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Doris Day as SOTM March 2021


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Excited about Doris Day for the month? I think so. I like that she plays a lot of wholesome type characters and she is fairly funny in the movies I remember her in. She is one of those actresses who is easy to like.

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On 2/9/2021 at 8:23 AM, Stallion said:

Excited about Doris Day for the month? I think so. I like that she plays a lot of wholesome type characters and she is fairly funny in the movies I remember her in. She is one of those actresses who is easy to like.

Good deal! Yes, she's immensely likable. Her legacy as an entertainer will endure.

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schedule for doris fans!

screen 2.jpeg

monday the 1st of march

romance on the high seas (1948) with jack carson
my dream is yours (1949) with jack carson
tea for two (1950) with gordon macrae

tuesday the 2nd of march

the west point story (1950) with james cagney
lullaby of broadway (1951) with gene nelson
it's a great feeling (1949) with jack carson
storm warning (1951) with ginger rogers

monday the 8th of march

calamity jane (1953) with howard keel
i'll see you in my dreams (1951) with danny thomas

tuesday the 9th of march

on moonlight bay (1951) with gordon macrae
by the light of the silvery moon (1953) with gordon macrae
april in paris (1952) with ray bolger
lucky me (1954) with robert cummings
starlift (1951) with gordon macrae

monday the 15th of march

midnight lace (1960) with rex harrison
the man who knew too much (1956) with james stewart

tuesday the 16th of march

julie (1956) with louis jourdan
love me or leave me (1955) with james cagney
young man with a horn (1950) with kirk douglas
the winning team (1952) with ronald reagan

monday the 22nd of march
pillow talk (1959) with rock hudson
lover come back (1961) with rock hudson

tuesday the 23rd of march

send me no flowers (1964) with rock hudson
it happened to jane (1959) with jack lemmon
the tunnel of love (1958) with richard widmark

monday the 29th of march

that touch of mink (1962) with cary grant
the thrill of it all (1963) with james garner

tuesday the 30th of march

the glass bottom boat (1966) with rod taylor
please don't eat the daisies (1960) with david niven
billy rose's jumbo (1962) with jimmy durante

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I'm really happy to see It Happened to Jane. Base-line Doris was wonderful, but with the right co-star she could be even more wonderful, and Jack Lemmon sparked something special in her. I have to say the same of David Niven in Please Don't Eat the Daisies, which I think is easily on a par with the Doris/Rock comedies, largely due to the brilliant and seemingly effortless way she interacted with the child actors. Same for The Thrill of it All, which also featured her as a mother and paired her with an equally naturalistic James Garner. Jumbo is sort of sappy, but if you can get around that fact it's good fun and a great opportunity to see the peerless Jimmy Durante and Martha Raye in late-career roles. The one I don't get and probably never will is Julie, with plot holes the size of Jumbo. I don't doubt that Louis Jourdan could play a villain, but his role in Julie is ill-conceived and unconvincing (in my opinion). Anyway, March will be all the better for having Doris around so much. 

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12 minutes ago, DougieB said:

I'm really happy to see It Happened to Jane. Base-line Doris was wonderful, but with the right co-star she could be even more wonderful, and Jack Lemmon sparked something special in her. I have to say the same of David Niven in Please Don't Eat the Daisies, which I think is easily on a par with the Doris/Rock comedies, largely due to the brilliant way she interacted with the child actors. Same for The Thrill of it All, which also featured her as a mother and paired her with an equally naturalistic James Garner. Jumbo is sort of sappy, but if you can get around that fact it's good fun and a great opportunity to see the peerless Jimmy Durante and Martha Raye in late-career roles. The one I don't get and probably never will is Julie, with plot holes the size of Jumbo. I don't doubt that Louis Jordan could play a villain, but his role in Julie is ill-conceived and unconvincing (in my opinion). Anyway, March will be all the better for having Doris around so much. 

I also enjoy IT HAPPENED TO JANE and it's a shame that Doris Day and Jack Lemmon did not team up again. Ernie Kovacs has a field day playing a supporting role. 

I was surprised TCM's programmers scheduled PLEASE DON'T EAT THE DAISIES at the end of the month. It's a great family comedy and should have been given a nice primetime slot earlier in the month.

I think the comparison you draw between DAISIES and THE THRILL OF IT ALL is accurate. She worked very well with children. This is especially true in her self-titled sitcom later in the 60s.

As much as I am a fan of Stephen Boyd, I think he was miscast in JUMBO and it would have helped if Doris had a different leading man in that film. They just don't have much chemistry together. 

I love JULIE. Yes, the story is highly improbable but it's interesting to see Doris in a bonafide drama with some tense moments to perform in the cockpit of the plane. The exteriors for JULIE were done on location in Carmel-by-the-Sea. She fell in love with the area and moved there a short time later. She would spend much of her life in Carmel. So the making of that film had great significance for her personally.

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I'm also a fan of Stephen Boyd, but also agree he probably wasn't the best choice. I wonder what could have happened if someone like Dick Van Dyke had been cast. He had a (stage) musical under his belt and I think he and Doris were fairly equal on the likeability scale. I can see them meshing really well.

