Jesse James: Blood Brothers and The Long Riders / Part 4

25 Apr


midnight rider / greg allman

The Long Riders has been made on faith and idealism.”
 – Stacy Keach

The Carradine brothers
as The Youngers

The Keach brothers
as The James’ brothers 

The Quaid brothers …
as The Miller brothers

The Guest brothers
as The Ford brothers

So who gets Top Bill?

Brothers Randy and Stacy Keach were Cast as Jesse and Frank James – and were also Executive Producers of the Movie.
And Co-Writers of the Movie.
And you’d expect Jesse and Frank James to be the main Characters in the movie. Right?
So the Keach boys should get Top Bill. Right?

Nope.

The Carradines were Top Billed on the Movie Posters
and on the Film Credits.

Were the Carradines bigger Stars at that time? Guess so?

Or was there some agreement?

Don’t know?

WIKIPEDIA: “In order to make the movie, David Carradine forfeited his customary profit participation; the Keach brothers gave up the extra profit percentages they were entitled to as executive producer in order that the Carradine brothers got the same amount of profits. When the film went over its original $7.5 million budget, the Keaches forfeited their executive producer fees. “The Long Riders has been made on faith and idealism,” said Keach.”

In the end, the movie Cost: $10,000,000 (estimated)
and 
Made: $23,000,000, USA, June 1981.

Incredibly, that very same year, (1980) another Western by United ArtistsHeaven’s Gate, completely decimated the company.
It’s one of the most infamous stories in Filmdom where Director Michael Cimino was responsible for massive overruns in budget and time …
(But that’s another story)

Blood Brothers Part 5 next…

Jesse James (1939): Blood Brothers / Part 3

23 Apr


Shenandoah / The Brothers Four

Wikipedia: “Oh Shenandoah” (also called simply “Shenandoah” or “Across the Wide Missouri“) is a traditional American folk song of uncertain origin, dating to the early 19th century. The song appears to have originated with Canadian and American voyageurs or fur traders traveling down the Missouri River in canoes, and has developed several different sets of lyrics. Some lyrics refer to the Oneida chief Shenandoah and a canoe-going trader who wants to marry his daughter.”

Not sure why, but as a kid I always related the song to the American Civil War – especially the South. It’s older that that though. It’s a beautiful song, but to me it’s also sad. Like a lament for unrequited Love. Yet inspiring. I first heard this song on Harry Belafonte’s  Classic live double album Belafonte at Carnegie Hall (1959). Harry was at his peak at that time and he does a superb job on it. Here The Brothers Four have a great interpretation.

Fitting.

“Having a great time in West Virginia. Home soon.”

A staged photo? Probably not. Lots of kids picked up a rifle. And knew how to use it.

Blood Brothers Part 4 next…

Jesse James (1939): Blood Brothers / Part 2

20 Apr


An American Trilogy / written and sung by Mickey Newbury

An American Trilogy

Mickey Newbury recorded this song in 1971.

Singer / Songwriter Genius

It’s said that over 465 versions of “An American Trilogy” have been recorded by different artists. 
                  The Three songs in Newbury’s Trilogy are:
1. Dixie: a blackface minstrel song that became the unofficial anthem of the Confederacy in the Civil War.
2. “The Battle Hymn of the Republic”, the marching song of the Union Army during the Civil War.
3. “All My Trials”, originally a Bahamian lullaby, but closely related to African American spirituals, and well-known through folk music revivalists. Also very widely interpreted.

Beautifully done by a Songwriter who is yet to achieve the appreciation he deserves. But I felt his song fit nicely here.

Jesse James (1939) /
The Long Riders (1980)

Kin Deep / Blood Strong
Little Dixie and the Long Riders

Long Rider – “A long-distance traveler on horseback, often an explorer or adventurer. Unlike an endurance racer, a long rider sets his or her own schedule and often travels alone.”
From Cowboy Bob’s Dictionary / http://www.lemen.com/dictionary-l.html

Little Dixie

Little Dixie is a historic 13 to 17 county region of mid-to-upper-mid Missouri along the Missouri River, settled at first primarily by migrants from the hemp and tobacco districts of Kentucky, Virginia, and Tennessee. Because Southerners settled there first, the pre-Civil War culture was similar to that of the Upper South. This area of Missouri was largely settled by people from the Upper South, especially Kentucky and Tennessee, and became known as Little Dixie for this reason.

When the Southerners migrated to Missouri, they brought their cultural, social, agricultural, architectural, political and economic practices, including slavery. On average Missouri’s slave population was only 10 percent, but in Little Dixie, county and township slave populations ranged from 20 to 50 percent by 1860. Naturally most of these folks supported the South – the Confederacy.

Much of the dramatic build-up to the Civil War centered on the violence that erupted on the Kansas–Missouri border between pro- and anti-slavery militias.

However, there were other events that shaped the James James and the James- Younger Gang:

In May 1863, while at his family’s farm, a teenage Jesse was ambushed and his stepfather hung from a tree (he survived) by Union militiamen seeking the whereabouts of Frank and his fellow insurgents. Frank James was already riding with a troop of Southern guerrilla marauders. This incident no doubt contributed to his hatred of the North/Union.

 Quantrill’s Raiders

“William Quantrill was born in Ohio on 31st July 1837. He had severe behavioral problems and as a teenager was convicted of murder. Released in 1855 he became a teacher at Fort Wayne, Indiana. (Really?) 

