Tuesday, October 27, 2015
P.S. Even tawdry affairs were pretty genteel in 1964, wouldn't you say? Can you really make the most of your forbidden passion when you haven't even unbuckled your belt, and your lady is fully dressed? Maybe Lucy should've just given them a really stern warning...
Wednesday, October 21, 2015
But off-screen this was a true mutual admiration society. Chaplin thought Raye's facility for slapstick comedy in keeping with the great traditions of silent film days, while she regarded him, her co-star and director, as nothing less than a genius.
Audiences may not have quite been ready for the dark humor and pointed social commentary of Verdoux when it was released in 1947. Decades later, though, it's easy to admire Chaplin's skill as a filmmaker - and the comic gifts he spotlighted in one of Martha's best films.
Find out more in Martha Raye: Film and Television Clown.
Thursday, October 15, 2015
|The early days of a TV empire.|
Fittingly, anniversaries were the topic of that premiere episode, as the wives clash with their husbands on how to observe the Mertzes' 18 years of marriage. When the girls refuse to celebrate at the boxing ring, Lucy threatens to find escorts who will take her and Ethel somewhere more appealing. Ricky calls her bluff, and says he and Fred will also find dates for the evening. Thanks to some typical Lucy Ricardo scheming, the guys end up with their own wives in disguise, as a hillbilly gal and her Maw.
Not all critics warmed to this new situation comedy, but audiences embraced Lucy and her companions from Day One, and there's seemingly no end in sight to that love affair. Not all TV shows from the 1950s play well today, but you're a stronger character than I am if you can watch an episode of I Love Lucy sixty-odd years later and not crack a smile.
Thursday, October 8, 2015
Even though most listeners caught on that this was all in fun, Gracie did in fact receive thousands of write-in votes that year. Seventy-five years ago, she must have seemed like the nuttiest candidate in political history. Fast forward to 2015, and ... do I even need to say it? Sometimes we just don't know when we're well off.
Thursday, October 1, 2015
Moviegoers of a certain age will almost certainly know this little ditty, which for years exhorted theater customers to spend money at the refreshment stand. Produced in the 1950s (exact dates vary, according to the source), it was made by a company called Filmack Studios, and featured animation by Dave Fleischer, known for his association with Popeye cartoons.
But did you know this short was actually recognized by the National Film Registry in 2000? The National Film Preservation Board described it as "probably the best known 'snipe' or theatrical movie trailer ever produced."
And now if you'll excuse me, I think I'll go get a snack...