Saturday, December 19, 2009

I Take This Woman (1940)

I wanted to see this movie for Verree Teasdale, in my opinion she is probably the best actress to never become a star, heck, she rarely had a leading role, but she stole every movie she was in and this movie is a prime example. Spencer Tracy and Hedy Lamarr are the stars here, yet I challenge anyone to argue that they were better than Verree. But what to my surprise, in the scene towards the beginning when Hedy goes back to her old modeling place to talk to Verree, is miss Natalie Moorhead, working in the store, and she even gets a few lines. Wow, I didn’t know she was in this movie when I saw it in September, I think this may have been the moment I decided to start my research. This is from the rare time when she became a brunette, blonde or brunette she is always gorgeous to me.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Letter of Introduction (1938)

Not much to say about this movie, I really enjoyed it, but Natalie had a very small role. The story is about a father and daughter who never met, the father is a Broadway star, and the daughter is hoping to get on Broadway. The father is planning to get married to his forth wife, when is long lost daughter shows up, they both try to hide from others who they are, and his wife to be thinks he’s cheating on her. Natalie small role is of a woman who sees the father and daughter having dinner together and she calls the wife to be to tell her what’s going on. Not much, only a few seconds, but it was worth it, Natalie was a brunette this time, not the platinum blonde she always was, kind of a shock, but she was still very beautiful, it’s a shame she couldn’t have more scenes, but this is towards to end of her career. The great Adophe Menjou plays the father, Eve Arden has a small role, and Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy have a small role, other than that, the others in the picture are new to me.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Shadow of the Law (1930)

Finally I get another movie with Natalie Moorhead as a main character, and yet she is not in the movie enough, but like always she made the best of what she had. This movie’s only real star is the great William Powell, and you can’t go wrong with him. The basic plot is William Powell is an engineer whose apartment is invaded by a woman (Natalie Moorhead) from an upstairs apartment, who is running away from a drunken man and he tries to protect her and fights the man, who accidentally falls out the window to his death. The man was angry with Natalie because he saw her with William who as the movie starts must have been out together earlier that night. The woman disappears, and she is William’s only witness, and he is sent to jail. He escapes jail and soon becomes the manager of a textile mill. He has been trying to find Natalie so he can be cleared and be set free and not in hiding, and marry the mill owner’s daughter. When he finds Natalie she tries to blackmail him, but of course we get a happy ending. Natalie does a great job in the early scenes, and we are lead to believe she is innocent. But when she is first confronted about coming clean about the accident, you can tell she is lying, the whole thing as a set up. It’s hard to hate her, but she seems to always play a villain, how can you root against this beautiful woman.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Parlor, Bedroom and Bath (1931)

Oh this was great fun, just a typical crazy, funny Buster Keaton movie, with a fantastic cast. First of course is the always funny Buster Keaton, then you got Reginald Denny, he is always great, he’s been is some of my favorite movies like “Kiki” and “Madam Satan”. Then throw in the funny and beautiful Sally Eilers, Joan Peers, Dorothy Christy and of course Natalie Moorhead. Natalie has a small part, as one of the women supposedly in love with Buster Keaton. The basic plot is Reginald Denny and Sally Eilers want to get married but they can’t until Sally’s older sister(Dorothy Christy) gets married, Reginald finds this shy guy(Buster) and tries to make him out to be this great ladies man, and Dorothy quickly falls for him. Natalie comes into the picture after reading the lies in the papers saying her and Buster were seen together at a club, and to prove Buster is not the guy Dorothy thinks he is. All kinds of typical Buster Keaton stuff happens, a lot of fun slap stick stuff, just an all out riot. I love the scene in the hotel room where after Buster gets lessons on how to make love to a women, he tries it out on every woman who comes into the room, great stuff! Be sure to check this movie out, you won’t stop laughing for a minute.

