Monday, December 01, 2014

Mae West: Go Unpunished

The British reporters noticed that MAE WEST was sorely tested by the Hays Office.
• • "Belle of the Nineties." At the Plaza. • •
• • British movie critic Charles Davy wrote: The purity campaign in America has evidently cramped Miss Mae West's style. Compared with her voluptuous lion-tamer in "I'm No Angel," her Ruby Carter in "Belle of the Nineties" is a decidedly subdued and comparatively virtuous character.  Indeed, in the somewhat murky atmosphere of the New Orleans music halls and boxing rings fifty years ago, Ruby Carter might almost pass for an austere upholder of moral principles, determined that illegal practices can not go unpunished. It is true that she dopes the Tiger Kid's water-bottle during his championship fight, thus causing him to be promptly knocked out when he appeared to be on the verge of winning, but she does this only because she believes that he has been bribed by Ace Lamont, a flashy entertainments promoter, to steal her jewels. Fortunately, the Tiger Kid is able to explain that, although he did steal the jewels, he thought they belonged to another woman, who was — — he had been told — — a blackmailer. As this apparently clears his character, the film is able to close with his wedding to Ruby — — a ceremony performed in the most respectable style by a real clergyman.
• • Mae's view of human nature is hostile to humbug • •
• • It is hardly fair to Miss West's peculiar but genuine talents that she should have to appear in this rather sordid and, old-fashioned melodrama, but she is allowed to bring off a good many of her celebrated wisecracks, and those who found her somewhat overpowering in her earlier film may be relieved to know that this time the Censor has had little trouble. Actually, it seems to me that her straightforward methods are preferable to the sophisticated innuendoes and the false sexual romanticism with which Hollywood frequently surrounds players of far less lurid reputation.  Miss West's view of human nature is monotonous, but it is at least hostile to humbug.
• • Source: Review by Charles Davy in The Spectator [U.K.]; published on Friday, 30 November 1934.
• • On Friday, 1 December 1933 • •
• • An article about Mae West with the title "Diamond Lil" ran in the Chicago Daily Tribune on Friday, 1 December 1933.
• • On Wednesday, 1 December 1976 in Hollywood • •
• • Mae West starred in "Sextette" [1978], and the cinematography was done by James Crabe.
• • Shooting began  at Paramount Studios' rental facility in December — — on Wednesday, 1 December 1976 — — and the picture was wrapped up during March 1977. James Crabe captured his leading lady in medium shots. There would be no close-ups in "Sextette" of Mae West.
• • Overheard in Hollywood • •
• • "Mae West will open casino" • •
• • Las Vegas, Monday — Mae West will open soon a gambling restaurant-casino at Las Vegas.
• • Her lawyer. Charles Catt, announced today that Mae West would be a featured attraction in the casino's floor shows.
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said:  "Oh, I'm never dirty, dear. I'm interesting without bein' vulgar. I have taste." 
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • The Motion Picture Herald mentioned Mae West.
• • "Silver Calls Patrons; Tells 'Em Mae's in Town" • •
• • Nathan Silver at the Strand in Lowell, Mass., put his cashier to work three day ahead on "Goin' to Town" calling numbers asking "Is Mae West at the Strand on Saturday?" and, on opening day, the call was repeated with "this is Mae West speaking. I hope to see you at the Strand today." Accompanying photo shows attractive lobby display used five weeks in advance, measuring 15 feet by 14, against which was placed a full length figure of Mae West, surrounded by scene stills.
• • Several prominent stores came through with window displays featuring the full-length standee of Mae, and a bus company devoted window to cut-out of star with "if you're going to town, use our bus" tie-in copy.
• • Source: Item in Motion Picture Herald; published on Saturday, 6 July 1935 
• • The Mae West Blog celebrates its 10th anniversary • •    
• • Thank you for reading, sending questions, and posting comments during this past decade. The other day we entertained 1,223 visitors. 
• • By the Numbers • • 
• • The Mae West Blog was started ten years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 3060th blog post. Unlike many blogs, which draw upon reprinted content from a newspaper or a magazine and/ or summaries, links, or photos, the mainstay of this blog is its fresh material focused on the life and career of Mae West, herself an American original.

• • Come up and see Mae every day online:

Source: to Google

• • Photo:
• • Mae West in 1934

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