The Bedford Falls Sentinel

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Enter the Martini castle ... The Enesco Martini Home of Mr. and Mrs Martini

    Next visiting one of the finest buildings in all of Bedford Falls and of course in all the Enesco village. It's also central to one of the best scenes of the film. Of course we are talking about the owners of Martini's, the warm and genuine Giuseppe and Maria Martini. Their house represents so much more than just a home, and it's scene in the movie could be considered a core of the movie's theme or central plot. We see the contrasts between Potter's machine and the Building and Loan's organic community system. On one side, the bankers or middle man seem to make all the profits, while on the other a family becomes the owners of their own home with only their future and hearts to profit. We see George and Mary's commitment to their work, while by the end of the scene we also see their (George's at least) slight frustration at the realization of what sacrifices he's made to become the figure of that very work they do. Goerge and Mary are at the opening of the new home, they drive the family (and their goat) to the new home, and create a friendship that becomes very special. In this scene Martini simply calls George Mr. Bailey but by the end of the film we know that George has become Giuseppe's best friend.
    Mr. Martini is played by the wonderful William Edmunds, and his wife Maria by the lovely Argentina Brunetti. Edmunds was a minor actor in many films including a small role in the famous Casablanca and Shop Around the Corner. Shop as I've mentioned before is a must see! He costars with Jimmy Stewart in at least 3 or 4 movies. Argentina, was not ironically probably, born in Argentina in 1907 and had an astoundingly long career in movies and television. It's a Wonderful Life was one of her first roles, and she went on to play parts in everything from The Lone Ranger, Bonanza, Fantasy Island, to even yes ... Everybody Loves Raymond. Both William and Argentina lived long into their 90's with Edmunds passing away at 96 and Brunetti at 98!

     Contrasting the living environments we can start by just comparing the two locations. Here is a shot of the renter house that the family leaves.

Notice the 'To Rent' sign on the door. Potter doesn't waste any time. 

Pretty little holmes
 Then we move to the newly created Bailey Park and see that by no means is this the first home to be built. George and Mary have been very busy as we already can see that a community within and around Bedford Falls is there. In just two shots Capra has shown us both the hole George would leave with individuals as well as the entire town. 

Castle Martini


Then we see our first look at what is so appropriately 
called the Martini castle. Here are a couple shots stuck together so you can get the entire view from the front. 

     We can even see what address in Bedford Falls the family will not reside in. I might have to snatch some URL's with those numbers in case I want any additions to the blog. A nice view of their front porch which is a vast improvement over their previous version. 

     While at the grand entrance to their new home, we come to what I consider some of the finest lines of dialog in any film. Not crucial to the plot or storyline, the speech Mary and George give concerning their gifts is marvelous. It's short, it's telling, its true. It's more than worth repeating here. 

"Bread, That this house may never know hunger"

"Salt, That life may always have flavor"

"Wine, That joy and prosperity may reign forever!"

  Having saw the home in the film, now we can see the building from the Enesco village. It's from the fourth series, which is probably the best of all those released. It's also by far the rarest to find. This is one of teh best looking pieces too as it's differently shaped, and has a lot of detailed decorations. Here is the unboxing. 

Enesco Martini Home: Front angle

Enesco Martini Home: Front. Click below on 'Read more' to continue with the gallery. 

Enesco Martini Home: Side

Enesco Martini Home: Top

Enesco Martini Home: Certificate of A. 

  Now of the building itself. It's longer and much shorter than most of the other buildings. 

Enesco Martini Home: Front

Enesco Martini Home: Notice the front greenery and red.

Enesco Martini Home: Speech zone and candy canes

Enesco Martini Home: Side addition matching movie version.

Enesco Martini Home:  Side. 

Enesco Martini Home: Rear view. 

Enesco Martini Home:  Addition side. 

Enesco Martini Home: Side Addition. 

Enesco Martini Home:  Merry CHRISTmas. 

Enesco Martini Home:  Top view. Snow seems to have melted more on this building versus the rest. 

Enesco Martini Home:  Front angle. 

  Now some lit up shots. The camera became blurry so I will come back and update with some better shots later. But you can get a good idea from these. 

Enesco Martini Home: Front

Enesco Martini Home: 

Enesco Martini Home: 

Enesco Martini Home: 

Enesco Martini Home:  Profile

Enesco Martini Home: 

Martini: "I busted the juke-box*, too! [*note I feel compelled to point out that this word is pronounced "juke-a-box" in the film itself. To me, the movie would lose a littlesomething without thatcharming, superfluous "a"!]


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