Posts tagged ‘Jean Harlow’
I spent the majority of today in 1932.
Well, as close as I’ll ever get to it, anyway.
On this exceptionally bright, magical March afternoon, the not-so-distant past collided head on with the present.
The authors of Harlow in Hollywood: The Blonde Bombshell in the Glamour Capital held a book signing on Club View Drive in Beverly Hills- the former residence of Jean Harlow. The gracious current owners of the home, Mr. and Mrs. Chandler, hosted a lovely afternoon luncheon whose guests included Leonard Maltin, Holly Madison, members of the Harlow family (the Carpenter side), veteran Hollywood actress Pauline Wagner (Fay Wray‘s King Kong double!) and Hollywood historians Lisa Burks, Darrell Rooney and Mark Vieira. Read more ►
It is my considered opinion that no one can pout like Harlow.
That power pout of hers is the reason, strange but true, that I first paid any attention to her at all. I was watching Red Headed Woman one lazy Saturday afternoon, and somewhere in the middle came a foot stomp…followed up with that delicious ‘Don’t Mess With Me’ pout… and I just had to do a double take.
I still don’t know precisely why it wallops me, but it does. She’s both a toddler in a fit, a clawing goddess, and a vulnerable young woman. That’s not acting. That’s Harlean Carpenter in the flesh, raw and real and thoroughly electrifying.
You can try to mimick it, but you can never ever come close to it. That emotive pout– the reason my eyebrow raised that Saturday afternoon and I sat straight and took note.
My favorite Harlow Power Pout: the entire 7 minutes of this Red Headed Woman clip. The word you’re looking for, ladies and gents, is usually preceded by the word ‘holy’ and followed by something with an ‘f’…
Day Five of the Jean Harlow Blogathon
Here we are already on Day 5 of the Jean Harlow Blogathon, and judging by today’s entries there’s no sign of slowing down! You guys are on fire!
Lots of goodies to choose from today, from a highly intelligent social essay to a gallery of glamorous stills, there’s a little bit of everything for everyone in today’s roundup.
A Shroud of Thoughts
“She proved a formidable comedy talent in the Anita Loos comedy The Gril From Missouri (1934). A few years later in Wife vs. Secretary she proved a match even for Myrna Loy when it came to comedy. That her talent for comedy must have been inborn can be seen in her many, often funny quotes, some of them worthy of even Mae West.
Marathon Blogathon Blogger Lisa at The Platinum Page has posted Twinkle, Twinkle, Star of the month, her 5th entry for the Blogathon. It’s a nice rundown of TCM’s March schedule for Jean’s films and I especially like that she highlighted Robert Osborne’s lovely thoughts on Harlow:
Costars and friends such as Myrna Loy and Rosalind Russell certainly thought so. They were among those who, three decades after Harlow’s death, were so insulted by a salacious book about their long gone friend that each went on numerous television talk shows with fire in her eyes to repudiate the author’s words and defend Harlow’s reputation.
It takes an extraordinary person to inspire that kind of devotion. It’s that lively lady we think you’ll thoroughly enjoy spending time with Tuesdays in March on TCM, beginning March 8.
Kevin at Clarosureaux has yet another batch of beautifully colorized images of Harlow that really is terrific eye candy—including the gorgeous photo of featured above.
Comets Over Hollywood
Frankly, the plot is predictable and typical of a Clark Gable movie. I personally think it was only saved by Jean Harlow’s comedic wit and beauty. Jean Arthur would have been terrible in the role and Virginia Bruce would have been just as predictable. The film would have fallen flat.
But at the same time, I almost wish the film had been shelved, much like Marilyn Monroe’s unfinished movie “Something’s Got to Give” (Though the difference is “Saratoga” nearly done and Monroe’s movie just starting). I’m not saying that I’m not thankful to see one last glimpse of Jean alive and well, but it’s heart breaking to watch. You see her at the beginning of the movie very beautiful and very much alive. It’s like watching someone on the street, knowing they are about to die, but they have no clue…
Via Margutta 51
Ariel at Sinamatic Salve-Ation returns in top form with “The Rich Dividends of Sin: Women and Hollywood in the ‘30s. Folks, this post is essential reading. An extremely well written essay on sex, censorship and how women like Harlow, Mae West and Ruth Chatterton challenged the system:
Pre-Code films have recently become a popular area of research, over the last few years. There have been several books and even some documentaries made about the existence of, and circumstances surrounding them. This “unearthing” of these documents is integral to our appreciation of the rest of film history, but most importantly the image of women in film history. In regards to his work on the subject, and his book, Mick LaSalle said that he believes that “the real audience for this subject is young women… Young women are amazed by these films because it reassures them that they’re not some kind of a modern-day anomaly.” It’s nice to have that reassurance.
