Monday, August 27, 2012
I found this photo on eBay a few weeks back and I was stumped, I don’t recall seeing Natalie Moorhead in a movie with Nydia Westman(another one of my favorites), what could this be from? I could barely make out the writing on the back, but I figured it said Cooking Her Goose, so I looked it up and found it was a play by the Duffy Players in San Francisco in 1929. Then I looked it up on eBay and to my amazement I found this program from the play, and in the program there is a little paragraph about Natalie. It says she has been in a few pictures, so this means she was still acting on the stage while in Hollywood, I wonder how much stage work she did after arriving in Hollywood?
Thursday, August 23, 2012
Thursday, June 21, 2012
Here we go again, a movie where Natalie is listed 3rd on the cast list, only to be in the movie for a couple short scenes. To be honest I can’t even say she did a great job, her lines were really short, over all the whole movie was kind of slow, a lot of pauses between lines, it felt awkward. It was a typical Natalie Moorhead movie, William Collier Jr. stars as an amateur boxer with a sweetheart, they get married he makes the big time, starts messing around with Natalie, the couple splits, he dumps Natalie and the couple ends up happy. Like I said typical Natalie playing the bad other woman, she did ok with what she had but other than looking great this movie really didn’t offer much. One thing I found interesting is the outfit she is wearing when we first see her, didn’t I see her wear that same outfit in another boxing movie she did “The Big Chance”? Although this movie is from 1932 and the Big Chance is from 1933, maybe they were being filmed at the same time, then again since both of these movies are poverty row films, maybe she used her own clothes, no one is listed as costume designer, this isn’t the first time she has worn the same dress in multiple films, interesting.
Saturday, June 16, 2012
This was one of Natalie’s last movies, and she was only in it for a few seconds, but she did have a few lines, so not a total waste of time. The funny or sad thing (depends on who you ask) is that Bette Davis is the star, it wasn’t that long ago when the roles were reversed. Supposedly during the filming of “Menace” Natalie and Bette didn’t get along, Bette said Natalie was rude and trying to upstage her. Natalie was the veteran at that time and Bette the up and comer, now in this movie Bette was a super star and Natalie’s career was all but over. This was a period movie, and it was really odd to see Natalie in period clothes and hair style, nothing like the ultra streamlined art deco goddess she was in the early 30’s, but still gorgeous.
Monday, June 11, 2012
What happened between 1940 and 1942 are unclear, but in 1942 she married Chicago Parks Commissioner Robert J. Dunham, they would remained married until his death in 1949. Again it is unclear what she did or where she lived from 1949 to 1957, but in 1957 she married former soccer star and Spanish actor Juan Garchitorena(Torena). They met in the 30’s at the home of Doris Kenyon, and work together at various studios, they somehow got together in the 50’s and were married in Beverly Hills. They traveled and lived in Europe for a time then returned to California and settled in Montecito, a suburb of Santa Barbara. They would remained married until 1983 when Juan Torena died, and Natalie Moorhead would pass away on October 6, 1992, still in Montecito.
Thursday, May 24, 2012
I stumbled upon this book a year ago at a used book store, and when I saw that Natalie was in it, I just had to have it. It’s by James Watters, with photos by the great Horst, who may possibly be the great photographer of all time, I love his work. What a great idea for a book, take photos of old stars now by the same photographer who took their pictures when they were stars in the 30’s, some really great stuff. It was published in 1984 and most of the interviews and photos are from around that year. I am very interested in seeing these stars as they aged, the 30’s were such a glamorous decade(in Hollywood) so seeing how these beautiful women aged without plastic surgery(although some may have had some) is very cool. Some aged well and look almost exactly the same while others just look old, not to be rude, but that’s life. As for Natalie, sadly the interview doesn’t give much insight in what I really want to know, like what has she been doing since 1940. As for her photo, well she looks older, but she looks just like herself, even at 80 years old she is still just as chic and cool. There’s a lot of great stars in this book, like some of my favorites Mary Astor, Sylvia Sidney, Judith Anderson, Claire Trevor, Genevieve Tobin, Frances Dee, Maureen O’Sullivan, Claudette Colbert, Mary Brian, Marsha Hunt, Fay Wray, and Gloria Swanson. It’s a really cool book, if you get a chance to pick up a copy it’s a must have for any old movie fan.
Monday, February 20, 2012
According to a few articles I’ve read this was Natalie’s first movie as a brunette, what a perfect time to change for a movie called Adventurous Blonde. This was one of the fantastic Torchy Blane series that stared the great Glenda Farrell and Barton McLane. One of the best movie series ever made, Glenda Farrell is a sadly forgotten actress, she was one of the best, the series is about Torchy Blane the nosey reporter who keeps solving the crimes before the police, and Barton McLane plays her husband to be and police man. Although all the Torchy Blane movies are the same, there all fun, they are now available trough TCM and I advise everyone to by the set, you won’t be disappointed. Now as for Natalie, she had a bigger role as one of the suspect who murdered a famous actor. It’s always strange seeing her as a brunette, but I thought she looked amazing, and she got to wear some cool clothes, as always she looked like a million bucks. Unlike a lot of her movie, her acting didn’t shine this time, don’t get me wrong she was great as usual, but this being a major studio picture, everyone else was just as good. Her character was much like a lot of her other roles, the other woman, something she did very well, but I will say her break down and cry at the end wasn’t very good, heck even the best make mistake sometimes. Her facial expressions in this movie and most of her others is what sets her apart, they can say so much with out her speaking a word, a lot of 30’s actor/actresses could do this, some may over do it, but when it’s done well it really help the audience feel what the character is feeling. That’s one of the things that help make a mystery movie great is those little expressions, without saying to much it makes the character seem guilty, and makes it harder to figure out who did it, you can watch a person then the role their eyes or do something with there mouth and you say to yourself, ah ha she did it. I love a good fun mystery, there is nothing better than a 1930’s comedy/mystery, from Thin Man to Torchy Blane and many others, they are the best.