Saturday, June 15, 2019

Tonight's Movie: Return of the Frontiersman (1950)

I recently read a review of RETURN OF THE FRONTIERSMAN (1950) at Jeff Arnold's West, and the movie sounded like so much fun that I immediately pulled my Warner Archive DVD off the shelf.

As Arnold's review communicates, this may not be a great film but it's a solid, action-packed Warner Bros. Western which flies by in 74 minutes. Add in an appealing cast and it's definitely a fun little movie. I'm glad I finally caught up with it.

Gordon MacRae plays Logan Barrett, son of tough yet kind Sheriff Sam Barrett (Jack Holt). Sam's the type of sheriff who leaves the cells unlocked and lets his prisoners play checkers on the front porch. But at the same time, he's no pushover; when Logan gets in trouble after a fight in a saloon, the sheriff immediately holds a trial and sentences both his son and Kearney (Edwin Rand), the man Logan was brawling with, to ten days in jail.

Unfortunately Kearney later turns up dead and Logan is seen standing next to his body, so the townsfolk, including Logan's father, think the worst. Logan ends up back in jail but breaks out with the help of his friend Larrabee (Rory Calhoun), the town newspaper publisher, so that he can work to clear his name.

Eventually Logan ends up on the run, 39 STEPS style, with Janie Martin (Julie London), niece of the town doctor (Raymond Bond). Although Janie is initially angry at having to help Logan, she gradually comes to realize that he's an innocent man...but if he didn't kill Kearney, who did?

And who committed a huge stagecoach robbery witnessed by Logan and Janie?

The answers unfold quickly in this briskly told tale. This is one of those films which actually might have benefited from a few additional minutes, particularly to provide more character development for Julie London, but what made it to the screen is enjoyable.

MacRae is appealing as Logan, and in one of my favorite scenes, he even gets the chance to sing in the jailhouse. London doesn't sing in this one, but she looks lovely in a role which some sources indicate was refused by Alexis Smith.

The film reunited London and Calhoun, costars in the excellent THE RED HOUSE (1947) a handful of years before. This is one of many Westerns made by both Calhoun and Jack Holt; sadly, Holt passed away in January 1951, at the age of 62. This was one of his last few films.

An unbilled Richard Egan, in one of his earliest movies, has a noticeable role, and the cast also includes Fred Clark and John Doucette.

RETURN OF THE FRONTIERSMAN was directed by Richard L. Bare, who among other things went on to direct 11 episodes of the MAVERICK TV series, as well as the Randolph Scott-James Garner Western SHOOT-OUT AT MEDICINE BEND (1957).

The movie was filmed in Technicolor by J. Peverell Marley. It looks to have been filmed on Southern California movie ranches and locations; I'd love to know where the waterfall seen during the climactic fight is located.

The Warner Archive DVD, first made available in the Archive's earliest days roughly a decade ago, is an attractive print. There are no extras on the disc.

RETURN OF THE FRONTIERSMAN is also shown from time to time on Turner Classic Movies.

Friday, June 14, 2019

Book Review: Dutch Girl: Audrey Hepburn and World War II

Beloved movie star Audrey Hepburn is the subject of an interesting new book, DUTCH GIRL: AUDREY HEPBURN AND WORLD WAR II.

The book was written by Robert Matzen, whose last two books, FIREBALL: CAROLE LOMBARD AND THE MYSTERY OF FLIGHT 3 and MISSION: JIMMY STEWART AND THE FIGHT FOR EUROPE, focused on the intersection of WWII, film, and aviation history. I wrote about the excellent FIREBALL in 2014.

Matzen returns to WWII and film history with DUTCH GIRL, a deeply researched account of Hepburn's life in the Nazi-occupied Netherlands. In his foreword Hepburn's son, Luca Dotti, calls the book "a true gift." The book was written with Dotti's cooperation, including interviews and sharing family photos.

Hepburn spent half a decade living under Nazi occupation. Her mother and estranged father were both Nazi sympathizers, a fact Hepburn feared would be revealed once she became famous; her mother did later switch to supporting the Dutch Resistance after close relatives were executed by the Nazis.

Audrey herself, barely a teenager, worked for the Resistance, carrying messages and food to people in hiding, helping doctors, and raising money with secret dance performances. At one point her family joined others aiding a British officer who had escaped the Nazis; he spent 11 days hiding in a cupboard before the Resistance eventually smuggled him to safety.

