Last night I watched a wonderful short film called Hollywood My Home Town from comedic actor Ken Murray. When he first arrived in Hollywood in 1927 from his hometown of Kingston, New York. He explained at the beginning of the film that instead of sending postcards of Hollywood back to his family, he instead purchased a 16mm camera, filmed Hollywood stars many he didn’t even know at the time and sent the resulting film back to his family.
The result are charming views of the real life behind the scenes of the stars of the golden age of movies. Not staged like the movie tones he asked actors he knew and didn’t to take part in his home movies.
To me it is worth seeing for so many reasons. To see how they were back stage, on the lot, on location and vacation was a wonder. My favorite section was the part in 1927 seeing the trolley tracks down Hollywood Blvd is so cool. (Yes, there was a trolley in Los Angeles I kind of wish it was still there) Also to see people like Myrna Loy when they are young and just starting out was a bit of thrill for a fan like me.
Turner Classic Movies are showing the show this month so catch it for a classic movie treat 🙂
I have had a love of musicals since I was a little girl. This is the best of the film series because they show never before seen clips. Behind the scenes for the special effects and how shots were done back in the twenties and the thirties.
They had a really fascinating scene with dancer and actress Eleanor Powell that showed how they shot a famous dance sequence in the movie Broadway Melody of 1938. It showed how they had the curtains moving and the pianos moving and Eleanor dancing away. It is really fascinating.
Also they show how they shot Esther Williams in an underwater number for Jupiter’s Darling and she describes all the work it took for her to look so effortless.
Amazing outtakes of Judy Garland in ‘Annie Get Your Gun before she got so sick. You would never tell that she was about to have break down it is a dazzling performance.
The part touched my heart was the late great Gene Kelly who was always my favorite as a host. I have always admired him he was so talented and so down to earth. And there he was always the trooper. He was so sick, you could see it but he still did his job, still had that famous sparkle in his eye. It touched my heart.
If you’re a fan of the golden age of the musical and you want to know how they did the magic long before ILM and CGI, please watch it. It teaches you to respect the talent they came before our age.