It hadn’t really occurred to us how few Hollywood Golden Age directors we’d covered on the show. In fact, depending on your definition of the Golden Age (this isn’t a science, people), the only one until now has been Billy Wilder.
So when Jess told us she wanted to talk about Vincente Minnelli, it suddenly brought home how much we* had neglected one of the most significant and influential periods of cinema. And what better way to rectify this than with Minnelli, the director behind musicals like An American In Paris and dramas like The Bad and the Beautiful? No one filmmaker better represents the spectrum of Hollywood Golden Age films than he.
But before we get to Minnelli, we also cover some of this month’s new releases: non-Golden Age musical Into the Woods, bleak true-life character study Foxcatcher and postmodern fantasy/comedy/drama Birdman.
As Minnelli’s filmography is quite hefty – thirty-two credited films, plus segments of The Story of Three Loves and Ziegfeld Follies, and uncredited work on four other films – we’ve kept our tradition of ditching the middle segment to make room. Imagine the outcry if we didn’t mention the uncredited work he did on 1957’s The Seventh Sin! (Note: we don’t actually mention that one. Ready your complaint letters.)
* By which we mean our guests, the ones who pick which filmmakers we talk about. Everything is their fault. But they’re great, we love them.