Today marks the one-hundred anniversary of the birth of one of the greatest movie stars of all times, James (aka Jimmy) Stewart.
I offered some thoughts on one of my favorite Stewart flicks, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance here and expect to update this post throughout the day. And of course, should I have time this evening to watch a DVD, it’ll be something starring that great man from Indiana, Pennyslvania.
UPDATE:Â I had thought I would have more to say about Jimmy Stewart today, but, well, would rather just watch his movies and delight in how well he plays “Everyman.”Â Tonight, I saw him playing Tony Kirby, the scion of a wealthy banking family in Frank Capra‘s You Can’t Take it With You, with Lionel Barrymore playing almost exactly the opposite role he plays in It’s a Wonderful Life.
The movie holds up so well, nearly seventy years after its initial release.Â Perhaps it’s just due to Stewart’s screen presence or Capra’s vision or the delightful supporting cast.
I had hoped to say something profound about Jimmy Stewart, given how much I enjoy his films, but just can’t seem to manage it today.Â Sometimes, the ideas comes to us when we least expect them.Â Oftentimes, when we try to say something on the anniversary of an important event about that event or the person born on that day, the words don’t flow.Â But, then another day, what we want to say emerges when something turns our thoughts in a certain directions.
I regret that I cannot offer today a tribute in words to Jimmy Stewart.Â But, thanks to DVD — and now a variety of other media — we can watch his movies in our own homes at our leisure.Â And those films, Stewart’s celluloid legacy, represent the greatest tribute to his amazing talent.Â A true record of his achievement.