Shadowplay is a cineaste playground and it rounds out today’s digest with “Punchy” — a spotlight of a Harlow rarity, Tod Browning’s Iron Man, and a Laurel and Hardy short, Bacon Grabbers. Shadowplay is a Pictorial favorite, with its content seamlessly skirting from austere to eccentric to classic and back again with almost dizzying dexterity. The film didn’t dazzle, but makes for a good read:
Browning did like his talk pretty ssslllooowwww (but his last movie, MIRACLES FOR SALE, is unexpectedly zippy), but here the sheer lack of interest in the situations seems to seep through everything and everyone.
But those furs are pretty impressive.
Harlow at 100: Day Four of the Jean Harlow Blogathon!
Today is the day, folks!
The hundredth birthday of one cinema’s finest comediennes and a genuinely warm, kind-hearted lady. We are halfway through the Blogathon and you guys are really showing the love. Is today’s lineup ever a lulu! Birthday tributes to the baby are pouring in from all over the globe, it’s truly thrilling!
So many posts to get to, so without further ado:
TCM’s Movie News is not an official Blogathon partner, but did plug this lovely mention of the new Harlow exhibit at the Hollywood Max Factor Museum.
Jennifer’s Silent Stanzas chimes in today with “For Harlean” – a beautiful poem for Harlow on her 100th.
Thrilling Days of Yesteryear
Ivan at Thrilling Days of Yesteryear decided to take a look at Harlow’s work in silent’s with comedy legends Laurel and Hardy. (Ivan’s sister shares Harlow’s birthday so it’s a double treat for him.)
Brandie at True Classics has favored the 1936 screball comedy Libeled Lady with “She May Be His Wife But She’s Engaged to Me!” It’s The Pictorial’s absolute favorite Harlow film and Brandie definitely does it justice.
Tara Hanks’ “American Bombshells: Marilyn and Jean Harlow” makes a great assessment of the careers of both bombshells. As Clara Bow, the first ‘It Girl’, said after Monroe’s death, ‘A sex symbol is a heavy load to carry, especially when one is tired, hurt and bewildered.’
From France we have David Benard with a very beautifully presented post for the Harlow’s centenary. (Joyeux Anniversaire, Baby!)
I’ll Take the Snap Out of Your Garters!
Another newcomer, I’ll Take the Snap Out of Your Garters, (how brilliant of a blog title is that?!?) enters the blogathon today with a fitting tribute.
Silence is Platinum
Jessica at Silence is Platinum offers a very personal account of what makes Harlow so special.
Kevin at Clarosureaux is back today, this time taking on the Harlow classic Bombshell (Hollywood historians take special note of his post– he needs your help!)
Carole & Co.
Vincent from Carole & Co. returns with a tribute to Harlow – even bestowing his Lombard avatar with Harlow’s image for the occasion! (Awww, thanks Vincent!)
Edward Copeland on Film
One of the more comprehensive entries to date is Josh’s “Centennial Tribute” to Jean over at Edward Copeland on Film.
11 East 14th Street
Of equal depth is Gene from 11 East 14th Street with “My Search for Jean Harlow”—a fascinating in depth look into the woman who became the legend.
Noir and Chick Flicks
(Apologies if I missed anyone on today’s update– you will absolutely make it for tomorrow’s edition!)
Day Three of the Jean Harlow Blogathon!
Day three of the Blogathon is here and Jean’s 100th is one day away!
Tomorrow the Pictorial will be celebrating in high style, along with countless fans around the world, to commemorate the life of this unforgettable legend. Things are kicking into high gear around here, and if I haven’t replied to any requests to participate: I WILL! So keep those posts coming!
