When I was first approached about writing a Jane Russell biography, I must confess that I had only seen Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and The Outlaw, so it’s been a lot of fun diving into Jane’s filmography. Jane was certainly more of a personality than an actress, but she was usually well cast and always a heck of a lot of fun to watch onscreen. For those wanting get more exposure to Jane’s work (or revisit it), Turner Classic Movies is happy to oblige with three of Jane’s titles this month.
His Kind of Woman (1951)
Saturday, January 5, 9:00pm PST
Sunday January 6, 7:00am PST
Tomorrow, Eddie Muller is kicking off the 2019 Noir Alley series with His Kind of Woman, the first of two films Jane co-starred in with Robert Mitchum. This is a fun noir with amazing chemistry between its two stars and Vincent Price is an utter delight. The film ultimately gets the Howard Hughes touch, meaning it goes completely off the rails toward the end, but it’s well worth the time. Just in case you miss it for Noir Alley, it’s re-airing the following morning.
Monday, January 14, 12:45am PST
Macao was the second and (sadly) final pairing of Russell and Mitchum. For me, it’s not quite as memorable as His Kind Woman, but it’s still really enjoyable and Jane is stunning in this one. Her costumes are wonderful. This also might be my favorite entrance of Jane’s in a film. Check out her expression as she watches her date dance!
Born Losers (1967)
This is the first film of the Billy Jack series, focusing on the exploits of a part-Native American/Vietnam Vet/biker outlaw. Jane has a small role as the mother of a rape victim. I have not actually watched this film yet since, and admit to having been putting it off since the content sounds pretty intense. I could just watch Jane’s part, but feel like I need to watch the entire thing if I am going to ultimately write about it. Since I purchased the Billy Jack box set, I am going to be skipping this airing, but will post my thoughts once I take the plunge.