Saturday, January 08, 2022

Around the Blogosphere This Week

Miscellaneous bits of news and fun stuff from around the internet...

...Happy New Year! Let's dive right in to some of the latest news. First up: There's a new book on Ruth Roman coming from Derek Sculthorpe for McFarland Books. Ruth Roman: A Career Portrait will be released sometime in 2022. Sculthorpe has also written books on Claire Trevor, Edmond O'Brien, and Brian Donlevy.

...The Sundance and Palm Springs film festivals have decided to cancel due to the Omicron variant. (The Sundance festival will instead take place online.) The Noir City Film Festival scheduled to take place in Oakland later this month has suspended ticket sales to keep the venue at 50% of capacity and has discussed a potential refund plan in the event of cancellation. Meanwhile, Noir City Seattle is currently scheduled to take place February 11-17. (January 11th Update: The Noir City Film Festival scheduled to take place in Oakland this month has now been postponed.)

...Musso & Frank Grill in Hollywood has also temporarily closed again.

...Some of the interesting titles recently announced for Blu-ray releases from Kino Lorber:

*A Francis the Talking Mule 7-Film Collection from brand-new 2K masters, coming this year.

*NOW AND FOREVER (1934) starring Gary Cooper, Carole Lombard, and Shirley Temple will be released March 22nd.

*Two of Rock Hudson '60s comedies, MAN'S FAVORITE SPORT? (1964) with Paula Prentiss and STRANGE BEDFELLOWS (1965) with Gina Lollobrigida, will be released March 8th.

*A pair of Robert Siodmak's German films will be out in March; FAREWELL (1930) will be released on March 15th and THE DEVIL STRIKES AT NIGHT (1957) on March 29th. FAREWELL will have a commentary track by Anthony Slide and THE DEVIL STRIKES AT NIGHT by Imogen Sara Smith. The latter film is one of the only films I saw theatrically in 2020, thanks to the Noir City Film Festival.

*NEXT TIME WE LOVE (1938) starring Margaret Sullavan, James Stewart, and Ray Milland, is "coming soon," with another new 2K master.

...Coming to Blu-ray in February from the Warner Archive Collection: GOLD DIGGERS OF 1933 (1933) and THE THREE MUSKETEERS (1948).

...Since the date's almost here, a reminder of information I first shared last October: The Little Rascals: The ClassicFlix Restorations, Volume 4 will be released on January 18th.

...Here's Leonard Maltin's take on the new production of WEST SIDE STORY (1961).

...Bing Crosby's former home in Rancho Mirage is on sale for $4.5 million. People has a few photos.

...Hadley Meares has written an article for LAist on the recent gutting of Hollywood's historic Pig 'N Whistle restaurant. Having enjoyed eating there many times, I'm sad and rather incredulous about the whole thing. The last time I ate there was March 11, 2020, before a Noir City Hollywood screening of THE LONG HAUL (1957); later that night California shut down.

...Having seen several trailers for it in theaters last year, I was surprised that Disney has decided to pull Pixar's SEEING RED (2022) off its planned March 11th release date. It will instead be available at no extra charge on the Disney+ streaming service. The abrupt change so close to the scheduled theatrical release is a bit of a mystery, though I have to say that the trailers were not appealing.

...At Out of the Past Raquel Stecher has reviewed the new book HOLLYWOOD VICTORY: THE MOVIES, STARS, AND STORIES OF WORLD WAR II by Christian Blauvelt. I also plan to review that book here, hopefully in the fairly near future.

...There's a fabulous new series scheduled at MOMA in New York City from February 1st through 19th: Dames, Janes, Dolls and Canaries: Woman Stars of the Pre-Code Era. The films were selected by Farran Smith Nehme, who shared additional information on the series in a thread on Twitter. It's a wonderful lineup which includes the two-strip Technicolor film FOLLOW THRU (1930) which I was fortunate to see at UCLA in 2015. (As a side note, after seeing relatively few classic films onscreen over the last couple of years, I'm very glad that I pushed myself to drive up to Los Angeles for so many films in the preceding decade; I've really missed those screenings, especially at my favorite venue, UCLA's Billy Wilder Theater.)

...Here's a roundup of several interesting classic film reviews!  Jessica watched a favorite comedy, MIDNIGHT (1939), for her "Watching 1939" series at Comet Over Hollywood...At Watching Classic Movies KC reviewed the new Warner Archive Blu-ray releases of the pre-Codes MARY STEVENS, M.D. (1933) and DINNER AT EIGHT (1933)...At Trailers From Hell Glenn Erickson has reviewed another Warner Archive Blu-ray of a film from the same year, LADIES THEY TALK ABOUT (1933) with Barbara Stanwyck...and Colin has reviewed LEAVE HER TO HEAVEN (1945) at Riding the High Country.

...I happened across an article from last summer which ran in the Oregon newspaper Willamette Week on a favorite film, CANYON PASSAGE (1946). The article includes an interview with Western historian Toby Roan...and speaking of Toby, here's the list he posted last month of the films which are just about definite to be in his upcoming book 50 WESTERNS FROM THE 50S.  Lots of great viewing listed there!

...A number of bloggers have shared some of their favorite viewing discoveries of the past year. At Journeys in Darkness and Light Andy Wolverton has written about both his Best Film Noir Discoveries and Best Western Discoveries; it was great to see he liked George O'Brien in ARIZONA LEGION (1939)...Kristina listed her favorite first-time watches at Speakeasy...Jessica also has a list at Comet Over Hollywood...What a delight to see the undersung Western ROUGHSHOD (1949) as one of the Top 5 new discoveries at Phyllis Loves Classic Movies...and there are lots of good titles on Rachel's list at Hamlette's Soliloquy. I'm going to have to finally check out KNIVES OUT (2019)!

...I liked this short but thoughtful article from The Guardian on how grief is handled in Marvel films and TV series, particularly in WANDAVISION (2021).  

...At The Hollywood Revue Angela has posted a detailed, interesting article, "Box Office Poison: Kay Francis."

...Please look for a separate Notable Passings post later this weekend.

...For additional recent links of interest to classic film fans, please check out my December 18th roundup.

4 Comments:

Blogger Jerry Entract said...

Those biographies of Ruth Roman and others by Derek Skulthorpe look very interesting and tempting. Also a BluRay from WA of "THE THREE MUSKETEERS" (1948) should be good to see.

11:24 AM  
Blogger Elisabeth Grace Foley said...

Aha, I always like reading best-of-the-year lists—thanks for sharing a few here! I did a top-five list myself this year: https://www.elisabethgracefoley.com/2022/01/top-5-movies-and-tv-watched-in-2021.html

4:07 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

I agree, Jerry! I have the O'Brien and Trevor books, and while I've not read them cover to cover, I've enjoyed dipping into sections various films.

Elisabeth, thank you so much for sharing your favorite discoveries list! THE GOOD FAIRY (1935) is a delight, isn't it? David Suchet's Poirot has been highly recommended to me by readers, so I'm glad to read your thoughts on him as well.

Best wishes,
Laura

3:07 PM  
Blogger Hamlette (Rachel) said...

Thanks for the shout-out! I liked Knives Out so much, I went right out and bought the DVD so I can rewatch it whenever I want.

Thanks for the link to Leonard Maltin's thoughts on the new West Side Story. I've been so on the fence about whether or not to see it. And... actually, I'm still on the fence after reading his thoughts, but it's nice to know his take.

5:01 AM  

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