Quantrill also tried his hand as a professional gambler, but this was not successful and he found work as a teacher in Lawrence, Indiana. However, accused of several crimes, he was forced to flee from the town in disgrace.

A strong supporter of slavery, Quantrill joined the Confederate Army on the outbreak of the American Civil War. He fought at Lexington, but disliked the regimentation of army life and decided to form a band of guerrilla fighters. As well as attacking Union troops the Quantrill Raiders also robbed mail coaches, murdered supporters of Abraham Lincoln and persecuted communities in Missouri and Kansas that Quantrill considered to be anti-Confederate. He also gained a reputation for murdering members of the Union Army that his guerrillas had taken prisoner.

In 1862 Quantrill and his men were formally declared to be outlaws. By 1863 Quantrill was the leader of over 450 men. This included Frank James, Jessie James, Cole Younger and James Younger. With this large force he committed one of the worst atrocities of the Civil War when he attacked the town of Lawrence. During the raid on 21st August, 1863, Quantrill’s gang killed 150 inhabitants and destroyed over 180 buildings. Quantrill found it difficult to keep his men under control and they tended to go off and commit their own crimes. By 1865 he had only 33 followers left. He was shot and died from his wounds on 6th June, 1865.” 

By John Simkin for Spartacus Educational (john@spartacus-educational.com)

Jesse Carries On

The American Civil War ended about 1865. But the James and Youngers just kept on going. For about 17 years!! Jesse and his gangs robbed banks, trains, and stagecoaches in at least ten States: Missouri, Kentucky, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Texas, Arkansas, Louisiana, Alabama, and West Virginia.

Between robbery’s. Jesse and Frank relaxing.

Blood Brothers Part 3 next…

 

Spring ?? 2018 Part 2 … and counting …

16 Apr


the blue Canadian rockies – Valdy

Today …

… I heard a noise outside … sounded like a snow blower.

It was. 

The only birdie we’ve seen this Spring.

dreams of yesteryear … somewhere

Jesse James (1939): Blood Brothers / Part 1

16 Apr


the night they drove old Dixie down / Joan Baez / written by Robbie Robertson

“Those who love are never parted.”
– anon

Jesse James (1939)

Young Jesse James

James Family Photo – Jesse James (back row third from the left) next to his first cousin Zerelda “Zee” Mimms who became his wife. 

If there’s a theme that runs through the Jesse James saga,
it’s 
Family and Brotherhood.
Blood.

The James – Younger Gang:

Brothers that rode together:
– Jesse and Frank James
– Cole, Jim, John, and Bob Younger
– Charley Ford and Robert Ford
– Ed Miller and and Clell Miller

James – Younger gang … 1876 edition

Blood Deep / Blood Strong

Back then people stuck together:
‘Right or Wrong’? ‘Law and Order’?
Be damned.
Family is Right. Family is Law.
Clan.
Kin deep.
No bullet could penetrate that.
(Unless it came from within)

No wonder Jesse James seemed so invincible and impossible to catch. And had such a Robin Hood image (that is still intact today)

And why Robert Ford’s betrayal is so unforgivable.

John Carradine

Which brings us to John Carrindine – who played Robert Ford in Jesse James (1939).

Between the 1930’s and he 1990’s John Carradine
appeared in about 230 movies!!!
– not counting TV appearances and TV movies.
That makes him one of the most prolific Actors in Film History.
Not sure how many Westerns he made,
but there would have been a lot.
Several were Western Classics including Stagecoach (1939),
Johnny Guitar (1954) The Kentuckian (1955), The Shootist (1970) …

Between scenes he had time for 4 wives and 5 children,
most of whom also became Actors.

3 of his sons Starred in another Jesse James Western called:

The Long Riders (1980)

Stacy Keatch (center) as Jesse James, David Carradine as Cole Younger (left ), and Randy Quaid as Clell Miller (right).

3 excellent posters

A   Remarkable Cast
of 4 sets of Brothers:

Jesse James (James Keach) and Frank James (Stacy Keach)
Cole Younger (David Carradine), Jim Younger (Keith Carradine) and Bob Younger (Robert Carradine)
Ed Miller (Dennis Quaid) and Clell Miller (Randy Quaid)
Charley Ford (Christopher Guest) and Robert Ford (Nicholas Guest)

Most of these depicted outlaws did ride for the James – Younger gang at one time or another, but the movie takes liberty in putting them all together at the same time. But, like most Jesse James movies, this is not a documentary.
Wikipedia says: “The James-Younger gang … had over 50 different members over the years.”
The actual gang that attempted the ill fated Northfield Bank robbery consisted of of brothers Jesse and Frank James; brothers Bob, Jim, and Cole Younger; Clell Miller; Charlie Pitts; and Bill Stiles.

more coming … 

UPDATE ….

14 Apr

Howdy …

Finally got my computer working properly …
yes it was a WordPress issue. 

Been working the last 5 days
so haven’t had a lot of time. 

Jesse … the kid.

Also been working on a post called
Jesse James (1939): Blood Brothers

Hope to have it up in the next day or two. 

Thanks for your patience! 

Humboldt …

9 Apr


amazing grace

 

Humboldt Bus Tragedy shocks Canada

8 Apr

Friday, April 6
Horrific Bus Crash kills 15

Every day there’s tragedies all around the world.
But when they happen in your front yard …
It kicks you in the gut.


