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CaveGirl

Movies Made for Television

65 posts in this topic

Is that Richard Pryor in the b

 

LOVE "Carter's Army," a 1970 World War II drama that originally aired on ABC's Movie of the Week. The film stars Stephen Boyd as a white Southerner who reluctantly takes command of an all-black Army regiment in Germany during the final stages of the war. The movie also stars Richard Pryor in an early dramatic role and features Robert Hooks, Roosevelt Grier, Billy Dee Williams, Moses Gunn, Glynn Turman and Susan Oliver.

 

It was released on DVD under the title "Black Brigade."

 

fullscreen-capture-5222016-54613-pm-bmp. 

Is that Richard Pryor in the background of this photo?
 

Oops, I just noticed that yes you wrote that was Pryor. Sorry!

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Rather impressive since Robin Williams was 5 in 1956.

 

I know you meant 1986. Also, I don't think this was a TV movie.

 

Well, Robin was rather impressive, wasn't he? Maybe not that impressive. Bellow wrote the novella in 1956, so I miswrote. I looked to see whether a TV movie or no but couldn't find. No matter, I trust you on this. This is the type of thing that loses wagers, thinking something is so for so long and then "shock" in finding out otherwise (and hoping it is a "gentleman"s bet.").

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Two films come to mind: Maybe I'll Come Home In The Spring (1971) and The Execution of Private Slovik (1974), both of which I saw on television, either cable or PBS. The first film stars Sally Fields and has a somewhat heavy-handed anti-drug message. I thought, at the time, the film gave SF a chance to break free of her Gidget persona, but can't say if it would hold up after the passage of so many years. The second film stars Martin Sheen in the title role, a role that first introduced me to the actor. The intense subject matter is handled with sensitivity, and I still recall how it made a profound impression on my young mind.

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Well, Robin was rather impressive, wasn't he? Maybe not that impressive. Bellow wrote the novella in 1956, so I miswrote. I looked to see whether a TV movie or no but couldn't find. No matter, I trust you on this. This is the type of thing that loses wagers, thinking something is so for so long and then "shock" in finding out otherwise (and hoping it is a "gentleman"s bet.").

 

From what I could find out, it played theatrically in Canada and in Europe, but I didn't see any US box office info. It was released via HBO Films, which did handle a number of theatrical releases, but Seize the Day may have premiered in the US on TV on HBO.

 

Either way, it is a good movie, and thanks for mentioning it, as it doesn't get much attention.

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Well, Robin was rather impressive, wasn't he? Maybe not that impressive. Bellow wrote the novella in 1956, so I miswrote. I looked to see whether a TV movie or no but couldn't find. No matter, I trust you on this. This is the type of thing that loses wagers, thinking something is so for so long and then "shock" in finding out otherwise (and hoping it is a "gentleman"s bet.").

 

Were you thinking of "Dead Poets Society," for which Robin Williams received a 1989 Best Actor nomination? He played a 1950s prep school English teacher who emphasized the Latin term carpe diem ("seize the day").

 

 

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Two films come to mind: Maybe I'll Come Home In The Spring (1971) and The Execution of Private Slovik (1974), both of which I saw on television, either cable or PBS. The first film stars Sally Fields and has a somewhat heavy-handed anti-drug message. I thought, at the time, the film gave SF an chance to break free of her Gidget persona, but can't say if it would hold up after the passage of so many years. The second film stars Martin Sheen in the title role, a role that first introduced me to the actor. The intense subject matter is handled with sensitivity, and I still recall how it made a profound impression on my young mind.

I've seen that movie about Private Slovik, and it was really good, Gypsy.

 

You saying that one, reminded me of the tv movie called "The Executioner's Song" from 1982 about Gary Gilmore, with Tommy Lee Jones.

 

Thanks for your input!

 

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Were you thinking of "Dead Poets Society," for which Robin Williams received a 1989 Best Actor nomination? He played a 1950s prep school English teacher who emphasized the Latin term carpe diem ("seize the day").

 

Seize the Day (1986) trailer

 

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I fear that I must seem as if I am a broken record to call attention to: Formula of Love (1984). 

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0216755/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1

 

It is quite wonderful with good production values.

 

SansFin, I saw this recently based on your comments in Cave Girl's thread about magical films/magic in films. My knowledge of Russian cinema is extremely limited, and I really enjoyed discovering this film. The subversive humor came as a wonderful surprise, a bit of Month Python meets Peter Sellers. I understood the significance of some of the references, and I'm sure many more were over my head. I want to thank you for bringing this film to my/our attention.

