Movieland Mystery Photo (Updated + + + +)

Escape Me Never
This week’s mystery movie has been the 1947 Warner Bros. picture “Escape Me Never,” with Errol Flynn, Ida Lupino, Eleanor Parker, Gig Young, Reginald Denny, Isobel Elsom, Albert Bassermann and Ludwig Stossel. The screenplay was by Thames Williamson, from the novel and play by Margaret Kennedy. The ballet sequences were staged and directed by LeRoy Prinz, with Milada Mladova and George Zoritch and the corps de ballet. The photography was by Sol Polito, art direction by Carl Weyl, set decorations by Fred M. MacLean, special effects by Harry Barndollar and Willard Van Enger, wardrobe by Bernard Newman, ballet costumes by Travilla, makeup by Perc Westmore, orchestration by Hugo Friedhofer and musical direction by Leo F. Forbstein. Music by Erich Wolfgang Korngold. The producer was Henry Blanke and the director was Peter Godfrey.

“Escape Me Never” is available from Warner Archive for $21.99.

Kennedy’s “Escape Me Never” ran on Broadway for 96 performances in early 1935, starring Elisabeth Bergner.

Reviewing the play in the New York Times (Feb. 10, 1935), Brooks Atkinson said:

… “Escape Me never” is a mediocre charade, and no fair match for “The Constant Nymph,” which preceded it several years ago. How mediocre it is I did not realize until I attempted to read the text, for one of the qualities of Miss Bergner’s acting is to make it seem beguiling on stage. As the bedraggled little waif and mother who skips through its gaucheries and sentimentalities, Miss Bergner plays with virtuosity that is pure enchantment. She is the gamine whose legs and head itch; she is the mocking coquette; she is the bold hussy, the unselfish slave, the frantic mother and the cool queen of tragedy. As the author of the drama Miss Kennedy has never made these several pictures look like anything finer than nimble tricks of the nimble trade of hack writing.

The play was turned into a British film with Bergner, Hugh Sinclair, Griffith Jones and Penelope Dudley-Ward.  A low-quality print has been uploaded to YouTube.

Writing in the New York Times (Nov. 8, 1947), Bosley Crowther ripped the Warner Bros. film:

Agreed that “Escape Me Never” was no great shakes the first time around, being a trifling bit of flimflam about a small lady’s loyalty to a cad. As now performed by Miss Lupino as the lady and by Errol Flynn as the cad, it becomes something harsh and unbelievable, like a terrible faux-pas in a grade-school play.

Miss Lupino is downright embarrassing, the way she bounces and kitty-cats around, alternately clutching an infant and Mr. Flynn to her heaving breast. And Mr. Flynn, as a chap named Sebastian who writes music, plays a concertina and loves to flirt, throws himself into his performance with the enthusiasm of a singing-waiter in a Hoboken café.

They’re not to blame entirely. The script is a frightful thing, starting out in a musical-comedy humor and ending up in a bath of tragic tears. And Peter Godfrey’s so-called direction is cause for a damage suit against the whole retinue of Warner Brothers by the exploited members of the cast—among whom, incidentally, Eleanor Parker has our deepest sympathy.

But Mr. Flynn and Miss Lupino—or the other way around, if you please—could have countered with passive resistance and saved us all from a pitiable ordeal.

Jan. 1, 2018, Mystery Photo

For our first mystery photo of 2018, we have a mystery gent.

Update: This is Anthony Caruso.

Jan. 2, 2018, Mystery Photo

For Tuesday, we have Mystery Ballerina No. 1, Mystery Dancer No. 1….

Update: This is George Zoritch, whom I recognized from my Tucson days because he taught dance at the University of Arizona from 1973 to 1987. Howard Mandelbaum has identified Ballerina No. 1 as Helen Pender, and I have no better answer to offer.

Jan. 2, 2018, Mystery Photo
… and Mystery Ballerina No. 2.

Update: This is Milada Mladova.

