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ANYONE KNOW ABOUT TCM SHORTS ?


wheel123
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this is regarding the short comedy and drama fillers TCM shows between movies.

 

does anyone know how those mini 5-10-15 minute black and white 'skits or movies' were shown back in the old days?

 

things like the guy behind 8-ball comedy, the mini mystery behind killers eyes, all little mini-movie 5-10 minute things

 

were they shown on tv, in movie theaters?

 

can anyone who knows give me details please

 

thanks

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Generally, these were show before or between movies. They could be shown with cartoons or newsreels.

 

If you go back to the main forum page and scroll down to the "Genres" section you'll see a tab titled "Shorts."

There you'll find listings for them and a great deal of information provided by the very smart people who contribute to this board.

 

If you have other question about shorts you could put them there or in the "Information Please" forum.

 

Always happy to have new people here.

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Besides being an added entertainment value to the shows, shorts served another purpose. Today, especially in multiplexes, there may be a half-hour or more of down time between shows. This allows the people to leave and others to come before the next show starts. It's also a traffic control device for the theatre. If the theatre has twenty screens they don't want 18 of them to be starting or ending at the same time because it would cause a huge traffic jam in the lobby and the projectionist would need rollerskates to go from projector to projector. So this way they can space the films out.

 

Up until the 1960s most theatres ran "continuously" all day. The first show would start at maybe 10 am or noon or whatever and then there wouldn't be any breaks between shows so shorts were used to allow time for the folks to get out and in or to go buy popcorn or whatever.

 

Most of the shorts TCM shows were theatrical films but sometimes they show something like a "behinds the scenes" type of film about a specific movie. These were usually sent to TV stations in hopes that they would run them when they had time to fill and the studios would get some free publicity.

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Up until the 1960s most theatres ran "continuously" all day. The first show would start at maybe 10 am or noon or whatever and then there wouldn't be any breaks between shows so shorts were used to allow time for the folks to get out and in or to go buy popcorn or whatever.

 

Geezer Alert! Geezer Alert! Reliving his past! (Assuming this thread started with someone under the age of 40 - more like 20?)

 

When I was a kid (late '50s into the '60s), I would just go into a movie "whenever" and stay through everything till it came back around to the part I'd already seen - didn't matter that I already knew how the movie ended. (That would kill me now!)

 

I can remember being shocked the first time I realized I had to leave the theater when the movie ended - we had to go out of a different set of doors (down front, out to the parking lot) while they held others waiting for us to leave. And this was still at a single-screen theater (around 1970).

 

The last two movies I remember seeing in a real-live theater were Driving Miss Daisy and the refurbished (but with original soundtrack) Fantasia. Had to go 80 miles to a "stereo-enabled" theater to see that one (and there were probably 25 people there). Our town (with 6 theaters at the time) wouldn't even bring it to town. I have both of them on laserdisc now (not DVD) and have much better sound here at home. And I've got scads of shorts (courtesy TCM) I can play between my movies now - while I get popcorn, etc....

 

I miss the used-to-be experience of the theater, but not the cell-phone ringing/talking, boom-box-playing (yes!), explaining the movie, shouting across to friends, that I've had described to me by others. I drive by our quad-plex nearby and see two-thirds of the lot empty - sometimes 90%. I wonder why?

 

Keeping things in perspective, though - except for behavior: The 25-cent movie I saw as a small child (75-cents for adults, I think) would be very close to what our cut-price theater now charges, $3 matinee, $6 evenings for adults. The price index is at least 10 since those days, meaning $7.50 adult tickets now compared to 75-cent ones then, so...... And the 15-cent coke and 10-cent popcorn? Well, that HAS skyrockected, compared to the expected $1.50 and $1.00, no doubt about it. The last few movies I went to, I just went and watched; no refreshments till we got out and went somewhere. Talk about will-power (or cheap, or both)!

 

I miss the movie, sometimes-a-travelogue, comedy short (remember seeing Bowery Boys, Three Stooges on the big screen), and (on Saturday mornings) a serial episode. Then there were the commercials for the local Pontiac dealer (sometimes others), the reminders to visit the concession stand, etc. When I was still watching (6-7 years ago) the Always More Commercials channel, for awhile at least they would still show those concession thing-ys. Back when we realized how good Bob Dorian and Nick Clooney were and never dreamed all those film-preservation weekends and such wouldn't last.

 

Cherish (yes, that's the word) what we have here on TCM. Gently chide them when necessary (back to the true path), but encourage all the way - and share the good news with everybody you think even MIGHT like what we find here.

 

And visit the "upcoming shorts" thread, and thank MGMWBRKO for efforts far beyond what might be expected.

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Hey geezer! I guess I tipped my hand that I'm one too. I think I mentioned in another post, that it was a most common thing to just go to a movie at whatever time you could and watch it from somewhere in the middle and then stay through the next show to see what you missed. I can't imagine me doing that today. I relate very much to Woody Allen's character in "Annie Hall". He refuses to go to a movie that started about 30 seconds before even though he's seen it dozens of times. My wife had never seen that film so when I got the DVD recently we watched it together. When we got to that part, she poked me in the ribs and said "You realize that he's playing you, don't you?"

 

Cherishing TCM is a great idea. A lot of folks on these boards are too busy complaining to appreciate what we have. I guess they won't appreciate TCM until it's gone.

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the reminders to visit the concession stand, >>

 

"Let's go out to the lobby, let's go out to the lobby!"

"Let's go out to the lobby and get a bite to eat"

 

was my favorite with the dancing hot dog, box of popcorn and soda drink.

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I remember those hot dogs dancing on the screen, it got me every time. In the 60's cartoons were the staple when it came to short subjects but just as in the older shorts they were a added attraction making the wait for the Feature that more enjoyable. The whole point of going to the movies was that you could set and watch it all day long if you wanted, or at least twice. The second time around I would watch the people as much as the movie to see their expressions when the high points came in the movie.

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...go to a movie at whatever time you could and watch it from somewhere in the middle and then stay through the next show to see what you missed.

 

Yes, wasn't that delightful??

 

I can't imagine me doing that today.

 

They don't allow it today, they clear the theater. It is all about the money.

 

A lot of folks on these boards are too busy complaining to appreciate what we have.

 

We appreciated what we had. TCM is 1/4 gone already.

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...go to a movie at whatever time you could and watch it from somewhere in the middle and then stay through the next show to see what you missed.

 

Yes, wasn't that delightful??

 

It drove me nuts. I wasn't around in the U.S. when this was the custom, but lived in Italy where it was (and probably still is) the custom to come and go whenever they please. I was appalled at people who would walk in during the last 15 minutes of a movie -- seeing the end before the beginning?! Seemed there was always someone walking in the front of the screen. I'll risk today's rare cellphone ring to that anyday...

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JackBurley, the good part was, IF for some reason the movie was good enough to sit through a second time, one could.

 

Then again, today there IS no movie good enough to sit through twice. Once is probably more than enough for most. I don't know, I think I'd rather put up with the odd person leaving in the middle or third quarter of a movie rather than endure some rude jerk who doesn't have the brains to put their cell phone on vibrate.

 

But hey, that's just me.

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Hi Bill:

You responded to my request for a September schedule and for some reason I can't reply to you from that thread. I am looking for what movies were playing on September 7 between noon and 4:00 PM. I know this might sound strange, but my husband was in the hospital after suffering what appeared to be a minor stroke on Sept 6. I was sitting in the hospital room on 9/7 enjoying TCM (the only channel I watch) and I was told my husband would die in a few hours (he passed away at midnight). I was just thinking about that afternoon and could not remember what movie I was watching.

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Well, I guess I'm getting up there in years too!! I remember my sister and me going to the movies on a Saturday afternoon, watch the cartoon and 2 movies as many times as we wanted to and then go home, all for about $.50. I remember 2 weeks in a row going to see "The Absentminded Professor" and our mom getting mad that we spent another 50 cents!!

 

I cherish TCM, the movies they show are among the best ever. Even the movies you've never heard of will become favorites, just the way the look, the magic in them. I always say, the best movies are black and white and made way before the 60's =) 90% of my TV watching is TCM.

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...go to a movie at whatever time you could and watch it from somewhere in the middle and then stay through the next show to see what you missed.

 

Yes, wasn't that delightful??

 

It drove me nuts. I wasn't around in the U.S. when this was the custom, but lived in Italy where it was (and probably still is) the custom to come and go whenever they please. I was appalled at people who would walk in during the last 15 minutes of a movie -- seeing the end before the beginning?>>

 

Jack,

 

When I was much younger (has it been almost 40 years now, yes it has), I had no problem with going to a movie and seeing the last few minutes, then watching the second movie on the double bill and then the main feature all the way through even though I had already seen the ending.

 

When I hit my early twenties I stopped doing that. Now, if there is a movie I really want to see I have to see it from the beginning. With cable and satellite, I often have the option of seeing a film from somewhere in the middle but more often than not, I just can't watch it that way.

 

"Wonderland" with Val Kilmer about a bloody murder in Laurel Canyon here in LA in the late 1970s is one of the rare exceptions. I caught the movie about a third of the way in was fascinated and then had to turn it off because we were going out. Took about three screenings on satellite, but I finally saw the film from start to finish.

 

But that is the exception to the rule.

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