Matzen paints a vivid picture of wartime horrors and privation, including "The Hunger Winter" of 1944-45. The author makes clear how spending such formative years living under constant threat and hardship, including severe malnutrition, would impact Hepburn for the rest of her life; for instance, reading of her difficult experiences brings a deeper understanding of her later advocacy as a UNICEF ambassador.

In telling Hepburn's story, Matzen also paints a broader portrait of life in Holland during the war, which is both fascinating and disturbing.

With few people left alive who could be interviewed about Audrey's wartime experiences, Matzen dug deeply into archives, as well as materials made available by an earlier Hepburn biographer, Barry Paris; Matzen also researched in Europe and visited relevant locations, including the site of the 1942 execution of Hepburn's uncle. He collected everything he could find which Hepburn had publicly said about the war -- 6,000 words in all -- and wove those into the narrative.

Thanks in part to the public's ongoing love for Hepburn, DUTCH GIRL has received some nice publicity including an interview with the author (seen at left) by Martha MacCallum on Fox News Channel; the interview may be watched here.

I read a softcover advance copy of the book. The final hardcover edition published by GoodKnight Books is 416 pages, with 24 pages of photos. The photos are well-reproduced on glossy paper. Extensive chapter notes are included elaborating on sources and research.

A recommended read.

Thanks to Robert Matzen and GoodKnight Books for providing a review copy of this book.

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Tonight's Movie: Under Cover of Night (1937)

A good cast enlivens UNDER COVER OF NIGHT (1937), a fairly routine but watchable MGM murder mystery.

Janet Griswald (Sara Haden) has learned her husband Marvin (Henry Daniell) is having an affair right under her nose with Tonya (Marla Shelton).

Janet makes the mistake of telling her hubby she's leaving him to enjoy life with Tonya, but she's taking the research they've spent years working on with her in a small notebook. This will put an end to Marvin's hopes of career advancement at the university.

Marvin does not take the news well, to say the least, and does away with his wife early in the film; the movie then focuses on his ensuing misdeeds and how he's brought to justice thanks to the detective work of his friend Christopher Cross (Edmund Lowe).

Marvin kills several additional people as he searches for the notebook, managing to frame Alan Shaw (a very young Dean Jagger) while he's at it. Alan's girlfriend Deb (Florence Rice) is also in danger after she locates the missing notebook.

The film's main drawback is that it spends quite a lot of time on the plotting of Marvin and Tonya, when it's Christopher and the rest of the cast who are more interesting; when the focus switches to time spent with Christopher, Alan, and Deb it's much livelier. I also particularly enjoyed Haden who has an elegant assurance in the role of Marvin's first victim.

Edmund Lowe and Florence Rice also costarred in THE BEST MAN WINS (1935) and UNDER PRESSURE (1935). I enjoy both actors very much, and it's also fun watching Jagger when he was in his early 20s. The cast also includes Harry Davenport, Nat Pendleton, Dorothy Peterson, Zeffie Tilbury, and Theodore von Eltz (who looks enough like Lowe that it's a bit confusing).

I have really come to appreciate Lowe in films such as BLACK SHEEP (1935) and SEVEN SINNERS (1936). He has a nice urbane comedic quality, a bit reminiscent of William Powell, while also sometimes hitting deeper, more dramatic notes.

Lowe passed away in 1971. I recently learned that Lowe's gravesite at San Fernando Mission Cemetery was unmarked for decades, but thanks to an online fundraiser last month, a grave marker is now in place. A photograph may be seen at the Find a Grave website.

Warning for animal-loving viewers: Marvin's evil crimes also include murdering a pet dog. While it's not overtly shown, it's nonetheless shocking. Marvin does receive his just desserts in the end.

UNDER COVER OF NIGHT runs 71 minutes. It was directed by George B. Seitz and filmed in black and white by Charles Clarke.

This film has been shown on Turner Classic Movies. It's not available on DVD.

Monday, June 10, 2019

Tonight's Movie: Portrait in Black (1960) - A Kino Lorber Blu-ray Review

Lana Turner stars in PORTRAIT IN BLACK (1960), a slickly produced murder melodrama just released on Blu-ray by Kino Lorber.

PORTRAIT IN BLACK, produced by Ross Hunter, begins with evocative opening credits designed by Wayne Fitzgerald. It then dives right into the story: Bedridden Matthew Cabot (Lloyd Nolan) is a San Francisco shipping magnate who manages to torment his wife Sheila (Turner) and all around him despite his frail health.

