Movie Marathon Wrap-up #02: Ernst Lubitsch

To Be or Not to Be

All of Lubitsch’s strengths in top-form and mixed seamlessly into a smart, biting satire of Nazi Germany. Wit and humor are fired in rapid fashion and hit their mark perfectly.

The acting troupe from To Be or Not to Be


James Stewart, The Shop Around the Corner

A charismatic and charming performance, laced with subtlety and nuance, fitted perfectly for Lubitsch’s sophisticated style.

James Stewart from The Shop Around the Corner


Miriam Hopkins, Trouble in Paradise & Design for Living

Yes, I it’s a tie. Miriam Hopkins and herself again because one Miriam Hopkins is not enough. Feisty, sexy, vibrant and impassioned, she easily is able to give life to any picture she’s in.

Miriam Hopkins in Design for Living


“Heil Myself”, To Be or Not to Be

The single scene in the entire marathon that made me literally laugh way out loud in an instant. Lubitsch’s funniest moment, and the surprise factor is essential for the gag to work.

Tom Dugan as Bronski as Hitler in To Be or Not to Be


“Concentration Camp Ehrhardt”, To Be or Not to Be

One of the smartest things about it is how it’s used once in an already fairly amusing fashion, and then again later in a scene that is genuinely comedic and bitingly satiric at the same time. 

Jack Benny and Sig Ruman in To Be or Not to Be



6 thoughts on “Movie Marathon Wrap-up #02: Ernst Lubitsch

  1. I just stumbled across your weblog. Thanks for the ideas – I have not heard of many of these films before. How did you select the themes for your first two marathons? Just a couple of directors whose work you always wanted to see?

    • Hi John, yeah these are just pretty much just films from directors that I’ve either always been interested in or had a sudden compelling interest in seeing.

      I should really keep a running list of potential marathon topics somewhere on the sidebar, but while I haven’t done so, you might be interested in seeing my list of potential marathon topics on letterboxd 🙂 here’s the link:

      I took a look at your blog and was thrilled to see that it’s about movie marathons as well!

    • I don’t quite have the time to watch the films in one sitting so I spread them out 🙂 A 24-hour marathon sounds fun, but even if I had the time, I’m not confident in my ability to keep myself awake through the whole thing, lol 😀

  2. Its my way of catching up with the great movies – in the most efficient way possible – all at once! 🙂

    Thanks for the link to your marathon topics. We’ll have to trade ideas soon! If you’d like to try out a genre marathon, I’d recommend going for the Western. I was surprised at past movie marathons how good Westerns could actually be. “The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance” and “Unforgiven” come to mind as outstanding films.

    • Yeah, I plan on jumping on Westerns soon enough 🙂 But first I need to finish writing reviews for this Paul W.S. Anderson marathon I’m doing… then I’m doing Charlie Chaplin… then maybe I’ll do my Western Marathon.

      For the Westerns, I’ve got Liberty Valance,Rio Bravo, Stagecoach, The Searchers & High Noon. So mostly straightforward westerns.

      If I even get to the Revisionist Western subgenre, then I’ll definitely include Unforgiven as well as The Wild Bunch, Django Unchained, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford & The Outlaw Josey Wales

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