Profile: Mary Costes

Mar 22, 2022

Mary Costes with a high toque made of black feathers with a side arrangement of yellow flowers by Louise Bourbon. Photo by d' Ora. Credit: Ullstein Bild

 Photo dedicated to Egyptian magazine, Al Lataif Al Musawara in September 1930
 Mary, a candidate at the Grand Prix of Elegance at the Great Palace, walks in front of the jury on June 23, 1932 in Paris, France. Credit: Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone

After September 2, 1930, Mary Costes, the 27-year-old film actress, became a world famous personality when her husband Dieudonné Costes, along with Maurice Bellonte, flew from Paris to New York in 37 hours and 18 minutes. Their house at 14 Marronniers Street was teeming with visitors and well-wishers. At the time, Mary had only been in Paris for 3 years and was willing to go to Hollywood once her contract with her film company would expire. Mary, born Princess Mary Vatchnadze, is of Caucasian origin and descends from an old Georgian family.

Myrna Loy Wearing From Saks Fifth Avenue

Mar 20, 2022

A rare, uncirculated photograph of Myrna Loy wearing a dress from Saks Fifth Avenue was originally published by Vogue magazine on October 15, 1935. The costume was a ruby-red velvet, wide-skirted dress with a close-fitting bodice outlined in Point de Venis along with a Reboux's flirtatious red feather hat. Jewels were from Brand-Chatillon.

Midnight Mystery, 1930 Film Critique

Mar 11, 2022

Ivan Lebedeff, Betty Compson and Hugh Trevor in Midnight Mystery, 1930.

Sally Wayne was right about her interest in novels. That certain interest saved Gregory Sloane for a murder he didn't commit. Her detective twist at the end was great, but there are points that are not convincing, not her acting but scenes that could have been added or handled better. When Sally went upstairs crying with Tom following her after finding Mischa's body and seeing Gregory pleading for his innocence, she closed the door and started the Valine/Poison experiment. The scene was not clear enough to show that Sally was well aware that Tom is following her and is certainly coming to her room. It could have been someone else that drinks the mixed alcohol. The most important scene which the entire film is dependent on is Tom's confession. When asked how she knew he was going to confess and she said it was from a novel, that was a relatively weak point because he simply may have not confessed. When Sally took Tom's button from Mischa's hand and while the rescuer, as he said himself at the end, watched her, he didn't say anything at the time though it was alarming. A simple and quick scene could have been added for a smooth sequence and to prepare the viewer that there was a dummy or more in the house that will be later used for Mischa's corpse. It was sudden without any previous reference to see that Gregory had one and dressed it for that purpose.

A Song That No Longer Exists

Feb 23, 2022

"You'll Be Sorry Just Too Late" was apparently a popular song by Billy Gaston, released in 1907. Oliver Hardy sang part of it in The Laughing Gravy's 3 reel version in 1931 which starts after the twenty fourth minute in the film. Although the lyrics and the sheet music exist on the Web, I'm yet to find one single record of the song apart from Hardy's performance, but thanks to Mr. Hardy for letting us know about the tune. Published by Shapiro Music Publisher, Cor Broadway & Thirty Ninth Street, New York, the lyrics are:

I feel blue, all through you,
And you ought to feel so too;
When you’re cross, it’s your lose,
You just cannot be my boss.
Though I love you, that you know,
Say you’re sorry or else I’ll go.
If I do, bad for you,
You’ll go lonely all life through.

You’ll be sorry just too late,
When my love has turned to hate.
Then you miss my kiss each day,
And a little girl at play;
Say you’re sorry, cross your heart,
Then I’ll give you one more start,
If you are, don’t hesitate,
You’ll be sorry just too late.

Don’t forget, you’ll regret,
Soon my heart will be to let,
You may bide, by it’s side,
But it will be well occupied.
Say you’re sorry, then I’ll know,
That you don’t want me to go.
Don’t refuse, you may loose,
I have lots of beaus to choose.

Love From Salmagundi

Feb 18, 2022

Undated Love Letter written on a Salmagundi Club paper was sold on eBay on January 3, 2018 for undisclosed amount as mentioned by WorthPoint. I think the time of the letter ranges from early 1900 to 1940s. It is probably missing one page as the back side is marked with "2" and starts with "sufficient" being lower case and written mid sentence. The way Charles expresses his love to Betty is poetic, artistic and sweet. The letter reads: "Can anyone blame for loving you then as I do seeing it is all so true. Until I see or hear from you time will stand still. Were life to offer me nothing more would it not suffice to have been loved and love a masterpiece. "Truth is Beauty and Beauty is Truth" the poet said. I say Truth is Betty and Betty is Truth. That is all I know and is good for me. Adieux, Charles."

~ Missing paper.

"... sufficient for the whole human race to be absolved for this weakness as God had created us as we are full of desire and surrounded with temptation. The story of Adam and Eve brings me back to the realms of art i.e. pictures. Pictures make me think of Titian and you recall to me Titian's Venuses. If Art has done nothing more for me it has given me the power to see life with its own eyes. When I clasp you in my arms it is as if I possessed an Italian Venus of the Renaissance so full of life and richness that it had burst from its frame and encompassed me taking on warmth and breath. These are not words but what I really feel at the time and the memory lives after. When your head with its rich dark hair is thrown back in sweet, soft abandon exposing the poetry of your neck and shoulders with one elbow raised and the other arm outstretched and your lovely feet gently crossed then it is a perfect Titian. In the dim light I see you it would be a sensuous poem of Verlaine."