I Saw That!

One woman's opinions about popular entertainment.

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Location: Chicago, Illinois, United States

Amateur boxing coach, Christian (but not so heavenly-minded that I'm no earthly good) singer, writer, self-defense advocate, childfree. feminist www.smartwomenboxingtraining.org

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Kiss Me Stupid (1964)

This movie is one of the many sex comedies that were popular in the 1950's and 1960's.  Orville (Ray Walston) is a piano teacher in a small town who loves his wife Zelda (Felicia Farr).  However, Orville is very jealous and in the habit of accusing everyone from the milkman to one of his piano students of giving his wife the eye.  Orville doesn't much trust Zelda to be faithful, either.

A popular singer named Dino (Dean Martin) stops in the town on his way to Los Vegas to get gas.  Barney (Cliff Osmond), who runs the gas station, sees this as a perfect opportunity to sell Dino some of the songs he and Orville have written together.  Barney and Orville cook up a scheme to keep Dino in town for the night.  But Orville regrets allowing Dino to stay in his house when he sees how much the singer is impressed by a photo of Zelda.  Urged on by Barney, Orville picks a fight with Zelda to get her out of the house before Dino sees her.  Polly the Pistol (Kim Novak), the prettiest cocktail waitress in town, is pushed into service to masquerade as Zelda.  The plan is to offer Polly's charms up to Dino so he'll buy Orville and Barney's songs.  But as usual in these types of films, things get way out of hand very quickly.

Dean Martin basically played an exaggerated version of himself in this film.  Martin's public persona was that of a good time guy who liked women and booze, and that worked well in this movie.  It's funny to see Ray Walston, known for playing mostly controlled wily characters with common sense, play a guy who is out-of-control.  I found this film to be quite bawdy for the time that it was made.  I have no doubt that if this movie was remade today, the situations presented would have gone a lot further.

Mel Blanc (the voice of Bugs Bunny) and Henry Gibson (of TV's "Laugh-In") have small roles in this movie.

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Sunday, May 24, 2015

Sabrina (1954)

Sabrina (Audrey Hepburn) is a chauffeur's daughter who has grown up around near her widowed father's wealthy employer.  Her father has long been concerned about her infatuation with David (William Holden), the youngest son of the wealthy family.  Sabrina's father decides to send his daughter off to Paris, France to a fancy cooking school.  Sabrina doesn't want to go, and she even thinks about suicide when she spots David, a notorious playboy, sneaking away for a private moment with another woman.  But she ends up going away.

When she returns two years later, presenting a grown-up, sophisticated image, suddenly David is smitten with her.  David's parents are concerned with image in their social set.  After all, David is engaged to a woman whose dad plans to sign off on a merger with the family business.  David's older brother Linus (Humphrey Bogart) steps in.  Linus runs the family business, and he formulates a plan for himself to wine and dine Sabrina, then eventually send her back off to Paris and away from David.  But unlike his brother, Linus begins to consider Sabrina's heart -- and more complications arise.

This movie is miles ahead of the 1995 remake that starred Harrison Ford and Greg Kinear.  Ms. Hepburn is very stylish, and the movie has a very romantic sweetness to it.  Ellen Corby plays Bogart's secretary; she went on to star in the 1970's series, "The Waltons".  Nancy Kulp, who was Miss Hathaway on "The Beverly Hillbillies" and Hoppy the cop's mom on "Sanford and Son", also has a small part as a maid.

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