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Jun. 7th, 2008


The End

Dear Truus, Jan and friends,

I've decided to move on with European Film Star Postcards

From now on you can follow my posts on the stars and their postcards on Blogger

The new address is http://filmstarpostcards.blogspot.com/ 

My first post is about Romy Schneider and I'll transfer the earlier posts on this live journal. 

I do hope to meet you there.

Bye, Bob

NB So now Truus, Bob and Jan Too!  really will become a web orphan.

Apr. 8th, 2008


Vittorio Martinelli (1926-2008)

Last night, Italian film historian Vittorio Martinelli passed away. He was the man who made me discover the beauty of silent cinema and in particular Italian silent stars. Vittorio Martinelli was the living memory of Italian silent cinema, having interviewed many of the Italian people working in silent cinema. He also had a fabulous memory for faces and thus identified thousands of actors and film titles for various film archives in and outside of Italy. Together with Aldo Bernardini he edited their magnum opus, the multi-volumed Il cinema muto italiano, the ultimate reference book on Italian silent cinema. Together they received the Jean Mitry Award in 1992 for their work at the Giornate del Cinema Muto in Pordenone. He was a leading figure in the development of the Pordenone Giornate and the Bologna Cinema Ritrovato festival and a well-known collaborator there. Vittorio was also one of these rare persons who invested a huge amount of research into the foreign cinema exhibited in his own country. He edited several books on the cinema of other European nations in Italy during the silent era: Germany, France, the UK, etc. He also published books on Italian stars such as Pina Menichelli and Maria Jacobini and on foreign stars such Austrian actress Lucy Doraine. His Le dive del silenzio (2001) was a highly informative and witty encyclopedia of the stars of the silent era, both in Europa and the US. But most of all Vittorio was a very nice Neapolitan bonhomme, full of anecdotes, making film history alive and fun. He made you feel he was the intermediate between that far away world of silent cinema and your own modern world. And he always did it with irony. He was a true gourmand and a generous host. Last year he moved his whole, gigantic collection - including thousands of silent stars postcards - to the Cineteca del Comune of Bologna, but he was still in the preparation of a new book and a retrospective at the Bologna film festival, dedicated to gentleman-crook Emilio Ghione alias Za-la-Mort. Vittorio Martinelli won't be forgotten.


Apr. 5th, 2008


Farewell Truus!

And welcome back, Jan. Yeah, I know, we stopped our blog a month ago. And yeah, it was a bit sad, but Jan and I went on posting vintage postcards of European film stars on Flickr. Writing about them was so much fun and our postcards got so many views, that I had this idea: let's transform our Truus, Bob & Jan too! into an European film star blog with our postcards as illustrations. What about it, Jan? 

Here we will publish scans of our vintage postcards of the European cinema between 1895 and 1970. We like those stills and portraits of both stars and lesser known actors, in black & white, sepia or color, from Italy, France, Germany, Spain, Britain, Hungary, Russia, The Netherlands or any other European country. We love them all. We try to show the postcards like they have become after decades in the care of their fans. And we do hope you, readers anywhere, send us your comments.

Our dear Truus has her own project that she will post - sooner or later - on the web. Truus, the first post on this new European Filmstar blog is dedicated to you. It's about  another Dutch Truus we love:

Truus van Aalten
Dutch Postcard by Jospe, nr. 462. Photo by Godfried de Groot, Amsterdam.

Dutch film star Truus van Aalten (1910-1999) made 29 films in the 1920’s and 1930’s and only one of them in the Netherlands. She was sixteen when she won a competition in a film magazine and found herself acting in a movie in the film metropolis Berlin. The film was called Die sieben Töchter der Frau Gyurkovics (1927, Ragnar Hyltén-Cavallius) and it was a small part, but the Ufa soon realized that she was a gifted comedienne. Although she had no acting education at all she was contracted by the Ufa for three years. Thereafter many silent films for other companies too followed. Because of her informal acting and her humour, Truus van Aalten succeeded to entertain the audience. Her nickname in Germany became ‘die kleine holländische Käse’ (the little Dutch cheese).
Truus van Aalten
This is a German postcard by Ross Verlag, nr. 5773/1, from 1930 or 1931.  The photo was taken by Photo-Atelier May in Frankfurt a.M.

