Wednesday, June 04, 2014

Look For the Silver Lining

I spent a sunny, hot morning eating breakfast, then dusting while watching Sally. This charming 1929 musical is a vehicle for Broadway darling Marilyn Miller. She was one of the most beloved stage stars of the 20s, making her film debut in an adaptation of her stage hit from 1920. Miller is the title character, an orphaned waitress who wants nothing more than to be a dancer. She gets a chance when she substitutes for a Russian woman at a fancy Long Island party. Joining her are former European nobleman Connie (Joe E. Brown) and the young man who lives at the mansion (Alexander Gray), who has a crush on you. Sally would give anything to make her dreams come true, but will her heart get broken in the process?

If you love early talkie musicals, this is a must-see. Miller's not much of an actress and is only a decent singer, but when she dances, she lights up the screen. This is well-demonstrated by the film's two best numbers, precursors to many a modern musical. Miller and Brown have a ball with a goofy dance duet to the show's best-known song, "Look For the Silver Lining." The movie was originally all-color, but most of the color footage is now lost, except for the majority of the "Wild Rose" dance number. Miller twirls with the chorus boys and looks far more vivacious than she does through the rest of the film.

Switched to a couple of early Looney Tunes as I quickly ate leftovers for lunch and got ready for work. "Smile, Darn Ya, Smile!" introduces both the Mickey Mouse imitation Foxy and one of Termite Terrace's signature songs. "The Booze Hangs High" is a Bosco short that has nothing to do with liquor - it's actually a farm yard-set music video. "Bosco's Picture Show" spoofs movies of the day, complete with a parody sing-a-long and newsreel.

Work wasn't too bad when I got in, but rush hour was a mess. It's the beginning of the month, with all the frequently annoying people that entails. Thankfully, my relief was on time, and I was able to buy eggs with no problems.

When I got home, I watched another Tales of the Gold Monkey episode while using the remaining two eggs from the last carton to make an omelet. Sarah, Jack, Corky, and Jake discover an "Ape Boy" raised by monkeys on a remote island when the Goose is downed in a storm. After the boy is captured by a zoologist and his men, the quartet race to the island of Makuta to rescue him.

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