You're not alone about Julie. I know I'm an outlier and my objection isn't to Doris. As well as my antipathy to Louis Jourdan in this role, I just can't warm up to Barry Sullivan either. But you're right; the setting is stunning. 

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8 hours ago, DougieB said:

I'm also a fan of Stephen Boyd, but also agree he probably wasn't the best choice. I wonder what could have happened if someone like Dick Van Dyke had been cast. He had a (stage) musical under his belt and I think he and Doris were fairly equal on the likeability scale. I can see them meshing really well.

You're not alone about Julie. I know I'm an outlier and my objection isn't to Doris. As well as my antipathy to Louis Jourdan in this role, I just can't warm up to Barry Sullivan either. But you're right; the setting is stunning. 

Yes, Dick Van Dyke would have been an ideal choice to costar with her in JUMBO.

One reason I like JULIE is because I think it's more economic in its handling of the woman-in-peril plot. MIDNIGHT LACE, which came a few years later and basically covers the same territory, grates on my nerves.

How many times would someone actually keep answering the phone to an abuser before either getting their number changed or having someone else screen the calls. Because they keep having her answer the phone, the story loses credibility for me. 

JULIE doesn't lose credibility, even though it's somewhat far-fetched, because we have Doris performing such a heroic deed at the end.

The irony is that Doris' real-life husband Marty Melcher was much more controlling and manipulative than either Louis Jourdan or Rex Harrison were in these two movies!

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I agree that Midnight Lace is short on credibility, but I'm glad it's back in circulation after having been unavailable for so many years.  You're right that Julie is more "economic in its handling of the woman-in-peril plot", but it's the very lack of economy in Midnight Lace, the visual and thematic overkill, that tickles me, that makes it such silly fun. Ross Hunter's hand is everywhere and he did for Doris what he did for Lana Turner in Portrait in Black, another Watch-her-suffer-in-fabulous-gowns-type role. The movie's named after her negligee, for Pete's sake. Also, for me, Myrna Loy is a joy to watch in this movie; her belief in Doris wavers but her love never does and it's fascinating to see it play out on her face. So, you watch Julie and I'll watch Midnight Lace and we'll both be happy. 

I'm glad you mentioned Marty Melcher because he was so instrumental in her involvement in these two movies, both of which were entirely stressful for Doris. One has to wonder how much he was acting in her interest and how much in his own. As you said, controlling and manipulative.

 

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On 2/13/2021 at 4:03 PM, DougieB said:

I agree that Midnight Lace is short on credibility, but I'm glad it's back in circulation after having been unavailable for so many years.  You're right that Julie is more "economic in its handling of the woman-in-peril plot", but it's the very lack of economy in Midnight Lace, the visual and thematic overkill, that tickles me, that makes it such silly fun. Ross Hunter's hand is everywhere and he did for Doris what he did for Lana Turner in Portrait in Black, another Watch-her-suffer-in-fabulous-gowns-type role. The movie's named after her negligee, for Pete's sake. Also, for me, Myrna Loy is a joy to watch in this movie; her belief in Doris wavers but her love never does and it's fascinating to see it play out on her face. So, you watch Julie and I'll watch Midnight Lace and we'll both be happy. 

I'm glad you mentioned Marty Melcher because he was so instrumental in her involvement in these two movies, both of which were entirely stressful for Doris. One has to wonder how much he was acting in her interest and how much in his own. As you said, controlling and manipulative.

My view is Marty Melcher saw Doris Day as a cash cow. She was a commodity that he could keep exploiting and repackaging. He basically overworked her in the 50s and 60s. It was all for his financial gain, not hers.

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The  movie   Avanti  1972,   would  be  a good  vehicle for  Doris  Day  and  Jack  Lemmon.  Billy  Wilder  directed  this  movie and  the  Italian   locations  were beautiful.

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8 hours ago, cinemaman said:

The  movie   Avanti  1972,   would  be  a good  vehicle for  Doris  Day  and  Jack  Lemmon.  Billy  Wilder  directed  this  movie and  the  Italian   locations  were beautiful.

I find AVANTI a misguided Wilder effort, rather misogynistic in spots. Plus I don't think Doris would have wanted to play a plump character who can't get a man because she's overweight. The role would have been all wrong for her.

But I do agree that Doris and Jack should have teamed up again, even if it had been a made-for-television movie.

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13 hours ago, TopBilled said:

My view is Marty Melcher saw Doris Day as a cash cow. She was a commodity that he could keep exploiting and repackaging. He basically overworked her in the 50s and 60s. It was all for his financial gain, not hers.

Sort of like poor Debbie Reynolds. Marty managed Doris for almost the entire 1950's and her career was certainly distinguished during that time, but it makes me wonder what she might have done otherwise, particularly in terms of musicals. I seem to remember that there were talks about South Pacific, though I can't remember specifically why that was a no-go. Guys and Dolls, for instance, might have been a good fit, especially since the role went to a non-singer. 

