Lauren Bacall (1924-2014)

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EddieLarkin
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Lauren Bacall (1924-2014)

#1 Post by EddieLarkin » Tue Aug 12, 2014 7:55 pm


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hearthesilence
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Re: Passages

#2 Post by hearthesilence » Tue Aug 12, 2014 8:20 pm

Sigh. Rough week.

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Feego
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Re: Passages

#3 Post by Feego » Tue Aug 12, 2014 8:28 pm

Another one of the greats. All that comes to my mind is that magic smile as she makes her final exit in her first film:

Image

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jbeall
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Re: Passages

#4 Post by jbeall » Tue Aug 12, 2014 8:51 pm

Sad news. She was my kind of curmudgeon:
In old age, she raged against what she saw as the mediocrity of contemporary Hollywood, as represented by everything from the career of Tom Cruise to the Twilight movies that her granddaughter dragged her to see. “She said it was the greatest vampire film ever made,” Bacall recalled. “After the film was over, I wanted to smack her across the head with my shoe.”
Instead, Bacall bought the child a DVD of FW Murnau’s 1922 classic Nosferatu. “Now that’s a vampire film,” she told her sternly.

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Re: Passages

#5 Post by bamwc2 » Tue Aug 12, 2014 9:02 pm

Damn, that's a great tidbit, jbeall.

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Shrew
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Re: Passages

#6 Post by Shrew » Tue Aug 12, 2014 9:11 pm

Not to rain on everyone's Lauren Bacall parade, but I remember that Twilight quote from several years back. It came from a Twitter account that turned out to be a fake and has long been suspended, but that quote got reposted by a million different blogs, pop culture sites, and tumblrs, and even made it onto her IMDB page. It's possible it may have originated in an interview somewhere and then been reposted by the Twitter account, but sadly I doubt it. Same thing applies to the quotes about Tom Cruise, shittiness of contemporary actors, and being an l-word liberal.

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domino harvey
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Re: Passages

#7 Post by domino harvey » Tue Aug 12, 2014 9:35 pm

Shame about Bacall. By sheer coincidence I was just watching How to Marry a Millionaire earlier this evening. Fewer and fewer classic era stars left

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Re: Passages

#8 Post by colinr0380 » Wed Aug 13, 2014 3:46 am

It was particularly nice that Bacall put in some great supporting performances in recent films such as Jonathan Glazer's Birth, Paul Schrader's The Walker and Lars von Trier's Dogville and to a slightly lesser extent Manderlay. In most cases giving the key lines and subtly clarifying the themes of the films which often take the other the characters the rest of the film to realise for themselves, if they do at all.

A 1940s megastar, still relevant and producing fascinating work in the first decade of the 21st century.

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Re: Passages

#9 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Wed Aug 13, 2014 9:05 am

I know her mostly from TV interviews and getting mugged on The Sopranos.

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domino harvey
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Re: Passages

#10 Post by domino harvey » Wed Aug 13, 2014 4:29 pm

Then you owe it to yourself to expand your horizons and watch some of her films! Any of the ones she made with Bogart will do for starters

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matrixschmatrix
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Re: Passages

#11 Post by matrixschmatrix » Wed Aug 13, 2014 4:33 pm

I loved her stuff with Bogart, particularly To Have and Have Not, but I was even more taken aback on seeing her in Written on the Wind- she's overshadowed a bit by Bogie's charisma in their collaborations, but in Sirk's context she's a powerhouse, and to my eye commands the whole film.

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Re: Passages

#12 Post by Movie-Brat » Wed Aug 13, 2014 4:50 pm

Admittedly, I had only seen her in Misery. :oops:

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Re: Passages

#13 Post by domino harvey » Wed Aug 13, 2014 4:55 pm

Since the Bogart/Bacall Signature Collection is OOP, any of you could do worse than this set: Dark Passage and Key Largo are my picks of the best BB pairings and well worth the $15 alone (And since Blood Alley is godawful and Designing Woman is merely okay, that's good news)

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matrixschmatrix
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Re: Passages

#14 Post by matrixschmatrix » Wed Aug 13, 2014 5:03 pm

You could also spring for this set, which incorporates all four from the Bogart/Bacall set and a flood of other great movies at an extremely reasonable price. You get stuck with flipper discs and some of them were incorrectly mastered in the set I got, though.