Truus van Aalten became popular all over Europe. The transition to the sound film turned out well for her despite her Dutch origin and she performed in such early sound movies as Liebling der Götter (1930, Hanns Schwarz), Pension Schöller (1930, Georg Jacoby) and Kasernenzauber (1931, Carl Boese). When the Nazis came to power they forced her to stop working, because she refused to become a party member. In 1934 she returned to Amsterdam where she starred in her only Dutch movie, the army comedy Het meisje met den blauwen hoed (1934, Rudolf Meinert). When the Nazis tried to use her in propaganda movies, she refused. In 1939 she got once more a leading role in Ein ganzer Kerl (1939, Fritz Peter Buch), it would be her last film. After the war she tried to gain a foothold in the British film business, but the there unknown actress finally failed because of her lack of knowledge of English. In the 1950's she became a businesswoman with her self-founded shop for souvenirs in Voorhut and she married in 1964. Her last years were marred by mental illness, and she died in the Dutch town of Warmond in 1999.

Sources: Cyranos.ch, IMDb and Personenencyclopedie.info. This website is completely dedicated to her.

Apr. 3rd, 2008


Greatest Hits

This photo was uploaded 24 November last year. Two months ago it reached a 1000 hits. Today, 3 April 2008, it was watched over 1500 times. Cause for a small review of our most popular pictures on Flickr.

1. The dresses from Marie Antoinette are alltime high in popularity and daily several viewers are watching it. Maggie's costume site contributes to that for sure, but maybe today the Marie Antoinette exhibition in Paris too?!
2. Another picture from the same costume exhibition in Frascati, showing the costume Monica Bellucci wore in Brothers Grimm.
3. Another one from the Frascati exhibition, now a costume worn by Sophia Loren.
4. Sophia Loren is extremely popular on our Flickr site, because the best viewed card of our group European Film Star Postcard is this card of 'la Loren, from La donna del fiume, filmed on the river Po.
5. The canal parade photo that used to be our best viewed photo for months had to make place for all the pictures here above.

Brothers GrimmLoren costume TosiCanal Parade  

Sophia Loren

Over the last weeks, the result was that the postcards from the 1950s, in particular the colored ones, were extremely popular: Christine Kaufmann, Brigitte Bardot, and Diana Dors have now more than 200 hits, followed by cards with Anna Karina, Bardot again, Silvana Mangano and Simone Signoret. The ladies are more 'en vogue than the men, except for Johannes Heesters, but that was due to his live performance in the Netherlands earlier this year. The postwar stars were also more popular than the ones from the silent era, except for one card with Asta Nielsen as Hamlet.

Lya Mara

Brigitte HelmLina CavalieriThe Greatest Hits records are a  bit different when we consider which pictures are most viewed yesterday. Newly posted cards of silent actresses draw several hits. Nr. 1 remains Dresses from Marie Antoinette and nr. 2 is the Loren color photo card, but together with a highly recent card with silent star Lya Mara. Nrs. 3 are ex aequo two other silent cinema actresses: Lina Cavalieri (rather a star of the opera but she also did films) and Brigitte Helm (the vamp from Metropolis), plus beefcake hunk Josh Holloway. Nr. 4 is silent star Pola Negri and nr.s 5 are ex aequo silent star Diana Karenne, a statue of Lucifer in a church in Liege and the picture of Diana Dors mentioned above. 
Overall, the silent majority was doing very well yesterday.  

Diana Karenne

And our recently placed card of Italo-Russian diva Diana Karenne received 95 hits within a week!

On the whole our Flickr page is viewed almost 3000 times a week, between 200 and over 600 times a day, thanks to our Postcard Group for sure. 

It's incredible, it's fascinating, and it's highly addictive!


Mar. 1st, 2008


Last Greetings from Fuengirola

Hi Jan and Brechtje too,

Thanks for your posts. Maybe we should start a new blog to correspond between Amsterdam and Uruzgan? But honestly, there is less need for us to write when Jan and I are together in Amsterdam. Besides that, Truus stopped writing for this blog a while ago and that made it sure less fun to continue Truus, Bob & Jan too! Last year she and I got the idea for a brother & sister blog when we were walking along the beach of Fuengirola. During the year the blog changed. So I thought it would be a good idea to end it in Fuengirola too. But ok, let´s make her a sleeping beauty.

