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The Greatness of TCM


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Around 5 this morning, I was having a bit of trouble getting back to sleep after the newspaper delivery person made his rounds up and down the stairs (my apartment's bedroom is next to that same stairwell), and I flipped on the TV...to TCM, of course. And there was a Chaplin short. It reminded me of what I said in the TCM Retrospective...where else can you have a silent in the morning and other great films throughout the day?

 

And to further emphasize that, after the Chaplin short, I started to watch Singin' in the Rain that I had recorded onto my DVR the other night. Feeling a little tired (at 5:30 in the morning? What are the chances?), I turned off the TV but forgot to stop the playback. Just a little while ago, I was getting ready for work and turned on the TV again and it was right in the middle of Gene Kelly and Cyd Charisse doing the Broadway Rhythm, with her in the green dress and taking off his glasses and polishing them alongside her leg (sigh, is there any man that wears glasses who hasn't felt his heart stop during that moment?). One of the many great moments in SITR.

 

Just these two instances this morning are proof enough when I said there is no place like TCM.

 

Too bad Judy Garland isn't still alive or else certainly they could get her to record,

"There's no place like TCM,

There's no place like TCM,

There's no place like TCM."

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When other forums bring up TCM, the enthusiasm for it always outpaces the few critics by such incredible measures.

 

I preferred AMC for many years but finally TCM had overtaken them, in my opinion, by TCM's 5th year. Then a few years later, AMC went into commercialdom - understandable, predictable - and their selection of films plunged to an even deeper pit.

 

I doubt if I see 1 AMC broadcast for every 50 or 100 on TCM. And probably every channel suffers from a comparable choice, too.

 

My biggest question has been, "Why am I so forgiving to so many bad films on TCM? Why do they always hold my interest when bad or boring contemporary films are only worth turning off or walking away from?"

 

Why am I willing to donate time to TCM broadcasts, especially for unknown films like THE TWONKY?

 

Because TCM's choices have repeatedly earned my donated interest - at least weekly, I'll see some new favorite 'lost gem', never having heard of it, never having seen it. Only because it's on TCM. If THE TWONKY had been scheduled on TNT or USA, I'd have never bothered because those networks have earned their 'hardly ever flipped across' status.

 

TCM earns it's place. So have all the other broadcasters.

 

I just wish the Cabling Broadcasting Industry hadn't bribed our legislatures to keep us from having Channel By Channel subscriptions, and forcing us to pay for hundreds of hours of package programming that I'll never watch, that I'd never support. Oh well, the hypocrites love their Big Lie about supporting 'free enterprise' and 'true market driven economies'.

 

Pass the bail-out money, eh, GW? Oops - he did! And in record time!

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I've always thought that TCM was at some level a philanthropic endeavor. With so many cable stations having abandoned their original premise the idea that TCM still strives to make their schedules as interesting as they can.

 

They program for what is really a niche market. While I imagine they have to turn some kind of profit it is not all about the money. It seems like it is all about us. Your time and your fellow programmers stories about the stay in Atlanta would seem to be the proof.

 

Thanks TCM.

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I really love the "TCM 15 Years in 90 Seconds" promo that is running now and in the Archives. There's just something about it that makes me feel a little tearful every time I see it. I think it is the same feeling I get when I see the ending of "Cinema Paradiso" {SPOILER ALERT, stop now if you haven't seen it} where the director gets to see all those romantic clips that were cut from the movies he saw as a boy by the censor. The romance of TCM is that everyone there truly loves movies as do we.

 

http://www.tcm.com/mediaroom/index/#player_area

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> {quote:title=filmlover wrote:}{quote}

> I really love the "TCM 15 Years in 90 Seconds" promo that is running now and in the Archives.

> http://www.tcm.com/mediaroom/index/#player_area

 

That is a _great_ promo, Peter.

 

By the way, here's a direct link to the promo itself, just FYI:

http://www.tcm.com/mediaroom/index/?o_cid=mediaroomlink&cid=236988

 

It would be hard to add anything that hasn't been said. Here's to TCM, may it be around for many years to come!! B-)

15y93lx.jpg

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Hey TCM;

Yes you are great!

We appreciate you!

I can remember when it was inconceivable to expect to see Charlie Chaplin or Harold Lloyd features (to name two examples) on television. Now we get entire days of them!

And not to mention all the other silent movies! All appreciated!

 

So, thanks again, TCM !!

 

And, Happy 15th.

 

.

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When I was growing up, it was not uncommon to find Camille playing on the late show.... or to get up at two in the morning to find Goodbye Mr Chips on channel 32. Saturday night had Creature Features on WGN, and PBS would play imports on Sundays.

 

Nowadays, if you suffer from insomnia, as I do, you are treated to shapely buns and thighs, the Abdominizer or endless Bare Essentials adverts. Perhaps you need to get the Magic Bullet blender, or if you are really lucky, you can see Jack Lalanne selling his power juicer.

