Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Dial M for Murder

Dial M for Murder
Release Date: May 29, 1954
Directed by: Alfred Hitchcock
Actors Include: Ray Milland, Grace Kelly, Robert Cummings, John Williams, and Anthony Dawson

I have always enjoyed watching Alfred Hitchcock movies, mostly because they always have a great plot, always suspenseful, not exactly scary, and always just plain old fun. His movies have always gotten me through sick times, winter, summer, spring, fall, Christmas break from school, days off of work, watching his movies before going to bed and also watching a lot of his movies with my Grandpa and my mom. A lot of people know who Alfred Hitchcock is because of Psycho, being his most famous movie and also The Birds. But my favorites are his most not so famous ones. Which include the first Alfred Hitchcock movie I wrote about which is Shadow of a Doubt, and then this one is definitely one of my favorites.

This movie has one heck of a cast. The beautiful Grace Kelly and also Ray Milland are the main stars in this movie, and also includes a man that appears in the most of AH movies and also television series, John Williams. The movie is set, as well as Rope which I also Blogged about earlier, in a apartment in England. Again, you never feel trapped. And you never find yourself sitting during the movie saying "man, we have never left the apartment". Which is a true Alfred Hitchcock experience.

The movie is about a man who is married and a very well known Tennis Star. He finds out that his wife is doing something she shouldn't and he wants nothing but to teach her a lesson, which she will never get to learn. He decides it is best to murder his wife, and he also decides that it should be by someone that he knows has already done a crime in the past, and is also someone he feels he can trust. The movie has a lot of twists and turns and ends on a happy note. It very much keeps you on the edge of your seat.

You can also find the director in this film as well. He is located in a picture the Ray Milland shows us during his discussion on the plot to murder his wife. And one thing you can think about during the movie, is how well the story is written. The fact that most directors take forever in showing you a certain detail of one's character, and it only takes two minutes to figure out what is happening with this story.

Another thing I have always loved about Alfred Hitchcock is the fact that he always has great one liners in his movies. One in Dial M for Murder that always left me with chills is this part where Ray Milland is talking about how he wants his accomplice to leave the scene of the crime:
"...and that is what I shall tell the police"
"yes, but she may say"
"but she isn't going to say anything, will she?"

The one character I have always loved to watch is the detective, which is played by John Williams. He is funny and witty. And also a lot of fun to watch. I hope you watch this movie and enjoy it as much I have. I have probably seen this movie a million times.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011


Released Date: August 25, 1960
Directed by: Alfred Hitchcock
Actors: Anthony Perkins, Vera Miles, John Gavin, Janet Leigh, Martin Balsam, and Patricia Hitchcock

This movie is probably one of the scariest movies ever. And by far THE scariest villain to date, Norman Bates. Or Ms. Bates?? Who knows right??

The movie starts off with a woman who is clearly in love but cannot do a thing about it. The man she is in love with is going through a divorce that is costing him a lot of money, and he lives in another town. He is also paying for his late father's bills and can't afford to pay for a little thing called marriage with this woman. I don't want to give anything away, but let's just say she figures out a way to get a hold of a bunch of money that can easily pay the late father's bills, his alimony, and also a marriage. However, her way about having the money is completely wrong and well let's just say karma stinks. She ends up at Bates Motel and the rest, they say is history.

Now Alfred Hitchcock never ended up winning any Oscars, but this movie did end up giving Mr. Hitchcock 4 Oscar nods and this movie is rated 8.7/10 according to IMBD. I would give the movie a 10/10 but of course everyone has different taste. :)

Alfred Hitchcock had a chance to make this movie in color but decided that the movie would benefit in black and white. And he was right. The movie is much more creepier and not to mention that most if not all black and white scary movies are much more creepy than color scary movies. I don't know if it is because of the dark shadows or if it is because Alfred Hitchcock is just that brilliant, but this movie is GRAND. The movie also has the directors daughter in it. Patricia Hitchcock, she was in a few of his movies actually. You can see the proud daughter talk about his movies on all of his movie DVDs.

