Category Archives: My Thoughts

OK, I have had enough, but please stop spamming this site with inane comments. Considering your website is called Free Psychic Reading Online you should be aware that I am not going to publish any of your stupid comments. So please stop!!!


Coming Up

I know that I have been really slack with this blog but hopefully things will start to pick up. After weeks of not watching any movies at all I have decided to start watching some again. I know that I have made these promises before but here are just some of the films that I plan to watch this year.

I wonder how many of these that I will actually watch.

Hopefully I can also clean up the previous posts that I have made, which I have already started to do.


Tim Burton

Last week I went to the Tim Burton exhibition at ACMI here in Melbourne. I haven’t yet written about this experience as since then I have caught quite a bad case of football fever and have had a hard time concentrating on anything other than Saturday’s big game between Collingwood and St Kilda.

I found the exhibition to be quite interesting as it focussed mainly on Burton’s early work when he was at Disney and the stuff that inspired him.

There was lots of stuff from Nightmare Before Christmas and his stop motion animated movies, but very little from Batman or Batman Returns or any of his popular movies.

I like Tim Burton and there are some movies of his that I enjoy but I also think that he is massively overrated. I think that a lot of times when he is doing adaptations of other people’s work he takes creative freedoms a bit too far. An example of this I think is on the design of the Penguin character from Batman Returns. Nowhere in the Penguin’s 40 years (until then) of comic book history did he ever have flippers or live in the sewers.  Despite Burton being a self-confessed comic book geek he must have known that he would piss off the Batman fanboys by doing this.

Then there are his versoins of Charlie & the Chocoltae Factory and Alice In Wonderland. My problem with these films is that they take too many liberties with technology and CGI and look too freakishly unrealistic to work. Seeing Helena Bonham Carter‘s massive head bobble around just freaks me out and screams of uncanny valley.


At The Circus

Directed by Edward Buzzell
Produced by Mervyn LeRoy
Written by Irving Brecher
Starring Groucho Marx
Chico Marx
Harpo Marx
Music by Harold Arlen
Cinematography Leonard M. Smith
Editing by William H. Terhune
Distributed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Release date October 20, 1939 (1939-10-20)
Running time 87 minutes
Country United States
Language English

This 1939 Marx Bros. film starts off very slowly with one of those intolerable songs performed by someone not named Groucho. In this case it is Kenny Baker and Florence Rice who perform the mind-numbingly opening number. I wonder whether 1930s and 40s audiences really enjoyed these occasions when the Marx’s were not on the screen as I don’t. The same applies to Chico’s piano performances and Harpo’s harp recitals, which in At The Circus is tacked onto the politically incorrect Swingali number. It’s a wonder that the songs aren’t very good as they are written by Harold Arlen who composed the more memorable music to another movie in 1939, The Wizard Of Oz. These are all fast-forwardable moments and it is not until the 12 minute mark of the film that Groucho finally arrives, but when he does it is worth it.

The first scene in which Groucho appears, where he tries to get onto the train but Chico won’t let him because “He don’t gotta the badge” is really funny, but the films most memorable moment comes when Groucho finally gets onto the train to sing the fantastic ‘Lydia The Tattooed Lady”, the only good song in the entire film. [rant] Back in 1939 this would have been hilarious as at that time the only women to have tattoos were in the circus, but I guess that it has lost much of its relevance today since most women under 40 these days have some ink on their body. It used to be a sign of rebellion for a person to get a tattoo but now it is a sign of conformity with what ones peers are doing and it is almost more rebellious for someone not to have a tattoo. I never really got the point of why people chose to get tattoos. I know that they will claim that it is art but from an aesthetic point of view it is pretty gross. I think that the human body is enough of a work of art without a person covering it in graffiti. Michelangelo never put ink over David. Botticelli did not give his Venus any tattoos. I really don’t get it. [/end rant]

Lyrics to “Lydia, the Tattooed Lady”

