litlover12: (JS_K)

Have a picture of Alec Guinness with a kitten.



If I had any graphics skills, I'd fix that problem with the white marks. Alas, I don't. But I think it's pretty cute anyway!

Update: Fortunately, [livejournal.com profile] lindahoyland DOES have graphics skills, and she cleaned it up for me. Thanks, Linda!

litlover12: (Darth2)
I said spoilery, folks. You've been warned!

Proceed at your own risk )
litlover12: (Castle)
(This post is for The Wonderful Grace Kelly Blogathon at The Wonderful World of Cinema).

The Swan is a movie that took a long time to grow on me. At first I liked it solely for the costumes and the cast (much the same way I like Downton Abbey). Who couldn't like that cast? Grace Kelly! Alec Guinness! Louis Jourdan! Agnes Moorehead, Jessie Royce Landis, Estelle Winwood . . . it's an embarrassment of riches. But the actual story -- that left me cold . . . as cold as Grace's character, Princess Alexandra "the Iceberg," supposedly is.Read more... )
litlover12: (AG)
This post is for the British Invaders Blogathon at A Shroud of Thoughts.

Novelist Daphne du Maurier is best known for Gothic romances like Rebecca; her 1957 novel The Scapegoat -- part mystery, part thriller, part domestic drama -- though excellent, has largely flown under the radar. A recent BBC adaptation starring Matthew Rhys, which changed the setting from France to Britain and altered many other major elements of the story, brought some attention to it. But there's a previous version, a 1959 feature film directed by Robert Hamer and starring two of my favorite actors -- Alec Guinness and Bette Davis -- that I believe deserves to be much better known. (Hopefully, its release on DVD by Warner Archive will help with that!)
Read more... )
litlover12: (GK1)
Some of my friends and I have occasionally tossed around the question, "Which four movies would you pick if you were a Turner Classic Movies guest programmer?" The subject came up on Twitter again the other day, and I finally decided to go ahead and actually pick my four films!

And here they are . . . )
litlover12: (Books)
Pretty much everyone else is doing a books post, so I figured I might as well join in. :-) Below (in chronological order of my reading them) are the books to which I gave five stars this year on Goodreads.

Read more... )
litlover12: (AG)
I wrote a little tribute for Alec Guinness's 100th birthday today. Here it is. (Apologies to those of you who are also my Facebook friends, and are getting this twice!)
litlover12: (AG)
(My review of Alec Guinness's last book, A Positively Final Appearance, cross-posted at Goodreads.)

"When I had finished it I felt bereft," writes Alec Guinness of a novel he had been reading. I know how he felt. Only it's worse for me, because this is the last of his books. There are no more of these delightful treasures from him, and that leaves me feeling very bereft indeed.Read more... )
litlover12: (AG)
Alec Guinness continues to charm and delight in memoir #2. I was very moved by this:

"Barry Humphries . . . says, referring to my memoirs, Blessings in Disguise, 'I wish I could say as you do in your last sentence, that I had never lost a friend.' Well, I am adding a few words to that in the reissue of the book later this year. It will now read, after 'Of one thing I can boast; I am unaware of ever having lost a friend,' the words, 'Re-reading that last sentence in 1996, eleven years after it was written, I am saddened to say I can no longer make such a boast. Mea culpa. Mea culpa. Mea maxima culpa.'"

Since I mentioned loving that very same sentence in Blessings, perhaps I should be bothered by this addendum. But instead, it makes me want to give him a hug and say, "Oh, honey. It's okay. Nobody's perfect."

That's really weird, isn't it? I'm pretty sure that's weird. Also, it would shock and horrify his proper British soul. But I want to anyway.
litlover12: (AG)
Volume 2 of Alec Guinness's memoirs (My Name Escapes Me) got here today. The plan was to order it and then to take it along on my trip up to my grandmother's next week. But it's early. I don't have time to read it this week -- I've got a boatload of books in various stages of being read and reviewed right now -- and it's going to just about kill me to see it sitting there waiting for me till next Monday!

Really, Sir Alec, I thought you had better timing than that.
litlover12: (Darth)
Behold the Star Wars MBTI chart. As an INFJ, I'm Obi-Wan! (Told you Sir Alec and I are soulmates!)
litlover12: (TKS5)

Just read this great essay by Ronald Neame, director of the film The Horse's Mouth (haven't seen it yet, but hope to soon). He's talking about a conversation he had with Guinness during filming:






". . . May I tell you something that may help you to understand actors?”

“Please,” I replied, “God knows I can do with it.”

What he said next should not be forgotten by anyone who wants to work with actors:

“All so-called normal human beings go through a period when they want to act. This is usually between the ages of ten and fourteen. Little boys play cowboys and Indians; little girls dress up in their mother’s clothes, putting on lipstick. As they mature into adults, ordinary people grow out of this adolescent phase and become doctors or accountants or bankers. But the actor, in the part of his mind that still wants to act, remains no older than fourteen. So, Ronnie, that’s how you must treat me. I need to be praised. I need to be patted on the back. I need to be told I’m good! And the more you encourage me, the better I will perform for you.” As an afterthought he said, “And sometimes, I just need to be smacked.”



You guys. Alec Guinness is my soulmate. We were made for each other. (The fact that he married someone else, and the fact that he's been dead for 13 years: minor details.) This is me. Substitute "writer" for "actor" and this is SO me . . . right down to the "need to be smacked" part.

We may never have met in this life, Sir Alec, but you get me. 
litlover12: (ATOTC2)
Damn the Defiant!, which I just Netflixed, is an absorbing little British war flick, and it also happens to star two of my very favorite men from the British classics, Guinness and Bogarde. Pardon me while I indulge in a few screencaps, won't you?

DTD1
DTD2
DTD3

(I really should have said ear candy -- those two voices are something to swoon over.)
litlover12: (AH3)
After seeing The Lavender Hill Mob, I went on eBay and splurged on this postcard, of a behind-the-scenes moment. Not much of a splurge, really; I think it was something like 3 bucks. But it was nice to see two of my favorites -- one longtime favorite and one newer favorite -- together, even if Audrey's part was only about 20 seconds long! This was one of her very earliest roles.

alec audrey
litlover12: (LV)
They're giving us an Alec Guinness day AND a Maggie Smith day!
litlover12: (Classic men)
A side benefit of the British films project: I recently picked up a copy of Blessings in Disguise, the first volume of Alec Guinness's memoirs, when I saw it in a used bookstore. Just finished reading it last night. What a marvelous book. The man could not only act, he could write. Really write.

For those interested, I'll cross-post my Goodreads review below the cut.
Read more... )
litlover12: (ATOTC2)
Besides films in the BFI top 10, here are a few other British classics I've seen recently . . .
Read more... )

A lost art

Jan. 23rd, 2013 09:16 am
litlover12: (Casablanca2)
Last night, after many, many increments of Lawrence of Arabia, I saw these words: The End.

(But then there was "Exit Music." Ah, '60s movies, I love you.)

Read more... )
litlover12: (Casablanca)
I'm about a quarter of the way through Lawrence of Arabia, and I will concede, it's not bad so far. Truthfully, I'm sure that when you get Peter O'Toole, Claude Rains, and Alec Guinness on board, it's difficult to have it turn out badly. (Even if Guinness looks about as Arabian as a Yorkshire pudding.)

But -- forgive me -- I'm gobsmacked by the idea that that score won an Oscar and is hailed as one of the greatest scores of all time. Maurice Jarre seems to have gone to the "Hey, guys! I wrote two really great bars! I think I'll repeat them forty-seven thousand times!" school of composition.

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