uber-sixties hair, clothes, and makeup) I don't think Rock Hudson could be the inspiration for the Redford character, nor could Garland be the inspiration for the Wood character.  Mind you I don't know who would be, exactly, and it's such a ridiculous movie that I don't care.  The other two big 30's-in-the-60's howlers for me are Harlow and The Legend of Lilah Clare.

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4 hours ago, ratgirlagogo said:

iven the time period it's supposed to take place in (and boy do I agree that it's hard to remember given the uber-sixties hair, clothes, and makeup) I don't think Rock Hudson could be the inspiration for the Redford character, nor could Garland be the inspiration for the Wood character.

You have a point, for sure, but the movie was playing with what 60s audiences were aware of then, too, even if theoretically applied to an earlier time. I do think Judy Garland was already in people's awareness as "girl with singing and acting talent who was pushed too hard by her elders," given her well-publicized troubles in the 50s, so they could easily believe such things have always happened. The Rock Hudson connection is a bit trickier (and, to me, more intriguing), as all male movie stars were officially straight then, and (as far as I can recall from being around, and curious, then) the cover-ups generally were taken at face value by the public. Even Liberace and Paul Lynde were unquestioned -- people simply didn't want to know. Perhaps Montgomery Clift evoked some whispers by then, being finished as a star, then dead. So it may be most accurate to say that the very murkily presented Redford character was a product of the public's just-beginning uncomfortable awareness that somewhere, somehow, People Like That have pretended otherwise and become stars. 

[Sorry to go on at such length... it's a tricky subject to get right.]

Edited by Rinaldo
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I haven't seen Inside Daisy Clover, but it sure strikes me as one of those super-divisive, "love it or hate it" curios.

Natalie Wood's daughter Natasha loves it, so much so she named her own daughter Clover.

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5 hours ago, Wiendish Fitch said:

I haven't seen Inside Daisy Clover, but it sure strikes me as one of those super-divisive, "love it or hate it" curios.

Natalie Wood's daughter Natasha loves it, so much so she named her own daughter Clover.

I totally understand why Inside Daisy Clover is a bad movie - a mess, really --  but still find it very enjoyable, sometimes precisely because of its badness.  Count me in the "love it" group.

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20 hours ago, Rinaldo said:

...the movie was playing with what 60s audiences were aware of then, too, even if theoretically applied to an earlier time. I do think Judy Garland was already in people's awareness as "girl with singing and acting talent who was pushed too hard by her elders," given her well-publicized troubles in the 50s...

One more point in support of this: The song "You're Gonna Hear From Me" is the most Judy Garland song that Judy Garland never sang. The Previns had to have written it with Garland in the back of their minds. It's a credit to the song that it can stand up to all kinds of interpretations (Bill Evans played it an infinite number of times) but it's prototypical Judy.

Edited by Milburn Stone
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I was going to say something similar to what @Rinaldo said.  The story made reference to well known star biographies that occurred after the time period of the movie.  Judy Garland got started in the later thirties and was known to have been abused by the system.  Rock Hudson's brief beard marriage was widely publicized.  I think people must have whispered which is why they had him get married.  People were not outed publicly--they still aren't really. 

19 hours ago, Wiendish Fitch said:

I haven't seen Inside Daisy Clover, but it sure strikes me as one of those super-divisive, "love it or hate it" curios.

Natalie Wood's daughter Natasha loves it, so much so she named her own daughter Clover.

They even had Natasha on to introduce the movie.

On 4/28/2021 at 7:45 PM, Rinaldo said:

According to the information I have, she sings a portion of one song -- the introductory section of "You're Gonna Hear From Me." In the remainder of that song, and elsewhere in the movie, her singing is dubbed by Jackie Ward. The only movie I'm aware of in which Natalie Wood is allowed to sing for herself throughout is Gypsy.

Poor Natalie couldn't catch a break, she only got part of the song!

Edited by GussieK

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TCM now shows movies from the 70s and 80s and 90s as classics.  This morning I caught part Twice in a Lifetime, where Gene Hackman dumps Ellen Burstyn for Ann-Margret, the "sex kitten."  He comes off as quite a jerk.  Amy Madigan plays his angry daughter.  A more overwrought performance I have rarely seen.  I was struck at how much much Ally Sheedy, playing her sister, looked like she could be a real sister.

Edited by GussieK · Reason: spelled Burstyn wrong
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19 hours ago, Miss Anne Thrope said:

I totally understand why Inside Daisy Clover is a bad movie - a mess, really --  but still find it very enjoyable, sometimes precisely because of its badness.  Count me in the "love it" group.

I'm in the other camp.  I despise Inside Daisy Clover.  It is such a cringeworthy movie.  I like Natalie Woods, but in this movie she turns up her Natalie-isms to 11 and breaks off the knob.

4 hours ago, GussieK said:

TCM now shows movies from the 70s and 80s and 90s as classics.  This morning I caught part Twice in a Lifetime, where Gene Hackman dumps Ellen Burstyn for Ann-Margret, the "sex kitten."  He comes off as quite a jerk.  Amy Madigan plays his angry daughter.  A more overwrought performance I have rarely seen.  I was struck at how much much Ally Sheedy, playing her sister, looked like she could be a real sister.

This squeezes out more and more of the true "classics".  There needs to be two TCMs - one for earlier than 1970 and the other for later movies.

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7 hours ago, GussieK said:

TCM now shows movies from the 70s and 80s and 90s as classics.  This morning I caught part Twice in a Lifetime, where Gene Hackman dumps Ellen Burstyn for Ann-Margret, the "sex kitten."  He comes off as quite a jerk.  Amy Madigan plays his angry daughter.  A more overwrought performance I have rarely seen.  I was struck at how much much Ally Sheedy, playing her sister, looked like she could be a real sister.

It’s Oscar month.  They always play films from 1927 to the present.  I finally watched the LOTR trilogy several years ago when it was broadcast on TCM.

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4 minutes ago, mariah23 said:

It’s Oscar month.  They always play films from 1927 to the present.  I finally watched the LOTR trilogy several years ago when it was broadcast on TCM.

Ah, maybe that's what's going on. 

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30 minutes ago, mariah23 said:

It’s Oscar month.  They always play films from 1927 to the present.

Yes, and sometimes for other themes.  The Women Make Film series, for example, had a lot of films made within the last fifteen years.

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Just watched The Uninvited, which I very much enjoyed, but damn did these people under-react to everything going on.

Spooky ghost crying? Meh, it will dissipate at dawn, just go to bed. Young girl runs head long towards a cliff, man, that was weird, let's go have some tea.

No one seemed all that freaked out about anything.

Edited by Megan
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7 hours ago, Megan said:

Just wanted The Uninvited, which I very much enjoyed, but damn did these people under-react to everything going on.

Spooky ghost crying? Meh, it will dissipate at dawn, just go to bed. Young girl runs head long towards a cliff, man, that was weird, let's go have some tea.

No one seemed all that freaked out about anything.

True, but could their under-reactions be anywhere as egregious as Mia Wasikowska Dull Surprising her way through the gruesome horrors of Crimson Peak?

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Watching Oklahoma! on Disney+. Shirley Jones is terrific as always, but here’s an unpopular opinion: Ali Stroker from the revival did a WAY better Ado Annie than the actress in this movie. She just comes off as drab and whiny. Ali made that stupid “Cain’t Say No” song so much more fun than it ought to be.

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4 minutes ago, Spartan Girl said:

Watching Oklahoma! on Disney+. Shirley Jones is terrific as always, but here’s an unpopular opinion: Ali Stroker from the revival did a WAY better Ado Annie than the actress in this movie. She just comes off as drab and whiny. Ali made that stupid “Cain’t Say No” song so much more fun than it ought to be.

Oh, I totally agree. Casting Gloria Graham as Ado Annie was an appallingly dumb idea. It's bad enough that she cannot sing AT ALL, but why is she so immobile, dull, and even nervous during "Cain't Say No", which is supposed to be a loud and proud "I am" song? She sings about she "cain't be prissy and quaint", but.... she's being prissy and quaint! And if that's the joke, it sure doesn't land! For God's sake, prim and uptight Laurie is showing more skin than allegedly loose Annie! It's not as if Graham couldn't play vixenish characters; hell, her star-making role was as good-time gal Violet in It's a Wonderful Life!

I almost feel bad for Graham; it's bad enough competing against young and gorgeous Shirley Jones, but Jones could sing like an angel, while Graham sounds like a cheap bike horn.

