Dedications: My four late friends Rory, Stan, Bryan, Jeff - shine on you crazy diamonds, they would have blogged too. Then theres Garry from Brisbane, Franco in Milan, Mike now in S.F. / my '60s-'80s gang: Ned & Joseph in Ireland; in England: Frank, Des, Guy, Clive, Joe & Joe, Ian, Ivan, Nick, David, Les, Stewart, the 3 Michaels / Catriona, Sally, Monica, Jean, Ella, Anne, Candie / and now: Daryl in N.Y., Jerry, John, Colin, Martin and Donal.

Monday, 30 December 2013

Malibu party people, 1965

Roddy McDowall's Home Movies
On another wet, windy, squally bad weather end of the year day, how nice to look back at May 1965, early summer in Malibu, and all those beach people enjoying themselves, in their preppy clothes - white slacks, stripey tops, swimwear, as we join Julie Andrews on the beach with a child, Lee Remick is here several times, also James Fox and Jane Fonda (they were filming THE CHASE at the time), also Natalie Wood, Robert Redford, Ruth Gordon with Garson Kanin (they were filming INSIDE DAISY CLOVER then with co-star Roddy McDowell). Look, there's Simone Signoret and Lauren Bacall (fabulous in yellow), both holding court, also Susanne Pleshette twice, Hayley Mills, Samantha Eggar, Tony Perkins, Tammy Grimes and more. (Lauren Bacall at left, with Lee Remick, right, looking out to sea).

Yes, its Roddy McDowall's home movies (22 in all, all quite short), which are now on YouTube. The links at the side (on YouTube) bring up some more fascinating clips, as we watch Paul Newman, Ben Gazzara, Kirk Douglas, George Cukor, John Frankenheimer, George Axelrod, Domonic Dunne,  and others at play. Malibu looks nice and unspoilt then - almost 50 years ago. We knew Roddy was still busy and popular then and knew everybody - like Rock Hudson and Dirk Bogarde they knew everybody and their home movies are a blast. (Above left, Simone Signoret, right - Lee Remick).

This might have been a quiet day at the beach for these co-stars and colleagues, mixing with their own - and the Hollywood gay set - at what seems a private occasion; no internet or cell phone photos or paparazzi then - just Roddy shooting his home movies. But here they are on YouTube almost 50 years later, capturing that perfect mid 60s summer, with so many in their prime. Lee Remick (left) for instance looks marvellous here, pity there's no sound with those lingering closeups. The Malibu beach-house looks nice and informal, but must have cost millions even then - let alone now. (Right: James Fox, with Signoret in background). Its such a contrast to today's shallow celebrity culture where people have to tweet everything they do and post pictures to prove it.

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