And not just because of her looks (which, on the surface, were okay but nothing to write home about, strictly speaking). No, Russell projected an intelligence and a style and a sense of humor which were every bit as attractive, if not more so, than any of her physical attributes. (In this, she was much like Jean Arthur, another of ol’ Robbo’s favorites.)
Sigh. They just don’t make ’em like that in Hollywood these days. Yo fazizzle?
Speaking of which, who knew that Bill Murray, one of my very favorite modern actors, is not only Catholic, but is also a proponent of the Traditional Latin Mass and dignified musick? Money quote:
One new saint he does approve of is Pope John XXIII (who died in 1963). “I’ll buy that one, he’s my guy; an extraordinary joyous Florentine who changed the order. I’m not sure all those changes were right. I tend to disagree with what they call the new mass. I think we lost something by losing the Latin. Now if you go to a Catholic mass even just in Harlem it can be in Spanish, it can be in Ethiopian, it can be in any number of languages. The shape of it, the pictures, are the same but the words aren’t the same.”
Isn’t it good for people to understand it? “I guess,” he says, shaking his head. “But there’s a vibration to those words. If you’ve been in the business long enough you know what they mean anyway. And I really miss the music – the power of it, y’know? Yikes! Sacred music has an affect on your brain.” Instead, he says, we get “folk songs … top 40 stuff … oh, brother….”
Despite the fact that he made his name doing screwball comedy, I have long thought that Murray has incredible depths of subtlety and I simply love most of his more recent, nuanced stuff. To find out that he shares ol’ Robbo’s views re the Mass is, well, not so much icing on the cake as breaking out in a new dimension of bonding.
(And lest you thing that I’m indulging in sloppy, blanket praise, I will confess again here that I have never made it all the way through “Groundhog Day” without dozing off, although I think that’s more me than the movie itself. Also, I think “Caddyshack” is immensely overrated. )