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Don Murray, 94 (co-starred in the 1956 movie "Bus Stop" with...)
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Lenona
2024-02-02 20:49:51 UTC
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Need I say who it was, if you're a fan of hers?

About the movie, from Wikipedia:

"A naive, unintelligent, socially inept, loud-mouth cowboy, Beauregard Decker, and his friend and father-figure Virgil Blessing take the bus from Timber Hill, Montana to Phoenix, Arizona, to participate in a rodeo. Virgil has encouraged the 21-year-old virgin, Beau, to take an interest in "gals". Initially reluctant and frightened of the idea, Beau declares that he hopes to find an "angel" and will know her when he sees her. Making trouble everywhere they go, he continues his unsophisticated behavior in Grace's Diner. In Phoenix, at the Blue Dragon Café, he imagines himself in love with the café's chanteuse, Chérie, an ambitious performer from the Ozarks with aspirations of becoming a Hollywood star. Her rendition of "That Old Black Magic" entrances him and he forces her outside, despite the establishment's rules against it, kisses her and thinks that means they are engaged. Chérie is physically attracted to him but resists his plans to take her back to Montana. She has no intention of marrying him and tells him so, but he is too stubborn to listen..."


I must say, he had quite a range as far as his roles went!

https://www.nytimes.com/2024/02/02/movies/don-murray-dead.html

...In the postwar 1950s, when being sensitive, responsible and a “nice guy” were important attributes in a young man, Mr. Murray was a churchgoing pacifist who became a conscientious objector during the Korean War. He fulfilled his service obligation by working for two and a half years in German and Italian refugee camps for $10 a month, assisting orphans, the injured and the displaced.

Back from Europe in 1954, he settled on an acting career focused on socially responsible themes. He appeared in a television drama about lawyers serving poor clients, and he had a part in the 1955 Broadway production of “The Skin of Our Teeth,” Thornton Wilder’s comedic vote of confidence in mankind’s narrow ability to survive, which starred Helen Hayes and Mary Martin.



...“With a wondrous new actor named Don Murray playing the stupid, stubborn poke and with the clutter of broncos, blondes and busters beautifully tangled, Mr. Logan has a booming comedy going before he gets to the romance,” Bosley Crowther wrote in a review for The New York Times. “And the fact that she fitfully but firmly summons the will and strength to humble him — to make him say ‘please,’ which is the point of the whole thing — attests to her new acting skill.”

Mr. Murray’s performance in “Bus Stop” earned him an Oscar nomination for best supporting actor. He won many other honors for a body of work that included more than 35 Hollywood films, some 25 television movies and scores of other credits for starring in television and stage productions, as well as for writing, directing or producing for movies and television. But he was never again nominated for an Academy Award.

His best-known early films also included “A Hatful of Rain” (1957), the story of a tormented drug addict hiding his secret from his wife, played by Eva Marie Saint; “Shake Hands With the Devil” (1959), a tale of the 1921 Irish rebellion, which also starred James Cagney; and “The Hoodlum Priest” (1961), in which Mr. Murray, who co-wrote the screenplay, portrayed a Jesuit who counsels former convicts...

(snip)

He was also in "Advise and Consent."

https://www.imdb.com/name/nm0614916/
radioacti...@gmail.com
2024-02-02 23:01:45 UTC
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Notwithstanding the Oscar nom, after repeated "Bus Stop" screenings over the years, I've always found the handsome but late Don Murray quite unnecessarily over-the-top as that yahoo rodeo character...and neither was it one of Marilyn Monroe's better performances, either. (Those would be "Niagara", "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes" and "The Misfits", in my view--and I believe I've seen every film she made.)

And Don Murray WAS notably one of the MANY subtle charms of the cinematic iteration of Allen Drury's even better novel of U.S. Senate intrigue, "Advise & Consent".

Appreciate your posting of this, Lenona. (Do you still ever sign your name "Lenona." ?

BRYAN STYBLE/Florida
Lenona
2024-02-03 20:06:09 UTC
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Notwithstanding the Oscar nom, after repeated "Bus Stop" screenings over the years, I've always found the handsome but late Don Murray quite unnecessarily over-the-top as that yahoo rodeo character...and neither was it one of Marilyn Monroe's better performances, either. (Those would be "Niagara", "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes" and "The Misfits", in my view--and I believe I've seen every film she made.)
And Don Murray WAS notably one of the MANY subtle charms of the cinematic iteration of Allen Drury's even better novel of U.S. Senate intrigue, "Advise & Consent".
Appreciate your posting of this, Lenona. (Do you still ever sign your name "Lenona." ?
BRYAN STYBLE/Florida
Maybe I should (I haven't been doing that) - it would give me an extra excuse to put extra space at the bottom, which has suddenly become necessary in the last month or so, if one wants to make a whole post legible!

