Announcing the 3rd Annual “SEX! (now that I have your attention) BLOGATHON)”

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It’s time for our yearly foray into risque business that we call the…

SEX! (now that I have your attention) BLOGATHON

Held every year to usher in the summer season, we ask for blog entries about movies that suggestively depict sex through dialogue and imagery. (Think pre-1960’s, especially movies that had to submit to the Production Code. And if you’re stuck for ideas, click here and here for links to entries from our past SEX! blogathons.)

Here are the rules for our sizzling summer ‘thon:

Your blog entry can be about any single movie, as long as it fits the following criteria.

1. You need to write about an entire movie that you find sexy, not just a single scene. The upside-down kiss in the 2001 Spider-Man movie was undeniably sexy, but unless you can make a case for the entire movie being a turn-on, please don’t write about it.

2. The movie you choose can be from any era (even silent), but it needs to be a movie that subtly suggests sex. No writhing, naked bodies, and no explicit dialogue about how much one person wants to go to bed with another.

That’s not to say that your choice can’t be a modern movie with adult dialogue. If you can make a solid case for something like, say, Body Heat (which was a modern homage to 1940’s-style movie sex), I’ll accept it.

3. Explain why you think the movie is sexy. Your explanation does not have to be lurid or explicit, just a simple description of why the movie “does something” for you.

How Do I Join the Blogathon?

In the “Comments” section at the bottom of this blog, please leave your name, the URL of your blog, and the movie you are choosing to blog about. At the end of this blog entry are banners for the ‘thon. Grab a banner, display it on your blog, and link it back to this blog.

The blogathon will take place from Friday, June 16, through Sunday, June 18, 2017. When the opening date of the blogathon arrives, leave a comment here with a link to your post, and I will display it in the list of entries (which I will continually update up to the beginning of the ‘thon, so keep checking back!).

I will not be assigning particular dates to any blog posts. As long as you get your entry in by the end of the day on June 18, I will be satisfied. (That said, the earlier the better!) Duplicate entries about the same movie are welcome as well.

Again, be sure to leave me a comment and grab a banner, and have fun with your blog entry!

Here is the list of blog entries to date, in chronological order:

Charlene’s (Mostly) Classic Movie Reviews – Trouble in Paradise (1932)

Movie Movie Blog Blog – The Gang’s All Here (1943)

BNoirDetour – The Big Sleep (1946)

ThoughtsAllSorts – Duel in the Sun (1946)

Lifesdailylessonsblog – The Ghost and Mrs. Muir (1947)

Love Letters to Old Hollywood – The Pirate (1948)

Blog of the Darned – A Guide for the Married Man (1967)

Moon in Gemini – Like Water for Chocolate (1992)

Realweegiemidget Reviews – Lost in Translation (2003)

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GENTLEMEN PREFER BLONDES (1953) – Fun feminism

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The following is my entry in this (my) blog’s 2nd Annual SEX! (now that I have your attention) Blogathon, being hosted here from June 19-21, 2016. Click on the above banner, and read bloggers’ critiques of movies that subtly suggest sexuality rather than graphically depicting it!

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(The following blog entry is dedicated to former USA TODAY film critic Mike Clark — who, one day when he tried to switch the TV channel from a showing of Jane Russell’s The French Line, was chastized by his crying two-year-old son, who told him, “I want to see the big lady!”)

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I am married to a newspaper publisher and editor, so I’d be a fool not to believe that women are the equal of, and in many ways far superior to, their male counterparts. What I don’t believe is that women can’t be feminist and sexy at the same time.

Unfortunately, women are so often forced to loudly confirm my first statement (in order to shout over the yahoos who try to drown them out) that the second statement gets lost in the confusion. But I think that director Howard Hawks — whose filmography is filled with bold, assertive women (see His Girl Friday and Ball of Fire) — was trying to make this point, however subtextually, when he directed my all-time favorite movie musical, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes.

The movie stars Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell as Lorelei Lee and Dorothy Shaw, two American showgirls en route to France. The story makes it abundantly clear that these women want what they want, with no apologies, and each is given her own musical number to spell it out.

Dorothy is attracted to brawny, ripply men, and she lusts over acres of them in the hilarious “Ain’t There Anyone Here for Love?” (Naive moviegoer that I am, it took me years of sexual politicism to realize that there might be a reason why this roomful of muscle-bound males never give a second glance to buxom Dorothy.)

Lorelei adores anything with a dollar sign attached to it, particularly diamonds, and she makes this feeling explicit in the iconic “Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend.” Luckily, Lorelei happens to be engaged to Gus (Tommy Noonan), a rich, milquetoast man who is only too happy to appease her. Unfortunately, Gus’ father completely distrusts Lorelei and hires Ernie Malone (Elliott Reid), a private detective, to tail Lorelei on her cruise to France. Too bad Ernie has a thing for women who look like Jane Russell.