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Re: Passages

#15 Post by domino harvey » Wed Aug 13, 2014 5:04 pm

That might be a lot for someone just dipping their toes into these kind of films to spring for at once, but yes, that set is filled with a LOT of great films (which I already have from their earlier boxed set appearances). What's wrong with the mastering?

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matrixschmatrix
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Re: Lauren Bacall (1924-2014)

#16 Post by matrixschmatrix » Wed Aug 13, 2014 7:06 pm

There were a few problems, but the one that I specifically remember is that they put the wrong movie on for Dark Victory (as I recall, it was a second copy of Treasure of the Sierra Madre instead), so I had to buy it separately.I believe the actual files are all exactly the same as they were in their various box sets when they were put in correctly, though.

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Lauren Bacall (1924-2014)

#17 Post by hanshotfirst1138 » Tue Aug 19, 2014 7:52 pm

Here's looking at you, kid :(. She was active well into here golden years too. Hadn't read that stuff about her criticism of modern Hollywood, but interesting stuff, to be sure. She was a legend, and the last of an amazing era. She will be very much missed :(.

Incidentally, didn't know this, but apparently she was a hell of a chess player too.
Last edited by hanshotfirst1138 on Thu Aug 21, 2014 10:33 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Lauren Bacall (1924-2014)

#18 Post by Ashirg » Tue Aug 19, 2014 9:29 pm

TCM to Remember Lauren Bacall with Marathon on Sept. 15-16

The following is the complete schedule for TCM's tribute to Lauren Bacall. (times are ET)

Monday, Sept. 15
8 p.m. - Private Screenings: Lauren Bacall (2005)
9 p.m. - To Have and Have Not (1944)
11 p.m. - The Big Sleep (1946)
1 a.m. - How to Marry a Millionaire (1953)
2:45 a.m. - Private Screenings: Lauren Bacall (2005)
3:45 a.m. - Harper (1966)

Tuesday, Sept. 16
6 a.m. - Bright Leaf (1950)
8 a.m. - Young Man with a Horn (1950)
10 a.m. - Dark Passage (1947)
Noon - Key Largo (1948)
2 p.m. - Blood Alley (1955)
4 p.m. - Sex and the Single Girl (1964)
6 p.m. - Designing Woman (1953)

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Re: Lauren Bacall (1924-2014)

#19 Post by ianthemovie » Fri Sep 05, 2014 9:42 am

Interesting to note that until Bacall's passing two weeks ago Young Man with a Horn was one of the very few classical Hollywood films in which all three of the stars--Kirk Douglas, Doris Day, and Bacall--were still living. Are there any others?

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Re: Lauren Bacall (1924-2014)

#20 Post by domino harvey » Fri Sep 05, 2014 12:53 pm

Up until recently Baby Doll had the distinction as well

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Re: Lauren Bacall (1924-2014)

#21 Post by Lost Highway » Tue Sep 23, 2014 4:08 am

Has anybody else read David Thomson's rather sour obituary/career assessment of Bacall in this month's Sight & Sound ? I'm not of the opinion that we have to pretend that someone was the greatest artist and most wonderful human being ever after their death but but apart from sprinkling his assessment with petty personal attacks (apparently she was a "social bore") Thomson yet again reveals his typically misogynistic bias which shows little understanding of women's roles, both on and off screen in the middle of the 20th century. Fine, so Lauren Bacall was a limited actress (having read her autobiography, she'd be the first to say so) but so were plenty of other stars of the period whose careers thrived because they were cast in roles which made good use of their star appeal. Bacall projected self-confidence, sex appeal, smarts and wit. She had a precocious maturity which made her seem wise beyond her years at the age of 19. She wasn't a girl, she emerged as a fully formed woman who demanded to be taken as an equal. These qualities combined with the fact that the camera adored her made her a compelling and unique screen presence.