Sheila is in love with Matthew's doctor, David Rivera (Anthony Quinn), and before much screen time has passed, Sheila and David decide that all their problems would be solved if Matthew received just a bit too much pain medicine and gently faded out of their lives.

What sounded easy when they first discussed it quickly becomes something which torments each of their guilty consciences. What's worse, someone else seems to know what happened and begins sending them threatening letters...

Also caught up in the goings-on are Sheila's stepdaughter Cathy (Sandra Dee) and her poor but honest boyfriend Blake (John Saxon), who runs a harbor towing business and has reasons for resenting Matthew. The film was a reunion for Dee and Saxon, who were also sweethearts in THE RELUCTANT DEBUTANTE (1958) two years previously.

Potentially suspicious characters threatening Sheila and David include Howard (Richard Basehart), Matthew's unscrupulous business partner, who wants to marry Sheila; the chauffeur (Ray Walston) with financial problems, who may be alert to Sheila's comings and goings; and the housekeeper (Anna May Wong) who suddenly views Sheila with disapproval.

There's also a nice role for Lana's old pal from MGM, Virginia Grey, as Matthew's secretary; the part rather calls to mind Nina Foch's role in EXECUTIVE SUITE (1954) a few years prior. Grey also had supporting roles in Turner's BACHELOR IN PARADISE (1961), LOVE HAS MANY FACES (1965), and MADAME X (1966). I'll be reviewing Kino Lorber's release of MADAME X here in the near future.

Things get worse and worse for David and Sheila as they try to cover their tracks, and needless to say all the stress pretty much puts an end to thoughts of romance. About an hour in to the film I suddenly had a couple pretty clear guesses about what was going to happen, which proved to be correct; however, I definitely didn't see a couple of the final twists coming. The last sequence is a real nail-biter, a nightmare come to life.

It's a fairly entertaining 112 minutes, though, as indicated, somewhat predictable. Additionally, while I love watching Lana, her character spends most of the movie whining and crying, which gets to be a bit old after a while.

That said, the fun for me was the pleasure of watching a good cast, not to mention eye-catching sets and Lana's elegant wardrobe by Jean Louis. Any film starring Turner, Dee, and Grey, in particular, is going to be worth a look from me.

PORTRAIT IN BLACK was directed by Michael Gordon. The widescreen photography was by Russell Metty.

The Kino Lorber Blu-ray looks wonderful, as I have come to expect from that company. Extras include the trailer, a gallery of four additional trailers for films available from Kino Lorber, and a commentary track by Lee Gambin and Emma Westwood.

Thanks to Kino Lorber for providing a review copy of this Blu-ray.

Tonight's Movie: Twice Blessed (1945) - A Warner Archive DVD Review

Charming twins Lee and Lyn Wilde star in MGM's delightful comedy TWICE BLESSED (1945), just released on DVD by the Warner Archive.

I loved TWICE BLESSED when I first saw it back in 2012 and have been hoping for a Warner Archive release. It's finally happened, and I'm delighted that a wider audience will now be able to discover this enjoyable film.

Disney's classic THE PARENT TRAP (1961) seems to have taken more than a little inspiration from this 1945 movie about identical twins raised apart by their divorced parents.

Stephanie (Lyn Wilde), a genius, has received a sheltered upbringing from her mother Mary (Gail Patrick), a famous child psychologist. Stephanie has traveled the world with her mother in the seven years since her parents divorced, but despite her world travels and sophisticated wardrobe, Stephanie has missed out on many normal teenage experiences.

Stephanie's twin Terry (Lee Wilde) has been raised by her newspaperman father Jeff (Preston Foster) as an ordinary kid; Terry's not much for studying, but she enjoys hanging out with her friends at the malt shop and dances a great jitterbug!

The twins are reunited when Mary and Stephanie return to the States after a long absence, and the girls decide to trade places for a while to see what they've each been missing. Terry's beau Jimmy (Marshall Thompson, seen at right) is baffled by his suddenly stronger feelings for "Terry" (really Stephanie), despite the fact she seems to have lost the ability to dance, while Mickey (Jimmy Lydon) falls for "Stephanie," who is actually Terry.

Along with untangling their own romances, the twins also do their best to reunite their parents before Mary makes the mistake of marrying stuffy Senator Pringle (Richard Gaines).

