Thursday, October 30, 2014

"Queen of the Nile" - The Twilight Zone - 1964




“Queen of the Nile” is one of those “Ann Blyth Like You’ve Never Seen Her Before” roles, and though she really did play many of those kinds of parts with remarkable variety in her film career, this Twilight Zone season five episode stands out probably for two reasons.  First, because unlike so many of her other sultry or dastardly roles, apart from Mildred Pierce, this one has been repeated on television often over the years, and is available on DVD, so it is remembered well and familiar to many.  (Some of you have reminded me of this episode through the course of this series, so it certainly is well known.)  It hasn’t been in hibernation like Another Part of the Forest or Swell Guy. 

Second, because by the time this episode was broadcast on March 6, 1964, Ann was the mother of five children, whose last film had been made seven years previously, and by virtue of her absence from the screen, her settled family life, and her, well, virtue as it was dismissed in the press, had created an aura of squeaky-clean dullness about her reputation.  The sultry-but-sinister siren she plays here had to have been a kick for her, and quite a surprise by those who wrote her off as a goody-goody if they were not aware of her previous strong roles.

“Queen of the Nile” is our Halloween celebration, or Samhain, for you Celtic types.

Here Ann plays a Big Movie Star who welcomes a reporter into her home (furnished in a flamboyant combination of 1960s California modern and ancient Egyptian) for an interview.  She is sexy, flirtatious, and very grand in her manner and speech, the way the old stars learned to do when they had pulled themselves up by their bootstraps to cover more humble beginnings.  This woman has obviously crafted herself into the Big Movie Star, but from what beginnings?  Though her mansion is light-filled and chic, and she is gracious and smiling, there is an unsettling air of Sunset Blvd. about the encounter between the actress and the reporter.

“Does 38 seem terribly old to you?”

Well, no, it does not, but I guess it depends which side of 38 you’re on.

Beneath her studied air of coyness, there is something of a tigress in her manner.  We don’t know if she’s going to seduce him or chew his face off, which intrigues the reporter, as does her stunning beauty.  He is dumbstruck by it, and starts to do the math.  If she was a movie star of 20 years ago, why does she not look matronly now?  Ann explains she was only a teenager when she started in films.  Okay.  Perhaps that makes sense.  (Especially when one considers that the actress playing this bombshell really was a teen star in the 1940s and really does look stunning in real life…and is 35.)

But according to his notes, she really debuted in the 1930s.  Hmm.  That would make her even older.  She dismisses this with a throaty laugh, chiding him for believing the habitual mistakes that turn up on old newspaper clippings.  He is utterly charmed by her, and though completely under her spell, it seems, when she kisses him, he nevertheless regains some of his objectivity when he leaves.  He goes back to doing the math.  And looking through the morgue.

Uh, that’s newspaper morgue.  Archives of old newspapers.  His editor buddy, played by one of my favorites, Frank Ferguson, digs through his file cabinets while Lee Philips regains his senses in a phone booth.

Ah, phone booths.  Curse you, cell phones, for stripping us of this last private refuge in a noisy urban world.

And Mr. Ferguson, completely without the aid of the IMDb website, like pulling a rabbit out of a hat, discovers a possible link to the lady being in films as early as the 1920s.  Hmm.  That would make her even older.

Mr. Ferguson played bit parts in two of Ann’s movies, Free for All (1949), which we covered here, and Swell Guy (1949).  One of his best roles was as the doctor in the noir Caught (1949), discussed here.

Both he and Lee Philips did a lot of episodic TV over many decades.  Rounding out the cast is Celia Lovsky, who plays Ann Blyth’s mother.  A veteran of the stage in Vienna and Berlin, she had a few small roles in films, but like the gentlemen, did a lot of TV guest roles.

Madame Lovsky is a mysterious figure in this episode, only one of a number of offbeat circumstances that makes our Mr. Philips curious, once he has left the spell of the place and Ann Blyth’s knockout beauty and overpowering party girl personality.  Madame Lovsky eventually spills the beans about Ann’s beauty secrets, though Philips, still the ever-curious reporter, must learn for himself.  The ending is pretty creepy.  

A few favorite scenes: when Lee Philips waits alone in Ann’s living room and studies the enormous, and quite stunning, painting of her purportedly done in the 1940s.  I’d love to know if that painting exists somewhere.  Then he turns to see a row of portrait photos of Ann on the piano, which actually were her official head shots used for press photos, some of which would later adorn some of her theatre playbills.

The scene of Ann swimming in her movie star’s pool, and emerging like Venus from the sea, tended to by her maid (who must have her own inside scoop on her employer, but the writers, the director, and Ann all dismiss her).  Just as Ann seems goddess-like, she comes down to earth by having a fight with her mother.  Nothing like a family squabble to make things seem instantly normal.  Or, is that really her mother?

This episode is available on DVD here, and is also currently running on the Hulu website here where you can watch it online.


Did I mention the ending is really creepy?

Happy Halloween.

Come back next Thursday when we discuss Ann Blyth’s “third act” career as a singer who performed on television, town auditoriums, Las Vegas nightclubs, and New York’s famous Rainbow Room.


PASS THE WORD!!!!!   Looking for photos and shared memories of the recent TCM Cruise regarding Ann Blyth's talks.  This material will be used for my upcoming book on Ann Blyth's career. Please contact me at: JacquelineTLynch@gmail.com.





****************************
 THANK YOU....to the following folks whose aid in gathering material for this series has been invaluable:  EBH; Kevin Deany of Kevin's Movie Corner; Gerry Szymski of Westmont Movie Classics, Westmont, Illinois; and Ivan G. Shreve, Jr. of Thrilling Days of Yesteryear.  And thanks to all those who signed on as backers to my recent Kickstarter campaign.  The effort failed to raise the funding needed, but I'll always remember your kind support.
***************************
TRIVIA QUESTION:  I've recently been contacted by someone who wants to know if the piano player in Dillinger (1945-see post here) is the boogie-woogie artist Albert Ammons. Please leave comment or drop me a line if you know.
****************************
 HELP!!!!!!!!!!
Now that I've got your attention: I'm still on the lookout for a movie called Katie Did It (1951) for this year-long series on the career of Ann Blyth.  It seems to be a rare one.  Please contact me on this blog or at my email: JacquelineTLynch@gmail.com if you know where I can lay my hands on this film.  Am willing to buy or trade, or wash windows in exchange.  Maybe not the windows part.  But you know what I mean.

Also, if anybody has any of Ann's TV appearances, there's a few I'm missing from The Dennis Day Show (TV), the DuPont Show with June Allyson, This is Your Life, Lux Video Theatre.  Also any video clips of her Oscar appearances.  Release the hounds.  And let me know, please. 

***************************
A new collection of essays, some old, some new, from this blog titled Movies in Our Time: Hollywood Mimics and Mirrors the 20th Century is now out in eBook, and in paperback here.

I’ll provide a free copy, either paperback or eBook or both if you wish, to bloggers in exchange for an honest review.  Just email me at JacquelineTLynch@gmail.com with your preference of format, your email address, and an address to mail the paperback (if that’s your preference).  Thanks.


Thursday, October 23, 2014

"Murder On Ice" - Quincy, M.E. - 1983



“Murder on Ice” brings a veteran cast together in a snowbound lodge in this episode number 19, season eight of Quincy, M.E., fun for the familiar faces and the tightly written whodunit.  Star Jack Klugman as the intrepid medical examiner is on his honeymoon with his bride, played by Anita Gillette.  There’s nothing like a romantic getaway full of unexpected guests and a few murders to put the damper on romance.