Brain Trust roll call: Howard Mandelbaum (mystery movie and Monday’s mystery guest), Michael Ryerson (Monday’s mystery guest), Tucson Barbara (Monday’s mystery guest), Timothy (Monday’s mystery guest), B.J. Merholz (Monday’s mystery guest), Robert Morrissey (Monday’s mystery guest), Jenny M. (Monday’s mystery guest), Don Danard (Monday’s mystery guest), Sarah (Monday’s mystery guest), Lee Ann, Megan and Thom (Monday’s mystery guest) and Sylvia E. (Monday’s mystery guest).

Jan. 3, 2018, Mystery Photo

For Wednesday, we have a trio of mystery guests.

Update: This is Albert Bassermann, Isobel Elsom and Reginald Denny.

Brain Trust roll call: Sheila (Monday’s mystery gent), Howard Mandelbaum (Tuesday’s mystery dancers), Jenny M. (mystery movie), Lee Ann, Megan and Thom (mystery movie, Tuesday’s mystery dancer and Mystery Ballerina No. 2), Mike Hawks (Monday’s mystery gent) and McDee (Monday’s mystery gent).

Jan. 4, 2018, Mystery Photo

For Thursday, our mystery photographer puts the camera on the ground in this setup for our two mystery guests.

Update: This is Gig Young and Eleanor Parker.

Brain Trust roll call: Howard Mandelbaum (Wednesday’s mystery guests), Mary Mallory (mystery movie, Tuesday’s Mystery Dancer and Mystery Ballerina No. 2, and Wednesday’s mystery guests No. 2 and No. 3), Mike Hawks (mystery movie and Wednesday’s mystery guests), Don Danard (Wednesday’s mystery guest No. 2 ), Lee Ann, Megan and Thom (Wednesday’s mystery guests) and Sylvia E. (mystery movie, Monday’s mystery guest, Dance No. 2 and Mystery Ballerina No. 2 and Wednesday’s mystery guests).

Jan. 5, 2018, Mystery Photo

For Friday, we have two non-mysterious guests.

Update: This is Errol Flynn and Ida Lupino.

Brain Trust roll call: Mary Mallory (Thursday’s mystery guests), Howard Mandelbaum (Thursday’s mystery guests), Mike Hawks (Thursday’s mystery guests), Jenny M. (Thursday’s mystery guests), Michael Ryerson (mystery movie and Thursday’s mystery guests), Don Danard (Thursday’s mystery guests), Sylvia E. (mystery movie and Monday’s mystery guest, Tuesday’s mystery dancer and Ballerina No. 2, Wednesday’s mystery guests and Thursday’s mystery guests) and Tucson Barbara (Tuesday’s mystery dancer and Mystery Ballerina No. 2, Wednesday’s mystery guests and Thursday’s mystery guests).

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About lmharnisch

I am retired from the Los Angeles Times
This entry was posted in Film, Hollywood, Mystery Photo and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

51 Responses to Movieland Mystery Photo (Updated + + + +)

  1. Howard Mandelbaum says:

    Anthony Caruso.

    Like

  2. Howard Mandelbaum says:

    Anthony Caruso in ESCAPE ME NEVER.

    Like

  3. tucsonbarbara says:

    Anthony Caruso

    Like

  4. Timothy says:

    Anthony Caruso?

    Like

  5. Benito says:

    Sir Lawrence Olivier, after a date with Danny Kaye

    Like

  6. Robert Morrissey says:

    That’s Anthony Caruso, no? SO many films, including the wonderful Asphalt Jungle.

    Like

  7. Jenny M says:

    Anthony Caruso

    Like

  8. Don Danard says:

    I’d say today’s Mystery Guest is Anthony Caruso.

    Like

  9. Sarah says:

    It’s Anthony Caruso!

    Like

  10. Lee Ann, Megan and Thom says:

    Our guess for Monday’s guest is Anthony Caruso.

    Like

  11. SylviaE says:

    Monday – Anthony Caruso

    Like

    • SylviaE says:

      Another fun puzzle.