The whole movie can be seen on the web at this link

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Natalie Moorhead cheesecake photo

Why do they call these old swimsuit photos cheesecake photos, I don’t get it? Where did that name come from? I purchased this really great book last year called “Hollywood Cheesecake” by Madison Lacy and Don Morgan, which has hundreds of great cheesecake photos from the 20’s to the 50’s, some really great shots of some of Hollywood’s most beautiful woman. It’s fun to see how the bathing suits changed from the 20’s to the bikinis of the 50’s to present day, what people used to think was revealing, women wear everyday now, oh how times change. But of course on page 119 there she is, Natalie Moorhead, sadly a small photo, I would love to see the real 8x10, what a beautiful woman, oh and she was a great actress too.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Vintage News Article 1930

Here is a little vintage news article from the Pittsburgh Post Gazette from December 31, 1930.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

The Benson Murder Case (1930)

Sadly my copy of this movie isn’t very good, but this is all I have, I don’t think TCM has ever shown it, and it’s not commercially available, so you get what you can get. Natalie had a somewhat major role this time, William Powell is the only real star in this movie, the others are all about the same. This one of William Powell’s many “Philo Vance” movies, much like the “Thin Man” series, fun little whodunits. William Powell is my hero, he is always so cool, always looks cool, so sly yet elegant, and he gets all the good looking ladies, what a lucky man. Just think of all the beautiful women he got to make love to (on screen of course, then again some off screen too), Marion Davies, Bebe Daniels, Evelyn Brent, Ruth Chatterton, Jean Arthur, Fay Wray, Carole Lombard, Wynne Gibson, Joan Crawford, Kay Francis, Joan Blondell, Myrna Loy, Verree Teasdale, Jean Harlow, Hedy Lamarr, Lauren Bacall, Jean Harlow and of course Natalie Moorhead, I would trade places with him any day. Natalie has a few scenes and she makes the most of them, she is dressed in great early 30’s clothes, very sexy and chic. She plays Fanny Del Roy who has a secret and is of course one of the many suspects in the Benson murder, for a while I was sure she was the murderer, but in the end she was innocent. All the suspects lost money in the stock market, and Mr. Benson was their stockbroker, Natalie wanted her jewel case back that she gave Mr. Benson as collateral, there was something special in that jewel case and it wasn’t the pearls. This movie was fun, a great mix of mystery and comedy, adding Eugene Pallette in the cast was great, he is always funny, I really want a better copy, Natalie and William Powell work great together, I can’t wait to watch “Shadow of the Law” another Moorhead and Powell movie.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Illicit (1931)

Another small but important role as the “other woman” in this ok movie starring a young Barbara Stanwyck. Natalie plays “Margie True“, the woman has always been in love with Barbara’s husband “Dick“, the three are all friends, but when the couple’s marriage gets a little tired, they start seeing other people and the husband starts seeing Natalie. All kinds of trouble start, and Natalie confronts Barbara about her love for Dick, and that she plans to run away with him if she doesn’t love him anymore. Dick plans to go abroad with Margie, but at the last minute returns to Barbara and the makeup and live happily ever after. Natalie makes the most of her few scenes, like usual she looks great and plays the role very well, to bad my copy is pretty rough. Natalie may have never been a big star but she got to play along side some of the greats, like this one with Barbara Stanwyck, she also got the work with William Powell, Clark Gable, Joan Crawford, Bebe Daniels, Hedy Lamarr, Spencer Tracy, Jean Harlow, John Wayne, Lewis Stone, Buster Keaton, and even the Little Rascals.

Monday, November 9, 2009

What Becomes of the Children? (1936)

This was a very interesting movie to say the least, it shows us that some things never change, but it has a very unrealistic ending. Sadly I don’t have this movie on DVD, and I would love to have a copy, I saw this on the Internet Archive site, what an awesome site. This is one of the few movies Natalie gets to star in, well ok, maybe she isn’t the lead, but a very major character. The story is about a Boston tycoon who dreams of building the “Great American Railway” while his family is falling apart. His wife(Natalie Moorhead) spends all her time on social endeavors, leaving the caring and love of their children to their nanny. The children seek the love and attention of their parents but they are never there. While the two are out the kids sneak out of bed to play hide and seek, the daughter falls down the dumbwaiter and is hurt. When the parents rush home they blame each other, and they soon file for divorce, the daughter goes with the mom, and the son goes with the father. A few years on, The father’s dream of his great railway is happening, while his son gets kicked out of another college, the daughter leads a similar rebellious life, while the mother runs off for a vacation in Europe. The kids get into all kinds of problems, then they both get caught up in a murder rap, the parents rush to help them and of course the kids get off when the real murderer is found. The whole family is back together and the parents agree they made a mistake, and they still love each other and they all live happily ever after. Yeah right, not a very believable ending, but it’s a movie that tries to show parents what could happen if they don’t care and love their children. For the most part the acting is sub par, it’s not a great movie, but I thought Natalie did a great job, she looks great, and for a low budget company she wears some great clothes, it’s just great to see her in a bigger role with more than one little line.

You can watch the FULL movie at this link