Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Around the Blogosphere This Week

Miscellaneous bits of news and fun stuff from around the Internet...a little later in the week than usual due to a busy schedule!

...Last Thursday, June 12th, was the centennial of the birth of William Lundigan. Lundigan was an immensely likeable actor especially effective as men of integrity in films such as FOLLOW ME QUIETLY (1949), THE HOUSE ON TELEGRAPH HILL (1951), and the very fine Americana I'D CLIMB THE HIGHEST MOUNTAIN (1951), but he was also effective as an amoral killer in INFERNO (1953). He also starred in an utterly charming musical which deserves to be better known, I'LL GET BY (1951). Off the screen Lundigan served in the Marines during WWII; he was married for three decades before his untimely passing at the age of 61 in 1975.

...Links to reviews of additional William Lundigan movies: WIVES UNDER SUSPICION (1938), THREE SMART GIRLS GROW UP (1939), THREE CHEERS FOR THE IRISH (1940), EAST OF THE RIVER (1940), NORTHWEST RANGERS (1942), DISHONORED LADY (1947), THE INSIDE STORY (1947), MYSTERY IN MEXICO (1948), MOTHER DIDN'T TELL ME (1950), ELOPEMENT (1951), DOWN AMONG THE SHELTERING PALMS (1953), and RIDERS TO THE STARS (1954). I encourage my readers who aren't familiar with William Lundigan to check out some of his movies.

...My "snail mail" letter was read near the end of the June 10th Warner Archive podcast, and in response to my query I received great news: There should be more George O'Brien Westerns coming from the Archive by 2015!

...The Criterion Collection made an announcement that after experimenting with Blu-ray/DVD combo packs for the past few months, they'll be returning to separate Blu-ray and DVD releases starting with the September lineup.

...Speaking of Criterion, it was rumored on Twitter the other day that the annual half-price Criterion sale at Barnes & Noble starts July 1st. As always, I'll post a notice here when the sale gets underway!

...Also at Criterion, a brief but interesting look at how Japanese director Yasujiro Ozu shared his love for movies by incorporating movie posters into the set decoration in several of his movies.

...Raquel and KC haves reviewed the interesting new book on musicals, DANGEROUS RHYTHM by Richard Barrios, at their blogs Out of the Past and Classic Movies. And if you missed it last weekend, my review is here.

...Kevin writes about Victor Mature and Rita Hayworth in MY GAL SAL (1942) at Kevin's Movie Corner. I haven't seen that one in years!

...Caftan Woman shared a delightful post about her extended family taking her little niece Lenny to her very first big screen movie, Buster Keaton in THE NAVIGATOR (1924).

...I own more books on GONE WITH THE WIND (1939) than any other movie. Another one is coming out this September: THE MAKING OF GONE WITH THE WIND by Steve Wilson will be published by the University of Texas Press. It will have a foreward by TCM's Robert Osborne.

...2014 movies I reviewed earlier this year which are now out on Blu-ray and DVD: JACK RYAN: SHADOW RECRUIT (2014) and NON-STOP (2014) came out last week and THE LEGO MOVIE (2014) was released today.

...From Robby at Dear Old Hollywood: Movie locations for MGM's CASS TIMBERLANE (1947) starring Spencer Tracy and Lana Turner.

...I seem to be seeing a lot of Wyatt Earp movies lately; here's Deb on James Garner in HOUR OF THE GUN (1967) at Sidewalk Crossings. Haven't seen that one in many years.

...Last year I had the joy of visiting Monument Valley, site of the filming of many favorite films including SHE WORE A YELLOW RIBBON (1949). Jennifer Garlen writes about the movie at Virtual Virago...and she's absolutely right about Ben Johnson!

...I thought the Universal Western FOUR GUNS TO THE BORDER (1954), starring Rory Calhoun and Colleen Miller, was terrific. At 50 Westerns From the 50s Toby has some great photos from the set, including actor Richard Carlson at work directing Calhoun and Miller.

...Attention Southern Californians: One of the series coming to UCLA this summer is Hollywood Exiles in Europe. It will include titles such as Jules Dassin's NIGHT AND THE CITY (1950) and RIFIFI (1955) and Cy Endfield's HELL DRIVERS (1957), which I reviewed last year.

...Notable Passings in Sports: Two players who have meant a lot to me as a baseball fan passed away in the last few days, both of them far too young. Former Dodger pitcher Bob Welch passed away at his home in nearby Seal Beach on June 9th, at the age of 57. Angels manager Mike Scioscia, who as a Dodgers catcher played with Welch, missed last Saturday's game in order to attend his old teammate's funeral. Take a trip down memory lane and watch Welch versus Jackson in 1978, one of the most epic at-bats in history of the World Series...Hall of Famer and longtime San Diego Padre Tony Gwynn has died of cancer at the age of 54. Gwynn was a star at Long Beach Poly High School. His brother Chris was a Dodger for several years. Here's Vin Scully reminiscing about Tony, known as one of the nicest guys in baseball.

...More Notable Passings: Actress Ruby Dee has passed on at 91. One of her early film roles was Anthony Mann's great period "train noir," THE TALL TARGET (1951)...Carla Laemmle, the niece of Universal Studios founder Carl Laemmle, has died at 104...Before there were Leonard Maltin movie rating books, there was Stephen Scheuer's Movies on TV. Scheuer's rating books were some of the first movie reference books I remember reading, and I continue to use the last edition of MOVIES ON TV today. Scheuer has died at the age of 88. I'll always be appreciative of the great reference source he provided. Particularly in those days before IMDb Scheuer and Maltin were absolutely invaluable.

Have a great week!


Blogger Caftan Woman said...

Thanks for the nod and for implanting a vision of William Lundigan's charming smile which will brighten my day. Also, as always, for pointing me in the right direction for good reading.

PS: Good news about our buddy George.

7:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nice to hear there is a new book about Gone With The Wind. It must be about the most written about film ever.

9:56 AM  
Blogger KC said...

Thanks for the hat tip. That Barrios books is one of the best I've read so far this year.

9:58 PM  
Blogger Moira Finnie said...

I was thinking of William Lundigan just last night as I relished "The Sea Hawk" (1940), when he appeared among The Albatross' crew in one of his first A production movies at Warners. A native of the Syracuse area(upstate NY boys are kinda sweet), I always have to turn away when things go awry for the fresh-faced "Danny Logan, Seaman" character in that tale. At the beginning, he never fails to have a laugh in his voice when speaking his few lines.

I think that Lundigan's seemingly easygoing, clean-cut likability may have been one of the initial reasons for his success in film.

Later, I was moved to learn that in real life his choice to serve in the Marines during WWII (with time on Okinawa) dramatically affected his career momentum, and earned him the enmity of heavyweight moguls. Returning to a rapidly changing Hollywood, he apparently did everything that came his way--and even worked publicly to try to secure the rights of enlisted men in court martials in the military, writing letters to Gen. Omar Bradley to request that they be tried by their peers, not their officers. Thank you for remembering him on his centenary.

8:59 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

Thanks to you all so much for your notes -- I'm so glad to know others appreciate William Lundigan. Thanks for sharing the additional background, Moira!

KC, I agree, I enjoyed reading the Barrios book very much.

Caftan Woman, you can be sure I'll share the news here when the Archive releases more George O'Brien!

Best wishes,

1:24 PM  

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