This movie also has a lot of very great creepy lines such as, "A boys best friend is his mother" said by Norman Bates.

I hope you all watch the movie. It is a very son/mother type of film that will keep your heart racing and will keep you out of hotels and showers for a very long time. Literally, the main actress from this film, Janet Leigh, could not shower after making this film. And she also admitted to having to have her maid stand in the bathroom with her as she showered sometime in 2000 after having broke her leg and the Dr telling her to take showers instead of baths.

It's the great pumpkin Charlie Brown!!!

I love the holidays. Plain and simple. Holidays are fun. Decorations, cookies, sweaters (I like to call my holiday sweaters Bests, for instance Christmas sweater is my Christmas Best :)), family, friends and TV movies. We all wait for the clay-mation Rudolph the Red nose reindeer to come on. And naturally Charlie Brown comes to mind. All of our favorite gang to give us the inside scoop of what the holidays are all about.

My favorite character is Linus. Watch as he waits for the Great Pumpkin in a field of pumpkins while all of his friends and sister are trick or treating. He is literally out there all night till his sister comes out and brings him inside. And hopefully she shares all of her candy with him since he missed out on all the fun of getting the candy. My other favorite Peanut gang member is in the movie too but you never see her, and that would be Peppermint Patty. :)

We all remember the "I'll go ahead and throw that away" candy. The candy we usually threw away though was actually candy. Such as the candy without a rapper, the gum, the no brand named stuff too. Well watch as poor ol' Charlie Brown gets nothing but "bad" candy.

I hope you all get to catch this movie every year like I do. Usually on channel five?? Yup, that's where I see it. Along with all the Christmas movies too.

Saturday, October 29, 2011


Released Date: October 13, 1950
Director: Henry Koster
Actors include: James Stewart, Josephine Hull, Peggy Dow, Charles Drake, Cecil Kellaway, Victoria Horne, Jesse White, and William H. Lynn

This is one of my favorite movies of all time. Jimmy Stewart is the main character in this movie and he is very funny in this and happens to be my favorite actor.

Elwood P. Dowd (James Stewart) lives with his sister Veta Louise Simmons (Josephine Hull) and his niece Myrtle Mae Simmons (Victoria Horne). He goes to a bar that he frequents and finds out there that his sister is throwing a party that day. Elwood believes, along with his best friend, Harvey (himself) that his sister just plumb forgets to invite him. So what does he do? He walks into the party, uninvited. The one issue he has that bothers her the most is that he sees things. Well not things more like one thing. And not just one thing but one GREAT BIG thing. He sees a rabbit. A huge Rabbit. Harvey, his best friend!! And because Elwood is the only one that sees him, then Elwood must be crazy. Myrtle ends up taking her brother to a mental institution. And after a series of mishaps, funny ones at that, the end of the story will touch your heart.

This is a very funny and sweet movie. I hope you guys watch it and enjoy it.

The Bad Seed

The Bad Seed
Released Date: September 12, 1956
Director: Mervyn LeRoy
Actors: Nancy Kelly, Patty McCormack, Henry Jones, Eileen Heckart, Evelyn Varden, William Hopper, Paul Fix, Jesse White, Gage Clarke, Joan Croydon, and Frank Cady

Girls will be girls, right?? That's the saying!! This movie is mixed with horror and Bad Girls Gone Wild. Only the bad girl gone wild is an actual girl, like an eight year old girl. She is absolutely crazy and completely sweet all at the same time. This is by far, one of the scariest movies I have ever seen.

This movie has a huge cast, and with a whole bunch of people you may or may not know. The movie was based on a stage play and the movie was made with pretty much the whole stage play cast.