There were many demonstrations of respect and condolence. 

In Winnipeg

As One


In Calgary


In Toronto 

Spring ?? 2018

8 Apr


jack jones / thats what friends are for / written by paul williams

I huffed and I puffed .. 

Today.
I heard a noise outside … sounded like a lawn mower.
But it was a snow blower.

The only bird we’ve seen this Spring.

You woke me!??? For like what?

Looking for some help …

8 Apr

Hi Folks …

I’ve run into a problem:
Suddenly I can’t upload any images. 

I get this:
“File could not be uploaded because errors occurred while uploading.”

I can’t do anything except enter TEXT. 

Everything was working fine until yesterday.
I could uploading several images at once up until then. And they all went in pretty quickly. 

I’ve sent a HELP request to WordPress, but I don’t know how long it will take to get a reply – or if they will be able to help?

So … if you have any notion what the problem might be? I’d appreciate it. 

Thank You. 

 

Jesse James (1939) Continued: The Stunt of Infamy

5 Apr


The Long Riders Soundtrack / Ry Cooder

Jesse James (1939)

A Stunt of Infamy

Have you seen this stunt below? It’s in Jesse James (1939).
It’s one of the most famous movie stunts in Film History.

But not because it’s spectacular. (Though it is)But because of what it stirred up.  You see, the horse died. Panicked and drowned.  The public outrage and outcry was so great
that it led to the creation of:

The American Humane Association

http://www.americanhumane.org/

In 1940, American Humane (AH) became the sole monitoring body for the humane treatment of animals on the sets of Hollywood films and other broadcast productions. American Humane is best known for its trademarked certification “No Animals Were Harmed®”, which appears at the end of film or television credits.

“We are first to serve, wherever animals are in need of rescue, shelter, protection or security. Through our innovative leadership initiatives – from our “No Animals Were Harmed®” program in Hollywood to broad-based farm and conservation animal welfare certifications, to rapid response rescue and care across the country – American Humane sets the gold standard as the most visionary and effective animal welfare organization in the nation.”

Prior to this there were no safety standards for beast – or man – in film stunting.

This changed it all.

Meanwhile … 

Coming to the fore was legendary stuntman Yakima Canutt. He, along with other rodeo performers, brought a battery of rodeo techniques that Canutt would expand and improve upon, including horse falls and safer methods for many kinds of stunts, including gear and techniques for performing and planning stunts, harnesses, cable rigs and protective equipment to make many stunts almost foolproof. Both horses and stuntmen were now trained in stunt schools. Medical support and First Aide became readily available. 

Does that mean stunting is now 100% safe?
Of course not. Stunting is a dangerous by it’s nature.
And although such dangers have been greatly minimized and monitored there will always be occasional incidents/accidents.
Yet it is still vastly improved over what went on before.
Prior to 1939 nobody really seemed to care.

The Jump across Devil’s Gulch

But just where did the idea for the infamous stunt come from?

Presently there’s a bridge across the Gulch

I believe it was likely inspired by another piece of Jesse James lore:
Jesse’s famous jump across Devil’s Gulch.
(Good Grief!! I know that sounds like something from a dime novel or a matinee serial … or something?!)
But it isn’t.

The back story:

The James/Younger Gang’s bank robbery at Northfield, Minnesota was a disaster. When the smoke cleared the Younger brothers were badly wounded and captured. Jesse and Frank James raced out of town with a rabid posse hot on their tail.
The ensuing chase resulted in the legend of
Jesse James: the leap across Devil’s Gulch, South Dakota.
Much disputed.

Many believe the 18 to 20 foot jump is impossible
– or at least pretty unlikely .

I don’t. 

Why?

Ask these questions:

Did Jesse have the chops? the will? the courage? the bravado? the desperation? the horsemanship to pull off such a stunt?

Damn right. On all counts. 

The only question that remains is: did he have the horse to pull it off?
My guess is that Jesse wouldn’t be riding a nag. He was an expert horseman who had performed many robberies and holdups
and would likely have a pretty good steed for getaways.

And with a bloodthirsty posse hot on his trail
desperate times call for desperate measures.
The smell of death is a strong motivator.

I definitely think he would chance such a thing. And could pull it off.
But I’m not saying it really happened.
Just that he could have done it.

Doubt that we’ll ever know.

You gotta be KIDding?

1 Apr


Behind Blue Eyes

What good would an April Fools joke be if it didn’t fool anybody?
(Fake News I guess?)

I’ve been fooled a few times myself over the years.

But I also feel a bit guilty about doing it because there’s always a few people
who don’t realize it’s a joke – and they go around telling everybody
about this wonderful new movie about Billy the Kid
– starring his (non-existent) grandson.

ANYWAY …

NO. There no new Billy the Kid movie. (Sadly. I wish there was.)

YES: there is such a person (or more) called James Tyler McCarty.
(Though I didn’t know that) But it’s not this guy that I made up.
(Seems you can make up just about any name
and such a person will actually exist).

NO: Billy the Kid has not been “Resurrected”. (Don’t tell Spielberg).

NOR does Sergio Estafa (which means ‘Scam’ in Spanish) exist.
(I don’t think?) 

YES there are a few “Sam Westwoods” – but my Sam is a composite name
from Sam Peckinpah and Clint Eastwood.

