Last night Michèle Morgan was on TCM in Higher and Higher, and had the Siren not already seen the star in things like René Clair's deliciously romantic Les Grandes Manoeuvres and The Fallen Idol she might never have wanted to hear of Morgan again. Having seen what Morgan could do with a good script, the Siren can only conclude that when the actress was assigned Higher and Higher she just said there was no putting any rouge à lèvres on this cochon. Despite a couple of cute scenes the movie is a stinker, and Frank Sinatra, here in his first full role, at this time was so bad an actor he couldn't even play himself. The Siren would not be mentioning the movie at all if it weren't for wanting to bump the picture of Joseph Breen down the page a bit. Michèle is much easier on the eyes, yes?
In an interview in the 1960s Morgan confessed that she had always wanted to be a great international star and her failure to make it in Hollywood was a disappointment. But to anyone who's seen Quai des Brumes, a great star is what she always will be. Morgan was a Leap Year baby, born Feb. 29, 1920, and is still alive and well and even attended the Césars a couple of years back when her companion of fifty years, the late director Gérard Oury, was honored. The Siren salutes her.
The Siren was dealt a cruel blow last week when Flickhead decided to close up his blog. His support and encouragement in the early days of the Siren's blog meant more than he probably knows. Ray is the reason the Siren keeps renting movie after movie by Claude Chabrol. Flickhead is a wonderful writer and he will continue to maintain his larger site, so all is not lost.
And Matt Zoller Seitz, a critic for whom no praise is adequate, has also decided to quit the blogosphere as well, to pursue filmmaking. While we can ill afford to lose good critics, there is perhaps an even greater dearth of intelligent, witty and compassionate directors, so the Siren finds comfort here too. And the House Next Door is now in the good care of Keith Uhlich, so that site will continue to be indispensable. Keith has just inaugurated a regular Monday column, so there is that to look forward to as well.
Finally, Marilyn of Ferdy on Film is running the Invitation to the Dance blogathon this week. Has there ever been a more enchanting topic? As she is for most invitations ever since the twins were born half a decade ago, the Siren is running late. But she's gobbling up the entries in this one, so take a look.