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, 26 May 2014

Sophia: Talking Pictures

BBC television here continues with their weekly series "Talking Pictures" 40-minute or so programmes where they show old interviews from their archives featuring various stars, followed by a film or two of the star in question. I have written about these before - the Dirk Bogarde one was particularly interesting with lots of interviews I had not seen before, and the Bette Davis and James Mason ones featured extracts from their National Film Theatre appearances in the '70s which had me in the audience, recorded over 40 years ago, I had not seen the recordings and had no idea I was in them. - as per NFT label.
This week's slot featured Paul Newman, with Robert Mitchum coming up next - but last Saturday it was Sophia Loren - particularly interesting after her making a splash at Cannes, see post below, Loren label - with that new film directed by her son, which led to lots of coverage in the papers of 79 year old Loren, 80 in September, as is Brigitte Bardot.
These interviews too were fascinating, dating back from 1958 - and including 1960s, 1979 (when I saw her in London), '80s and '90s, and I had not seen any of them before, showing the star's progress through the following decades, showing her poise and steely reserve when deflecting awkward questions, with that marvellous voice and humour. It included newsreel footage too, of her charity work, and that other Cannes Festival in 1962 where Sophia, Alain and Romy were the stars on show, below and as per other photos here. We now need to see her new film in London, with perhaps another Loren spectacular appearance. Come on, BFI!

EL CID followed, and this time I saw most of it with the sound off. It is after all one of my favourite films which I grew up with, and have seen many times, and have that special issue dvd with Scorsese's appreciation. Watching it without the sound or that great score, it played out like a great silent film - the images and emotions coming off the screen covering the story perfectly, with Heston as magisterial as ever and Sophia matching him and being his equal, and Anthony Mann's great visuals.

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