Saturday, November 20, 2010

Peter Lorre

From the Maltese Falcon, obviously

1.  From his biography on-line:

During the House Un-American Activities Committee's investigation of Communist infiltration of Hollywood during the 1940s and 1950s, Lorre was interviewed by investigators and asked to name anyone suspicious he had met since coming to the US. He responded by giving them a list of everyone he knew.

To quote David Byrne: Any questions?
To quote David Byrne: Same as it ever was.

2.  I happened to see "East Side, West Side" yesterday on TCM.  The best lines are James Mason's, as he makes a vain attempt to win back Barbara Stanwyck at the end of the movie.  To paraphrase.  "Our marriage has been good.  You learned to put up with the hockey games, I learned to put up with the ballet and the poetry readings.  Let's not throw it all away."  (The best scene is surely the fist fight in the car between Heflin and Bev Michaels, who in a real fight would have won, but who needed to be knocked out for the plot to continue as written.  Eventually Heflin does the job.)

What?  Libby and I were both incredulous.  Stanwyck would have dragged Mason to the hockey game, kicking and screaming, from the ballet or the poetry reading.  I'll have to rent the movie from Netflix to try to figure out if the lines were meant as a subtext.  It's been done.  See, e.g., my two favorite bizarro westerns, "Johnny Guitar," and "The Outlaw."

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