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Entries in Ingrid Bergman (32)

Sunday
Feb102019

Great Moments in Screen Kissing: Notorious (1946)

For the next few days Team Experience will be sharing favourite screen kisses. Here's Seán...

Seán here in Berlin, saying hallo! to you with the adequate amount of Prussian warmth. I'll be filling you in with all my hot takes on only a handful of the myriad of films premiering at the Festspiele. But first a quick wink to one of my favourite on-screen kisses (the whole lot of them).

Alfred Hitchcock was a master of genre and form, leaving behind a body of work admired by scholars and movie lovers alike. Aside from being a good, old, problematic trickster on set, he also knew how to do it within the confines of the screen. The Production Code which outlined what was decent and indecent on film had a long list of cuttable offenses. Even toilets were verboten. But what if the inclusion of one was essential to the story, as it was when Marion Crane disposes of a letter in Psycho? Hitchcock knew how to skirt the rules and Notorious (1946) is one of the best examples of this...

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Friday
Jul202018

Vintage '43

Let's soak in some 1943 since the Smackdown is but one week ago. Here's a look into what was hot hot hot that year in many fields and categories for context...

This is the Army (1943)

Great Big Box Office Hits 

  1. For Whom the Bell Tolls
  2. This is the Army
  3. The Song of Bernadette
  4. Thousands Cheer
  5. Star Spangled Rhythm
  6. Casablanca
  7. Air Force
  8. Destination Tokyo
  9. A Guy Named Joe
  10. Coney Island

Oscar's Best Picture List  

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Wednesday
Jul182018

The Furniture: Mattes, Moons and Mountains in For Whom the Bell Tolls

Daniel Walber's series on Production Design. Click on the images to see them in magnified detail.

Sam Wood directing Ingrid Bergman and Gary Cooper in 1943's top picture

It can seem kind of crazy that For Whom the Bell Tolls was the top box office hit of 1943. The star power of Ingrid Bergman and Gary Cooper played into it, of course. So did the fact that it was an adaptation of Ernest Hemingway’s popular and recent novel. And there’s the obvious appeal of Cooper fighting a bunch of Fascists, a year and a half after America’s entry into World War Two.

The thing is, he doesn’t actually do all that much fighting. No one in the film does. It’s mostly a contemplative interlude on the fringes of the Spanish Civil War, a brutal vacation with a band of hardened guerrillas, a doomed love story built from trauma and consummated on the high rocks. It’s 165 minutes of memory, frustration and stasis.

It also wound up with nine Oscar nominations, including both cinematography and art direction. And the collaboration between cinematographer Ray Rennahan and the design team of Hans Dreier, Haldane Douglas and Bertram C. Granger is really the highlight of the film, even against the life-giving energy of Katina Paxinou’s Oscar-winning performance...

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Monday
Oct092017

The Furniture: The Gas Lighting of Gaslighting in Gaslight

"The Furniture," by Daniel Walber, is our weekly series on Production Design. You can click on the images to see them in magnified detail.

This week I’d like to talk about gas lighting. That’s in addition to gaslighting, which is obviously related. Basically, I’d like to talk about the way that Gaslight (1944) uses gas lighting to distill the concept of gaslighting. It was so effective that “gaslighting” stuck, and has remained a popularly understood concept nearly 75 years after the film debuted.

Of course, these days the term has been almost completely divorced from memory of the original play or its various adaptations. The 1944 version is mostly remembered for winning Ingrid Bergman her first Oscar, and deservedly so. Her performance is astonishing, newly powerful with each successive viewing.

However, the film did win a second Oscar. Not for director George Cukor, who wasn’t even nominated. Nor for cinematographer Joseph Ruttenberg, who lost to Joseph LaShelle’s work on Laura...

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Saturday
Jul012017

Young and Hungry Susan Hayward

HAYWARD CENTENNIAL FINALE

by Nathaniel R

Oscar buffs might be the only people who still regularly talk about Susan Hayward but her Oscar record was impressive enough to warrant that conversation. Five nominations with one win, all in the Best Actress category, is not nothing. In fact, her record is a match with Audrey Hepburn and Anne Bancroft and another Susan (Sarandon). But when I first got interested in Susan Hayward before I'd seen any of her films, what drew me in was the abundant hysteria within the posters, titles, and taglines for her movies. Or to quote Rupert Everett in My Best Friend's Wedding:


The misery. The exquisite tragedy. The Susan Hayward of it all!"

She lived (onscreen at least) for exclamation points so it's fitting then that her Oscar win came from I Want to Live! (1958). But to close out our celebration counterintuitively in reverse, let's end with a film from when Hayward was a young and hungry actress without much pull...

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Wednesday
Mar152017

On this day in history, the 1944 Oscars

Today in 1945, the 17th annual Academy Awards were held with Going My Way (1944) the big winner taking 7 Oscars. This year is a interesting for a couple of reasons...

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