 

But I don't care that commercial programming is ruining late night TV anymore. Because I've got TCM. It doesn't matter what time of day I tune in. I will get ALL the movies I had to search for as a kid..... and more. I will watch movies I might not have picked out, because I trust TCM to show me something of interest, even if it isn't my regular cuppa tea. Thanks, TCM, for never changing your ideals. I feel like they are programming just for me.

 

Message was edited by: JackFavell

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> {quote:title=Ollie_T wrote:}{quote}

> My biggest question has been, "Why am I so forgiving to so many bad films on TCM?

 

Because the absence of commercial breaks keep your attention to the broadcast. As soon as there's any "break" in the story, it gives you the opportunity to start flipping channels, go to the bathroom, pick up a book....anything.

 

I need that same concentration for silents....I need to be in a theater to really get the most enjoyment out of them.

 

I can't stand commercials, I am in no position to buy anything, nor do I want to see people eating freshly baked cookies or pizza or ANYthing that's going to drive me to the kitchen like a cartoon dog sleepwalking after a steak on a stick.

 

I wrote in another thread:

 

>If for any reason TCM left the air, I'd cancel my cable subscription the next day.

I'm not kidding.

 

Sure, I enjoy the ocassional historical show or news coverage, but without TCM I could easily live without it, especially for the dough it costs every month. I hope the cable companies realize what a huge boon TCM is for them. I bet they'd lose 30-40% of their subscribers if they dropped TCM.

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Tiki, I'm right there, with ya. The cable companies were pumping up digital channels with the promise that customers could get the channels they wanted, and then when the legislation was passed, they immediately forced more legislation that ensured we could only buy package cable deals. Not the much-lauded channel-by-channel subscriptions. I think TCM would do incredibly well in that environment. I'm shocked to hear that TCM has been booted out of so many standard and basic cable lineups and now only exists in some cities' digital channel line-ups, always the more expensive ones.

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I know responding "ditto" is lame so I won't - but when I read your post every word pushed my "why I love TCM" button. Though I grew up in Southern Calif., we, too, had stations out of San Diego but mostly LA that programmed the classics, the not-so-classic and the "creature features." I remember writing in my diary as a 10-year-old that I'd seen *The Great Lie* "starring Bette Davis, Mary Astor and George Brent." Those days are gone! Aside from the infomercial onslaught, the channels that do show "old" movies are airing *The Wedding Planner* or somesuch...to be fair, San Francisco PBS occasionally broadcasts a classic-classic on Sat. night -

 

But, like you, *I have TCM.* I came home tonight to *Ruggles of Red Gap* and now *Top Hat* - I've got "Isn't This a Lovely Day" and "Cheek to Cheek" to look forward to!!

 

Going from Berlin to Gershwin, "who could ask for anything more?"

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TCM, thanks for existing. I can't tell you what this channel means to me.

As a picky viewer, thanks for maintaining the original aspect ratios.

As a historian, thanks for showing actual classics.

As a critic hater, thanks for Robert and Ben as two voices I can trust.

As a life long learner, thanks for ever increasing my knowledge and world view.

As a non-conformist, thanks for NO commercials.

As a museum lover, thanks for all the shorts, celebrity interviews and profiles, and other awesome fillers.

Basically, thanks for not being AMC.

Please don't ever change. In this world, we need you more than ever.

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Filmlover and all: Yes, it's amazing, simply wonderful! I went on a trip recently where there was no TCM and I was going through withdrawals! When I got home, I was treated to an incredible evening of pre-code/early 30's films, right there on Sunday night in prime-time. Then my first full night home, a William Bendix tribute, with 3 straight noir films to lead it off! "Dr. Gillespie" block today. The beat goes on. Incredible station, and I agree with some others who said that if it weren't for TCM, I wouldn't even bother having cable. Cable used to be kind of cool, lots of diversity, never knew when you'd see an old B/W film or TV show pop up. Now it's a wasteland, TVLand is still running old TV shows, when they aren't running reality shows, and with all those pop-ups at the bottom of the screen. AMC is long gone. Sci-Fi rarely runs any classic programming any longer. TCM is the only one that gets it right, and long may it live!

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*TCM is the only one that gets it right, and long may it live!*

 

Mark,

 

I totally agree and so does the Peabody committee it seems. Earlier this month, TCM received the prestigious award for being the one cable network that hadn't strayed from their original mission statement of bringing the best in films of all decades to us, the viewers.

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Where else can you ask for a block of *Dr. Gillespie* movies, and they actually do so? And for what other station would I forego my day devoted to yardwork to watch an entire daylong tribute (well, almost, I'll watch *Bannerline* later)? Nowhere. Thanks a million, TCM!

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*...does that excuse really work?* - filmlover

 

Yes, it does. ;-)

 

I was planning on recording most of it, but it turned cold and cloudy today, and I really didn't want to face two-plus hours wading waist-deep in a coooold pond cleaning up muck. It's much more fun when it's warm and sunny. It'll have to wait till next week.

 

As a result of watching so many hours straight of Barrymore, I finally saw Rome's little segment, after *The Return of Peter Grimm* , I think. The only one of the four I've seen. Nicely done, Rome.

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