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My Daling Clementine

Posted: April 25th, 2007, 6:06 pm
by ken123
I can't counts the Many ways that I love this John Ford Directed epic about The Gunfight at OK Corral. Highy fictionalized, but highly entertaining . :)

Posted: April 26th, 2007, 8:21 am
by movieman1957
I think the DVD had a good idea in showing the way Zanuck released it and the way Ford wanted it released. Good commentary too.

Posted: April 26th, 2007, 12:44 pm
by MissGoddess
I am very, very impressed with this film upon each viewing. It is like watching a series of paintings---portraits really, as opposed to a plain 'ol movie. I get the same reaction as to a Hogarth scene.

Henry Fonda is not my favorite actor, though I admire him. However, Ford makes me actually like him, as he is in character, and to see him in three-dimensions, as few other directors were able to do with the man. I never would have dreamed he'd make such a good choice for such a role. Physically, I mean. In no other director's hands, were Fonda's gestures, gait and they ways he used his body ever used to such effect.

I know of no director today who knows so well how to use a performer's idiosyncratic mannerisms to reveal character.

Miss G

Posted: April 26th, 2007, 12:46 pm
by ken123
Miss Goddess,
A great post ! :)

Posted: April 26th, 2007, 2:22 pm
by MissGoddess
It's a great topic, Ken. :o

Posted: December 12th, 2007, 12:02 pm
by ken123
Last night TCM showed the Zanuck approved version of this great Western film, Ford's pre - release version is the one that should have been shown, it is the better of the two IMHO. :wink:

Posted: December 12th, 2007, 12:26 pm
by MissGoddess
I was asleep so I missed it. I agree, especially because of the way the music was edited, that Ford's version is the better.

Posted: December 12th, 2007, 1:57 pm
by jdb1
Once again I must play contrarian, and say that this is another highly touted film I just can't get into. I don't know why - it just leaves me cold. Partly, I suppose, because westerns aren't really my favorite genre; but there are other Ford films I like much better.

Ah, well, as we say in Brooklyn: de gustibus non est disputandum.

Posted: December 12th, 2007, 2:23 pm
by Jezebel38
I'm not fond of westerns either - although I've watched most all of the old standby's. I had put off seeing this one for years, and was amazed to find myself impressed by this film. A lot has to do with what MissG said earlier in the thread about watching a series of paintings - exactly what impressed me about the visuals. It seemed very noirish for a western, and I liked Fonda's and Mature's character portrayal's - not so much Linda Darnell, though. And Walter Brennan - wow, incredibly mean and nasty! This is the only western I can say I really like.

Posted: December 12th, 2007, 2:40 pm
by mrsl
I've always put off seeing this since the first time about 100 years ago because I have never been a fan of Victure Mature. Unfortunately, my memory served me because he ruins the movie for me. I can't think of him as anything but a greasy hoodlum type, and it's not only this movie, the same goes for the one with Lana Turner and Clark Gabel and so many others featuring him.


Posted: December 14th, 2007, 8:01 am
by Mr. Arkadin
I enjoy My Darling Clementine very much. It has moments of poetic grace and outright hilarity. All the actors work well in the film, especially Mature whose acting skills as Anne noted are very hit or miss. His Doc Holiday is defintely struck with an inner turmoil that is largely missed or overacted in many subsequent versions of the film.

Definitely Mature

Posted: December 17th, 2007, 10:35 am
by Alan K.
...a greasy hoodlum type,
I think that's an unfortunate choice of words particularly in reference to Victor Mature. Mature became typed to some extent as a hunk in sword and sandal epics during the 1950's, but he was a extremely underrated actor.

Even though as Doc Holliday, he was tubercular, " a Kodiak bear", Mature brought an unsettled characterization to the role that was strikingly effective.

Victor Mature's best films were the Fox crime noirs of the 1940's, Kiss of Death and Cry of the City . He alternately played a star-crossed gangster trying to reform for the sake of his family and a working class copper who had to go after a boyhood chum gone bad.

Mature also had a great sense of humor about himself and his screen image. Take a peek at his last film, After the Fox (1966)- really funny.

I met him once when he was golfing, enjoying his retirement in Rancho Santa Fe near San Diego. Very nice guy.

Posted: December 17th, 2007, 11:27 am
by moira finnie
I think that one of the pleasures of My Darling Clementine is Victor Mature's performance. His doomed, reflective character is a fascinating and pivotal counterpoint to Henry Fonda's spare, somewhat unsophisticated Wyatt Earp. Mature's Holliday is, in a sense, a man without a country, who has made a conscious decision to turn his back on life, hope, and, in the form of Cathy Downs, love. The South that made him has disappeared in the Civil War, and he has plunged into his illness, violence and alcoholism with a vengeance. His character is painted in dark colors, but I think it is a marvelous performance. I especially like the conflicted pride he still takes in his native sense of chivalry and education, evident in his courtly but occasionally condescending treatment of the prostitute Chihuahua (Linda Darnell). This is quite telling in the scene when he stands when she comes up to him and Earp in the theatre, and also brusquely corrects the adoring girl's grammar with some impatience. I particularly like the scene in the barroom when Doc Holliday (Mature) insists that the drunken actor (Alan Mowbray, who's terrific in a small part), be given a measure of respect while he attempts to declaim a Shakespearean soliloquy, which Mature eloquently concludes for the poor Granville Thorndyke character. I think that Anne might be responding to the palpable sense of unhealthiness projected by Victor Mature in this part. He is sick in both body and soul, and only a few others seem to be able to see his ragged nobility as well.

Given a good script and truly sensitive direction from a master such as John Ford, Mature proves his acting ability, as he did working with Henry Hathaway in Kiss of Death and Robert Siodmak in Cry of the City.

Unlike many other actors, he was quick to disparage his own acting, and was not above some hilarious self-parody, even before After the Fox, (check out 1954's Betrayed sometime for a sly performance by the actor as a Dutch underground leader called...(dramatic pause)...'The Scarf'!) I like him more because of of his ability to laugh at himself. I wonder if, like his Doc Holliday character, he didn't want people to see that he really cared?

Posted: December 17th, 2007, 11:38 am
by MissGoddess
Nice words about a Mature actor. I like him the better for his self-deprecating humor, too. His looks may not appeal to everyone, but I do think he could act and I prefer him in dramas and noir as opposed to the Fox musicals he did.

More Mature Humor

Posted: December 17th, 2007, 2:05 pm
by Alan K.
A friend who knew Victor Mature told me this one:

Mature and Jim Backus were appearing in Androcles and the Lion (1952) at RKO and walked across the street to Lucy's for lunch and libations. Both actors were in full Roman costume; armor, prop swords, ostrich feathers, etc.

The hostess at Lucy's was disinclined to seat them, saying "We can't serve you guys dressed like this..."

Mature drew himself up and responded: "What's the matter? You don't want to serve members of the Armed Forces?"