Thursday, July 5, 2018

Screening of "Humoresque" at Daystar Center July 14

Humoresque (1946)
Where: Daystar Center, 1550 S. State Street, Room 102
When: July 14, 2018
Time: 6:45 p.m.
Hosted by Stephen Reginald


Joan Crawford is Helen Wright, a wealthy patroness of the arts who is used to getting what she wants. She falls in and out of relationships with men, but things change when she meets Paul Boray (John Garfield), a talented young violinist. Helen’s love for Paul becomes obsessive and brings her to the breaking point. Will their love survive or will it destroy them both?


Warner Bros. pulled out all the stops with this lushly produced melodrama. For this film they employed some of the best talent behind the camera, including cinematographer Ernie Haller (Gone With the Wind) and director Jean Negulesco (Johnny Belinda, How to Marry a Millionaire).

General Admission is $5. $3 for Students and Seniors.

Have some Joe and Enjoy the Show!
You can bring food and beverages into the auditorium; we even have small tables set up next to some of the seats. General Admission: $5 Students and Senior Citizens: $3.

John Garfield and Oscar Levant

Join the Chicago Film club; join the discussion
Twice a month we screen classic films and have a brief discussion afterward. For more information, including how to join (it’s free), click here. The Venue 1550 is easily accessible by the CTA. Please visit Transit Chicago for more information on transportation options.

Stephen Reginald is a freelance writer and editor. He has worked at various positions within the publishing industry for over 25 years. Most recently he was executive editor for McGraw-Hill’s The Learning Group Division. A long-time amateur student of film, Reginald hosts “Chicago Film Club,” a monthly movie event held in the South Loop, for the past two years. Reginald has also taught several adult education film classes at Facets Film School, Chicago.

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Happy Independence Day!

Jeanne Crain is ready to light a giant firecracker!

Monday, July 2, 2018

Olivia de Havilland is 102!

Olivia de Havilland turned 102 on July 1. Yes, 102! De Havilland is a true living legend and one of the few movie stars still with us who came to be during Hollywood’s Golden Age.

A two-time Best Actress Oscar winner—To Each His Own 1946 and The Heiress 1949—de Havilland is probably best known to movie audiences today as Melanie Hamilton in Gone With the Wind (1939). De Havilland’s performance in that film is a marvel. In the hands of a lesser actress, Melanie could have been too sickeningly sweet, but in de Havilland’s hands, she’s a strong, compassionate, and intelligent woman. As a friend of mine noted, she understood Scarlett, Ashley, and Rhett better than they understood themselves. Her compassionate, non-judgmental approach endeared herself to all three, even the self-centered Scarlett.


De Havilland was nominated for Best Supporting Actress for her performance as Melanie, but she was bested by Hattie McDaniel who played the irrepressible Mammie. McDaniel also made film history as the first African American to win an Academy Award.

Joan Fontaine (1917 – 2013), de Havilland’s younger sister was the first in the family to win an Oscar. Both sister’s were nominated the same year (1941). Fontaine was nominated for Best Actress for her performance in Alfred Hitchcock’s Suspicion. De Havilland was nominated for Best Actress for her performance in Hold Back the Dawn. De Havilland was so convinced that the winner that year would be Barbara Stanwyck—Stanwyck was nominated for her performance in Ball of Fire, but she also had strong roles in Meet John Doe and The Lady Eve that same year—that she voted for Stanwyck instead of herself. As history would record it, Fontaine was the winner and this was the beginning of the sisters’ famous feud. Fontaine and de Havilland remain the only sisters to have both won Best Actress Oscars.

Celeste Holm and Olivia de Havilland in The Snake Pit

De Havilland has a strong body of work, most of which holds up under 21st Century scrutiny. Her acting is free from affectation and over-the-top-emoting. Her style remains amazingly contemporary.

Next year (2019) will be the 80th anniversary of the release of Gone With the Wind. Let’s hope de Havilland will be with us to celebrate this film milestone.