I assume it has to do with Google Groups?

Btw, in his book "The Celluloid Closet," Vito Russo mentioned "Advise and Consent" on six pages. (Only three of those six pages are truly pertinent, IIRC.)
Lenona
2024-02-03 20:08:35 UTC
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Oh, and I was surprised that they still haven't mentioned his death on the broadcast TV news - at least, not as of this morning.

I'll be VERY disappointed if they don't...
radioacti...@gmail.com
2024-02-03 22:39:30 UTC
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Re the lack of Don Murray obits in video media:

Well, Lenona, you didn't factor in that the media has that never-ending blizzard of Taylor Swift news to breathlessly "report"; thus just no airtime for newly-dead actors from the '50s and '60s, even if they were once nominated for an Oscar.

Yep, that's where we are in post-St. George of Floyd's America during this 2020s decade. (Though I realize you Canadians--you ARE from up north, no? [kindly correct me if I'm confusing you with some other Canadian poster herein]--don't much appreciate being grouped with us in the USA.)

Oh, a word of advice if you hope to remain culturally relevant this decade: go get a bunch of tattoos (better yet, hideous ones) on your neck and face. Should better your chances of getting an invite to the Emmys or Oscars parties this year. (Wonder how long before one of Swift's hiphop-hip posse is gonna convince HER to tattoo, say, an anchor or cross or platypus on her as-yet ink-free face?)

BRYAN STYBLE/Florida
Lenona
2024-02-04 20:52:26 UTC
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Post by ***@gmail.com
Well, Lenona, you didn't factor in that the media has that never-ending blizzard of Taylor Swift news to breathlessly "report"; thus just no airtime for newly-dead actors from the '50s and '60s, even if they were once nominated for an Oscar.
Yep, that's where we are in post-St. George of Floyd's America during this 2020s decade. (Though I realize you Canadians--you ARE from up north, no? [kindly correct me if I'm confusing you with some other Canadian poster herein]--don't much appreciate being grouped with us in the USA.)
Oh, a word of advice if you hope to remain culturally relevant this decade: go get a bunch of tattoos (better yet, hideous ones) on your neck and face. Should better your chances of getting an invite to the Emmys or Oscars parties this year. (Wonder how long before one of Swift's hiphop-hip posse is gonna convince HER to tattoo, say, an anchor or cross or platypus on her as-yet ink-free face?)
BRYAN STYBLE/Florida
We MAY have no way of knowing how many of those tattoos (on strangers, that is) are temporary - i.e., washable.

But I wonder why they don't SEEM to be a lot more common - if they were, we'd hear more about that.

In the meantime, I dutifully watched CBS Sunday Morning (they always have an In Memoriam piece).

No luck. Plus, I couldn't believe whom they DID choose to show...hint, she was 98.

See here:

https://www.cbsnews.com/video/passage-in-memoriam-2-4-2024/
(1:13 minutes)

Then again, since Norman Jewison was included, 15 days after his death (who knows why it took so long), maybe we just need to wait another week or two?
Lenona
2024-02-13 16:17:58 UTC
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Post by Lenona
In the meantime, I dutifully watched CBS Sunday Morning (they always have an In Memoriam piece).
No luck. Plus, I couldn't believe whom they DID choose to show...hint, she was 98.
https://www.cbsnews.com/video/passage-in-memoriam-2-4-2024/
(1:13 minutes)
Then again, since Norman Jewison was included, 15 days after his death (who knows why it took so long), maybe we just need to wait another week or two?
I watched again this Sunday. Yes, Murray was included. Check out the others, too.

https://www.cbs.com/shows/video/JxsCtFoiqq9eP2rqsZr2Cq33kP9_qd3p/
Lenona
2024-02-04 21:38:08 UTC
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Notwithstanding the Oscar nom, after repeated "Bus Stop" screenings over the years, I've always found the handsome but late Don Murray quite unnecessarily over-the-top as that yahoo rodeo character...and neither was it one of Marilyn Monroe's better performances, either. (Those would be "Niagara", "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes" and "The Misfits", in my view--and I believe I've seen every film she made.)
Forgot to say that I remember very little of "Niagara," since I only saw it once, in 1991.

I DO remember that, once it was over and the patrons were leaving, a man muttered to his friend: "What Hitchcock could have done with that..."

Anyway, since I only saw two other movies of Henry Hathaway's besides "Niagara" (they were "Kiss of Death" and "Lives of a Bengal Lancer") I looked him up.

