Monday, October 23, 2017

Hedy Over Heels

I'm finally seeing the documentary Bombshell about the actress and inventor Hedy Lamarr tonight (I missed it at Tribeca earlier this year even though I very much wanted to make it) and it made me realize that I have never seen a Hedy Lamarr movie. Have you? What would be the one to first watch? Give me a clue in the comments, please and thank you! And here's the Bombshell trailer:



Josito Montez said...

As a glamour creature, don't miss "Ziegfeld Girl", such a dazzling melomusical. Her most surprising performance is to be found in King Vidor's "H.M. Pulham, Esq.".
And at her most popular - and ridiculous - moment, giving Victor Mature a hard time in "Samson and Delilah".
She usually looked super dumb and inexpressive in the movies, no one couldn't guess she was so smart in real life.

joel65913 said...

I'm anxious to see the doc as well, a fascinating woman.

Never seen a single film of hers? Yikes, well you're in for some good stuff...and some really goofy things as well.

After some effort and digging I've seen all but one of her movies, the foreign lensed Loves of Three Queens, and while she wasn't a skilled technician on the level of Barbara Stanwyck or Bette Davis she had an intriguing stillness to her persona that kept your eye on her as well as that astonishing beauty.

The best place to start is probably Ziegfeld Girl because it has Lana Turner in the role that really moved her into the front ranks and Judy Garland full of youthful effervescence singing two great but totally different tunes, the elaborate and wild Minnie from Trinidad and an achingly beautiful version of I'm Always Chasing Rainbows. Plus Jimmy Stewart, Edward Everett Horton and some awesome costumes.

Next would be the very charming romantic comedy Come Live with Me with Jimmy Stewart again.

H.M. Pulham, Esq. contains what is considered her best performance though I lean towards The Strange Woman (an odd film full of ambiguity that works as long as you ignore the fact that Hedy speaking with her Viennese accent throughout is supposed to be a Maine native born and bred)

Also worth checking out:

The Conspirators
Algiers-Not much of a film really but iconic because of she and Charles Boyer and the "Come wiz me to the Casbah" line.
Her Highness and the Bellboy-Fluff but cute with an endearing Robert Walker.
Let's Live a Little
A Lady Without Passport
Boom Town-Her role is small very much in support of Clark Gable, Spencer Tracy and Claudette Colbert.

Then she made some hilarious studio mandated piffle:

Samson and Delilah
White Cargo
Lady of the Tropics
The Heavenly Body

There's a film she made with Spencer Tracy-I Take This Woman-that is a confused mess and was a notoriously troubled production dubbed "I Retake This Woman" during the making of it and a costly flop on release.

And finally if you can find it ya gotta see her last film "The Female Animal" with Jane Powell playing her boozy daughter! It is a hooty MELODRAMA that is obviously a Joan Crawford castoff and a sinfully delicious treat!!!