Happy Birthday to the wonderful Gene Kelly! ❤
(23 August 1912 – 02 February 1996)
Happy Birthday to the wonderful Gene Kelly! ❤
(23 August 1912 – 02 February 1996)
Today, let’s see this wonderful video where the amazing Gene Kelly (1912-1996) was accepting the 13th American Film Institute Life Achievement Award in 1985.
“If Fred Astaire is the Cary Grant of dance, I’m the Marlon Brando”
– Gene Kelly
Double Kelly for you tonight: Grace Kelly and Gene Kelly! Photo of 1961 ❤
Image available in: <http://explorepahistory.com/displayimage.php?imgId=1-2-78A>
Today I will join two posts in only one: the photo which I should post yesterday (and I didn’t, oops…) and the video which I chose for you in the “Video of the Day”. And there is the reason for this double post: both are about Gene Kelly, Frank Sinatra and their friendship over the years ❤
Here is a lovely photo of them and more ahead there is a quite interesting video of 1973 in which they remember their partnership in the movies, besides the fact that 30 years after dancing and singing in one of the movies mentioned (Anchors Aweigh), they really can do all of that again!! Hope you enjoy and have fun!
I know there is a long time that I don’t appear/write here… I was moving house, finishing the college, etc. But from now I promise I’ll keep the blog actualized!
Today I’m here to show you some beautiful images of Gene Kelly that I’m gathering in these last weeks. 😀
I already told here that I’m completely in love with Gene since I know him! But I think that is very hard to find good material about this incredible actor in the web, especially good photos. So I found a great fan page at Facebook about him, with amazing photos, videos, news and other things. The page is called “Gene Kelly Fans” (https://www.facebook.com/genekellyfans?fref=ts) and it’s a part of this amazing site: http://genekellyfans.com/ (there are other social media there, including Twitter and Instagram, worth it give a look!).
Now, I’ll stop to write and show some of these photos which I separated to you. I hope you enjoy! 🙂
This week I decided to write about some movies of each genre. Today, I’ll talk about the Musical ones.
Like I said before, this genre had its peak in the 40’s, when some memorable movies were produced. Between 1940 and 1941, Disney, for example, produced three big classical animations: “Fantasia” and “Pinocchio” in 1940, and “Dumbo” in 1941. Here, you can see the Pinocchio’s making of:
In 1942, was produced “Yankee Doodle Dandy”, starring James Cagney and Joan Leslie in a plot that shows the George Cohan’s story, an important artist from Broadway. Also in 1942, Fred Astaire and Rita Hayworth starred “You Were Never Lovelier”.
In 1945, was premiered “Anchors Aweigh”, starring Frank Sinatra, Gene Kelly and Kathryn Grayson. This musical is, by far, my favorite by a logical reason: there were Sinatra singing and Gene dancing! Two of my favorite artists! Also in this movie, there is the famous scene where Gene dances with the little mouse Jerry. See the trailer:
In 1948, it came out “Easter Parade”, with Fred Astaire and Judy Garland. Also in 1948, was made “The Three Musketeers”, was starring by Gene Kelly, Lara Turner and Vincent Price:
By the way, in 1949, there was another movie starring Gene Kelly and Frank Sinatra: “On The Town“. Gene directed the movie too (with another director: Stanley Donen). The movie is also starring Bette Garrett and Ann Miller. Give a look:
For conclude, I will leave you with this little video where Gene Kelly and Fred Astaire are dancing and singing together (only time that both of them appeared on screen together). This video is part of a movie called “Ziegfeld Follies“ (1946), which is divided in 12 segments and directed by several directors. This segment, called “The Babbitt And The Bromide“, was directed by Vincente Minnelli and all the choreography was made by Gene (sections one and two) and Fred Astaire (third section). Enjoy!!
The Hollywood’s golden era lasted about 20 years, between these two landmarks: the talkies’ appearance (which left the silent film in crisis) and the television’s popularization (which worried all the film industry). This period had its peak between the 40’s and 50’s, especially in this last, when the Star System was very strong in the society through the several artists whose studios used to use in its productions. This made a lot of movies reach the maximum of popularity and success.