Ann Dvorak: Hollywood’s Forgotten Rebel
Christina runs Ann Dvorak: Hollywood’s Forgotten Rebel which is a real labor of love, dedicated to a neglected Hollywood actress. She’s joined the Blogathon with “Harlow & Dvorak at 100: An Appreciation,” and compares the difference between two women’s careers:
At first glance it seems that Jean Harlow and Ann Dvorak were worlds apart. Harlow was the wise-cracking platinum blonde who was able to use overt sexuality as a comedic weapon. Dvorak was the brooding brunette whose high-wire intensity played out best in dramatic form. Harlow landed at M-G-M, a studio who carefully crafted an on screen persona that film fans loved and sent her skyrocketing to the top of the box-office. Dvorak was at Warner Bros., a studio focused more on making movies than movie stars and who let Ann languish in mostly supporting roles unworthy of her talent …
Mark at Freewheelin Pilgrim has penned a love letter to a screen goddess. “The Boy Who Loved the Bombshell” is a sweet, sentimental and honest account of just why this 21st Century young’un just can’t get enough of an early 20th Century actress:
Jean Harlow is my celebrity crush. Sounds a bit strange doesn’t it? I mean, I’m 20 years old and she’s been dead for nearly 74 years. But it’s true. Whenever my friends sit around discussing who is “the hottest actress”, I always say “Jean Harlow”. This, naturally, gets a chorus of “huh?”s and “who’s she?”s. I simply tell them to look her up
My love for “Baby Jean” (my nickname for her) began at the tender age of 16. I was in Big W (a department store like K-Mart) for their quarterly DVD sale. I had my eyes set on the “Warner Brothers Gangster” DVDs I’d seen in the catalogue and, thankfully, I managed to get all 6. So I went home and put The Public Enemy on…
Evangeline Holland joins the Blogathon today with “The Platinum Blonde Goes Red.” In it she tackles the topic of the highly risky decision by MGM to cast the most famous blonde in movies as a red-head….
Jean was under contract to Howard Hughes at the time and his publicity director, Lincoln Quarberg, ran with the new phrase by organizing 3,000 Platinum Blonde Clubs and offering $10,000 to anyone who could replicate the “secret” forumla used to keep Miss Harlow’s hair its celebrated shade. Quarberg planted stories in the popular movie magazines to feed the fictional origins of Jean’s hair, claiming her luminous white tresses were the result of an accident at the beauty parlor…
Quickly becoming a favorite around here, Harlean’s Heyday is back today with a second installment in a series discussing they style that made Harlow a fashion icon. “Harlow’s Casual Style” is a treat because it undresses the image to uncover the real girl beneath it all:
Jean’s casual looks are quite a departure from the dramatic, curve hugging bias-cut gowns that largely mark her formal and on-screen style. It is actually her everyday style that I personally find the most inspiring.
In her own home you’d most frequently find a make-up free Jean Harlow wearing a pair of shorts, a polo shirt and tennis shoes. She didn’t wear stockings, not even during the winter months. Jean was an athletic lady, who played golf and tennis, rode horses and enjoyed swimming. Her flair for sports is certainly evident in her casual style….
Lisa Burks, the grand dame of Harlow blogging is back today with a great plug for the new Jean Harlow exhibit at The Max Factor Museum in Hollywood, which finally opens tomorrow:
The new Jean Harlow Exhibit, guest curated by Darrell Rooney, opens this Thursday (Jean’s 100th Birthday) at The Hollywood Museum in the Historic Max Factor Building. Back in the day, long before it was even a make-up museum, Jean often visited this building to be treated by Mr. Factor himself when it was his salon.
A highly literary entry comes from Ariel at Sinamatic Salve-Ation and the Blogathon is very proud to present it to you readers. “Jean Harlow and the Magnetic Fields Get Lost” takes its inspiration from a modern rock album and effectively paints Harlow’s portrait in what is a most beautiful piece:
This is my first blog for the Jean Harlow blogathon, which is being done to celebrate what would have been her 100th birthday (March 3rd). In a way, I felt compelled to write for this because Harlean Harlow Carpenter née Jean Harlow was only 26 years old when she died. She deserves a little more recognition. We all know about Marilyn, but without the original Platinum Blonde, Ms. Monroe wouldn’t’ve had a high heel to stand on…
Via Margutta 51
We’re so pleased to Via Margutta along for the Blogathon! Clara’s blog is a thorough delight as is her entry for the Blogathon: “Red-Headed Woman Meets Twitter.” You read that right, and you gotta see this—it’s just a real kick and the icing on the cake for a day of stellar Harlow blogging!
My favorite tweet so far in the Lil Andrews/Bill Legendre affair: