“I wish to live to 150 years old, but the day I die, I wish it to be with a cigarette in one hand and a glass of whiskey in the other.”
Ava Gardner


Hi Gelo!

Retroback 2014 is here! This year the International Classic Film Festival of Granada will be a tribute to one of the most beautiful movie stars ever: Ava Gardner.

I love to watch Ava’s films. She was lovely, filling the screen with her magnetism. To me, Ava will always be the Venus of the film industry, as she played this part in her film Venus era Mujer (One Touch of Venus, William A. Seiter 1948) where you can admire her beauty in all its splendour. It’s an amusing film about an ancient statue called The Venus of Anatolia that comes to life when a man fascinated with its beauty kisses the statue unaware of the problems it will carry him, starting with how to explain that the valuable statue has suddenly disappear. As a curiosity, only a few people including me know that the beautiful song Speak Low, which became a famous standard of jazz, was originally composed to be included in the soundtrack of this musical.

From February 22nd to March 2nd we will be able to see on big screen not only the most emblematic movies of Ava’s filmography but also some other wonderful classic films of all genres. Among my favourites, I would strongly recommend Eva al Desnudo (All About Eve, Joseph L. Mankiewicz 1950) starring my favourite actress, Bette Davis, which is a drama about the tricks in the theatre’s world. The hilarious comedy La Fiera de mi Niña (Bringing up Baby, Howard Hawks 1938) is also worth seeing. If you like horror films you can’t miss Psicosis (Psycho, Alfred Hitchcock 1960) or ¿Que Fue de Baby Jane? (What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?, Robert Aldrich 1962), both movies are so creepy!. Finally, in the programme of Retroback 2014 you can find some of the best film noir movies, including El Cartero Siempre Llama Dos Veces (The Postman Always Rings Twice, Tay Garnett 1946) with the beautiful Lana Turner playing the part of a femme fatale, La Noche del Cazador (The Night of the Hunter, Charles Laughton 1955) the only film directed by Charles Laughton, who was a great actor and proved to be a very good director too just with one film, and Los Sobornados (The Big Heat, Fritz Lang 1953) a masterpiece in its genre.

Here you have some videos and trailers as a warming up. I hope you enjoy Retroback 2014!!!

P. S. I could be writing or talking about movies for hours! I hope it’s not too long 🙂



Tomorrow Thursday February 27th we are going to enjoy culture outside the classroom.

These days Granada is holding the Retroback festival.

We are going to meet at 17.55 at Fuente de las Batallas.

First we will be visiting the Ava Gardner’s exhibition and we will have a guided tour in English provided by the Director of the Ava Gardner’s Museum in North Carolina. (See Travel Wednesday section). We must thank our dear student and great actress Carmen Huete for making it possible to have this wonderful and unique opportunity.

Then we will head to the Palacio de Congresos to see the classic movie The Postman always rings twice. If you cannot make it to the exhibition we will meet at 19.45 outside the Palacio de Congresos.


Tomorrow Thursday February 27th, as part of our evening out at the movies, we will visit the Ava Gardner exhibition brought to Granada from North Carolina, and we will have a guided tour in English provided by the Director of the museum himself!!! We need to thank our dear classmate and wonderful actress Carmen Huete for making this possible.

Ava Gardner’s Museum Webpage 

The Ava Gardner Museum is located at 325 East Market Street in historic downtown Smithfield, North Carolina and holds an extensive collection of artifacts from Ava Gardner’s career and private life.
The original collection was started in 1941 by a fan, Tom Banks, who, at age 12, met Ava on the campus of Atlantic Christian College (now Barton College) where she was studying to become a secretary. When she did not return to school the next year, he saw a photograph of Gardner in a newspaper and learned that she had been signed to a movie contract with MGM.
The Banks devoted most of their lives to collecting memorabilia from every source imagined. In the early 1980s Dr. Banks purchased the Brogden Teacherage, the house where Ava lived from age 2 to 13, and operated his own Ava Gardner Museum during the summers for nine years. Dr. Banks suffered a stroke at the museum in August 1989 and died a few days later. Ava died 5 months later on January 25, 1990. In the summer of 1990, Mrs. Banks donated the collection to the Town of Smithfield, being assured that a permanent museum would be maintained in Johnston County, Ava’s birthplace and final resting place.
The Ava Gardner Museum was incorporated in 1996 as a 501(c)3 organization to manage and care for the Museum’s collection of personal items and movie memorabilia gifted to the Town of Smithfield by Tom and Lorraine Banks. Since that time the Ava Gardner Museum Foundation has continued to acquire artifacts related to Ava’s life and is committed to preserving these items and displaying them in an educational manner.
In August 1999, the Museum’s board made an investment in downtown Smithfield by purchasing and renovating a 6,400-square-foot (590 m2) building that became the permanent home for the Museum’s vast collection. In October 2000, the new Ava Gardner Museum opened its doors and has continued to draw national and even worldwide attention with approximately 12,000 visitors each year.