TAGGED WITH ACE IN THE HOLE

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Billy Wilder's Œuvre Total, Part 3

Every writer, I think, has a natural triptych to their writing, whether they know it or not;  never mind whether they admit it or not.  And — never mind finding it or not - looking for Billy Wilder’s is one of the things that makes him endure.  Look at this, from his childhood.  When asked if he got his sense of humor from trying to make his mother laugh: She was a very tough laugh.  My father was a rather easy laugh.  My father had kind of everyday humor.  He, for...
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Oeuvre Total Part 4: The World Aflame

“Nobody’s perfect.”It’s one of the great European last lines, and it hangs on one of the great American movies. But it’s not the end of the picture.As Michael Holland nimbly illustrated in Part 3 last week, that last line transports Some Like It Hot. Seconds ago, in the same shot, Joe E Brown’s smitten Osgood was finally on the getaway with the object of his affection when he got slapped with the news that Jack Lemmon wasn’t Daphne but Jerry in drag.And after all Osgood and ...
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Oeuvre Total Part 6: Billy Wilder, Giant Killer

 - cowboys - In an election year you hear a lot of history. A recent statement that the White House was built by slaves was rebutted with the astonishing assertion that those slaves were fed and housed. This kind of dialogue marks the periodic ebbs in our national discourse.Every single American election year, our people tell us that, historically, this is the wrong year to take a moral stand; that this time, a vote for anyone but our factory-fresh candidate (we already printe...