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Thursday, April 22, 2010

"This Above All" (1942) with Joan

"This Above All", released during World War II, in 1942, stars Joan Fontaine and Tyrone Power.

Joan as Prudence.

Joan plays Prudence Cathaway, a rich woman from a distinguished British family who decides to join the United Kingdom's Women's Auxiliary Air Force. In the service, she meets Clive (Power) who is absent without leave from the British Army. They begin to fall in love, but as she gets to know him, learns of his anti-war views and distain for the rich. He decides to leave as she goes back into service. Prudence's story seems to dominate the first hour, as she joins the air force and then meets Tyrone's Clive. And Clive's story dominates much of the first part of the second hour, finding spiritual inspiration with the council of a clergyman (Alexander Knox, from "Wilson"). But they're love won't keep them apart for long. A real tearjearker ending. Co-starring Gladys Cooper and Thomas Mitchell. Won Oscar for Best Art Direction (B/W), beating out "Random Harvest"(!), "Pride of the Yankees"(!!), and "Magnificent Ambersons"(!!!) Joan is beautiful in this movie with or without a uniform. 25 years old at the time, she gives a wonderful, emotion-filled performance, worthy of an Oscar nomination.

From 20th Century Fox Pictures. Directed by Anatole Litvak ("All This And Heaven Too", "The Snake Pit", "Anastasia"). Produced by Darryl F. Zanuck and Robert Bassler.

At the dinner table, Prudence tells her family she's enlisted in the WAAF

Prudence and other women about to enter service.

Joan and Tyrone have a roll in the hay.

Joan looking beautiful as Prudence, dressed up during her 6-day leave.

Lovely Joan sings "Leave the Home Fires Burning" in an unforgettable scene.

Our stars in a lavish Oscar-winning set. Clive gets a telegram issuing him to come back.

Prudence pleas with reluctant Clive to fight the good fight for England.

Prudence visits Clive in the hospital as bombs go off outside.

"This above all: to thine own self be true, And it must follow, as the night the day, Thou canst not then be false to any man." - William Shakespeare, Hamlet

Also interesting, read the notes about the movie production from Turner Classic Movies.


Christian Jannone said...

She was so pretty ! What a gorgeous woman !

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