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Crime Novel Remembered: Everywoman Heroine & Bourgeois Values + 'Straight & Gay' Movie Versions

Crime novel The Blank Wall by Elisabeth Sanxay Holding. While her husband is away during World War II, housewife Lucia Holley – the sort of “Everywoman” who looks great in a two-piece bathing suit – does whatever it takes to protect the feeling of “normality” in her bourgeois, suburban household. The Blank Wall is a classic depiction of an attempted cover-up being much more serious than the actual crime. Sound bites: Remembering the classic crime novel 'The Blank Wall' and its two movie adaptations – 'The Reckless Moment' & 'The Deep End' Crime novel writer Elisabeth Sanxay Holding (1889–1955) is not a name familiar to many, and yet Raymond Chandler described her as “the top suspense writer of them all. […]


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Crime Novel Remembered: Everywoman Heroine & Bourgeois Values + 'Straight & Gay' Movie Versions



How to Be a Latin Lover: Ricardo Cortez & Leading Ladies + Marriage to Tragic Drug-Addicted Hollywood Star

How to be a Latin Lover: Ricardo Cortez, formerly known as Jacob Krantz from a working-class family of Austrian/Hungarian immigrants that had settled in New York City, succeeded in restyling himself as the next – even if, according to some, “second rank” – Rudolph Valentino. It's unclear whether or not the Italian-born Valentino, who died at age 31 in 1926, would have survived the coming of sound. Cortez, of course, did – but at a price. No longer getting the star buildup at Famous Players-Lasky/Paramount, in the early 1930s he became a contract player at the recently formed and relatively minor RKO, which featured him in series of mostly undistinguished programmers. A move to Warner Bros. in 1933 should have […]


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How to Be a Latin Lover: Ricardo Cortez & Leading Ladies + Marriage to Tragic Drug-Addicted Hollywood Star



'Latin Lover' - The 2nd Valentino & 1st (and Best) Sam Spade: Q&A with Ricardo Cortez Biographer Dan Van Neste

“Latin Lover” Ricardo Cortez, who went on to play a series of all-American scoundrels and criminals, in addition to similar unsavory types of other nationalities. Although never as big a star as fellow silent era screen heartthrobs Rudolph Valentino, Ramon Novarro, and John Gilbert – or fellow Pre-Code era antiheroes Edward G. Robinson and James Cagney – Cortez had a long and, to some extent, prestigious film career, appearing in nearly 100 movies between 1923 and 1950. Among his directors were “Father of American Cinema” D.W. Griffith and Paramount's star filmmaker Cecil B. DeMille, in addition to eventual Oscar winners and nominees Frank Lloyd, Herbert Brenon, Gregory La Cava, William A. Wellman, Frank Capra, Walter Lang, Michael Curtiz, John Ford, […]


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'Latin Lover' - The 2nd Valentino & 1st (and Best) Sam Spade: Q&A with Ricardo Cortez Biographer Dan Van Neste