Friday, October 1, 2010

Some Still Like It Hot

by Pa Rock
Movie Aficionado

I awoke this morning to a "tweet" that Tony Curtis had died in Las Vegas at the age of eighty-five - and with his passing one more glimmer disappears from the golden age of Hollywood.

Tony Curtis was little more than a kid when he served in World War II.   After the war he took acting lessons and got into the movie business where he could capitalize on his good looks and quick wit.   He had several fine roles over the next fifty years, but it was his portrayal of Joe "Josephine" in 1959's Some Like It Hot that  defined him as a great comic actor and put the shine on his star.

I have seen Some Like It Hot several times over the years.  The movie played at the Ozark Theatre in Noel, MO, shortly after it was released.  My mother really wanted to see it, and she talked me into going with her.  I was just getting out of sixth grade at the time.    Some Like It Hot was funny then, and it's funny now.

There is no point in rehashing the plot, because this is a movie that everyone knows.  I even owned a copy for awhile, back when VCR tapes were in vogue.  In 2008 a friend and I went to San Diego and stayed at the del Cornado Hotel where all of the "Florida" scenes were filmed.  We drifted upstairs one evening and walked around the older section of the grand hotel trying to find the room where Sugar (Marilyn Monroe) stayed.  Later that same year my daughter Molly was married on the beach behind the del Coronado, the same beach where Tony and Marilyn and Jack Lemmon had frolicked in the sand and sun a half a century earlier.

The del Coronado boasts several ghosts in residence.  I suspect that three very happy ones are out playing on the beach this evening and reliving the summer of 1959.  May they have a joyous reunion!

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