Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Hello, Dolly!

1969 American Feature

Cast: Barbra Streisand, Walter Matthau, Michael Crawford, Marianne McAndrew, Danny Lockin, E.J. Peaker, Joyce Ames, Tommy Tune and Louis Armstrong
Director: Gene Kelly
Writer: Ernest Lehman, based on the stage musical by Michael Stewart, based on the play The Matchmaker by Thornton Wilder
Songs: Jerry Herman

Gregarious New York City matchmaker Dolly Levi is hired by grumpy Yonkers shopkeeper Horace Vandergelder to find him a wife. But unbeknownst to him, she has her own sites set on him.


  • Internet Movie Database: 7.2/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes - Critics: 44% / Audience: 76%
  • OMG rating: 8/10

  • DVD/Blu-ray: Available
  • Soundtrack: Available
  • Book: Available


  • Academy Awards for Best Art Direction, Score of a Musical Picture (Original or Adaptation) and Sound; also nominated for Best Picture, Cinematography, Costume Design and Film Editing.
  • American Cinema Editors Award for Best Edited Feature Film.
  • BAFTA Award nominations for Best Actress (Streisand), Cinematography and Art Direction.
  • Directors Guild of America Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Motion Pictures.
  • Golden Globe Award nominations for Best Motion Picture - Musical/Comedy, Director, Actress - Musical/Comedy (Streisand), Supporting Actress (McAndrew) and Most Promising Newcomer - Female (McAndrew).

  • Thornton Wilder's play The Matchmaker, itself based on an earlier Austrian play (itself based on an even earlier English one-act play), was originally a flop on Broadway under the title The Merchant of Yonkers in 1938. Wilder later revised his script, this time focusing on a previously minor character of a matchmaker named Dolly Levi. Under its new title, The Matchmaker was a hit when it opened in 1955; Ruth Gordon starred. The 1958 film version starred Shirley Booth, Anthony Perkins and Shirley MacLaine.
  • Hello, Dolly!, the musical adaptation of The Matchmaker, had its Broadway debut in 1964. Starring Carol Channing in what would become her signature role, the production (which also starred Eileen Brennan and Charles Nelson Reilly) won ten Tony Awards, including Best Musical. For a time it was the longest-running musical in Broadway history.
  • Hello, Dolly! has since been revived on Broadway three times, the first starring Pearl Bailey with an all-black cast, followed by two more with a returning Carol Channing. In 2016 it was announced that Bette Midler would headline its first Broadway production in over twenty years in 2017. Other stage Dollys included Eve Arden, Yvonne De Carlo, Phyllis Diller, Alice Faye, Tovah Feldshuh, Betty Grable, Lainie Kazan, Dorothy Lamour, Michele Lee, Mary Martin, Ethel Merman, Martha Raye, Ginger Rogers, Ann Sothern, Sally Struthers, Jo Anne Worley and even female impersonator Danny La Rue.
  • Potential Director: Stanley Donen.
  • Casting Call: Julie Andrews, Ann-Margret, Doris Day, Sandy Duncan, Shirley MacLaine, Ron Rifkin, Elizabeth Taylor and Jo Anne Worley.
  • Tommy Tune's film debut.
  • Most of the original Broadway production's score was preserved for the film. Two songs were added: "Just Leave Everything to Me" (written specifically for Barbra Streisand by Jerry Herman for the film, it replaced "I Put My Hand In") and "Love Is Only Love" (originally written by Herman for his stage musical Mame).
  • During filming, Barbra Streisand and Walter Matthau did not get along and fought bitterly.
  • Louis Armstrong's final film appearance. In 1964, Armstrong had scored a #1 hit with his recording of the song "Hello, Dolly!"
  • Although it placed fifth at the box office for the year, due to its large budget it was considered a flop and led to the firing of several studio executives at Twentieth Century-Fox.
  • In 1977, Hello, Dolly! was the very first film released to home video (VHS and Betamax) in the United States.
  • Footage from the musical numbers "Put on Your Sunday Clothes" and "It Only Takes a Moment" were prominently featured in the 2008 Disney-Pixar film WALL-E.

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Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Breaking the Code

1996 British Television Movie

Cast: Derek Jacobi, Alun Armstrong, Blake Ritson, William Mannering, Prunella Scales, Julian Kerridge, Harold Pinter, Richard Johnson and Amanda Root
Director: Herbert Wise
Writer: Hugh Whitemore, based on his play and the biography Alan Turing: The Enigma by Andrew Hodges

British mathematical genius Alan Turing grapples with his homosexuality as he struggles to decipher the German Enigma code during World War II.



  • VHS: Available
  • Books: Available

Video clip:

  • BAFTA TV Award nominations for Best Single Drama and Actor (Jacobi).
  • GLAAD Media Award nomination for Outstanding Made for TV Movie.

  • Andrew Hodges' 1992 biography Alan Turing: The Enigma was also the basis for The Imitation Game starring Benedict Cumberbatch as Alan Turing.
  • Hugh Whitemore's play Breaking the Code premiered in London in 1986, then made its Broadway debut the following year. Derek Jacobi starred as Alan Turing in both productions (receiving a Tony Award nomination for the latter) prior to recreating his performance for this film.
  • Originally broadcast in the United States by PBS on Masterpiece Theatre.

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  • In addition to The Imitation Game, Alan Turing is the subject of the 2011 made for TV biopic Codebreaker.

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OMG Movie #631

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Monday, November 2, 2015

Ready? OK!

2008 American Feature

Cast: Michael Emerson, Carrie Preston, Lurie Poston, John G. Preston, Kali Rocha, Tara Karsian, Sandra Ellis-Troy and Sam Pancake
Director/Writer: James Vasquez

When 10-year-old Joshua decides to join the cheerleading squad at his Catholic school, he faces opposition from his single mom, who struggles to understand her Hollywood musical- and pom-pom-loving son.


  • Internet Movie Database: 6.6/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes - Audience: 61%
  • OMG rating: 6/10

  • DVD: Available


  • FilmOut San Diego Awards for Best Narrative Feature, Actress (Preston) and Outstanding Emerging Talent.
  • North Carolina Gay and Lesbian Film Festival Award for Best Male Feature Film.
  • Seattle Lesbian & Gay Film Festival Jury Award for Best Narrative Feature Film.

  • Loosely based on a short film of the same name.
  • Co-stars Carrie Preston (who also served as an executive producer on the film) and Michael Emerson are married.

OMG Movie #630

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Sunday, November 1, 2015

Ladies They Talk About

1933 American Feature

Cast: Barbara Stanwyck, Preston S. Foster, Lyle Talbot, Dorothy Burgess, Lillian Roth, Maude Eburne, Ruth Donnelly, Harold Huber and Robert McWade
Directors: Howard Bretherton and William Keighley
Writers: Brown Holmes, William McGrath and Sidney Sutherland, based on the play Women in Prison by Dorothy Mackaye and Carlton Miles

Gun moll Nan Taylor is captured following a bank robbery and finds herself the "new fish" in San Quentin State Prison.


  • Internet Movie Database: 6.7/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes - Audience: 56%
  • OMG rating: 6/10

  • DVD: Available


  • Remade in 1942 as Lady Gangster starring Faye Emerson.

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Rate Ladies They Talk About below and add your own reviews in the comments section.

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