Broadcast March 9, 1983, here Ann Blyth, 54 years old when she played the role of a court psychiatrist, is married to a judge.  They own the mountain lodge where the episode takes place.  The judge invited Quincy to use the vacation home for his honeymoon.  When Jack Klugman and bride arrive—via a horse-drawn sleigh driven by longtime stage and TV inebriate Foster Brooks, they do not expect Ann to be there, and she, trudging through the snow with her skis over her shoulder, did not expect them.  She shakes her head in knowing chagrin, as her husband the judge, a hail-fellow-well-met sort of guy, is always pulling surprises like this, inviting guests without telling her.  But it’s a big place and there’s plenty of room in this rustic hideaway with its wood paneled walls, rough beams, log railings, fireplaces everywhere and a wood box for kindling every three feet.  Very cozy in a do-it-yourself sort of way.

The three of them are, in turn, surprised by arrival of Lola Albright and Robert Alda, also invited by the judge.  I like Miss Albright’s line about Jack Klugman’s entrance on a sleigh, “I might have known it was you arriving like Dr. Zhivago.” 

Mr. Alda, 69 years old here, thought he was going to get to do some hunting, and Miss Albright, a lovely 57 years old here, thought the judge had set her up for a job interview.  Pretty soon, Dane Clark, 70 years old here, shows up, another surprised guest, thinking he was invited for a seminar.  I mention their ages because it’s so refreshing to see an older cast not playing “old,” but playing people dealing with careers, marriages, fun, sorrow, envy, lust, greed—which most TV and movie roles seem to feel are situations best left to younger people, as if people over 40 years old are utterly without dimension.

Lola Albright still twinkles with those big blue eyes and sly smile, a lot of Edie the sultry jazz singer from Peter Gunn ever charmingly present.  Ann’s reddish-brown fashionably curly perm complements the confident, professional woman she plays.  It’s amazing how drastic the change in hair and makeup from only the four years’ difference between this Quincy episode and the one we discussed last week here, shot in 1979, in which she appeared fey and matronly.  Everything’s fashion-forward in the new decade.  All the women and men are dressed in stylish sport clothes to cue us that the casual drapery of the 1970s has been booted out for an entirely new and vibrant makeover.  These folks are not playing retired has-beens; they’re the movers and shakers of their professions.

So far the story begins a little like the Agatha Christie ploy in And Then There Were None, where a group of strangers arrive at a remote location, all invited by the missing host.  The difference here is the characters are not strangers.  They have all met before as professional colleagues in the court system.  

And their host is not missing.  He’s dead.

The episode was filmed at Lake Tahoe, so we get some snowy scenery, and with the roads blocked (aided by a snow cannon that causes an avalanche) they are sufficiently isolated—and sufficiently trapped, leaving them at the mercy of a killer.  The judge, found buried in the avalanche, is soon suspected by Jack Klugman, who just can’t stop being a medical examiner even on his honeymoon, of being murdered by something else.  As his distressed bride exclaims when he wants to examine the corpse, “What is this, a busman’s holiday?”

Still puzzling over why the judge should have invited them all here for different purposes, it’s Lola Albright who figures out that they all have a particular connection with each other:  They are all united by their involvement with a specific criminal case.  In a high-stakes white-collar crime caper, they all helped in one way or another to put an embezzler in jail.  Lola Albright was the prosecuting attorney.  Robert Alda and Dane Clark were the investigating detectives.  Jack Klugman testified in court as a forensics expert, and the deceased judge tried the case and sentenced the bad guy to prison.

And the bad guy escaped from prison a year ago and has been on the run since.

Which explains the shadowy figure in a dark ski suit we see sneaking around.  He’s back for revenge.

But wait, there’s more going on here.  Ann Blyth and Lola Albright are decidedly cool with each other.  Ann’s late husband, the judge, was a notorious philanderer and had an affair with Lola.  Ann, not as much the grieving widow as the bone tired widow: “He certainly gave me enough reasons over the years to stop loving him.  I doubt that he ever loved me.”  She is stony and resigned.

