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the otto files

where the classics never go out of style

Category Archives: Legendary Actors

It’s hard to imagine Dean Martin as 100. In truth, it was hard to watch Dean get old. He was the living embodiment of the old joke, “If I’d known I was going to live this long, I’d have taken better care of myself.” Except it’s doubtful Dean Martin would have changed anything he did. He […]

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I am part of the TV Generation, the group of kids who literally grew up on television. Radio as a narrative medium was over by the time I came around and video games were still in the future. TV was the center of our cultural universe. That said, most of my contemporaries were obsessed with […]

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Everyone’s favorite bumbling sitcom Nazi would have been 97 years old today. Werner Klemperer was born in Germany on March 22, 1920. His father, Otto Klemperer, was a world famous symphony conductor. The family, which was Jewish, wisely fled Europe in 1935. Werner Klemperer would go on to have a solid and steady career in […]

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Happy Birthday to one of the most talented men in the history of American entertainment! I love Carl Reiner for numerous reasons and projects that he has given the world. Nevertheless, he could have invented the light bulb and I still wouldn’t have been as grateful for that daily necessity as I am for his […]

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If you read through posts on this site it will quickly become obvious that I love character actors and actresses. As of late, I’ve taken to recording birthdays of thespians, musicians, comedians, etc. to salute here on this site, on my Sinatra and Company Facebook page, and on my weekly radio show. Today is a […]

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In honor of Harry Belafonte’s 90th birthday, we celebrate the great entertainer and political activist with a favorite song of mine and Dr. Tim’s!! Harry Belafonte was born in Harlem, New York City in 1927 but spent about eight years of his childhood in Jamaica. Here’s another catchy tune I’ve always liked. This features Harry […]

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I remember seeing Tin Men in the theater many years ago and liking it but I honestly didn’t remember it being this funny. Then again, when I saw it in the theater back in 1987, I was a 23-year-old kid who’d never been married or had children and who just recently had become part of […]

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Oh what a tremendous service Turner Classic Movies provides for the civilized of this nation! Earlier this week TCM ran The Magnificent Yankee, an MGM production from 1950 starring Louis Calhern as Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. and Ann Harding as his wife of 57 years, Fanny Bowditch Holmes. I had never seen this rather obscure film […]

. . . that people actually paid to see these guys at some point? Just when you thought Jerry Lewis was the most annoying, arrogant man in show biz, someone had the bright idea to team him up with Jack Carter. Oy. Trust me, this is hard to watch all the way through. Go ahead […]

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In keeping with old, black and white Hollywood comedies that are just right for Halloween, I offer Rene Clair’s comedy, I Married A Witch. I had DVR-ed the film a while back when it ran on TCM so I could watch it as we got closer to All Hallow’s Eve. It does not disappoint. I’ve […]

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