Tag Archives: Best Picture Winner

The Life of Emile Zola: Best Picture Winner – 1937

zola_1902b

The Basics – The Life of Emile Zola (1937) – Director – William Dieterle; Paul Muni, Gale Sondergaard, Joseph Schildkraut; Run Time – 116 mins. – Biography, Drama – “The biopic of the famous French muckraking writer and his involvement in fighting the injustice of the Dreyfuss Affair.”

Prior Knowledge

Kristy – The only thing I know is that Emile Zola was a well-known French author and activist.

Koob – The only knowledge that I have of this movie was what I read on Wikipedia about Emile Zola; that he was a French writer and that he wrote “J’accuse” and was involved in the Dreyfus Affair

Fun Facts from IMDB

The film was shot in reverse order; Paul Muni grew his own beard for the role, and it was trimmed and darkened as he proceeded to scenes where Zola is younger. His makeup took 3-1/2 hours to apply each morning.

 Studio boss Jack L. Warner, who was himself Jewish, personally ordered that the word “Jew” be removed from all dialogue in this movie, apparently in order not to offend the Nazi regime and hurt business for the film in Germany–this according to Ben Urwand in his controversial 2013 study, ‘The Collaboration: Hollywood’s Pact With Hitler’.
This was the first film to receive 10 Academy Award nominations.

Considered highly contentious in France, the film wasn’t granted a proper release in that country until 1952

Viewing Source – Amazon Instant Video ($2.99 rental)

Post Viewing Responses

Ratings (with 1 star = the worst and 5 stars = the best)

Koob: 2 stars

Kristy: 2 atars

Double Gobble Score: 2 stars

The Takeaway: A fairly standard biopic with some solid acting and an interesting history lesson.

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The Great Ziegfeld – Best Picture Winner; 1936

Great Zeigfeld

The Basics – The Great Ziegfeld (1936) – Director, Robert Z. Leonard; starring William Powell, Myrna Loy, Louise Rainer; Run Time – 176 mins. – Biography, Drama, Musical -“This biography follows the ups and downs of Florenz Ziegfeld, famed producer of extravagant stage revues.”

Prior Knowledge

Kristy – I know of Ziegfled as a legend on Broadway, however, I know nothing about the actual film itself but I’m expecting large musical numbers with fancy, feathered ladies.

Koob – I have heard of the Ziegfled Follies and know that Ziegfeld was a legendary producer on Broadway but know nothing about the actual film.

Fun Facts from IMDB

-The sequence “A Pretty Girl Is Like a Melody” was filmed in two lengthy takes after several weeks of rehearsals and filming (a definite cut is made when moving to a close-up on the singer dressed as Pagliacci, presumably to effect a change of camera position, necessary to start the inexorable move up the huge staircase). It features 180 performers and cost $220,000; 4,300 yards of rayon silk were used for the curtains in the scene.

-Myrna Loy, who received second billing for this film, does not actually appear on screen until 2 hours and 15 minutes into the movie.

-Pat Nixon (then Patricia Ryan), the future wife of Richard Nixon and the First Lady of the United States from 1969 to 1974, makes an uncredited appearance as a Ziegfeld girl.

-A.A. Trimble, who portrays Will Rogers in the film, was actually a Cleveland map salesman who frequently impersonated Rogers at Rotarian lunches.

Viewing Source – Amazon Instant Video ($2.00 rental)

Post Viewing Responses

Ratings (with 1 star = the worst and 5 stars = the best)

Koob: 3 stars

Kristy: 2 stars

Double Gobble Score: 2.5 stars

The Takeaway: Watch for the elaborate recreation of Ziegfeld’s Follies, but make sure you clear your schedule (it’s a long one!).

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Chicago Style Hot Dog and New York Style Hot Dog for “The Great Ziegfeld”

Chicago Dog
New York Dog

In honor of Florenz Ziegfeld who was born in Chicago but was an adopted son of New York City, we decided to put up a poll on two classic variations of the good old-fashioned, all-American hot dog; the Chicago dog or the New York dog.  Which do you prefer?

Chicago Dog Toppings – yellow mustard; chopped white onions; bright green sweet pickle relish; a dill pickle spear; tomato slices or wedges; pickled sport peppers; and a dash of celery salt.

New York Dog Toppings – all-beef Kosher dog with sauerkraut and a smear of mustard

Koob prefers the New York style but Kristy prefers the following:

Kristy’s Veggie Dog – Tofurkey brand veg dog with vegetarian baked beans, ketchup, spicy brown mustard, and relish

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Cavalcade- Best Picture Winner; 1933

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The Basics – Cavalcade (1933) – Director, Frank Lloyd; starring Diana Wynyard, Clive Brook, Una O’Connor; Run Time – 112 mins. – Drama, Romance  “A cavalcade of English life from New Year’s Eve 1899 until 1933 seen through the eyes of well-to-do Londoners Jane and Robert Marryot.”

Prior Knowledge

Kristy – It’s about a British family, that’s all I know.

Koob – Once again, I saw this movie years ago but remember close to nothing about it except that it follows a British family through different events from turn of the century through World War I.

Fun Facts from IMDB

-Betty Grable, in one of her earliest film appearances played, with no screen credit, “Girl on couch.”
-The second most popular film of 1933.
 
-At present, this is the only Best Picture Oscar winner not to be available on DVD in the Region 1 territory. It can be bought as part of the 20th Century Fox 75th Anniversary Collection, but the studio has no plans to release it separately.
 
-The third war film within 6 years to win the Best Picture Academy Award, the others being Wings (1927) and All Quiet on the Western Front (1930).
 
-Has the fewest IMDb votes out of all Best Picture Oscar winners as of April 2013 (less than two thousand).

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