I find this 76-minute film great fun. The entire cast is attractive, starting with longtime favorites Patrick and Foster as the parents. Patrick exudes elegance and intelligence as Mary, while Foster is everyone's ideal good-natured dad -- and possibly husband.

It's wonderful to see a story like this where no special effects are needed to portray identical twins; even better, the Wildes are effervescent and altogether quite delightful. Their other biggest roles were in ANDY HARDY'S BLONDE TROUBLE (1944) for MGM and CAMPUS HONEYMOON (1948) for Republic Pictures, and they also appeared in small roles in several other movies. I wish their film careers had been longer!

Lyn and Lee married brothers, musicians James and Thomas Cathcart. Lee passed on in September 2015 and Lyn in September 2016. You can learn more about them at this Wilde Twins website, and there's a great article by Annette Bochenek at her site Hometowns to Hollywood. Annette's piece includes pictures of her with Lyn, who was quite lovely in her 90s, and photographs of Lyn's scrapbook.

The cast of TWICE BLESSED also includes Jean Porter, who played an energetic teenager in a number of '40s films. Look for John Dehner as a radio announcer and Arthur Space as a contest judge. Also in the cast are Douglas Cowan and Gloria Hope (seen here with Foster).

One of the intriguing aspects of the film is how well-adjusted everyone seems to be despite a long separation; in the modern era the girls would no doubt be portrayed as teeming with resentment over a lack of relationship with one of their parents.

The movie has some ideas about women's roles which are now considered dated, but that reflection of its era is also part of what makes it interesting, along with jukeboxes and jitterbugging, a radio quiz show with Ethel Smith at the organ, and the like.

Some viewers may also wish to know in advance there is a very brief blackface scene as the girls utilize it as a disguise when trying to prevent an attempted blackmail.

TWICE BLESSED was directed by Harry Beaumont. It was filmed in black and white by Ray June.

The Warner Archive DVD is a nice print with good sound. The disc includes the trailer.

I like this film a great deal. Recommended.

Thanks to the Warner Archive for providing a review copy of this DVD. Warner Archive releases are MOD (manufactured on demand) and may be ordered from the Warner Archive Collection at the WBShop or from any online retailers where DVDs and Blu-rays are sold.

Sunday, June 09, 2019

Tonight's Movie: Summer Stock (1950) - A Warner Archive Blu-ray Review

Judy Garland and Gene Kelly star in the MGM musical SUMMER STOCK (1950), recently released on Blu-ray by the Warner Archive.

Like the Warner Archive Blu-ray release of MGM's BRIGADOON (1954), this new Blu-ray looks absolutely fantastic. What a treat to revisit this longtime favorite with the movie looking and sounding so wonderful!

Garland plays Jane Falbury, a struggling farmer. Jane has just wangled a loan for a tractor from the father (Ray Collins) of her longtime suitor Orville (Eddie Bracken), but when she arrives home with it she discovers her farm has been taken over by a theatrical company headed by Joe Ross (Kelly).

It seems that Jane's flighty sister Abigail (Gloria DeHaven) has returned to the farm with the show business bug -- and a part in the new musical being developed by Joe. The show has a shoestring budget so Abigail offered the farm as a place for rehearsals.

Jane initially tries to throw the actors off the premises but relents when she realizes that if the actors spend a couple hours a day doing chores she end up coming out ahead at a time when she can use some extra help.

Complications ensue when Orville is scandalized by "show business" people taking up residence at Jane's farm; things get even more chaotic when Abigail gets too big for her britches and bolts for New York with her leading man (Hans Conried in a small but amusing performance). In true "Let's put on a show!" style, Joe takes over the lead role and convinces Jane that she can learn Abigail's part in a handful of days before the production's out-of-town tryout in the barn.

The plot is a simple, tried-and-true musical theme, with "Save the farm!" thrown in on the side, but it's completely engaging, played with commitment by a terrific cast. The screenplay by George Wells and Sy Gomberg is very good for its type, with some memorable lines and amusing readings from the actors; one of my favorite moments is when an exhausted Jane tells off Orville mid-rehearsal. She's delightfully funny.

Ace musical director Charles Walters provides peppy direction and keeps things moving for all of the film's 108 minutes, while the Technicolor photography by Robert Planck is just right, pretty to look at while not overwhelming the farm setting.