"The House on 92nd Street" sounds like something people SHOULD see!

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0037795/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1

Or so said Leonard Maltin, anyway - he gave it 3.5 out of 4 stars.
Bill Smith
2024-02-05 01:34:34 UTC
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He came back with his first role in 16 years in 2017's reboot of Twin Peaks, and now is among fellow deceased cast members of that show - Miguel Ferrer, Robert Forster, Peggy Lipton, Catherine Coulson, Harry Dean Stanton, Walter Olkewicz, Julee Cruise.
radioacti...@gmail.com
2024-02-05 02:32:09 UTC
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Appreciate your response, Lenona.

WELL: If (1) you're Canadian (as I recall you being, correct?); (2) have only seen "Niagara" ONCE (and 30 years ago at that!) and (3) can't remember much of it, WELL, you sure owe it to yourself to catch it again.

And this time tape it, because like most terrific cinematic efforts, it's filled with nuance and thus warrants stopping here and there to review key scenes. Me, I've watched it at least eight or nine times since first seeing it circa 1978, and it NEVER fails to compel me. And I USUALLY find things I've missed (or at least forgot that I first noticed on my third or fourth time through sometime in the 1990s.)

As I pointed out in my "Groundhog Day" posting (complaining about it not being shot where it's set in western Pennsylvania), I'm a big one for filming ON ACTUAL location ANYTIME when the locale is central to the plot. Thus, one of the MANY charms of "Niagara" is how you've got the planet's hands-down most spectacular* liquid cataracts right behind the actors for much of the film. (Now, there MAY have been some interiors shot out in Hollywood, but I wouldn't be surprised if the whole shebang was done right there on the USA/Canada border by western New York.)

In any event, what's REALLY so great isn't the background, but rather its ACTING:

For my money the always-credible Joseph Cotton's finest work EVER (as a troubled fellow, ever-tormented by the fact that every other man he's met since he got married is trying to steal his wife away);

And Monroe herself for once NOT vamping it up, but instead infusing her role with verbal AND facial-expression nuance, not normally one of her attributes;

Now, Casey Adams (also later known as Max Showalter) is a bit much admittedly (as he almost ALWAYS was in the scads of small parts he had here and there in the '50s and '60s), but Jean Peters** as HIS wife keeps Adams's excited-overdoing it from messing things up, as he might have otherwise.

Meanwhile, in a minor role you've ALSO got as Adams's boss, Jack Benny's longtime radio/TV announcer Don Wilson***.

PLUS: one of North America's few carillons--there's only about 30 of 'em on our entire continent****, Lenona!--figures crucially in the plot.

All told, this is TOP-NOTCH '50s film noir, but thank G-d it's not in monochrome, but rather in strikingly vibrant color. And it's on TCM often, but you won't have to wait till it rolls around every six months or so; it's available on YouTube for free, though not in the most pristine of copies.

Again, the Horseshoe Falls are my absolute favorite part of the earth's second-largest (in area) country Canada, so you owe it to your countrymen to behold the greatest cinematic tribute to arguably the planet's greatest natural wonder. (Now, hole-in-the-ground partisans might argue The Grand Canyon beats it, but I was visually disappointed every time I've been there; sorry Arizona boosters! Besides, there'd be ZERO POINT in rolling down in the Canyon in a barrel, agreed?)

BRYAN STYBLE/Florida
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* Neither [South America's] Angel Falls nor [Africa's] Victoria Falls (nor what I'm informed are several thousand small falls(es?) throughout huge Yellowstone Park), rate as natural wonders in even REMOTELY in the class of that Rose Bowl [i.e., "the granddaddy"] of ALL waterfalls, the three cascades constituting Niagara--Horseshoe, American and little Bridal Veil). AND throughout this wonderful film you get to see what Niagara looked like in the early 1950s, before a LOT of that plunging water was channelled off for power plants, making the lingering mist MUCH less thick these nowadays.
** Whom, TRY AS I MIGHT, I always conflate with her similarly-named lookalike/soundalike contemporary, Jean Simmons--they WERE two different ladies, right?
*** You may recall his jolly advertising catchphrase open from the Benny TV show: "Jello, again!"
**** But ANOTHER of those 30 or so carillons scattered around our continent happens to be right down here in The Sunshine State; it's in the Tampa Bay Area in Clearwater...and the fellow managing the religious instillation where it's installed actually let me (during a 2014 visit) climb up there, sit down at its keyboard and then play a few chords for everyone in the neighborhood to hear--I kid you not!
Lenona
2024-02-05 15:14:24 UTC
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Post by ***@gmail.com
Appreciate your response, Lenona.
WELL: If (1) you're Canadian (as I recall you being, correct?)
Er, no. Not sure how you got that idea.

