Monday, October 26, 2015

Maureen O'Hara, R.I.P.

Maureen O’Hara, one of the great film stars from the Golden Age of Hollywood, passed away last Saturday at the age of 95. She was an excellent actress and grand lady, for sure. I first saw her way back in 1939 as Esmeralda in The Hunchback of Notre Dame, which was a black and white film – and I was bowled over by her beauty – even without the later technicolor that made her famous. Because of her gorgeous red hair, she was called The Queen of Technicolor.

My top three favorite O’Hara films are The Quiet Man, The Black Swan, and Dance, Girl, Dance. And my favorite O’Hara performance is her fiery turn in The Quiet Man. She really held her own with John Wayne in that one! It’s interesting that O’Hara co-starred opposite a host of A-list actors, including John Wayne, Tyrone Power, Henry Fonda and Jimmy Stewart. But I think she and John Wayne worked the best together. They co-starred in such films as Rio Grande, The Wings of Eagles, McClintock, and The Quiet Man.  I love what O’Hara said about their chemistry together in The Quiet Man. “I was tough, I was tall, I was strong and didn’t let anyone get away with any nonsense. He was tough, he was tall, he was strong and didn’t let anyone get away with any nonsense -- so we were a perfect pair.”

Maureen O’Hara was brought to Hollywood from Ireland by Charles Laughton during the late 1930s and achieved immediate acclaim for her stunning performances in The Hunchback of Notre Dame and Jamaica Inn. She remained a popular box-office draw throughout her long acting career, which lasted for seven decades! I think she must have been wonderful to work with -- and that means a lot in Hollywood.

It’s no surprise that Maureen displayed an impressive talent for acting as a child and was accepted into Ireland’s Abbey Theater at the age of 14. Ironically, her operatic training there seemed wasted in Hollywood. Although she was the number one choice for the lead in The King and I musical, the director didn’t want someone who made “all those pirate movies” playing Anna – so the role went to Deborah Kerr, whose vocals had to be dubbed. Go figure!  But I was surprised to learn that her work in so many Western movies earned her a Golden Boot Award in 1991.

As one of O’Hara’s many fans, I was very happy when she received an Honorary Oscar in 2014 for “her inspiring performances that glowed with passion, warmth and strength.”

If I had to pick three words to describe Maureen O’Hara, they would be:

May she rest in peace. My deepest condolences to her family, fans and friends.

(Listen to a St. Patrick’s Day “Maureen O’Hara Tribute” on Movie Addict Headquarters by clicking on the link below.)

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Monday, October 12, 2015

Ovation Film Poem

Behind the scenes Ovation shines.
We see no play or actor’s lines.
The drama is played out backstage:
romance and deals and even rage.

It’s Maggie Chase acting again.
But wiser now than she was in
two former films about her goal
to be a star in every role.

Instead of film, she’s in a play --
and winning praise, but should she stay?
An offer for a TV show
has come her way, so should she go?

She’s fallen for a TV guy
who hopes she’ll give TV a try.
But cast and crew depend on her.
They may be hurt by this new lure.

Tanna Frederick is great again.
Many more fans she’ll surely win.
Henry Jaglom directs with care
and adds a twist that few would dare.

James Denton plays the TV guy
who looks so fine and makes me sigh.
A mystery also appears.
Where is the man who disappears?

Still, Shakespeare said back in the day,
or should have said, “The thing’s the play!”

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Saturday, October 03, 2015

The Martian Film Deserves a Poem

All alone and stranded is he.
Left behind with his misery,
an astronaut who’s presumed dead.
To survive he must use his head.

No one knows he is still alive
on Mars and struggling to survive.
He finds a way to contact Earth,
the far-off planet of his birth.

But how can he be rescued here?
Will his old crew be coming near?
And can he last until the day
they pass by Mars while on their way?

Suspense and space fill up the screen.
The Martian is a “must-be seen.”
It truly is adventure bold –
a tale of guts that’s so well told.

Matt Damon is a worthy lead.
He makes us feel his every need.
All other actors nail their parts.
We see their fears and know their hearts.

Plus, planet Mars looks very real.
And getting home? That’s the BIG deal!

(Directed by Ridley Scott from Drew Goddard’s screenplay adaptation of Andy Weir’s book. Cinematography by Dariusz Wolski; musical score by Harry Gregson-Williams; production design by Arthur Max; special and visual effects by numerous talented artists and technicians; released by 20th Century Fox; and rated “PG-13” for some strong language, injury images, and brief nudity. Supporting cast includes Jessica Chastain, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Jeff Daniels, Kristen Wiig, Michael Peῆa, Sean Bean, Kate Mara, Sebastian Stan, Aksel Hennie, Donald Glover, Nick Mohammed, Chen Shu, Eddy Ko and Mackenzie Davis. Wow!)

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Thursday, October 01, 2015

Horror Month on Movie Addict Headquarters

Boo!!! We love to celebrate Horror Month on Movie Addict Headquarters. Below is information about the wonderful guests who have agreed to join us this October. 

October 6. Laurie Jacobson, a celebrated Hollywood author and film historian, plans to discuss Hollywood Haunted, her entertaining and enlightening book that covers more than 100 years of ghostly goings-on in Hollywood. This should be a great show to help us get in the mood for Halloween!

October 13. Filmmaker David Spaltro will make a return visit – this time to talk about his new horror movie, In the Darka very scary flick highlighting demonic possession.   

October 20. We plan to revisit the great Barry Bostwick and his interview about The Rocky Horror Picture Show, which is now celebrating its 40th Anniversary

If you dare, listen at 4 p.m. Eastern Time (1 p.m. Eastern Time, 3 p.m. Central Time, 2 p.m. Mountain Time) each Tuesday or to the archived segments available on BlogTalkRadio after every live episode. 

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