I agree with Paw Dugan: THIS is Ado Annie:

 

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I have to wonder why Gloria Grahame was cast in Oklahoma at all, since she can't sing or dance.  She also caused problems on the set, from what I understand.

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The appeal of Gloria Grahame is completely lost on me.

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2 hours ago, Wiendish Fitch said:

For God's sake, prim and uptight Laurie is showing more skin than allegedly loose Annie! It's not as if Graham couldn't play vixenish characters; hell, her star-making role was as good-time gal Violet in It's a Wonderful Life!

That was her?! Oh man now I’m even madder! Her Ado Annie came off more like the Town Ninny than the Town Bimbo! I couldn’t get why all the guys were so into her.

Edited by Spartan Girl
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50 minutes ago, Bastet said:

The appeal of Gloria Grahame is completely lost on me.

She's great in The Big Heat and The Bad & the Beautiful...though she absolutely did not deserve to win Best Supporting Actress over Jean Hagen's iconic role in Singin' in the Rain. Nope, nuh-uh, one of the Academy's greatest boo-boos.

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1 hour ago, Wiendish Fitch said:

[Gloria Grahame is] great in The Big Heat and The Bad & the Beautiful...though she absolutely did not deserve to win Best Supporting Actress over Jean Hagen's iconic role in Singin' in the Rain. Nope, nuh-uh, one of the Academy's greatest boo-boos.

... within a still greater boo-boo by the Academy: that Jean Hagen and Lennie Hayton (scoring) were the only nominations for Singin' in the Rain. One of the true classics of 1950s film, if not all of sound film, and it got little respect from the award-givers. And it wasn't that it was competing only against deathless masterpieces.

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Grahame shows up in a lot of old films I like.  She's very appealing in a certain type of role, and I loved her as the "good wife" in The Bad and the Beautiful (though her screen time was the shortest on record for an Oscar nom, if I'm not mistaken).  Now that I hear who her competition was, her win seems even more baffling. 

BadBeautiful1g.jpg.d3edc04c9b2db141f3d34152268b4004.jpg

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I've said here before that I like GG in Oklahoma for those offbeat (too off for some), quirky features in her performance.  And I find her funny as Ado Annie.  I also appreciate the noir roles that she has her reputation for.  I've said here before more than once that I like when a performer is cast out of their established category and makes it work. Of course it's all subjective and such cases have variable mileage.

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26 minutes ago, Charlie Baker said:

Of course it's all subjective and such cases have variable mileage.

One of my closest friends, with whom I share a love of movies and theater and with whom I travel often to NYC for theater, adores Grahame in Oklahoma! where I find her cringeworthy, almost as if an amateur (which of course she wasn't at all) had been thrust before the camera. We remain friends. 😉 But when I read of the casting call (every young actor in LA) they had for the movie, I keep thinking how much better, say, Debbie Reynolds would have been. No doubt she was the type that gets put to the side as "too on the nose."

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"The person who steals the show is Gloria Grahame as Laurey's pal Ado Annie, the gal who can't say no; she has a subtle, playful gift for minxy comedy which absolutely upstages those big male lummoxes playing opposite her."
https://www.theguardian.com/film/2006/aug/25/musical

Had no idea Rod Steiger was in this too.  The quirky casting is making more sense - now I actually want to see it.

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On 5/1/2021 at 12:17 PM, Spartan Girl said:

Watching Oklahoma! on Disney+.

Related: I keep waiting for Disney+ to put more of its 20th Century Fox catalog on the app. They own one of the greatest non-Disney catalogs in all of film! When are they going to realize it? There are certainly enough Fox films that are "on-brand" for Disney. Oh well, maybe they have a dedicated Fox Film app in the works. (It could include Fox-produced TV shows, like Dobie Gillis!)

P.S. I love Gloria Grahame in everything. Including Oklahoma. I grew up on the soundtrack LP, and she will always be the Platonic ideal of Ado Annies for me.

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The casting of Oklahoma!, as with some other big musical adaptations, seemed to involve almost every working actor of suitable age at that time. The new-wave "Method" actors (to use the standard oversimplifying shorthand) of the decade were certainly included -- Paul Newman and James Dean were contenders for Curly, and some sources say that Joanne Woodward was actually offered Laurey -- but of those, Rod Steiger was the one who was actually cast, and very effectively so. 

