Yesterday I posted about Burton Holmes, travel guru and the inventor of the ‘travelogue’–movies showing the public exotic lands that they could never hope to travel too. The post shows views of Hollywood in the early 1930s, by then Holmes adopted home base. Above is another reel of Hollywood-based Holmes footage from the same era. In it we actually see Holmes himself chatting merrily away with at least a couple of stars of the era. First is Lupe Velez (I think–or it might be Dolores Del Rio? Anyone have any guesses on this?). Next up is Phillips Holmes, pictured at home with his dog and an unidentified man who might be Holmes then life-partner. Holmes was a closeted gay man whose ‘beard’ was the singer Libby Holman–she seemed to specialize in giving glamorous young gay actors this protection. (Her later ‘partner’ was Montgomery Clift). Holmes dog performs some neat tricks with a balloon, and then we’re off to the beach for some serious cavorting and camping. I can’t identify any of the players, though I sure wish I knew who that saucy dame at 6:40 is. (Holmes, who I assume is operating the camera, also is smitten with her and devotes a good deal of screen time to her…um…rump). Finally we’re back to the land, parked in what may be ‘The Garden Of Allah’, with more cavorting in the swimming pool. The general air one gets from these movies is one of delight in the Hollywood lifestyle–the sun/beach/outdoors of it all. Indeed, the as-yet unspoiled Los Angeles of the era seems paradisicle–if that’s a word…a far cry from the hostile and congested city it morphed into ninety years later.


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2 Responses

    1. Hi Andrew–once you watch enough YouTube it gets to know what you like–every morning I’m presented with YT’s idea of what I might enjoy. But often that’s not what I choose to show/write about. My obsessions are distinct (film, music, urban history0–they come quickly but are fleeting–so I try to grab what’s interesting while I’m still interested. Thanks for watching.

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