July 29, 2003

Great White Hope

Sunday evening, consumate entertainer and the celebrity most associated with the USO show of yester-war, Bob Hope passed away in his Toluca Lake home. He was a very impressive 100 years old. Cinecultist knows he's a figure who inspires much nostalgia and reverance for movie-goers of a certain age, but when racking the brain for classic Hope movies to comment on, we could only muster up White Christmas, a sort of passible Americana infused song and dance fest. Which on further research, stars Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye, not Hope. Okay, so we got nothing in terms of Hope memories.

hope.jpgIn search of a more expert opinion, we fired off an e-mail to the original Wilson cinecultists, Phyllis and Red (aka CC's grandparents). Phyllis responds:

We just watched a piece on Hope on PBS. We liked him best in his repartee with Crosby. He wasn't a good actor but good in Beau James and the first Road picture Road To Singapore. I listened to him every week on the radio when Grandpa was overseas for a year and 1/2, and then I'd write his jokes to My love where ever he was.

Isn't that too cute for words? CC feels all buoyed up by the thought of youthful optimism, Hope in the face of hardship and red lipstick paired with seamed stockings.

For the full NY Times coverage, including an audio slide show. TCM offers their obligatory day of Hope movies. Walter Reade has a series already planned, to commemorate Hope's century. that starts Aug. 8. A list of Hope jokes from the Washington Post suitable for sending to your love.

Or, you could rent a CC fav, the Muppet Movie which features a Hope cameo. A true legend understands its important at some point in the career to act with puppets.

Posted by karen at July 29, 2003 10:36 AM