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Seize the Day (1986) trailer

 

 

As Weekend Update contributor Emily Litella used to say on "Saturday Night Live": "That's very different. Never mind."

 

140207_2721447_Emily_s_Editorial_Reply_a

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SansFin, I saw this recently based on your comments in Cave Girl's thread about magical films/magic in films. My knowledge of Russian cinema is extremely limited, and I really enjoyed discovering this film. The subversive humor came as a wonderful surprise, a bit of Month Python meets Peter Sellers. 

 

 

It makes me very happy that you enjoyed the movie. I feel that all good movies work on many levels and I believe this movie in particular exemplifies this. The humour does have a wide range. It should come as no surprise to find subversive elements in any: Soviet/Russian movie. :)

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Guilty Conscience (1985) is wonderfully twisty. It is: Anthony Hopkins as eminent attorney and: Blythe Danner as his wife. It is difficult to tell much of the movie and not to give spoilers. The ending is quite perfect!

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The Night Stalker (Darren McGavin vs a vampire)

Along Came a Spider (Suzanne Pleshette vs the guy who killed her husband ... or did he?)

A Cold Night's Death (Robert Culp and Eli Wallach vs some clever monkeys)

Daughter of the Mind (Ray Milland vs his dead daughter's ghost)

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Every couple of years a thread pops up about TV movies, providing people an opportunity to revisit their favorites.  I admit to starting a thread on this topic myself.  I'll trot out my stable:

 

Isn't It Shocking? (1973).  Alan Alda stars as a small-town sheriff confronted with a candy-eating serial killer offing the local elderly.  He puts in an uncharacteristically low-key performance as a man out of his element in both his professional and personal life.  Joining him is a superior supporting cast, including Will Geer as an irascible doctor-****-impromptu forensic investigator.  Ruth Gordon as an idiosyncratic, irreverent elderly free-spirit taxi-driver.  Edmond O'Brien as--oh, um, I'd better not say.  Lloyd Nolan as an elderly deputy.  And best of all, Louise Lasser, as Mr. Alda's straight-talking secretary, who's really too good for where she is, but she's in love with the sheriff, so go figure.

 

Love Among the Ruins (1975).  Or, Larry and Kate Chew Up the Small Screen for Fun and Profit.  Lawrence Olivier stars as an elderly attorney, and what do you know, but a case of breach of promise against an old (in more ways than one) flame of his drops into his lap.  Well, they spend a hundred minutes or so fencing around--and that's the attraction of the movie.  Watching two giants over-do it so magnificently.

 

Missing Pieces (1983).  Dimly recalled clever, satiric suspensy movie starring Elizabeth Montgomery as a novice private detective and widow, who searches for the murderer of her reporter husband.  Lots of plot-twists and surprises, as you'd expect and want--not all pleasant.  Directed by Mike Hodges of Get Carter (1971), and Pulp (1972) fame.

 

The Night Stalker (1972).  Darren McGavin hit pay-dirt playing a Las Vegas newspaperman of the barely-holding-on-with-his-fingernails sort who tenaciously pursues an unbelievable story of a series of killings that seem to have been committed by a vampire (fancy that, a vampire in Las Vegas).  A really nifty and polished horror flick that could teach the big boys a few lessons about building up tension and playing with our expectations.  Joined by a superior cast of stalwarts:  Carol Lynley, Simon Oakland, Ralph Meeker, Charles McGraw, Elisha Cook, Jr., Claude Akins, and Larry Linville.

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The Night Stalker (Darren McGavin vs a vampire)

Along Came a Spider (Suzanne Pleshette vs the guy who killed her husband ... or did he?)

A Cold Night's Death (Robert Culp and Eli Wallach vs some clever monkeys)

Daughter of the Mind (Ray Milland vs his dead daughter's ghost)

 

 

Oh, I forgot about A Cold Night's Death.  Good one.

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I'm always greedy to find TV movies on video; I'm acquisitive like that when my budget allows.  I reckon at the least I've got some 500 TVM's on video and 1 on a MOD disc.  I am not well-rounded when it comes to hobbies.  I collect videos and the occasional disc and I like rounding up TV movies on tape.  The earliest TVM I've found on a legal video release was THE DOOMSDAY FLIGHT (1966) on MCA.   

 

     I've been fortunate enough to find a few PAL tapes of American TVM's; an original video of "The Strange Possession of Mrs. Oliver" (1977, w/Karen Black, George Hamilton and Robert F. Lyons) on 'Baccarat Video' from a collector friend of mine.  It's a Dutch release with small subtitles at the bottom of the screen.  'Twas a challenge to get hold of that.  Fun stuff! 