Anyway, I visited Niagara Falls once - on both sides of the border - and while I got to go on the boat (you have to wear a rain poncho), the tunnel was not open at the time.

https://www.thrillist.com/news/new-york/115-year-old-tunnel-niagara-falls-opens

Also, for anyone who is considering going, be aware that there are several places where any dumb, unsupervised kid - or adult - could easily fall in and get swept OVER the falls - not just at the bottom.

(It's incredible how many parents seem to think that even places like the Grand Canyon should be fenced in...)
radioacti...@gmail.com
2024-02-06 20:06:15 UTC
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Sorry, Lenona, for mentally--and erroneously--placing you somewhere up in the Dominion of Canada, instead of down here in the USA (or whereever you in fact are); maybe I thought a lot of your interesting children's-lit author obit postings seemed to be Canadian, and I conflated that.

ANYWAY:
Schoolteacher Annie Taylor decided to celebrate her 63rd birthday on Thursday, October 24, 1901 as an improbable pioneer, the first to survive Niagara's Horseshoes Falls, riding down inside a plunging barrel. She became a minor celebrity, but never made much lot money out of her remarkable stunt. But she did inspire many to try to duplicate the feat in her (figurative AND literal!) wake, most of whom died in the process going over the Horseshoe Falls.

Meanwhile, only one guy in history, some years later, ever dared to attempt the barrel ride over the adjacent AMERICAN Falls, which have many tons--again, LITERALLY as well as figuratively!--of huge boulders awaiting anyone trying THAT; I can't find his name, nor the year he attempted it. (To no one's surprise--except maybe himself--he was killed instantly, and no one has tried THAT route since, nor seems ever likely to again; after all, daredevils tend to be crazed, but not necessarily crazy.)

NOW:

I'm quite envious of you, Lenona, for you report that you took the famous Maid of the Mist boat ride around the Niagara basin; I first visited Niagara in 1964 with my brother and parents enroute from St. Louis to the 1964-65 New York World's Fair, but my mother vigorously vetoed any Maid of the Mist family boat ride, and on my several subsequent Niagara visits on my own since, I've STILL yet to ride The Maid! But if I ever drive up to Niagara again, this time I'll be sure to don the raincoat slicks and the floppy hat and board The Maid of the Mist boat for what must be one of the most remarkable experiences anywhere on the planet.

NOW: as to your prudent caveat for every Niagara Falls tourist, Lenona:

Your warning isn't merely to be sternly heeded, but in fact no fewer than four people over the decades have reportedly somehow survived an unprotected, unexpected ride over the Horseshoe Falls. (Not that even a steel barrel--much less the JET-SKI that one guy infamously tried!--is much "protection", mind you.) One of those surviving four was, I gather, a teen who eventually (if I recall, and I think I do) made it onto the Letterman show to recount to Dave surviving his remarkable accident. (One of those more recent other ones is described in a local news report without authorities releasing his name, and it's one of those linked videos below.)

Meanwhile, even that celebrated recording artist with the funny nose, the funnier hair and the funniest voice would at least LYRICALLY get in on all this daredevil fun with "Man of Peace", a rollicking tune on his 1983 "Infidels' album, a Satan-centered rock-tempo song containing these lines:

Well, he can be fascinating, he can be dull;
He can ride down Niagara Falls
In the barrels of your skull ! ...
You know, Satan sometimes comes
As a man of peace!

[For my own inconsequential part, I consider Satan to be as fictive a character as there is anywhere in either The Old OR The New Testament...but I sure enjoyed it every time over the last few decades that I've listened to that wild tune (audio also linked below).]

BRYAN STYBLE/Florida
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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Annie_Edson_Taylor
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https://www.niagarafallslive.com/daredevils_of_niagara_falls.htm#:~:text=A%20Greek%20waiter%20named%20George,for%20more%20than%2014%20hours.&text=Nathan%20Boya%20drops%20off%20the%20brink%20in%20a%20ball%2Dlike%20contraption.
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https://www.bobdylan.com/songs/man-peace/ [lyrics only]
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"Man of Peace" on INFIDELS in 1983:


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Bill Smith
2024-02-05 01:33:25 UTC
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She came back with his first role in 16 years in 2017's reboot of Twin Peaks, and now is among fellow deceased cast members of that show - Miguel Ferrer, Robert Forster, Peggy Lipton, Catherine Coulson, Harry Dean Stanton, Walter Olkewicz, Julee Cruise.
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