Mostras Senora de Fatima Fatima en Los Bolichos
Tonight Truus, S and I will return to the Netherlands, so this is my last report from Fuengirola. We enjoyed our short vacation. This morning dad and I went to the flea market. We met many Dutch seniors he knew - of course - so there was a lot of chatter. The weather in the Netherlands seems to be really bad: storm and rain. The people here love to talk about news like that. Meanwhile on the market I bought some cd´s by Boudewijn de Groot and two postcards for our filmcard set. I´ll post the cards tomorrow on our Flickr page. And many thanks for updating our European Filmstar Postcards Group, Jan! It has already 13 members.

Last Night I took the whole family to an Argentinean restaurant very near to Jabega. Dad and mum had never been there before, but the food (pasta´s and pizza´s, a salad, and cheesecake as a dessert) was fine. Next to eating, taking pictures and internetting I have found a new hobby here: Sudoku. Mum was brought to it by B, her boy next door in Eindhoven. And now the whole family is playing it. I´ve started easy and have climbed now to the second grade of difficulty.



PS. I´ll miss the internet shop here. Good seats and computers, and they´ve great music: Amy, Mika and now a new version of It´s Raining Men ( I prefer the version of the Weather Girls though). 

Feb. 29th, 2008


Sleeping Beauty

Let's not kill her immediately, our sweet blog, but let her sleep like the Sleeping Beauty. Some day a prince will come to kiss and wake her up again...

Tonight I saw a fairly good film, L'aria salata (Salt Air) by Alessandro Angelini. One of the actors was there for a Q&A. Typically the Dutch ask in particular about the costs of such a low-budget, auteurish film, though everybody complimented the actor who played an old convict, trialed for murder, who meets his son after 20 years. The son works in a Roman prison and cannot cope with the fact the father didn't bother about his wife & kids anymore. The truth is more ambiguous, however. 

Raul Bova
Tomorrow, Raul Bova, the ultimate Italian hunk - saw him in Ozpetek's La Finestra di Fronte, playing very well -  won't come to the film Io, l'altro but instead the much less known director of the film, Mohsen Melliti will replace him. O.k. I'l go anyway. Just to comfort me, attached is a nice picture of Bova. According to the Dutch critics, I should see this film, as well as another one, Riparo, a lesbian story for which a former student from the Centro Sperimentale I know co-wrote the script. One of the actresses in the film is Maria de Medeiros.

In the daytime tomorrow, it will be hard work on my lectures: still need to prepare a lot. Oh well, the weather is not very attractive, so that helps.

See you soon, Bob, Truus & S!


More and more greetings from Fuengirola

Hi Jan,

Orphans on the BeachRemember your resolutions for 2008? Today I finished De idioot (The Idiot) by Fyodor Dostoevsky and to read a book of the Russian master was one of my resolutions for this year. Another one was to find a new job - and I did too. This monday I will start working in Utrecht. So maybe that´s a good moment to stop with this blog. The Wooden Horse

Truus was lately much too busy for blogging; you were working very hard since you returned from Rome, and I want to concentrate on my new job now. 1 March is a good end date for Truus, Bob and Jan too!, don´t you agree?

Tiger, 2So our little blog will become an orphan, but first here are some of the pictures I took today in Fuengirola. We went to the local zoo today. And it´s a small zoo, but a very nice one. We try to go there each year. I was amazed when the tiger came so near. There was only a glass plate between the two of us...



Feb. 28th, 2008


Even More Greetings from Fuengirola

Hi Jan,

Thanks for your posts. Poor you, you had so many troubles with car alarms, contact lenses and brown bugs. But it was good to read that you kept busy and that you met Maria Schneider. I would have liked to see her.

The Green Door Víva La Fería Le Feria Baraka 

Truus and I went to Malaga yesterday on our yearly shopping and art spree. We saw two great exhibitions, one on fifty years of photography in the Picasso Museum and another in the Museum of Modern Art. We ate vegetarian in our favorite restaurant in Malaga and drank beer and a very interesting yellow liquor on the terrace of the Museum of Modern Art. Oh yeah and we bought a green sweater for S and Guess sunglasses for me. 