 

      I'm very fond of BLACK NOON (1971).  The only problem is it's never been released to any home video medium and my copy is pretty ropey.  The picture quality isn't too bad, but the the sound is too low.  I've got to turn the darn volume up very high to hear the dialogue.  My copy of CROWHAVEN FARM (1970) is much better.   

 

      I know that some folks just like to watch old TVM's without owning a physical "product" whether on tape or disc, but I like rounding up old-time Tvm's from CBS/NBC/ABC on video -- since they're not  W I D E S C R E E N  one does not have the "Ben Hur/Sydney Pollack" problem you find on tapes from that era of theatrical films. 

 

     Here's an approximate "TV Movie Breakdown" as to what labels I've got them on:  

 

U.S.A. Home Video - Over 100 TVM's on this label (I still need more as I lost several to mould due to my own stupidity.  Ugh!)

PRISM Entertainment - Over 60 TVM's on this label, including several British made-for-Tv films. 

Worldvision Home Video - Over 50 TVM's on this label

MCA Home Video - Approx. 10 TVM's from MCA

CBS/Fox Video and it's offshoot KEY VIDEO - Approx. 15 TVM's in all from both labels.

Transworld Video - 5 TVM's from them

VIDEO GEMS - At least 5 TVM's on "Video Gems"

MGM Home Video England/PAL format - 10 U.S.-produced TVM's in BIG silver boxes

Vestron Video and its offshoot Lightning Video - 5 TVM's 

Warner Home Video - 4 TVM's (Flood! (1976-Tvm), Fire! (1977-Tvm), Mrs. R's Daughter (1979-Tvm), The Last Ride of the Dalton Gang (1978-Tvm)).  I should have bought the 1976 TVM "The Loneliest Runner" on Warner when it was cheaper, but I didn't. 

-and-

1 MOD disc of a TVM:  KILLDOZER (1974-Clint Walker, Robert Urich, Carl Betz, Neville Brand).  I do need to pick up more of these MOD discs of TVM's in the future. 

 

     TCM aired the 1977 TVM "Green Eyes" recently; it came out on 'U.S.A. Home Video' in a BIG BOX in 1984 with a nice clamshell case inside holding the tape.  It's rather fancy. 

 

      There's also lots of other Tv movies I have on various labels in small quantities, like VCL.  I ought to snag a few more TVM's on VCL like JUST YOU AND ME, THE KILLING OF RANDY WEBSTER, THE CRACKER FACTORY.    

 

     I found the 1983 TVM "Missing Pieces" with Liz Montgomery on the prolific VIDEO CLASSICS label from Australia.   

 

      Little bit of luck:  I found a Danish VHS tape release of "A Cold Night's Death" (1973-Tvm) under the title "The Alaska Experiment".  Released in Denmark in 1987 by 'ABC Video'.  Never seen another one.  Good fortune was smiling upon me when I found that.  :)

 

     EDIT:  A postscript.  Let me say I enjoy reading y'all various postings in regards to TVM's.  Cheers. 

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Another TVM I remember liking a lot was 1983's SPECIAL BULLETIN.

 

You might call it an update on Orson Welles' famed 1938 radio broadcast of "War of the Worlds", as it's done in a similar mode and as if you're watching a normal regular scheduled TV broadcast on some imagined television network and that's suddenly interrupted with a news anchor reporting that terrorist are claiming they have a nuclear bomb on a boat situated in the Charleston SC harbor, and will detonate it if the U.S. Government doesn't cede to their demands of disarming its nuclear arsenal. The happenings thereafter are gleaned to the audience as if they're watching a breaking news bulletin on television.

 

(...and the ending was/is quite a shocker)

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     I found the 1983 TVM "Missing Pieces" with Liz Montgomery on the prolific VIDEO CLASSICS label from Australia.   

 

      Little bit of luck:  I found a Danish VHS tape release of "A Cold Night's Death" (1973-Tvm) under the title "The Alaska Experiment".  Released in Denmark in 1987 by 'ABC Video'.  Never seen another one.  Good fortune was smiling upon me when I found that. 

 

 

A lot of TV movies (especially the horror movies--like The Norliss Tapes, 1973) can be seen on YouTube.  The lacuna in my list is Missing Pieces.  

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Guyana Tragedy: The Story of Jim Jones (1980)


Helter Skelter (1976)


 


I watched those both a LOT when aired...but I was still a teen and fascinated with death. The book written about Jim Jones around that time was also really really good. 


 


THE LEGEND OF LIZZIE BORDEN (1975) is definitely one of my favorites. I'm a Lizzie Borden fanatic (don't make me axe you again!) and the story is done very well both in facts and production values. Stars Elizabeth Montgomery as Lizzie and Katherine Helmond as her siser-both wonderful performances.


