Movie Notes: It’s a Wonderful Life

The movie resolution of 2020 is off to a good start. I did not hate this movie at all and didn’t have to make myself finish it. I genuinely wanted to keep watching. The story still feels relatable, which is unusual for such an old movie. You’ve got to be a robot not to share at least some of George’s feelings sometimes. I think the movie is so popular because most people can relate to what the character experiences.

My favorite character was the blonde “loose woman.” She’s very beautiful and the best actress in terms of skill in the whole movie.

I’m thinking Midnight Cowboy for the next movie choice. What do you, folks, think? Good idea or not?

14 thoughts on “Movie Notes: It’s a Wonderful Life”

  1. Midnight Cowboy and It’s a Wonderful Life is definitely not a double bill that would have occurred to me.

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    1. :-))))

      The choice reflects the depth of my ignorance of US movies. I saw Midnight Cowboy on the 50 Best Movies list, and it attracted me because I like Dustin Hoffman.

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  2. “I’m thinking Midnight Cowboy for the next movie choice.”

    Watch Rosemary’s Baby instead. It’s a much better period movie from the late 1960’s.

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      1. “I’m not watching anything by Polanski.”

        I thought that you believed in separating the art from the flawed artist. Child molester Polanski was an excellent director.

        (But if you read the book, the movie was an exceptionally exact reworking of the novel, with none of the usual liberties in plot or character presentation usually seen in films. So you can skip the flick.)

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  3. “the blonde “loose woman.” She’s very beautiful and the best actress”

    Gloria Grahame, a great actress (triva she won a supporting Oscar in 1952 and Donna Reed won the same award the next year). Unfortunately she (or the studio) didn’t take her best talents into account and she was very miscast in the movie version of Oklahoma! (indispensable musical) from which her career never really recovered….
    On paper Ado Annie should be a great part for her, but she conveys worry more than joy in her sexuality, especially in her big solo “I cain’t say no”

    “I’m just a girl who cain’t say no
    I’m in a terrible fix
    I always say “come on, let’s go!”
    Just when I oughta say nix…”

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  4. Stay with the 1940s and try “Now, Voyager” one of the most iconic roles of one of the most iconic American movie stars (Bette Davis).
    Bonus: A battle between a narcissistic toxic mother and a daughter yearning to breathe free! And one of the top ten classic closing lines of any American movie…
    As (I think) Pauline Kael wrote (paraphrasing) it strains credibility a time or two but if it were more realistic it wouldn’t work at all.

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    1. You really know how to get me interested! 🙂

      This movie I never even heard about. But I heard about Bette Davis, at least. Never seen her, obviously.

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  5. The old Fox Network television show “Married…with Children” did a parody of It’s a Wonderful Life that was much better than the treacly movie.

    In the movie, James Stewart decides to return to life because he’s shown a vision of how his family would be destitute and miserable if he stayed dead. In the “Married…” parody, the husband/father character is shown a vision of how his family would be MUCH HAPPIER and successful if he stayed dead — and he doesn’t think they deserve happiness after the way they’ve ruined his life, so he goes back to life to keep them miserable.

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  6. “The story still feels relatable”

    I think I just realized why this movie became so iconic in the 1980s. That was the decade the country began changing from Bedford Falls (capitalist but with ethics and a sense of civic duty and the common good) into Pottersville, run by amoral finance (Potter sees nothing wrong with stealing the $8000 because it will help his bottom line)
    The movie shows exactly what comes form surrendering civic authority to the banks – and the country sided with Old Man Potter anyway. The movie is about solidarity (Bedford Falls) vs fluidity (Pottersville). We want to think that people would choose solidarity but back in the real world…

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