The whole movie is based around this woman, Christine Penmark (Nancy Kelly), who seems to have the perfect life. She has a military husband named Col. Kenneth Penmark (William Hopper), a beautifully sweet and perfect little daughter named Rhoda (Patty McCormack), friends named Monica Breedlove (Evelyn Varden) and her brother Emory Wages (Jesse White). Christine's husband ends up leaving to go away to Washington D.C and leaves his wife, Christine alone with Rhoda. Which is usually okay, except that strange things keep happening. One day, Rhoda goes to a picnic with her classmates. She ends up losing a prize and gets awfully mad. The strange thing, her classmate that won, ends up dead!! He apparently drowned at the picnic. But how and why? The whole class was told not to go near the edge of the lake, and he did. That is Rhoda's story at least, and she's sticking to it. What really did happen to her classmate? Later on in the movie, the apartment houses cleaning man, Leroy Jessup (Henry Jones), who is odd, yes, but also seems to know too much about Rhoda, ends up dead as well. What is happening? And could all of these deaths be accidents? Watch to find out!!!

You will be surprised and definitely scared!!! I know I was.

Monday, October 24, 2011


Released Date: August 28, 1948
Directed by: Alfred Hitchcock
Actors include: James Stewart, John Dall, Farley Granger, Sir Cedric Hardwicke, Constance Collier, and Joan Chandler

A lot of people would feel claustrophobic inside an apartment all day, but somehow Alfred Hitchcock made a few movies in a small space setting and you never felt claustrophobic. This movie is one of them. The entire movie is set inside this tiny apartment and you are truly only in one part of the place the entire time. The living room.

This movie was shot in Technicolor and made on a platform that made directing difficult. Alfred Hitchcock had a vision and he knew when he wanted to use color and when it was best not to. Did you know Psycho was able to be shot in color but Alfred Hitchcock said that it would be scarier in black and white? Which by the way is very true.

The movie is based on this story about the story of these two men, Leopold and Loeb. They did not end up with the death penalty but that would have been a legal action that most people would have assumed the two men would end up with. The two young men think they are superior, and do away with who they would call inferiors. Alfred Hitchcock ends up showing the ending in the beginning of the movie because he cannot wait till the end. He was a very anxious man.

My favorite actor by far is in this movie. Jimmy Stewart! He always played a good guy but in this movie, although he is still "the good guy" he ends up being a influence on a crime. Alfred Hitchcock loved working with Jimmy Stewart because he was so easy to get along with. The two became lifelong friends.

Alfred Hitchcock ends up being in this movie twice. You can see his logo (just his profile) lit up outside the window of the apartment the two men live at. But also, because Alfred Hitchcock said that the logo would be way to obvious, he decided to do a walk in on the sidewalk in the very beginning of the movie.

This movie is one of my favorites. Mostly because it's by Alfred Hitchcock but also because Jimmy Stewart is in it. The acting is great in this movie. I hope you will watch this and enjoy it too.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Arsenic and Old Lace

Arsenic and Old Lace
Released Date: September 23, 1944
Director: Frank Capra
Actors include: Cary Grant, Priscilla Lane, Raymond Massey, Jack Carson, Peter Lorre, Josephine Hull, and Jean Adair

When you are a young child, you usually have fears about your parents or any of your family. I use to think that when I went to bed at night, my family would grow antlers and run around outside becoming one with the animals. I use to wonder if they would ever tell me about their weird ways. But can you imagine having two sweet, old aunts that murder people and that is their biggest secret?

Cary Grant is the main character in this movie and is very funny in it. His quick whit and humor make the movie that much more special. Everything about this movie is hilarious and if I ever found out a secret like that from my own family, I fear it would not be as funny. The little old ladies are very sweet and mean well. But their ways of being sweet and helping out their community is, well dwindling the population by a dozen.

Cary Grant did not like this movie, he thought that the acting was over the top. And maybe it is, to our standards but it very funny none the less. The movie has a great cast. And with Halloween coming up, I hope that this is one film you will find a way to watch. The movie is set on Halloween too.