Some film highlights from Olivia de Havilland’s career:

Captain Blood (1935)—her first pairing with Errol Flynn
The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938)
Gone With the Wind (1939)
Dodge City (1939)
The Strawberry Blonde (1941)
Hold Back the Dawn (1941)
The Male Animal (1942)
Princess O’Rourke (1943)
To Each His Own (1946)*
The Dark Mirror (1946)
The Snake Pit (1948)
The Heiress (1949)*
My Cousin Rachel (1952)
The Proud Rebel (1958)
Light in the Piazza (1962)
Hush…Hush, Sweet Charlotte (1964)

*Best Actress winner

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Screening of “East Side, West Side” at Daystar Center June 19

East Side, West Side (1941)
Where: Daystar Center, 1550 S. State Street, Room 102
When: June 19, 2018
Time: 6:30 p.m.
Hosted by Stephen Reginald


East Side, West Side (1949) is a melodramatic crime drama that stars Barbara Stanwyck, James Mason, Van Heflin, and Ava Gardner. Mason is Brandon Bourne, the unfaithful husband of Jessie Bourne (Barbara Stanwyck). Mason is infatuated with the beautiful and manipulative Isabel Lorrison (Ava Gardner). Jessie does her best to keep her marriage together, but when Isabel is murdered, all bets are off. Police officer Mark Dwyer (Van Heflin) sets out to find the murderer, while finding himself drawn to Jessie in the process.


This all-star M-G-M production features direction by Mervyn Leroy (Gold Diggers of 1933, Random Harvest (1942), Little Women (1949), Quo Vadis (1951)) with a supporting cast that includes Cyd Charisse, Gail Sondergaard, William Conrad, William Frawley, and future First Lady, Nancy Davis Reagan.

Barbara Stanwyck and James Mason in East Side, West Side

Have some Joe and Enjoy the Show!
You can bring food and beverages into the auditorium; we even have small tables set up next to some of the seats. General Admission: $5 Students and Senior Citizens: $3.

Join the Chicago Film club; join the discussion
Twice a month we screen classic films and have a brief discussion afterward. For more information, including how to join (it’s free), click here. The Venue 1550 is easily accessible by the CTA. Please visit Transit Chicago for more information on transportation options.

Stephen Reginald is a freelance writer and editor. He has worked at various positions within the publishing industry for over 25 years. Most recently he was executive editor for McGraw-Hill’s The Learning Group Division. A long-time amateur student of film, Reginald hosts “Chicago Film Club,” a monthly movie event held in the South Loop, for the past two years. Reginald has also taught several adult education film classes at Facets Film School, Chicago.

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

10 Things You May Not Know About Henry Fonda

Henry Fonda (1905 – 1982) was one of the most popular and enduring stars of Hollywood’s Golden Age. He starred in dozens of movies, but he loved the theater. On Broadway he starred in Mr. Roberts, Two for the Seasaw, Clarence Darrow, and First Monday in October. Fonda is also the father of Jane and Peter Fonda.

1. Fonda can trace his European ancestral roots to Genoa, Italy and the Netherlands.

2. He was a Boy Scout and reached the rank of Eagle Scout.

3. Dodie Brando (Marlon Brando’s mother) suggested that he try out for a play at the Omaha Community Playhouse, thus launching his acting career.

Henry Fonda and Janet Gaynor in The Farmer Takes a Wife

4. He went to Hollywood in 1935 to star opposite Janet Gaynor in The Farmer Takes a Wife, in the role he originated on Broadway.

5. James Stewart followed his friend Fonda to Hollywood where they shared a home next door to Greta Garbo.

Fonda as Abraham Lincoln in Young Mr. Lincoln
6. In 1939 he starred in three highly successful films: Young Mr. Lincoln, his first picture with the legendary John Ford, Jesse James, costarring Tyrone Power, and Drums Along the Mohawk, costarring Claudette Colbert, also directed by Ford.

7. Ford insisted that Fonda play Tom Joad in the screen adaptation of The Grapes of Wrath (1940) over the objections of Twentieth Century-Fox studio head Darryl Zanuck (he wanted Tyrone Power to play Tom).

