The movie clip below is from the 1941 film Pimpernel Smith in which Leslie Howard plays Horatio Smith in what is essentially an updated version of The Scarlet Pimpernel. On the eve of WW II Smith, a British archaeologist, heads up an excavation in Nazi Germany. The Germans allow his expedition because he tells them that he's looking for evidence that the roots of German civilization were Aryan. In actuality, Smith is using his job as a cover to rescue people from concentration camps and smuggle them to England.
This scene from Mr. Smith Goes To Washington is of naive, idealistic, and completely unprepared new Senator Jeff Smith-played by Jimmy Stewart- attempting to put together a bill. His world-weary, cynical and politically-savvy secretary Clarissa Saunders- portrayed by the great Jean Arthur- sits him down to try to explain to him the facts of life... or at least, of Washington.
In honour of Independence Day for our neighbours to the south, here's the clip of the prisoners in the Stalag Luft III camp in The Great Escape celebrating the Fourth of July. Out of respect for the occasion, I will refrain from discussing the fact that no Americans were actually involved in the real Great Escape- mostly British, Canadians, Australians, and prisoners of a few more nationalities. Be that as it may, this is a great scene.
As a palate cleanser from Rent, let's watch a clip of a great movie- 1938's The Adventures of Robin Hood. The legend of Robin Hood must be one of the most frequently filmed stories in existence; I have seen quite a few of them, and this version has always been my favourite. I must confess, however, that I have a fondness for the 1973 animated Disney version as well. The Robin Hood movie which I didn't really appreciate was 1991's Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves starring Kevin Costner. I had never bothered to see it, but some guy friends insisted we watch it one movie night as it was one of their favourites. They were somewhat annoyed when I and another sister who was present kept giggling uncontrollably at the "dramatic" parts, like Christian Slater's angst-y rant. But how could we help it? We had grown up watching the wonderful 1938 film, which is so much better than Prince of Thieves, which was joyless, and funnier when it didn't mean to be that it was when it was attempting to be humorous. The Adventures of Robin Hood has a stellar cast: Errol Flynn, Olivia de Havilland, Basil Rathbone, and Claude Rains to name just a few. It's a great adventure story with a lot of heart and humour, and also an amazing sound track. Love it.
This is a clip from one of my favourite adventure movies: Gunga Din, starring Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Cary Grant, Victor McLaglen, and Sam Jaffe. I love this film. In this clip, a rescue mission is being mounted for Sgt. Cutter (Cary Grant) who has been captured by the Thuggees.
I thought that I'd start occasionally sharing a short clip from a film that I enjoy. To begin with, I'm going to post a scene from one of my very favourite movies: You Can't Take It With You. In this scene, Tony (Jimmy Stewart) meets his fiancee's wacky family for the first time and while he's there an IRS agent also comes to call: