Monday, April 4, 2011

Of Davis, Coward, Malle and Moreau

Nothing special. Just a mélange of images from the past couple of weeks of film watching...Of Bette Davis in a tight-fitting yet elegant dress – and her sardonic quips – in All About Eve (1950, Joseph L. Mankiewicz). And a bejewelled very young Marilyn Monroe looking on....Any Wednesday (1966, Robert Ellis Miller) with Jason Robards, Dean Jones, Jane Fonda and Rosemary Murphy, a perfect 1960s (and by today’s standards politically incorrect and crude) farce about a Manhattan cheating executive (Robards as John Cleves) and no doubt an inspiration for the current TV hit Mad Men.....The monumental British war drama In Which We Serve (1942) co-directed by Noel Coward (who also stars fabulously as Capt. Kinross) and David Lean (his directorial debut) about life on ship and on the home front during the fearful early days on World War II when Britain was still pretty much on its own against the Nazi onslaught. I don’t know if I’ve ever seen actors depict fearful, war-weary yet brave servicemen more realistically.....Louis Malle’s first film Elevator to the Gallows (1958) with Jeanne Moreau and Maurice Ronet, about two intertwined murders. Plot holes notwithstanding the film is suspenseful (with a soundtrack by Miles Davis) and reminiscent of classic New Wave cinema though Malle wasn’t really associated with La Nouvelle Vague.....and Jeanne Moreau again in François Truffaut's Jules and Jim (1962), a strange yet engaging story about a love triangle.....

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