Mr. Alda carries his hunting rifle to bed, and sits awake, flinching at every noise in the night.  There is some professional jealousy afoot.  He complains that his colleague Dane Clark is a hotshot who grandstanded for credit in the old case.  We will eventually learn that neither detective, nor even the judge, was squeaky clean when it came to the embezzlement investigation.  They each succumbed to bribes and a cover-up.  

We have our middle of the night everybody-running-around-in-their-jammies-and-bathrobes scene when the power goes out, and at one point Quincy’s bride boots him out of the bridal chamber so Ann Blyth can bunk with her instead, since it’s not safe in this lodge when another dead body is found.  There will be more gruesome discoveries before the episode ends, and they realize that, though the escaped convict, played by Raymond Mayo, finally makes his chilling appearance, he is not the only killer loose.  One of them is also a killer.

Is it Ann, the not-so-grieving widow?  Or Lola Albright, who was thrown over, many times, by the judge for other mistresses?  The rivalry of Dane Clark and Robert Alda, each with something to hide?  Or did the mute caretaker, played with gentle shyness by Henry Gibson have something to do with it?  He rides off in an exciting snowmobile chase with the escaped convict.

And then the judge’s overnight bag turns up with an interesting document inside for which one or more of them are willing to kill.

Just as we discussed in last week’s episode, I don’t normally give the ending away in a mystery, but I’m going to here again.  Muhwa-ha-ha-ha-ha. After the break of the next several lines, I’m going to talk about the ending.  If you don’t like spoilers, run away now.  Put your snowshoes on.  Hurry up.  C'mon, c'mon, c'mon.

...................................................................................................................
....................................................................................................................






Still here?  

Okay.  It’s Ann.

Which, once again, is probably why she took this gig.  “I get to kill again?  Sign me up!”

It’s those quiet ones you’ve got to watch out for.

She makes a formidable opponent for Jack Klugman because she is intelligent and fixed things up pretty cleverly, except for the misplaced grocery receipt, which was stupidly careless, either of her or the writers.  But Jack gathers the remaining suspects together and calmly unravels the plot.  Ann’s whimpering cry, burying her face in her hands is the picture of despair of a woman whose one attempt to get the better of her unfaithful husband, not just to murder him, but to top him for spite over stolen diamonds, has come crashing down around her.

Quincy, M.E. season eight is not out on DVD yet, but probably will be eventually.  Right now you can watch it on Netflix.  Sorry about no screen caps this time around.

Come back next Thursday when we celebrate Halloween with an eerie episode of The Twilight Zone from 1964, where Ann pulls out all the stops playing a flashy, mysterious woman who does not seem to age, no matter the fashions or the decade.



***************************
Times-News, (Henderson, N.C.) , February 28, 1983,  p. 12.
***************************
Bon Voyage to Ann Blyth and all the happy wanders currently on board in this year's TCM Classic Cruise.

Ann will be doing a couple hour-long conversation sessions, and will also be on hand for a screening of Mildred Pierce.

Have a look here for the rest of the schedule and events with the other celebrity guests.

I, sadly, am unable to attend this cruise, but if any reader is going,  I invite you (beg you) to share your experiences and/or photos relating to Miss Blyth on this blog as part of our year-long series on her career.  I'd really appreciate your perspective on the event, to be our eyes and ears.  Thanks.
****************************
 THANK YOU....to the following folks whose aid in gathering material for this series has been invaluable:  EBH; Kevin Deany of Kevin's Movie Corner; Gerry Szymski of Westmont Movie Classics, Westmont, Illinois; and Ivan G. Shreve, Jr. of Thrilling Days of Yesteryear.  And thanks to all those who signed on as backers to my recent Kickstarter campaign.  The effort failed to raise the funding needed, but I'll always remember your kind support.
***************************
TRIVIA QUESTION:  I've recently been contacted by someone who wants to know if the piano player in Dillinger (1945-see post here) is the boogie-woogie artist Albert Ammons. Please leave comment or drop me a line if you know.
****************************
 HELP!!!!!!!!!!
Now that I've got your attention: I'm still on the lookout for a movie called Katie Did It (1951) for this year-long series on the career of Ann Blyth.  It seems to be a rare one.  Please contact me on this blog or at my email: JacquelineTLynch@gmail.com if you know where I can lay my hands on this film.  Am willing to buy or trade, or wash windows in exchange.  Maybe not the windows part.  But you know what I mean.