Fonda impressed critics with his prat falls in The Lady Eve
8. He surprised the critics with his comedic performance (including his amazing physical comedy that included a half-dozen or so pratfalls) in The Lady Eve (1941), directed by Preston Sturges and costarring Barbara Stanwyck.

9. Fonda enlisted in the United States Navy during WW II; he served for 3 years and was awarded the Navy Presidential Unit Citation and the Bronze Star.

10. He received only two Academy Award Best Actor nominations, during his long film career, for The Grapes of Wrath and On Golden Pond (1981); he won for the latter, making him the oldest recipient of the award.

Monday, June 11, 2018

Field Trip: “West Side Story” at AMC River East 21 on the big screen June 24

West Side Story on the big screen
Date: June 24 
Where: AMC River East 21, 322 East Illinois, Chicago, IL 
Time: 2:00 p.m.


This electrifying musical, with music by Leonard Bernstein and lyrics from Stephen Sondheim, sets the ageless tragedy of Romeo and Juliet in the slums of 1950’s New York. The event will feature exclusive insight from TCM Host Ben Mankiewicz.

You may order tickets in advance by clicking here. Or purchase tickets at the theater.


If you’d like to join the Chicago Film Club Meetup group for this event, I’ll be holding a Meetup sign by the concessions. Depending how everyone feels, we can go to the theater bar for a discussion afterward.

I will be holding this sign by the concessions.


For more information on the Chicago Film Club, click this link.



Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Screening of "It Started with Eve" June 9 at Daystar Center

It Started with Eve (1941)
Where: Daystar Center, 1550 S. State Street
When: June 9, 2018
Time: 6:45 p.m.
Hosted by Stephen Reginald

It Started with Eve (1941) is a romantic comedy starring Deanna Durbin, Charles Laughton, and Robert Cummings. Cummings is Johnny Reynolds, the son of millionaire Jonathan Reynolds (Laughton) who is on his deathbed. Johnny’s father’s one wish is that he would get to see his son’s fiance, Gloria Pennington (Margaret Tallichet) before he dies. When Johnny discovers that Gloria and her mother are not at their hotel, he asks hatcheck girl Anne Terry (Durbin) to pretend to be his fiance for the evening. Things get complicated when the elder Reynolds has a “miraculous” recovery and Johnny scrambles to explain to his fiancee that Anne means nothing to him. Then there’s his father who has taken an immediate liking to Anne. Anne is an aspiring opera singer who hopes to get to sing at a party that Jonathan is planning to introduce his "future daughter-in-law" to his influential friends and associates. Will Johnny be able to fool his father long enough so that Anne gets her big break?
Durbin was one of the highest paid movie actress in the world when It Started with Eve was released. This film is considered one of her best, in a film career that saw the actress headline 21 movies from 1936 to 1948. New York Times critic Bosley Crowther lauded the film and the performances of Laughton and Durbin. He said, “Miss Durbin is as refreshing and pretty as she has ever been and sings three assorted songs—including a Tchaikovsky waltz—with lively charm.” Durbin and Laughton became great friends during filming. They made another movie together, Because of Him in 1946.

Deanna Durbin, Robert Cummings, and Charles Laughton


Have some Joe and Enjoy the Show!
You can bring food and beverages into the auditorium; we even have small tables set up next to some of the seats. General Admission: $5 Students and Senior Citizens: $3.

Join the Chicago Film club; join the discussion
Twice a month we screen classic films and have a brief discussion afterward. For more information, including how to join (it’s free), click here. The Venue 1550 is easily accessible by the CTA. Please visit Transit Chicago for more information on transportation options.

Stephen Reginald is a freelance writer and editor. He has worked at various positions within the publishing industry for over 25 years. Most recently he was executive editor for McGraw-Hill’s The Learning Group Division. A long-time amateur student of film, Reginald hosts “Chicago Film Club,” a monthly movie event held in the South Loop, for the past two years. Reginald has also taught several adult education film classes at Facets Film School, Chicago.



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