1. I hadn’t thought of it as a nerdy scene before, but it really is!

    ”Better look out, it’s gonna spit.” (Scarface). Hawks gets a kick out of referencing his other films, doesn’t he? He does that sort of thing in my blogathon choice as well. (Sergeant York in The Thing from Another World). My nerdy self is going to start looking for more.

  2. It’s the interplay between Sugarpuss and the professors that always draws me to this very funny film. I also like the Danny Kaye remake, though Virginia Mayo is an inadequate substitute for Barbara Stanwyck. I am curious about the pirate show at the Renaissance Faire…

    • True. That dancing instruction scene may be my favorite in the film:) I have never been able to bring myself to watch the remake. I really should give it a try. Wouldn’t anyone be an inadequate substitute though? Too tall an order:) The pirate show was basically a gun and canon demo, with interesting history lessons and supposed pirate language thrown in:) Thanks so much for hosting! I’m enjoying the entries so much.

  3. I adore Ball of Fire, and I’m glad to see someone else appreciates it highly. (Someone make this required viewing for any and every English class!) Just reading your descriptions made me reenact the scene in my head–so funny.

  4. I’d never heard of this movie before my then-roommate dragged me to a screening of it one Saturday night in Los Angeles. Afterwards, I was very happy I’d been dragged. Great review!

  5. What a great choice, This film is pure happiness. Coop is adorable, but Stanwyck is, indeed, a ball of fire. She is just amazing. Thanks for a great post about a film that always bring s smile to my face.

  6. Great post! Ball of Fire one of my favorite films, certainly in my top favorite comedies. I especially enjoyed your focus on encyclopedias and Wikis as a lead-in.

  7. So glad to read that it’s not just me that goes on wikipedia binges despite swearing I never will again following the discovery of yet another ‘fact’. I have to admit that female pirates isn’t a route I’ve yet pursued, but I can’t let you suffer alone…!
    I recently re-watched this, and I certainly think it’s one of my favourite Stanwyck roles. I’d forgotten how funny it is – the characters are so perfectly drawn and the chemistry is great!

  8. Great piece! This makes me want to watch this film again. Cooper and the professors are so entertaining, and the entire situation is so daffy. As someone else also mentioned, Stanwyck truly is a ball of fire in this. Perfect role for her.

  9. It is, indeed, a delightful movie – and one of my favorites as well. There are lots and lots of things to love about Ball of Fire – being th witty dialog the reason why I fell in love with it in the first place.
    Thanks for the kind comment!

  10. Read your profile in the recent CMBA post. When I heard you were a fan of “Ball of Fire” I just had to take a visit. It’s one of my favorite movies for many of the same reasons you like it (English major here), but I’m also a huge Stanwyck fan. She’s so underrated, in part, I think because she was a modest person; she just showed up for work. Also she was so natural and modern. None of her performances seem dated. I really would have liked her to have made another movie with Dana Andrews. They were great as gangster and moll, but her chemistry with Cooper is just hot. No other word describes the two of them together. 1941 was a great year for Stanwyck: “The Lady Eve,” “Ball of Fire,” and “Meet John Doe.” She worked with Preston Sturges, Howard Hawks, and Frank Capra (notice the serial commas?) in one year!? She could have retired and still been a movie legend. I could go on and on about Stanwyck, but I’ll stop here. Oh, wait, my new favorite Stanwyck movie is “The Miracle Woman,” a pre-code 1931 film directed by Capra. A great performance from a 24-year-old Stanwyck. Amazing! Okay, I’m done…for now.

    • So glad to find such a Stanwyck fan. She’s still my favorite actress. In fact, I watched Ball of Fire again last night. I loved The Miracle Woman, especially her rant near the start of the film. And how crazy fun is Baby Face? I agree that she and Andrews were a good pairing. They would have made such a fantastic noir together. I liked her with Van Heflin, who was also such an understated actor, but wish she’d been paired with better male comedians. Cary Grant-Barbara Stanwyck would be my dream pairing. I love that she had such a great reputation with all the crews of her films. It says so much about her.

Leave a Reply