Also, if anybody has any of Ann's TV appearances, there's a few I'm missing from Switch, the Dennis Day Show (TV), the DuPont Show with June Allyson, This is Your Life, Lux Video Theatre.  Also any video clips of her Oscar appearances.  Release the hounds.  And let me know, please. 

***************************
A new collection of essays, some old, some new, from this blog titled Movies in Our Time: Hollywood Mimics and Mirrors the 20th Century is now out in eBook, and in paperback here.

I’ll provide a free copy, either paperback or eBook or both if you wish, to bloggers in exchange for an honest review.  Just email me at JacquelineTLynch@gmail.com with your preference of format, your email address, and an address to mail the paperback (if that’s your preference).  Thanks.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

"The Death Challenge" - Quincy, M.E. - 1979


“The Death Challenge” brings together Ann Blyth and Don Ameche as a show-biz couple on whom the glare of the spotlight is focused after a long period of being ignored—but they also attract the attention of the police and our intrepid medical examiner, Quincy, played by Jack Klugman, when a stunt goes terribly wrong.

It’s the first of two episodes of the TV program Quincy, M.E. on which Ann Blyth appeared.  We’ll discuss the second one next week.  One of the sublime joys of episodic television in the 1970s and 1980s, for lovers of classic films at least, is that a huge roster of players from Hollywood’s heyday took their final curtain calls as guests on these shows.  

 “The Death Challenge,” from season 4 of the series, was broadcast March 24, 1979.  In the seventies, Ann played only one other role on television, a guest appearance on another detective show, Switch, starring Robert Wagner and Eddie Albert as an ex-conman and an ex-cop, respectively, joining forces.  Sharon Gless, who later starred in her own cop series Cagney and Lacey, played their girl Friday.  The episode was called “Mistresses, Murderers, and Millions,” broadcast December 23, 1975.  I haven’t seen this episode yet, but I hope to in the months ahead, and if so, I’ll include a more detailed discussion of Ann’s role on this show in the book next year.

Both Switch and Quincy, M.E. were Universal television productions, filmed on the Universal lot.  It gave Ann a chance to return to her old studio.  A 1976 interview shares her perspective on returning after first entering those gates in 1943:

“It was a beautiful place then, full of lawns, trees, and cottages.  I thought of it as sort of a college campus.  Now it’s huge, busy, and full of modern buildings.  They bulldozed the old schoolhouse eight or nine years ago.”
Ann isn’t sentimental about the studio.  She’s a clear-eyed pragmatist.

Ann had spent the better part of the 1970s on stage in musical theatre, as we discussed in this previous post, but when a reporter asked her if she would like to do another musical film, she responded, “I would rather have a good dramatic role instead.”  At the time of this 1976 interview, she had hoped to star in a “Movie of the Week” for TV, “although admitting it has been difficult to come up with a good story.”

The “Movie of the Week” never happened, but the decade ended with a gig on Quincy, M.E., where she was reunited with star Jack Klugman, who had earlier guest appeared with her on the TV show Name of the Game in 1969,which we discussed in this previous post.


Ann Blyth, throughout her film career, was starred with some of the greats of Hollywood’s leading men, including Charles Boyer, Frederic March, Paul Newman, Gregory Peck, Robert Mitchum, Bing Crosby, Robert Taylor, William Powell…and we can see by the list that most of the leading men were much older than she.  “The Death Challenge” gives her one more opportunity to star with a handsome, and older, leading man, Don Ameche.