NO“Bruce Willis” and “Benedict Cumberbach”
are not interested in my fictitious movie.
(I don’t think? Too bad).

NO: this image of James Tyler McCarty is not real.

This image is a composite I constructed from these pics I found on the Net:

I don’t know who these good looking folks are, but I used this guy’s  body (in circle).

Then I found this image of Martin Short:

Which I reversed horizontally:

Then I removed the hat
and enlarged his ears.

Then I found a Billy the Kid hat on the Net.
(You can buy one of these)

I dropped it on Marty’s head.
(Great Scott!)

Then I dropped Marty’s head on the body.

Voila !!
Instant Billy.

Then I wrote up a bunch of ridiculous crap that sounded somewhat credible.

It was fun.
I hope it was fun for you.

New Billy the Kid Movie to star his grandson

31 Mar


Bad Company

James Tyler McCarty is the New Billy

“The resemblance is amazing!”

The Resurrection of Billy the Kid

HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA — In an astonishing turn of events, United Artists film makers have revealed that a new Billy the Kid movie of will begin production this July – starring newly discovered Billy the Kid’s grandson, James Tyler McCarty – in a movie that was initially planned to be a documentary!

But following recent forensic evidence and DNA tests that’conclusively identified’ McCarty is indeed “a direct descendant of “The Kid“, Producer Sergio Estafa started thinking differently.

“When we travelled to Gallveston (Texas) to interview Tyler, everything changed. We were shocked at his resemblance to Billy.”

“His jawline, those ears. It’s uncanny!” says Director Sam Westwood.

Tyler – age 30 had been raised on the ranch near Galveston and was already a working cowboy.

“Once we saw how he looked, and his cowboy skills, we started thinking about a Movie instead. You can’t fake this stuff.” says Estafa. “This kid’s legit.” 

Director Westwood tested Tyler on his skills. “Tyler’s gun handling and horsemanship are exceptional. This guy’s got the pedigree.”

But what about acting?

“This is an Action Movie.” says Estafa. “We’re not going for Oscars.”

Adds Westwood. “The Kid’s already been Screen Tested. He’s as good as Arnold Schwarzenegger.”

Support Cast?:

“That’s Ongoing.” says Westwood. “Were talking to Bruce Willis and Benedict Cumberbach right now. Bruce says he always wanted to make a Western.”

The production will utilize ‘on location’ shooting as much as possible.

“But we might even use Old Tucson. Who’s gonna know?”

Stay tuned!!

 

 

Yankee Valley Historical Society !!

30 Mar


When Johnnie Comes Marching Home 

My friend from work, John Bishop is a member of a Civil War Re-enactment group called

out of Calgary, Alberta – or thereabouts. 

They’ve got a FaceBook Site:
https://www.facebook.com/pg/Yankee-Valley-Historical-Society-1209223842527253/photos/?ref=page_internal

They’ve got Cannon …

They load ’em up … 

Fire in the Hole !!!

Ka BOOOOOM !!!

It’s fun. Serious fun. It’s a passion.
BUT …
You’ve got to know what you’re doing.
You’re handling explosives and operating explosive devices.

That being said … 
Let’s get on with the fun! 

On Display

Demonstration

Night Fire

Impressive !!!

John Bishop

But it’s not all about cannon … 

It’s cannon and friends !! …

Cannon and Knights …

Cannon and muskets …

Confederate Rifleman … 

Cannon and Redcoats !! …

Cannon and horses … 

Cannon and Pipers … 

… and more Friends !!! 

 For you and your Friends John

Tyrone Power / Jesse James / Part 2

29 Mar


1972 / Glendale Train / New Riders of the Purple Sage

Jesse James (1939)


Jesse James was a smash hit and the fourth largest-grossing film of 1939, behind Gone with the Wind, The Wizard of Oz, and The Hunchback of Notre Dame, and in front of Mr. Smith Goes to Washington.
That’s a hell of a year for Movies – those are 4 Classics.

A sequel, The Return of Frank James, directed by Fritz Lang and with Henry Fonda reprising his role as Frank James along with a variety of other actors playing the same characters as they had in Jesse James,
was released in 1940.

It seems almost daily that somebody finds another photo
of Jesse James or Billy the Kid.
A lot are fakes or false of course, but even some that
are authentic are so bizarre that you have shake your head.
Like this one with Robert Ford (Jesse assassin)
and Jesse himself seated together.
It’s rather amazing.

And is that a top knot on Jesse’s head?
Seem so.

I wanted to post an authentic Jesse James “Wanted Poster” here,
but I couldn’t identify even one that I can confidence in.

 

Henry Hathaway Director of Westerns / RAWHIDE (1951) / Tyrone Power / Jesse James

27 Mar


Kingston Trio

Jesse James (1939)

Jesse Woodson James (1847 – 1882) American outlaw, bank and train robber, guerrilla, leader of the James–Younger Gang, member of infamous Quantrill raiders.

I woulda put my money on The Kid.

Tyrone Power as Jesse James / Jesse James as himself (age 17) / Billy the Kid (age?)

Between 1921 and 2007 we count 28 movies about Jesse James
or where Jesse James was a prominent character.
Between 1911 and 2011 we count 23 movies about Billy the Kid
or where Billy the Kid was a prominent character.
If this was a football game, The Kid needs a touchdown.

But it’s not a football game.
It’s the stories of two killers. Two men driven to violence and killing …
who have become Western folk heroes.
Until they were assassinated by their friends.

