Elizabeth’s Two Sisters Tag

Hello dear friends! It’s seems ages since I wrote a blog post! But, never fear – I haven’t dropped off the face of the earth. ;) And I haven’t lost interest in blogging, either. (I have so many ideas for posts I think I’m stuck with blogging for a good 6 more years!) I’ve simply entered back into service for my coveted degree, often times feeling like my head will explode with ideas, deadlines and lists of supplies I must buy or bring to class. (Don’t tell my profs, but I shouldn’t even be writing this now – I’ve got several projects I should be working on! Shhhh!)

Anyhow, my lovely friend Kate has kindly tagged me to participate in Elizabeth’s Two Sisters Tag. Here goes:

  1. Do you like Greta Garbo? In general, like will I watch anything she’s in just because she’s in it? No, probably not. Even though actresses with accents are a huge favorite of mine, something about GG rubs me the wrong way. Must say though, before I get too much fruit thrown at me, I totally love Ninotchka. She’s brilliant in the comedic scenes- especially the one where Melvyn Douglas pops the cork on the champagne bottle and she falls to the ground blindfolded as if she’s been shot. I burst out laughing every single time I watch that.
  2. In Buster Keaton’s MGM films, do his gestures and his plots resemble those of Harry Langdon? Elizabeth will be very disappointed in me when I say I have never seen a Harry Langdon film. But! Don’t feel too bad yet, Elizabeth because I did my homework and looked up Harry on Youtube. I see what you mean about his style and how it is choppy and staccato. I also watched a clip from The Cameraman (made by Buster Keaton at MGM) and I do see a resemblance in the physical styles. I think it’s highly believable Buster was channeling (subsciously or otherwise) Harry for his MGM films. We’re all inspired by everything around us all the time, so why couldn’t Buster be inspired too?
  3. Who is your favorite director of silent dramas? Fritz Lang – just for Metropolis.
  4. Do Harold Lloyd’s movies (movies, not shorts) drag along? Absolutely, positively not! Harold is my favorite of all the slient era comedians. He’s so sweet and kind. And I never felt his chase scenes dragged on. My favorite HL film is The Cat’s Paw. The last scene where he tricks all the bad guys with the magic secrets is totally priceless. I’m always spellbound during that scene. I love seeing the bad guys get their due!
  5. Who made better silent shorts, Mack Sennett or Hal Roach? Hal Roach, no doubts at all.
  6. Is Al St. John a genuine heavy, or a baby heavy? (This is based on the idea of the “Baby Vamp”, which was the character of the girl who was vampish, but not a vamp.) Although I have never seen Al St. John in a film, I say genuine heavy. Elizabeth says “heavy” means the villain, and in this case, I think it fits. Al St. John was rather handsome (in some of his early photos I found, he was quite good looking). A good villain should always have some appeal of some sort – he’s all the more dangerous for it! (by the way is St. John pronounced as it looks or in the English fashion: “sinjin”?)
  7. Do you like 1920s musicals? In theory, yes. Sadly, I’ve seen very few. Just don’t have Joan Crawford dancing and we’ll be fine. ;)
  8. Do you like Al Jolson’s movies? No, no, no – a thousand times NO! Al Jolson is one of those people I simply cannot stand. In particular, his voice and conceited attitude grate on me to no end. I’ve seen The Jazz Singer and have a very hard time seeing why everyone holds him as a fine example of a classic film star. It looks like I agree with Elizabeth’s sister and Kate’s mom on this one.
  9. Who is your favorite animal star? This is an incredibly tough one! And not because there are so many animals I love, but because I’m trying not to copy everyone else! First, I’ll just say I’m not a big fan of either Lassie or Toto. I hate crying over Lassie and worrying she’s going to die every 5 seconds and Toto was just not cute enough to be given such a major role. Asta from the Thin Man films would have been my first choice for this honor, but since I’m trying to be original here I’m going with choice #2: Bonzo from Bedtime for Bonzo with Ronald Reagan. I’ve talked about this film before, trumpeting the fact that it is an amazingly good film despite all the ridiculous bad press it has received. Besides dear Ronnie, Bonzo is one of the major reasons why it works. He’s adorable! I had no idea I could love a chimpanzee so much. Monkeys are usually not my cup of tea.

So! Many thanks to Kate for tagging me and Elizabeth for creating such a twister of a tag. :) You made me work hard for these answers, and now I’m just a little bit smarter about silent films, so thank you very much for that, too!

