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Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Dave Parker still believes he should be in Hall of Fame

Yeah…and I still believe I should be reviewing sizzlin’ punk 45’s for the New York Rocker’s Disques Du’ Mondo column.

“I figure I was the most dominant player through my era,” he said. “I’m not in the Hall of Fame, but all the Hall of Famers know what I brought to the table. My numbers are as good as most Hall of Famers who went in over the last five or six years. I just hope I get in while I’m vertical.”

...The knock on Parker most likely dates to his part in a drug scandal. He testified against a dealer in court and was fined by Major League Baseball for his admitted to using drugs, including cocaine.

“I was a recreational user,” Parker said. “I never had a problem where I needed to be rehabilitated. In that situation, I was the biggest name there. They went after me more so than other players. Everybody knew the same guy. It’s just that I was Dave Parker. It happened. I got over it. I’m glad to see some of the guys who had problems recover from their problems. We went through that cocaine era. I’m glad that it’s done.”

If Parker is to get into the Hall of Fame now, he’ll have to rely on the Veterans Committee to give him another look in the years ahead.

“As time goes by, the less it means to me because I did everything possible,” Parker said. “I played the game the way it should be played. I played hard. I never missed a plane, never missed a game. I don’t know what it is. They talk about baseball being forgiving and society being forgiving. Well, forgive me and let me be where I need to be.”

Repoz Posted: July 26, 2011 at 11:22 AM | 196 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: hall of fame, history, pirates, reds

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   101. Fred Lynn Nolan Ryan Sweeney Agonistes Posted: July 27, 2011 at 04:44 AM (#3886235)
But at her best, she's a striking physical presence.

It's weird: I think she had a great figure, but I still don't feel that Sex Goddess vibe. That affected breathy thing is mighty off-putting.
   102. Morty Causa Posted: July 27, 2011 at 04:45 AM (#3886236)
I strongly doubt coke has a negative effect on production, except to the extent that it causes work/eating habits to fade. Gooden's performance, for example, suffered from an arm injury, not cocaine use. Strawberry seemed to play well. Molitor. Hernandez.


You don't think something that has a direct negative effect on work and eating habits will have an eventual effect on an athlete's performance?
   103. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 27, 2011 at 04:53 AM (#3886241)
Pirates and Braves in the top of the 17th tied at 3.

Prado is 0-8. That's... gotta hurt.
   104. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 27, 2011 at 04:53 AM (#3886242)
Marilyn, given her lifestyle and habits, sometimes didn't look as good as other times.

But at her best, she's a striking physical presence.


She's not even in the top 30. The discussion of female beauty / sexuality in film begins and ends with Louise Brooks. Of course since she was only in two or three films that really displayed her talent, she kind of slips under the radar with most people. But it's hard to believe that anyone who's seen Pandora's Box, Diary of a Lost Girl, and Prix de Beauté would ever disagree.

Of course this may be somewhat subjective, but WTH, it's still objectively true.
   105. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 27, 2011 at 05:10 AM (#3886254)
Andy, she looks like Jack Lemmon in drag. Please with this.
   106. DCW3 Posted: July 27, 2011 at 05:17 AM (#3886256)
And here's where I call bullsh!t on WAR. In those six years, Parker made three All-Star teams, won two Silver Sluggers, and got MVP votes three times (5th in '86, 11th in '89, and 16th in '90). OK, so he was below average on defense. No way the average MLB team had a replacement option in their organization available that was capable of running off +0.3 WAR on Parker during those years.

What drives Parker below replacement level over those six years is his final season in 1991, where he had 541 PAs with an 81 OPS+, exclusively as a DH. WAR has him at -1.4 that year; I don't think it should be controversial that that season was worse than useless. From 1986 to 1990 he was worth 1.1 WAR, which is still pretty bad, but he had an OBP-light 108 OPS+ over that span, largely as a DH, with terrible basestealing numbers and, at least according to TZ, terrible defense when he did play the field. That's not all that valuable.
   107. Sam M. Posted: July 27, 2011 at 05:24 AM (#3886263)
The most beautiful woman ever filmed on screen was Ingrid Bergman as she was in Casablanca. The scene in Rick's in which we first see her, backlit, is simply stunning. It is no wonder that Rick has loved her since Paris, that the most sincere thing Renault says in the whole film is that it is a gross understatement that Ilsa is the most beautiful woman ever to come to Casablanca, and that she represents the great sacrifice Rick makes at the end of the movie to make the whole damn point of the thing.

Never has a woman's sheer beauty been more transcendent or integral to a film.
   108. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 27, 2011 at 05:49 AM (#3886273)
I nominate Kate Beckinsale.
   109. Greg K Posted: July 27, 2011 at 05:56 AM (#3886283)
I nominate Kate Beckinsale.

Really? She seems ok, but I have a hard time imagining anyone writing a parapgrah like #107 about her.

EDIT: though I shouldn't talk, my nomination would probably be Winona Ryder, which would probably get even less support.
   110. cardsfanboy Posted: July 27, 2011 at 06:29 AM (#3886295)
though I shouldn't talk, my nomination would probably be Winona Ryder, which would probably get even less support.


I second that. (she's my age, first beauty my age I had a crush on as a girl and watched her become a gorgeous women and had just enough craziness mixed with intelligence to make her even more attractive)

What drives Parker below replacement level over those six years is his final season in 1991, where he had 541 PAs with an 81 OPS+, exclusively as a DH. WAR has him at -1.4 that year; I don't think it should be controversial that that season was worse than useless. From 1986 to 1990 he was worth 1.1 WAR, which is still pretty bad, but he had an OBP-light 108 OPS+ over that span, largely as a DH, with terrible basestealing numbers and, at least according to TZ, terrible defense when he did play the field. That's not all that valuable.


There is also the matter of the year(1986) where he played every single game, hit 31 homeruns, led the league in total bases, finished 5th in the MVP vote and still managed to post a cumulative seasonal war of .1. (I understand why it happens, but man if someone had to defend war against an attack, this is one of those seasons that you hope the other person doesn't know about)
   111. Morty Causa Posted: July 27, 2011 at 06:48 AM (#3886299)
It's weird: I think she had a great figure, but I still don't feel that Sex Goddess vibe. That affected breathy thing is mighty off-putting.


I sense where you're coming from. She's not my favorite--not by a long shot, but I do think she's an original. Thus, my admiration is qualified. And except for a couple of stills, I don't think she's that beautiful or sexy. But she is distinctive. I think she created a persona that played on beautiful and sexy, but it's more like she's projecting an image, and in many cases caricaturing, some idea of feminine pulchritude, rather than actually being that. And people respond to that--to what she's so obviously playing with rather than the actual thing she's projecting as an image. And in movies like Niagara, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, and Some Like It Hot, she was quite successful, I thought. But, too often, as Pauline Kael said of somebody (Cyd Charisse?), it seems that she's learned her lines phonetically. That short-circuits any emotional connection to her performance. That very thing, though, sometimes works to her advantage in comedy. I think she's lived on for one big wrong reason mainly--as the victimology poster child of unthinking, reflexive tinhorn feminism.
   112. Morty Causa Posted: July 27, 2011 at 07:16 AM (#3886300)
She's not even in the top 30. The discussion of female beauty / sexuality in film begins and ends with Louise Brooks.


Maybe it's the fading libido that comes with age, but catalog or poster perfect beauty doesn't appeal to me as much as a distinctive appearance does. Jane Greer in Out of the Past. Maureen O'Sullivan in Hideout. Miriam Hopkins in Woman Chases Man. Veronica Lake in Sullivan's Travels. Kay Francis in Trouble in Paradise. Gene Tierney in Laura and Heaven Can Wait. Merle Oberon in The Divorce of Lady X. Maureen O'Hara in The Quiet Man (color) and How Green Was My Valley (B&W). I like some expressive quality, not just mannequin-like beauty. Marilyn's sweet vulnerability in The Asphalt Jungle is very appealing.

Never has a woman's sheer beauty been more transcendent or integral to a film.


I'm not sure I ever scoped it out in exactly that way. Yes, Bergman in Casablanca (and Saratoga Trunk--in fact, she has wonderful line in this movie where someone compliments her on her breathtaking beauty: "Yes, isn't it lucky?") is almost unbearably beautiful--it helps make you feel Bogart's anguish at his loss of her.
   113. Fred Lynn Nolan Ryan Sweeney Agonistes Posted: July 27, 2011 at 07:26 AM (#3886301)
I keep thinking I was at a Giants game where Parker put one into the upper deck at Candlestick.
Could this be right? Anybody remember something like this? It was during his Reds years.

EDIT:
She's not my favorite--not by a long shot, but I do think she's an original.

She got a lot of her mannerisms from Shelley Winters, who was kind of bizarrely hot at the time - the breathy thing, the open-mouthed smile.
   114. The NeverEnding Torii (oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh) Posted: July 27, 2011 at 10:08 AM (#3886308)
I remember Dave Parker as the guy who was traded to the Angels for Dante Bichette when I was 11 or 12. It annoyed me mostly just because I liked the name "Dante Bichette" and IIRC, Bichette had just had a fairly decent 1990. Based on the local newspapers and the heckling I heard around me at Angel games at that time, I gathered that Parker used to be really good but now he was a big, fat old guy that fit right in with all the past-their-prime Angel players of that era. Thanks for the memories, Dave. You didn't suck as hard as Gary Gaetti during your time with the Angels, so you'll always have that going for you.

EDIT: Just looked up their B-Ref pages and Gary Gaetti had more career HRs than Parker. Wow, I never would have guessed that.
   115. Ron J Posted: July 27, 2011 at 11:15 AM (#3886313)
#55 It's somewhat misleading to use career ERAs. Weighted seaonal ERA would work better. Koufax for instance comes out as a 2.25 ERA pitcher in his 4 playoff seasons. (To be clear, I know the others should see a drop in their ERAs as well. Probably by at least as much as Koufax)

And while Koufax had a pretty big home/road split in the regular seaon (his career ERA in Dodger Stadium was 1.38), his playoff success isn't built on this.
   116. Ron J Posted: July 27, 2011 at 11:25 AM (#3886317)
#99 Bill James had a throw-away bit where he speculates that it's the coming off the coke that seems to hurt performance. To the list of players mentioned James added Lonnie Smith and Darrell Porter (and probably others -- I can't find the comment right now) as players who had their best years while abusing substances. And there are probably plenty more. The Baseball Guides of the early 80s are full of drug bust stories.

EDIT:

Uberroth attempted to discipline the 23 players and 1 coach named in the Curtis Strong case. Joaquim Andujar, Dale Berra, Enos Cabell, Keith Hernandez, Jeff Leonard, Dave Parker and Lonnie Smith were (among other things) ordered to donate 10% of their salary to charity or they'd be suspended for a year.

Same for Al Holland, Lee Lacy, Larry Sorenson and Claudell Washington (except it was "only" 5%)

Dusty Baker, Gary Matthews, Tim Raines, Vida Blue, Dickie Noles, Daryl Sconiers, Manny Sarmiento, Derrel Thomas, Alan Wiggins and Rod Scurry were required to agree to random drug testing for the rest of their careers.

All clubs were forbidden from dealing with John Milner and Uberroth deferred judgement against Mike Norris -- who was facing criminal charges.

Kind of a mixed bag. Dusty Baker is the name everybody forgets.
   117. Jeff R., P***y Mainlander Posted: July 27, 2011 at 11:51 AM (#3886320)
EDIT: Just looked up their B-Ref pages and Gary Gaetti had more career HRs than Parker. Wow, I never would have guessed that.


It still shocks me that Gaetti had a 20-year career. He was a good defender, but man he had some sucky years.
   118. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 27, 2011 at 11:51 AM (#3886321)
[Marilyn Monroe]'s not even in the top 30. The discussion of female beauty / sexuality in film begins and ends with Louise Brooks.

Maybe it's the fading libido that comes with age, but catalog or poster perfect beauty doesn't appeal to me as much as a distinctive appearance does.


I'd say it's a distinctive appearance plus a distinctive personality, and Louise Brooks had that combination to go with the "poster perfect beauty". OTOH I'm assuming that most people haven't seen her films, so if they have no idea what she projects on the screen then I can understand the skepticism. Unfortunately, the copyright police limit what's available on YouTube, and the few clips from her films that are on there are overlaid with a variety of godawful modern sound tracks that totally mislead you as to what the real thing is like.

Jane Greer in Out of the Past. Maureen O'Sullivan in Hideout. Miriam Hopkins in Woman Chases Man. Veronica Lake in Sullivan's Travels. Kay Francis in Trouble in Paradise. Gene Tierney in Laura and Heaven Can Wait. Merle Oberon in The Divorce of Lady X. Maureen O'Hara in The Quiet Man (color) and How Green Was My Valley (B&W). I like some expressive quality, not just mannequin-like beauty. Marilyn's sweet vulnerability in The Asphalt Jungle is very appealing.

I agree with you about the ones there that I've seen (Greer, Lake, Francis, Tierney, and Monroe in The Asphalt Jungle and Don't Bother to Knock), and I could add Loretta Young in any one of half a dozen movies, Rita Hayworth in Gilda, Bergman in Casablanca, Stanwyck in The Lady Eve, Abbey Lincoln in Nothing But a Man, and probably a few dozen others, including even non-beauties like Ryder, Juliette Lewis and Lotte Lenya. Of course it's all subjective, but to this day there's never been a more stunning combination of beauty and screen persona to match that of Louise Brooks. I could trot out a small mountain of present day critics who've said as such after having seen Pandora's Box or Diary of a Lost Girl, but they're only confirming what the filmgoer's eyes can see for himself---and I don't mean by just looking at her photograph. She was a unique combination of beauty queen, nymphomaniac and innocent, whose off-screen character was also probably more perfectly aligned with her screen persona than any actress in history.

Monroe was certainly an original, and in a less constricted film era might have had better material to take advantage of whatever talent she had. She's "better looking" than Harlow, but the Catholic Church-driven "morality" of the 50's never would have allowed movies like Red Headed Woman off the cutting room floor, so in a sense it's unfair to judge Monroe by her less than spectacular body of work.

-----------------------------------

The most beautiful woman ever filmed on screen was Ingrid Bergman as she was in Casablanca. The scene in Rick's in which we first see her, backlit, is simply stunning. It is no wonder that Rick has loved her since Paris, that the most sincere thing Renault says in the whole film is that it is a gross understatement that Ilsa is the most beautiful woman ever to come to Casablanca, and that she represents the great sacrifice Rick makes at the end of the movie to make the whole damn point of the thing.

Never has a woman's sheer beauty been more transcendent or integral to a film.


For beauty combined with "character" in the traditional sense of being on the side of Good and Right, I wouldn't argue with that. But perhaps for that very reason, she never "looked" that good in any other role.

-----------------------------------

though I shouldn't talk, my nomination would probably be Winona Ryder, which would probably get even less support.


I second that. (she's my age, first beauty my age I had a crush on as a girl and watched her become a gorgeous women and had just enough craziness mixed with intelligence to make her even more attractive)

That's a good description of what any sane man looks for in a woman, and Wynona Ryder certainly would qualify if the local jails allowed for enough conjugal visits. Even in her androgynous roles like the chain smoking taxi driver in Jarmusch's classic Night on Earth, you could see glimpses of her underlying appeal.

-----------------------------------

I nominate Kate Beckinsale.

Never heard of her.
   119. AROM Posted: July 27, 2011 at 12:24 PM (#3886331)
"There is also the matter of the year(1986) where he played every single game, hit 31 homeruns, led the league in total bases, finished 5th in the MVP vote and still managed to post a cumulative seasonal war of .1. (I understand why it happens, but man if someone had to defend war against an attack, this is one of those seasons that you hope the other person doesn't know about)"

I'd only need some video footage of the whale trying to play right field.

Grich, I didn't think Parker was worth Bichette, though at the time I wasn't very high on Dante anyway. My biggest problem with the deal is that they choose Parker over Brian Downing. What a moronic disaster that was.
   120. AROM Posted: July 27, 2011 at 12:28 PM (#3886335)
"There is also the matter of the year(1986) where he played every single game, hit 31 homeruns, led the league in total bases, finished 5th in the MVP vote and still managed to post a cumulative seasonal war of .1. (I understand why it happens, but man if someone had to defend war against an attack, this is one of those seasons that you hope the other person doesn't know about)"

I'd only need some video footage of the whale trying to play right field.

Grich, I didn't think Parker was worth Bichette, though at the time I wasn't very high on Dante anyway. My biggest problem with the deal is that they choose Parker over Brian Downing. What a moronic disaster that was.
   121. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: July 27, 2011 at 01:25 PM (#3886367)
She probably wouldn't be at the very top of my list, but I also like Kate Beckinsale.

In The Last Days of Disco, she uttered one of the best zings ever. When one of her friends was puzzled by a 60s sociological reference she made, she cleared it up by explaining, with nary a hint of irony: "You know, the Woodstock generation of the 1960s that were so full of themselves and conceited?"
   122. GuyM Posted: July 27, 2011 at 01:25 PM (#3886368)
The most beautiful woman ever filmed on screen was Ingrid Bergman as she was in Casablanca.

I can't really argue with that. But I would also put Julie Christie as Lara high on my list.
   123. simon bedford Posted: July 27, 2011 at 01:36 PM (#3886374)
I agree with alot of these choices, Christie was always a fave since "Billy Liar", but I would like to add Audrey Hepburn to the list.
   124. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: July 27, 2011 at 02:51 PM (#3886432)
I nominate Kate Beckinsale.

Never heard of her.


You need to watch more horror films.

WRT M. Monroe- just before my time, I've seen some of her films, and didn't get it then and don't get it now. To each his own I guess, to each generation it's own I guess.
   125. Chris Fluit Posted: July 27, 2011 at 02:53 PM (#3886433)
I'm amused that both the Concepcion-for-HoF and Parker-for-HoF threads have devolved into arguments about Jack Morris.
   126. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: July 27, 2011 at 03:09 PM (#3886447)
The discussion of female beauty / sexuality in film begins and ends with Louise Brooks.


That Clara Bow ripoff?
   127. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 27, 2011 at 03:16 PM (#3886455)
I nominate Kate Beckinsale.


Never heard of her.

You need to watch more horror films.


I seriously doubt this dubious proposition. I get my fill of horror just thinking about John Boehner.

WRT M. Monroe- just before my time, I've seen some of her films, and didn't get it then and don't get it now. To each his own I guess, to each generation it's own I guess.

The subjectivity part I agree with, and I'm not much of a Monroe fan at all, but if you only stick to your own "generation" in anything to guide your opinions, you're going to miss out on an awful lot.
   128. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: July 27, 2011 at 03:22 PM (#3886462)
I'm amused that both the Concepcion-for-HoF and Parker-for-HoF threads have devolved into arguments about Jack Morris.

Yeah, the one devolved quickly and devolved further into what I'd said about Morris.

All before I showed up, rendering the psychotic obsessive ... me.
   129. SoSH U at work Posted: July 27, 2011 at 03:25 PM (#3886466)
The subjectivity part I agree with, and I'm not much of a Monroe fan at all, but if you only stick to your own "generation" in anything to guide your opinions, you're going to miss out on an awful lot.


Wise words from the guy who's never heard of Kate Beckinsale.
   130. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 27, 2011 at 03:27 PM (#3886470)
The discussion of female beauty / sexuality in film begins and ends with Louise Brooks.

That Clara Bow ripoff?


Uh, not quite, but if you look at one of Bow's last films, Call Her Savage, you can see why lots of people think that Hollywood completely screwed up the careers of both of these amazingly talented and sexy women. The baseball equivalent would have been if the Red Sox had decided to convert Roger Clemens into a closer or if Tony LaRussa had made Albert Pujols into a pinch hitter. Call Her Savage is the closest thing that any American film has ever come to portraying the raw female sexuality of Louise Brooks in Pandora's Box, but even in that great Bow film they had to stick on a contrived "happy" ending. Fortunately G.W. Pabst was under no such outside pressures.
   131. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 27, 2011 at 03:36 PM (#3886482)
The subjectivity part I agree with, and I'm not much of a Monroe fan at all, but if you only stick to your own "generation" in anything to guide your opinions, you're going to miss out on an awful lot.

Wise words from the guy who's never heard of Kate Beckinsale.


Yeah, that's a fair comeback, but serious question: Where does she generally rank in a list of today's actresses? Is she a real talent or just another generic blonde who looks like she stepped off a Cosmopolitan cover?

P.S. For the past few days this site has been as slow to load as it's been in many years, and since that's not the case with any other site, I don't think it's just my browser. This is also the third time it's gone down completely in that same period, even though it hasn't been for long.
   132. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: July 27, 2011 at 03:37 PM (#3886483)
I can see both Clara Bow and Louise Brooks. MM never did much for me. I can't begin to see how Barbara Stanwyck was ever seen as sexy or alluring.
   133. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: July 27, 2011 at 03:38 PM (#3886486)
Yeah, that's a fair comeback, but serious question: Where does she generally rank in a list of today's actresses? Is she a real talent or just another generic blonde who looks like she stepped off a Cosmopolitan cover?

She's a small-chested brunette (**) with real talent.

(**) At least she was. I've lost track.
   134. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: July 27, 2011 at 03:42 PM (#3886491)
just another generic blonde


now you're just shitting us
   135. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: July 27, 2011 at 03:42 PM (#3886493)
That got past the nanny?
   136. Greg K Posted: July 27, 2011 at 03:44 PM (#3886495)
Yeah, that's a fair comeback, but serious question: Where does she generally rank in a list of today's actresses? Is she a real talent or just another generic blonde who looks like she stepped off a Cosmopolitan cover?

As I said earlier, I don't think she's anything special.

But honest question, I know you and Morty wax poetical about the dames of yester-year, who among the present (or recent) generations would you single out? (I really don't mean it as a "gotcha" question. I'm curious to get an "outsiders" perspective so to speak)
   137. CrosbyBird Posted: July 27, 2011 at 04:01 PM (#3886517)
Kate Beckinsale

That last picture is the best one. I think she is more attractive than any of the other women linked in this thread, or at least that modern style is such that she has the most attractive combination of raw physical beauty and presentation of that beauty.

I can't really pick a "most beautiful woman," though. I see jaw-droppingly beautiful women just on the street.
   138. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: July 27, 2011 at 04:05 PM (#3886522)
Andy, she looks like Jack Lemmon in drag. Please with this.

Come on now, that's not fair! I've known some outstanding lemons!

Also I agree with you on Kate Beckensale. Hawt.
   139. dlf Posted: July 27, 2011 at 04:09 PM (#3886528)
When I was 8, I had a crush on Melissa Gilbert from Little House on the Prairie. As I approached puberty, Christie Brinkley was THE Swimsuit model to fantasize about (with a tip of the hat to Kathy Ireland). Historically, I can't argue with Bergman in Casablanca, but when Lauren Bacall seductively tells Bogey how to whistle in To Have and Have Not, my libido was jump started.
   140. Morty Causa Posted: July 27, 2011 at 04:16 PM (#3886533)
Yeah, Bacall's tenure as sex bomb was short (really just a few years in the forties) but she was something really distinctive.
   141. base ball chick Posted: July 27, 2011 at 04:36 PM (#3886554)
as for how parker thinks he should be in cooperstown now, i understand because i happen to think that i should be in coperstown right now too.

trouble is that parker won't buy his ticket and i can't AFFORD my ticket

- and it is always interesting to hear youse guys talk about who you think is hot/beautiful. (good thing for 99.99999% of us that you got LOTS of different opinions) i read something on some guy's website (i forget who but he's one of those The Game guys who thinks that all women LIKE to be treated like shtt and that every man should treat all women that way - also that females shouldn't be allowed to go to skool/work because we are not smart enuf - but i digress) about how the makeup, face shape and eye shape of actresses who are thought to be beautiful/sexy in 2010 are a bit different than like 1940 - he compared (i think) olivia dehavilland to megan fox - that men now prefer higher cheekbones and less rounded eyes and faces than they did 70 years ago

what i notice is that Back Then the "beauties" like loretta young/ merle oberon also - not sure how to put this - seemed a lot more helpless and not able to do anything or think anything beyond what to wear. sure there were other women but rosalind russell and katherine hepburn weren't looked at (best i can tell) as beauties. they weren't UGLY but not beauties. also there seemed to be a LOT of 22 year old females with 45+ year old men

i saw like a 10 minute section of a louise brooks movie and i know what andy is talkin about - she just manages to say - so there boy, you man enuf, hunh??? without taking off clothes or talking about anything that would SAY that.
   142. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: July 27, 2011 at 04:52 PM (#3886580)
No movie thread can pass without an RIP to the great G.D. Spradlin. From the coach in North Dallas Forty, to the general who sent Willard on his mission to terminate Kurtz's command in Apocalypse Now, to Senator Geary in Two, no one ever played faceless, corrupt, and hypocritical authority -- in other words, postwar American authority -- better.
   143. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 27, 2011 at 04:56 PM (#3886585)
I can see both Clara Bow and Louise Brooks. MM never did much for me. I can't begin to see how Barbara Stanwyck was ever seen as sexy or alluring.

YMMV I guess, but you must never have seen Baby Face, Ladies They Talk About, The Lady Eve, or any one of dozens of other movies of hers. She wasn't the classic beauty, but she was enough of one that when you added the rest of the package, you weren't lacking much.

-----------------------------

just another generic blonde

now you're just shitting us


Not at all. The first photo I saw of her was this. Not bleached, but "dirty blond" isn't that far off. How else would you describe it?

-----------------------------

But honest question, I know you and Morty wax poetical about the dames of yester-year, who among the present (or recent) generations would you single out? (I really don't mean it as a "gotcha" question. I'm curious to get an "outsiders" perspective so to speak)

Honest answer: I don't really know enough of them to give a remotely fair opinion. But from my extremely limited knowledge, I'd go with Angelina Jolie for pure looks, though the young Helena Bonham-Carter would be right up there, too, as well as the young Annabella Sciorra and the young Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio. As they used to say in certain places before inflation set in, any one of them could get thirty.

But for a combination of one time looks (30 years ago), intelligence, and force of character, I'd take Judy Davis hands down. I never did go much for the bimbo types to begin with.

-----------------------------

I can't really pick a "most beautiful woman," though. I see jaw-droppingly beautiful women just on the street.

That's probably the truest statement written so far in this sub-thread.

-----------------------------

Yeah, Bacall's tenure as sex bomb was short (really just a few years in the forties) but she was something really distinctive.

Bacall was done in by the same combination of 50's permanent wave hairstyles and 50's stupid movies that ruined many other actresses of her generation as well. The 40's were partially rescued by the noir genre, but by the 50's Hollywood women had been reduced to little more than decoration, and their roles in American movies haven't really improved all that much since then. Obviously there were some exceptions (Susan Hayward, Ida Lupino and the later Stanwyck among them), but just to compare Monroe's roles to those given to Jean Harlow 20 or 30 years earlier tells the story right there. Monroe was the first Playmate of the Month, and that was pretty much all she was as far as Hollywood was concerned, another great blessing bestowed on us by the Catholic Church with their meddling into everyone's business.
   144. JL Posted: July 27, 2011 at 05:05 PM (#3886595)
when Lauren Bacall seductively tells Bogey how to whistle in To Have and Have Not, my libido was jump started.

This.

Also add my vote for Grace Kelly.
   145. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 27, 2011 at 05:18 PM (#3886624)
what i notice is that Back Then the "beauties" like loretta young/ merle oberon also - not sure how to put this - seemed a lot more helpless and not able to do anything or think anything beyond what to wear.

Lisa, you're basing that Loretta Young take on her later movies. But try Born to Be Bad for a sample of what she was capable of before the censors took over. In that movie she was a single mother who raised her boy to play con games in the street in order to get by, and then threw herself at Clark Gable in order to get her son back when the courts took away her custody. Try to imagine Richard Pryor with the nanny hovering over his performances in a helicopter, and you'll get an idea of what Hollywood did to its actresses after the middle of 1934. One of the great appeals of the silent era movies for many people, and especially the movies of pre-Hitler Germany, is that the movies then often portrayed far more honest representations of real life and real emotions than the candied up crap so often spoonfed to audiences in later years with old goats like Cooper and Chevalier playing opposite women young enough to be their daughters.

-----------------------------

sure there were other women but rosalind russell and katherine hepburn weren't looked at (best i can tell) as beauties. they weren't UGLY but not beauties. also there seemed to be a LOT of 22 year old females with 45+ year old men

That sort of May / December pairup only came along in the 50's when Hollywood couldn't figure out what to do with their graying male stars like Stewart, Cooper and Gable. In the 30's the leading women always wound up with men their own age, and it was taken for granted that this was the only natural relationship.
   146. Eddo Posted: July 27, 2011 at 05:22 PM (#3886632)
All-time: young Liz Taylor (think Cat on a Hot Tin Roof). Stunning. (Though Bergman in Casablanca is also sheer beauty.)

Now: for me, Mila Kunis (think Forgetting Sarah Marshall, or the ads for that new movie she's in (Friends With Benefits?)).
   147. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: July 27, 2011 at 05:31 PM (#3886654)
Kunis definitely wasn't repulsive in Black Swan, which I finished watching yesterday.

Speaking of which, I see Winona Ryder was mentioned a few posts back. Didn't realize she was in the movie till I saw the credits. Either someone did a helluva makeup job, or she's had a really rough few years. Or both.
   148. Steve Treder Posted: July 27, 2011 at 05:53 PM (#3886699)
I keep thinking I was at a Giants game where Parker put one into the upper deck at Candlestick.
Could this be right? Anybody remember something like this? It was during his Reds years.


Could well be true. The right field upper deck (definitely not left or center) was within range of big strong LHBs. Hell, I remember watching Johnny Edwards put one up there one time.
   149. base ball chick Posted: July 27, 2011 at 06:23 PM (#3886743)
Jolly Old St. Neck Wound, Moral Idiot Posted: July 27, 2011 at 01:18 PM (#3886624)

what i notice is that Back Then the "beauties" like loretta young/ merle oberon also - not sure how to put this - seemed a lot more helpless and not able to do anything or think anything beyond what to wear.

Lisa, you're basing that Loretta Young take on her later movies. But try Born to Be Bad for a sample of what she was capable of before the censors took over. In that movie she was a single mother who raised her boy to play con games in the street in order to get by, and then threw herself at Clark Gable in order to get her son back when the courts took away her custody.



- i actually did see one old movie with barbara stanwyck like before the code - i hardly recognized her - but she was a woman who, um, social climbed with a body part that was not hands, feet or, uh, voice you know what i'm sayin. and it was QUITE obvious she was not A Woman Of Great Moral Virtue.

i saw this after you had first talked about precode movies and i was VERY surprised - i didn't know that they used to keep it real. i was thinking about fred and ginger where ginger is a working girl but has a giant penthouse apartment and unbelieveably expensive clothes and somehow this is how dancing teachers (and not the lap dancing kind neither) live
   150. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: July 27, 2011 at 06:40 PM (#3886767)
This.

Also add my vote for Grace Kelly.


Hitchcock had pretty good taste in his leading women
   151. Morty Causa Posted: July 27, 2011 at 06:44 PM (#3886771)
I don't really know who are the hot-looking babes in movies now, since I don't watch contemporary films and haven't for going on about 25 years. (You can't have it all.) A lot of those named, though are real beauties, but that's not all I look for. There has to be more than textbook looks--or I'd rank Rita or Ava ahead of Stanwyck or Davis or K. Hepburn (and I don't include any of these in a discussion of screen beauties--to do that with them seems both irrelevant and impertinent). I agree with CrosbyBird--there are sweet little things I see every day at Target's or Wal-Marts or my local UL baseball game that just break this old man's heart. What I look for is a combination of looks and expression--an a host of attitudes, character and mien coordinated with "beauty". Masturbatory fodder or calendar art you can find all over. I assent to that, but that's not what's solely memorable about great and famous actresses. It's just a component, and not at all the supervening one.
   152. Greg K Posted: July 27, 2011 at 06:49 PM (#3886777)
Speaking of which, I see Winona Ryder was mentioned a few posts back. Didn't realize she was in the movie till I saw the credits. Either someone did a helluva makeup job, or she's had a really rough few years. Or both.

That's sad to hear. The last I saw her was in "The Last Word" and "The Darwin Awards". Truly awful movies (well I guess The Last Word was surprisingly mediocre) but she looked like she was making a rebound in the gorgeous department.

Still can't compare to her glory days though.

For the most disappointing moment of your life, check out the special features on the Heathers DVD. The original ending as proposed by the director included a scene where a naked Winona Ryder sits in a chair fondling a gun. They display this to you through a written script on the screen you can scroll through. If deleted scenes ever served a purpose surely this should be it!!!!
   153. Greg K Posted: July 27, 2011 at 06:53 PM (#3886786)
What I look for is a combination of looks and expression--an a host of attitudes, character and mien coordinated with "beauty". Masturbatory fodder or calendar art you can find all over. I assent to that, but that's not what's solely memorable about great and famous actresses. It's just a component, and not at all the supervening one

I think this sums up my feelings on a woman that was mentioned earlier (I think by Andy?). If you were to just see a still of Helena Bonham-Carter (I'm thinking Howard's End era) you might not be blown away, but the way she moves and talks to men I find simply insane.

I liked "Conversations with Other Women" more than a rational person should just because the movie is literally just her and Aaron Eckhart talking for 90 minutes.
   154. Morty Causa Posted: July 27, 2011 at 06:54 PM (#3886787)
Hitchcock had pretty good taste in his leading women


He sure did--and the best had a style, an attitude, not just strictly looks.
   155. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 27, 2011 at 06:54 PM (#3886789)
- i actually did see one old movie with barbara stanwyck like before the code - i hardly recognized her - but she was a woman who, um, social climbed with a body part that was not hands, feet or, uh, voice you know what i'm sayin. and it was QUITE obvious she was not A Woman Of Great Moral Virtue.

That was probably Baby Face, which you can see pretty much fits your description. And right at the beginning of this excerpt you can also see one of the rare roles written for an African American actress (Theresa Harris) that didn't lend itself to a pancake ad tie-in.

i saw this after you had first talked about precode movies and i was VERY surprised - i didn't know that they used to keep it real. i was thinking about fred and ginger where ginger is a working girl but has a giant penthouse apartment and unbelievably expensive clothes and somehow this is how dancing teachers (and not the lap dancing kind neither) live

Yeah, Fred and Ginger were never my cup of tea, either. Plenty of talent and a bit of snappy G-rated dialogue, but after a while once you've seen one tap dance routine you've seen em all.
   156. Morty Causa Posted: July 27, 2011 at 06:56 PM (#3886795)
   157. Greg K Posted: July 27, 2011 at 07:23 PM (#3886829)





Appealing with artful wiles, that's Stanwyck here as she reams out Henry Fonda

Hey, this Sturges dude totally ripped off Starter for 10, starting at 8:00.

Also this movie stars another of the present generations budding young ladies, Rebecca Hall (sadly not pictured in this scene)
   158. Fred Lynn Nolan Ryan Sweeney Agonistes Posted: July 27, 2011 at 07:29 PM (#3886835)
she was a woman who, um, social climbed with a body part that was not hands, feet or, uh, voice you know what i'm sayin.

Legend has it, this was true of Grace Kelly as well. Which for some reason I find more funny/awesome than anything else.
   159. Morty Causa Posted: July 27, 2011 at 07:41 PM (#3886844)
Yeah, Fred and Ginger were never my cup of tea, either. Plenty of talent, but after a while once you've seen one tap dance routine you've seen em all.


I can't let that slide (and I think I'm being baited). George Balanchine didn't think Astaire was just a tap dancer, and the best Astaire/Rogers films are first-rate screwball comedies, that happen to also contain much of a half-century of America's songbook to boot, but what the hey--I can be derisively dismissive about hackneyed pre-code melodrama. Screwball, romantic comedy, and musical comedy (and later some noir), however, comprise most of what's distinctive about America's classic movie period. It's mostly what's unique about American movies period when compared to foreign films, however throbbing with seriousness and portent those French/Japanese/Indian/Swedish/British/German films may be. It's what they couldn't imitate. It's why American movies in the golden age are unique. Pre-code soaps? They don't add much. All cultures have that. That's mostly par for the course. They're the Snicker's bar of a culture's accomplishment. Good but hardly unforgettable.
   160. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 27, 2011 at 07:49 PM (#3886852)
No movie thread can pass without an RIP to the great G.D. Spradlin. From the coach in North Dallas Forty, to the general who sent Willard on his mission to terminate Kurtz's command in Apocalypse Now, to Senator Geary in Two, no one ever played faceless, corrupt, and hypocritical authority -- in other words, postwar American authority -- better.


Drat. Didn't realize he had died.

Don't forget his lone Columbo appearance, circa 1979, playing the murderer Ruth Gordon's attorney. She played an author.

(I love it how in tv shows, the attorney who drafted up a publishing contract is also magically the person's criminal attorney and real estate attorney and tax attorney and divorce attorney. In short, the lawyer is just the person's "attorney." Um, no.)
   161. Morty Causa Posted: July 27, 2011 at 07:51 PM (#3886855)
   162. cardsfanboy Posted: July 27, 2011 at 08:02 PM (#3886875)
(I love it how in tv shows, the attorney who drafted up a publishing contract is also magically the person's criminal attorney and real estate attorney and tax attorney and divorce attorney. In short, the lawyer is just the person's "attorney." Um, no.)


How long has specialization been really going on. I understand separating between criminal and 'business' attorney, but it seems somewhat overkill to specialize beyond that(in the past, as more attorneys got degrees, more specialization ended up happening, just like in actual useful professions to society like doctors, scientist, and trash collection) but in the 70's was specialization among attorneys as hyper as it is now?
   163. Greg K Posted: July 27, 2011 at 08:16 PM (#3886898)
It probably has more to do with shows and movies not really feeling like paying 4 or 5 more actors to fill out the necessary lawyer roles just to satisfy the 0.5% of their audience that are lawyers worried about what sounds the cat-bone xylophone is making.
   164. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: July 27, 2011 at 08:22 PM (#3886907)
Masturbatory fodder or calendar art you can find all over. I assent to that, but that's not what's solely memorable about great and famous actresses. It's just a component, and not at all the supervening one.


I look at some actresses as simply being actors (Judi Dench, Kate Blanchett, Meryl Streep, Kathy Bates, recent Mary McDonnell) and some I see as, well, people I like to look at (Kate Beckinsale :-), Anne Hathaway, young Mary McDonnell...)
   165. Los Angeles El Hombre de Anaheim Posted: July 27, 2011 at 08:38 PM (#3886923)
Yeah, Fred and Ginger were never my cup of tea, either. Plenty of talent, but after a while once you've seen one tap dance routine you've seen em all.

I can't let that slide (and I think I'm being baited). George Balanchine didn't think Astaire was just a tap dancer, and the best Astaire/Rogers films are first-rate screwball comedies, that happen to also contain much of a half-century of America's songbook to boot
I'm with Morty on this. American comedies have gone from Top Hat to The Hangover, and I can't say that's an improvement. Besides, Astaire's dancing is worth it. I've seen (I think) all of his dancing films, and he's always doing something different, trying something new. He's not just a great dancer, but he owns an amazing presence on screen.

As for screen beauties, I'll cast votes for Catherine Zeta-Jones and Catherine Deneuve.
   166. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: July 27, 2011 at 08:41 PM (#3886927)
I look at some actresses as simply being actors (Judi Dench, Kate Blanchett, Meryl Streep, Kathy Bates, recent Mary McDonnell) and some I see as, well, people I like to look at (Kate Beckinsale :-), Anne Hathaway, young Mary McDonnell...)

I was going to go with "Accomplished" as my name for the former, several of whom I also like to look at. Kristin Scott Thomas and Olivia Williams would be two of my charter members.
   167. Morty Causa Posted: July 27, 2011 at 08:51 PM (#3886934)
Damn, in modern (post-1960) terms, how can the magnificent Deneuve not be a contender? And she's allowed herself to be used by some quality directors to great effect.
   168. Morty Causa Posted: July 27, 2011 at 08:59 PM (#3886947)
If this is just mere tap dancing....

Powell is a real horse--the only woman musical-dance star who had the power to stay toe to toe with the men. But note the otherworldly finesse of Astaire. He adds little touches on just about every other step, and his parts of his entire body are doing things. He's dancing with, out, and in-between the music, mixing it up, all making it seem effortless and extemporaneous. Hey, if you can't appreciate this--give it up--as Sinatra says in his introduction, you can sit around and hope for this to happen again, but it ain't likely. I like the flourish of Powell's dress at the end--it's like it had been left behind and had to catch up with them in a breathless finish.
   169. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 27, 2011 at 09:00 PM (#3886948)
Yeah, Fred and Ginger were never my cup of tea, either. Plenty of talent, but after a while once you've seen one tap dance routine you've seen em all.

I can't let that slide (and I think I'm being baited). George Balanchine didn't think Astaire was just a tap dancer, and the best Astaire/Rogers films are first-rate screwball comedies, that happen to also contain much of a half-century of America's songbook to boot, but what the hey--I can be derisively dismissive about hackneyed pre-code melodrama. Screwball, romantic comedy, and musical comedy (and later some noir), however, comprise most of what's distinctive about America's classic movie period. It's mostly what's unique about American movies period when compared to foreign films, however throbbing with seriousness and portent those French/Japanese/Indian/Swedish/British/German films may be. It's what they couldn't imitate. It's why American movies in the golden age are unique. Pre-code soaps? They don't add much. All cultures have that. That's mostly par for the course. They're the Snicker's bar of a culture's accomplishment. Good but hardly unforgettable.


No baiting, Morty, and you know I respect your encyclopedic knowledge of the movies of the period. I value your input and take it seriously.

All that I was expressing is a simple YMMV opinion. I love plenty of those Breen era movies, including lots of screwballs, nearly all of the noirs, many of the dramas (including some of the soaps), and even a musical or three.** It's just that in way too many of them I find the overall atmosphere totally oppressive, especially when I know that so many of the participants themselves felt exactly the same way.

The silents and the pre-codes had their formulas, too, but the best of them---and there were many---breathed an air of life that couldn't possibly be duplicated with the Catholic Church (AKA Joe Breen) looking over everyone's shoulder. There's nothing in the code era that REMOTELY compares to those Brooks movies, or to the best pre-code films like some of the Stanwycks and the Harlows (etc.), and all because the filmmakers themselves were so often subservient to their censorship board masters. Not that you don't know this already.

That's not to say that there aren't plenty of code era movies that are just as good in their own way, and there's something to be said for sublimation and indirectness---when it doesn't simply degenerate into wholesomeness for its own sake, as so often was the case during the Breen era. An actress like Katharine Hepburn was made for movies of sophisticated sublimation where everyone speaks in code, and she couldn't have flourished in any other era. But others without her verbal skills weren't so lucky.

My beef with Astaire and Rogers isn't with their acting skills, their dancing skills, or their often great repartee. I don't find their dialogue as compelling the pre-code clashes between (say) Crawford and some of her male oppressors or Shearer and her paramours, but that's purely opinion, and dueling Fred and Ginger can still be a delight in small doses.

OTOH in that last sentence the operative words for me are "small doses". And anyway, I've never been a dance fan in general, even if many of the songs that accompany them form much of the best of 20th century popular music. I'd just rather go with the CDs than the DVDs.

And I guess I'll always gravitate to many of the foreign movies for much the same reason I keep coming back to the silents and the pre-codes: There's a sheer rawness to them and a down to Earth quality that you can't possibly find in movies with Breen holding the whip over every scene, not just about sex but every bit as much about acceptable political and social themes.*** That so many code era films succeed anyway is a tribute to the power of adaptation and survival, and in some cases to the code's inefficiency, but on balance that era lost a hell of a lot more than it gained with its rigid censorship---not to mention what it did to stars such as Shearer and Loretta Young, who became shadows of their pre-code selves.

**The Garland version of A Star Is Born is way up there on my list of all-time great movies in any category, from the first scene to the last line, and everything in between. But that's in great part because in spite of the great songs, it's only incidentally a musical.

***I still defy anyone to find one Hollywood movie from about 1934 to 1959 that depicts religion, and the Catholic Church in particular, in anything but the most fawning way. Compare that to Stanwyck's scathing pre-code portrait of a religious charlatan in The Miracle Woman.
   170. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: July 27, 2011 at 09:19 PM (#3886959)
Jean Seberg was very attractive in Godard's Breathless.
   171. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 27, 2011 at 09:25 PM (#3886964)
I'm with Morty on this. American comedies have gone from Top Hat to The Hangover, and I can't say that's an improvement.

I guess at this point I should make myself clear: I don't like vulgarity for its own sake, or when it's purely gratuitous. For every post-code lowlife classic like Animal House, Tin Men, The War of the Roses, or the sublime Night on Earth, there are probably a hundred tenth rate imitators that are the cinematic equivalent of a whoopie cushion. But first rate comedy has always been a rare bird, no matter what the era, and all eras and countries have their share of the best of them.

EDIT: Thinking about that, here's a personal list of my favorite all-time comedies, in chronological order. It's of course purely subjective, YMMV to the core, and I probably just forgot about a few of them, especially some of the more recent ones. But what strikes me about it is the range of the release dates. Like I said, great comedy is always going to be with us.

The Gold Rush (1925)
Speedy (1928)
Sons of the Desert (1933)
Bombshell (1933)
It’s a Gift (1934)
Reefer Madness (1936) (obviously comedy of the unintentional sort)
Libeled Lady (1936)
Easy Living (1937)
Bringing Up Baby (1938)
The Women (1939)
The Great McGinty (1940)
The Lady Eve (1941)
The Sheep Has Five Legs (1952)
Dr. Strangelove (1964)
The Producers (1968)
Animal House (1977)
Tin Men (1987)
The War of the Roses (1989)
Night on Earth (1992)
   172. Fred Lynn Nolan Ryan Sweeney Agonistes Posted: July 27, 2011 at 09:32 PM (#3886971)
I'm with Morty on this. American comedies have gone from Top Hat to The Hangover, and I can't say that's an improvement. Besides, Astaire's dancing is worth it. I've seen (I think) all of his dancing films, and he's always doing something different, trying something new. He's not just a great dancer, but he owns an amazing presence on screen.

I'll just throw in that I like Astaire's singing a lot. He knew he didn't have much of a voice, so he just sang the songs, no messing around. Great rhythmic sense too, obviously.
   173. Los Angeles El Hombre de Anaheim Posted: July 27, 2011 at 09:40 PM (#3886977)
Astaire's singing is underrated. He was a favorite of both Gershwin's and Porter's because he could deliver a song straight, without any embellishments, and still make it live.
   174. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 27, 2011 at 09:43 PM (#3886982)
And one other thing I particularly like to remember about Astaire: He was apparently the greatest pool player in the history of Hollywood, even better than Gleason. That foot/eye coordination obviously extended as well to his hands.
   175. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: July 27, 2011 at 09:54 PM (#3886999)
EDIT: Thinking about that, here's a personal list of my favorite all-time comedies, in chronological order.


Not a single Marx Brothers effort? I knew you were suspect, now I have proof.
   176. base ball chick Posted: July 27, 2011 at 09:57 PM (#3887003)
andy

i LUUUUVVVVVV fred n ginger - fred could move his body like nobody else even when he was old. i don't never watch em for the dialogue - or for either of em singing - because they both suck at that. but the dancing - i NEVAH get tired of that

and i watch fred in other movies too - pretty much just HIS solo dancing. he was effing amazing

- i don't think most comedies these days are funny neither
problem with me is that what i think is funny is the old bugs bunny and can't nobody do bugs worth a darn
   177. Morty Causa Posted: July 27, 2011 at 10:07 PM (#3887013)
172 & 173:

Astaire is a fine singer. He was, supposedly, the favorite of Irving Berlin, Cole Porter, Jerome Kern, and maybe the Gershwins, too, I forget. Probably for the reasons that you state. He's very clear, very direct, keeps it simple--his range isn't the greatest, but he gets the most out of every note. He worked hard to make himself good at the singing, knowing it was the dancing that everyone wanted (and that he was really enthralled to). And he worked incredibly hard at his dancing of course--you wonder why this guy kept it up for so long. I mean, he started as a kid when he was five and then with his sister in an act before WWI, and he didn't completely stopped until he was 70 or more.
   178. Morty Causa Posted: July 27, 2011 at 10:14 PM (#3887020)
Jolly Old:

You're right. There’s just so much time. Thus, there will be some things you don’t have time for. I have to remind myself not to be too critical of them—that because I prefer one thing to another doesn’t mean I have to bad-mouth that which is second-place with me. I, myself, have never read a story by Henry James or William Faulkner that didn't genuinely affected me, even greatly touched me; yet, that has never instilled in me the slightest urge to seriously search out their work on my own and really immerse myself in it. I’m not sure why that is. OTOH, the first time I read, oh, say, Peter DeVries (or Thomas Berger, or John Fowles), I knew I couldn't rest until I read everything and then kept up with everything that followed. So, yes indeedy, YMMV.
   179. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: July 27, 2011 at 10:26 PM (#3887032)
Astaire? Can't sing. Can't act. Balding. Can dance a little.
   180. Morty Causa Posted: July 27, 2011 at 10:42 PM (#3887050)
I like all of Jolly Old's favorites above. I won't repeat his, for variety's sake if nothing else.

Some of my all-time comedy favorites:

1) Keaton's Seven Chances
2) Trouble in Paradise
3) Blessed Event
4) Duck Soup
5) Lady for a Day
6) Hands Across the Table
7) The Richest Girl in the World
8) The Awful Truth
9) Nothing Sacred
10) My Man Godfrey
11) His Girl Friday
12) The Shop Around the Corner
13) The Bank Dick
14) Sullivan's Travels
15) The More the Merrier
16) Heaven Can Wait (Lubitsch)
17) The Life and Death of Col. Blimp
18) Kind Hearts and Coronets
19) Our Man in Havana
20) Irma La Douce
21) How To Murder Your Wife
22) Take the Money and Run
23) Young Frankenstein
24) Raising Arizona
   181. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 27, 2011 at 10:51 PM (#3887060)
Not a single Marx Brothers effort? I knew you were suspect, now I have proof.

I said I may have left a few out, and one of them I accidentally omitted would be A Night at the Opera, in spite of those musical interludes with Allan Jones and Kitty Carlisle. The scene at the City Hall reception and the stateroom scene along put that one on my list.

------------------------

- i don't think most comedies these days are funny neither
problem with me is that what i think is funny is the old bugs bunny and can't nobody do bugs worth a darn


Lisa, take a little more than nine minutes from your busy schedule and savor this. There's never been a cartoon like it before or since, including the mighty Bugs Bunny. Or take a little less than nine minutes and try this, a 1935 Oscar winner. Everything associated with Disney these days is so impossible to separate from product tie-ins and corporate smarm that it's easy to forget that at one time Donald Duck was considered right up there with Charlie Chaplin as the greatest comic character in Hollywood, and deservedly so.
   182. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 27, 2011 at 10:57 PM (#3887066)
And one other thing I particularly like to remember about Astaire: He was apparently the greatest pool player in the history of Hollywood, even better than Gleason. That foot/eye coordination obviously extended as well to his hands.


Andy, how good are the best pool players? Do you think you -- after several decades of playing fairly seriously -- could give a top flight professional player a run for his money? Assuming you weren't going blind, I mean :-)

What makes a player top flight? Is it that they simply don't miss shots, even difficult ones? Or is it that they are able to do trick shots and the like, which gives them the edge?
   183. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 27, 2011 at 11:01 PM (#3887069)
Can't say I object to anything I've seen on that list, Morty, especially Lady for a Day and Kind Hearts and Coronets, and it reminds me of three more I accidentally omitted: His Girl Friday W.C. Fields's It's a Gift, and another movie in which he played in the key part, If I Had a Million (Part 1 and Part 2). And the "I bet you'd like to have a nose like that full of nickels, wouldn't you" line in The Bank Dick nearly puts that one up there all by itself, along with the "hearty handshake" that Fields got as his reward for "capturing" the bank robber.
   184. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: July 27, 2011 at 11:03 PM (#3887074)
Call Her Savage is the closest thing that any American film has ever come to portraying the raw female sexuality of Louise Brooks in Pandora's Box, but even in that great Bow film they had to stick on a contrived "happy" ending. Fortunately G.W. Pabst was under no such outside pressures.

Yeah, Pabst stuck on a contrived unhappy ending. I won't give it away in case anyone who hasn't seen "Pandora's Box" intends to do so, but it involves the convenient arrival of a special guest star.
   185. Morty Causa Posted: July 27, 2011 at 11:04 PM (#3887075)
BTW, JOLLY OLD, in Seven Chances, note the lawyer's secretary's page boy haircut near the beginning of the movie. Seems to pre-date Louise Brooks.
   186. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: July 27, 2011 at 11:05 PM (#3887076)
Not a single Marx Brothers effort? I knew you were suspect, now I have proof.

I said I may have left a few out,


Leaving out the Marx Brothers from a list of greatest film comedies is like leaving out Babe Ruth from a list of greatest baseball players. Omitting the Marx Brothers but including "Reefer Madness" would be like leaving out Babe Ruth but including Jose Canseco.
   187. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 27, 2011 at 11:22 PM (#3887090)
Andy, how good are the best pool players? Do you think you -- after several decades of playing fairly seriously -- could give a top flight professional player a run for his money? Assuming you weren't going blind, I mean :-)

Well, I've beaten every one of them I've played at least once or twice, but only playing races to five or seven in nine ball, where luck and a hot streak can take you over the finish line. But to gamble against any of them I'd need to be spotted what's known as "the ghost": All the breaks and then ball in hand on the subsequent shot. I can run out an open table pretty consistently, but the trick is getting that open table before your opponent does.

What makes a player top flight? Is it that they simply don't miss shots, even difficult ones? Or is it that they are able to do trick shots and the like, which gives them the edge?

Consistency, consistency, and did I mention consistency? I have the capability to make a table length draw shot with the best of them, but the difference is that half the time or more I'll miss the shot, while they'll miss it far less than that. And while I'll dog position at least once every few games, and screw up the rack, once the pros get a clear shot on an open table they'll run out 90% to 98% of the time. I can beat 99% of the players you'll ever see at a bar or a college game room, but against even a top regional player I'd be lucky to win one out of three games of nine ball, and in any game other than nine ball, where luck is much less of a factor, I might never win a game all day. These guys make it look so easy only because their skill level is so high that they always position the cue ball for easy shots. That's where mortals like me usually fall short.

And of course what also separates the really top players from the pretenders is that intangible quality known as "heart". The best players step up their game as the stakes increase, and the very best players can summon a reserve level to match anything that their opponent does. I've seen high stakes matches where both players have literally gone for hours on end without missing a makeable shot. A player like Efren "the Magician" Reyes or the younger Buddy Hall is every bit as talented in his own way as a Jack Nicklaus or a Tiger Woods.

And while trick shots are totally irrelevant per se, the stroke skill required to do those long trick draw shots (as opposed to the gimmick shots that require nothing more than setting the shot up properly) is of the highest possible level. A trick shot champion like Mike Massey isn't quite on the level of the top pros in traditional pool games, but he'd be capable of beating any of them if they were to lay down for a minute.
   188. Something Other Posted: July 27, 2011 at 11:46 PM (#3887126)
I've only skimmed the thread, but haven't seen it mentioned. Sure Parker had a nifty peak, but over his last 12 seasons he played 1588 games with an OPS+ of 109. That's a hell of a long time to be what I assume is lower than average for the positions of RF and DH. You don't have to care at all whether if Parker was bleeding cocaine out of his ears. To be that utterly mediocre for two-thirds of a career, you'd have to have Pujols' peak, and not Parker's, to get into the Hall.

Can anyone steer me towards how I'd get the data for OPS+ by position for those years?
   189. cardsfanboy Posted: July 27, 2011 at 11:55 PM (#3887133)
Can anyone steer me towards how I'd get the data for OPS+ by position for those years?

what do you mean by position for those years?

Individual seasons you can get it by going to the league, clicking on splits and scrolling down to defensive positions, you want to look at tOps.... You should decide if you want just the NL, or if you want MLB before going through the splits.

link to 1984 NL splits
   190. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 28, 2011 at 12:16 AM (#3887156)
Thanks, Andy. Interesting. So you'd have more of a chance in a game like 9-ball rather than 8-ball? And you would do better with 8-ball if you got to break and try to run out the table?

What would you say the peak age range for pool players is? I'm serious. Is it 20s-40s or a more narrow range than that? What's the oldest top player you've seen? The youngest?
   191. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 28, 2011 at 01:41 AM (#3887269)
Thanks, Andy. Interesting. So you'd have more of a chance in a game like 9-ball rather than 8-ball? And you would do better with 8-ball if you got to break and try to run out the table?

I wouldn't have a prayer in 8-ball because in 8-ball every time a pro didn't have a clear shot at running the table he'd snooker me to death. That's not as much of a factor in 9-ball because there are fewer balls on the table to hide the cue ball behind and the balls don't tend to cluster together after the break shot.

What would you say the peak age range for pool players is? I'm serious. Is it 20s-40s or a more narrow range than that? What's the oldest top player you've seen? The youngest?

I've seen pro level talent in players ranging from about 12 to 80 and even beyond, depending on the game. (Nine ball and ten ball at the younger end of the spectrum, one pocket and straight pool at the other end.) One of my truest athletic heroes (seriously) was a old time bookie who passed away about 10 years ago, who won the local weekly 9-ball tournament on his 80th birthday. It's not as if he won the U.S. Open, but in the local weekly tournaments in the DC/Baltimore area I play in there are always at least one or two players at or near the pro level, and sometimes as many as half a dozen. There aren't any handicaps, and he won the case game in the final match with a table length shot on the 9-ball that any pro of any age would have been proud to make. I've won a few dozen of these tournaments over the past 15-20 years after I started playing again, and one of the best things about the game is that it's one of the very few sports where a geezer like myself can compete (at least in short races) with top players of any age or skill level. It's a pure meritocracy where you either can run out or you can't, with no excuses and no BS.

All that aside, pool is still basically a young man's game, because of the stamina factor. The big tournaments often require players to play nearly continuously for up to 13 or 14 hours one day and then begin all over again the next,** on and on for up to a full week. And in a sport where a single mistake can often cause the loss of a match, that's a big disadvantage for older players. There are plenty of pros who are still competitive in their 50's, but the most consistent winners are usually in their 20's or 30's, just like in nearly every other sport.

**And high stakes gambling matches can often run up to 2 or 3 days of nearly non-stop pool. I love the game, but even when I was younger I refused to put myself through that sort of torture. 18 hours was pretty much my limit. After that you had the greenie and coke players, but all that ever did for them was to keep them awake for the next game; they could "performance-enhance" themselves into 90% efficiency for awhile, but that was strictly out of a self-generated necessity, and it was often like two punch-drunk fighters refusing to be the first one to throw in the towel.

And of course the root cause of this sort of insane behavior has always been the lack of real money in the game; I know several local pros who gross maybe $15,000-$40,000 a year while schlepping from one state to another, week after week, to compete for prizes of as little as $600 and literally live out of their cars in order to save on hotels. And yet if they had the same level of skill in golf as they do in pool they'd be grossing half a million to several million dollars a year. It makes me sick even to think about it, but then they're doing what they love, and they'll always have that. And hell, if I'd ever been able to reach that level of skill I might have very well been crazy enough to do it myself. It's very much like golf in that it's a sport that you can never really quit once it gets a hold of your imagination.
   192. Something Other Posted: July 28, 2011 at 02:49 AM (#3887330)
I've only skimmed the thread, but haven't seen it mentioned. Sure Parker had a nifty peak, but over his last 12 seasons he played 1588 games with an OPS+ of 109. That's a hell of a long time to be what I assume is lower than average for the positions of RF and DH. You don't have to care at all whether if Parker was bleeding cocaine out of his ears. To be that utterly mediocre for two-thirds of a career, you'd have to have Pujols' peak, and not Parker's, to get into the Hall.

Can anyone steer me towards how I'd get the data for OPS+ by position for those years?
   193. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: July 28, 2011 at 03:17 AM (#3887339)
Well that's weird.
   194. cardsfanboy Posted: July 28, 2011 at 03:30 AM (#3887344)
Can anyone steer me towards how I'd get the data for OPS+ by position for those years?


what did you want, does post 189 help or is there something else specific you want?
   195. Morty Causa Posted: July 28, 2011 at 05:59 AM (#3887379)
Ring Lardner's great baseball short story, Alibi Ike

Has a real good old-timey baseball flavor to it, and is funny as hell.
   196. Something Other Posted: July 28, 2011 at 09:00 AM (#3887398)
Thanks, cfb. Your original reply was exactly what I was looking for. Somehow I managed to double post three hours apart. Weird indeed.

I've often found Hollywood's women and magazine cover girls too mannish in the face. It may be that large, square faces show up better on camera, but for my money there aren't nearly enough of the softer, rounder Olivia deHaviland and Grace Kelly facial types

As for extraordinarily attractive women all around us--yup. I'm probably a pushover, but on a day when I'm out and around I'll fall in love at least a couple of times.
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