The little old ladies, and as funny as this movie is, live next to a grave site. One of the tombs that Cary Grant stands near has the name Archie Leach, which is Cary Grant's real name. He has two brothers in the movie, one is a scary fellow who Cary Grant tries to act tough towards and ends up saying a very funny line: "when I come back, I want you gone" and as he runs out the door he says "wait for me." Another funny line, that I think you would enjoy is, one from another brother. He has clearly lost his mind at one point in his life. He goes by the name Teddy Roosevelt and he honestly thinks he is. But the Reverend from the movie sneezes and Teddy says "my I must be catching cold" his sweet aunt replies "no dear, it was Reverend Harper that sneezed."

I hope you all enjoy this movie as much as I do. :) Please watch and let me know what you think.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

All About Eve

All about Eve
Released Date: January 15, 1951
Directed by: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Actors: Bette Davis, Anne Baxter, George Sanders, Celeste Holm, Gary Merrill, Hugh Marlowe, Thelma Ritter and Marilyn Monroe

My grandma's favorite actress, she always said, was Bette Davis. And so I decided that the next movie I would write about is the one movie that by far has the greatest acting I have ever seen--All About Eve. It was made perfectly.

I think all the actors in this are absolutely perfect and Bette Davis still stole the show. Bette Davis had such confidence, she makes the rest of the women in the world look like insecure freaks. But the fact is, she was confident because she probably knew how truly wonderful she was at acting. She didn't just read the script but she became the script. Her most memorable line in this movie, and one of the best lines ever, was "fasten your seatbelts, it's going to be a bumpy night."  The movie is worth watching just to hear her deliver it!

Another person I enjoy in this movie is Thelma Ritter. She was funny and very on key. Her and Bette Davis became great friends. Thelma Ritter was a big star back in the day. Although she was not the main character in anything she played, she acted in a lot of movies.

This was Marilyn Monroe's first big movie and because of her insecurities, legend has it that Bette Davis made her cry on the set one day. Bette Davis and Gary Merrill had enjoyed their roles so much and thought so much of the couple they played that they both decided that they would make a great couple in real life. It ended in divorce as Gary ended up being abusive and Bette Davis knew better than to stay.

The movie is about a woman who becomes completely infatuated with an actress. She wants to become her, she wants to be the same actress, have the same clothes, same friends, same boyfriend, same everything. She ends up meeting her favorite actress and completely takes over as her maid. Bette Davis plays Margo Channing, who is the star and is also the stalked. The stalker is Anne Baxter. Anne Baxter played the part so well that I truly thought she was evil. I used to call her Anne Back Stabber. I also refused to watch The Ten Commandments because she was in it and I did not like her.

Parts of it may ring painfully true to every actor today because so many in show business have a stalker. If I could, Jake Gyllenhaal would be stalked by muah. I'm just kitten, I know Jake Gyllenhaal is reading this and probably follows me. Right????

Well I hope you end up watching this movie and I hope you like it. It is not only a classic, but one for the ages.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Shadow of a Doubt

Shadow of a Doubt
Released Date: January 15, 1943
Directed by Alfred Hitchock
Actors include Teresa Wright, Joseph Cotten, Macdonald Carey, Henry Travers, Patricia Collinge, and Hume Cronyn

Shadow of a Doubt, Alfred Hitchcock said, was his favorite movie that he made. I had always said that this was my favorite as well. The movie is not scary but more suspenseful and there is also a lot of humor in it too. This movie is not as popular as other movies Hitch has made, but it should definitely be. His daughter, Patricia Hitchcock said that the reason it was his favorite, was because it always excited him to bring menace into a small town.

Teresa Wright one time said that she went to go visit Hitchcock at his office in California because he wanted her in his new movie. So she went to visit him and he told her a story, this story. When the movie finally came out in theaters which was August 16, 1943, she said she had seen this movie before. Not just because she was in the movie but because Hitchcock was a great story teller and told her the entire movie from beginning to end in his office.

The movie is about a man who is running away from something wrong, and ends up in his sister's house, in a small town where everyone knows each other. This town is Santa Rosa, California. Everyone seems to have smile on their face, and they also seem to be living in a bubble. And have no idea that outside of the bubble is a crazy, insane world that is scary and lonely. Till he comes in and shows his sweet niece that the world is not what she thinks it is. It's, to him, a fowl sty. His name is Uncle Charlie, and the young girl, the niece, was named after him. Her name is Charlotte but everyone calls her Charlie too. She has an ordinary life, with ordinary, sweet filled dreams. And her uncle will bring her nightmares. After a whole list of crazy events, the uncle will soon realize that he can't hurt this family, although his, he can't change the fact that they are happy and will continue to be. He never meant to upset his sister, or even his niece, but the fact of the matter is, he did upset his niece.

One of my favorite lines from any movie is in this. There is a scene where the mother of the movie is on the phone, and the mother is also screaming at the top of her lungs because she obviously has no idea that even with a whisper you can be heard on the telephone. Well then Teresa Wright's little sister in the movie said this: "mama, you don't have to shout. Really papa, you'd think mama had never seen a phone. She makes no allowance for science. She thinks she has to cover the distance by sheer lung power." :)

Really Mama :)

Needless to say, it's a scary world. It has a lot of great actors in the movie. I don't want to ruin the end, so I won't. But the movie is funny and suspenseful, and everyone is a star in the movie. Even Alfred Hitchcock, which can be seen in the beginning of the movie playing cards on the train. :) He has the winning hand and looks "well you don't look good either" on his face because of it.

I hope you see this movie now, and enjoy it too.

About Me!!

Ever since I was a little girl I loved, enjoyed old movies. So then I decided to write a blog about the movies/actors/TV shows I enjoy. All old and pretty much all black and white, and some in color. But nothing after the 80s. The one 80s movie I'll mention is by Alfred Hitchcock but otherwise yes, all of the movies are old. :)

Everyone always wants to know a little bit about the Author, and even though I don't feel like one yet, I figured I'd give you a little bit about me. I currently live with my aunt and mom. Before that I lived with friends, which in total, I lived with for about a year. Before that I lived with my mom and two wonderful people, my grandparents. With whom raised me and took care of me for almost 21 years. Our dog too, we had a husky before and now we have a mutant, a cute thing Sir Rudy G, who happens to be a pug. He was my grandma's dog. My grandma passed away in April. Everyday, something happens or something I see that reminds me of her. She was a great woman, a wonderful woman. And one that I hope to become. The one thing that does help is that I know she will always watch over me. I feel like she is with me everywhere, all the time. And that is a comfort.

I had a happy childhood. I played sports, basketball ended up being my favorite thing to play. I loved watching basketball games and football games with the grandparents. Grandpa was always a huge sports fan. Which is one of many things I am glad he taught me about. We would play baseball outside, basketball and even throw the football around. Redskins are my football team. And my grandma was from North Carolina and so we watched and cheered for the Tar heels.

When you are younger everything seems so easy. When I was in elementary school and even middle the day was always this: School, home, home work, outside/play time till dark, dinner, bath, TV time (usually Wheel of Fortune, then Seinfeld and lastly was Friends). Then it was game time, usually cards with my grandma or Nintendo, old style Mario and even game boy which we all remember catching em all Pokemon. Which all we had was the blue, yellow and red version. Now kids have every color in the world AND have 9 million to catch. Us 80s and 90s born had easy. Then there was also the fun computer games. The Oregon Trail and also Wheel of Fortune, where in the world is Carmen San Diego. And so forth. Let me just say I had a great childhood, great family, great dogs, great friends. I will end this by saying I am a HUGE animal lover, I work as a Pet Nurse at an animal hospital, mostly dogs and cats. And I am also a tree hugger. One thing I completely would love to have happen, that in some way, I do something with old movies. By giving it justice, more fan base, or even facts for people that enjoy these movies. I one day hope to either have a magazine about old movies and old actors and directors. Or something that I would want way down the line, open a movie theater that shows nothing but old movies. But anyways, hope you enjoy my blog. :)