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Comments on old movies from an old and passionate guy

"The Ghost Goes West" - Scottish Romantic Comedy Ghost Story
released on December 17, 1935

The Actors: Robert Donat (Murdoch Glourie and Donald Glourie), Jean Parker (Peggy Martin), Eugene Pallette (Mr. Joe Martin), Elsa Lanchester (Miss Shepperton), Ralph Bunker (Ed L. Bigelow), Patricia Hilliard (Shephard girl), Everley Gregg (Mrs. Gladys Martin), Morton Selten (The Glourie), Chili Bouchier (Cleopatra), Mark Daly (Murdoch's groom), Herbert Lomas (Fergus), Elliott Mason (Mrs. MacNiff), Hay Petrie (The McLaggen), Quentin McPhearson (Mackaye), Peter Cozens (unknown), Syd Crossley (unknown), Richard Fraser (son of MacLaggen), David Keir (creditor), Jack Lambert (Son of MacLaggen), Colin Lesslie (Son of MacLaggen), Neil Lester (Son of MacLaggen), J. Neil More (Son of MacLaggen), Victor Rietti (scientist), Arthur Seaton (creditor), Terry-Thomas (unknown)

I'll Ask You A Riddle . . .

The Ghost Goes WestLong ago in the Scottish Highlands the McLaggen clan was off to war with the British, and they laughed at old man Glourie, whose son would rather riddle the ladies and steal kisses than go fight the British. Old man Glourie was so mad at this that he vowed to them that his son would not only be off to fight the British, but would first do something even more important . . . he would fight and conquer the McLaggen clan first, boasting that one Glourie was worth 50 McLaggen men. Well, it didn't quite work out that way, and when playboy Murdoch Glourie was killed by an errant cannonball from the McLaggen's, he was stopped on his way to Heaven by his father and forbidden to enter his eternal resting place until he would fight and beat the McLaggen boys. He must haunt the hallways of Glourie Castle at midnight every night until the day that he could fight and beat a McLaggen. Now we fast forward a couple hundred years to the year 1935, and the wealthy daughter of an American grocery store chain wants papa to purchase the castle and move it to Florida for her. Donald Glourie, ancestor of ghost Murdoch, played by Robert Donat, agrees to sell the castle and go with the Americans to Florida and oversee the re-construction of his ancestral home. He falls in love with the daughter, played by Jean Parker, but she keeps being put off because she meets both the ghost of Murdoch and the present day Donald Glourie, and thinks that they are one and the same. The problem comes because playboy Murdoch, always smooth with the women, enchants Peggy and she falls for him, thinking that he is Donald . . . But when Donald tries to show his feelings for Peggy he fumbles and does everything wrong, causing Peggy to get angry and put him off. So, anyway, this leads to that and on the night of the grand opening of the Glourie Castle in sunny Florida it all comes to a head when ghost Murdoch finally appears to the crowd and discovers that the last of the McLaggen clan is in the room . . . Panic, chaos, ghostly horrors and final retribution are all at hand for the grand Glourie Clan and ghost Murdoch Glourie . . . Pop a big bowl of white kernel popcorn with plenty of warm melted butter drizzled over it and enjoy the show.

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Make them laugh, make them cry, and back to laughter. What do people want to go to the theatre for? An emotional exercise . . . Mary Pickford

Some of my Favorites:

William Powell and Carole LombardProbably my all time favorite movie, My Man Godfrey in 1936 not only gives us an comedic peek at the wealthiest and poorest during the Great Depression, but also was the vehicle for Carole Lombard to create the movie icon of the 'dumb blonde screwball comedy' that is a popular theme even today.

Barbara Stanwyck and Gary CooperMeet John Doe - 1941: The Frank Capra classic set in the Great Depression era that pits the common man against the political masters. You can't be a fan of old movies until you watch Frank Capra's old movies. This one premiered seventy years ago, and it still stirs our emotions and thoughts now. It is as timely as if it were produced today.

John Wayne and Gail Russell in Angel and the Bad ManAngel and the Bad Man - 1947: One of the great teachers of the Secret Law of Attraction is Dr. Joe Vitale . . . but before he was even born actor John Wayne paid for and produced this Cowboy Western that featured The Law of Attraction.

James Cagney in The Time of Your LifeThe Time of Your Life - 1948: James Cagney financed this strangely different feel-good movie, and he plays the part of Joe, a barfly that tries to live his life by making everyone around him better. I watch this one often, and try to become more like Joe every day.

Joe E. Brown in Painted FacesPainted Faces - 1929: Comedy legend Joe E. Brown is a circus clown in a surprisingly serious role as a juror in a Christmas week murder trial who tells the other jurors a story that will change their verdicts in a pre-code drama that could not have been made a few years later.

Cary Grant and Audry Hepburn in CharadeCharade - 1963: It doesn't get much better than Cary Grant and Audry Hepburn in a tale of death, deception, spies and lost wealth as a woman tries to sort out the good guys from the bad guys in this cold-war spy thriller love story.

Thanks largely to Ted Turner and his purchase of the movies from MGM, United Artists and pre-1950 movies from Warner Brothers, those motion pictures are not in danger if disappearing, and should live forever on the Turner Classic Movie cable television channel. Unfortunately many of the movies from smaller motion picture companies have already disappeared and become almost impossible to find and enjoy. Many of these movies are in the public domain, and without an 'owner' to preserve them are becoming more and more rare. This web site is a labor of love by one passionate old movie buff with the goal of sharing public domain movies with the world so that they can live on with new generations of fans. If you find an error or factual mistake, please use the contact page to let me know so that I can correct it for everyone else. This web site celebrates the efforts of every actor - not just the stars - because like a grand stew, each actor adds a unique flavor to the film, and without any of them the movie would not be the same. If you are one of these actors, or a friend or family member of an actor, please send me any anecdotes and stories that you know about any of them, and I will gladly add them to the site to enrich our knowledge about that actor or the movie they played in.