Year in Film: 1942

Blondie For Victory

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Blondie’s Blessed Event, released in 1942 as the 11th film in the Blondie series, was the first to make passing reference to America’s then recent involvement in World War II. The end of the film, like so many others in the series, finds Dagwood fired from the J.C. Dithers Construction Company. A representative of the […]


Blondie Goes to College

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By the time of the 10th film in the Blondie series, the producers must have been scratching their heads and trying to think of situations they had not covered yet. Someone had the idea of sending Blondie and Dagwood to college (the first time for both) and off the went. When his parents go off […]


Blondie’s Blessed Event

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At the end of Blondie Goes to College, the 10th installment of the Blondie series, the title character reveals that she is expecting a child, setting up the premise of the next film. At the opening of the 11th film, Blondie is expecting her second baby any minute. Due to the Hays Production code, the […]


Counter-Espionage

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Counter-Espionage is yet another movie I have watched without knowing anything whatsoever about it before hand. This one was chosen purely by its year of release, 70 years ago. I had no idea that this was only one film in a series of films with Warren William playing the detective “the Lone Wolf” or that […]


Mrs. Miniver

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I spent the afternoon of the last day of 2012 the same way I spent the afternoon of the last day of 2011: watching a classic film at a theater in Tokyo that specializes in screening classic films. Last year it was the Astaire-Rogers lighthearted romp The Gay Divorcee. This year it was a rather more […]


Once Upon a Honeymoon

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This is an entertaining, but rather odd film. Released in 1942, the same year as Casablanca, this is also the story of a woman torn between two men, with the love triangle set against the backdrop of the concentration camps of World War II. But unlike Casablanca, this Leo McCarey-directed film is full of light […]


The Magnificent Ambersons

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The general consensus about Orson Welles’ second film is that while Citizen Kane is about 1,000 times better, The Magnificent Ambersons is still a great masterpiece, and is among the best films ever made. I’m not so sure. If I had to choose Welles’ second best film, I would probably say it is The Stranger. […]


This Gun for Hire

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I had never seen an Alan Ladd film except for the Bob Hope comedy My Favorite Brunette (1947), in which he plays a small cameo for laughs. So his-career making role in This Gun For Hire came as something of a shock for me, as it most of for the American film-viewing public in 1942. […]


To Be or Not to Be

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As a self-professed fanatic of American films from the 1940s, it is embarrassing to admit that I have never seen the original of To Be or Not to Be, although I have seen the 1983 Mel Brooks remake several times. The fact that the DVD of the Ernest Lubitsch film has been out of print […]


Random Quote

“You play fair with me, I'll play fair with you.”
-Alex Forrest (Glenn Close)
from Fatal Attraction