Jesse James / 1939
Tyrone Power

When Jesse James is played by a Matinee Idol you know he ain’t gonna be a Badguy.

The movie was criticized for Historical inaccuracies.
Not that I care. It is not a documentary.

Jesse James (1939) was the 4th movie about Jesse James.

The Epic Story of the most Colourful Outlaw who ever lived

Motion Pictures’ Supreme Epic !
The world branded him . . . an OUTLAW . . . a KILLER . . . a WOLF . . . but to the simple folk who knew him he was a victim of injustice – and to the girl who loved him he was brave and a gentle lover ! !
The Tremendous Dramatic Thrills Of the Midwest’s Lawless Era will burst from our screen…

Young Tyrone Power (age 25) as Jesse James

1939 – Tyrone was voted the #1 male box-office draw in Hollywood by exhibitors.

Henry Fonda (age 34) as Frank James

Henry’s second Western toward becoming one of the Greatest Western Stars of all time.

Randolph Scott (aged 41) as Will Wright

Westerns personified.

Nancy Kelly as Zerelda “Zee” James

A successful child actress, radio star, then a leading lady in 27 movies in the 1930s and ’40s, Her younger brother was actor Jack Kelly (Maverick).

John Carradine (age 33) was backshooter Bob Ford

In 1939 Carradine also Starred in John Ford’s great Western Classic Stagecoach with John Wayne. 

Reviews:

The whole film can be watched in 720 resolution and glorious Technicolor on YouTube:
https://youtu.be/LZTSwk8P6I

Upcoming … More Tyrone Power and Jesse James 

Image

Beau Jest

23 Mar

Henry Hathaway Director of Westerns / RAWHIDE (1951) / Tyrone Power / Part 2

21 Mar

From The Eddie Duchin Story 1956

Tyrone Power

Tyrone Power USMC

Power was an excellent pilot and as a
US Marine Corps pilot in World War II,
he flew supplies into wounded troops out of Iwo Jima and Okinawa.

American Campaign Medal, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal
and the World War II Victory Medal.


1939 / Stardust / Eddie Duchin and his Orchestra

Up Next:
Tyrone Power Western Posters 

Henry Hathaway Director of Westerns / RAWHIDE (1951) / Tyrone Power / Part 1 Updated

20 Mar


Nat

Tyrone Power

Roots that Run Deep

Tyrone Power I

Tyrone was the third Tyrone Power in the Acting profession.
– going all the way back to William Grattan Tyrone Power:
Irish stage Actor, Comedian, Author and theatrical manager.
Sometimes called Tyrone Power I.

Through his paternal great-grandmother, Anne Gilbert, Power was related to the actor Laurence Olivier; through his paternal grandmother, stage actress Ethel Lavenu, he was related by marriage to author Evelyn Waugh; and through his father’s first cousin, Norah Emily Gorman Power, he was related to the theatrical director Sir (William) Tyrone Guthrie, founder of the Stratford Festival (now the Stratford Shakespeare Festival) in Canada and the Tyrone Guthrie Theatre in Minneapolis, Minnesota. We’re talking about an amazing heritage, linage and kinship in the Entertainment and and Acting fraternity/profession.

That’s a hell of a legacy.

Tyrone Power I was lost at sea in March 1841,
when the SS President disappeared without trace in the North Atlantic.
He was 46.

Tyrone Power II

Between 1886 and 1931 appeared worked in 47 Stage productions
– several Shakespearean.

Between 1914 to 1931 me appeared in 40 silent films
and one “Talkie“.
But that Talkie was interesting and notable. It was one of John Wayne’s
first Westerns, The Big Trail.

 Tyrone Sr. seemed to play a lot of badguys.

About as bad as you can get.

At home one night after shooting on the film ‘The Miracle Man‘ in 1931, he suffered a massive heart attack and died literally in the arms of his
17-year-old son, Tyrone Power.
He was 64 years old.

The Death of Tyrone Power

Madrid, Spain / November 1958. While filming the climactic swordfight scene with George Sanders for Solomon and Sheba, Power is suddenly stricken by a heart attack. He dies within an hour. 
Tyrone Power was 45 years old.

The son he had always wanted, Tyrone Power IV, was born 2 months after his death.
Young Tyrone active Actor with 21 acting credits.

UPCOMING:
Henry Hathaway Director of Westerns / RAWHIDE (1951) /
Tyrone Power / Part 2
and possibly a bit of Swashbuckling!

Mighty Niagara / photo essay 4 / Getting Wet

8 Mar


susan hayward

Niagara’s Fury / Journey Behind the Falls

Apart from going over in a barrel, there are several other ways to experience the Niagara Falls.
Rose was determined to do most of them. We passed on the Zipline.

Niagara’s Fury

Niagara’s Fury is sort of a interactive CineMax where you enter a theatre to be surrounded by the simulated sound, spray, rain, snow, thunder, lightning and other effects including motion while being told how Niagara evolved geologically. (Warning: Although I believe they have toned things down a bit in recent years, some of this show can be pretty scary to small children)
You’re going to get wet in there so they provide you with some protective rainwear. You are told not to take photos, but I think there’s another motive behind that rule because unless your camera is waterproof it’s definitely going to risk being damaged. It’s not too long a show, but it’s a bit of fun.

Journey Behind the Falls

Get ready to get wet.

Fun at the Portals.


