In this family saga, Mrs. Parkington recounts the story of her life, beginning as a hotel maid in frontier Nevada where she is swept off her feet by mine owner and financier Augustus Parkington. He moves them to New York, tries to remake her into a society woman, and establishes their home among the wealthiest of New York’s high society. Family and social life is not always peaceful, however, and she guides us, in flashbacks, through the rises and falls of the Parkington family fortunes.
Tag Archives: 1940s
María Candelaria (Xochimilco) / Portrait of Maria (1944) Emilio Fernández, Dolores del Rio, Pedro Armendáriz, Alberto Galán, Romance, Drama
In Xochimilco 1909, María Candelaria and Lorenzo Rafael long for getting married but the odds are against them. Maria Candelaria is segregated for being a prostitute’s child and the couple faces the greed of Mr. Damian, the town’s shop owner who secretly desires Maria. When Maria falls sick with Malaria, Lorenzo Rafael steals a quinine bottle from Damian’s shop, unleashing tragedy for the lovers.
Clint Barkley (MacMurray) first sees Smoky as a runaway, and drives him back to the ranch where he meets the owner, Julie Richards (Anne Baxter). He is given a job on her ranch, but the head cowhand is doubtful about Clint and fears that since he refuses to talk about himself, he must have some dreadful secret in his past. Clint and Smoky become close to each other, weathering the hardships of Western life and the suspicions of others together, until one day, Smoky tragically vanishes. Will Clint ever see him again?
Kinoshita’s ambitious and intensely moving film begins as a multi-generational epic about the military legacy of one Japanese family, before settling into an emotionally complex portrayal of parental love during wartime. As the parents of a boy shipped off to battle, Kinuyo Tanaka and Chishu Ryu locate profound depths of feeling that transcend ideology.
Experiment Perilous (1944) Jacques Tourneur, Hedy Lamarr, George Brent, Paul Lukas, Romance, Thriller
In 1903, Dr. Bailey meets a very strange woman on a train, then hears that she has died under mysterious circumstances. Through a friend, he becomes acquainted with the Bederaux family, all of whom seem to be neurotic and secretive; but the beauty of Alida Bederaux draws him into their circle…deeper than he’d planned. Who’s in danger from whom? Who’s crazy? Who can fathom the obscure motivations?
Meitô bijomaru / The Sword (1945) Kenji Mizoguchi, Shôtarô Hanayagi, Kan Ishii, Eijirô Yanagi, Drama
Kiyone Sakurai, an apprentice swordmaker makes a sword for his guardian, Kozaemon Onoda. Onoda breaks the sword while defending his lord which eventually leads to his death at the hands of Naito, when Naito demands to marry his daughter Sasae. Sasae vows to avenge her father’s death and pleads for Kiyone Sakurai to make a special sword for her. So Kiyone and his fellow swordmaker Kiyotsugu go to the master swordsmith Kiyohide Yamatomori to learn their craft and forge the sword.
L’ultima carrozzella / The Last Wagon (1943) Mario Mattoli, Aldo Fabrizi, Anna Magnani, Anita Durante, Comedy
The roman coachman Totò doesn’t want his coach being replaced by cars and doesn’t want his daughter Nannarella to go out with the taxi driver Roberto. But it is Roberto who saves him when he gets into trouble.
Blood on the Moon (1948) Robert Wise, Robert Mitchum, Barbara Bel Geddes, Robert Preston, Action, Drama, Western
When a shady-looking stranger rides into town to join his old friend it is assumed he is a hired gun. But as the new man comes to realise the unlawful nature of his buddy’s business and the way the homesteaders are being used, the two men draw apart to become sworn enemies.
Henry V (1944) Laurence Olivier, Laurence Olivier, Robert Newton, Leslie Banks, Biography, Drama, History
In the inspired Olivier concept, Shakespeare’s play begins as a performance in the Globe Theatre, shifting in broad cinematic terms to an epic narrative of Henry V, who had developed from a dissolute youth to a purposeful monarch. Proving his ability as a soldier and skillful leader, he unites the dissident factions in the English army and goes on to crush the French, against enormous odds, at Agincourt. Arranging a treaty with the French court, he woos Princess Katharine to whom he is formally betrothed as part of the peace agreement.
The Long Night (1947) Crime, Drama, Film-Noir, Anatole Litvak, Henry Fonda, Barbara Bel Geddes, Vincent Price
The credits fade onto a blind man tapping his way down the sidewalk,he enters a dingy boarding house and hears a shot fired in one of the upstairs bedrooms. A door opens from audience POV. A man tumbles out of the door and falls, slides and slithers down two flights of stairs and is dead when he hits the bottom. Then follows nearly 100 minutes of flashback and flashbacks-within-flashbacks about a veteran returing from the war, tired and disillusioned, only to find that he girl he loves has lied to him about her relationship with another man, and that man is sadistic, boastful and tauntful.