With the exception of Saul Chaplin's more-painful-than-funny "Heavenly Music," performed by Kelly and Phil Silvers, the score is most enjoyable, starting with Garland's opening Harold Arlen-Mack Gordon anthem "If You Feel Like Singing, Sing." Arlen and Gordon also wrote "Happy Harvest," the terrific song Garland sings on the tractor; "Dig Dig Dig For Your Dinner," performed by Kelly and company in the farm kitchen; and Garland's beautiful solo "Friendly Star," sung as feelings are beginning to develop between Jane and Joe.

Best of all, the film contains two of the greatest numbers from MGM musicals, Kelly's "newspaper dance" with a squeaky board and a paper, and Garland's "Get Happy," by Arlen and Ted Koehler. Both are sheer bliss for musical fans.

Although the latter song was famously shot shortly after the main production of the film had concluded, I noticed that its backdrop appears in the background of a dramatic scene earlier in the film, which was interesting. I also noticed a continuity issue for the first time, that just before the end of the film Garland is costumed for "Heavenly Music," in which she doesn't appear, and when she and Kelly appear for the finale, ostensibly seconds later, they're wearing completely different costumes. That was a quick costume change!

In addition to Bracken, Collins, and Conried, the movie has Marjorie Main as the farm cook, performing the role with sarcastic, brash flair as only Marjorie Main could do. (Wait till you see her "wake up call" for the actors!) This was one of four terrific films Carleton Carpenter had small yet memorable roles in in 1950, the others being THREE LITTLE WORDS (1950), FATHER OF THE BRIDE (1950), and TWO WEEKS WITH LOVE (1950), where he performed "Aba Daba Honeymoon" with Debbie Reynolds.

The dance cast includes Nita Bieber as bookworm featured dancer Sarah Higgins; I noted Bieber's passing at the end of my February link roundup. Another of the dancers is Dorothy Tuttle, easily recognized by sharp-eyed MGM musical viewers from her roles in MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS (1944), where she appears prominently in "The Trolley Song," and as one of THE HARVEY GIRLS (1946). Many years ago I had a chance to chat with Tuttle at a gathering honoring director Walters, an evening which was quite a thrill for this longtime MGM fan.

The dance company also includes John Brascia, who danced the "Abraham" number with Vera-Ellen in WHITE CHRISTMAS (1954) and Jimmy Thompson, who played Charlie in BRIGADOON. Kelly's assistants Carol Haney and Jeanne Coyne (his future wife) are billed but I have trouble picking Haney out of the company.

Extras duplicated from the original SUMMER STOCK DVD release include the trailer, a featurette, an outtake song, a Pete Smith short, and the Tex Avery cartoon THE CUCKOO CLOCK (1950).

The Warner Archive has been releasing MGM musicals on Blu-ray at a relatively slow pace, but when they do come out, they are spectacular! This release is highly recommended.

Look for a review of the Warner Archive Blu-ray release of SEVEN BRIDES FOR SEVEN BROTHERS (1954) here in the future...and let's cross our fingers for more Warner Archive MGM musical Blu-rays in the future. My fervent hope is for a Blu-ray of THE HARVEY GIRLS at some point!

Related posts: TCM Friday Night Spotlight: Charles Walters and Book Review: Charles Walters: The Director Who Made Hollywood Dance.

Thanks to the Warner Archive for providing a review copy of this Blu-ray. Warner Archive Blu-rays may be ordered from the WBShop.

Saturday, June 08, 2019

Quick Preview of TCM in September

The September schedule for Turner Classic Movies was recently released!

The September Star of the Month is Sidney Poitier. Over 20 of Poitier's films will be shown on Tuesday evenings in September.

This is Poitier's second time as Star of the Month; he was previously honored in July 2002.

The TCM Spotlight in September is focused on college football, with movies centered around that theme airing on Friday evenings.

There are also special series on James Bond films and the centennial of United Artists.

September's Noir Alley titles are THE BIG CLOCK (1948), NOCTURNE (1946), THE WOMAN ON THE BEACH (1947), and THE HARDER THEY FALL (1956).

Treasures From the Disney Vault makes its quarterly appearance on September 2nd with a fabulous lineup which includes FUN AND FANCY FREE (1947), THE LOVE BUG (1968), THE HAPPIEST MILLIONAIRE (1967), and SNOWBALL EXPRESS (1972).

