31 December 2008

до свидания, 2008

I, for one, won't miss this crappy year one single bit. It will live on in my memory as the year that nothing--not one single God-forsaken thing--went right. Happy New Year, all. And may 2009 be better than its predecessor.

23 December 2008

It's That Man Again

Pimping ain't easy, but somebody's gotta do it. And I can think of very few people who are better suited to the job than Eddie Cantor.

Point of interest: the blonde at Eddie's right smiling impishly at the camera is, I believe, a very young (and probably not very legal) Betty Grable. Personally I think she looks much better here than with the bad 40s hair she had when she became famous, but that's just me.

19 December 2008

Season's Greetings

Here's a friendly Christmas Carol from the good folks over at the Westboro Baptist Church. At this point, these people aren't even offensive any more; in all honesty, they're starting to seem like a caricature of themselves. Do they honestly expect me to believe that Santa Claus (who nobody over the age of ten believes is real) will rape children? On the other hand, they are right about the Christmas Tree being a pagan idol, so I suppose nothing is impossible.

17 December 2008

Eastern Europe, Circa 1943

This is some strange fellow's highly romanticized vision of the Eastern Front.

13 December 2008

The BCS Top 20

This, you will find, is slightly different from the regular BCS poll. There's a meme going around the Classic Film regions of the blogosphere wherein bloggers list their twenty favorite actresses. My BCS ballot will no doubt share a lot of names with the ballots of other bloggers, but I should hope that there will be a few lesser-knowns showing up. I also threw in a few extra tidbits of information (just to make things interesting).

1. Joan Crawford
Favorite Metal band: Iron Maiden
Drink of choice: Double vodka and Cherry Coke
Deepest, darkest secret: Actually doesn't mind wire hangers all that much.

2. Dorothy Sebastian
Favorite Metal band: Judas Priest
Drink of Choice: Jaeger Bombs. Lots of them.
Deepest, darkest secret: Likes to burn things (because the leprechaun tells her to).

3. Bebe Daniels
Favorite Metal band: Black Sabbath
Drink of Choice: Thunderbird
Deepest, darkest secret: Funneled profits from 42nd Street to the IRA.

4. Norma Shearer
Favorite Metal band: Burzum
Drink of choice: Appletini
Deepest, darkest secret: Has been using the same toothbrush for a year and a half.

5. Louise Brooks
Favorite Metal band: Gorgoroth
Drink of choice: Crunk Juice
Deepest, darkest secret: Likes to kick puppies. And kittens.

6. Anita Page
Favorite Metal band: Slayer
Drink of choice: Irish car bomb
Deepest, darkest secret: Is a level 60 Paladin in World of Warcraft.

7. Myrna Loy
Favorite Metal band: Manowar
Drink of choice: Whiskey Boilermaker
Deepest, darkest secret: Accidentally shot herself in the leg in a New York nightclub. She didn't have a permit for her gun, either.

8. Marion Davies
Favorite Metal band: Sleep
Drink of choice: Steel Reserve 211
Deepest, darkest secret: Once tried to hotbox the basement of San Simeon.

9. Constance Bennett
Favorite Metal band: Metallica
Drink of choice: Jack Daniel's
Deepest, darkest secret: Likes to tell orphans that Santa Claus was going to bring them presents but crashed and died on the way.

10. Barbara Stanwyck
Favorite Metal band: Iced Earth
Drink of choice: Southern Comfort
Deepest, darkest secret: Killed JFK and framed Lee Harvey Oswald.

11. Bessie Love
Favorite Metal band: Deicide
Drink of choice: Goldschlager
Deepest, darkest secret: Fixed the 1919 World Series.

12. Fay Wray
Favorite Metal band: Darkthrone
Drink of choice: Monarch Rum
Deepest, darkest secret: Regularly posts on 4chan.

13. Billie Dove
Favorite Metal band: Napalm Death
Drink of choice: Bloody Mary
Deepest, darkest secret: Doesn't rewind her videos when she takes them back to store.

14. Kay Francis
Favorite Metal band: Cannibal Corpse
Drink of choice: Night Train
Deepest, darkest secret: Owns every one of the Saw films on DVD.

15. Joan Blondell
Favorite Metal band: Mayhem
Drink of choice: White Russian
Deepest, darkest secret: Remember Chernobyl? Yeah, that was her.

16. Irene Dunne
Favorite Metal band: Dragonforce
Drink of choice: Peppermint Schnapps
Deepest, darkest secret: Is plotting to kidnap Bear Grylls and keep him in a pit in her basement. "It puts the lotion on its skin..."

17. Jean Arthur
Favorite Metal band: Belphegor
Drink of choice: Stroh, Stroh, and more Stroh
Deepest, darkest secret: Performs in an underground Hip-hop act under the pseudonym "J-Money".

18. Evelyn Brent
Favorite Metal band: Sunn O)))
Drink of choice: Cognac brandy and Robitussin
Deepest, darkest secret: Thinks Terrell Owens is actually an okay guy.

19. Pauline Starke
Favorite Metal band: Pig Destroyer
Drink of choice: The Bloody Aztec
Deepest, darkest secret: Killed Thelma Todd. While dressed as the Easter Bunny.

20. Olive Borden
Favorite Metal band: Candlemass
Drink of choice: The Black Cossack
Deepest, darkest secret: Buys entire boxes of Lucky Charms but only eats the marshmallows (the regular cereal she just throws at random strangers whilst screaming "Where is your God now!?").

This took forever to do. The pictures are from all over creation, but if it's any consolation to you, I used my own space for them.

12 December 2008

Finding his Voice (1929)

Here's a somewhat obscure (but still quite interesting) animated short from 1929. Finding his Voice is the saga of Talkie and Mutie, a pair of anthropomorphous rolls of film. As you might have guessed from their names, Talkie is a talking picture, and Mutie is a silent picture. Mutie wants to know how Talkie got his voice. Talkie explains that a certain Dr. Western (who is, by the by, a thinly-veiled metaphor for Western Electric, who commissioned the film) gave him his voice, and takes Mutie to see the good doctor.

Finding his Voice is interesting for several reasons. First and foremost, it offers the viewer a glance into the technical niceties of the Western Electric sound-on-film process, which was widely used by the Fox Films Corporation in the late 20s and 30s (mind you that this is long before Rupert Murdoch took over and Fox became the mouthpiece of the Antichrist). The sound-on-film process, by the look of it, was downright Byzantine in its intricacy and obsolescence, and--from what I understand--allowed for a somewhat inferior sound quality to the Vitaphone process used by Warner Brothers (it is ironic that the sound in Finding his Voice was apparently recorded via the Vitaphone process).

From a less technical perspective, Finding his Voice also merits attention by virtue of its being one of Max Fleischer's earliest post-Disney efforts, antedating Betty Boop even in her earliest, canine form by about a year or so.

One final detail--the tune which plays at the beginning of the film is, appropriately enough, "Ever Since the Movies Learned to Talk". A bit more information about the song (and even a recording of the song itself!) can be found at Vitaphone Varieties.

10 December 2008

Instant Pathos

I know many who would be moved to tears by this.

05 December 2008

A Skateboarding Parakeet

I seem to be at a loss for interesting things to say at the moment (some would say I've been at a loss for interesting things to say for a little more than a year or so). Here's some mind numbing cuteness to fill the void. ...I like parakeets.