1940s


Marlene Dietrich’s Re-Education of American Female Sensuality

This post was originally written for my MA Film and Literature course “Cold War Culture: Literature, Film, Theory in Cold War Europe” at the University of York (lecturer Dr. Erica Sheen).  The most poignant line Marlene Dietrich has in A Foreign Affair is when she asks her American army officer lover, […]


Musical Patriotism and Nostalgia in CASABLANCA (1942)

The other day on Groupon they featured an offer to see the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra play along with CASABLANCA (1942) and I sincerely regret not jumping at this chance to give myself the best Valentine’s Day gift imaginable! As we know, CASABLANCA is on every top 100 movie list out […]


10 Things to Love about WITHOUT LOVE (1945)

Harold S. Buquet’s WITHOUT LOVE (1945) is without doubt one of Katharine Hepburn’s most underrated films. She plays a Jamie Rowan, a scientist’s daughter who rents out part of her Washington DC home to a Pat Jamieson (Spencer Tracy), a scientist who cannot find anywhere to live and work due to the […]


Poll: Great Adaptations of LITTLE WOMEN

A previous post on this blog mentions the various “Great Adaptations” of films based on novels Turner Classic Movies will be featuring this month. Possibly the most quintessential American novel, Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, has also been made into a number of popular films, two of which will be […]


Gary Cooper: BALL OF FIRE (1941)

This post is written in conjunction with the Summer Under the Stars Blogathon hosted by Sittin’ on a Backyard Fence and ScribeHard on Film. A full day of Gary Cooper films will air on TCM on August 26. BALL OF FIRE will be showing at 8:00 pm EST. During college, my friend Cookie and I bonded over Gary Cooper […]


Hepburn and the Anti-HUAC Brigade

Hollywood A-Listers, heading by Humphrey Bogart and his  wife Lauren Bacall head to Washington to protest the HUAC Hollywood report. On 8 June, 1949, the House Un-American Activities Committee published a report labeling more than 300 film industry individuals Communists. Aurora of The Cinementals writes about it in her recent post.


Nazi Anti-Semitic Propaganda Filmmaking: Veit Harlan and JUD SUSS (1940)

Veit Harlan and Kristina Soderbaum At our weekly village movie night this week we watched a documentary called Harlan: In the Shadow of “Jew Suss” about Third Reich propaganda filmmaker, Veit Harlan, whose controversial film inspired a nation to persecute and murder all Jews. I had not heard of Veit Herlan before […]