Thursday, June 20, 2013

"Quiet on The Set!"

Mesquite Drive-in theater * Jacksboro, TX * photo by Suzanne * June 13, 2013

In the heat of the steamy August evening,  they remembered the hot, yet, exciting Saturday nites at the drive-in picture show in the 1950's.  Young teenagers, piled into cars, six to eight in one car, girls in their halter tops and shorts...boys in their blue jeans and t-shirts with the sleeves rolled up.  Back then, they could enter the grounds at one dollar per car!  What a great time it was..they were out for the nite and ready for anything!   And, they would gossip prematurely about the movie they were about to see, and how their favorite actors and actresses would come across on the open-air screen.  

There would be Elvis in 1958, as a teen in 'King Creole' (my favorite Elvis movie).  This movie awarded Elvis one of his best acting roles.  Plenty of teen boys could identify with this movie, high school dropouts, hanging around in gangs and committing small-time petty  crimes.  And, the girls, looking for the right boy in all of the confusion between good and bad.  There were those teens with big dreams for an exciting and successful life, but not quite knowing how to acquire those dreams.  And all were surrounded by societal wolves,  beckoning and luring them towards their dens of  hard knocks, that could only result in trouble and heart break.

1955...'Rebel Without a Cause'-Whoa! James Dean plays a mixed up, emotional and rebellious teenager.  Have we been there?  I think so, but, only to a point!  However, I don't recall in my lifetime and teenage years, knowing, or being involved with such a group of troubled kids-this film really projects an extreme view of  how a teen's life can change day by day.  I can't even begin to express my reactions to this movie in just a few words, so, how about 'SCARY'!  This movie was up for 3 academy awards, but, James Dean was not nominated in this role.  I believe that most of us who saw this film, were more enamered by the actors and the rebellious ideas that were presented-James Dean, the gorgeous 'bad boy', Sal Mineo, the weak introvert follower, and, Natalie Wood, the lovely rebel 'wannabe'.  This movie was based on an actual case study, and book written by Dr. Robert Lindner in 1944.  It was a factual book titled 'Rebel Without a Cause'. 
 Of course, in 1955, most of us weren't even ten years old yet, and had to wait a few years to see this movie.
My gosh!  You just let me blab on and on...give me another inch!

Last Thursday Karo and I took a road trip just for the day (it's ok, I did have the day off work!).  We traveled a bit over 100 miles one way to the west of Fort Worth, through some small towns.  One such town is called Archer City, which is where we got off!

~photo by Suzanne * June 13, 2013

I guess the main attraction in this town is a bookstore and a movie theater.  Archer City, Texas is the town in  which the movie, 'The Last Picture Show' was filmed.  And, the author, Larry McMurtry, grew up on a ranch just outside of Archer City.  Mr. McMurtry wrote this book as a semi-autobiography, based on some of the events of his own life as a teenager.  'The Last Picture Show' was filmed in black and white in 1971, in order to lend a more realistic perception of the 1950's in this small town.  Jeff Bridges, Cybill Shepherd,  Ben Johnson, Cloris Leachman, Timothy Bottoms, and various others were cast in this film.  It was nominated for 8 academy awards.  Cloris Leachman and Ben Johnson won awards for best supporting actress and actor respectively.  If you have seen this movie, you know it is a story about teens coming of age, and, striving to find their places in this small, waning town in the early 1950s.  

Karo and I had seen 'The Last Picture Show' on television a couple of weeks before, and that stirred our interest in the town.  As you can see from the sign, the population of Archer City is a mere 1,848...I mean, this is the current sign as you head into town.  

And here is the movie theater used in the film.  It is named 'Royal', and,  this theater is no longer open.    There is no news that it will open again in the future.

 ~photos by Suzanne * June 13, 2013

This is one of the bookstores owned by author, Larry McMurtry, in Archer City, TX, that carried various books along with his book, 'The Last Picture Show'.  Mr. McMurtry owned four bookstores, and, I believe, the only one open at this time is "Booked Up Inc. No. 1."  This author also wrote ''Lonesome Dove" and co-wrote the screenplay for 'Brokeback Mountain'.
~The author and pulitzer prize winner, Larry McMurtry now resides in Houston, Texas.

By the way-if anyone is interested, the movie, "The Last Picture Show" will be showing on TV tomorrow (Friday) nite on the local movie channel.  Ours is KDFIDT2, or 27.  Oh, I don't know...I'll just say it's on at 9:35pm, Texas time!

I Got Help from:
Karo-thank you for the fun day trip to Archer City!
Archer City
Larry McMurtry, author

***  My dearest readers, thank you so much for traveling thru the reel to reel of the KardKorner!  I always enjoy your visits, and encourage you to stop by and say hello any time.  If it's hot and muggy where you live, please use caution in the heat...hey, you could stay cool indoors, and  read a few blogs! lol!♥  Anyway, it's the first day of summer, and, we're all feeling it, aren't we?  Please have a wonderful and safe weekend. 

Hugs to you all!
(you too, Cindy and Paulette!)

*** dusk gives in to darkness, they know they must allow the sleepy town to roll up its sidewalks one more time.  Once again, they make their way back into reality, channeling all memories into the archives of their minds, knowing they will re-surface again at a later date...
...And, the old drive-in stands by proudly in its bedraggled state, still reminiscing in its own right-because,  a monumental comeback is inevitable!!!
~photo by Suzanne * June 13, 2013 * Jacksboro, TX

Till we meet again, mes amis!
Bon soir!