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Thread: Vera Ralston?

  1. #1
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    I don't know if it was this forum or another one, but I still don't have an answer to a question that's puzzled me for years.



    I recall seeing a film (for some reason, the year 1947 sticks in my mind) in which a young man falls in love with a beautiful woman whom he believes is his age. This much I remember, but my mind fast-forwards to the end, when the young suitor finds his lover, after she mysteriously disappears--and she is an old woman--not only that, but married to an old man.



    Her devoted husband patiently explains to the young man that his wife suffered a traumatic experience and her cells 'froze,' causing her to stay young, without aging.



    I have always thought this was Vera Ralston, and the young man her perennial co-star, John Carroll, but after checking the synopses of every one of her movies on IMDb, cannot locate this film.



    Is anyone old enough to recall the actress (if not Vera Ralston) and the name of the film? I thought I'd kind of like to 'borrow' the premises of her never aging for a short story I am considering writing.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Country: United States will.15's Avatar
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    Beats me, but you might want to put this in Can You Name This Film. I know of a few movies with a similiar premise, but not with that ending.You would think it would be a fairly well known film with that climax. Are you certain this wasn't from a television anthology?

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    name='will.15']Beats me, but you might want to put this in Can You Name This Film. I know of a few movies with a similiar premise, but not with that ending.You would think it would be a fairly well known film with that climax. Are you certain this wasn't from a television anthology?


    Thanks. Actually, I'm old enough to have seen this unnamed flick in 1947. Perhaps it was shown in the 1950s on late-night television. If I keep asking, sooner or later, someone will come up with an answer.



    Speaking of Vera Ralston, she's almost uniformly criticized for her (lack of) acting ability--John Wayne being among her detractors--but I always liked her, particularly when she teamed up with John Carroll.

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    Senior Member Country: United States will.15's Avatar
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    She was a good actress. John Wayne resented the fact her husband owned Republic Pictures where he was under contract and put her in the Fighting Kentuckian.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Country: UK Ray's Avatar
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    The film was Angel on the Amazon (1948), which is said to be Vera's worst film. She played a woman whose ageing processes are in a state of arrest due to her once having been frightened by a panther. She is approaching old age, but younger George Brent does not know this and ardently woos her. Vera's husband, Brian Ahearn, knows the shocking truth and is rightfully dazed by it, while Constance Bennett, as a psychiatrist, figures that the youthful "angel" is just plain nuts. Of this embarrassing - even by Republic's standards - production, Vera said, "The whole thing was unreal".

  6. #6
    Senior Member Country: United States will.15's Avatar
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    Angel on the Amazon (1948)



    Good work, Ray! Some people liked the movie. None of the six user reviews were negative. I want to see this.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Country: UK Ray's Avatar
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    name='will.15']Angel on the Amazon (1948)



    Good work, Ray! Some people liked the movie. None of the six user reviews were negative. I want to see this.




    The film of Vera's that sticks in my memory is, I Jane Doe. which was the film she made before Angel on the Amazon. I haven't seen it since 1948, but I know it made a big impression on me as a kid, as did Ruth Hussey who I believe played Vera's defending council in a murder trial. From what I have read about Vera, she seemed a very nice lady who was very popular with co-workers. Well, apart from John Wayne anyway.

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    name='Ray']The film was Angel on the Amazon (1948), which is said to be Vera's worst film. She played a woman whose ageing processes are in a state of arrest due to her once having been frightened by a panther. She is approaching old age, but younger George Brent does not know this and ardently woos her. Vera's husband, Brian Ahearn, knows the shocking truth and is rightfully dazed by it, while Constance Bennett, as a psychiatrist, figures that the youthful "angel" is just plain nuts. Of this embarrassing - even by Republic's standards - production, Vera said, "The whole thing was unreal".


    Ray, I'll check this out and get back with you. I don't recall its being on IMDb, but I might have only breezed through it because, although the year was right (I would seen it then, age nine), the title didn't fit. Somehow, I thought the film was set in a cold climate--maybe Minnesota or the like. I usually can get an answer to my 'pressing' questions by casting a net across the Internet.



