Preview The Lots for Debbie Reynolds' 2nd Auction

Preview the lots for Debbie Reynolds' 2nd Auction at the auction house or online here:

465 North Beverly Drive
Beverly Hills, CA 90210
Live Auction
Saturday December 3, 2011at 11:00 AM PST

Public Preview Dates
12:00 - 5:00 pm PST
November 17 through November 23
November 25 through November 27
November 30 and December 2

Download the Catalog by clicking here.

A Slob Recants

I owe Margie Frake an apology. She flounces around the state fair in those impractical (but totally gorgeous) heels and skirts and I laugh myself silly. "No one in the '40s ever went to the fair like that," I chuckle haughtily from an overstuffed couch, rubbing Cheetos cheese onto my equally crammed and faded Levi's. "They'd pal around in their overalls or Converse shoes. They'd look more like Dennis the Menace than Lana Turner."

For that reason I never thought of this film as anything but a fashion show. Sure people dressed up back then, but at a fair? Will the champion hogs appreciate your crimson velvet bodice and matching hat?  Will the mincemeat judge award you the blue ribbon because you're wearing one around your waist? Surely not. This movie has never been real to me.

And then I saw this...

People -non-actors- in heels and suits on a Rotor in what seems to be the late 1940s. Wow! Who says you can't look good and have fun at the fair? I never will again.

(But seriously, how comfortable are those shoes when you're walking around for that long?)

Doris Day-Rock Hudson Inspired Music Video

Nestled among the end credits of Down With Love (2002) - that spoof of Doris Day and Rock Hudson movies - is a TV segment where Renee Zellweger's and Ewan McGregor's characters sing about love and dance around. It's almost right out of The Ed Sullivan Show.

Here is "Here's To Love" :

I could smell the sweat! West Side Story (1961) on the Big Screen

What a night! My first time watching a classic movie on the silver screen!

Turner Classic Movies presented West Side Story(1961) in movie theaters all over the country last Wednesday to celebrate the 50th anniversary of this Academy Award-winning retelling of Romeo and Juliet. Everything that is great when viewing it at home is even better on the big screen! Why? The details! The details that I never noticed before are now inescapable.

The big screen makes you very much aware of the grit and grime of the story.
  • Tony has a ring around his collar during the "Something's Coming" number. A gangster gone straight, he's a working man now with the sweat to prove it. Good for him. 
  • What I thought was a beige tile floor in the Sharks' tenement is actually a white tile floor with smudges.
  • Dear Graziella, your beautiful burnt orange dress has armpit stains. I wish I could unsee them.
  • A copy of Trumbull's Declaration of Independence is so dingy that you barely notice it amongst the filth on the wall during the war council scene.
  • When Action points his grimy finger at the camera, "pulls the trigger" and  yells "pow!," what seems hokey on TV becomes menacing when the little guy with the jazz hands is 30 feet tall.
  • Tony, Riff, Bernardo, Chino, all of you! How much Brylcreme does a guy need?  You look greasy.
Little details - like how the gangs showcase their solidarity in their clothing- are easier to catch in the theater. 
  • The archer bands on the Sharks' wrists are a dramatic statement even on the small screen. But note that when we first meet the rival gang that many of the Jets wear their belt buckles on the side.
  • Throughout the film, the Sharks can be found in reds and purples. Dominant colors for the Jets  are gold and yellow. You'd notice the colors in whatever format the movie is in, but on the silver screen you notice sumptuous details in the fabrics! Tony is not just wearing a yellow jacket at the dance, he's wearing a velvet goldenrod sports coat.  Maria is not just wearing a white dress (which symbolizes her lack of involvement in gang life); it has little white curlicues embroidered throughout which add to the child-like quality of the outfit and to the innocence of the character.
  • The color schemes come in handy when Maria and Tony profess their undying commitment to each other. We know they are serious, not just because of the stellar acting, lighting and music, but because the costume designer, Irene Sharaff ,dresses the couple in their rival's color. In the "wedding" scene, Maria wears a pale yellow dress - the Jets hue. Tony wears Maria's "family color" close to his heart - an aubergine lining in his varsity jacket (something I wouldn't have noticed except on the big screen). The former leader of the Jets is becoming a Shark from the inside out! Also note that the banded collar is pulled back slightly like a lapel, revealing a slight floral pattern; it is as though he is wearing a buttonhole at the "wedding".
    Adhering to family colors........................................................... Beginning to switch colors and allegiances
    An observation from my mom:
    • "I don't remember the colors being so bright! Is our copy in black and white?"
      What with fast forwarding to my favorites parts at home and not having seen the entire thing in one viewing in a long time, I'd forgotten how detached from reality these characters are. For instance, if some dude that I'm engaged to kills my brother, the wedding's off. Murder would be a deal breaker for me. But it isn't for Maria, who plows through several stages of grief within the course of 5 minutes and finishes a make out session with Tony just before a policeman shows up. Ah, the movies!

      That's my red carpet experience. What is yours? Did you go?

      Judy Garland Mesmerizes Us Again In Song

      Judy Garland sings "The Man That Got Away" on her eponymous television show in 1963. Brilliant.

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