Centro de Arte Contemporáneo de Málaga Puente Round tower 

A big hug from


PS. Sophia did a ´demarage´ on Johannes.

Jan is busy

Hi Bob, 
Professione reporter, Amerikaans affiche

You called from a cellphone while I was away. Yes, this guy isn't sticking to the geraniums. Tonight was my night at he Filmmuseum, with Professione reporter/The Passenger, with a very brief introduction by Maria Schneider (wo got old and was covered with pancake) and by Sandra den Hamer. Beautiful restoration but I saw it already, i think in Bologna. Afterwards, food & drinks provided by Hilton at the Vondelkerk. I'll send you a picture via the mail; it is not flattering, I warn you.  Here is a picture of la Schneider from the net:
Maria Schneider now
Tomorrow afternoon I have a meeting of my magazine and afterwards drinks with my friend J at Walem, but I expect to be back at 8, if you want to call then. Friday it is swimming & lunch with G as usual, and in the nighttime a modern Italian film at the Filmmuseum. Saturday night Raul Bova, the Italian George Clooney is coming over for a film at the Filmmuseum, so I already booked a seat. Sunday maybe I have a spaghettata with some of the directors of New Cinema Events: the director of the Italian Institute made me an invitation, when I said hello to him tonight. 

LOL, also to Truus & the others,


Feb. 26th, 2008


Amsterdam ABC: alarms, bugs, contact lenses

Hi Bobby, 

well, here is then a short and updated version of my previous mail to you. First of all thank you for the lovely farewell card. auto alarm

Last night I only slept 5 hours: went to bed much too late and then just after 7 a car alarm started, producing a hell of a sound, a non-stop honking. Nobody cared to switch it off and no neighbour helped, so I called the police who asked me for the licence plate number. I was in my underwear then, while outside it was raining... O.k. 3 minutes later they knew the number but it still took them some 20 minutes to get into action. Good to know when I have burglars next time...

Today it was lunch with G and A at the university: nice talks. End of April she is going to Berlin again for a conference: lucky girl, good time to be in Berlin, I guess. Tonight I was at our friend G and I thought I flushed a contact lens through his sink. Dinner at the Indonesian was an experience afterwards, me half dizzy looking with one lens. The food was good though. I just got a call that G found my lens back; thank God, they cost 180 euro's nowadays.

Nice pictures of the town & the beach, especially the night scenes! I also watched them on Flickr. Here Saturday it was sunny in the afternoon in Brabant when visiting my relatives, but Sunday grey in spite of the weather report, Monday sunny after lunch again. Yesterday a very early class at 9, after I had worked till midnight on grading the assignments and preparing my lecture. Returning, E didn't show up because she thinks the paint she has is the wrong one. I got Spring feelings and bought some helleborus or spring rose plants for the big pot on the balcony. Unintended tulips are coming up everywhere in my hanging pots.

I also did a big cleaning in the food cupboard which was filled with little brown bugs, so-called bread bugs; we had them before. They eat through every package, love flower but also herbs, so everything open I had to throw, even an almost new pack of cacao and opened herb bottles. I bought new herbs in closable glass bottles and also a few plastic containers for flower etc. I'll ask E tomorrow to do a good cleaning around the fridge. I'v been a good housewife, then?

The weekend in the South was nice in spite of twice the busses between Utrecht & Den Bosch. Birthday dinner of my niece, getting 20; bought her Intolerable Cruelty. Sunday morning coffee with my mum, uncle & aunt. My aunt may be 89 and physically weak, but when she starts talking about the past, she still has a lot of fire in her. My mum alas is getting very forgetful and she is easily worn out. I do hope our Dutch doctors & hospitals will help her out soon, because up till now they only launched contradictory phrases.

Big kisses, love to you all and a hug for S!


PS the score for the stars: Diana Dors 83, Asta Nielsen 90, Brigitte Bardot 96, Christine Kaufmann 97 (bypassing BB!), Sophia Loren 161 (getting close to:), Johannes Heesters 167. Hertha Thiele already 28, Dolly Haas already 42... And of course new cards in the mail for you. I also did a few invitations on Flickr.

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