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11 hours ago, DougieB said:

Sort of like poor Debbie Reynolds. Marty managed Doris for almost the entire 1950's and her career was certainly distinguished during that time, but it makes me wonder what she might have done otherwise, particularly in terms of musicals. I seem to remember that there were talks about South Pacific, though I can't remember specifically why that was a no-go. Guys and Dolls, for instance, might have been a good fit, especially since the role went to a non-singer. 

Screen Shot 2020-09-03 at 5.31.15 PM

My guess is that if musicals hadn't starting going out of fashion in the mid-50s when her contract at Warners ended, she would have made musicals when she moved over to MGM. Instead MGM put her into LOVE ME OR LEAVE ME (a dramatic biopic that had some songs), JULIE (which was a woman-in-peril drama) and THE TUNNEL OF LOVE (a situation comedy). If she had been at MGM in the late 40s or early 50s, she probably would have been costarring with Gene Kelly and Fred Astaire.

She certainly would have done well in SOUTH PACIFIC or in GUYS AND DOLLS. 

One of her later musicals, which I love, is THE PAJAMA GAME...an independently produced adaptation of a Broadway hit that was distributed by Warners. But unfortunately, TCM is not airing it in March. I believe the rights are now controlled by Paramount and it has been available for streaming in recent years on Amazon Prime.

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I know it's hard to believe, but RIchard Burton, no less, was up for that part in Jumbo. I don't remember the particulars, but he got the Cleopatra role instead and history was made. (And Doris was stuck with Stephen Boyd).....

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11 hours ago, TopBilled said:

Screen Shot 2020-09-03 at 5.31.15 PM

My guess is that if musicals hadn't starting going out of fashion in the mid-50s when her contract at Warners ended, she would have made musicals when she moved over to MGM. Instead MGM put her into LOVE ME OR LEAVE ME (a dramatic biopic that had some songs), JULIE (which was a woman-in-peril drama) and THE TUNNEL OF LOVE (a situation comedy). If she had been at MGM in the late 40s or early 50s, she probably would have been costarring with Gene Kelly and Fred Astaire.

She certainly would have done well in SOUTH PACIFIC or in GUYS AND DOLLS. 

One of her later musicals, which I love, is THE PAJAMA GAME...an independently produced adaptation of a Broadway hit that was distributed by Warners. But unfortunately, TCM is not airing it in March. I believe the rights are now controlled by Paramount and it has been available for streaming in recent years on Amazon Prime.

I dont think Pajama Game has been broadhcast in over 20 yrs! Is Teacher's Pet being broadcast? That's another MIA offering I dont understand that is rarely shown. And its MGM!

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9 minutes ago, Hibi said:

I dont think Pajama Game has been broadhcast in over 20 yrs! Is Teacher's Pet being broadcast? That's another MIA offering I dont understand that is rarely shown. And its MGM!

TEACHER'S PET (1958) is a Paramount film and is not scheduled on TCM.

Sometimes it airs on the RetroPlex channel.

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I was hoping to see Young at Heart (1954) listed.  I'm sure TCM has shown it but it seems to have been awhile ago.  Anyway, a familiar list of reliable Doris Day movies.  We watched The Man Who Knew Too Much  again recently and forgot what a solidly entertaining and rather underrated Hitchcock movie it is.  

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3 hours ago, TopBilled said:

TEACHER'S PET (1958) is a Paramount film and is not scheduled on TCM.

Sometimes it airs on the RetroPlex channel.

No wonder! I've been thinking it was MGM all this time......

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LOVE ME OR LEAVE ME (1955) 

Screen Shot 2020-09-03 at 5.31.15 PM

I have to say that I love the title of this movie, mainly because despite the billing and the fact that it's intended to be a star vehicle for Doris, Jimmy Cagney is playing the title character. It says "Love HIM or Leave HIM" because the "me" she has to love or leave is really him. The whole thing is about him and his control/hold on her. Again shades of Marty Melcher.

It must have been strange for Doris to play a woman whose true-life story in some key ways resembled her own. In the movie, Ruth Etting leaves Martin Snyder...while in real life Doris Day never left Martin Melcher.

Jimmy Cagney is fantastic as the mobster Svengali.

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7 hours ago, TopBilled said:

Scroll up. It's the fourth post on this page of the thread.

What are they doing? Running them 2 nights a week? A disappointing line up. Not showing any of her later 60s films. No Teacher's Pet, of course and Pajama Game, but didnt expect those.

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19 minutes ago, Hibi said:

What are they doing? Running them 2 nights a week? A disappointing line up. Not showing any of her later 60s films. No Teacher's Pet, of course and Pajama Game, but didnt expect those.

Just one night per week.

There are 5 Mondays in March, and they are spreading her films out over those 5 different nights.

I notated some of them as airing on Tuesdays, because they appear on the schedule after midnight and in a few cases go into the late morning hours of the following day.

Make sense?

They are airing several of her films from the 1960s-- the comedies with Rock Hudson, a comedy with James Garner, a comedy with Rod Taylor, etc.

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I think Martin Melcher was credited for Doris' come back with Pillow Talk in 1959 after such flops as Julie, Teacher's Pet, The Tunnel of Love, and It Happened to Jane in the mid and late 1950's. (Melcher was freaking out at this point) 
 

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