      The movie is Escape Me Never (and what a plot)

      Monday – Anthony Caruso

      Tuesday – the male dancer is George Zoritch
      not sure of ballerina #1
      ballerina #2 is Milada Mladova

      Wednesday – from left to right:
      I think – (seated) Albert Basserman, (seated) Isobel Elsom, (standing) Reginald Denny

      Like

      • SylviaE says:

        The movie is Escape Me Never and to continue…

        Monday – Anthony Caruso

        Tuesday – the male dancer is George Zoritch
        not sure of ballerina #1
        ballerina #2 is Milada Mladova

        Wednesday – from left to right:
        I think – (seated) Albert Basserman, (seated) Isobel Elsom, (standing) Reginald Denny

        Thursday – Gig Young and Eleanor Parker

        I’m guessing that Friday will include Ida Lupino and Errol Flynn.

        Like

  12. mikesmaddie says:

    The man kind of looks like Ronald Colman.

    But I don’t think it is.

    Like

  13. Sheila says:

    Anthony Caruso for Monday.

    Like

  14. Gary says:

    I will make it easy for you with a multiple choice: this is Vera Ralston in either Lake Placid Serenade or Ice Capades 1941; or Dorothy Lewis in Ice Capades 1941. Your choice.

    Like

  15. Jenny M says:

    Movie – Escape Me Never

    Like

  16. Lee Ann, Megan, and Thom says:

    We weren’t absolutely sure yesterday. Our choice is Escape Me Never with George Zoritch as the mystery dancer and Milada Mladova for mystery ballerina #2. (It was a little hard to tell from the angle of her face.)

    Like

  17. Dancing couple: Helen Pender & George Zoritch.

    Like

  18. Mike Hawks says:

    Anthony Caruso.

    Like

  19. mcdee says:

    Monday’s mystery guest looks like Anthony Caruso.

    Like

  20. Albert Bassermann, Isabel Elsom and Reginald Denny.

    Like

  21. mary mallory says:

    ESCAPE ME NEVER. Eleanor Parker, George Zoritch, and Milada Mladova Tuesday, and Reginald Denny and Isobel Elsom today.

    Like

  22. Mike Hawks says:

    ESCAPE ME NEVER with Albert Basserman, Isobel Elsom and Reginald Denny.

    Like

  23. Don Danard says:

    Is the Lady in the Wednesday photo Isobel Elsom?

    Like

  24. Lee Ann, Megan and Thom says:

    Today’s guests are Albert Bassermann. Isobel Elsom, and Reginald Denny.

    Like

  25. mary mallory says:

    Mario Soletti Monday, Ludwig Stossel yesterday, and Gig Young and Eleanor Parker today.

    Like

  26. Gig Young and Eleanor Parker.

    Like

  27. Mike Hawks says:

    Gig Young and Eleanor Parker.

    Like

  28. Jenny M says:

    Gig Young and Eleanor Parker

    Like

  29. Thursday looks suspiciously like Gig Young and Eleanor Parker. Which then makes this likely Escape Me Never (1947) with Errol Flynn and Ida Lupino.

    Like

  30. Don Danard says:

    Gig Young and Eleanor Parker today I’d say.

    Like

  31. Diane Ely says:

    John Boles on Thursday?

    Like

  32. tucsonbarbara says:

    Escape Me Never

    Tuesday – George Zoritch, Milada Mladova
    Wednesday – Albert Bassermann, Isobel Elsom, Reginald Denny
    Thursday – Gig Young, Eleanor Parker

    Like

  33. mary mallory says:

    Errol F. and Ida L. today.

    Like

  34. Gary says:

    Errol Flynn and Ida Lupino in Escape Me Never. Remember when Errol’s autobiography, My Wicked Wicked Ways, was a best seller? There was a time people in Hollywood were expected to behave that way …for our further off-screen pleasures. Now? My how times have changed!

    Like

  35. beachgal says:

    Thurs is Eleanor Parker and Gig Young in Escape Me Never.

    Like

  36. beachgal says:

    Fri we have Errol and Ida.

    Like

  37. Mike Hawks says:

    Errol and Ida get musical.

    Like

  38. tucsonbarbara says:

    Errol Flynn and Ida Lupino

    Like

  39. SylviaE says:

    Friday – Errol Flynn and Ida Lupino (though I was hoping it would the shot from the movie of Flynn holding the baby and leaning on a walking stick) Can’t wait to hear who Tuesday’s Mystery Ballerina #1 is.

    This was fun.

    Like

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