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Katherine Hepburn -- Can someone please explain her reputation?

Was watching Stage Door this weekend -- great movie, mostly because of Gail Patrick. But what I don't get is why the Hepburn adulation. She's the same person in every movie she made; the same voice, the same facial expressions, the same body language. Seeing her in Stage Door and seeing her in Guess Who's Coming to DInner makes you just think that it's the same character, a few decades older.

Just don't get it.

by Anonymousreply 22406/12/2015

Oh go away.

by Anonymousreply 108/08/2011

Thank you OP for that appreciation of Gail Patrick. I have always loved her.

by Anonymousreply 208/08/2011

It's a lesbian thing.

by Anonymousreply 308/08/2011

I never got it either.

by Anonymousreply 408/08/2011

I assume you have seen Philadelphia Story, The African Queen, Pat and Mike, Long Day's Journey Into Night, Lion in Winter to name a few. %0D %0D If you don't get it, well then your loss. Some people are clueless- cannot be helped.

by Anonymousreply 508/08/2011

She makes people feel safe - just like Meryl Streep. This is why they are called 'great actors', because they make you think that the Great Lie is actually your truth.

by Anonymousreply 708/08/2011

R7, what is the 'great lie' you are speaking of? I bet Streep would love to know- you know, to help with her technique.

by Anonymousreply 808/08/2011

R6 nailed it.

by Anonymousreply 908/08/2011

I dont get her as well. In every film I have seen her in I was never able to forget I was watching Kathrine Hepburn and not the character she was allegedly playing. Bette Davis on the other hand did a much better job at becoming the character to the point I forget who I am watching. But then again, Davis had no problem taking on risky, unsympathetic roles. Hepburn always played it safe. Plus she went to her grave insisting George Cukor was not gay. Who does she think she was fooling?

by Anonymousreply 1008/08/2011

And P.S. to the OP: It's Katharine Hepburn, not "Katherine."

by Anonymousreply 1108/08/2011

Katherine Hepburn was the triumph of presence and star power over talent and versatility. Of course she was the same from role to role--her career was built on it. Think of how much those characters in the movies at R5 have in common. %0D %0D She couldn't be more like UNLIKE Meryl Streep (who she actively disliked, BTW), who changes shape, voice, and personna from role to role. %0D %0D I'm not dismissing star power (there's not a lot of it these days) or the length of KH's career, which was pretty incredible.

by Anonymousreply 1208/08/2011

If you think her performances in Bringing Up Baby, Woman of the Year and Long Day's Journey Into Night are exactly the same, OP, then you really need help.

by Anonymousreply 1308/08/2011

I generally am not a fan of her work. Her affected accent, her demeanor. But even I have to admit it worked like a charm in Stage Door.

by Anonymousreply 1408/08/2011

In a way I agree with you OP but I love her all the same especially compared to the shit actors now. At least she seems like she had some formal training and an education unlike most of Hollywood now and I love how so many of the old movie stars had distinctive voices.

by Anonymousreply 1508/08/2011

Oh, yes, no versatility. So mannered, so constantly the same, such a triumph of personality and star power. "Stage Door," "Bringing Up Baby," Lion in Winter," "Long Day's Journey into Night," "Trojan Women," "Summertime," "Alice Adams," "Desk Set," "Philadelphia Story," "Rainmaker" Idiots.

by Anonymousreply 1608/08/2011

R10 and their ilk are so grossly misinformed about what acting is. You don't know what you're talking about. It is physically/scientifically IMPOSSIBLE for one person to become another. Great acting isn't about to what length a person can go to make you forget who they are and become someone else, great acting, even good acting, is about a person's willingness to reveal themselves and therefore something about the human condition. All the other stuff is just surface and, apparently, impressive to idiots.

by Anonymousreply 1708/08/2011

She had no craft, R16. She was the same person whether in Long Day's Journey into Night or in Bringing Up Baby. Just laughed more in one than the other. She didn't even try to vary her facial expressions. Always the same person.

That said, I like her a lot and some of her movies are classics. But I think R6 explained it well. No one wanted to see her with a different accent, or overweight, or all hunchbacked and lame. Audiences wanted to look at the screen and say, "There's Katharine Hepburn!"

by Anonymousreply 1808/08/2011

Just can't help doing this but R17, you really need to learn English before you post. R10 is singular... so not "their ilk." And then you switch to the second person after starting your attack in the third person. Poor. Again, in the second sentence in the second paragraph, "a person" is singular, not plural, so "they" is wrong. You do that again in the next clause. And so on...

Worse, your argument makes no sense. We all know it is impossible for one person to become another. We are talking about acting, not Freaky Friday.

by Anonymousreply 1908/08/2011

[quote]She makes people feel safe - just like Meryl Streep. This is why they are called 'great actors', because they make you think that the Great Lie is actually your truth.

"Safe?" Is that what they're calling it these days?

by Anonymousreply 2008/08/2011

Count me as another who never cared for her acting -- an interesting person, maybe, but uninteresting to watch as an actress.

Of course her performances are different, but what's the same about them is the lack of subtlety, of nuance, of emotional depth, of portraying an individual; instead we get a the same series of nervous ticks, brittle archness, the jackal laugh, and a thin, always opaque veneer -- an actress playing the part of an actress playing a part.

by Anonymousreply 2108/08/2011

SLUT!

by Anonymousreply 2208/08/2011

Impressive versatility - used here in the sense of marked character differentiation - and great acting are not synonymous.%0D %0D Many great actors are not particularly versatile.%0D %0D Commendably versatile actors are not necessarily possessed of the inventiveness, passion, irony, humor, verisimilitude, expressiveness and utilization of the self, blending of mystery and clarity, psychological and or dramaturgical truth, and or sheer craft to place them among the greatest actors.%0D %0D Versatility is a fine quality in acting but it is neither a necessary nor a sufficient one for greatness.%0D %0D Hepburn, a unique and, for a great many people much loved screen personality, has recognizable signature qualities easily identified in a great many - but IMHO by no means all - of her performances. %0D %0D However, that does not make these "Hepburny" characters identical in spirit, thought, physicality, history, objective, obstacle, tonality or values. %0D %0D It may also be noted that Hepburn was highly adept at physical comedy (Bringing Up Baby), sophisticated comedy (Philadelphia Story, Lion in Winter), wistful romance (Summertime, one of her greatest achievements), light domestic socially inflected comedy (Guess Whose Coming to Dinner), and poetic drama (Long Days Journey), which speaks well, in quite another sense, of her versatility.%0D %0D Additionally, it is simply not the case that others who, perhaps even more than Ms. Hepburn, were renowned for their unique, and in some cases minimally varying, screen personalities - Mae West, W.C. Fields, Marlene Dietrich, Charles Laughton, Goldie Hawn, Charles Chaplin, Anna Magnani, Jack Lemmon, Rosalind Russell, Cary Grant, Claude Raines, Agnes Moorehead, Greta Garbo, Dustin Hoffman - were not superb actors. %0D %0D This constant cry on DL judging great acting merely on some limited definition of "versatility" is cliche, shortsighted, boring and ignorant.

by Anonymousreply 2308/08/2011

To me, the best performances are often those that are properly cast. The Philadelphia Story was written for KH, for example. The characters in many of her films called for someone like her in the role. Think African Queen and many of her films with Spencer Tracy. I'm no expert on her, but I suspect her dislike of Meryl Streep's performances (and maybe the actress herself) was that Meryl becomes completely different in each role. That is her intention and it is what she does. I think that KH may have believed that a role called for her to be a version of herself. She may have thought that all Meryl's transformations to play her roles were getting in the way of this essential person showing through. I think it is just 2 different interpretations of acting, 2 generations apart. Cary Grant was a lot like KH in that he typically played a version of himself. That is what audiences wanted to see. And they were contemporaries.

by Anonymousreply 2408/08/2011

Well, she sure was different in "On Golden Pond."

Just sayin'.

by Anonymousreply 2508/08/2011

Thank the baby jesus and all of his apostles for the honesty of the OP. I have never gotten the hype regarding THIS particular Hepburn. Kay was sooo wooden, mannered and downright smug in every part that she made Audrey look like her generation's Meryl.

by Anonymousreply 2608/08/2011

"she went to her grave insisting George Cukor was not gay."%0D %0D And that she was straight

by Anonymousreply 2708/08/2011

Reading one of the bios on her and it seems like she was a royal cunt to everyone during the run of COCO.

by Anonymousreply 2808/08/2011

And here we simply digress into the campy camps of the "Kate Haters" and "Kate Lovers," the latter at least being capable of having a laugh over some of the travesties.

R18's pronouncements on "craft" and inability to discern a difference between the performances she notes land her butt in the former camp, and it's simply silly. Yeah, Gladys, sure, you're right because you say so and you have seen ever so many movies in your life. Your quote of R6 doesn't explain a lack of taste or discernment on your part, but you will see what you expect to see, so go ahead.

Again, idiots.

by Anonymousreply 2908/08/2011

I also think African Queen is a bit of a tour de force for both Hepburn and Bogart.%0D %0D There are a few great actresses today that could pull that one off, like Streep, Blanchet-but Hepburn was sublime, as she was in Lion in Winter. She used part of her personality and character and mannerisms to create great and believable characters. She was not a chameleon, nor were most actresses of her day particularly screen actresses. But she was great nevertheless. %0D %0D More than one way to get to great acting you know. Her accent, such as it was, was real. Not taught, not a learned affect.

by Anonymousreply 3008/08/2011

While we're on the subject, here are a few you could be focusing on instead:

Humphrey Bogart

Gary Cooper

Ann Sothern

Rita Hayworth

Joan Bennett

Myrna Loy

Clark Gable

Bette Fucking Davis

and how about

Julia Roberts

Tom Cruise

and

George Clooney

by Anonymousreply 3108/08/2011

[italic] The Calla Lillies ahr in blum to-day. [/italic]

by Anonymousreply 3208/08/2011

The only movies I really like her in are Summertime, The African Queen and Adam's Rib.

by Anonymousreply 3308/08/2011

someday op, [r26] and [r31] when you are all grown up, you will realize that what you think doesn't amount to a hill of beans. I could write you list that would go on for days about what I don't get about what is so popular.

by Anonymousreply 3408/08/2011

She was a great star no question about it. A decent comebienne in the right role. With the African Queen she morphed into her "spinster" persona where she remained for the next 30+ years. Arguably great in LDJIN.

by Anonymousreply 3508/08/2011

Not a fan of Kate, and from what I've read she was not a person to like, but I appreciate her star presence, and within her limited range, she was quite a good actress. Now, the hamfisted overactor that Meryl Streep has become ... that's another story.

by Anonymousreply 3608/08/2011

Never much of a fan of hers but I think stardom is interesting to analyze -- why this one becomes a star but that one doesn't---and never more so than with Hepburn.

Imo, she rose to stardom in the Great Depression because for some strange reason the poor and struggling masses wanted to 'escape' by watching films featuring women with class, wealth (the roles Hepburn and Colbert played) or films with exotic foreign women (Garbo and Dietrich). Otherwise, I think Hepburn would never have succeeded in films with that brittle Eastern seaboard voice and manne.

By the 1940s, the public was sick of her and she was box office poison until Tracy came along and the public liked her films with him because he was rough Irish-American who ultimately put her in her place in all those films together.

The 50s -- the spinster era and she was revered by this point. Her two best films of her career are, just in my opinion, the 50s "Summertime" (directed by David Lean who knew how to control actors and get good performances) and "Long Day's Journey---" (directed by Sidney Lumet who also knew how to handle actors).

by Anonymousreply 3708/08/2011

[quote]By the 1940s, the public was sick of her and she was box office poison until Tracy came along

She was "box office poison" in the late 30s. She broke that with "The Philadelphia Story" - before Tracy.

by Anonymousreply 3808/08/2011

Whether she is a great actress or not, I find that I can't take my eyes off her when she's on the screen.

by Anonymousreply 3908/08/2011

Yes, "Philadelphia Story" was a sudden hit --and I say Grant and Stewart were reliable stars who deserve as much credit for it being a hit --but you look at her resume and see some of those awful films she continued to do in the 40s before the winning combo of Tracy and Hepburn. He really rescued her in that particular decade.

by Anonymousreply 4008/08/2011

Hepburn is the Best Actress in history - 4 Oscars. Don't think anyone will ever beat that, and that includes Streep.

Her Oscar-winning performance in "The Lion in Winter" as Eleanor of Aquitaine opposite Peter O'Toole is amazing.

by Anonymousreply 4108/08/2011

I will take Kath[bold]a[/bold]rine Hepburn over Meryl Streep any day.

by Anonymousreply 4208/08/2011

I agree, R39. When she's on, I don't analyze, I just love watching her, whatever she's doing -- she's always fun to watch, period.

by Anonymousreply 4308/08/2011

Streep has plunged headfirst into her own hype, which I never thought would happen. I guess now that the kids are all grown, she's free to have fun. But there are times where she's getting too close to late period Bette Davis territory. %0D %0D Hepburn bought into her own hype to some degree, but she never allowed it to comnpletely consume her. There was always that constant quality to her work.

by Anonymousreply 4408/08/2011

Thank you OP, never got it myself. Her whole career was like an ode to the stiff upper lip. Sure she acted like an emotionally repressed wasp well, but it's like the emperor's new clothes of acting. Nothing there.

by Anonymousreply 4508/08/2011

The quote from an interview she did with Barbara Walters when she was cohosting the news with Harry Reasoner was something like, 'You can see when that Meryl person is acting and I don't appreciate it. You can see her eyes firing like pistons in an engine and it's clear that she's thinking and plotting her next steps. She'll be yesterday's news by tomorrow."

by Anonymousreply 4608/08/2011

I remember a great interview with George Cukor in which he talked about Hepburn's screen test for her first film A Bill of Divorcement and how she astounded everyone becuase they'd never seen anything like her anywhere. He said that now we are all used to the concept of Katharine Hepburn but can you imagine what it was like seeing her for the very first time? She is and was truly unique.

by Anonymousreply 4708/08/2011

Indeed, R47. I'm watching "Suddenly, Last Summer." She's very odd, although completely wonderful and beautiful and charming. %0D %0D It's impossible to imagine someone as far from the all-American type as the young Hepburn was becoming a star today.

by Anonymousreply 4808/09/2011

Love her, though I can understand why some don't like here.

She was a true style icon. I always liked that most people only had good things to say about her. Except the old queen cunt Beaton.

by Anonymousreply 4908/09/2011

[quote]The Calla Lillies ahr in blum to-day.

It's "The calla lilies are in bloom again."

Say what you will about her, Hepburn at least had a decent sense of humor about herself at that time--at her insistance the "calla lilies" line was imported straight from one of her "Miss Hepburn ran the gamut of emotions from A to B" (thank you, Dorothy Parker) Broadway bombs.

I used to be a huge fan, but I find Bette Davis far more interesting as an actress. Davis went for broke in what and how she played--as skilled as Hepburn could be, she never gave you that impression. That being said, she was wonderful at comedy--if she never made another film after "Bringing Up Baby" she'd still be remembered.

by Anonymousreply 5008/09/2011

R41, you imbecile, number of awards has nothing to do with quality of work. %0D %0D Are you one of those jerks who also thinks more ticket sales means better movies, theater and music?

by Anonymousreply 5108/10/2011

R51 = Meryl Streep

by Anonymousreply 5208/10/2011

R52 LOL

by Anonymousreply 5308/10/2011

I used to think that Katharine Hepburn's remark about Streep being mechanical was both churlish and wrong. Then, I saw "The Hours." I wanted to scream at the screen: "Stop reacting! Just sit still and let the other person get a syllable out without twitching or changing emotional gears." I think Streep can be amazing -- a much better actress than Hepburn -- but she can also be annoying and very self-conscious.

by Anonymousreply 5408/10/2011

"It's impossible to imagine someone as far from the all-American type as the young Hepburn was becoming a star today."%0D %0D huh?%0D %0D Hepburn was a rich white girl with killer cheekbones from Connecticut who went to Bryn Mawr. She was a great athlete. And she was gorgeous. %0D %0D She was certainly more "all-American" than Hilary Swank, Renee Zellweger, Sarah Jessica Parker, Ellen Page, Jennifer Hudson, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Christina Ricci, etc., etc., etc. %0D %0D

by Anonymousreply 5508/10/2011

R54, of course Hepburn was right. You can always see the wheels turning when you watch Streep.

