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« Lee & Juan Interviewed by Kristyn Burtt on 'The Web Files' | Main | Movie Shout Out - Villian Transfer - Responses »
Tuesday
Sep012009

17 - Clean Up the Chicken Grease With 'Mildred Pierce'!

We've got a DOOZY of a show for you this week. 

Guest host Kristyn Burtt from The Web Files drops by to chat about the 1945 noir classic 'Mildred Pierce'!

This is Joan Crawford at her finest, and was the role that won her an Academy Award, but with his dislike of black and white cinema, did Lee like it?

Direct video episode download (195MB)

Direct audio episode download (16MB)

And once you're done watching us chat movies with Kristyn here, you can see us chat Web Series with Kristyn over at The Web Files!


Buy 'Mildred Pierce' on DVD!

Reader Comments (15)

Love the new page! You guys are great as always, and really like the crossover :)
Missed the airing of the movie yesterday, but will keep a eye out for it. Looking forward to the next episode

September 2, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDangershoes// Jeff

Fun episode! Glad Lee survived the black and white movie. I never got the answer though, has he ever seen "Grease"?
Thanks for having me on!
:) kb

PS Did I win the bet?

September 2, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterKB

Love the crossover episode with Kristyn Burtt. You three are hilarious in your review of "Mildred Pierce." For anyone who's never heard of it before, you just created a new fan base!

September 2, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSPwrite

Just finished watching. It's funny that the point of reference for Eve Arden's career is the principal from Grease, for my generation it was "Our Miss Brookes". I am glad that you enjoyed the movie. What I always think is interesting is the presentation of American middle class aspirations, what you all referred to as propaganda. This movie was made just after the war, but it was more influenced by the depression following the deep slump in '33. While the war was ending when this movie was being made, and people had money as a result of the huge wartime stimulus, there was nothing to buy because of shortages. No new cars were made for instance until the 46-47 model year. So the movie is still heavily influenced by the making do mentality while simultaneously yearning for the good life that was to finally hit full stride in the 50's. The character of Vita is particularly interesting to me. She encapsulates Mildred's desires for the elegant good life, that she probably dreamed up from watching Hollywood movies, while Kay is the more knockabout working class kinda kid. Vita is spiteful and hateful
and a good part of the credit goes to Anne Blythe's performance. That sneering curled lip conveys so much without even speaking. It's more than just being a spoiled kid. It's revulsion of the lower class. I think it's a great movie I'm glad that your friend Lee liked even despite it's complete lack of color.

September 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterBob B.

LOL. Yup. Bob, Eve's Grease character was the role that jumped out when I was skimming her IMDB. I'm putting 'Our Miss Brookes' on the list now. So far our main point of reference generationally is still pretty close to our age (or even a little younger now).
As for propaganda, maybe not too dissimilar, my point of reference being much more intimately tied to what's going on today. I think a lot of the conditions we face today parallel the great depression, but I wonder if the media bombardment we face today isn't a bit worse. Especially in terms of wealthy privileged people having incredible platforms to tell those of us in the middle and lower classes that we should work hard and sacrifice, but we can't have the same benefits and perks they themselves enjoy. Knowing some about the time period, but being so far removed from it, I wonder if they faced as much class resentment as we do today...

LOL. I wonder what metaphor is made with Kay's death then...

Lee's a constant trial. At least the last couple flicks I've made him watch he's enjoyed, so I have a little cred built up. That and I'm pretty sure he's putting some of that on for the camera. He is really persnickety sometimes...

Thanks for the comment!

September 16, 2009 | Registered CommenterMYMHM

The camera work that you mentioned in MP being much more dynamic than the filmed plays that were more common before. I wonder how much of that was the influence of Orson Welles? The influence of Citizen Kane and the Magnificent Ambersons was probably more far reaching than I had thought about. It probably gave a lot of directors and cinematographers the courage to do inventive camera work that was deemed too weird before Welles.

September 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterBob B.

Hey Bob!
I think this is true for American film makers, but I still think Metropolis probably did more to pave the way for modern cinemetography. Incredible camera work (even rudimentary tracking) sets AND locations, matte paintings, visual effects.
Citizen Kane is incredible, inventive, experimental, but I'm still amazed by how far ahead of the game Lang was.

September 16, 2009 | Registered CommenterMYMHM

Actually on further reflection your choice of the word propaganda was more accurate than I first thought. The media bombardment was less oppresive and far less sophisticated than it is now, just look at the naive advertising from the period. There was a lot of class resentment at that time, none of it is in Hollywood movies. The fact that the US avoided the kind of political upheavals that Europe went through can in some way probably be attributed to movies and their relentless we're all in this together shtick, when in fact we weren't. Every once in a while a movie like Grapes Of Wrath pops up, but even then there's no call for class revolution. Instead Shirley Temple on the Good Ship Lollipop and Ginger Rogers singing in piglatin in the Gold Diggers of '33 singing We're in the Money, in '33 no less, the low point of the Depression.

Good observation. I forgot about Lang and the rest of the German Expressionists. Like your friend Lee I also have biases, I don't really care for Silent Film. So, I thought about Wells, but forgot about the silents.

September 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterBob B.

Wow! I came here to say that I liked the movie and that Joan Crawford and Anne Blythe's performances were fantastic. But after reading the conversation with Bob B. I appreciate the film so much more. Other than being an older classic film I hadn't given much thought to what was happening at the time it was made. Thanks for bringing it to my attention!

September 22, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterYvonne

Bob's analysis is INCREDIBLE.
I think for a lot of people (especially my age and younger) overlook the depth of a lot those older films.
It's really interesting seeing what influenced a particular piece of media.

September 22, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJuan @ MYMHM

all right, I broke down + watched the whole thing -- my attention span likes Twitter ; ) -- fun (even if the movie doesn't sound it) + thorough...maybe I'll try another. Nice discussion of details. I love looking at the costumes + fabrics in black + white films -- they had to be careful w/ the patterns.

September 22, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterlonelypond

Welcome to the show LonelyPond!
We waffled back and forth on format for a LONG time. Both Lee and I came from a short form world, and finding a good balance of commentary and shenanigans takes a lot of work.
Thanks for checking it out!

September 22, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJuan @ MYMHM

Yes, tried another episode + it timed out well -- so good choice, plus I got through about a dozen rock elementals while listening...occasionally I need a switch from last.fming. How about catching my favorite fall movie sometime -- The Trouble With Harry?

September 22, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterlonelypond

LOL
Honestly I can't say we took Last.fm into consideration when shooting our show, but it works for me. "MYMHM - for when you're tired of Last.FM"

I'll add The Trouble With Harry to our list.

September 22, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJuan @ MYMHM

Hey it rhymes...consider it an early Christmas gift ; )

September 22, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterlonelypond

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