Music by Harold Arlen and Lyrics by E.Y. Harburg

Oh Lydia, oh Lydia, say, have you met Lydia?
Lydia The Tattooed Lady.
She has eyes that folks adore so,
and a torso even more so.
Lydia, oh Lydia, that encyclo-pidia.
Oh Lydia The Queen of Tattoo.
On her back is The Battle of Waterloo.
Beside it, The Wreck of the Hesperus too.
And proudly above waves the red, white, and blue.
You can learn a lot from Lydia!
La-la-la…la-la-la.
La-la-la…la-la-la.
When her robe is unfurled she will show you the world,
if you step up and tell her where.
For a dime you can see Kankakee or Paree,
or Washington crossing The Delaware.
La-la-la…la-la-la.
La-la-la…la-la-la.
Oh Lydia, oh Lydia, say, have you met Lydia?
Lydia The Tattooed Lady.
When her muscles start relaxin’,
up the hill comes Andrew Jackson.
Lydia, oh Lydia, that encyclo-pidia.
Oh Lydia The Queen of them all.
For two bits she will do a mazurka in jazz,
with a view of Niagara that nobody has.
And on a clear day you can see Alcatraz.
You can learn a lot from Lydia!
La-la-la…la-la-la.
La-la-la…la-la-la.
Come along and see Buffalo Bill with his lasso.
Just a little classic by Mendel Picasso.
Here is Captain Spaulding exploring the Amazon.
Here’s Godiva, but with her pajamas on.
La-la-la…la-la-la.
La-la-la…la-la-la.
Here is Grover Whelan unveilin’ The Trilon.
Over on the west coast we have Treasure Isle-on.
Here’s Nijinsky a-doin’ the rhumba.
Here’s her social security numba.
La-la-la…la-la-la.
La-la-la…la-la-la.
Lydia, oh Lydia, that encyclo-pidia.
Oh Lydia The Champ of them all.
She once swept an Admiral clear off his feet.
The ships on her hips made his heart skip a beat.
And now the old boy’s in command of the fleet,
for he went and married Lydia!
I said Lydia…
(He said Lydia…)
They said Lydia…
We said Lydia, la, la!

Lydia became one of Groucho’s signature songs.

Overall the film isn’t one of the Marx Bros. best but it is still quite fun and worth a look. Any film featuring Groucho Marx’s wit and Harpo Marx’s slapstick and even Chico Marx’s racial stereotype is always good watching. I used to be fascinated by the film when I was a kid, I actually set the video recorder to tape it late one night when it was on but unfortunately I missed the last five minutes of the film. Even back in the 80s you couldn’t rely on the TV stations to stick to their schedules. Grrr!!!


Movies I Want To See

I am a sucker for horrible films, especially those from the 1950s. Here are a few that I want to see.

Teenage Frankenstein

This is from AIP and features Phyllis Coates, who played Lois Lane in the first season of the Adventures Of Superman.

MothraMothra is another of the Japanese giant monsters who on various occassions fought against and then teamed up with Godzilla.

Reform School Girl

Another AIP film.

The Hotrod Gang Meets The Ghost Of Dragstrip Hollow

The ultimate 1950s drive-in film featuring teenagers, hot-rods and ghosts. From AIP.


Hollywood Beauty Through The Years

I just thought that I would make a post of how the idea of beauty in Hollywood had changed over time and by extension how societies idea of beauty had changed. Perhaps I am only doing this because I want to look at pictures of pretty girls (who doesn’t) or because I don’t understand how people can think that Angelina Jolie is the most beautiful woman in the world when she clearly isn’t. I guess that I wanted to see how she stacks up against the beauties of the past.

1920s

Louise Brooks

Louise Brooks was not very big in Hollywood and ended up in a few German films such as Pandora’s Box where she played Lulu. She is considered a style icon now, thanks to her hairstyle, but back then she wasn’t well-known and only became discovered after her career had finished.

Louise Brooks

Clara Bow

Clara Bow was the “It” girl and was the representative of the flapper age. Her career ended when the talkies arrived. Rumour has it she was quite friendly with the 1927 University of Southern California football team.

Clara Bow

Anna Mae Wong

Was the first Asian star of the cinema but was often consigned to playing the stereotypical ‘dragon lady’. Started in Hollywood when she was very young and earned the nickname ‘CCC’ or curious Chinese child. Featured in th first colour film in 1922 but was considered too Asian to even play an Asian, as producers preferred to cast white actresses in ‘yellow-face’ over Anna Mae. Has been rediscovered in recent years and is considered a gay-icon.

