What Price Hollywood?

I often find it interesting when Hollywood turns the camera on itself and gives us stories of what goes on behind the glitz and glamor. But there will always be the question of how honest are the filmmakers really being with us. One of the most famous behind-the-scenes Hollywood stories is A Star is Born.…

Illicit

When I hear the name Barbara Stanwyck I usually think of a western TV series from the late 60’s called The Big Valley. Not because I ever watched the show, but because I remember seeing commercials for reruns of the show that aired on one of our local stations in Chicago. Stanwyck’s career goes back way…

‘Neath the Arizona Skies

Long before John Wayne became the star of big scale westerns like The Searchers or True Grit, he spent a lot of time making small B-westerns. These films often tell very simple little western tales and tend to have very short running times. Today’s film clocks in at a mere 52 minutes and sees the…

Blonde Crazy

As my knowledge of classic films has increased in recent years, there have been certain stars who have become favorites of mine. They are actors and actresses who I will watch in pretty much anything. Two of those names that have risen to the top for me are James Cagney and Joan Blondell. So putting…

The Working Man

I admit, I’ve never been a big business kind of guy. Besides the fact that they make you wear a suit (I haven’t worn one in years), things are just a bit too cutthroat for me. I guess I’m just too much of a nice guy. I definitely wouldn’t be a good fit for the…

Other Men’s Women

They say that you should never judge a book by its cover. Still, there are sometimes when you just know by a movie’s title that you’re in for something scandalous. Even more so if we’re dealing with pre-code cinema. Probably one of the biggest rewards for me as a film fan as I’ve embarked on…

Downstairs

The change from silent films to talkies had a big effect on many Hollywood stars. For each one that made the transition smoothly, there were many many more who struggled. John Gilbert was one such actor. He was a suave, handsome, performer known as “The Great Lover.” At times his popularity rivaled even Rudolph Valentino.…