Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Luise Rainer [1910-2014]

[ Luise Rainer ]

I was distraught to receive an email yesterday morning from my good friend Ryan with only this in the subject line: Luise Rainer. I knew what that meant. The beautiful and spirited actress who won back-to-back Best Actress Oscars in the 1930s had died. It's not that I was surprised, since she was 104 years old, but it just seems that if a person is going to live to be 104, then they might as well just go on living to 150. Ms. Rainer, who I became somewhat obsessed with back in 2009, was one of very few movie stars from Hollywood's Golden Era of the 1930s who was still living here on Earth. If you haven't seen Rainer's Oscar-winning performances in THE GREAT ZIEGFELD (1936) or THE GOOD EARTH (1937), I suggest you check them out. THE GREAT WALTZ (1938) is also pretty good.

While you've gotta' admire Luise Rainer for having the strength of character to stand up to MGM studio head Louis B. Mayer, walking away from Hollywood stardom instead of letting MGM control her life, it's a shame that Meyer was such a dick. Why not just give this talented young lady some more meaty roles to play and keep her around for another 40 or 50 pictures? It sure would be a treat to have at least a few more Luise Rainer movies available to watch today. You can find Rainer's obituary in the NY Times here, read more about her life and career here, and go here to listen to a piece about the actress on NPR.

Luise Rainer
[ January 12, 1910 — December 30, 2014 ]
We will miss you, Luise.

No comments: