Wednesday, June 23, 2021

William S Hart, 75 Years -- June 23, 2021

Moving Picture World, 21-October-1916

Western start William S Hart died 75 years ago today, on 23-June-1946. Hart was a Shakespearean actor who had played Messala in the original 1899 stage production of Ben-Hur.  In 1914, at the age of 49 or 50, he started acting in movies and quickly became one of the first big western stars.  He often played what was called a good-bad man, a criminal who reformed because of the love of a good woman. 

Bad guys quickly learned not to mess around with William S Hart.  Hell's Hinges is one of his easiest movies to see.  It is not what one would call a laugh riot. 

Fritzi of Movies Silently dedicated the month of December, 2014 to Bill Hart to honor what would have been his 150th birthday.:

Motion Picture News, 11-June-1921

Motion Picture News, 25-June-1921

Monday, June 21, 2021

Judy Holliday and Jane Russell 100 -- June 21, 2021

I was surprised to learn that Judy Holliday and Jane Russell were born on the same day 100 years ago, 21-June-1921. 

Jane Russell was an actress who overcame a lot of jokes about her appearance to have a good career as an actress and a singer.
Some years ago a San Francisco theater revived her only 3-D movie, The French Line. I remember seeing all the peoples' heads ducking when she turned around. Sorry Ms Russell, I had to repeat that story.

Judy Holliday was wonderful in Born Yesterday and Bells are Ringing. She often played stupid, but she was exceptionally intelligent. She died far too young.

Sunday, June 20, 2021

Happy Father's Day, 2021 -- June 20, 2021

Happy Fathers' Day to all my fellow fathers. I miss my dad. And I miss my father-in-law. I haven't had anyone for whom to buy a card for a long time. I am lucky to have a great daughter and son-in-law.

When I read the book To Kill a Mockingbird and then saw the movie, Atticus Finch reminded me of my father.  My dad rarely lectured about what was right or how to do things.  He mostly led by example.  His example showed me how to be honest and brave and to try to do the right thing.   I hope I have come close to setting a similar example as a father. 

Saturday, June 19, 2021

Oscar Micheaux -- Symbol of the Unconquered -- June 19, 2021


Omaha Monitor, 23-June-1921

Oscar Micheaux was a pioneer in producing what were known as race films. His fourth feature film was Symbol of the Unconquered. For some reason, the film is mentioned twice in the same column in the Omaha Monitor, an African-American owned newspaper.

Omaha Monitor, 23-June-1921

On June 17, 2021 President Joe Biden signed a law making Juneteenth a national holiday. 

Thursday, June 17, 2021

They Are Filled With What the Name Suggests -- July 17, 2021


Motion Picture News, 04-June-1921

Marcel Perez was probably born in Spain and began appearing in films for Pathé Frères in France. In 1910, he signed with Ambrosio Films in Turino, Italy. The first set of films includes five films he made for Ambrosio. He played a character called Robinet. The movies are fun and Perez shows a nice goofy quality. "Robinet's White Suit" works a nice series of variations on an old gag. After Italy entered World War One in 1915, Perez went to America and starred in films and directed there. This was unusual because most people who starred in film comedies in Europe did not succeed when they moved to America.

Perez did very well, appearing under a variety of character names including Bungles, Tweedledum, Twee-Dee, Tweedy and Dweedledum.

Mirth is a good name for a company that makes comedies.

Back in 2016, Undercrank Productions, producers of the Accidentally Preserved and Musty Suffer series, made The Marcel Perez Collection, a tribute which includes movies from all the countries where he worked.

Wednesday, June 16, 2021

Ned Beatty, RIP -- June 16, 2021

Actor Ned Beatty has died. He was good in everything I saw or heard him in.

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Tom Mix -- The Amazing Tale of Three Strange Comrades -- June 15, 2021


East Oregonian, 07-June-1921

100 years ago this month, Tom Mix was appearing in The Untamed, "The Amazing Tale of Three Strange Comrades -- a Man, a Horse and a Dog."

Albuquerque Evening Herald, 14-June-1921

Tom drives a stagecoach in A Ridin' Romeo. "The Romance of a Cowboy Who Tried to Do Right but Always Got Wrong."

Imperial Valley Express, 17-June-1921

Tom Mix means business in A Ridin' Romeo.

Clovis News, 09-June-1921

Tom and dog in The Road Demon. I wonder if it is the same dog who appeared with Tom and Tony in The Untamed.

Albuquerque Evening Herald, 14-June-1921

I thought Tom might not mind if I threw in a contemporary western star and a kid. Art Acord appeared in many silent films, but did not make the transition to talkies. He served in France during World War One and was decorated for bravery. "That Wonderful Boy," Breezy Eason was B Reeves Eason Jr, son of director B Reeves Eason Sr.