by Anonymousreply 5608/11/2011

Eh. She was no great shakes. Until later.

by Anonymousreply 5708/11/2011

OP%0D %0D %0D Watch the video I am linking to. Then please re read everything here and just go to her IMBD listing and have a nice time of things. %0D %0D

by Anonymousreply 5808/11/2011

She used to answer her phone by saying: What? How can you not like someone like that?

by Anonymousreply 5908/11/2011

LOVING all the other posters who do not bow to the altar of the Streep.... I thought I was the only one, and I'm an actor in NY, which seems to be sacred territory, Meryl-wise... Am I wrong, or has she only been truly unselfconsciously funny in one movie... "Postcards"? In every other "comic" performance, I think, she steps outside the situation and turns into a PTA mom winking at her kids... (well, not that bad, but not a PATCH on someone like Diane Keaton, Catherine O'Hara or Dianne Wiest?). And now, back to our regularly scheduled Hepburn.

by Anonymousreply 6008/11/2011

I like Meryl's performance in "Death Becomes Her", but in most roles you can see her working.

by Anonymousreply 6108/11/2011

r60, I think Streep would be the first to concede that she is not in O'Hara's, Wiest's or Keaton's league as a comedic actress.%0D %0D So fucking what?

by Anonymousreply 6208/11/2011

Hepburn has a magnetism Streep can only dream of.

by Anonymousreply 6308/11/2011

Hepburn was also a cultural icon of the time in a way in which Streep isn't. Hepburn was a trailblazer for women's rights, new attitudes on clothing etc.

by Anonymousreply 6408/11/2011

Yeah, right. Closeted lesbian posing as adultress.

by Anonymousreply 6508/11/2011

Was Hepburn also a big fan of Barbra Streisand? I know that Bette Davis and Greta Garbo adored Barbra.

by Anonymousreply 6608/11/2011

I don't know, R66, but Hepburn should not have had to share her Oscar for "The Lion in Winter" with Barbra.

by Anonymousreply 6708/11/2011

I loved her in "The Lion in Winter" where she played the queen of 12th century Connecticut.

by Anonymousreply 6808/11/2011

I wholeheartedly agree with you, OP.

by Anonymousreply 6908/11/2011

Hepburn had wonderful chemistry with Spencer Tracy in everything I've seen with them. i love them in Adam's Rib, just magical. they may well have been both queer in real life but onscreen they're a perfect match. %0D %0D As others have noted, Hepburn was not a chameleon, but you don't have to be to be a great actor. Especially with comedians - from Chaplin to W.C. Fields to Woody Allen - you don't see any variation at all, they create a particular personality and then repeat it again and again in all their movies. But it doesn't follow that Chaplin couldn't act just because he always played the Little Tramp. you can be "limited" yet still "great."%0D %0D I think i prefer Hepburn to Streep. you never forget you're watching a performance with Streep, you can't get lost in the character's situation: she's easy to admire for her craft, but her technique always shows.%0D %0D i loathe Pauline Kael and disagree with practically all her opinions, but she wasn't wrong about Streep's visible technique. i admire her versatility - and her longevity - but she'll never be my favorite actress. i personally think Hepburn and Bette Davis were both greater actresses than Streep.

by Anonymousreply 7008/11/2011

Peter O'Toole said in an interview on Charlie Rose a few years ago that Katherine Hepburn was his favorite co-star.

by Anonymousreply 7108/11/2011

"Peter O'Toole said in an interview on Charlie Rose a few years ago that Katherine Hepburn was his favorite co-star."

By all accounts, Hepburn was a lotta fun and very down to earth. Her domestic staff was with her for DECADES. She was also a generous woman and very loyal to her friends.

by Anonymousreply 7208/11/2011

Madeline Kahn was a brilliant comedic actress who managed to be quite different from role to role and she did it effortlessly, not allowing much technique to show.

by Anonymousreply 7308/12/2011

I couldn't stand Kathy Hepburn. She really needed to get over her own importance and stop being jealous of the REAL actors.

by Anonymousreply 7408/12/2011

Hepburn is always interesting on screen--but not as an actress. Her attempts at any emotional depth...well her superficiality gets in the way. She has a great surface, but that is all it is. Surface.

As someone said, you are always aware you are watching a performance by Katherine Hepburn. Even Ginger Rogers acts rings around her in Stage Door.

by Anonymousreply 7508/12/2011

Joan Rivers said she was a mean old dyke who gave her the creeps! But she said Katharine was sunshine and rainbows by comparison!

by Anonymousreply 7608/12/2011

R76, what the fuck are you trying to say?

by Anonymousreply 7708/12/2011

R75 = Meryl

by Anonymousreply 7808/12/2011

I have never ever understood the appeal of Hepurn either. She was mannish and mannered and if you think you can see Meryl Streep "acting", Hepburn leaves a fucking road map with every role.

by Anonymousreply 7908/12/2011

...

by Anonymousreply 8008/12/2011

Could Streep have played Eleanor of Aquitaine as well as Hepburn?

Probably not.

by Anonymousreply 8108/12/2011

Can Meryl Streep do this?

by Anonymousreply 8208/13/2011

Hepburn could do drama and comedy, no small feat. Yes, she had a certain range within those categories, but within her range she was fantastic. Watch her in The Lion in Winter, and then the horror show of Glenn Close trying to play the same part and you'll understand how good she was. In On Golden Pond she acts two-time Oscar winner Jane Fonda off the screen.

by Anonymousreply 8308/13/2011

In Lion in Winter she's basically Tracy the sophisticated urban girl in a wimple pretending she's at a medieval fair. Kathy H can't pull off drama. Her only good roles were in vehicles like Bringing Up Baby etc where she talks fast and mugs for the camera--which is all she knew how to do.

She was a great personality. A great role model. A great face. But she couldn't act to save her life.

by Anonymousreply 8408/13/2011

R84 = Mamie posting from her mom's computer.

by Anonymousreply 8508/13/2011

Can Meryl Streep do THIS?

by Anonymousreply 8608/13/2011

Hepburn and Davis were great romantic heroines. That's why people still watch their big hits 60 or 70-odd years after the fact. %0D %0D Which of Streep's movies will people still watch in 2070? Heartburn?

by Anonymousreply 8708/13/2011

Hepburn not only excelled at comedy and drama but also perfectly carried off period as well as contemporary characters. Hell, she even excllled at actions pics (The African Queen) and westerns (Rooster Cogburn).%0D %0D Who else has all those genres successfully on their resumes? Certainly not Streep or even Davis.

by Anonymousreply 8808/13/2011

Everyone forgets that she really did look good back before she got 'the shakes'. Hepburn was the most beautiful 'heroine' with gumption. Stanwyck and Russell may have been stronger and funnier but they weren't as beautiful as Hepburn. So you get someone who looks as good as a coquettish but can stand up against any leading man. Pure magic when done well. Oh and her chemistry with Cary Grant surpasses her so-called chemistry with Tracy....anyone ever see Holiday?

by Anonymousreply 8908/13/2011

She was a knockout.

by Anonymousreply 9008/14/2011

I always consider Hepburn as a true American original. She really was unique.

by Anonymousreply 9108/14/2011

Hepburn was a personality who was an actress. As with all the greats from Hollywood's golden age, the actor, no matter what the role, brought something of him or herself to the part. It wasn't ABOUT being a "chameleon" back then and "losing oneself in a role." People wanted to see Barbra Stanwyck or Clark Gable or Roz Russell up there on the screen, first and foremost. The few actors, like Olivier, who professed to "lose themselves in a role" still really didn't. Whether it was Rebecca or The Entertainer, people knew they were watching Olivier. Same with Kate. That patrician, haughty, overly enunciated New Englander was front and center in every role. And she is/was someone's cup of tea or not. She lost her box office appeal in the late 30's, only to regain it with The Philadelphia Story. Hepburn was a genius at picking her own material from that point going forward. Once she became an independent, she knew what was right for her. At Metro, L.B. Mayer respected her in a way that he simply did not respect his other stable of actresses. I think he was probably a bit intimidated by her, actually. He was an uneducated European Jew and she was a Bryn Mawr American blueblood who represented everything he wanted to be.

