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Till the End of Time vs. The Best Years of Our Lives


sewhite2000
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So, I watched Till the End of Time last night for the first time ever, and it's probably impossible for any longtime TCM viewer to watch without comparisons to The Best Years of Our Lives arising. They were both released in 1946. They were both released by RKO. They're both about three World War II veterans who have just been or are just about to be discharged in the opening scenes and are returning home to lives they barely remember and maybe don't comfortably fit into anymore. In both films, one of the three veterans has lost two extremities (hands in Best Years, legs in Time). Niven Busch, who wrote the novel on which Time is based, was married to Teresa Wright, one of the stars of Best Years.

The difference between the two movies, of course, is one of them got nominated for a slew of Oscars, including Best Picture, got called by Bette Davis the best film of all time and gets to appear on TCM probably 10 times as often as the other. So, I'm curious what my fellow posters who've also seen Time think about it and how it stands up having to (probably unfairly) compete with Best Years, then and now.

Best Years certainly has more impressive casting across the board, and it's interesting to note that two of its three protagonists are older-than-normal military personnel, as represented by Frederic March and Dana Andrews. All three protagonists in Time are supposed to be around the same age as Harold Russell's Homer in Best Years, very young men who hadn't started to make a life for themselves apart from their parents when they were called to duty.

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You know, for whatever the reason, I've never seen "Time".  I still have questions about TBYOOL, so will digress a bit here....

BOONE CITY.  Had to be a "jumpin' " town, since it seemed to have a night life so swingin' it could atract such high-end entertainment like GENE KRUPA, who was still, despite a short stint for a drug bust, on top of his game and fame in '45( when I,m assuming the story begins).

So, back to "Time", it sounds interesting enough, and more so than other movies TCM has shown over the years that I'd go along with a showing of it too.

Sepiatone

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I love movies where big jazz stars just happen to be at the local nightclub, and it's not treated as any kind of special occurrence. There's a potential day for a Programming Challenge lineup. I'll just throw that out for free! Gene got around, I guess. He also happens to be at that nightclub Barbara Stanwyck is performing at in Ball of Fire. And don't get me started on the all-star lineup at that club Mickey Rooney works at in The Strip

The town in Till the End of Time appears to be much smaller than Boone City. There is a bar all our protagonists seem to keep going to, and an avuncular owner something like Hoagy Carmichael who also won't serve hard liquor to the barely legal (but doesn't play the piano), but the only music there is on the jukebox.

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