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LawrenceA

April Schedule is Up

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I do love the Spotlight of Post War Melodrama.  Melodrama is one of my favorite genres and war adds an extra layer of drama! 

 

This is what popped out at me right now, but I'm sure come April, I'll find more!

 

4/3

 

Looks like it has birthday tributes to Marlon Brando and Doris Day.  I'm more interested however in the Frances Dee marathon in the evening.  I don't know much about Dee except that she was married to Joel McCrea.  However, I'd like to see I Walked With a Zombie.  I'm not a big fan of the horror genre, except I found that I enjoy the Val Lewton movies.  They have a different vibe and aesthetic than your typical horror movie.  Happy Land also looks interesting.  I like Don Ameche and the trivia says that this is Natalie Wood's first film (at age 5).  Finishing School is a pre-code that also features a young Ginger Rogers.  

 

4/5

 

Zsa Zsa Gabor tribute.  Queen of Outer Space.  Finally! I've been wanting to see this signature Zsa Zsa role! 

 

4/10

 

Tales of Manhattan.  This is one of Robert Osbourne's picks and it appears to be a premiere?  It features all kinds of people who I'm a fan of, two of them being Rita Hayworth and Ginger Rogers.  

 

4/14

 

Pillow to Post.  I've heard a lot about this film here on the boards.  It stars Ida Lupino, someone who I've just recently discovered (I knew who Lupino was, as she was on an episode of The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour, but she wasn't someone whose movies I'd seen).

 

Looks like an entire evening of Douglas Sirk melodramas.  I do enjoy his overwrought and glamorous looking films! 

 

4/23

 

In Name Only.  A Cary Grant and Carole Lombard film I haven't seen. 

 

Cluny Brown.  Even though I dislike Peter Lawford (I find his voice annoying), I want to see more of Ernst Lubitsch's films.

 

4/24

 

Hollywood: The Dream Factory.  I love this 1972 documentary about the MGM auction and the history of the studio.

 

4/26

 

Speedy.  I loved this Harold Lloyd silent film back when I saw it in September during the slapstick class.  I wouldn't mind seeing it again.  Harold Lloyd flips himself the bird--pretty funny to see in a 1928 film. 

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     I can't bring up the April schedule past the first seven days but one movie caught my eye.

On 4/3 TCM  is showing "An American Tragedy"  a Paramount film with Phillips Holmes. This film was the forerunner of "A Place In The Sun" which TCM shows every now and then.

     I hope that TCM doesn't scratch it from the schedule as they have many other films I've eagerly awaited (ie. Wharf Angel, Wild Girl, Desert Song). I'm sure this will be a TCM premiere.

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     I can't bring up the April schedule past the first seven days but one movie caught my eye.

On 4/3 TCM  is showing "An American Tragedy"  a Paramount film with Phillips Holmes. This film was the forerunner of "A Place In The Sun" which TCM shows every now and then.

     I hope that TCM doesn't scratch it from the schedule as they have many other films I've eagerly awaited (ie. Wharf Angel, Wild Girl, Desert Song). I'm sure this will be a TCM premiere.

 

I'm also glad to see AN AMERICAN TRAGEDY on the April schedule. It's part of an evening spotlight featuring Frances Dee movies. 

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I do love the Spotlight of Post War Melodrama.  Melodrama is one of my favorite genres and war adds an extra layer of drama! 

 

I think this is more of a marketing device and a way to differentiate these films from 30s melodramas starring Kay Francis and Bette Davis.

 

Only the first evening, which starts with LOVE LETTERS and THE BEST YEARS OF OUR LIVES, consists of what can be truly classified as post-war melodramas. I would hardly say things like the 1959 version of IMITATION OF LIFE qualify as post-war. By then, the Korean War has occurred and the conflict in Vietnam has already begun. 

 

And going back to Bette Davis for a moment, they've thrown NOW, VOYAGER into one of the later weeks which seems kind of weird. It was produced in 1942 at the beginning of U.S. involvement in WWII. So how does that count as post-war?

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This might be a bit of a stretch but maybe Now, Voyager fits as "Post-war melodrama" because in a majority of countries outside the U.S, it got released between 1945-1950.