Anna Mae Wong

1930s

Greta Garbo

Greta Garbo’s career began in the silent age but her popularity grew in the 30s. She was one of the first Swedish actresses to hit Hollywood and was at times considered to be sexually ambiguous. Was the most famous star of the late 1920s and the 1930s.

Greta Garbo

Mae West

Mae West doesn’t really look all that sexy. She was almost 40 when she arrived in Hollywood. She was also short with big boobs, but she had a sexy attitude. She was the most controversial star of her day due to her outward sexuality. Famous for her double entendres.

Mae West

Marlene Dietrich

German actress who the American Film Institute named Dietrich the ninth greatest female star of all time. She was parodied so well by Madeline Kahn in Blazing Saddles.

Marlene Dietrich

Jean Harlow

The platinum blonde. Died at the age of 26 of kidney failure.

Jean Harlow

Josephine Baker

Was more famous in France than America but did make one ‘color’ film in the states. When Baker returned to America in the 60s she was a war hero and an icon. Famous for the banana dance and dancing nude, she was portrayed by Lynn Whitfield in the 1991 movie The Josephine Baker story.

Josephine Baker

Fay Wray

The scream queen from King Kong and lots of other 1930s thrillers.

Fay Wray

1940s

Ingrid Bergman

Another Swedish actress whois ranked as the fourth greatest female star of American cinema of all time by the American Film Institute. Appears in classics such as Casablanca, Notorious and Gaslight but ended up causing a scandal when she by having an affair with Roberto Rosselini, which stalled her career for many years.

Ingrid Bergman

Jane Russell

Her first movie was The Outlaw which was made by Howard Hughes. The release of that film was delayed while censors decided how best to minimize Ms. Russell’s ample cleavage.

Jane Russell

Ava Gardner

Another Hollywood starlet who had affairs with many of her leading men. Was married to Mickey Rooney and had a tumultuous affair with Frank Sinatra.

Ava Gardner

Lana Turner

Lana Turner

1950s

Brigitte Bardot

The Parisian bombshell and still regarded as a sex symbol today.

Brigitte Bardot

Sophia Loren

An Italian sex symbol who is still sexy now in her 70s.

Sophia Loren

Audrey Hepburn

An icon of class and sophistication.

Audrey Hepburn

Grace Kelly

One of the most beautiful actresses in Hollywood. Attracted the eye of Prince Rainier of Monaco whom she married. Died in an auto accident in 1982.

Grace Kelly

Marilyn Monroe

Another icon whose life was tragically short. Still the best known sex symbol.

Marilyn Monroe

Gina Lollobrigida

Another Italian actress with big boobs.

Gina Lollobrigida

Jayne Mansfield

One of many Marilyn clones. Life cut short in a car accident but her daughter is Mariska Hargitay of Law And Order: SVU.

Jayne Mansfield

1960s

Jane Fonda

Jane Fonda

Raquel Welch

Raquel Welch

Catherine Deneuve

Catherine Deneuve

Elizabeth Taylor

Elizabeth Taylor

Natalie Wood

Natalie Wood

1970s

Farrah Fawcett

Farrah Fawcett

Pam Grier

Pam Grier

1980s

Brooke Shields

Brooke Shields

Michelle Pfeiffer

Michelle Pfeiffer

Jamie Lee Curtis

Jamie Lee Curtis

1990s

Sharon Stone

Sharon Stone

Julia Roberts

Julia Roberts

Demi Moore

Demi Moore

Uma Thurman

Uma Thurman

2000s

Angelina Jolie

Angelina Jolie

Salma Hayek

Salma Hayek

Halle Berry

Halle Berry

Scarlett Johansson

Scarlett Johansson

Keira Knightley

Keira Knightley

Kate Winslet

Kate Winslet

Lucy Liu

Lucy Liu

I also know that this post can be seen as somewhat sexist so I will be looking at the idea of masculinity in Hollywood throughout the years too, in a future post.


Back again

I thought that I had given up on this blog as I had a week off watching movies. I think that so far this year I have wached 123 movies, which is quite a lot.