Funny Girl

Barbra Streisand is quite the actress, singer, and dancer. She has inspired many people through her work in film, theater, and song. On April 24, 1942 this legend was born. Barbra Streisand is probably best known for her portrayal as Fanny Brice in the 1968 film Funny Girl.

The movie opens up with Fanny Brice awaiting her husband’s arrival in New York City. The film then flashes back to when they first met. We are introduced to Fanny as a stage struck teenager. When she gets her first job she meets Nicky Arnstein who will go onto follow her career. As Fanny’s career flourishes Nicky becomes romantically involved with her. Even though there are times when their meetings are just fleeting moments, Fanny really does develop feelings for Nicky. As the young star of Ziegfield Follies, Fanny is reluctant to leave the place that she has called home. But, Nicky does convince her to leave so she can be with him. Later on in the film, Nicky wins a game of while traveling on the RMS Berengia. This leads to Fanny and Nicky marrying. As the film goes on we watch as Fanny and Nicky build a life together by buying a house and having a daughter. Fanny returns to Ziegfield Follies once things settle down. Sadly, Nicky has made a few bad investments leading to them becoming broke. Having to sell their house, they move into an apartment. Only, things get worse as Nicky has been embezzling money as part of his business ventures. Nicky is sent away to prison leading up to the opening scene with Fanny awaiting Nicky’s return. Nicky had been in prison from the beginning leading Fanny to question a few things about her life with him. The movie closes with Fanny asking him to separate from her. He agrees as the credits role.

Funny Girl is a 1968 musical with songs that almost everyone one knows. From “Don’t Rain on My Parade” to “Funny Girl” we are brought into this timeless classic over and over again. Barbra Streisand originate the role of Fanny Brice on Broadway in 1964. She then brought her to life on film in 1968 for audiences near and far to admire her. On April 24, 1942 Barbra Streisand was born, she is stil well beloved today as she was back then.

The Children’s Hour

Shirley Maclaine was born on April 24, 1934. She rose to become one of the most iconic and beloved actresses of all time. Through out her array of roles, one of her performances sticks out the most to me. In the 1961 drama The Children’s Hour she stars along side Audrey Hepburn as a teacher who’s life is destroyed by a single lie.

Karen and Martha are two well respected teachers who worked from the bottom up building their own school. Karen is engaged to the nephew of a wealthy and influential woman who’s granddaughter attends the school. Sadly, this young girl is a bully and when she is caught in order to get out of trouble, she tells her grandmother that Karen and Martha are lovers. Now remember, this is 1961 and a homosexual relationship between two women was heavily frowned upon. When Amelia, the influential woman, hears this she starts to tell the other parents of the girls who attend the school. One by one all of the girls are pulled from the academy leaving Karen and Martha in shock and wonder. Upon hearing of this rumor, they approach Amelia who would not let them in her own house. Before this happened, the rumor worsened when her granddaughter blackmailed another student at the school into lying as well. With their reputations ruined and their school closed, Martha and Karen try sue Amelia in court. Unfortunately, their only witness was too dedicated to the theater to make the court day. With all of this going on Karen ends up breaking her engagement with her fiancee who has stood by her because he starts to believe that the rumor is true. Shortly after, the young girl who was blackmailed tells the truth to Amelia. In a rage, she shouts at her granddaughter to go to her room from the floor that she falls on. When Amelia goes to make things right with Karen and Martha she is treated coldly and sent away. For Karen and Martha nothing will make up for the pain that she has caused them. Upon her leaving Martha confesses to Karen that she has “feelings” for Karen that she knows will never be returned. After Karen comforts her, she goes up to her room where she hangs herself. The movie closes with Martha’s funeral. Karen’s ex fiancee, Amelia, and several of the parents of the girls who were taken out of the school attend. The movie closes with Karen walking away alone from Martha’s funeral, not saying a word to anyone else there with her head held high.

Although, Shirley Maclaine in this movie is not as well remembered, to me it sticks out the most. In The Children’s Hour we are introduced to two young teachers who lose everything over a lie only for one of them to know the lie to be part truth. In this 1961 classic, Shirley Maclaine shines as a teacher with her reputation ruined. On April 24, 1934 Shirley Maclaine was born, meaning she turns another year older today.

The Omen (1976)

Richard Donner is a one of a kind director. On April 24 he turns a year older with many films that are inspiring. However, some of his films raise questions as to what you would do in a tough situation. In the 1976 horror film, The Omen, that question is asked multiple times towards the end.

Robert Thorn is a well liked American diplomat living in Rome with his wife Katherine. On the night that Katherine gives birth to their son Damien, Robert learns that his son has died. However, he learns that there is another baby in need of a home. Trying to save his wife from horrifying grief, Robert agrees to take in the orphaned baby. Eventually, Robert relocates his family to England where he has received the job as U.S. Ambassador. There strange things start to happen around Damien, such as a jackal staring at him. The Thorns put this off until, the day of Damien’s fifth birthday party when his nanny kills herself. Another nanny Mrs. Baylock is employed to look after Damien. Upon meeting Damien, she tells him that she is there “to protect him.” As the film goes on more strange things happen around Damien, such as the car being attacked by wild baboons at a drive thru zoo and him violently resisting going into a church. While Katherine puts off some of the fear about her son, Robert is informed by a couple different people about the origin of his son. At first a priest comes to tell Robert that his son is the son of the devil. But, Robert takes this as a threat because he believes he is trying to expose his sons true identity. Yet, the priest ends up being murdered leading Robert to question what is really going on. When Robert teams up with a reporter the truth becomes unveiled in a cemetery where he learns that his son was murdered. this was a plot in order to ensure that the son of the devil would be put in the Thorns care. However, the reporter is killed after he uncovers more evidence about Damien’s background. Around this time, Katherine has an “accident” when she is watering the plants in her house. Upon hearing of his wife’s hospitalization, Robert goes to her and returns home. Sadly, Mrs. Baylock shows up and murders Katherine by throwing her out the window. Once there he notices the sign of the beast upon his son’s skull. Knowing that his son is the anti-Christ and responsible for the pain of others, Robert decides to kill him. Mrs. Baylock shows up and stops Robert from killing him. Yet, Mrs. Baylock dies in the struggle with Robert carrying Damien out of the house. When he leaves he runs into the police who do not understand what is going on. When Robert raises his knife to kill Damien he is shot and killed by the police who are there. The movie closes with the Thorns funeral being attended by the President of the United States and their new son, Damien.

There is nothing quite as scary as the apocalypse that the anti-Christ is said to bring. In the 1976 classic, The Omen, we are introduced to a young child who’s destiny is to do just that. Richard Donner directs this horror classic, with the ultimate question, would you be able to do what Robert was trying to do knowing that it was the right thing. Remember, Damien may have been a child but his destiny is to bring upon the end of the world as we know it.

Armenian Genocide

On April 24 the Armenian Genocide is remembered. 1.5 million people died at the hands of the Ottoman Empire. Men, women, and children all lost their lives in the year 1915 due to horrendous murder practices. Today, we remember the horrors of the Armenian Genocide.