QUOTATIONS
Comments 71

Quotation: James Agate, 1921

“…like a painting by a Renaissance master (his profile reminds me always of Michelangelo’s study for the head of Leda), with such vibrant colour, such dark grey eyes and sooty lashes, such cream and olive skin, and the lithe body of an athlete. He is perfection, but he has eaten the fruit, is a David, with knowing eyes, and he bestows himself like a royal gift, expecting royal tribute in return…”

JAMES AGATE, THEATRE CRITIC, About Basil Rathbone, 1921 cited on “The Most Gentle Magical Person…”

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71 Comments

  1. Pinot says

    I am obsessed with old time movie stars and my faves are Errol Flynn, William Powell and Basil Rathbone! I love this blog.

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  2. Lesley Mauer says

    I’ve been browsing this blog fora while today. I was never a big Basil fan, but am a Holmes buff, and I have to say you have piqued my interest in the Basil series now. Never rated them because of the appalling Watson.

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  3. bonnie says

    what does Agate mean

    “he has eaten the fruit, is a David, with knowing eyes, and he bestows himself like a royal gift, expecting royal tribute in return…”

    I don’t understand what he means

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  4. Elaine says

    Very lovely man. I watched him in Love From a Stranger yesterday. So charming and loveable, and strangely vulnerable even when you know he’s a psycho-killer.

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    • hilary says

      yes I agree, there is that quality of vulnerability or lost child about him, especially in his early films, and yes it’s even there in Love From A Stranger

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      • Justine says

        When he leans against her bosom and says “never leave me darling” oh you just cry

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        • Clarissa says

          I love that part, you want her to rescue him. Is he at all sincere at that moment do you think?

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          • Yes,very sincere.I just want to say that some killers make loving,devoted husbands.I for one would have overlooked that fault and taken him in.

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    • gooseberry pie says

      I go weak at the knees for him in that film even when he’s going to kill her, when he’s kneeling down and she jumps up and he grabs her so he’s holding her almost on her butt and then spins her round. OMG he’s so strong and she’s so helpless and it’s just….BASIL PLEASE GRAB ME LIKE THAT *dies thinking about it*

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    • I didn’t like love from a stranger that much, the only good scenes were the ones that involved Basil 😀

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  5. elf maiden says

    Hubbahubbahubba….I want to devour his young flesh off his bones – and those gorgeous words! Sooty lashes, cream and olive skin. This man was gay right?!

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      • I had a dream I married Basil once. Only once we were exchanging vows he turned into just a picture of himself in my hands. My dreams must really hate me. ;_;

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    • I have absolutely no idea where it comes from or when it was taken – sorry. Maybe someone else out there can help?

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      • Jehane says

        It would be interesting to track down actually. He looks very young, but then he was looking like a gawky boy until he was nearly forty! (hey maybe he really did have a portrait in his attic) – 🙂

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    • Elaine says

      That is one part I would have loved to see him play. His potent mix of knowingness and sexual energy and yet vulnerability would have been perfect for that part when he was a young man.

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  6. I just read “shortchanged”..wow I feel so ripped off!How wonderfull it would have been to see Basil in a jousting sceen.I also feel the coment about Basil in the shower is tacky…Nudge..nudge..wink..wink..then there are those white pants and hightop boots worn by Esteban. ;}

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      • Frenchman’s Creek with his last scenes with Joan Fontaine,he’s in shirt,boots,hair hanging down and incredibly sexy as he fights with her to the death.And those eyes.

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    • roesbette says

      Do you kiss your mother with that mouth? Shame on your impure thoughts! Seriously, as attractive as Basil is, we could keep all of this on a higher plain.

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      • JedO1978@gmail.com says

        Rosy darlin’ – it’s just right there! What’s a boy (or gal) to do? But my lips are sealed herein angel 🙂

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        • roesbette says

          I guess I was just focused more on his gorgeous eyes. That’s what I look at first in a man. I’ve spent the past few months stalking this site trying to figure out what made this intelligent, gentle and mysterious guy tick, and I think it has to do with more than his nether regions. As a woman, I think I’d be pretty upset if all people focused on were my butt or my breasts and not what’s going on in my head or heart. It’s hard to figure out what crosses the line of admiring a physically beautiful person and objectifying.

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          • Margaret G says

            Timely reminder – he was a person, not an object of gratification. Lovely as he was.

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    • Harmonica Joe says

      Well someone was going commando – wouldn’t we all if we were so nicely endowed.

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    • Lilly White says

      OMG! I noticed that too and I was like – whoa is that the edge of his jacket? But he’s wearing a tailed tux and the jacket finishes at his waist, and you can like see the way the material is puckered that it’s…what you’re talking about! 😀

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  7. roesbette says

    Gorgeous….And having just seen The Adventurees of Robin Hood for about the thousandth time, I must say that in 3-strip technicolor, you can really see the beauty of his skin tone and eyes in his prime.

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    • Ulrika says

      I agree. I always loved his coloring, the description is so right – the contrast of the pale olive skin and grey/blue eyes is stunning. Imagine him in real life. Stunning he must have been.

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