TCMFF 2021: DOCTOR X (1932) + The Horror Films of Michael Curtiz short doc

 DOCTOR X (1932) © TCM Classic Film Festival 2021

Late Thursday night/very early Friday aka 1:30 a.m. Eastern, you can catch the TCM premiere of the recently restored Doctor X (1932).

I’ve always had a soft spot for two-strip Technicolor, and this particular film is a fun, appealing hybrid of horror and screwball comedy. For the Classic Film Festival, TCM has paired it with a short doc about director Michael Curtiz’ horror oeuvre. More after the jump!

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What A Character! Ninth Annual Blogathon

The anticipation is over! Today we bring you the 9th annual What A Character Blogathon, hosted by yours truly, Paula of Paula’s Cinema Club (on Twitter @Paula_Guthat), and my co-hosts, the classic film-loving ladies Kellee of Outspoken and Freckled (@IrishJayhawk66), and Aurora of Once Upon A Screen (@CitizenScreen).

This annual event celebrates the supporting actors who are ostensibly there to bolster the lead but more often than not steal the scene. From the frustrated hotel house detective or the reliably sarcastic maid to the cigar-chomping stage manager or the reliable sidekick — character roles are often our favorite performances in a film. So we invited bloggers to scribe on their favorite characters. Let’s begin after the jump…

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Ninth Annual What A Character Blogathon is Dec. 5 – Call for Entries

Borrowing a catchphrase from our favorite home of the classics, Turner Classic Movies, Kellee of Outspoken & Freckled / @IrishJayHawk66), Aurora, of Once Upon a Screen / @CitizenScreen), and myself Paula of Paula’s Cinema Club / @Paula_Guthat) dedicate a blogathon to character actors for the ninth! consecutive year. To the faces, the laughs, and the drama presented by these wonderful actors whose names all too often go unrecognized we dedicate WHAT A CHARACTER! 2020.

All the details plus Who’s Who in this graphic after the jump!
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What A Character! 2019 – Day 3

Subsequent to Day 1 over at Outspoken and Freckled, and Day 2 at Once Upon A Screen, I am presenting Day 3 of our annual tribute to the names below the title, those scene-stealing supporting players who add immeasurably to our favorite films.

First up, Gary Pratt takes a good look — literally — at Donald Pleasance, particularly as half of a beautiful friendship in The Great Escape in a guest post on Outspoken and Freckled.

Lesley at Second Sight Cinema looks at late-blooming Charles Coburn, who nonetheless became “as indispensable to the movies as he had been to the American stage for nearly four decades.”

Aurora at Once Upon A Screen… profiles another late bloomer, the inimitable Majorie Main, whose “physical look, her mannerisms, dry wit, and that voice! all made a package that was not easy to forget.”

The Lady Eve shines the spotlight on Joyce Compton, declaring, “there’s more to [her] story than her turns as scatterbrained, Southern-fried blondes.”

Kellee at Outspoken & Freckled sheds some very deserved light on Frank McHugh’s life and career.

To be continued with more character actors to come…

This post is part of the What A Character! 2019 Blogathon.

Announcing the What A Character! 2019 Blogathon

It’s hard to believe we’ve been hosting this blogathon for eight years now! But perhaps it isn’t that shocking — after all, discussing those scene-stealing character actors is a crowd-pleasing pastime amongst cinephiles.

Year after year, it’s an event we all look forward to. Wise-cracking Eve Arden, nurturing Louise Beavers, sassy Thelma Ritter, double-take pro Edward Everett Horton, tart-tongued Edna May Oliver, gravelly-voiced Eddie “Rochester” Anderson, fatherly Charles Coburn, frazzled Franklin Pangborn, bullfrog voiced, barrel-chested Eugene Pallette, cigar-chomping Ned Sparks… these and so many more lovable character actors are who we look forward to seeing as our dearest ole chums. Couldn’t we all use a trusted sidekick? All the details after the jump.

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THE GENTLEMEN looks decent

STX dropped the trailer for Guy Ritchie’s upcoming film, The Gentlemen, earlier today. It stars Matthew McConaughey, Henry Golding, Charlie Hunnam, and the almost unrecognizable Hugh Grant, who sounds as unlike himself as he can get. Seriously, I watched the trailer at least twice because I couldn’t believe it was him. This trailer represents a dollop of hope for those like myself who’ve been awaiting another RockNRolla, which I consider to be the apotheosis (so far) of the director’s patented crime/comedy hybrid. (RnR is now a shocking 11 years old, having been released in 2008.) The plot seems to be classic Ritchie (paraphrasing the synopsis): McConaughey is a pot kingpin who wants out. The others plot, scheme, bribe and blackmail in order to take over his piece of the action before he’s ready to leave. Will The Gentlemen measure up? We’ll all find out on January 24, 2020. Check out the trailer and pix below. PS: Looks like the film was formerly known as “Toff Guys,” which I prefer to the final title, but I understand that might not have translated on this side of the pond.

Oscar Musings

We made it. As I type this, the 91st Academy Awards ceremony is happening. The Academy has a lot of work to do before the 92nd. There are three four tasks that, if completed, would save this august organization and revive its beleaguered ceremony…all is revealed after the jump.

The Oscars have always had their controversies and backstories. Gregory Peck, Sophia Loren, Joan Crawford (accepting for Anne Bancroft), and Maximillian Schell at the 1963 ceremony, held at Santa Monica Civic Auditorium.
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Day Two: #31DaysOfOscar Blogathon

Day 2 of 31 Days of Oscar 2019

Once upon a screen...

I’m happy to say that we approach the halfway mark of this year’s 31 Days of Oscar Blogathon without incident or controversy. As is the case with my co-hosts, I will not be hosting any posts during commercials today, my day to host this year’s event. To put you at ease here is a 1957 Oldsmobile commercial, which aired during the Academy Awards ceremony that year. I will watch it with you thereby pausing my hosting duties.

Welcome back. Before we get to today’s list of entries, you might want to visit the Announcement post, which includes the entire participant roster. Also, be sure to visit Kellee at Outspoken & Freckled and the Day One submissions. Terrific stuff there. Otherwise, I’m getting to the main course of this entry, the tributes to the movies and the people who have had relationships with Oscar…or should have had. Enjoy!

  • We begin…

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31 Days of Oscar 2019 – Day 3

While this year’s Academy Awards ceremony is officially host-less, the 31 Days of Oscar Blogathon has three! Kellee of Outspoken & Freckled, Aurora of Once Upon A Screen, and I, here at Paula’s Cinema Club have been celebrating the Oscars themselves and TCM”s tribute to same for the past seven years!

It’s almost a wrap on the third and final day, as I continue to collect the knowledge and opinions of our astute bloggers:

First up, Amanda at Old Hollywood Films focuses on Five Times the Academy Got It Right. Her picks include one of my favorites, George Sanders’ win for All About Eve; click for the rest.

Linda at Backstory: New Looks at Classic Films examines the life and career of “strikingly successful art director” Ward Ihnen.

Pale Writer analyzes Nat King Cole’s Best Song win for “Mona Lisa.”

at Crítica Retrô reviews pre-sound films’ Oscar legacy in Golden Silence: Silent Films at the Oscars.

In the Good Old Days of Classic Hollywood recounts Olivia de Havilland’s second Oscar win for The Heiress.

Check back throughout the day for additional 31 Days posts!