I really do need to learn how to work this camera.
Anyway you can see that it’s a blast.

The Observation Platform

 Ah !!! What a day !!

Henry Hathaway Director of Westerns / RAWHIDE (1951) / Susan Hayward 2

28 Feb


you’ll never walk alone / doris day

Rawhide / 1951

Tyrone Power and Susan Hayward / Rawhide 1951

“You aim at all the things you have been told that stardom means — the rich life, the applause, the parties cluttered with celebrities. Then you find that you have it all. And it is nothing, really nothing. It is like a drug that lasts just a few hours, a sleeping pill. When it wears off, you have to live without its help.”
– Susan Hayward

Susan with Gary Cooper

Susan Haywood

The Child

The Starlet

The Star

Oscar Winner (1958) for ‘I Want to Live!‘ Susan was nominated 4 times.

1953 with John Wayne received the Henrietta World Film Favorite Actor and Actress Awards at the Golden Globes.

The Mother

Susan with her twin sons Gregory and Timothy

“When you’re dead, you’re dead. No one is going to remember me when I’m dead. Oh, maybe a few friends will remember me affectionately. Being remembered isn’t the most important thing, anyhow. It’s what you do when you are here that’s important.”


I remember you Susan.

Henry Hathaway Director of Westerns / RAWHIDE (1951) / Susan Hayward Westerns

27 Feb


me & my uncle / katy moffatt

Rawhide / 1951

The Westerns of Susan Hayward

Susan Hayward appeared in about 6 Westerns. She was Star – and a beauty.
They weren’t all Classics, but she shared the stage with Top Actors of the day.
Let’s have a look.

With Cooper and Widmark!
Two of the greatest Western Stars. 
Yikes!

Coming: Susan Hayward / Rawhide continued …

The Appaloosa (1966) revisited …

26 Feb


the ecstasy of gold / ennio morricone

Very (un)occasionally I look over My Favorite Pages (above). I don’t do this often because some of them were created years ago now – and they’re awful. Then I’m forced to fix ’em up. Back then I didn’t know how to operate WordPress very well – or edit images – and a few dozen other things. I’m no genius now, but I’ve gotten better. Such is the case of The Appoloosa (1966) starring Marlon Brando. My Page was awful. I consider this a great Western so it deserves much better treatment. Therefore, I’ve now beefed the Page up – included a bunch of stuff from my other posts and so on. Some images should still be re-worked, but t’s almost worth a look now.

The Appoloosa really is a great Western with several excellent scenes – some Classic.

Check out these two scenes: including the famous Scorpion Arm Wrestling scene:

This scene has a couple of stunning qualities. The first quality is that it has NO music. Did you notice that? It’s very rare for any film maker to exclude music from any scene of impact. But it works well here.

The other thing is Director Sydney Furie’s superb use of close up shots – something he employed to great effect throughout the film.

Furie lets the setting, the lighting, the composition, the dialogue, the Actors, and the close-ups deliver the impact. The effect is one of the greatest scenes in Western Movie history.

Emilio Fernandez

Marlon Brando

John Saxon

Likewise for this bit of film magic …

That’s how I always light my cigaros too.

Audios Amigos

Henry Hathaway Director of Westerns / RAWHIDE (1951) Part 2

20 Feb


me & my uncle / michael j. thoma

Rawhide / 1951

International Posters are often interesting
… and amusing.

Spanish Poster:

Spanish interpretation: The Mail of Hell

Croatian (?) poster: 

Croatian interpretation: Postal Station/Post Office

French posters:

French translation: The Attack of the Mail-Coach

I had to laugh at this poster below – it’s hilarious!

Look what they did to poor Tyrone Power!
A peeping Tyrone!

German poster: 

German translation: Two in the Trap

Evidently the word Rawhide doesn’t translate well to other languages.

Henry Hathaway Director of Westerns / RAWHIDE (1951) Part 1

19 Feb


they call the wind maria / harve presnell

Henry Hathaway Directed about 27 Westerns. Four during the 50’s.
In 1951, Hathaway entered the Golden Age of Westerns riding high,
Directing top projects Starring the top players of the day.
Such was Rawhide, Starring Susan Hayward and Tyrone Power.

Rawhide / 1951

A story told with a blazing .44 !

Power and Hayward, share Top Bill.

Famous Lone Pine (location) never looked so good.

Whew !… it’s steamy out here in the desert.

These steamy posters (and some Preview Trailers) were typical of a lot of Movie advertising in the 40’s and 50’s which often advertised Movies in completely misleading, sensationalized, exaggerated – or even non-existent – ways. It seemed that the Marketing people had free reign to sell the product any way they wanted or could. Inferred sexual shenanigans was a popular ploy. In other words, your likelihood of actually seeing Tyrone Power groping Susan Hayward was highly unlikely (if that’s what you were going to the movie for?) And didn’t happen.

The only real groper in the Movie is the backshooting, kid shooting, lecherous, leering JACK ELAM! (Did I mention that he plays a badguy?)
Although Jack had appeared in 13 previous movies, he says Rawhide was his breakthrough role – and he has a sizable part with plenty of dialogue.He had made his mark and in Rawhide, he really chews the scenery and steals almost every scene he’s in.

It’s interesting that some Support/Character Actors appeared
in more Classic Movies that Top Billed Stars.

Jack would be one of those.