 

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0035140/releaseinfo?mode=desktop

 

Possible, but it does seem like a stretch. I think they would have been smarter to replace it with a melodrama she made after the war called PAYMENT ON DEMAND.

 

I could "forgive it" if NOW, VOYAGER took place in the future, after the war. But it doesn't. As it stands, it's glaringly out of place alongside the other films being featured during this particular spotlight.

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Yes, it is 2nd on the line-up so it will get an intro so I look forward to the reasoning behind the choice.

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The first one that jumps out at me is Tales of Manhattan, a star-heavy, episodic-type Fox release revolving around different owners of the same coat rumored to be cursed. A TCM premiere, one I've read about for years. I'll definitely watch.

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"Tales of Manhattan" is the feature film starring the most screen legends from the American Film Institute's 1999 survey of the the top 25 actors and top 25 actresses of all time. Henry Fonda  was the No. 6 male, while Edward G. Robinson was in 24th place. Ginger Rogers was the No. 14 female, followed by Rita Hayworth at No. 19.

 

The film with the most AFI screen legends: A 20-minute 1931 short titled "Slippery Pearls" (a.k.a. "Stolen Jools"). Designed to benefit a tuberculosis sanitarium, the film featured appearances by Robinson, Gary Cooper (the No. 11 male), Joan Crawford (the No. 10 female), Barbara Stanwyck (the No. 11 female) and Buster Keaton (the No. 21 male).

 

500full.jpg

Fonda, Rogers and Cesar Romero in "Tales of Manhattan"

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One truly great thing about TALES OF MANHATTAN is the inspired pairing of Ginger Rogers & Henry Fonda (the only time in their long screen careers). I don't know why Fox (or another studio) didn't put them together again. Their chemistry is just so right, and they would have been good in a series of romantic comedies.

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Good stuff:

 

The Mind Benders ***

The Amazing Mr. Williams  ***

The Goddess (1958) ***

National Film Board of Canada's Animation Festival

The Sound of the Mountain (Yama no oto) ***

Tales of Manhattan ***

Deathwatch ***

The Great Man ***1/2

Ali: Fear Eats the Soul ***

Flesh ***

Bigger Than Life ***

 

 

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If there's rhyme or reason or some kind of connecting theme to the films being featured in the Character Actors SOTM spotlight, I haven't figured it out. Heck, I'm not even sure which character actor might be getting the spotlight from film to film. A lot of films from the '30s and '40s might have had at least two and maybe three or four recognizable character actors. I think their presence was almost expected as much as the stars' by the audience. If Charles Coburn, Spring Byington, Edmund Gwynn and S.Z. Sakall are all in the same film, who's to say which one of them is the featured character actor?  It looks like at least a few of these films will be featuring actors who usually got character parts in rare leading roles.

 

Anyway, here's just a partial list at my guesses of whom some of the featured character actors may be, based on checking out the casts lists of the films being aired: Guy Kibbee, Edward Everett Horton, Walter Connally, Adolphe Menjou, Charles Coburn, Eugene Pallette, Fay Bainter, Jack Carson, Frank Morgan, Charles Bickford, Edward Arnold, Thomas Mitchell, Victor Moore, Walter Brennan, Eve Arden, Jimmy Durante, Leon Ames, Marjorie Main, Thelma Ritter, Arthur Kennedy, Agnes Moorehead, Spring Byington, Hugh Herbert, Lionel Barrymore, Zasu Pitts, Lewis Stone, Ned Sparks, Roland Young, Dean Jagger and Donald Meek. A welcome spotlight on some folks who are well-known to us TCM viewers who might never actually get a SOTM or in some cases even a SUTS day.

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Good stuff:

 

The Mind Benders 

 

Yes-- this was the title that seemed most interesting to me. 

 

screen-shot-2017-01-13-at-12-07-10-pm.pn

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If there's rhyme or reason or some kind of connecting theme to the films being featured in the Character Actors SOTM spotlight, I haven't figured it out. 

 

Yes, it appears to be fairly random. And it also looks skewed more in favor of the men, which given all the feminism that's been applied to TCM's programming in the past year, well that does seem kind of noticeable. But it's a good group and though 98% of these films come from the overplayed WB, MGM and RKO piles, I think fans will enjoy the focus on these delightful performers. Even Miss Arden agrees.

 

screen-shot-2017-01-13-at-11-41-44-am.pn

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Films that haven't been mentioned yet:

 

April 6th--A day of Walter Huston films.

 

April 14th--"Harriet Craig" (1950)--Crawford is terrifying in this remake of "Craig's Wife"--Her hairstyle is one of the most severe I've ever seen.  Calling it unflattering is an understatement.

 

April 15th--"The Night of the Lepus" (1972)--A "So bad, it's good" horror film, with notably bad special effects and dreadful dialogue.

 

April 20th--"Blondie of the Follies" (1932)--Marion Davies and Jimmy Durante parody "Grand Hotel" in this one.

 

April 21st--"Queen Bee" (1955)-- A Crawford favorite buried in the early morning hours.

 

April 27th--"The Torrent" (1926), Garbo's 1st American film, and "Midnight Mary" (1933) are scheduled.

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Tales of Manhattan.  This is one of Robert Osbourne's picks and it appears to be a premiere?  It features all kinds of people who I'm a fan of, two of them being Rita Hayworth and Ginger Rogers.  

 

 

I believe that it is quite safe for me to guarantee that you will love the section with Ginger Rogers and Henry Fonda. He is so very precious in his boyish-bumbling way! She is quite wonderful in all ways!

 

I am very sorry that I will miss this as I campaigned for this movie in my: TCM Programming Challenge schedules. There seems to be little chance the cable company will restore service prior to autumn and I can find no decent method to stream TCM.

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April 14th--"Harriet Craig" (1950)--Crawford is terrifying in this remake of "Craig's Wife"--Her hairstyle is one of the most severe I've ever seen.  Calling it unflattering is an understatement.

 

 

I wish they'd air CRAIG'S WIFE and HARRIET CRAIG back-to-back one evening. It would be a great double feature.

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Is it just me, or have I noticed less birthday tributes? It's great Marlon Brando gets one, but it's not even for a full twelve hours. I also noticed Anthony Perkins, Gregory Peck, and James Garner (who were born on April 4th, 5th, and 7th respectively) didn't get one this year. Perkins and Peck received one on their birthdays, and Garner had one film as part of the Blake Edward tribute playing on his birthday last year. Can someone please tell me if this is just me?

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Character actors as SOTMs in April. Hurrah!!  I've been wanting TCM to do this forever . . . 

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Is it just me, or have I noticed less birthday tributes? It's great Marlon Brando gets one, but it's not even for a full twelve hours. I also noticed Anthony Perkins, Gregory Peck, and James Garner (who were born on April 4th, 5th, and 7th respectively) didn't get one this year. Perkins and Peck received one on their birthdays, and Garner had one film as part of the Blake Edward tribute playing on his birthday last year. Can someone please tell me if this is just me?

 

I don't know about the other days you mentioned, but the TCM Backlot members voted on which star would get a birthday tribute on April 5th. Gregory Peck and Bette Davis lost out to Melvyn Douglas. That's why we're getting some wonderful rarely seen Douglas pictures on the 5th. (Half of them were not even shown when he was Star of the Month.)

 

screen-shot-2017-01-14-at-1-19-20-pm.png

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I don't know about the other days you mentioned, but the TCM Backlot members voted on which star would get a birthday tribute on April 5th. Gregory Peck and Bette Davis lost out to Melvyn Douglas. That's why we're getting some wonderful rarely seen Douglas pictures on the 5th. (Half of them were not even shown when he was Star of the Month.)

 

screen-shot-2017-01-14-at-1-19-20-pm.png

Thanks for that bit of Melvyn Douglas info. I did not know the April 5th contest even occurred.

 

I believe Anthony Perkins is the only classic film star who was born on April 4th (this year would've been his 85th birthday). I was  sad I missed his birthday tribute last year because of school, and I'm disappointed I won't even get to SEE a birthday tribute this year.

 

Has Anthony Perkins ever been SOTM?

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