I do not know about you but I have decided what I am going to do these coming holidays. I am going to lock myself in with four bottles of vodka, ice, orange juice, four dozen hard-boiled eggs (already boiled), one kilo of cheese (not Amul or Vijaya or Aarey), and a whole pile of video cassettes of old films.
And I have already selected the cassettes. Humphrey Bogart, Ingrid Bergman, Paul Henreid and Claude Raines in Casablanca; Humphrey Bogart, Mary Astor, Sydney Greenstreet, Peter Lorre in The Malteses Falcon; Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall in The Big Sleep and Night Passage; James Cagney and Pat Oâ€™ Brien in Angels With Dirty Faces.
I intend to see once again The FBI Story with James Stewart; National Velvet with Mickey Rooney and Elizabeth Taylor; The Homes-tretch with Cornel Wilde and Maureen Oâ€™ Hara; Hemingwayâ€™s Farewell To Arms with Rock Hudson and Jennifer Jones, and For Whom The Bells Toll with Tyrone Power and Rita Hayworth, ah, a manâ€™s picture, that is! And David O. Selznikâ€™s Duel In The Sun with Gregory Peck, Joseph Cotton and Jennifer Jones, which they showed on Doordarshan with the guts removed.
And I intend to see some of the old Westerns: Destry Rides Again with Kames Stewart and Marlene Dietrich; High Noon with Gary Cooper and Grace Kelly; all the versions of Stage Coach; and both Jesse James with Tyrone Power and The Return of Frank James with our very own Henry Fonda. (Also, Twelve Angry Men with Mr. Fonda, just to check how carefully and without compunctions the recent Hindi film was copied from it). and all the Westerns of Randolph Scott, Robert Ryan, and, for old times sake, a sample of those singing cowboys, Roy Rogers and Gene Autrey.
And the Road films, with Bob Hope-Bing Crosby-Dorothy Lamour: Road To Alaska, Rio, Bali, Hong Kong. And the musicals: Betty Grable and Harry James, Kathryn Grayson, June Allyson and Van Johnson, Frank Sinatra and Gene Kelly, Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers and Eleanor Powell, Donald Oâ€™ Connor and Jane Powell, Esther Williams and Red Skelton in Bathing Beauty, Betty Hutton as Annie Oakely, The Ziegfield Follies. In the Good Old Summertime, An American In Paris, Till The Clouds Roll By, Down Argentina Way.
And I intend to see all the Thin Man series, the Andy Hardy series, Rocky one to four, though these may be quite contemporary, and the other great boxing films: Mickey Rooney as Killer McCoy, Paul Newman playing world middleweight champion Rocky Graziano in Somebody Up There Likes Me, and John Garfield in Body And Soul.
And, between the movies, I will have a little vodka.