Kate Hepburn was fearless in her acting, whether "limited" or not. She was strident, idiosyncratic and mannered. But, boy, she was all those things in spades. That was REALLY HER you saw up there in close up. No "click, click, click." And, again, you either "get" her or you don't. You either love her or you don't. But it's not hard to explain her. SHE would have been the first to say that about herself. She hated artifice, even in the face of pretense.

by Anonymousreply 9208/14/2011

Well, when Peter O'Toole, who indeed admired Hepburn (he even names one of his daughters after her), was named as the recipient of an honorary Oscar, he specifically asked for Streep to be the one to present him with his award, which she did (it was the only time she was part of the show other than show up as a nominee). So I guess it's not a given one must choose between them the way too many one track minds over here feel obliged to do.

by Anonymousreply 9308/14/2011

I can't really get into Meryl Streep. Her accent-ry turns me off and she has no charisma. I really wouldn't call her America's greatest actress. Hepburn's criticism was right.

by Anonymousreply 9408/14/2011

That was really well written and on point, R92. Thanks.

by Anonymousreply 9508/14/2011

I tend to think of Davis as being a far more fearless actress. Dangerous, Beyond the Forest, Little Foxes, Baby Jane - she wasn't afraid to play the monster or the bad girl.

by Anonymousreply 9608/14/2011

This is the MGM's 25th Anniversary luncheon, 10 minutes worth. Watch for Hep:

by Anonymousreply 9708/14/2011

"Katharine Hepburn delivered a striking performance that ran the gamut of emotions, from A to B."

- Dorothy Parker

by Anonymousreply 9808/14/2011

Great clip r97. I love how George Murphy the MC says "Hi Luvee!" to Angela Lansbury.

by Anonymousreply 9908/14/2011

She was a lesbian? Wasn't she?

by Anonymousreply 10008/14/2011

For R98:

[italic]The most famous remark was said by Dorothy Parker ' She runs the garmut from A to B'.

The same Dorothy Parker who, said to Garson Kanin after he had asked her %E2%80%93 why Katharine Hepburn was a favorite of hers. 'I thought you didn't like her.' 'Me?' said Dorothy Parker. 'I don't think there's a finer actress anywhere.' But what about 'all the way from A to B?' Garson Kanin asked Dorothy Parker. 'Or didn%E2%80%99t you say it? Or do you think she improved?' Dorothy Parker sighed, 'Oh, I said it all right. You know how it is. A joke.' 'When people expect you to say things and you say things. Isn't it the way it is.'] Source: Garson Kanin - An Intimate Memoir - 1971[/italic]

by Anonymousreply 10108/14/2011

Loved it when Hepburn referred to Parker's crack in her Dick Cavett interview. "The gumuttttttttt from Ayyyy to Beeeee" all in her metallic diction.

by Anonymousreply 10208/14/2011

Did Kate and Bette Davis know one another at all? I can't recall ever seeing a photo of the two of them together.

by Anonymousreply 10308/14/2011

I don't think Davis and Hepburn ever interacted. They were in different circles, Davis was completely enmeshed at Warners and Hepburn freelanced. Davis always spoke of Hepburn with respect bordering on reverence. I don't think that Hepburn ever spoke of Davis at all. Hepburn was a blue blood Yankee and Davis came from Lowell (where The Fighter took place) and was raised by her mother.-%0D %0D Hepburn's performance record was more consistent (if a bit overrated) whereas Davis body of work is erratic. Still the performances that Davis gave at Warner's between 1938-1945 are the finest put forward by an American actress. The performaces that Davis gave in "The Letter" "Jezebel" "Now Voyager" "The Old Maid" and "The Little Foxes" Hepburn could never dream of giving.

by Anonymousreply 10408/14/2011

I love Hepburn, but I've always preferred Davis. I think Davis was the more versatile actress, and just such a unique (some would say borderline crazy) personality. %0D %0D I can't imagine Katharine Hepburn playing Margot Channing and being half as great as Bette Davis was.

by Anonymousreply 10508/14/2011

Hepburn's version of the "bad girl" were seen in Bringing Up Baby and The Philadelphia Story. She knew as well as anyone that she could never be believable as lower class or even working class bad. %0D %0D And her "good girl" working class portrayals...Summertime, The Rainmaker, The Desk Set and The African Queen were all well-mannered and luminous.%0D %0D Yes, it's true. She never played a guttersnipe.

by Anonymousreply 10608/14/2011

"I can't imagine Katharine Hepburn playing Margot Channing and being half as great as Bette Davis was."

You may be right on that one.

I don't think Bette Davis would have been as good as Kate in "The Lion in Winter".

by Anonymousreply 10708/14/2011

I could easily see Bette opposite Spencer Tracy in all of those 40s/50s films but could never imagine her opposite Cary Grant in the earlier films.

by Anonymousreply 10808/14/2011

Bette Davis revelled in playing low-class guttersnipes and excelled at them. On the other hand, she could also play upper-class characters just as well. Hepburn could only do upper-class.

by Anonymousreply 10908/14/2011

She was named number ONE female screen legend of the 20th Century by American Film Institute.%0D A few of the resons are given on the attached link.%0D %0D Who are YOU, OP?

by Anonymousreply 11008/14/2011

Oh my God, the incredibly intelligent R110 has managed to figure out that I, the OP, am not as great as Ms. Hepburn.

Such perspicacity deserves some kind of reward. What a mind!!!

by Anonymousreply 11108/14/2011

I think the point R110 was making is that she ranks at the top - hardly the B-list actress you portrayed her to be, OP.

by Anonymousreply 11208/14/2011

I think it's safe to say, OP, that you never looked as good as this:

by Anonymousreply 11308/14/2011

It's called the power of personality, though she was a damn fine actress as well.

by Anonymousreply 11408/14/2011

I read a biography about her once (2 decades ago?) and all I remember from it is: 1) her brother hung himself in the attic of the family home; and 2) she sweated constantly. %0D %0D I'm wondering now if all the sweating indicates she had an anxiety disorder.

by Anonymousreply 11508/14/2011

I remember Bette Davis saying that she and Hepburn don't know each other. She also said that she wrote Hepburn a letter after that "awful" Garson Kanin book came out and never received a response.

by Anonymousreply 11608/14/2011

I think Hepburn didn't like to associate with someone as deranged as Bette Davis. I read about Davis that people would be worried when going on that she'd be causing on of her scenes. Hepburn was very local to her old friends from back East and didn't mingle as much with the Hollywood crowd.

by Anonymousreply 11708/14/2011

Now that I think of it, I don't believe Katharine Hepburn was friends with any other actresses, either of her generation or younger with the possible exception of Jane Fonda. Marlene Dietrich was the same way. They were friends with plenty of male stars, but not females.

by Anonymousreply 11808/14/2011

Make of Hepburn what you will but to suggest that she was a genius when picking her films after "Philadelphia Story" resuscitated her career is ridiculous. "Dragon Seed". Sea of Grass", that awful Clara Schuman performance in some film called "Without Love", there were a couple of others --- all done after "Philadelphia Story" and all quite bad!

As for "African Queen", I never bought that some woman that neurotic and that prim would ever have managed to survive in Africa for a day much less years. I thought it was a misguided performance, for all her talk about Eleanor Roosevelt was an inspiration. (Bogey was damn good though.)

by Anonymousreply 11908/14/2011

Kate received an Oscar nomination for The African Queen and would have won had Vivien Leigh not been nominated that year for A Streetcar Named Desire.

by Anonymousreply 12008/14/2011

Bette Davis was not deranged. Away from the cameras, she was actually down to earth. Unlike most hollywood types, she did her own cooking and cleaning around the house. There was no entourage following her around. She came and left the studio every day by herself. Her craziness has been inflated due to that book her lunatic daughter wrote about her. %0D %0D I would say Davis was more down to earth than Hepburn. Kate had her own bizzare behaviors, between the not eating out at restaurants to the Garbo-esque reclusiveness. Davis worked and promoted, she knew the routine.

by Anonymousreply 12108/14/2011

[quote] Loved it when Hepburn referred to Parker's crack in her Dick Cavett interview. "The gumuttttttttt from Ayyyy to Beeeee" all in her metallic diction.

She (mis)pronounced it "guh-MUTT" with the accent on the second syllable. I thought it was funny that she mispronounced it; she always seemed so sure of herself and convinced that she was right about everything.

by Anonymousreply 12208/14/2011

R121, Bette Davis was one of the most vicious actresses in history.

She was nice away from the cameras? That's not what her own daughter said.

by Anonymousreply 12308/14/2011

Hepburn didn't eat at restaurants? I didn't know that - what was her reason?%0D %0D Bette Davis was quite an eccentric woman and she had a drinking problem for her entire adult life, and there are also numerous stories about her being obnoxious at parties when she was half in the bag, especially in her later years. Overall though, she wasn't a total nutcase and if you caught her in the right mood she could be very pleasant and funny.%0D %0D Years ago, there was a thread here on DL and somebody who was acquainted with Davis in the 1970/1980s posted a few stories and they were hilarious.

by Anonymousreply 12408/14/2011

Didn't Bette Davis act verbally abusive to Helen Hayes once?

by Anonymousreply 12508/14/2011

Davis's "own daughter" inherited her grandmother's (Bette's mother Ruthie's) religious mania, as well as possibly more severe mental illness.

by Anonymousreply 12608/14/2011

You mean THIS daughter? If she hated Bette so much, why did she have Bette support her and her family for so many years?%0D %0D Bette's son and Gary Merrill both said the book was bullshit. %0D %0D %0D %0D %0D

by Anonymousreply 12708/14/2011

I think Helen Hayes helped Bette Davis get a part in her later years when she was no longer at her peak, and yet Davis was nasty to her. I think Hayes said she was shocked at how horrible she was.

by Anonymousreply 12808/14/2011

Well r119, that's precisely the fun of The African Queen and her character! And she recognized it. Do you really think it would have been a better film and characterization if Kate played her as a well-prepared Girl Scout?

by Anonymousreply 12908/14/2011

W/R/T Bette Davis: Yeah she was a unique chick with a thing or two but her daughter wrote a book chock full of fibbing about her. See, her daughter thought Bette Davis was soon to pass on because of a stroke she had. So, her daughter went to town on the book and figured her own mother would be dead before it came out. %0D %0D But, Bette Davis was made of wrought iron old school Yankee steel and did not die. She even wrote a book called "This 'N That" and told her own daughter off in the final chapter of the book.%0D %0D %0D %0D

by Anonymousreply 13008/14/2011

Hepburn was a loyal and caring friend to Judy Garland.

by Anonymousreply 13108/15/2011

Well, I mean....who wasn't verbally abusive to Helen Hayes?

by Anonymousreply 13208/15/2011

IIRC Esther Williams devotes a whole chapter of her bio Million Dollar Mermaid to the drunkeness of Bette Davis. And another one to the drunkeness of Joan Crawford. And then, most famously, another one to Jeff Chandler's polka dot dress afinities.

by Anonymousreply 13308/15/2011

I really think Bette's ten-year marriage to that drunken whack job Gary Merrill is what finally sent her over the edge. He really psychologically tortured her to the point where she was just "off" for the rest of her life.

by Anonymousreply 13408/15/2011

Look, ALL of them were alcoholics, all of them.%0D %0D "She was nice away from the cameras? That's not what her own daughter said"%0D %0D Like my own father. He was a a doll at the office and with other people, just a shit around the house with his family. And an alcoholic.

by Anonymousreply 13508/15/2011

Bette Davis was a lot more emotionally unstable than Katharine Hepburn ever could be.

by Anonymousreply 13608/16/2011

Gore Vidal does a fabulous impression of Katharine Hepburn complaining about playing the matriarch in Suddenly Last Summer, which he wrote. %E2%80%9CI hate this script,%E2%80%9D he recalls Hepburn saying . %E2%80%9CI%E2%80%99m far too healthy a person to know people like this.%E2%80%9D Vidal snorts. %E2%80%9CShe had Parkinson%E2%80%99s. She shook like a leper in the wind.%E2%80%9D

by Anonymousreply 13708/16/2011

I thought she was just some scary old lady, but when I finally watched her movies from the 30s I could see the appeal - she was MODERN before her time.

by Anonymousreply 13808/16/2011

I enjoyed reading the passages about Kate in Arthur Laurents' memoirs, especially the part about how Laurents confronted her after Garson Kanin quoted her as stating that there was no such thing as male homosexuality.

by Anonymousreply 13908/16/2011

"Hepburn was a loyal and caring friend to Judy Garland"%0D %0D LOL. That's because she was hoping to make her. Even in her obese state.

by Anonymousreply 14008/16/2011

Katharine Hepburn teaches you how to audition. It's very informative.

by Anonymousreply 14108/16/2011

"LOL. That's because she was hoping to make her. Even in her obese state."

Hepburn was more into the flat-chested, slender athletic types.

by Anonymousreply 14208/16/2011

Love this quote from Vidal:

Vidal now believes, as he did originally, Clinton would be the better president. %E2%80%9CHillary knows more about the world and what to do with the generals. History has proven when the girls get involved, they%E2%80%99re good at it. Elizabeth I knew Raleigh would be a good man to give a ship to.%E2%80%9D

by Anonymousreply 14308/16/2011

A Delicate Balance is one of her films that doesn't get mentioned much. She was fierce, wistful and at times very funny perfectly delivering Edward Albee's wry dialogue. 15 years older then Paul Scofield they were believable as husband and wife. 23 years older then Kate Reid they were believable as sisters. Promoting this movie led to the celebrated Dick Cavett interview.

There was her speech to her husband about how during sex after the death of their son he would "pull out and spill yourself on my belly. Don't leave me like this..."

She played Shakespeare and Shaw on stage. Though she couldn't sing she made COCO and event. An elderly deceased friend once told me, "She was all wrong for it but she worked her ass off and was great!"

Yes, she played up The Yankee Grand Dame shtick as she got older but there are enough movies where she really was superb to warrant legendary reputation.

by Anonymousreply 14408/16/2011

She had gumption!

by Anonymousreply 14508/16/2011

She was just so beautiful at her peak.

by Anonymousreply 14608/30/2011

I'm bumping this thread to say, Hepburn was one of the worst actors in cinema history.

by Anonymousreply 14704/26/2013

A pretty good book on the subject Gods Like Us points out that our need for stars has changed. It used to be about seeing a movie to see Kate, not about seeing a movie that Kate acted in. The author sort of credits Brando with starting that change.

by Anonymousreply 14804/26/2013

She's not whorish and coarse enough for DL.

by Anonymousreply 14904/26/2013

Hepburn's "style" influenced women over DECADES.

by Anonymousreply 15004/26/2013

[quote]A pretty good book on the subject Gods Like Us points out that our need for stars has changed. It used to be about seeing a movie to see Kate, not about seeing a movie that Kate acted in. The author sort of credits Brando with starting that change.

True. Hepburn was more a personality, (like Marlene Dietrich, Mae West, Tallulah Bankhead) than she was an actress.

[quote]Hepburn's "style" influenced women over DECADES.

Her [italic]acting[/italic] style?

by Anonymousreply 15104/26/2013

r151 ... should have been more specific. Her sense of style dress-wise.

by Anonymousreply 15204/26/2013

I think those who love Meryl should know that there are those who watch her performances and think "look there's Meryl pretending to be _." I do see Meryl in every role she does, for me it looks like she is trying very hard at pretending to be whatever.

by Anonymousreply 15304/26/2013

[quote]I think those who love Meryl should know that there are those who watch her performances and think "look there's Meryl pretending to be _." I do see Meryl in every role she does, for me it looks like she is trying very hard at pretending to be whatever.

And, you don't think it's easier to Hepburn in any of her roles?

by Anonymousreply 15404/26/2013

Sorry, I meant to write:

And, you don't think it's easier to [italic]see[/italic] Hepburn in any of her roles?

by Anonymousreply 15504/26/2013

She ate a lot of pussy.

by Anonymousreply 15604/26/2013

[quote]She ate a lot of pussy.