At this point, I must make a full confession: I am not gaga over Marilyn Monroe as most red-blooded American males are. I can easily see why she became a star and the fantasy figure for so many people, but for me, she just sells “it” a little too hard. However, she does win me over for, at least, the duration of this movie. If you doubt the movie’s support of feminism, listen to Lorelei’s beautiful speech to Gus’ father near movie’s end — where basically, she upends the viewpoint of male chauvinists by saying, If you guys can have it both ways, why can’t we women have it, too?

Nevertheless, my heart — and let’s face it, my hormones — go out to Jane Russell. She is thoroughly winning as Dorothy — strong, brassy, and yet willing to let her heart melt when the right guy comes along. And for a woman who spent a large part of her autobiography apologizing for the skin she displayed in The Outlaw and The French Lineshe has zero qualms about showing off her absolutely bitchin’ bod here — particularly in a short reprise of Marilyn’s “Diamonds” number that, for me at least, has it all over the original.

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That’s right, Operator, I said “absolutely bitchin’ bod.”

Wouldn’t the world be a whole lot better off if each gender admitted to and embraced its weaknesses and strengths? One wonders how many moviegoers, if any, caught the feminist broadside of this smashing musical when it was first released in 1953. Six decades later, it’s still a message worth taking in, even if you have to root around in the subtext to find it.

 

Make way! The 2nd Annual “SEX! (now that I have your attention) Blogathon” is here!

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Ready to usher in summer with some major hotness? Join us at this blog for the next three days, as bloggers chime in about movies that cleverly suggest sexuality rather than graphically depicting it.

If you are one of the blogathon entrants, please post the URL to your blog entry in the “Comments” section below, and I will link to it as soon as possible. Please have your entry posted by the end of the day on Tues., June 21 (and if I may, the sooner the better!).

If you are just stopping by for some great reading, please give this blog bookmarked, as entries will continue coming in for the next three days. Enjoy, and be sure to have a fan directed at you while you’re reading — you might get a little hot under the collar!

Here are the blogathon’s entrants:

Movie Movie Blog Blog – Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953)

Serendipitous Anachronisms – A Room with a View (1985)

Moon in Gemini – A Place in the Sun (1951)

BNoirDetour – Scarlet Street (1945)

The Flapper Dame – The Seven Year Itch (1955)

Outspoken & Freckled – It (1927)

Love Letters to Old Hollywood – To Catch a Thief (1955)

Defiant Success – A Streetcar Named Desire (1951)

Thoughts All Sorts – Pride and Prejudice (2005)

Flickers in Time – Heaven Knows, Mr. Allison (1957)

Meredy.com – Red-Headed Woman (1932)

Pop Culture Reverie – The Moon Is Blue (1953)

Realweegiemidget – When Harry Met Sally (1989)

Silent Wierdness – Lady Windermere’s Fan (1925)

Pfeiffer Pfilms and Meg Movies – The Age of Innocence (1993)

Dell on Movies – Double Indemnity (1944)

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The 2nd Annual “SEX (now that I have your attention) BLOGATHON” is only one month away!

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THE POSTMAN ALWAYS RINGS TWICE (1946) – Murder in the lust degree

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The following is my entry in my SEX! (now that I have your attention) BLOGATHON, devoted to movies that avoid graphic depictions of sex by suggesting it through dialogue and imagery. Click on the banner above to read bloggers’ critiques on a wide variety of such movies!

An American poster for the movie (left) beside its more risque French version.

An American poster for the movie (left) beside its more risque French version.

A famous line from Casablanca goes, “The problems of two people don’t amount to a hill of beans in this crazy world.” The Postman Always Rings Twice is a luridly perfect dramatization of that theme.

The movie concerns Frank (John Garfield), a drifter who happens upon a modest cafe off the beaten California track. The cafe is run by Nick (Cecil Kellaway), an affable old man content to drink his leisure time away. Far less satisfied with this blase lifestyle is Nick’s young wife Cora (Lana Turner), who first meets Frank while wearing as little clothing as the 1946 censors would allow.

How little? This little.

How little? This little.

As happens in this kind of story, Nick and Cora begin at odds with each other, fall deep into lust, and then plot to do away with the unfortunate third party in the story. Do they succeed? It depends on your definition of success. And anyway, that’s not really what Postman is all about.

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The crux of the story occurs when Leon Ames and Hume Cronyn enter the movie as dueling attorneys. They both know their clients are guilty of something — even if they can’t really prove it — and their clients’ lives amount to so little, one attorney literally bets his client’s life against the other.

Ames and Cronyn.

Ames and Cronyn.

Postman is ostensibly about lust — especially as personified by Turner, thinly veiled in every sense. But in the end it’s about the inevitability of fate. Nick and Cora might be able to fool mere mortals, but by movie’s end, the gods have a few surprises for them.

This is film noir at its finest, full of lurking shadows and expressionist images. And it’s beautifully acted. Turner’s later attempts at depth failed, but when it comes to pouty lust, she has no peer. The finest turn, however, is by Hume Cronyn as one of the oily lawyers who proves that, as Cora should have learned, it’s not about the money. (Also look for Cronyn’s crony, played by Alan Reed, who later gained cartoon immortality as the voice of Fred Flintstone.)
Due to the 1940’s Production Code (read, micromanaging censors), it took Postman 12 years to make it from novel to movie. (Perhaps the movie’s biggest surprise is that it was produced by squeaky-clean M-G-M, which bought the rights to James M. Cain’s original novel and then feared to film it because of its daring themes. The studio finally went ahead with the movie after noting the success of the similarly themed Double Indemnity, also based on a novel by Cain. Nevertheless, M-G-M studio head Louis B. Mayer despised the movie, to no one’s surprise.)

Yet in terms of sexiness (and life lessons), this movie is miles ahead of the more graphic 1981 remake with Jack Nicholson and Jessica Lange. Keep a handkerchief handy as you sweat over the original sweater girl and the hopeless, hapless plight of her and her erstwhile lover.

All right, Lana, show's over. Zip it back up.

All right, Lana, show’s over. Zip it back up.

Announcing the “SEX! (now that I have your attention) BLOGATHON”

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Ah, summer! That time of year where the thoughts of red-blooded Americans turn to…

…hot, sweaty, unmitigated sex.

To honor this baser element of mankind, Movie Movie Blog Blog plans to usher in the summer of 2015 with the SEX! (now that I have your attention) BLOGATHON!

Lest this sound like a blogathon you’d want to avoid like a social disease, let me clarify what I’m looking for.

Remember when movies had Production Codes and the like that prevented them from overtly depicting sex on the movie screen? That was a time when filmmakers had to be very imaginative, suggesting sex through dialogue and imagery. That’s the kind of movie sex I’m looking for in this blogathon!

The Rules

Your blog entry can be about any single movie, as long as it fits the following criteria.

1. You need to write about an entire movie that you find sexy, not just a single scene. The upside-down kiss in the 2001 Spider-Man movie was undeniably sexy, but unless you can make a case for the entire movie being a turn-on, please don’t write about it.

2. The movie you choose can be from any era (even silent), but it needs to be a movie that subtly suggests sex. No writhing, naked bodies, and no explicit dialogue about how much one person wants to go to bed with another.

That’s not to say that your choice can’t be a modern movie with adult dialogue. If you can make a solid case for something like, say, Body Heat (which was a modern homage to 1940’s-style movie sex), I’ll accept it.

3. Explain why you think the movie is sexy. Your explanation does not have to be lurid or explicit, just a simple description of why the movie “does something” for you.

How Do I Join the Blogathon?

In the “Comments” section at the bottom of this blog, please leave your name, the URL of your blog, and the movie you are choosing to blog about. At the end of this blog entry are banners for the ‘thon. Grab a banner, display it on your blog, and link it back to this blog.

The blogathon will take place from Friday, June 19, through Sunday, June 21 (the first day of summer). When the opening date of the blogathon arrives, leave a comment here with a link to your post, and I will display it in the list of entries (which I will continually update up to the beginning of the ‘thon, so keep checking back!).

I will not be assigning particular dates to any blog posts. As long as you get your entry in by the end of the day on June 21, I will be satisfied. (That said, the earlier the better!) Duplicate entries about the same movie are welcome as well.

Again, be sure to leave me a comment and grab a banner, and have fun with your blog entry!

Here is the list of blog entries to date:

Movie Movie Blog Blog – The Postman Always Rings Twice (1946)

BNoirDetour – Born to Kill (1947)

Criterion Blues – Ingmar Bergman’s Summer with Monika (1953)

Moon in Gemini – Blood and Sand (1941)

A Shroud of Thoughts – Pillow Talk (1959)

CineMaven – The Smiling Lieutenant (1931)

Outspoken and Freckled – She Done Him Wrong (1933)

Reel Distracted – The Thomas Crown Affair (1968)

Shadows and Satin – Design for Living (1933)

Girls Do Film – A Streetcar Named Desire (1951)

Portraits by Jenni – Ball of Fire (1941)

thestopbutton.com – Tarzan and His Mate (1934)

Defiant Success – The Long, Hot Summer (1958)

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