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I LOVE Oklahoma and was delighted to find it on Disney+ this weekend. I've always been baffled by Gloria Grahame as Ado Annie.  I thought she was too old for the part and kept wondering what was going on with her face, she appeared so puffy. Looked it up and she was 29 when she made Oklahoma and had had so many plastic surgeries on her face, and specifically her upper lip,  that it was paralyzed.  Sad that she thought she was so unattractive.  

I was not aware she won an Oscar for the Bad and the Beautiful, maybe because her character died? Not an Oscar worthy performance in my opinion.

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1 hour ago, jah1986 said:

I LOVE Oklahoma and was delighted to find it on Disney+ this weekend. I've always been baffled by Gloria Grahame as Ado Annie.  I thought she was too old for the part and kept wondering what was going on with her face, she appeared so puffy. Looked it up and she was 29 when she made Oklahoma and had had so many plastic surgeries on her face, and specifically her upper lip,  that it was paralyzed.  Sad that she thought she was so unattractive.  

Gloria Grahame was famously self-conscious about her upper lip. She allegedly would stuff cotton under her lip to make it look fuller (making kissing scenes just awful). On top of all that, she had to share the screen with impossibly gorgeous, dulcet-voiced, barely-in-her-20s Shirley Jones. 

1 hour ago, jah1986 said:

I was not aware she won an Oscar for the Bad and the Beautiful, maybe because her character died? Not an Oscar worthy performance in my opinion.

Agree 100%. Grahame was amusing as heck in TBatB, but more worthy of the Oscar than Jean Hagen? Absolutely not.

Edited by Wiendish Fitch
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Just a reminder that the polarizing Ms. Grahame can be seen in her Oscar nominated role in Crossfire tonight, followed by the masterpiece The Night of The Hunter.

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21 hours ago, Milburn Stone said:

Related: I keep waiting for Disney+ to put more of its 20th Century Fox catalog on the app. They own one of the greatest non-Disney catalogs in all of film! When are they going to realize it? There are certainly enough Fox films that are "on-brand" for Disney. Oh well, maybe they have a dedicated Fox Film app in the works. (It could include Fox-produced TV shows, like Dobie Gillis!)

THIS.  There needs to be more classic Fox films on Disney Plus.  I recently watched the original The Day The Earth Stood Still.  Why isn't that on Disney Plus?

Edited by benteen
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On 5/2/2021 at 1:32 PM, Rinaldo said:

I keep thinking how much better, say, Debbie Reynolds would have been [for the role of Ado Annie]. No doubt she was the type that gets put to the side as "too on the nose."

I think your guess is right about the reason she wasn't cast, and I agree with TPTB's reasoning. You needed someone not just "spunky" for that role (which Reynolds would have delivered in spades, and is the obvious, surface quality of the character), but someone who could subtly project carnal appetites and the sex appeal to be the object of same, which Reynolds could not have done and Grahame delivered in spades without ever seeming cheap. In that role, she made sex wholesome without ever disguising it as other than sex. I think that must be difficult to do. She did it.

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On 5/2/2021 at 1:01 PM, Charlie Baker said:

I've said here before that I like GG in Oklahoma for those offbeat (too off for some), quirky features in her performance.  And I find her funny as Ado Annie.  

Me, too.  I thought she worked well with Eddie Albert, whom I find hilarious in this movie.

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On 5/3/2021 at 1:02 PM, Rinaldo said:

The casting of Oklahoma!, as with some other big musical adaptations, seemed to involve almost every working actor of suitable age at that time. The new-wave "Method" actors (to use the standard oversimplifying shorthand) of the decade were certainly included -- Paul Newman and James Dean were contenders for Curly, and some sources say that Joanne Woodward was actually offered Laurey -- but of those, Rod Steiger was the one who was actually cast, and very effectively so. 

I can see Newman as Curley, but not Dean. Newman and Woodward as Curley and Laurey--nice! But could they sing?

Steiger was really good, but he was robbed when Jud's solo "Lonely Room" was cut because some idiots thought it would make him too sympathetic.

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1 hour ago, GreekGeek said:

I can see Newman as Curley, but not Dean. Newman and Woodward as Curley and Laurey--nice! But could they sing?

Steiger was really good, but he was robbed when Jud's solo "Lonely Room" was cut because some idiots thought it would make him too sympathetic.