Mr. Ameche is in fine form here, trim and fit at 70 years old to Ann’s 50 years old in this pairing.  They are a longtime couple devoted to each other.  He is a former magician, and one of the delights of this show brings us to some real-life Los Angeles locations—here the Magic Castle on Franklin Street, a private club and fraternal organization for magicians.  The other is the TAV Celebrity Theater on Vine Street, where the Merv Griffin Show used to be filmed.

Ameche, no longer a headliner, is reduced to being a kind of maître d' in the restaurant of The Magic Castle.  He is as dapper as ever in his evening clothes.  Ann works at the front desk, and together they manage as best they can, with their glory days behind them.

As the episode begins, Ameche appears on television introducing a new young magician—his protégé—performing the dangerous stunt known as The Death Challenge.  The protégé is tied up, locked in a chest, and submerged in a tank of water.  He is supposed to escape before he dies.

He doesn’t.  He dies.

Jack Klugman soon has a new corpse in his autopsy room and he suspects, guess what, that the drowning wasn’t accidental.  The protégé was murdered.

Our suspects include Bobbi Jordan, who is good in this episode as the not-so-bereaved widow.  She was abused by her no-good budding magician husband, and she has a new relationship with the stage manager, played by Martin Kove, who leaves his shirt unbuttoned down to his navel, just so we don’t forget it’s the 1970s and he’s macho.  The not-so-bereaved widow had assisted her husband with the stunt on stage, and later actually attempts to step into his shoes and perform the stunt herself—hoping to take some of the glory and all of the money.

Martin Kove could have bumped him off, hating him and wanting his wife.  Then, too, we have the down-and-out, but dignified couple Don Ameche and Ann Blyth.  Don, a former student of the great Houdini, taught the protégé everything he knew, but then was cut out of the act and humiliated.  Ameche, furious, threatened him.  I love Don Ameche in this role.  Listen to that wonderful speaking voice, so measured and well modulated.  I wish newscasters would speak that way instead talking too fast, too loud, and too much as they do.  They might be worth listening to if they spoke well.

Ann stays in the wings during the act, adoring her husband, concerned and yet, enigmatic.  There is an archness, a fey expression of wonder on her face, a mask of heavy makeup and insecurity behind the pose of serenity.  We are compelled to look for cracks in the brittle brave façade.

Or Rufus, the surly growling co-worker at The Magic Castle?  Or Ron Masak as the smarmy TV host who’ll do anything for ratings, whose insurance rates must be sky high with so many accidents on his show.  Dependable Mr. Masak is like the Lou Gehrig of TV, he’s been on everything.


 The horrified studio audience reaction three times during three different performances of this dangerous stunt makes me wonder if they just had the same people move to different seats, or if they bothered with costume changes?

Toward the end of the episode, our Don Ameche steps into the tank himself to prove he can still do it.  A nice scene where, in his dressing room before the act, Mr. Ameche sits before the well-lighted mirror while Ann lovingly touches up his stage makeup.  She proudly fastens his magician’s cape on him.  She is dressed in the gown she wore when they were presented to the queen on a long-ago English tour.  They have kept their figures even if their faces are lined.  They are young again even while entering their golden years, the magic of love creating a double image for us as they share the promising kiss of devotion of a bride and groom before he heads for the stage.

Jack Klugman figures out who the murderer is, of course, being very clever about math and chemicals and stuff.  I normally don’t give away the endings on mysteries, but I’m going to this time.  After the break of lines below, I’m going to talk about the ending, so if you are allergic to spoilers, run away now.
Ready?  Here we go…






************************************************************************************
***********************************************************************************
***********************************************************************************
***********************************************************************************


Okay.  If you’re still here, the guilty person is….

Ann.

