Wednesday, January 18, 2012

In Pictures: Paul Newman

In Pictures: Paul Newman

Here is our 23rd installment of this very successful feature to "Love Those Classic Movies!!!" This article is simply an enjoyment via beautiful pictures of our favorite golden age classic stars. Not a lot of writing at all or tid bits or extras just simply as it is stated, "in pictures!" Hope you all enjoy one of the original actors who defined cool on the silver screen Paul Newman and his brilliance in pictures, cheers!!!!




Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Cool Hand Luke (1967) "On the chain gang"

Cool Hand Luke (1967)  / Warner Bros.
Directed By: Stuart Rosenberg
Starring: Paul Newman, George Kennedy, Jo Van Fleet, Clifton James & Dennis Hopper

Tagline: "What we've got here is failure to communicate."

Nominared for 4 Academy Awards in 1968 includung Best Actor for Paul Newman.
Academy Awards
1968WonOscarBest Actor (Supporting Role) - George Kennedy
NominatedOscarBest Lead Actor  - Paul Newman
Best Music, Original Music Score - Lalo Schifrin
Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium
Donn Pearce & Frank Pierson


In the late 1940's our leading man Lucas "Luke" Jackson (Newman) is caught in a drunken act of cutting the tops off of parking meters. The policae officers caught him and then he was sentenced to go to prison for 2 years in which he had to travel to Florida prison camp to do the entire sentense. Lucas should thought twice about that one foolish evening going downtown and taking anger out on public property.

Luke is now in the new home for the next 2 years where the iron fisted Captain (Martin) rules the prison. This captain knows all and quickly does not like Luke. The other inmantes quickly learn and find out that Luke is a decorated WWII hero and is then given the name "Lusa War-Hero" though from the start our hero fails to learn the pecking order that is already been established in the prison and does not adhere to it. The leader in the prison itself that tells everyone how it is going to be is Dragline (Kennedy) and the pair of Dragline/Luke spar it out since not seeing eye to eye with how things are going be managned. The guards watch and enjoy the fight and do nothing to stop. The fight itself is long and Luke is severely outmatched by Dragline but will not stand down nor stay down which gets the respoect from Dragline in the end along with everyone else's.

During a poker game and a very good bluffing from Luke, Dragline then gives him the nickname: "Cool Hand Luke." Luke gets a lovely visit from his mother an nephew that renews his outlook that perhaps things will get better soon. At the prison camp life is very rough where Luke has to endure solitary confinement since being disobedient. After all of these actions that try to tear his inner strength and determination Luke still has a big spirit that can and will not be broken by no one and nothing that is done. The other prisones around him look up and admire him for this trait.  He continues to smile at the face of guards and others like Boss Godfery (Morgan Woodward) and showing that he still has his independence.

A big momentous day happens when Kule leads all the other prisoners tasked to pave a road in a single day. They prove it can be done. The prison now marks Luke as a trouble and they need to squash this here and now.  Upon finding about his mother's passing the prison rather then allowing him to do his regular tasks places him into solitary confinement since they are afriad he may try to escape and attend his mother's funeral which they are right now in his mind he wants nothing more than to escape.

Luke tried to escape the first time and this does not work and is captured the Captian speaks to the prisoners and warns them of trying to do this again. There is another escape performed that at first is successful but short lived and then is returned to prison. Then finally there is a third escape that Dragline decides to escape alongside Luke. Maybe this 3rd escape with Dragline by his side is what Luke needs and is freed both mentally and phyically from all of the abuse that he could simply not ensure any will have to see the film to see if the thrid time is a charm......

Sunday, January 15, 2012

The Long, Hot Summer (1958) "The man that changes a southern family forever!"

The Long, Hot Summer (1958) / Twentieth Century FOX
Directed By: Martin Ritt
Starring: Paul Newman, Joanne Woodward, Anthony Franciosa, Orson Welles, Lee Remick, Angela Lansbury, & Richard Anderson. 

Tagline: "NOTHING - BUT NOTHING !...WILL BE WITHHELD!...when this searing expose of this Southern family comes boldly to the screen!"

~ Paul Newman awarded Best Actor at the "Cannes Film Fesetival" for his role.
Cannes Film Festival
1958 WonBest ActorPaul Newman
NominatedPalme d'OrMartin Ritt


This steamy southern story centers on a young handsome man named Ben Quick (Newman) who has no money and is simply living life with what he has on him and wondering. One thing is for sure Ben has ambitions to be a great and wealthy man and his current status just hitching rides here and there with an aimless life is simply not going to do for him. His latest stop brings him to Frenchman's Bend, Mississippi in a lovely convertible driven by a wealthy laady who lives in the town Clara Vaerner (Woodward) a school teacher and her sister-in-law Eula (Remick). Ben has struck gold with getting a ride with the wealthiest family in town and being close to them is the place to be and is starting to learn this quick.

Upon arriving to town the girls meet with the
head of the Varner family clan, Will (Welles) who also meets Ben and instantly likes him. What Will likes about Ben is that after talking to him he sees himself within him: the ambition and the eagerness to do whatever it takes to climb to the top. This makes the men instantly friends and the qualities he finds within Ben are exactly what he wants from his own son Jody (Franciosa) but is sorely lacking. At the same time Will is not happy with the choice of the boyfriend that Clara has chosen who is Alan Stewart (Anderson) who is nothing more that a well refined southern man and one big "Mama's Boy."

The plan Will has it to put Ben and his lovely daughter Clara together and move the fool in his mind Alan out of the picture. Will is needing new blood in the family that will keep the family and strong heirs and Ben is the man to do that. Ben spends a lot of time now at the Varner's mansion and finds this is exactly what he has been needing and does not want to leave again and will do what it takes to stay. Ben is truly attracted to Clara and is determined to charm her to wed and take the family's large portion of wealth and property to claim his own. The path one can see is already being layed out in his mind when spending time with the family each and every day becoming a permanent fixture which is perfection to Will. Clara now is seeing Ben more in the home and seems to be not enchanted nor smitten by his charm. Will offers the wealth that Ben could never dream of and wants that the most but then more time with Clara does find true affection.

The Varner family is not all perfection behind closed doors Will has had a long time mistress Minnie Littlejohn (Lansbury). Minnie has been for a long time been very unhappy with her situation within the family having to hide out of site and mind of all and finally is pressuring Will to make things proper and wed her and make her the real Mrs. Varner. Ben takes on more of a role within the family such as getting a position as clerk in the general sotre and then is invited to live with the Varner's at their large mansion for good. Jody knows what his father and also Ben is doing and hates it and mentions it to his father and to no veil is never heard nor is anything done.

Then there are some horrible questionable things done to Jody by Ben with coins to get him on his good side that horribly goes wrong. Jody is crushed and burns an entrance of a barn and the entire town thinks it was Ben who did this since his father they find was a barn-burning person. The town decides to get a rope and lynch when Clara comes driving and rescues Ben from this pending death. Will then takes the blame of starting the fire. From this experience Ben opens up candidly with Clara about being a young boy at ten and how he had to deal with his father burning barns and had to alert him each time. Clara fears now that Ben may leave the town that has been up and down with him as a reception and it looks like their is more in planned for them, we shall see......