Thursday, 19 January 2017

Thursday Movie Picks: Movies Featuring an Actor/Actress that Passed Away in 2016

I obviously have not got it together this week as I went and picked a random theme thinking it was this week's. No idea what happened. Most likely severe lack of sleep and watching A Series of Unfortunate Events on repeat....

Don't forget to check out where it all started over at Wandering Through the Shelves and everyone else who takes part and doesn't get the theme wrong.

David Bowie - Labyrinth
 Technically the great Bowie was a musician but he acted too. He was an all round genius and I feel that I should hnour him with a mention. Plus, Labyrinth is a classic. Bowie as Jareth, the Goblin King is amazing. In fact I had the opening song (Underground) in my head for days. His costume as well as his music was the talk of the town.

Gene Wilder - Young Frankenstein
Everyone knew him as Willy Wonka and he was superb but for me, he's Dr Frankenstein, prounced Frunkenstine. Mel Brooks' hilarious spoof of Mary Shelly's classic novel was, is something you need to see. Frankenstien goes to his grandfather's castle and finds out his secret experiments in bringing the dead back to life. There are some bizarre scenes featuring Gene Hackman as a blind man who wants company and the sound of horses screaming everytime a certain character name is mention and of course the brilliant Madelaine Kahn. Wilder was brilliant.

Kenny Baker - Time Bandits
 Of course he was famous for a role where you never saw his face, R2D2, but I first saw Kenny Baker in Terry Gilliam's Time Bandits. Classic 80s weird fantasy-esque adventure about a boy who goes on the run through time with a group of bandits who helped create the universe. I actually had the pleasure of meeting Kenny Baker at the London Comic Con years ago. 


  1. Like your choices. It's been an intriguing week since even if someone has been chosen by someone else it has been for another film, so lots of different titles.

    I don't love Labyrinth but Bowie was a memorable part of it. Young Frankenstein is such a classic role for him and the rest of the movie and cast can't be beat. Really like the mention of Kenny Baker, there were so many performers lost last year that a lesser known actor could be forgotten. I only watched Time Bandits the once but it was definitely different and had a sense of unique fun.

    We match on Wilder but for a different film. I had trouble narrowing to three but did manage to limit myself to four.

    This Happy Feeling (1958)-Debbie Reynolds-When her boss makes a pass at a party in the Connecticut countryside New Yorker Janet Blake (Debbie) dashes into the rain just as Bill Tremaine (John Saxon) is passing and offers a ride to the subway. When she misconstrues a comment Bill makes as a come-on she jumps out and makes her way to the nearest house which belongs to retired star Preston “Mitch” Mitchell (Curt Jurgens) which he shares with his live-in housekeeper, the tippling Mrs. Early (a hysterical scene stealing Estelle Winwood). Stuck and soaked to the skin she stays the night in his guest room but when Mitch’s lady friend, the droll Nita Hollaway (a standout Alexis Smith) stops by in the morning she assumes the worst. Mitch sets her straight and hires Janet as his secretary beginning a charming romantic comedy with Debbie falling for Curt while John falls for her and she being pulled one way and another while Alexis makes caustic remarks from the sidelines. Little known Blake Edwards comedy is a hidden gem and a first-rate showcase for Debbie’s special magic.

    Sense and Sensibility (1995)-Alan Rickman- When the Dashwood sisters Elinor and Marianne (Emma Thompson & Kate Winslet) and their mother are forced to move out of their home by their brother’s rotten wife they move to a cottage on their cousin’s estate in the English countryside. There Marianne becomes enamored of the dashing Willoughby (Greg Wise) while the more sedate Colonel Brandon (Alan Rickman) pines for her. Meanwhile Elinor yearns for the unavailable Edwards Ferrars (Hugh Grant). There’s so much more in this top flight Jane Austen adaptation directed by Ang Lee but this is a great example of Alan Rickman’s versatility. Best known as the suave but ruthlessly evil Hans Gruber in Die Hard he is the complete opposite here and makes both characters fully formed people.

    Me, Natalie (1969)-Patty Duke-Natalie Miller (Patty) is an average looking Brooklyn teen who has a developed a complex from her mother always telling her she’ll be beautiful someday so don’t worry about being plain now. Her traditional father’s no help, he’s bribed a nerdy family friend (Bob Balaban) to marry her so she can be the housewife he thinks is all she should or can be. Encouraged by her jovial Uncle Harold (Martin Balsam) she breaks free. Renting an apartment from the dotty Miss Dennison (Elsa Lanchester) in Greenwich Village she embarks on a sometimes rocky journey of discovery where she finds that being comfortable with herself is more important than how she looks. Somewhat heavy with late 60’s trappings but aside from The Miracle Worker this is Patty Duke’s best big screen performance. Al Pacino makes his screen debut in a short scene at a dance.

    Silver Streak (1976)-Gene Wilder-While traveling to his sister’s wedding on the Silver Streak train easy-going George Caldwell (Gene) falls smack dab into murder and intrigue when he becomes smitten with Hilly Burns (Jill Clayburgh) the secretary of seemingly innocuous Professor Schreiner. When he thinks he sees a dead body thrown from the train it’s the start of a wild ride both on and off the train during which he partners up with escapee Grover Muldoon (Richard Pryor) who gets him in and out of one crazy situation after another. Mix of comedy, slapstick, thriller and adventure was the first and best pairing of Wilder and Pryor.

  2. By the way, if it was the Underdog theme you had first than it was just that you were looking at the un-updated list. That was the theme before the blogger selections were added in and Wanderer moved underdog to March. So you weren't as swoony as you thought. :-)

  3. YoLove, love, love your picks! I did a Remembrances post and chose Bowie's acting in Labyrinth which I love. Young Frankenstein is simply brilliant from the original 1931 sets being used to the comedic geniuses of Wilder, Feldman, and Kahn. My friend and I can recite so many parts from this funny comedy. I'm so glad you chose Time Bandits which is a brilliant Under seen gem of a movie. I love it so much that I had a great dream where I was travelling through time.

  4. Oh, now I totally love your choices as I've seen all 3 of these films. Labyrinth being a personal favorite of mine because of Bowie. Kudos for picking Time Bandits (which I love) and Young Frankenstein (another favorite of mine).

  5. Have to admit I did forget about Kenny Baker. Haven't actually seen any of pics, but you told me I need to see Young Frankenstien so I guess I will haha

  6. Underdogs was the original theme this week, but she updated her list last week, I think. (Or at least that's when I noticed it) I like that you chose something from Kenny Baker. His is the only film I haven't seen of your picks, but it's nice to see his name.

  7. I've only seen scenes from Young Frankenstein and Gene Wilder was amazing in them. I need to watch the film.

  8. Good picks for those we lost in 2016. Young Frankenstein is such a great movie, and Gene Wilder was absolutely hysterical. The Time Bandits sounds like a such a fun movie!