As mentioned before, one of the main characteristics of this period in the cinema is the movies’ subdivision in genres, each one presenting a series of constant elements which show the function and characteristics of each movie. It’s also visible that, with the movies’ subdivision in genres and the Star System’s power, the artists often stayed stuck to only one genre, what created the stereotypes as for the artists as for the movies. This practice is very common until nowadays, because it creates the identification with the public and, consequently, the consumption, what makes the studios and all the film industry keep making money.
With the talkies’ appearance, all the film industry had to change, adapting itself to this innovation. So, with the possibility of using the sound, why not to use the music? Then, the Musical genre arises in the movies, with some iconic artists who keep representing this genre until today, as Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly. And, this genre had its peak in the 40’s, when some memorable movies were produced.
Another big genre stood out in this decade was the Film noir:
Movie’s style primarily associated to thrillers, which portrays their main characters in a cynical and antipathetic world. The Film noir is derivative from Big Depression epoch’s suspense novels and from 30’s horror movies’ visual style. The first Films noirs appeared in the beginning of 40’s decade. The “Noirs” were historically filmed in black-and-white and they were characterized by high contrast, with roots in the characteristic cinematography from German Expressionism. [WIKIPEDIA, online].
Also, one of the most known genres of the American movies is the Western, and especially in the classic period, this was a popular one. The golden age of this genre has like maximum exponent the job of the director John Ford, who boosted the John Wayne’s career.
Besides the movies of these genres, there were other important and famous movies in the beginning of 40’s decade like: “The Grapes of Wrath” (1940); “Citizen Kane” (1941); and “Casablanca” (1942).
Focusing on the 50’s decade this was a prosperity time for USA and the production from Hollywood because the leisure had become an important part in the American life and the cinema was an essential part in this leisure. According to Wasson (2011): “It was the 50’s and the United States apparently on vacation. […] In these postwar years, the industry of the anxiety’s relief peaked unprecedented, increasing more over the decade”. (WASSON, 2011, p. 39).
In this period, as in the 40’s, it was produced unforgettable Musical movies, some Films noirs and also some Westerns…
On the other hand, it was another genre that stood out in the 50’s decade: the Comedy, more specifically, the Romantic comedy. And, if in the 40’s decade, the actors who dominated the movie screens, in the 50’s, the actresses who commanded. It was in this decade that stood out a phenomenon called Marilyn Monroe, who is the first actress remembered by a lot of people when it is asked something about the 50’s movies. However, as mentioned before, in the classic period of American cinema, especially in the 50’s decade, there was an extreme dialectic to women. So, in the contrary side of Marilyn Monroe, appeared Audrey Hepburn, in movies where she acted in more behaved roles.
Another recurrent genre of the 50’s is the Drama, sometimes involving a Romance, others involving a War, but always with the drama as background.
The 50’s also was the career’s decade of two actors: Grace Kelly and James Dean.
Grace Kelly – Monaco’s Princess – considered the 13th legend of world cinema according to American Film Institute, starred 11 movies between 1951 and 1956 and received 10 nominations for the main awards in the film industry, which won 06 times. James Dean, considered a cultural icon, representing the youth of the 50’s decade. He acted in 07 movies (where in 04 of them, Dean wasn’t credited), also between 1951 and 1956. He received 02 posthumous nominations for Academy Awards (1956 / 1957).
– In the next posts I’ll
talk write more specifically about some movies of this golden period. See you soon!
CINEMA western. Wikipedia. Available in: <http://pt.wikipedia.org/wiki/Western>. Access in: 2014, May 25th.
FILM noir. Wikipedia. Available in: <http://pt.wikipedia.org/wiki/Film_noir>. Access in: 2014, May 25th.
GRACE Kelly. Wikipedia. Available in: <http://pt.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grace_Kelly>. Access in: 2014, May 25th.
JAMES Dean. Wikipedia. Available in: <http://pt.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Dean>. Access in: 2014, May 25th.
STUDIO System / Star System / Gêneros [Genres]. Slideshare. 2009. Available in: <http://pt.slideshare.net/guestcda059/studio-system-star-system-gneros>. Access in: 2014, May 25th.
WASSON, Sam. Quinta Avenida, 5 da manhã: Audrey Hepburn, Bonequinha de luxo e o surgimento da mulher moderna [Fifth Avenue, 5 A.M.: Audrey Hepburn, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, and the dawn of the modern woman]. Translated by José Rubens Siqueira. Rio de Janeiro: Zahar, 2011. Cap. 01.