The Sinatra Centennial blogathon is almost upon us! It will run from tomorrow, Thursday, December 10, through to Sunday, December 13. I’m hosting the first two days here at Movie Classics, and Emily at The Vintage Cameo will be taking over for Saturday (the birthday itself!) and Sunday.
I’ll put up a posting tomorrow morning and please leave a comment with details of your posting when it’s up, or you can email me at email@example.com if you prefer. Alternatively, you can tweet me at @MovieClassicsWP and/or Emily at @vintagecameos. If you’re tweeting about your post, it would be great if you could use a #Sinatrablogathon hashtag.
Here’s a link to the blogathon announcement with the full list of those taking part. We haven’t allocated days in the end, so it’s up to you when to post.
Looking forward to it, and so glad you can join us!
Zeffie Tilbury appeared in more than 70 films, came from a famous theatrical family and had a long stage career before making her film debut at the age of 54. So I’ve been surprised to see how hard it is to find much information about this grand old lady of film and theatre. Admittedly, many of her movie parts were small and uncredited – but she also played a number of major roles.
The first time I really noticed her was in Desire (1936), directed by Frank Borzage and starring Marlene Dietrich and Gary Cooper. Tilbury, who was then in her 70s, plays an elderly conwoman going under the name Aunt Olga, and urging on Dietrich’s character to press ahead with her efforts to con Cooper. She makes a memorable entrance, heading for the booze and admitting in her aristocratic English voice that she is just out of jail. There aren’t many actors who can hold their own with Dietrich on camera, let alone steal a scene, but I’d say Tilbury manages to do it on this occasion.
After watching this powerful and haunting Korean war film, I belatedly realised it wasn’t really a good choice for a Grace Kelly blogathon. Kelly’s screen time is all too limited and her part doesn’t give her much scope as an actress. However, her character, Nancy, is important, giving a glimpse of the life that the reluctant hero, her husband Harry Brubaker (William Holden) has been wrenched away from.
Based on a book by James Michener, whose work also inspired South Pacific, this film has hints of the musical’s mood of disillusion over war. Despite being released only a short time after the end of the Korean War, and made with the co-operation of the US Navy, it isn’t the gung-ho propaganda piece I was half-expecting. The movie pays tribute to the courage of the individuals caught up in the conflict, but suggests that many of them didn’t really know why they were there. Although there are many exciting and stirring scenes, which won the film an Oscar for best special effects, they are often undercut by the sadness and weariness of the central character. This element gives this glossy action picture a surprisingly downbeat feeling at times.
Thanks so much to everyone who has signed up to take part in the Sinatra Centennial Blogathon, which I’m hosting jointly with Emily over at The Vintage Cameo – and thanks so much again to Emily for co-hosting and creating all our fabulous banners. :)
We’ve had a great response and are looking forward to the 100th birthday fun from December 10 to 13, but this is just an update to say that there are still quite a lot of Frank’s films available for any bloggers who haven’t yet joined the party!
Here’s a list of those which are still available – but, of course, you don’t just have to write about a specific film he starred in.
Other themes, such as Sinatra events in your area, his work with other stars and his theme songs offer loads of possibilities. We’re looking for no exact duplicates, but he had such a packed career, that shouldn’t be a problem! If you’re tempted by a theme posting, just check the original blogathon announcement to see whether your chosen theme is still available.
I’ve been enjoying contributing to a few blogathons lately, and this is my contribution to another one – the Universal Blogathon, celebrating the studio’s 100th birthday. Please take a look at the great range of postings.
Universal might be best known for its horror films, but the studio also produced many other types of movie over the years, including Westerns. The Alaskan gold rush is the backdrop for The Spoilers, a lighthearted film with a great cast, headed by Marlene Dietrich, John Wayne and Randolph Scott. I’d remembered all the best bits of this film from a previous viewing, before deciding to revisit it for the blogathon, and, having watched it again, would have to admit there are quite a few flaws which had slipped my mind. So it isn’t a masterpiece – but it does provide a lot of fun and there is loads of chemistry between Dietrich and Wayne, who were an item in real life at this time. It’s also interesting to see Western hero Scott in a less than sympathetic role.
This is my contribution to the Silent Cinema Blogathon being organised by Crystal of The Good Old Days of Classic Hollywood. Please do take a look at the other postings – a lot of great films are being covered.
Greta Garbo made her name as a goddess of silent film. Yet, today, her silents are far harder to see than her talkies – especially in the UK, where I don’t think a single one of her silent films is available on DVD, except on import. I’d love to see a boxed set of her silents released, since the few I’ve managed to see are excellent. A Woman of Affairs is no exception, featuring a luminous performance by Garbo, with her ever-changing expressions conveying her emotions with no need for words. Sadly, it has only ever had home video releases on VHS and laser disc, but it was available on Youtube at the time of me writing this posting.
Come fly with us and join the Sinatra Centennial Blogathon! As you’re probably aware,
December 12 this year would have been Frank Sinatra’s 100th birthday. Many celebrations are being staged around the world to mark his Centennial – and now classic movie bloggers can raise a toast too.
Emily of The Vintage Cameo and Judy of the Movie Classics blog are joining forces to hold a blogathon over the birthday weekend, from December 10 to 13, and we would love you to join in.
Although Sinatra is of course best-known as a singer, he also starred in many films, from the 1940s right through to the 70s, and won an Oscar for his role in From Here to Eternity.