Good for her.

by Anonymousreply 15704/26/2013

She was a terrible actress.

She won her Oscars through political circumstance.

She's the predecessor to today's reality TV stars: the people who like her don't actually want to see an actor playing a character, they want to see a personality.

"I don't think there's anyone who doesn't appreciate who the amount of love and gratitude."?

Why were we supposed to bow down at the altar of this no-talent actress? It's like The Emperor's New Clothes!

by Anonymousreply 15804/09/2014

Resurrecting old threads, R158, so you can rant more?

Don't want to "bow down"? Then don't bow down.

You know nothing about those who "like her" so stop pretending you do. You just don't like her. That's fine. You're not a rebel. You're not unique.

by Anonymousreply 15904/09/2014

She was famous for being famous....not a great actress. She actually was the same in Golden Pond, as in countless films prior.

by Anonymousreply 16004/09/2014

Yes, the same in EVERYTHING!

by Anonymousreply 16104/09/2014

She has a pretty solid reputation for being dead.

by Anonymousreply 16204/09/2014

Calla lilies

by Anonymousreply 16304/09/2014

Other people understand, OP. She was voted the number 1 female Screen Legend of the 20th Century by the American Film Institute.

by Anonymousreply 16404/09/2014

Barbara Stanwyck and Better Davis had better range, but Hepburn had a stronger personality. One of her famous quotes: ""I'm a personality as well as an actress. Show me an actress who isn't a personality, and you'll show me a woman who isn't a star."

by Anonymousreply 16504/09/2014

Both Stanwyck and Davis had strong personalities so that argument doesn't hold water, R65. To denigrate Hepburn, people pretend that Crawford and Davis and Stanwyck were these wallflowers that gave themselves over to their roles. Davis has as many mannerisms as Hepburn in her roles.

And then there's the whole "her Oscars were all political." Yes it was poltics alone that got her four awards and all those nominations.

The big different between Hepburn and other was that she had family money - and didn't go marrying men who would be financial drains on her. She had more control over her career than other actresses major and minor because she didn't have to take any role just to pay for her husbands or kids.

The big plus of Hepburn's career is that all through the 50's when the stars were dimming for others in terms of major movies and roles she kept right on plugging away: African Queen, Pat and Mike, Summertime, Rainmaker, Desk Set, Suddenly Last Summer. And while doing stage work as well.

Bette Davis should have been playing great roles all during the 50's to follow up on the success of All About Eve. She had to place the famous ad in the 60's looking for work to point out the stupidity of the Hollywood "system" that didn't create work for great actresses because they were "too old." "The Star" was campy fun but hardly AAE II.

by Anonymousreply 16604/27/2014

She was her own person. Had her own style. It's extraordinarily rare for a person to be as unique as she was.

by Anonymousreply 16704/27/2014

I burnt out on Hepburn decades ago.

by Anonymousreply 16804/27/2014

Very much agree, [167]. I'm willing to bet many of her fans and the general male and female public from her era admired the spirit of independence she embodied in so many ways. Due to the demands of cultural female conformity the majority could not exhibit the same in their personal normal lives.

by Anonymousreply 16904/27/2014

"So we're going to talk about me, are we? Oh goody!!!"

It's useless to compare and contrast Hepburn with other actresses. She was good/great in the roles she played(by and large) and, naturally, would have been sub-par in roles made famous by Davis, Crawford, Stanwyck et al. And vice- vice- vice-versa. Appreciate her for what she DID do.

by Anonymousreply 17004/27/2014

It's amazing how far her star has fallen. Young people today don't rate her at all. Her few fans are dead or being wheeled into the recreation room as we speak. Go to any drama school, young people don't consider her a good actress.

by Anonymousreply 17104/28/2014

The younger generation doesn't care about her because she was such a cold bitch both off-screen and on. Very unlikeable. She was always just playing characters similar to herself.

by Anonymousreply 17204/28/2014

[quote]Both Stanwyck and Davis had strong personalities so that argument doesn't hold water, [R65]. To denigrate Hepburn, people pretend that Crawford and Davis and Stanwyck were these wallflowers that gave themselves over to their roles. Davis has as many mannerisms as Hepburn in her roles.

Of course, those old dames had strong personalities. The difference being: Crawford, Davis, Stanwyck could dispense with their personalities to play a character.

Compare Davis' far superior turn in THE CORN IS GREEN to Hepburn's TV movie version. Hepburn brings her jarring New England accent to Wales.

We'll never forget, I'm sure, Davis' latter day TV appearances with cigarette in hand, but we can also watch many of her films and not see Davis at all, only her character. Davis was the most celebrated actress of the twentieth century - she was a STAH! and a Personality - but foremost she was an actress.

Hepburn is deserving of all the denigration she gets.

[quote]And then there's the whole "her Oscars were all political." Yes it was poltics alone that got her four awards and all those nominations.

True.

[quote]The big different between Hepburn and other was that she had family money - and didn't go marrying men who would be financial drains on her. She had more control over her career than other actresses major and minor because she didn't have to take any role just to pay for her husbands or kids.

Yet, she still turned out subpar work.

[quote]The big plus of Hepburn's career is that all through the 50's when the stars were dimming for others in terms of major movies and roles she kept right on plugging away: African Queen, Pat and Mike, Summertime, Rainmaker, Desk Set, Suddenly Last Summer. And while doing stage work as well.

My plaudits to her family's money.

[quote]Bette Davis should have been playing great roles all during the 50's to follow up on the success of All About Eve. She had to place the famous ad in the 60's looking for work to point out the stupidity of the Hollywood "system" that didn't create work for great actresses because they were "too old." "The Star" was campy fun but hardly AAE II.

Yes. Although, Davis did give a few good performances after - BABY JANE, THE VIRGIN QUEEN, SWEET CHARLOTTE - even in films she did only for the money. Davis lowered her stock by "reducing" herself to work to pay the bills. But that's what she had to do: pay the bills.

We get it. Some people like that she wore trousers. She was however an awful actress.

R158 is right. Were we supposed to applaud her 1981 Best Actress win? It was completely undeserved!

Limitations are one thing, every actor has them, but Hepburn had nothing but them - every line barked in the same way in the same accent and no one calling her out on it.

She really is the worst actress that ever lived.

by Anonymousreply 17304/28/2014

Cecil Beaton would have made a fine Datalounger. His hilarious diary entry about Kate:

"Katharine Hepburn is the egomaniac of all time and her whole life is devised to receive the standing ovation that she has had at the end of her great personality performance. As the play Coco nears its end and she is sure of her success, she becomes raged, the years roll off her, and she becomes a young schoolmistress. Up till then she has, to my way of thinking, been as unlike Chanel as anyone could be. With the manners of an old sea salt, spreading her ugly piano-calved legs in the most indecent positions, even kicking her protégée with her foot in the "London" scene, standing with her huge legs wide apart and being in every gesture as unfeminine and unlike the fascinating Chanel as anyone could be. Her performance is just one long series of personal mannerisms.

I would not have thought audiences could react so admiringly, yet the first time I saw a run-through rehearsal, I was impressed and even touched. But ever since I've found her performance mechanical, inept (her timing is erratic), she stops and laughs, she falters over words, she is maladroit, and she is ugly. That beautiful bone structure of cheekbone, nose and chin goes for nothing in the surrounding flesh of the New England shopkeeper. Her skin is revolting and since she does not apply enough make-up even from the front she appears pockmarked. In life her appearance is appalling, a raddled, rash-ridden, freckled, burnt, mottled, bleached and wizened piece of decaying matter. It is unbelievable, incredible that she can still be exhibited in public.

Fred Brisson tells me that one day he will repeat the vile things she has said about me. As it is I have heard that she has complained about my being difficult, stubborn. She obviously does not trust me or have confidence in my talent. She pretends to be fairly friendly and direct, but she has never given me any friendship, never spoken to me of anything that has not direct bearing on the part that she is playing.

I have determined not to have a row with her, have put up with a great deal of double-crossing, chicanery and even deceit. She has behaved unethically in altering her clothes without telling me, asserting her "own" taste instead of mine. (On the first night she appeared in her own hat instead of the one that went with the blue on her costume. Instead of the Chanel jewelry she wears a little paste brooch chosen by her friend . . . in quiet good taste.) She is suspicious and untrustworthy.

Never has anyone been so one-tracked in their determination to succeed. She knows fundamentally that she has no great talent as an actress. This gives her great insecurity so she must expend enormous effort in overcoming this by asserting herself in as strident a manner as only she knows how. She must always be proved right, only she knows, no matter what the subject. It is extraordinary that she has not been paid out for her lack of taking advice. But even if this is her last job, and it won't be, she will have had an incredible run for incredible money. She owns $20 million. She is getting $13,000 a week. But in spite of her success, her aura of freshness and natural directness, she is a rotten, ingrained viper. She has no generosity, no heart, no grace. She is a dried-up boot. Completely lacking in feminine grace, in manners, she cannot smile except to bare her teeth to give an effect of utter youthfulness and charm. (This, one of her most valuable stage assets, is completely without feeling.) She is ungenerous, never gives a present, and miserly. She lives like a miser, bullies Phyllis [Willbourn] and thinks only of herself day and night. Garbo has magic. Garbo is a miracle with many of the same faults, but Hepburn is synthetic, lacking in the qualities that would make such an unbearable human being into a real artist.

I hope I never have to see her again."

by Anonymousreply 17404/28/2014

He captures her so well!

by Anonymousreply 17504/28/2014

See her God awful TV movie adaptation of THE GLASS MENAGERIE. She plays Amanda Wingfield the same way she played Coco Chanel - (who was the very epitome of grace above all else) - and renders her into a shrill Katherine Hepburn parody. And all with the least Southern accent imaginable!

Did that woman ever actually play a character? Cate Blanchett's parody of her was more nuanced than she ever was.

I still can't believe tomatoes weren't threwn at her for playing those characters sitting with their legs spread! Which was, of course, how Hepburn sat in real life.

by Anonymousreply 17604/28/2014

You nay hate her as much as you like and accept Cecil Beaton's words as holly gospel, but "ugly piano-calved legs" she most certainly did not have.

by Anonymousreply 17704/28/2014

The "point" that ALL her Oscars and nominations were political is absurd.

You don't like her. Fine. You cannot speak for ALL young people and say no one likes her, remembers her, etc.

Subpar work that includes Little Women, Bringing Up Baby, Philadelphia Story, Woman of the Year, African Queen, Summertime and Long Day's Journey is not bad.

And the generalization that she is the same in every film over 60 years is equally absurd. You see what you want to see. (And you'll go the same is true for me. So be it.)

I'm glad we had all of them - Davis, Stanwyck and Hepburn.

by Anonymousreply 17804/28/2014

[quote]The "point" that ALL her Oscars and nominations were political is absurd.

You're the one who made that point. And no it isn't.

[quote]You don't like her. Fine. You cannot speak for ALL young people and say no one likes her, remembers her, etc.

This isn't opinion. This is fact. Go to a drama school and ask young people what they think of Hepburn and her abilities. She damaged her legacy with her dismissal of the screen actress that they do consider the greatest in film history - Meryl Streep. Some will have only a passing acquaintanceship with her name. Some will bemoan her lack of range - again, they consider Streep and her determination to become the character, any character, gospel. Compare her IMDb board and Google results to Davis. She isn't Yvette Vickers - no one claimed she was - but there aren't legions of young actors aspiring to be like her. I'm sure some person under thirty like her, but average fan is old(er).

[quote]Subpar work that includes Little Women, Bringing Up Baby, Philadelphia Story, Woman of the Year, African Queen, Summertime and Long Day's Journey is not bad.

You've simply listed a few of her films. What was so good about that recycled performance? She was the same in every single one of those films. And she was completely miscast as LONG DAY'S JOURNEY INTO NIGHT, anyone who thinks her affected performance in that adaptation does the role justice needs to see it done properly.

[quote]And the generalization that she is the same in every film over 60 years is equally absurd. You see what you want to see.

No, it isn't. In what film did she attempt an accent? In what film was she not totally affected? In what film did she change her body language to that of the character? Streep, for instance, changes her mannerisms to fit the role. She lets the role tell her what to do, as do all good actors.

Amanda Wingfield is Southern. She doesn't sound like she's from Connecticut.

If you think she didn't bring the same persona to every role you're not seeing what you want to see - you're blind. Even some more ardent defenses of her nonexistent abilities are not blunt enough to suggest she transformed herself for roles.

All actors do have their limitations, though; Hepburn's however were so jarring she rendered her as beyond every role, becoming merely a personality who appeared in films.

[quote]I'm glad we had all of them - Davis, Stanwyck and Hepburn.

I'm glad we had Davis, Stanwyck and Crawford.

I present more valid argument - rightfully questioning in what films she didn't play the role the same way she played every other, and her tendency for hollow theatrical emotional when Davis, Streep, Stankwyck and others opted for more truthful subtleties - so I win.

by Anonymousreply 17904/28/2014

We are compulsive a little,R179,aren't we? Ok, you won. Now what?

by Anonymousreply 18004/28/2014

r179 hates lesbians, period. No need to write an essay dumbfuck, just get to the point: you cannot stand her.

Now go play with yourself.

by Anonymousreply 18104/28/2014

No, R181, I can't stand bad actresses.

I was complimentary to Stanwyck!

by Anonymousreply 18204/28/2014

Who cares? You're an embarrassment going on your tirades yapping about how the woman who has won the most oscars in history is a "bad actress".

Step away from the computer and go get a life.

by Anonymousreply 18304/28/2014

Good, Better, Best, BETTE!

by Anonymousreply 18504/28/2014

Bette would never have gotten the roles that Stanwyck, Hepburn or even Crawford got in the 1950s because she had gotten FAT. Way fat.

by Anonymousreply 18604/28/2014

blah blah blah r184, you don't like her, you're in the minority and you cannot wrap your brain about it. Keep telling yourself her 4 (!) oscars have no merit, you just sound like a fool. You're an absolute bore with no tastes.

by Anonymousreply 18704/28/2014

STANWYCK on fire!

by Anonymousreply 18804/28/2014

The fabulous Miss CRAWFORD!

by Anonymousreply 18904/28/2014

[quote]Bette would never have gotten the roles that Stanwyck, Hepburn or even Crawford got in the 1950s because she had gotten FAT. Way fat.

How long did it take her to get into her girdle?

by Anonymousreply 19104/28/2014

Barbara and Joanie embrace.

by Anonymousreply 19204/28/2014

This one's funny! Stanwyck looks on form the shadows. Look at Crawford's face:

by Anonymousreply 19304/28/2014

Babs and Joanie with husbands...Joan looks like she's in love.

by Anonymousreply 19404/28/2014

'You're the Top!'

by Anonymousreply 19504/28/2014

The Streep Loons are shitting all over this thread. How predictable.

Those tenth-rate drama students may worship Streep, but none of Streep's movies are considered classics by any prominent film critic, theoretician or historian; the same can't be said about Hepburn's films. You can't be herald as the greatest actress in the history of motion pictures with a pitiful filmography. None of Streep's movies will last the test of time--none of them. That's why you Streep fangirls are upset: you know your empress can't compete with the actresses from the Golden Age of Hollywood, and Hepburn's legendary status will always trump that of Streep's. Live with it.

Twenty years from now people will look at The Iron Lady as an accidental, campy, black comedy with the same filmmaking deficiencies as Mommie Dearest.

by Anonymousreply 19604/28/2014

Jesus, R196, renew your meds. I hear they're almost free on Medicaid.

by Anonymousreply 19704/28/2014

I am sorry but younger people are not going out and renting Katharine Hepburn films. Most of them don't even know who she is.

Comparing Hepburn and Streep is pointless. They are of completely different generations. Streep has more talent and has been popular more or less all of her film career, whereas Hepburn went through long stretches where she was out of favor and box office poison. Late in her career, she scared people and primarily made shitty television movies.