To date the best depiction of the story and is available from most library collections.


 


Lizzie Borden's house in Fall River Mass (10 minutes from Providence RI) is now a museum and they have one of Mongomery's dresses from the film on display. She was TINY, like a size 3.

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Another TVM I remember liking a lot was 1983's SPECIAL BULLETIN.

 

You might call it an update on Orson Welles' famed 1938 radio broadcast of "War of the Worlds", as it's done in a similar mode and as if you're watching a normal regular scheduled TV broadcast on some imagined television network and that's suddenly interrupted with a news anchor reporting that terrorist are claiming they have a nuclear bomb on a boat situated in the Charleston SC harbor, and will detonate it if the U.S. Government doesn't cede to their demands of disarming its nuclear arsenal. The happenings thereafter are gleaned to the audience as if they're watching a breaking news bulletin on television.

 

(...and the ending was/is quite a shocker)

 

Speaking of Welles and the "War of the Worlds" radio broadcast, ABC aired a TV-movie on Halloween night in 1975 that re-created the studio phenomenon and its impact. 

 

Titled "The Night That Panicked America," the film starred the late Paul Shenar as Welles (who was 23 when his Mercury Theatre production for CBS Radio frightened listeners all over the country).

 

Directed by Emmy winner Joseph Sargent ("The Marcus-Nelson Murders"), the TV movie featured a real-life radio personality in its cast. Casey Kasem, who rose to stardom in the '70s as the host of the radio countdown show "American Top 40," appeared as one of the Mercury Theatre Players.

 

Panicked6.JPG

Shenar as Orson Welles

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Speaking of Joseph Sargent and "The Marcus-Nelson Murders," that 1973 TV-movie introduced Telly Savalas as NYPD detective Theo Kojack. The spelling was changed to Kojak when Savalas -- a frequent movie heavy -- began playing the dedicated cop in a CBS television series. "Kojak" ran from 1973 to 1978. Savalas won a 1974 Primetime Emmy as Best Lead Actor in a Drama Series.

 

"The Marcus-Nelson Murders" was a fictional account of a controversial rape and murder case that occurred in New York in 1963. Primetime Emmys went to director Sargent and writer Abby Mann, a 1961 Oscar winner for his "Judgment at Nuremberg" screenplay.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gD3oifn1HnQ

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Maybe I missed it among all the others, and while quickly going through all the previous posts,

 

But along with a couple of my favorites,

 

SPECIAL BULLETIN

 

and

 

DUEL

 

One of my all time favorite mftv movies was

 

THE DEADLY TOWER

 

Starring KURT RUSSELL as Charles Whitman, the Austin Texas university tower sniper.

 

There was also a pretty good one I think was called

 

GO ASK ALICE 

 

which dealt with the burgeoning drug problem among teen age high school students.  I think WILLIAM SHATNER played the title girl's father.  Ironically, my memory is muddled on this one as I was stoned when I watched it.  :D

 

 

Most other mentions( "Playing For Time", "QB VII",  "Carter's Army",  basically all of Lawrence's list) are ones I liked as well.

 

Another one I don't recall mentioned was MICKEY ROONEY'S fine (IMHO) performance in a TV movie titled BILL(1981)

 

 

Sepiatone

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Mercy or Murder? (1987)

 

Robert Young TV movie based on a true story (I believe):

 

Roswell and Emily Gilbert were married for fifty-one years, but for the eight final years of their marriage Emily suffered from Alzheimer's disease and the bone disease osteoporosis. Often in pain, Emily begged to die. In March 1985, 75-year-old Roswell shot Emily in the head. He said it was an act of mercy, but he was tried for murder and convicted as the nation debated euthanasia.

 

IMDb

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Re' TV Movies: SMALL SACRIFICE with Farrah Fawcett was terrific as was FATAL VISION with Gary Cole. I love true crime stories and have read both books which were the basis of these movies. Farrah and Gary are very, very good. If you like true crime drama and haven't seen these two, check them out if they are available anywhere. DUEL remains one of my very favorite TV movies and I have the DVD. So tense, and no cellphones to call for help, kids.

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Those Sci-fi "docu-dramas" i.e. "Evacuate Earth" are pretty good.

 

Rogue neutron star on it's way...

 

maxresdefault.jpg

 

....to destroy Saturn and Earth.

 

SCR5.jpg

67089_sucking-up-earth_7hqdjmj4am3d2cszx

 

 

Space Ark

 

1355289896_11111.jpg

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