Thursday, 14 February 2013
Classic Film Crushes
Indeed, I have probably written about my very first classic film crush so often in this blog that I imagine my regular readers are probably sick of hearing about it. That having been said, I will repeat it for those who haven't read it yet. It happened when I was 8 years old. My Fair Lady came on the television that night. Being a typical boy, I really didn't want to watch it--after all, musicals were for sissies. What I did not know is that my father's favourite genre, besides Westerns, was the musical. He convinced me to watch My Fair Lady on the grounds that I might like it. And I did indeed it like it. It remains one of my favourite movies to this day. More importantly, however, I fell irrevocably, hopelessly in love with Audrey Hepburn. Afterwards I would always seek out her movies on television and eventually rent them on VHS. I've never fully recovered from falling in love with Audrey all those years ago.
After Audrey Hepburn and Vivien Leigh I would develop a number of screen crushes over the years. Despite Anita Loos' claim that "Gentlemen prefer blondes," most of my screen crushes have been brunettes. I remember when I was about twelve (it must have been a banner year for classic film crushes for me) and Samson and Delilah was on television. I developed a powerful crush on Hedy Lamarr from which I have never quite recovered. Indeed, if anything I probably have a bigger crush on her now than I did then. When I was twelve she was just this exquisite, talented brunette beauty. About fifteen years ago I learned that with George Antheil she invented a frequency hopping technique that would lead to today's spread spectrum technology used in everything from mobile phones to GPS systems. Not only was Hedy Lamarr gorgeous, she was a genius.
Grace Kelly would not be my the only blonde upon whom I would have a crush, as I also had a crush on Doris Day. I saw her TV show (which was reran in the Seventies and the Eighties) before I saw any of her movies, but it was when I saw Pillow Talk for the first time that I fell for her. As a lad I actually didn't think of Doris as beautiful (something that would change when I became an adult), although I did think of her as pretty. My crush on Doris Day stemmed more from her personality on television and film--an independent woman with a strong will and a sharp wit. It helped that she is also a great singer with a great voice. I must admit that I have always been a sucker when it comes to a woman with a beautiful voice. Grace Kelly and Doris Day would not be the only blondes on whom I had crushes. I also developed crushes on Kim Novak and Veronica Lake.