Sunday, July 3, 2011

In the Good Old Summertime: Week 1


This is week one of Lizzy's blog party! She's giving away a DVD copy of Casablanca and a necklace. Go here to check it out. And here are my answers to this week's questions:

What's your favorite "old movie" of all time (anything before 1970s)?

I have a tendency to divide classic movies into musicals and non-musicals. favorite musical (and the best musical ever, in my opinion) is Singin' in the Rain. It has an interesting plot and a great cast. It's smart, hilarious, and beautiful. And it has two aspects that are rare among even the best musicals: the songs fit in with the plot and all of the songs are awesome (except for maybe Moses Supposes. That song is sort of the thorn in my side in an otherwise perfect movie :). The title dance is one of the best movie moments ever.

My favorite non-musical classic movie is Casablanca. It's got a great setting, suspense, the best "theme song," Bogie, Bergman, and a great what's easy vs. what's right moral.

These are the first two "old" movies that I consciously chose to watch (that means other than ones that I caught in passing or on TV, like The Sound of Music) and the two that began my classic movie obsession several years ago. Not to mention they're both real classics- not only beloved by tons of people but also just really well-made films.

So when someone asks me what my favorite old movie is, these two are my answer. But I have many more favorites now, including Roman Holiday, Sabrina, The Thin Man, It Happened One Night, The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer, Arsenic and Old Lace, The Parent Trap, How to Steal a Million, and a lot more movies, most of which are listed here. :)

Who is your favorite b&w actor?

Once again, I'll divide up into a musical and non-musical. :) My favorite non-musical b&w actor is Cary Grant. He's pretty much the coolest guy ever. Like he said, "Everybody wants to be Cary Grant. Even I want to be Cary Grant." But did you know that Cary Grant's real name was Archibald Leach? Pretty awesome, right? :) Anyway, he was hilarious, charming, and super handsome, especially in black and white. It took forever for me to get used to the super-tan that he sports in Technicolor, but now I hardly notice it. {Also, his promo shots are always so serious! So I chose this one, which I like because he has sort of a bewildered look on his face.}

Favorite musical b&w actor is Gene Kelly. He is so likable, optimistic, and charismatic on screen. He could act and sing, and he was the best dancer ever (sorry, Mr. Astaire. I really do like you, too). When I watch him dance, I get a goofy grin on my face because he looks like he's having a ridiculous amount of fun and it makes me happy, too. It's obvious that he's loving what he's doing.

Who is your favorite b&w actress?

Musical: Judy Garland. I love her speaking and singing voice. Have you ever heard this girl sing when she was like 12 or 13? She sang just as good as she did when she was an adult. And she's definitely got the whole "girl next door" personality going for her. She was especially amazing with Mickey Rooney and in the 40s.

Non-musical: Audrey Hepburn. What can you say about Audrey that hasn't already been said? Besides how incredibly talented she was, she also seemed to be a truly kind and amazing person. And as a klutz, I'm amazed by her elegance and grace- I've never seen her clumsy in a film. Even if she tries to be, she's still graceful.

Why do you love vintage/shabby-chic?

I'm not sure whether this question is referring to vintage clothes and style, or vintage things in general...I've always loved history and old things (I think this started because I used to read a lot of historical fiction {still do} and American Girl books!). Then when I was 10 or 11, I got really into Elvis, which led to a love of the 50s and classic TV. I started watching old movies, and suddenly everything clicked. I was born in the wrong era! Just kidding. :) Sometimes I do feel that way, though, because everything about me is old-fashioned and I feel like I would have settled in perfectly to living decades ago. I guess when it comes down to it, my beliefs, values, and tastes are more similar to those of the 40s and 50s than those of the world now. I like a slower, enjoyable lifestyle with black and white movies and big band records, with ladies who dress and act like ladies and guys who are chivalrous gentlemen.

So what started with American Girl and Elvis led to a love of classic movies and TV, old music, antiques, and pretty much anything else vintage. Including vintage clothing styles, which unfortunately I'm not brave enough to dress in like I'd like to. :)

What's your favorite era? (1920s, WWII, etc.)

Probably the 1940s. But I love the 1920s through the 1960s, and I like seeing how each decade was similar to or different from the others. :)

Until next time,


  1. I love singin' In The Rain! And Audrey Hepburn.:) And Judy Garland.;)

  2. can't even DESCRIBE how much i adored this post!!!!!!!!!!! i am a classic movie NUT! <3

  3. Tina Sinatra's memoir was pretty good!:) It wasn't only about her, it was also about her father, from her point of view. It was well written and though it did sport a few cuss words, overall it was an interesting look in to Frank Sinatra's life through his youngest daughters eyes.:)

  4. I haven't watched many old movies, per se, but I do love me some good old-fashioned musicals, like the Sound of Music & West Side Story. Also, the Parent Trap is my favorite. We go way back, hah. Great post! :)

  5. I've never seen Singin' in the Rain, but it is at the top of my 'Movies to Watch' list...especially now after reading your description of it. Yes, yes.

    Ah, Cary Grant. *emits a sigh that speaks volumes* Love that guy. 'Nuff said. ;)

    I really enjoyed this post--you have a lovely blog! Thanks so much for stopping by mine and for the sweet comment!


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