Part 2 coming … 

the ladder …

8 Feb

http://h-akanai.tumblr.com/

The Ballad of Lefty Brown / A Review …

4 Feb

For Cindy over at Cindy Bruchman Blog https://cindybruchman.com/


Don McLean’s Masterpiece Vincent sung by Lianne La Havas

The Ballad of Lefty Brown is good Western. Not a Classic. But very good. If you like Westerns, it’s worth your time. And I’ll re-watch it again some day. This is not a B Western.

The whole movie hangs on Bill Pullman as Lefty – and Pullman is superb. I think he should have been nominated for his. I really had to do a double check to see if Lefty  really was Pullman – his character is such a departure – and appearance – from Pullman’s previous work. Check the poster – would you recognize that image of Lefty as Bill Pullman? I didn’t.

I kinda had the same feeling I had when I watched Billy Bob Thornton in Slingblade (1996) Is that really him? 

I can’t really say, but I’d guess Pullman’s most recognizable film role was as President Whitmore in Independence Day (1996).

But Bill’s been doing some good stuff since 1986. Including a couple of Westerns:

The Virginian (2000) Director / Actor (TV Production) well received.

In Wyatt Earp, Pullman played Ed Masterson who was Marshall of Dodge City and the oldest brother of the American West gunfighters Bat Masterson and James Masterson.
Masterson as shot and killed in downtown Dodge City by a drunk while attempting to enforce the gun laws.

Westerns unfortunately, are a genre that usually gets very little respect or attention among those that hand out the brass … the gold … or the Oscars.

The Cast

Peter Fonda as Edward Johnson: Peter Fonda has been known to loan (sell?) his name to small Western Film projects – often B Westerns – to bump up their publicity/profile – while only making slight or mere Cameo appearances in the movie. This is another of those. His screen time is not substantial. This gives the Lefty some promotional punch for sure – though it stands fine by itself. The Fonda name has rightful power in the Western film. Peter’s dad, Henry Fonda was in possibly in more Western Classics than any Actor in film history. Too many to list here. Jane chipped in with Cat Ballou, Electric Horseman, Comes a Horseman … While Peter had REAL roles in 3:10 to Yuma (2007) and The Hired Hand (1971) (a Favorite of mine). Curiously enough, you won’t likely recognize Peter in Lefty Brown either – and will have to do a double check to see which part he was playing. But I guess we’re all getting a bit older …

For his screen time he does and excellent and important job.

The rest of the Cast is also outstanding.

Jim Caviezel: Back in 2002, Jim starred as the Count in one of my Favorite Non-Western movies: The Count of Monte Cristo. He’s excellent here too.

He also played Warren Earp in Wyatt Earp (1996)

Wikipedia: Warren Earp was the youngest brother of Wyatt, Morgan, Virgil, James, and Newton Earp. Although he was not present during the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral, after Virgil was maimed in an ambush, Warren joined Wyatt and was in town when Morgan was assassinated. He also helped Wyatt in the hunt for the outlaws they believed responsible. Later in life, Warren developed a reputation as a bully and was killed in an argument in 1900.

Kathy Baker is  Billed second. She has a looong list of Awards in Stage, Film and TV. Does her usual excellent work here.

Tom Flanagan – As far as I can tell, this is Tom’s first Western? Fits him like a glove. You’ll recognize him – he’s been around. And he’s good. Those scars on his face are from a real knife fight.

Diego Josef plays the mysterious Kid. He’s got 2 Colts and some Acting chops. Real good.

All in all – a pretty good Western. 

That Rifle:

In my previous post I guessed that this rifle 

might be this one:

I have now found a better image of it (below):

And I now think it is:

Made popular by the movie (a Favorite) Quigley Down Under:

Quigley (Tom Selleck) on his Sharps Rifle: “It’s a lever-action breach-loader. Usual barrel length’s thirty inches. This one has an extra four. It’s converted to use a special forty-five caliber, hundred-and-ten-grain metal cartridge, with a five-hundred-forty-grain paper patch bullet. It’s fitted with double-set triggers, and a Vernier sight, marked up to twelve-hundred yards.
This one shoots a mite further.”

OK … not quite.

Ground Hog Day 2018 …

3 Feb

We waited breathlessly for the Hogs to wake up
and for the predictions to roll in …

It’s been a bitter Winter.
I was shoveling 8 inches of snow just this morning.

Balzac Billy

When Billy stepped out it was bleakish -20 C (-4 F) and snowing.
Our hopes weren’t high.

Then … !

Early Spring !!!

(I’m still on the fence)
but here’s hoping!

 

Mighty Niagara / photo essay 3 / Up the Tower

30 Jan


Miracles

Cloudy and rainy when we landed
in Hamilton (Ontario).
Ontario had been having a bad Spring.


We headed for the Car Rental place.
A Kia Forte.

Off we go … 

Up the Tower

The name Niagara that was assigned to the area comes from the First Nations word “Onghiara” or “Oniawgarah”
which means “thundering waters.”

 In the late 1850’s Jean-Francois Gravelet of France (aka The Great Blondin) walked a tightrope across the gorge.  He expanded his act to include somersaults, walking blindfolded, and riding a bicycle. He also walked the tightrope with his hands and feet manacled, cooked an omelette, and once even lowered a rope to the Maid of the Mist, pulled up a bottle of Champagne, and drank it.

