GARBO!

Discussion of the actors, directors and film-makers who 'made it all happen'

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Vecchiolarry
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Post by Vecchiolarry »

Hi,

That Disney caricature wouldn't be one of Garbo's favourites. It shows her big feet, which she was apparantly concerned not be shown.
I've heard that she often cautioned her cameraman, "Are da feets in?"...

Larry
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Garbomaniac
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Post by Garbomaniac »

You are correct, Sir! But, the funny thing is her foot size was 7 1/2; however, I suppose compared with Jean Harlow's size 4 foot, hers was huge, back then.


Here is another one with Cary Grant.

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charliechaplinfan
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Post by charliechaplinfan »

I remember first seeing Garbo on screen. It was when I was making my first forays into the world of film. It was a showing of Flesh and the Devil, I didn't know she was so beautiful, I'd seen a couple of stills but to see her on celluloid. Ever since I've been a fan. I slightly prefer her silents, although there are a lot of her talkies I haven't seen. I think the silence adds to her mystery and allure.

Favorite silent remains Flesh and the Devil and favorite talkie is Queen Christina.

Garbomaniac, you must have Mark Vieira's book on Garbo? I just love to thumb through the pages.

As for her feet, that isn't that big is i t:? . I have a pair of Timberland boots in American sizes, I don't stgand too tall and I'm sure my feet are bigger than hers.
Failure is unimportant. It takes courage to make a fool of yourself - Charlie Chaplin
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Garbomaniac
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Post by Garbomaniac »

Hi CCF. Yes, I have Mark Vieira's book. I bought two copies the minute I knew it was available. I read the book cover to cover twice. I keep it in my restroom, for when I rest! That is about the only time I can enjoy reading. The rest of the day is usually "a house a fire!" That is one of the primary reasons I am so limited in my scope. Whenever I think of reading about Lana or Cary, etc., I think to myself, "Why read about them when I could again be getting lost in the world of Garbo?" Don't get me wrong, I do occasionally read other things, but if I have my druthers, it is always GG. I am presently reading The Private Life of Greta Garbo by Rilla Page Palmborg copyright 1931. It is in pretty good condition, but I wouldn't care what condition. I am so happy to have it. It is considered a basic starting point for many a Garbo book which follows all the way up to the present. Even Vieira cited the book several times.

And, as for Garbo's beauty, ah yes, she is very beautiful. I don't know whether or not you frequent the TCM boards, but one battle that continues is over Hedy Lamarr and Greta Garbo. Which one is more beautiful? I can't even make up my mind. So, the only two lovelies to grace my walls are Greta and Hedy.

My favorite silent is The Single Standard. If you haven't seen it, you must. Nils Asther is her leading man, and they worked well together. In fact, that is the film that introduced me to Nils. I had seen The Bitter Tea of General Yen, but he was in make up. Now, when I watch that movie I can see through the make-up.

And, blah, blah, blah, that is not a large foot. Of course sizes could have been different back then. I remember reading once that Marilyn wore a size 14 dress! Well, come to find out sizing numbers have changed greatly over time. So, maybe her foot was even smaller!
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charliechaplinfan
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Post by charliechaplinfan »

This is were I get confused, I think our UK sizes are 4 different to yours. I'm a size 10 here which I think is a size 6 in the US. If Marilyn were a size 14 that would mean she was a size 18 here. I think sizes have changed. I remember seeing an item of Marilyn's clothing in LAs Vegas, it was far smaller than I'd have thought.

An item of clothing I did think was really small was Priscilla Presley's wedding dress at Graceland. Oh my goodness, she was tiny.
Failure is unimportant. It takes courage to make a fool of yourself - Charlie Chaplin
Vecchiolarry
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Post by Vecchiolarry »

Hi James & Alison,

I wasn't exactly saying that Garbo had big feet, I was just reiterating that she thought she had big feet or someone once told her that she did.
She probably had normal size ones but was paranoid about them because she perceived them to be large!!
Any Garbo movie I've seen however, I've never noticed her feet only her face!!!

About Monroe:
Here in the Glenbow Museum, there is an exhibition of Marilyn Monroe photographs from 1946 to 1962. And also, about 40 dresses and costumes from most of her movies.
Everyone has commented on how petite she was and her waist was so tiny!!
I went to the opening of it last October (it finishes this month) and I was surprised at the photogenency of her and how small she was. One photographs larger on the big screen and often people are astonished at how small movie stars are.
I site Gloria Swanson & Bette Davis as examples.

Larry
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Garbomaniac
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Post by Garbomaniac »

Interesting about Marilyn, Gloria, and Bette. I have heard that about some stars before, but I never met one, so I wouldn't know.

Now, as for Garbo, EVERYONE made fun of her feet. But, I really don’t think it bothered her much. There was one story of a director who made a derogatory remark about her small breasts. She simply replied, “You’ll have to talk to GOD about that.” Plus the fact that she disliked shoes. If given the slightest chance, she would wear slippers in a scene. That is the main reason she always asked if the feets were in.

In reading this latest book, I have again grounded my admiration for her in so many ways, but mostly in her convictions. She absolutely dismissed using her name in connection with any advertisement as cheap and puzzling. As a Swede, she just never understood flaunting the simple use of her name to milk the public of its money. Even to the point of signing an autograph, she absolutely refused, and never ever wavered. Oh, sure, once in a while if sending flowers or a note, she might sign her name, but that was personal, not mercenary. She did sign a couple of pics early on, which are worth a considerable amount if they can be proven genuine. But, I would never trust any of them. I chose to believe they are mostly fakes, due to her rigid discipline of refusing everyone from a janitor to a king.

Here is one genuine article. She signed this photo for her director after filming The Temptress. It says, "To Fred Niblo, with a piece of my heart, Greta Garbo." Of course this came out of a book. I don't own it!

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charliechaplinfan
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Post by charliechaplinfan »

Thanks for the insight on Marilyn, Larry, I remember being struck by how tiny her waist was. One thing I liked about Marilyn was that she did have fluctuating weight, like most of us. She was very trim when filming Something's Got To Give but during Some Like It Hot and The Misfits she was rounder, softer looking.

I know Gloria was tiny as were many of her contemproraries. Greta broke the mould not because she had large feet but because she was tall in comparison to many of the female stars of the day, she probably stood shoulder to shoulder with some of her male costars.

The only other outfits I've seen were those of Elvis Presley at Graceland. I remember being surprised at how tall he was. 6ft I don't know why I didn't think he was so tall. He was skinny too, when he was younger. I loved the look he had for his comeback concert 8)
Failure is unimportant. It takes courage to make a fool of yourself - Charlie Chaplin
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Garbomaniac
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Re: GARBO!

Post by Garbomaniac »

Just thought I would drag this thread back to the top and thrill everyone with some glorious images of The Divine Garbo. :wink:

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Mr. Arkadin
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Re: GARBO!

Post by Mr. Arkadin »

Conquest (1937) just showed on TCM. Any thoughts on that one?
melwalton
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Re: GARBO!

Post by melwalton »

The posts about Garbo sound like a pressagents' convention. A while back, I said some nice things about Julie Harris ... mild, I didn't use words like goddess or divine and boy, did I get pounded. I enjoyed the contraversy, it was fun. Now, there's all this praise for Garbo and not a word of disagreement. We are becoming complacent . ...Are you there, Judy?
We all have favorite actors / actresses, most of whom are mortal .... mel
PS I expect some real pounding now.
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Garbomaniac
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Re: GARBO!

Post by Garbomaniac »

Well, I did wink!!

Now, as for Conquest, it was a MAGNIFICENT defeat! Garbo kept hitting highs and lows with the public, but she was usually not concerned. Queen Christina wasn't as popular as expected but for many (Hitler and others) it was and is their favorite film. She followed that with the Painted Veil which was another public disappointment. She was not high on anyone's list as "popular." Actresses like Lombard and Loy were getting the most attention and the box office. She was becoming concerned and more careful in her choices. So, she chose to do Anna Karenina which lifted her back up as an artist and the critics hailed her as supreme actress of the screen. She won the New York Film Critics Award for Best Actress. Then came Camille. Again she won acclaim (winning the NYFC Award again) and was compared to Bernhadt and Duse. By now, the general public was starting to think they might have misjudged her. But, Conquest proved to be a long, dull history. People stayed away in droves. More people were impressed with Boyer than Garbo. It knocked her right back down, and she needed something pretty fantastic to pick her up again.

Of course, I don't mind anything she is in because I watch the film for Garbo not the story, director, or anything else, although those things help. I thought she was excellent, but I really didn't care for the film and thought it a huge let down after Camille! But, how do you top Camille? With Ninotchka, that's how. Too bad they didn't follow in that order completely skipping Conquest.

However, some of the most beautiful pictures of Garbo came out of Conquest:

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charliechaplinfan
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Re: GARBO!

Post by charliechaplinfan »

She photographs so beautifully. I think she has more mystique and allure in her silent films but she's colder in her talkies. I'd love to see Conquest despite what the critics say.
Failure is unimportant. It takes courage to make a fool of yourself - Charlie Chaplin
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silentscreen
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Re: GARBO!

Post by silentscreen »

charliechaplinfan wrote:She photographs so beautifully. I think she has more mystique and allure in her silent films but she's colder in her talkies.
I have to agree with that Alison. Her type of mystique is always more suitable in silents. The same can be said for many artists from that era. Including John Gilbert. He just doesn't come across as the intensive lover in talking movies as he did in silents. I think the same thing would have happened to Valentino.
"Humor is nothing less than a sense of the fitness of things." Carole Lombard
Vecchiolarry
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Re: GARBO!

Post by Vecchiolarry »

Hi James,

I disagree -- with "Two Faced Woman", poor Greta went out with a thud.. I think MGM and she agreed to not use her during the war years and then they all just forgot about any career.
In 1945, she was 40; and back then, people in the movies were often finished at 40....

I think they should have made that movie with James Mason in 1947. She still looked good and makeup can make you look better.
And then, she should have said, "I vant to be alone"... Since everyone seems to think the movie would have been a good one, and successful, then she would have gone out 'on top'.....

Larry
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