Despite writing about classic Hollywood, there is no attempt by Thomson to put her career in any sort of historical or sociological context. There is no mention that Bacall's career suffered because she was required to put her marriage and family first. Bogart did allow her to work but only if it didn't interfere with his career and her duties as a wife. This limited the roles she could take and stunted her career just as it was about to flourish. By the time she lost her husband to cancer and this most quintessential of 1940s stars tried to make a comeback, it was the 50s and female ideals had changed. The Hollywood landscape was now dominated by sex pots (Monroe), wholesome girls next door (Day) and pixies (Audrey Hepburn, Leslie Caron) and there was little room for the wisecracking screwball dames and femme fatales of the 40s, of which Bacall was a blend (her screen persona was essentially that of a benign femme fatale). Thomson blames her for being boring in 50s "good girl" roles, rather than blaming the writers or the studio for not giving her material which played to her strengths.

Thomson describes Bacall's combination of angular beauty and assertive sexuality as vampiric, which nastily casts this most quintessential of Hawksian women as a predatory ghoul. Thomson can't even be bothered to assess her late career resurgence, when she appeared in the films of indie mavericks like Altman, Glazer and Von Trier rather than simply cashing pay checks like many of her surviving contemporaries. He makes it sound like she was totally washed up after her 40s rise to stardom and her late career triumphs are brushed under the carpet.

Thomson's nasty take on women has always rankled with me. Several actresses are chastised for loosing their looks in his Biographical Dictionary of Film. Do we really need a film historian to supports the view that female actors have passed their sell-by date once they mature and have lost their allure for him ? He is a sexist old troll and I'm sure Sight & Sound could get someone more insightful to write about classic Hollywood. Karina Longworth currently shows up Thomson for the dinosaur he is in her fabulous podcast "You Must Remember This" which de-constructs Hollywood myths clinging to classic stars with great insight and without mud-slinging. Someone pass of her number to Sight & Sound and put Thomson in retirement where he belongs.
Last edited by Lost Highway on Tue Sep 23, 2014 12:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Lauren Bacall (1924-2014)

#22 Post by colinr0380 » Tue Sep 23, 2014 11:58 am

Thomson does appear to elevate Nicole Kidman over all others, so I approached his Bacall slam provocation piece from that perspective - of Bacall's no nonsense antithesis to Kidman's ethereal fragility not being Thomson's thing. (That's what makes Bacall, and Anne Heche come to that, a great contrasting figure to Kidman in Birth)

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Re: Lauren Bacall (1924-2014)

#23 Post by Gregory » Tue Sep 23, 2014 3:42 pm

Rarely do I read Thomson but I recall him saying some very odd things, such as this about Huppert in White Material:
The costumes are strange—Huppert’s woman wears little girl dresses. And Huppert herself—this comes as no surprise, in the light of her audacious career—braves the light and the heat with no make-up (except for lipstick worn like war paint).
"Little girl dresses"? And does he think that mascara and eyeshadow somehow provide essential protection from the elements on a coffee plantation and that a woman wearing a minimum of makeup is essentially naked? In fact, I thought it was striking that her character was shown to still apply lipstick even as chaos loomed, yet Thomson calls the lack of makeup audacious.

Pardon the digression from Bacall.

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Re: Lauren Bacall (1924-2014)

#24 Post by jvdsq » Fri Dec 05, 2014 3:11 am

I loved her in Dark Passage. She was superb as the woman who helps an escaped inmate (Bogart) to hide out.

The character she plays in How to Marry a Millionaire was a complex one. She comes across as a rather cranky and witchy woman who just wants to marry for money. At the same time, the viewers find out that this character had already been in a lousy marriage, which explains some of her attitudes in this film.

Terrific actress. May she rest in peace.

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