Clearly, with the wide swatch of auditions they were holding, nobody cared if anybody could sing. Studio music heads had dubbers at the ready, and they'd used 'em for years. R&H themselves may have believed otherwise, but they seem to have bided their time and let the casting take its course before guiding the result (they did have clout on this picture) toward people who could sing. And even them, some (like Zinnemann) thought they might have held out for a better actor than Gordon MacRae.

Is that why "Lonely Room" was cut? I've never heard a specific reason, but it's the song I would expect to get cut first (along with "It's a Scandal! It's a Outrage!", which is sometimes cut even onstage) when efforts are being made to shorten the running time. Most stage musicals have a song or two in that category that duly disappear on film. In any case, Steiger performs it on the "soundtrack album" (which, like those for the next three R&H films, was actually separately recorded and not taken from the soundtrack, and so could include cut songs or those never filmed at all).

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On 5/3/2021 at 3:09 PM, Wiendish Fitch said:

Agree 100%. Grahame was amusing as heck in TBatB, but more worthy of the Oscar than Jean Hagen? Absolutely not.

I agree.  Jean Hagen was simply marvelous in Singin' In the Rain.  Also let's face it, Lina Lamont was right.  IRL the studio would have kept Kathy BTS as Lina's "voice" because the Lockwood/Lamont pairing had more onscreen sizzle than Lockwood/Selden.

Edited by MissAlmond
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The ultimate "Method actor in a musical" casting is Marlon Brando in GUYS AND DOLLS. Certainly was memorable. I think the reason they had that long, extensive dance number at the start of the big dice game in the sewers was because they wanted people to actually like the song "Luck Be a Lady" before Brando ruined it.

ETA: Just learned the "Crapshooters Ballet" was part of the original stage version so I amend my earlier statement by saying "Thank GOD they had that dance number so people would like "Luck be a Lady" before Brando ruined it!

Edited by VCRTracking
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Brando is a perfect example of how ruinous excessive adulation can be, especially when experienced at a young age.  After On The Waterfront his boorish behavior became his worst enemy.

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3 hours ago, VCRTracking said:

The ultimate "Method actor in a musical" casting is Marlon Brando in GUYS AND DOLLS. Certainly was memorable. I think the reason they had that long, extensive dance number at the start of the big dice game in the sewers was because they wanted people to actually like the song "Luck Be a Lady" before Brando ruined it.

I always imagine that a reporter is interviewing Brando after he won the Oscar and asks Brando “Marlon Brando you have just won an Oscar for On the Waterfront what are you going to do now?! Like the Disney World commercials that air after the Super Bowl.  Then Brando tells the reporter “I’m going to star in a musical!” 
 

The reporter is dumbfounded and wonders if he’s on Candid Camera.

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I like Gloria Grahame in general, but I thought she was miscast in Oklahoma, or at least she didn't really hit the energy she needed to hit enough. She is actually just fine in a lot of the movie but her version of "Cant Say No" is so stiff and awkward. I have no idea why she turns her energy off in that song, its like she's trying to go naturalistic in a song that demands wackiness. 

Plan Nine From Outer Space is on in a few days, and I could not be more excited. A true cinematic experience if there ever was one. "Your stupid minds! Stupid! Stupid!"

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Just to see Rod Steiger dancing is enough of a draw for me to rent Oklahoma!  Please tell me that wasn't cut.  lol  He always scares me a little, irrationally, like he's going to reach through the screen and start screaming at me.

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3 hours ago, Razzberry said:

Just to see Rod Steiger dancing is enough of a draw for me to rent Oklahoma!  Please tell me that wasn't cut.  lol  He always scares me a little, irrationally, like he's going to reach through the screen and start screaming at me.

Jud doesn't dance in any version of Oklahoma! Well, he has a few moves in the nightmare part of Laurey's dream ballet, but they're pretty naturalistic.

 

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10 hours ago, Rinaldo said:

Jud doesn't dance in any version of Oklahoma! Well, he has a few moves in the nightmare part of Laurey's dream ballet, but they're pretty naturalistic.

I could easily be wrong about this, but in the movie, the nightmare Jud is performed by an actual dancer. So hopes and dreams of Rod Steiger dancing will be sadly thwarted. (IIRC.)

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