Here's hoping that Treasures From the Disney Vault will be able to continue on TCM after the Disney+ streaming service begins in November.

The Saturday morning lineup will include Ruth Roman in the serial JUNGLE QUEEN (1945) starting on September 21st.

Filmmakers receiving multifilm tributes in September include Jean Hersholt, Carol Lynley, Akira Kurosawa, Deborah Kerr, Gary Cooper, Ruth Chatterton, Mickey Rooney, and Lauren Bacall.

September themes include teachers, Mexico, MGM musicals, '60s romantic comedies, '60s espionage films, heist films, the American South, and what might be called "madness and murder." There are also many sci-fi and fantasy films airing in September.

I'll be posting more detailed information about the September schedule here around the end of August.

In the meantime, Jane Powell continues as the June Star of the Month, with Glenn Ford celebrated in July and Summer Under the Stars in August.

Friday, June 07, 2019

Friday at Disneyland: Opening Day of Galaxy's Edge, Part 4

Time for the fourth and final look at the Opening Day of Galaxy's Edge at Disneyland on May 31, 2019.

The previous photo posts in this series may be found at Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3. Those posts include coverage of our arrival in Galaxy's Edge as it opened to the public, the Smugglers Run ride, shopping, and more.

In this post we'll look at some of the other sights around Batuu. There are two distinctive areas in the land; Black Spire Outpost, where the Millennium Falcon is located, is controlled by the First Order, while further down a path there is a forested area of ancient ruins which is home to the Resistance.

The Rise of the Resistance ride opening later this year will be located in the Resistance encampment area:

An X-wing is parked nearby:

And also an A-wing:

Some random sights seen on Batuu:

These storm troopers were spotted back in the First Order area:

The biggest restaurant in Galaxy's Edge is Docking Bay 7 in Black Spire Outpost.

We shared the Kaadu ribs and Fried Endorian Tip-yip (chicken).

I thought the ribs, which came with an excellent blueberry corn muffin tucked underneath, were very good. They were quite tender, and I really liked the sauce. The seasoning sprinkled on top gave it a nice crunch texture contrasting with the soft ribs.

Some folks who turned out to be from WDW News Today had bought every item on the menu and set it up outside the restaurant for a photo shoot. We didn't realize who they were until we later saw their review online, and at first thought the display had been set up by Disney! We very much appreciated being able to grab a couple photos ourselves.

Be sure to check out the detailed Docking Bay 7 review at WDW News Today. Another angle looking at the menu options, including the desserts front and center:

This crate seen in Docking Bay 7 has an 80 on it, in honor of the year THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK (1980) was released.

Below are crates seen outside the restaurant, which are labeled with 77 and 83, the years of STARS WARS (1977) and RETURN OF THE JEDI (1983).

A zoomed-in look at the crates outside the restaurant. (Click any photo to enlarge it for a closer look.) More on special details seen on Batuu may be found in an article from All Ears Net.

All too soon it was time to take the path from the Resistance hideout area which gradually transforms into the familiar environs of Critter Country and return to reality...if one can call the rest of Disneyland "reality"! There are still many things we need to do next time we're "on planet," including visiting Oga's Cantina, sampling Blue Milk, and using the phone app to translate signs.

The Batuu experience is so detailed that there's even a special language used on Batuu. We picked up a bit of it on our first visit; "bright suns" means good morning, while "rising moons" means good night. When shopkeepers say goodbye they wish you a "good journey," and so on. There are a number of unique phrases used, and I found that quite enjoyable.

As we left, we again saw Disneyland President Josh D'Amaro, along with Disneyland Vice President Kris Theiler. When we complimented them on how well organized our experience had been, Josh credited Kris with the operational success. Along with everything else last Friday, we appreciated that Disneyland's topmost brass were in the park alongside the guests and so accessible to share our feedback and appreciation.

Here's the last design of three Galaxy's Edge shirts I bought on opening day. I picked this up at Pooh Corner in Critter Country, one of several Disneyland shops which carries the merchandise.

Elsewhere Disneyland was remarkably uncrowded, and it's remained so for the past week. I suspect the crowds will descend once the Galaxy's Edge reservation period ends after June 23rd. At that point Disneyland will have a real challenge controlling the crowds, but hopefully all they're learning during this "trial run" period will make the wider opening a success.

In summation, Disneyland exceeded all my expectations with Galaxy's Edge, and I can't wait to return. Until then, "May the Spires keep you!"