The Barkleys of Broadway (1949, USA, Walters)
Here it’s way past the prime of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, but they’re more alive than ever. It’s the Comden & Green magic. Featuring Oscar Levant, the gnome-faced mascot of Hollywood musicals. Watched it all.
The Adventures of Jane (1949, UK, Whiting)
Jane was a comic strip character who had the habit of “accidentally” losing most of her clothes, thus pioneering fanservice. Wikipedia earnestly speculates that Jane’s last name Gay did not necessarily imply that she was a lesbian, as “gay” may possibly[original research?] have had a different meaning[citation required] in 1949. Watched: 10 minutes.
I Was a Male War Bride (1949, USA, Hawks)
I’m becoming familiar with post-war Berlin as a movie backdrop. Everyone was making a Berlin movie at this time. It seems to work well with everything, from sentimental neo-realist movies to screwball comedies such as this. Berlin really is the most promising new actor to emerge in the late 1940′s. Oh, and that airhead Cary Grant is unusually interesting here as well. Watched it all.
Christopher Columbus (1949, UK, MacDonald)
Columbus was a 15th century visionary who dared to believe – against all “common sense” – that the world was round. Watched: 6 minutes. Actually any educated person at the time knew the world was round. Columbus just thought it was small enough that he could sail around to Asia. It’s not, and he would have died if there hadn’t just happened to be another continent in the way. Which, when you think about is, is to be extremely lucky.