Miriam Hopkins

  • Stephen Roberts – The Story of Temple Drake [+ Extras] (1933)

    1931-1940ClassicsDramaStephen RobertsUSA

    Loosely adapted from William Faulkner’s controversial novel Sanctuary, this notorious pre-Code melodrama stars Miriam Hopkins as Temple Drake, the coquettish granddaughter of a respected small-town judge. When a boozehound date strands her at a bootleggers’ hideout, Temple is subjected to an act of nightmarish sexual violence and plunged into a criminal underworld that threatens to swallow her up completely. Steeped in southern-gothic shadows by influential cinematographer Karl Struss and shot through with moral ambiguity, The Story of Temple Drake is a harrowing vision of sin and salvation that boasts an astonishing lead performance from the fiery Hopkins, whose passage through the stations of terror, trauma, and redemption is a true tour de force of screen acting.Read More »

  • Russ Meyer & Albert Zugsmith – Fanny Hill AKA Fanny Hill: Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure (1964)

    1961-1970Albert ZugsmithComedyCultRuss MeyerUSA

    Young, pretty and innocent Fanny Hill has lost her parents and must find her way in life amidst the perils of turbulent 18th century London. She is fortunate enough to find rapidly a place as chambermaid of the effusive Mrs. Brown. Mrs. Brown lives in a large house teeming with female “relatives” in négligée and with very relaxed manners. She also insists that Fanny meets alone various gentlemen who show an ardent interest in Fanny.Read More »

  • Walter Reisch – Men Are Not Gods (1936)

    1931-1940DramaUSAWalter Reisch

    Very interesting cast in this 1936 British film that predates A DOUBLE LIFE by nearly a decade.

    Miriam Hopkins plays a secretary who alters a scathing review of an actor in OTHELLO at his wife’s (Gertrude Lawrence) behest. The wife turns out to be correct and the actor (Sebastian Shaw) goes on to become the rage of London’s West End.

    Hopkins then becomes obsessed with the actor and starts going to all the performances of the play. Shaw then become smitten with Hopkins and we get a parallel story of jealousy and rage finally played out on the stage as Shaw’s Othello tries to kill Lawrence’s Desdemona. All very intriguing and very well played with bits of humor here and there.Read More »

  • Edmund Goulding – The Old Maid (1939)

    1931-1940ClassicsDramaEdmund GouldingUSA

    The movie is about two cousins, Charlotte (Bette Davis) and Delia (Miriam Hopkins), who are in love with the same man (George Brent). Originally he was to marry Delia but looses her to a rich rival. He then turns to Charlotte. He is killed in the fighting before he and Charlotte can marry. Charlotte becomes an unwed mother, an impossible situation for a young woman in the mid-nineteenth century. Charlotte hides the baby among a group of civil war orphans she cares for. She later accepts recently-widowed Delia’s big house, where she installs herself and her daughter, who is told that she’s an orphan. Read More »

  • Rouben Mamoulian & Lowell Sherman – Becky Sharp (1935)

    1931-1940DramaLowell ShermanRomanceRouben MamoulianUSA

    Set against the background of the Battle of Waterloo, Becky Sharp is the story of Vanity Fair by Thackeray. Becky and Amelia are girls at school together, but Becky is from a “show biz” family, or in other words, very low class. Becky manages to insinuate herself in Amelia’s family and gets to know all their friends. From this possibly auspicious- beginning, she manages to ruin her own life, becoming sick, broke, and lonely, and also ruins the lives of many other “loved ones”. In the movie we get to see the class distinctions in England at the time, and get a sense of what it was like for the English military at the time of the Napoleonic wars.Read More »

  • Vincent Sherman – Old Acquaintance [+Extras] (1943)

    1941-1950ClassicsDramaQueer Cinema(s)USAVincent Sherman

    Robert Horton, Amazon.com wrote:
    Bette Davis and Miriam Hopkins–a pair of actresses who hated each other–re-mix their chemistry from The Old Maid in Old Acquaintance, an entertaining adaptation of John Van Druten’s play. The action begins with Davis, a semi-famous author, returning to her small town and the home of old friend Hopkins. The later has opted for the settled life of husband and pregnancy, and she doesn’t much hide her envy of Davis’s success. Then the tables turn, as Hopkins pens a series of potboilers that sell much better than her friend-rival’s. The movie keeps checking up on these two as the years pass, each wanting what the other has. Read More »

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