20 October 2012

I watched the complete "Pillow Talk" with Doris Day and Rock Hudson...

...(not to mention Tony Randall, and Thelma Ritter) for the first time last night (having seen only clips previously), and I must admit I was entertained indeed.
     If I were intelligent at all, I'd be well over feeling amazed at how good Doris Day is (since I seem to re-make this "discovery" every time I watch her in something)!  And I don't know the current state of popular familiarity with Rock Hudson -- i.e., Has his AIDS-related death kept him and his career somewhat in the spotlight (or kept him from it) or is he ripe for a renaissance? -- but, man, is he fun to watch on screen.   
     Tony Randall was such a talented comedian, and his funny take on the plight of millionaires has a political currency that's almost scary, while Thelma Ritter plays the drunken worldly spinster like nobody's business.
     The telephone party-line plot makes the film seem like it was made 200 years ago (as opposed to 1959), but the girl-hates-rude-boy-so-boy-pretends-to-be-a-polite-Texan plot works as well as the best mistaken-identity farces.

     Earlier in the day, as part of the Classic Fridays Film Series at CCSU, I saw Mr Smith Goes to Washington (1939) with Jimmy Stewart, Jean Arthur (to whom Georgia Engel should have to pay royalties every time she opens her mouth), Claude Raines, Edward Arnold, Harry Caray, and Thomas Mitchell, et alia, and, as a CCSU colleague pointed out after the screening, while the technology at play in the plot may date that film, as well, the social interaction at its heart makes it, too, as timely as ever.

Long live classic Hollywood.  

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