    If this is the film, the premise sounds a bit weak--come on now--frightened by a panther!! I was thinking of having my proposed protagonist's cells 'frozen' by the trauma of almost going down with the Titanic. Young Jack Thayer, who did survive the sinking, and went on to be president of a university, along the lines of Princeton, for instance. Jack, when he learned his son was killed in World War II, killed himself. I always thought his life story would be interesting.



    Getting back to Vera Ralston, it was said that she had 'wider shoulders than John Wayne.' I think this witticism came from Vera Miles, who still remains peeved that she couldn't use her real name--Vera Ralston--because another, 'no-talent' actor got there ahead of her.



    Thanks again.



    Gary

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    Senior Member Country: United States will.15's Avatar
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    name='Gary D.']



    If this is the film, the premise sounds a bit weak--come on now--frightened by a panther!! I was thinking of having my proposed protagonist's cells 'frozen' by the trauma of almost going down with the Titanic. Young Jack Thayer, who did survive the sinking, and went on to be president of a university, along the lines of Princeton, for instance. Jack, when he learned his son was killed in World War II, killed himself. I always thought his life story would be interesting.





    Gary


    This what happened to Jack after the Titanic sunk.

    [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vD4OnHCRd_4"]YouTube- Titanic: The Sequel[/ame]

  10. #10
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    This is the film I remember seeing--although not the Amazon bit. I must have gone out for popcorn and returned late. I don't recall George Brent, or Brian Ahearn, either. Ralston's 'ageless' beauty at fifty-one, now that I'm well past that, doesn't seem all that fantastic anymore. Look at Joan Collins, for instance.



    In perusing the comments, however, I see that most echo my own experience regarding this film. I am not sure how much labor or expense I'd put out to secure a copy, now that I know what it is.



    In retrospect, perhaps Vera Ralston wasn't all that great an actress--certainly no Meryl Streep. Then, again, neither was Maria Montez, and one of her Technicolor films was always a big event when it came to Globe or Miami, Arizona. A friend sent me Sudan, on the same tape as the 1939 (?) classic Four Feathers. The two films, even as much as I cared for Maria, were not appropriately joined.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Country: United States will.15's Avatar
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    She was a better actress than Maria Montez (but not as attractive).

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    Senior Member Country: United States torinfan's Avatar
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    name='will.15']Angel on the Amazon (1948)



    Good work, Ray! Some people liked the movie. None of the six user reviews were negative. I want to see this.


    I'd like to see it too, it is mentioned in Lamparski's "Whatever Became Of...?" eighth series.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Country: UK Ray's Avatar
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    name='Gary D.']Ray, I'll check this out and get back with you. I don't recall its being on IMDb, but I might have only breezed through it because, although the year was right (I would seen it then, age nine), the title didn't fit. Somehow, I thought the film was set in a cold climate--maybe Minnesota or the like. I usually can get an answer to my 'pressing' questions by casting a net across the Internet.




    I had read about it in a book called, "The Glamour Girls" which included Vera among other names of the '40's. I checked it on IMDb, and it is certainly the only film of Vera's that resembles your description. The theme of the story is similar to Lost Horizon.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Country: United States will.15's Avatar
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    Ray, I think you missed post #10. He returned and verified that was his movie. I looked up Vera Ralston in Wikipedia. She insulted Hitler to his face at the Olympics. That makes her okay in my book.

  15. #15
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    name='will.15']Ray, I think you missed post #10. He returned and verified that was his movie. I looked up Vera Ralston in Wikipedia. She insulted Hitler to his face at the Olympics. That makes her okay in my book.


    I recall the infamous picture of Vera's fellow skater Sonja Henie gushing over Hitler--or was he gushing over her?--but missed that about Ralston, if that was her name at the 1936 Olympics. I'll have to check this out as well.



    Now, Vera Ralston might have been a better actress than Henie, although perhaps not as good a skater, although Sonja Henie's films were very popular during the late 1930s and 1940s. The last film I recall of Henie was the Countess of Monte Cristo, with Olga San Juan, in 1948.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Country: United States torinfan's Avatar
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    As the story goes, at the Berlin Olympics in 1936 Vera finished second to Sonja Nenie in ice skating when the Fuhrer asked her if she would like to skate for the swastika. Her reply was: "I'd rather skate on it! [the swastika]" Soon after that she came to NYC and the rest is history.

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