I’m not going to explain the whys and wherefores, I’ll leave that to you to watch the episode, but there’s a final scene, where, confronted by Quincy and the detectives who come to arrest her husband for the crime, she breaks down and admits she did it.  She couldn’t stand seeing her adored Don Ameche treated so shabbily and just wanted to see him be the star one last time.  Tears flood her eyes in an instant, she sobs uncontrollably, and we are reminded, who may not have seen her in recent years on stage and remember only her film roles of long ago, how deep she dives in character to bring up emotions on that still lovely face, and uses her whole lithe body to purge them.

For somebody who was tagged with a good girl image that, in some respects I think hamstringed her career (despite, as we’ve discussed before, her several “bad girl” roles), one must smile at the thought that Ann, presented with this script must have relished being the murderer.  ("Hurray!  I get to bump somebody off!  Where do I sign?”)

Ameche is natural and understated, quietly commands every scene he’s in, and it’s no wonder his film career revived for a brief, if glowing, few years in the 1980s.  The younger cast members seem ersatz, unfinished and underdeveloped compared to these two finely polished actors.


Come back next Thursday when we discuss Ann Blyth’s second appearance on Quincy, M.E., from 1983, where several friends and colleagues—all played by stars from Hollywood’s heyday—are trapped in a snowbound cabin.  Also present are Quincy and his new bride.  And a murderer.

*************************
Milwaukee Journal, January 27, 2976, syndicated article by Vernon Scott, p. G1.

Springfield (Mass.) Daily News, September 1, 1976, article by Sam Hoffman, p. 25.
***************************

As  most of you probably know by now, this year's TCM Classic Cruise will set sail (proverbially) in October, and one of the celebrity guests is Ann Blyth.

Ann will be doing a couple hour-long conversation sessions, and will also be on hand for a screening of Mildred Pierce.

Have a look here for the rest of the schedule and events with the other celebrity guests. Unfortunately, the cruise is booked, so if' you're late, you can try for the waiting list.

I, sadly, am unable to attend this cruise, but if any reader is going,  I invite you (beg you) to share your experiences and/or photos relating to Miss Blyth on this blog as part of our year-long series on her career.  I'd really appreciate your perspective on the event, to be our eyes and ears.  Thanks.
****************************
 THANK YOU....to the following folks whose aid in gathering material for this series has been invaluable:  EBH; Kevin Deany of Kevin's Movie Corner; Gerry Szymski of Westmont Movie Classics, Westmont, Illinois; and Ivan G. Shreve, Jr. of Thrilling Days of Yesteryear.  And thanks to all those who signed on as backers to my recent Kickstarter campaign.  The effort failed to raise the funding needed, but I'll always remember your kind support.
***************************
TRIVIA QUESTION:  I've recently been contacted by someone who wants to know if the piano player in Dillinger (1945-see post here) is the boogie-woogie artist Albert Ammons. Please leave comment or drop me a line if you know.
****************************
 HELP!!!!!!!!!!
Now that I've got your attention: I'm still on the lookout for a movie called Katie Did It (1951) for this year-long series on the career of Ann Blyth.  It seems to be a rare one.  Please contact me on this blog or at my email: JacquelineTLynch@gmail.com if you know where I can lay my hands on this film.  Am willing to buy or trade, or wash windows in exchange.  Maybe not the windows part.  But you know what I mean.

Also, if anybody has any of Ann's TV appearances, there's a few I'm missing from Switch, the Dennis Day Show (TV), the DuPont Show with June Allyson, This is Your Life, Lux Video Theatre.  Also any video clips of her Oscar appearances.  Release the hounds.  And let me know, please. 

***************************
A new collection of essays, some old, some new, from this blog titled Movies in Our Time: Hollywood Mimics and Mirrors the 20th Century is now out in eBook, and in paperback here.


I’ll provide a free copy, either paperback or eBook or both if you wish, to bloggers in exchange for an honest review.  Just email me at JacquelineTLynch@gmail.com with your preference of format, your email address, and an address to mail the paperback (if that’s your preference).  Thanks.