Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra, A Marshmallow World
There are many personal favorite stars who I am convinced DO NOT get the appreciation they deserve. Who knows, maybe one of the reasons I started this Golden Age of Hollywood blog, in the first place, was to remedy the oversights!
Example of the day…. Dean Martin. Okay, this is one I could really go on and on about. Seriously.
Is he a household name? Absolutely.
Do people realize that he was a hilarious comedian? Absolutely.
Do they realize how extraordinary his voice was? Absolutely.
But… somehow (in my opinion) he still doesn’t quite get the appreciation he deserves.
Dean Martin had a larger than life personality and a sense of humor that was staggering. These traits seem to be associated with him more than any other – which is fine, mind you… we should all have such a wonderful personality that it’s remembered long after we’re gone.
If you’ve watched as many Dean Martin movies as I have and have listened to as many of his songs as I have, you know that this was an incredibly multi-talented star – the kind that do not come around often.
I think I actually had “Dean Martin fan” etched into my DNA. He was one of my mother’s favorite singers (he, Elvis, and The Oakridge Boys… what a soundtrack I had growing up!) and he was one of my dad’s absolute favorite actors. Like me, he’d go on and on about how effortless he made each role seem. Whether he was playing straight man to the wonderful Jerry Lewis or serving as a deputy to John Wayne’s character in Rio Bravo – he was never caught “acting,” he simply WAS the character you were enjoying at the moment.
My husband and I watch Rio Bravo several times a year and, yes, we do have the lines memorized at this point. We’ve seen it so often, we’ll often cue the characters…
- Okay, Dude, rub your face…
- Time to sing, boys…
- Walk it out, Chance…
- Fling those feathers, girl!
Sometimes we’ll even laugh in anticipation of what Stumpy’s fixing to say.
A couple of things consistently occur to me EACH time we watch this favorite movie.
ONE. Angie Dickinson was (and is) impossibly and flawlessly beautiful. Her facial features master the concept of teamwork better than most. She was the perfect “Feathers” and there is no actress who could have brought the character to life as beautifully.
TWO. John Wayne was larger than life. His onscreen persona, to this day, stands out as being one of the most imposing of all stars. Whatever “it” is, he had “it” from the tip of his hat to the toes of his boots. Watching John Wayne movies is one of the funnest things in the world and he is the reason.
THREE. Walter Brennan is a national treasure. His Stumpy is one of the most adorable and hilarious movie characters of all time – like “Feathers”, the role was cast perfectly.
FOUR. Dean Martin was more than a performer and more than a personality… he was an actor… make that ACTOR. If he had chosen to, he could have carved out a career as a dramatic actor and gone on to make a slew of memorable dramas. Fortunately for us, however, he chose a diverse career and has left us with dramatic roles, comedic roles, and songs that are as memorizing as a flip of Feather’s feathers.
One of my favorite Christmas songs is also one of my favorite Dean Martin songs and I listen to it nonstop this time of year. A Marshmallow World is a seriously fun song – it sets the tone for the Christmas season deliciously.
At the top of the post is A Marshmallow World performed by Dean Martin and a friend of his… I’m sure you’ve heard of him.. Frank Sinatra. I love this duet! At the bottom of the post is the version of A Marshmallow World by Dean Martin all by himself. What. A. Voice. I couldn’t decide which version to include in this post, so I did the “totally me” thing and went with both.
What can I say? I hate decisions.
Dino Paul Crocetti will always be one of my favorites and, if you get a chance, I hope you’ll watch each of his movies and listen to each of his songs. If he isn’t already, he’ll quickly become one of your favorites, too.