Finally! 8:15 Am Thursday August 2nd — on TCM – THE BARBARIAN (1933)
It’s one of those films that could only have been made in the pre-code era. A gigolo Egyptian guide says good-bye to one rich white European tourist lady on the outgoing train, and viola! Here comes another, Myrna Loy… Game. Set. Match Point.
The film is, let’s face it, not that great. But then again, is it any worse than THE MUMMY or MOROCCO? Both of whom it vaguely resembles? And both of those films are AWESOME!
If Zita Johan went off into the Gary Cooper Morocco desert with the Mummy, but he wasn’t the mummy anymore but some Egyptian gypsy prince or whatnot, and add in some 50 SHADES OF GREY UN-PC whipping and dominance head games Stockholm Syndrome romance, well that gives you some of the plot.
And don’t ignore the erotic Myrna Loy bathing scene; it’s approx. as sexy as Claudette Colbert’s milk bath in SIGN OF THE CROSS, which if these things matter to you, is nowhere near as awesome as Maureen O’Sullivan’s underwater nude swimming in TARZAN AND HIS MATE. Frankly I’m ashamed of myself for knowing all these details. And so is Ramon Navarro, or will be, once he’s caught by Myrna’s coterie of harumphing Enlganders (C. Aubrey Smith included) and Myrna’s impatient indefatigably British fiancee (Reginald Denny).
After that is another pre-code woman’s picture from 1933 , WHEN LADIES MEET–it’s the usual triangle stuff, but when Loy’s around it’s always worth watching. Here she’s a liberated novelist unaware it’s her new buddy Ann Harding’s husband she’s stealing (thanks to swine Robert Montgomery) or something. I get these mixed up – all I know is, it’s hella easy to steal a husband from Ann Harding. Nearly every woman in MGM’s stable has stolen a husband from Ann Harding.
But hey! then – later at 2:15 Am – there’s PENTHOUSE (1933 yet again), which makes it all worth it. Loy’s a kind of spy for Warner Baxter and sneaks around a gangster penthouse, or something. I remember only that it rocketh.
Don’t you agree 1933 was the best year for movies… ever?