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Archive for February 23rd, 2010

Puns Galore!

Marie Rambert DBE, founder of a famous ballet company, on being made a Dame described the event as, the ‘The Dameing of the Shrew.”

2.

Mrs. Patrick Campbell, the actress once complained that in her profession she could not stand them calling her Mrs.Pat. She explained, “The ‘Pat’ is the last straw that breaks the Campbell’s back”.

4.

Noel Coward’s producers were trying to come up with a suitable title for the Night of 100 Stars’ Charity Show.

One suggested, “Summer Stars,” to which Coward replied, “Some are not.”

5.

Max Beerbohm, ‘the incomparable Max’ once declined to be lured into hiking to the summit of a Swiss Alp. “Put me down,” the author of Zuleika Dobson said firmly, “as an Anti-cimb Max.”

6.

Poet and author Hilaire Belloc expressed this wish, “When I

am dead, I hope it may be said his sins were scarlet, but his books were read.”

7.

At a dinner party at Buckingham Palace, when a waiter spilt gravy on her latest gown, actress Beatrice Lillie (Lady Peel)

snapped, “Never darken my Dior again!”

8.

Called to address the guests at a Thanksgiving dinner, William M. Ewarts, the Secretary of State under Hayes began: “ You have been giving your attention to turkey stuffed with sage; you are about to consider a sage stuffed with turkey.”

9.

In his early days Oliver Wendell Holmes practiced medicine and taught anatomy at Harvard and Dartmouth. People seemed to have reservations about consulting one young in years, who had posted the sign above office door, ‘Small fevers gratefully accepted’.

10.

Bud Abbot and Lou Costello were discussing an actor they knew. “Nice guy,” Abbot was sure, “but have you noticed how he always let his friend pick up the dinner check?”

Yes,” replied Costello, “ he has a terrible impediment in his reach.”

11.

Sir W.S. Gilbert, of Gilbert and Sullivan duo, was noted for his waspish tongue. Once when a player urged his untalented mistress on Gilbert for a star part, Gilbert turned to his friend to observe: “This fellow is obviously trying to blow his own strumpet.”

12.

Groucho Marx on the Alps: Ah the Alps. I love the Alps so does God , because God alps them that alps themselves.”

13.

While interviewing a Chinese boy in his radio show, Groucho was told that he was 24. ‘In years or in yen,’ asked Groucho. When the boy answered with a straight face one doesn’t count age in yen, the comic replied, ‘Oh no? I have a yen to be 21 again.’

14.

A Professor of Greek once tore his suit and took it to a tailor named Acidopolus from Athens. The tailor looked at the tear and asked,’Euripdes?’

‘Yes,’ replied the professor,’Eumenides?’

(Ack: Cailyn Coffin quoted by Bennet Cerf-

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Ernest Lubitsch

The primary conflict in his films battle between sexual attraction and the particular state of being of individuals as part of society. An individual has a social position that pulls him in a certain way whereas his sexual attractions might direct him in another. Forbidden Paradise,Cluny Brown,

The Love Parade, Merry Widow and the Student Prince.

In films like Marriage Circle,Lady Windermere’s Fan,So This is Paris,One HourWith You,Angels the character felt their marriages and desires coming in conflict. In Ninotchka and To Be or Not to Be political beliefs pull one way,passion another. In Trouble in Paradise the thief finds his vocation coming in the way of desire.

He simply handled the explosive subject of sex in such ironic and clever ways to take all the passion out of it and turn sex as in the matter of intellect. He could in his silent films convey while shooting of two persons in the same room how they felt for one another with the agency of inanimate articles buttons,mirrors, gloves or hats. Whereas in his sexual comedy he made the sound track and the picture work in opposition. In The Love Parade Maurice Chevalier tells a risque anecdote-if the camera stays outside a window and reveals him telling about an incident that we cannot hear we make up in imagination the words he must be saying. In Merry Widow we see Chevalier and Jeannette MacDonald at a cafe table and the camera doesn’t stray below the table and is above the table cover and on them. Only MacDonalds,’Stop that’,and ‘Don’t do that’ inform us what is going on beneath the table. What we cannot see is left for us to imagine. In the film Angel Lubitsch conveys the essential yet delicate information that the Grand Duchess’ ‘salon’ is merely an euphemism for brothel. He doesn’t show customers or girls working there but he manages to treat an explosive subject without unduly drawing attention to it. He flouted the silly Hollywood Code whenever necessary. Lubitsch showed that sex was merely one kind of an activity between the extreme views advocated by Hollywood: sex destroys or Sex is nonexistent.

compiler:benny

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