My complaint about her is that she was a mean, closeted lesbian. Her acting style was boring and repetitive. She is a dinosaur of a different era, and good riddance.

by Anonymousreply 19804/28/2014

[quote] I am sorry but younger people are not going out and renting Katharine Hepburn films. Most of them don't even know who she is.

We're not talking about your common moviegoer. Most of them don't know shit, anyway. Why are you using "young people" as a measuring stick to judge who is popular or not? Such arguments immediately crumble because "young people" aren't the only people that matter in this conversation. Furthermore, young people wouldn't need to go out and rent Hepburn movies when there's AMC and TCM that play them in heavy rotation. (I'm only 30 and I've seen all of her greatest films on TCM during Star of the Month.) Hepburn is a National Treasure because channels like that keep her legacy alive, rightly so! Most people who are serious about films know who Hepburn is, and her movies continue to live on.

That will not be the case for Our Lady of the Accents. The only thing people will remember about Streep when she dies are those useless Oscar nominations. None of her films where she's the star will be included in the AMC 100 Greatest Films or Sight & Sound. At least Hepburn has the films -- even the films where she didn't win Best Actress -- to back up why she even have the most Oscar wins.

by Anonymousreply 19904/28/2014

Sorry, I meant the AFI Greatest Film list.

by Anonymousreply 20004/28/2014

Right, and what if AMC or TMC go the way of Ladies Home Journal? I don't want to argue with you. They both have a place in cinema. Streep's films will be remembered because of her body of work, and the fact that she completely changed and expanded the range of roles that were acceptable for a movie actress to play. Trying to erase her legacy is not going to work. She has films like Sophie's Choice and Angels in America, etc. that will be watched for eternity.

by Anonymousreply 20104/28/2014

[quote]She really is the worst actress that ever lived.

I don't disagree with you, but, Jesus, you lost all credibility with this statement.

by Anonymousreply 20204/28/2014

[quote]Our Lady of the Accents

HA HA HA

by Anonymousreply 20304/28/2014

Is that all there is?

by Anonymousreply 20404/28/2014

She became a star at a time when actors were expected to be recognizable regardless of the role. Sissy Spacek or Streep would have gotten nowhere in those days. The main exceptions were people like Lon Cheney or Paul Muni who were expected to dress up in costume as different people.

She did a lot within her range--"It Happened Last Summer" versus "Adam's Rib". It's a bit like criticizing Bogart for being the same guy in "African Queen" and "Casablanca". She also took on what were then unconventional parts (a lawyer in "Adams's Rib" and put them over well.

Some people could adapt their persona to heavy drama and light comedy like Cary Grant. Hepburn didn't have quite his facility (he had no trouble making fun of himself) but essentially she was able to do both kinds of pictures Others were rather stuck--John Wayne was awful when he wasn't in buckskin.

by Anonymousreply 20504/28/2014

Martin Scorsese did a lot to damage Hepburn's reputation to Generation Y. The way he portrayed her and her family in The Aviator pretty much hung them out to dry and exaggerated their characteristics to become grotesque, narcissistic 'champagne socialist' types. Blanchett was not directed to play Kate as anything other than a phony. Scorsese obviously had a chip on his shoulder about Hepburn and her ilk:

by Anonymousreply 20604/29/2014

She was a total mean cunt. Look at this clip of her before doing an interview with Dick Cavett - she bitches and complains about everything from tables to the carpet. She was nothing but a spoiled rich bitch her whole life.

by Anonymousreply 20704/29/2014

There is no Hepburn movie called It Happened Last Summer, R205. Big fan, aren't you?

by Anonymousreply 20804/29/2014

[quote]She was a total mean cunt. Look at this clip of her before doing an interview with Dick Cavett - she bitches and complains about everything from tables to the carpet. She was nothing but a spoiled rich bitch her whole life.

That's pretty funny, R207. Can't you tell she's joking? Sheesh.

by Anonymousreply 20904/29/2014

[quote]I don't disagree with you, but, Jesus, you lost all credibility with this statement.

What an odd comment.

by Anonymousreply 21004/29/2014

Leaving Streep aside for a moment...

There once was a time when Hepburn was held in higher regard than she was today, thankfully that era has passed, and Bette Davis is now regarded as the greatest actress of the Golden Age - and rightfully so.

Hepburn was a screen persona. She affected the persona of an upperclass Great ACTAH! onscreen and off but her performance (note the singular) rarely lived up to the attitude she touted. Davis, on the other hand, brought dimension, subtlety, versatility and depth to her performances - even in lesser films - that elevated her far above Hepburn.

When Davis delivered her lines you could temporarily forget you were watching her and see only the character (no prosthetics required), while Hepburn so often simply barked them, employing her usual mannerisms.

Can anyone imagine Hepburn delivering a performance with the depth and nuance Bette did in NOW, VOYAGER? WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO BABY JANE? MR SKEFFINGTON? No. Hepburn would have played the role the same way she played every other. She lacked the ability to give herself over to what the role asked for and instead forced her own persona upon the role - playing Coco Chanel with her legs spread in Connecticut accent being one of the most succinct examples.

Hepburn’s performance (again note the singular) was little more than a collection of mannerisms - an affected pause, a tilted chin, a gasp to stop from crying, an arched imitation of a laugh - all little “look-at-me!” tics.

It might’ve been enjoyable for those who like seeing their favourite star, but it’s not to be confused with actual acting talent, let alone on par with the brilliance Davis could achieve at her best.

by Anonymousreply 21105/07/2014

Other than bitching about her personally you might want to check out the trojan women along with the lion in winter - mentioned above -

by Anonymousreply 21205/07/2014

For me it's a tie between Davis and Hepburn. BOTH of them act with a series of tics that are extremely annoying.

by Anonymousreply 21305/07/2014

[quote]Other than bitching about her personally

You must have read something different from what I've posted. I haven't bitched about her personally, I've critiqued her acting abilities.

by Anonymousreply 21405/07/2014

Hepburn is absolutely the most overrated actress ever. Davis was great, but there's a case to be made for Stanwyck being the best actress of her generation.

by Anonymousreply 21505/07/2014

She was overvalued by the Acamdeny too. Four Oscars before Barbara Stanwyck got her Honorary one?

by Anonymousreply 21605/07/2014

Academy.

Sorry.

by Anonymousreply 21705/07/2014

Hi all, In reaction to all previous posts: I think she's great, a real 'powerhouse'. Stop talking shit! Just watch the movies and you'll see what a wonderful person/actress/persona she is ! Regards, Miranda Mets

by Anonymousreply 21810/16/2014

Truthfully we never could stand her. Her sickening whiny screeching voice. She was an adultress going with a married man Tracy they made us sick . They got to do movies because of who they were actress /actor & money. Same old acting /same old whiny voice. Rarely do we watch any of her movies. We will take Betty Davis anytime over Hepburn. Sorry Hepburn lovers we never liked her. If it were us whoring around with a married man we'd have never heard the end of it. High society covered for her.

by Anonymousreply 21911/14/2014

Wow, the similar bitching here over Streep and Hepburn is intense. They both engender the same kind of polarized reactions (she's great/she's horrible) that are typical for gay icons. In terms of acting style, there is more of a straight line from Bette Davis to Meryl Streep. So even if Hepburn had more glamour, she would rank third in acting. The end.

by Anonymousreply 22011/14/2014

Did she have PS? It seems that she looked like a totally different woman after 1938. Or she had better makeup.

by Anonymousreply 22111/14/2014

Charlie, you're full of it, she was very overrated.

by Anonymousreply 22204/21/2015

I realize this is an old thread, but it was tons of fun to read. To the Hepburn vs. Streep people, your admiration, either side is noted. But you've all missed the point.

The difference is this. In Hepburn's era people went to see Hepburn in movies. This is Streep's era, and most of us don't want to see the actors, we want to RELATE to the characters. Streep delivers there like Hepburn never could. But Hepburn delivered, in her era, what Streep chooses not to. Comparing 'em is fun, but hello, apples and oranges.

by Anonymousreply 22306/12/2015

It worked the same back in the day than it still works now. Hollywood decides who becomes a star and who stays on top. Otherwise I have no idea why George Clooney, Tom Cruise and Channing Tatum are still staring in movies.

by Anonymousreply 22406/12/2015
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