Spent yesterday walking down B'way checking out the new Tom Otterness sculpture exhibition on the mall. It was also really interesting seeing Harlem give way to Columbia back to the more run down 90's until the full-blown Upper West Sidedness of the 70's. Apparently there's a ping-pong club around 100th st. Who knew? Also: the Ollie's in the 80's looks a lot like "Ollie'e". Thumbs down to bad signage.
Mildred Pierce (1945), Michael Curtiz:
Strange how Michael Curtiz isn't a familiar name. I mean Casablanca alone should do it for him, and then there's Robin Hood and this.
It seems odd of all forties genres to mix melodrama and noir, but it works really well. All the standard melodrama setpieces seem pretty similar to the noir ones, it's always about wanting and the friction that comes from it.
The Navigator (1924), Buster Keaton, Donald Crisp
The Love Nest (1923), Buster Keaton, Edward F. Cline
The Boat (1921), Buster Keaton:
The Navigator isn't Keaton at his best. It does seem like a minor work; there's just not the same imagination en masse as in some of the others. It does, however, have some of the funniest bits I've ever seen on screen.
The Love Nest also had some really funny gags and good rhythm.
The Boat I wasn't that sold on. Some stock gags, some nice touches, but nothing that special. Then again, Buster Keaton in the rotating room is alwasy funny.