If you have a couple minutes you really should click through the links above and read the other responses to the tag. They’re marvelous! Happy day, my dears and I hope to have a new post for you soon!

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11 Comments

Filed under Film Bloggers, Pick-me-ups, School, Tags & Awards

11 responses to “Elizabeth’s Two Sisters Tag

  1. I’m glad I got you interested in Harry Langdon! He’s absolutely one of my favorites!

    And I find Al St. John to be handsome too. My mother insists that he isn’t attractive, but I find him to be very devastating! ;)

  2. Joseph Ciolino

    re: Al Jolson

    Your reaction to Jolson’s film work is not unreasonable. Many, including Jolson himself, felt the same way, even back then! Jolson is NOT held as a “classic film” star. He was never really much of a film star. He was, however, according to his peers and to 50 years of critical acclaim, an astnishing musical stage personality and entertainer. Of that there is no doubt.

    No one received the kind and quality of reviews that Jolson did on Broadway. No one illicited the reaction, the curtain calls, and the near riotous shouting for “More!” that Jolson did. There are accounts of his being held on stage for 45 minutes of curtain calls, the audiences simply would not let the show go on.

    This extraordinary “persona” did not work on film, though we can see shadowy glimpes of it in the film, “Big Boy,” which was a film version of one of his greatest Broadway triumphs of the same name.

    Such super-mega stars as Crosby, Sinatra, Presley (Yes, Elvis), Jerry Lee Lewis, Mick Jagger, Rod Stewart, all spoke of Jolson as an inspiration and the greatest of all singers. Chaplin himself called Jolson brilliant.

    As for his voice, it was said he used it as a great pitcher uses a baseball, or a great cook uses garlic. Not a good analogy there, but he could make you cry with it one minute, laugh, the next. It had remarkable power, and changed from song to song as befitting the particular work.

    During his lifetime he was held as the world’s greatest entertainer, the parnassus of showmanship, and deserves better than you did him.

  3. Fun post, Casey….loved seeing your film faves and dislikes here. I’m not a Garbo or Jolson fan either! :o) Happy Day ((HUGS))

  4. Joseph Ciolino

    If you base your opinion of Jolson on his movie performances then you are like the man in Plato’s cave, seeing only the shadow of the outside world and not the world itself.

    All I am saying is, give Jolson a chance.

  5. I can’t even believe there was a question about Lloyd’s feature films dragging along! To me they are entertaining from beginning to end!

  6. Bet you’ll think twice before dissing Jolson again, eh? I’m glad I said I liked him in my responses. Wow! Scary guy!
    I enjoyed your answers – and I like Bonzo, too.

  7. Elizabeth– I’m glad you agree about Mr. St. John! That’s the first thing I thought when I looked at his photos! Thanks so much for making the tag, it was lots of fun to do! :D

    Joseph– I am quite sorry if I came off as an ostrich about my Al Jolson comments. These are merely my humble opinions here. I understand about the Jolson appeal, especially in a historical context, but I just don’t like him. That’s all I’m saying. I encourage you to utilize your remarkable knowledge and tremendous passion for Jolson to create your own blog. There are many blogs that are devoted to a specific star – yours could be totally Jolson. Give it a whirl! :) And thanks for commenting!

    Tracy– Thanks so much! Your comments always make me smile! A great big hug to you, too! :D

    Mercurie– I agree! I adore Harold Lloyd and his films! Elizabeth’s sister just has no proper appreciation for him! ;)

    Matthew– I certainly shall! ;) I had no idea I was in for such a firestorm. Thank you for backing up my own thoughts on that. Anyhow – Glad to see I’m not alone in my Bonzo love. Yay for Bonzo! I think I should get a t-shirt that says that… ;) Hey- maybe you can answer the St. John question: how would you pronounce it?

  8. I suspect he would have said ‘saint john’ – ‘singeon’ is a kind of optional eccentricity..!

  9. Haha! Makes sense. :D Optional Eccentricity is such a marvelous phrase. “I’ll take a triple helping of the optional eccentricity, please!” ;)

  10. Hey, Casey! Where are you? The world demands more Noir Girl!!!

  11. Hey, Matthew! Haha! Well, I am here, furiously working on projects. I’ll do a post especially for you and the world giving a glimpse into what I’ve been working on. I promise, I will try harder. I’ve been writing a little series I hope to have up soon. Thank you so much for missing me! :D

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