Thursday, May 6, 2010
My friend Monty of All Good Things is the next fabulous blogger to guest post. Monty is one of my favorite blogger friends. He always has such nice, supportive things to say and his blogs are a real treat! It's rare to have a man as interested in the vintage world as us girls, so it's a refreshing change to have his input. If you haven't visited one of his many blogs, you must rush over and check him out. Tell him I sent you and enjoy his post!
"As promised here is my contribution to your terrific blog this week. Now mind you, I have never been to this place, but would love to go there someday. It's Monument Valley in Utah. And while it is now quite the tourist attraction, I immediately fell in love with it's beauty a long time ago thanks to films of John Ford. I remembered the first time I ever saw Monument Valley on the screen was in Ford's 1956 epic western The Searchers and it took my breath away. I can only imagine how it would be in real life. But I'm sure it has to be awesome. I'm sure the images you see on film and TV can't do it justice, but dang if Ford didn't try. If you have ever seen The Searchers, you probably know what I'm talking about. I would say it's one of the most gorgeous looking films ever made. It captures Monument Valley in all it's glory. You could almost say that the it is a character itself in The Searchers as it stands out front and center and not just as a backdrop. As a fan of westerns, maybe I am biased on Monument Valley. And if you're not an outdoor person, then maybe this is not your cup of tea. But it looks so beautiful and breath-taking that I don't see how anyone would not want to visit at least once.
Ford would film a total of 10 westerns on this location with the most famous being The Searchers. The first time he filmed here was for 1939's Stagecoach. And his 1948 western Fort Apache won best cinematography for it's gorgeous depiction. The Searchers was shut out during awards it's year of release. Ford is not the only person to use this location for films either, but he is the one who I think used it the best. Everything from 2001 to Easy Rider has used Monument Valley for a scene or two. The most recent big film to use Valley was Mission Impossible 2 with Tom Cruise dangling from one of it's high peaks. Great looking stuff. But as a vintage place, Monument Valley has history on it's side and even though today it is viewed as commercial tourist attraction with the hot air balloon rides and wedding themes, it stands out a true wonder of scenic beauty. Hopefully one day I will venture out west to see this place in person. Maybe me and my wife can take a vacation one year and this will be our destination.
I've been to modern places thanks to the sci-fi conventions I frequent but I would not qualify them as vintage places. And I could have chose The Hollywood Walk of Fame or Grauman's Chinese Theater, which I have never been to either. But there is something about Monument Valley that appeals to me the most. Maybe it's just because it's a simple thing of mountains and the desert. Nothing fancy or extravagant. But just a reminder of how things used to be - simple and beautiful. Nothing hectic or glitzy or such, just something old fashioned and nice. Well, anyway that is my post for my good friend Kori. Hope everyone enjoyed it. It was fun writing about it."