3rd Blog Anniversary + An Interview

Just discovered that today marks three years since I started blogging. The time has flown by. I cannot tell you how much you guys all mean to me. Thanks so much for your encouragement, friendship, comments, likes and support. ❤

Photo1939

Deborah heard it was my anniversary and brought flowers. 😁 Screenshot by me.

This year I haven’t been as active on here as I have been before. This is due to my health. I suffer from M.E. and have had it since my teens. To call this illness awful would be an understatement. It is debilitating.

In the last few years the symptoms have gotten much worse and the last two years have been particularly bad. I don’t have the strength to do much a lot of the time now. This is something that upsets and frustrates me greatly, but I try and make myself post something when I feel able to. I try and stop by your blogs as often I can. x

Here’s 3 posts from the last year that I’m quite proud of. Hope you enjoy reading them if you haven’t already. Callan  Crimson Peak   Taking A Walk Through The Dark Alleys Of Film Noir. Something that really made my year was when actress and author Carol Drinkwater agreed to be interviewed by yours truly. You can read this interview here. Thanks again, Carol!

At some point I hope to bring back the yearly Alfred Hitchcock Blogathon. I would also like to make the Noirathon a regular event too. If any of you lovelies would ever like to co-host any blogathons with me,please do get in touch. x I raise a glass to all of you. Thanks for making the last 3 years so wonderful. Recently I was interviewed myself by the Classic Movie Blog Association this was about my love for classic film. I hope you all enjoy reading the interview below. 
What sparked your interest in classic film? 
A combination of things really. I grew up during the 1990’s and watched many of the Disney animated classics such as The Jungle Book, Aladdin, Bambi on video. Those Disney classics were my first foray into film. Classic musicals including Singin’ In The Rain, The King And I and South Pacific came next, and I loved every second of them.
I was very interested in dance when I was little and one day my mum and dad brought me the video of the documentary That’s Dancing. That documentary not only introduced me to Fred and Ginger and The Nicholas Brothers, but also to lots of other classic stars and films. This documentary was what really got me exploring the work of different actors and seeing more films from that era.
Vernon and Irene castle

Fred and Ginger in The Story Of Vernon And Irene Castle. Image source IMDb

My dad is a big fan of John Wayne and he owned many of the Duke’s flicks on video. I would often sit and watch these films with him when I was little. El Dorado and True Grit have become great favourites of mine. In my teens and early twenties I started watching Hitchcock films, foreign language films and silent films. I’ve been a fan of the classics ever since. You can read my post about how I learnt to love Silent cinema here.
What film genre(s) do you favor?   
My regular followers already know how much I love Film Noir(yes I do consider it a genre rather than a style)and that it is my favourite/go to genre. I also really love romance, drama, thriller, comedy and horror.
You mention you are a big admirer of Sherlock Holmes. Which came first, the Arthur Conan Doyle stories or the films, and which actor is your favorite Holmes.
 
I do indeed! He’s such a fascinating character and is one of the few who has been taken to the hearts of readers and viewers and become a cultural icon. As someone who is on the Autistic Spectrum, I have also developed a great affection for Sherlock due to character traits and descriptions of him which seem to infer that he could well be on the spectrum himself.  I came to the stories and the Basil Rathbone film adaptations at more or less the same time actually. I love Basil in the role and he certainly looks the part.
                                           Basil and Jeremy as Holmes. Image source IMDb.
I thought that he was the definitive Holmes for some years, that is until I discovered the Jeremy Brett TV series and my opinion quickly changed. Jeremy IS Sherlock Holmes. He inhabited that role and brought the character to life in a way that I don’t think the other actors have ever managed to do. I recommend that series to all Holmes fans, although I have to say that I don’t think that the final season(The Memoirs)is anywhere near as good as the first three are.
 
What is your “go to” classic film when you need something to lift up your spirits?
It depends what I’m going through, but Some Like It Hot, or Audrey Hepburn films such as Roman Holiday or Paris When It Sizzles will usually do the trick. I’ll often watch old miniseries too. Anything with my beloved George Sanders and Cary Grant in can be guaranteed to raise a smile.
 
Name three films that most classic film fans love, but you hate, and if you can tell us why?
 
Doctor Zhivago – David Lean is my favourite director, but I’m afraid that I can’t stand this film. A rare dud from a master of his craft. Visually it’s stunning and beautiful, but I don’t care about any of the characters and think most of the performances come across as being quite wooden. There’s also no chemistry between Omar and Julie. David Lean was usually so good at getting the balance of intimate human drama and epic visuals just right, so that one didn’t overshadow the other. I don’t know what went wrong here.
Blow-Up – I think it’s so pretentious and it just leaves me cold.
Stage Fright – I love Hitchcock films, but I’m afraid that this one does nothing for me at all. I feel it lacks the suspense and edge of so much of the rest of his work.
 
What makes a film “classic” in your opinion? Do you have a favorite period?
 
For me a film is a classic if it is able to make an impact on viewers outside of the era it was made in. If generation after generation can enjoy a film and keep watching it then it is a classic. I also think that there are classics to be found in every decade of filmmaking, but the classic film era is called the classic era for a good reason. So many films that are classics were made in that era. I love all film periods, but I love the 1940’s the most. I think that was one of the greatest decades in film history, plus it gave us Film Noir! I also adore the Silent era because it’s where it all began. The artistry and innovation evident in the silent films is breathtaking. I have nothing but love for Pre-Code films too.
               A few fave people and moments from classic era cinema. Image sources IMDb.
   Why Should people care about “old” black and white movies? 
Because these films are some of the greatest and most enjoyable films of all time. Without them, film most likely wouldn’t even exist now! If people are only watching films from the present day(I pity them if they are, seeing as how so many films today are total dross)they are missing out on some of the best and most influential films to have ever been made. If you don’t go back to the late 1800’s and start at the very beginning of cinema, then how are you to have any appreciation, or understanding of how film began and how it has evolved and changed over the years? Don’t just stick with films from your own country either, branch out and explore foreign language classic era(and present day)films. Japan and India in particular offer a ridiculous amount of classic era cinematic riches for you to enjoy.
All film fans, and anyone who works in the film industry, owe the Silent pioneers and the classic film era a huge debt of gratitude in my opinion. I don’t know about any of you, but it makes me so sad to think there are people today who don’t know who Akira Kurosawa, Alfred Hitchcock, Fayard and Harold Nicholas, Ida Lupino, Sidney Poitier, Claude Rains, John Ford, Billy Wilder, Jack Cardiff, Cary Grant, David Lean, Satyajit Ray, Cyd Charisse, Gene Kelly, Fred Astaire, Eleanor Powell, James Wong Howe, Powell and Pressburger, Buster Keaton, Anna May Wong, Clara Bow, Setsuko Hara, Marlene Dietrich, Oscar Micheaux, Richard Conte, James Stewart, Edith Head, Adrian, Lon Chaney Sr, Takashi Shimura, Bette Davis, Joan Crawford, Bogie and Bacall, Barbara Stanwyck, Deborah Kerr etc are.
 
Do you have interests in any other arts that you can share?
I dabble in creative writing. I’m also passionate about radio and love coming across those old radio shows starring classic actors. I actually worked in radio myself for some years. I’ve always admired those who can paint and sculpt, and I wish I had that amazing gift myself.

25 thoughts on “3rd Blog Anniversary + An Interview

  1. CanterburyTale

    Happy 3rd anniversary,Maddy. My goodness,has it really been that long? Where has the time gone? I’m sorry that you have had a difficult time health wise, but so pleased that you are able to continue your wonderful posts, and share your infectious enthusiasm with us all (even if we do disagree about Stagefright, although you are spot- on about Doctor Zhivago 😀).
    Here’s to the next 3 years and many more.

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  2. Zoe K

    Happy blogiversary, Maddy! Congrats! I loved reading this interview & finding out more about one of my favorite folk in the blogiverse! (And I so agree with you about George Sanders – simply the best!)

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  3. Paul S

    3 years, wow! Time sure flies. I am sorry to hear about your health problems. As well as being a great writer, you’re one of the kindest and most supportive bloggers. Here’s to many more years sharing your love of classic film.

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  4. Wolfman's Cult Film Club

    Good to see another year pass on by Maddy. We started around the same time and as so many come and go it’s always good to see you as a constant. It gets harder and harder to keep up with all the blogs and comments nowadays not alone actually posting ourselves. So it’s always reassuring to see another Maddy Loves her Classic Films pop up in the feed. Loved the question and answers. Dabnabbit I’m still to see Stray Dogs! Too many classic films to see. I will get there.
    Here’s to many more years in film blog land.
    All the best and happy viewing
    Mikey

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  5. monstergirl

    Congratulations on your 3 year anniversary! I was reading about the challenges you face with your health issues. I have Lupus and several auto immune deficiencies that have been very debilitating for me. There’s so much more I’d like to write but there are days it’s hard for me to even move let alone write. I’m inspired by your prolific endeavors. Here’s to many more years of your wonderful blog! Cheers Joey from The Last Drive In

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  6. mistermuse

    I would also like to add my congrats on your 3rd anniversary. It’s a pleasure to read the posts of someone who closely shares my taste in films.

    I can relate completely to your illness, as my adult daughter has also suffered from Myalgic Encephalomyelitis since her late teens, and has needed to live with my wife and I due to being unable to work, shop or prepare her meals.

    Take care.

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  7. mikestakeonthemovies

    3 years goes by so fast and doing a blog on a regular basis amplifies that fact. I can’t believe I’ve been at it for 6 years now and still going. Keep up the good work and joining us classic film fans together.

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  8. movierob

    wow! great post Maddy! congrats on ur 3 – year blogiversary. Looking forwrad to reading ur stuff for many more years.

    Was quite sorry to hear about your illness, yet am pleased to see that you still are able to find the strength to post.

    Keep up the great work Maddy!

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  9. Jay@cinemaessentials.com

    Has it really been 3 years?! How time flies.

    I’m glad you’ve kept the blog going, even if it’s been difficult at times. It’s always a pleasure to read one of your posts. I did see your CMBA profile and enjoyed reading it. It was a nice surprise, because I’d just been asked by John about doing mine and I thought he’d missed you somehow.

    Stage Fright is one of the few Hitchcocks I haven’t seen. Circumstances have always conspired against me seeing it, although I think I know why it’s often unpopular. I’m not totally averse to Blow Up, but then I do see myself as a sort of cool, hepcat, dude-about-town like David Hemmings, so that’s probably why.

    I’m sorry to hear your health has got worse. Hopefully things will get better for you and that you remember that you have many friends out there who are thinking of you.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
  10. Margot Shelby

    Hi Maddy, I almost missed this article. Happy blogiversary. I knew you had health issues but I didn’t know what. Very sorry to hear it. I can’t even begin to imagine how it must affect you.

    Love your CMBA profile. I left a message on the CMBA website but it looks as if comments there don’t get published for weeks.
    I agree on Doctor Zhivago. Doesn’t work for me. I also agree on Jeremy Brett as Holmes. He’s my favorite too.

    Keep up the good work. It’s important to have something to do you really love and takes your mind off the crappier things in life.

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