 In 1848, Niagara Falls actually stopped flowing for 30 hours when ice fields from Lake Erie jammed at the source of the river.

Niagara Falls is the collective name for three water Falls that overlap the international borders of Canada and New York.

The first person to attempt to go over Niagara Falls in a barrel was a 63-year-old woman. Seeking fame and fortune, schoolteacher Annie Taylor loaded herself – and her cat – up in a barrel and descended over the falls in 1901. She survived. 

As a boy, Nikola Tesla saw a picture of Niagara Falls and told his uncle in Lika, Croatia, that he wanted to put a wheel under the falls to harness the power of the moving water. In 1895, Nikola Tesla designed the first hydroelectric power plant at Niagara Falls, New York which started producing electrical power.
This was the beginning of the electrification of the United States and the rest of the world.

The 3 waterfalls combine to produce the highest flow rate of any waterfall on earth.

It is illegal to go over the Niagara Falls.

On July 9, seven year old Roger Woodward went over the Horseshoe Falls wearing only a life jacket and a frown. He survived. He was picked up by the “Maid of the Mist II” tourist ship.
No word whether he was spanked.

The same thing happened to me, but nobody picked me up. I floated all the way down to Kingston.

In 2012 Nik Wallenda became the first person to cross the Niagara Falls by tightrope in 116 years. He did so after receiving permission from both the Canadian and United States governments, although he was required to carry his passport and present it on entry to the Canadian side of the falls.

We’re dining in this great restaurant at one of the most exotic locations on the planet … so what do I have? A hamburger deluxe!!, of course (With brocoli?). Nearby tables were hissing and throwing caviar at me. Then some fool tossed a Limited Edition ‘Stompin’ Tom Connors’ Bobblehead !!! – Order of Canada Edition. Yeah Baby!!

Onward … 

The Ballad of Lefty Brown / 2017

25 Jan

Based upon scant evidence, I’m going to boldly identify the rifle as

But I’m likely … wrong.

I have to tell you. I have not seen The Ballad of Lefty Brown or the previous movie that I Previewed: Sweet Country.
Why? Because these movies are poorly advertised and have limited distribution.
I never heard about them until they had come and gone. This is frustrating.
Now I have to find them – somehow.
Because they both look like good Westerns.
These are not B Movies. They are smaller – but quality productions with excellent Actors/Castgood Direction and superb cinematography.
I wanna see ’em.
And I will … somehow.

 

Sweet Country / 2017

24 Jan

Justice seen to be done …. just isn’t enough

The film is based on a real life true crime murder case where an Aboriginal man was arrested and put on trial for murdering a white man in central Australia during the 1920s.

Though the film is described as a “western”, the era of “The West” officially ends by the early 1900s or by circa 1912, and this film is set during the 1920s in 1929. As such, the film, arguably, cannot technically be classified as a “western” within the traditional historical time-frame of the era of the American West. Some historians state that this period of the American West ran for only three decades or thirty years, i.e. from 1865 to 1895, which is a period which has an even earlier end date. The ‘American Historama’ website states: “The period of the Wild West was from 1865-1895, a period of thirty years.” The Wikipedia website define the era of the “American Frontier” in two classes: Territorial Expansion (1607-1912) and Myth of the Old West (1783-1920). During the 1970s, Hollywood made a western-style western picture which was set in the middle of the 20th century, in 1945 [See: Comes a Horseman (1978)]. Most Western movies are set during the second half of the 19th century (1850-1899) with some being set in the first half of the 1800s (1800-1850).

The official Director’s Statement about the film by its director Warwick Thornton reads: “‘Sweet Country’ is a western. A period western set in Central Australia. It has all the elements of the genre – the frontier, confiscation of land, subordination and conquest of a people and epic sweeping landscapes.

MFW: Westerns do not have to be constrained to culture, time period, or country. If it feels like a Western … It’s a Western.

The Bloated Magpie …

22 Jan

I’ve recently discovered a new Species of MagpieThe Bloated Magpie (illum turgentis sanie picave).
I am filing my discovery with the appropriate authorities.

The Bloated Magpie seems to be found in only one location: our back step – by the catfood dish. They are readily recognized by their robust and rotund size (Fat) – and the smell of catfood on their breathe!

Bloated Magpies have evolved. Though ‘Bloats’ (as I call them) sometimes utter a burping sound, they are unusually quiet. Instead of the usual noxious cackling associated with the Common Magpie, they have learned the art of stealth! They are able to consume a whole dish of catfood without making a sound! The only evidence of their presence is telltale Magpie footprints around the dish. Astonishing!

Bloats also seem able to consume 3 times their normal body weight in catfood (their only known food source) which, however, renders them unable to fly. One day, as I approached the step, I witnessed a Bloat roll off the step and attempt to hide in a snowbank.

Above: Shameless Bloat attempting to hide in a snowbank!

I expect National Geographic to contact me shortly.

 

Nuthin’ to it!

Holy Mackinaw! SLAPSHOT!

21 Jan

I was just watching clips from one of my ‘Guilty Pleasure’ movies – for the hundredth time (this may not be an exaggeration):

SLAPSHOT !!! (1977)

Slapstick Hockey?
among other things. 

“Certain language may be too strong for children”

There’s a ton of stuff in this movie that is probably
too strong for most anybody. 

People probably think this movie exaggerates things.
Not much.
In the Minors, Hockey can be many things.
And ‘gentile’ is not one of them.