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PBS stations showing classic films


mrroberts
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This past Saturday night my local PBS station (Philadelphia/Wilmington, Del ) broadcast the James Cagney film *Shake Hands With The Devil* . While movies aren't a big part of the overall PBS scheduling they do show a few films at night during the week. I'm just wondering if many other PBS stations around the country do something similiar, broadcast an occasional classic film? How easy is it for them to get these films, do the stations do this independently or do they get access on a national group basis (and then show the films on their own local scheduling)? This is one of the very few alternative sources I have for viewing any classic films. (TCM, FMC, AMC are the other stations I can get via local cable).

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PBS (Channel 13) in NYC shows those (same, I think) films on Saturday nights. I think it's partly a budget issue and not necessarily the best prints or the rarest titles. Just looked it up -- they showed *Shake Hands with the Devil* last night and will show *The Thomas Crown Affair* next Saturday.

 

Before Channel 13 became PBS, many decades ago, they had a great horror film series called Shock-o-Rama. They showed my favorite version of Poe's *Fall of the House of Usher*, a UK version made around 1949. I'm still waiting to see that again! They also showed a great little cheapie called *The Creeper,* about a scientist who can turn his hand into a cat's paw (with which he then kills). Waiting for that as well.

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MrRoberts - I live in the same area as you. So I have no idea if other PBS stations show classic movies. But thank you so much for reminding me to check out their schedule on Saturday night. Since it is "hosted" by Patrick Stoner. I can't help but think it is a local show.

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Many years ago my local cable company carried the PBS station out of Scranton (WVIA). I believe they tapped into the North Jersey /New York market as well. They would show a lot of great old movies well into the late hours, at a time when many stations signed off shortly after midnight. Again, I don't think many PBS stations in the country did this at the time. I guess they had easy, low cost access to a lot of the films in the old days.

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Those films are a part of a package that PBS has and is made available to the individual stations. Each station has the choice to use them or not and when to show them. This has been going on for several years now. The films aren't exclusive to PBS and many of them still show up on TCM.

 

Although our local PBS runs them on Saturday night, I rarely watch them because the station has a huge logo throughout and is always adding all sorts of animated graphics at the bottom of the screen plugging other shows and asking for donations which is totally distracting.

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WPBS and WLIW in New York have always relied on movies as an important part of their schedules. Ironic as it may seem, the PBS stations in Los Angeles (formerly KCET, and now KOCE) have never seen movies as being important. L.A.'s PBS stations are, and have always been, terribly inferior to their New York counterparts, adding to the pervasive sense that Southern California is a cultural wasteland.

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I miss tpt -the Mpls/St Paul- PBS outlet there. They used to have a good feature on Saturday nights. Down here in FL it's non-stop concerts of doo-**** and Four Lads... not that there's anything wrong with that. Just not my cup of tea, but apparently gets the blue-hairs of Naples tuning in..

 

Edited by: casablancalover on Jan 22, 2012 10:49 PM

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WPBS and WLIW in New York have always relied on movies as an important part of their schedules.

 

Excellent stations, given that 95% of everything else on television is garbage. PBS in NY on Saturday shows an indie film, then a short feature, then a classic film. The short, I believe, is chosen by the viewers.

 

WLIW is especially good, since WNET has gone corporate, and shows stuff that suits like. E.G., awhile ago they 'Americanized' Masterpiece and it was a dismal failure.

 

Who would imagine that given an enormous (I won't use the word ginormous) cable bill, that overall PBS would have the best stuff on television -- and it's free.

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Do WNET and WLIW still present movies other than the Neal Gabler-hosted weekly slot? Maybe around Halloween one or the other will show some public domain titles suitable for then day if not for broadcast.

 

 

I can recall the days in the 80s when WNET had multiple movies on Saturdays starting at 10pm, a treasure trove of MCA-owned stuff including the Paramount pre-48 films. Perhaps I'm not looking hard enough at their schedules, but their website does not make for easy browsing. Still, when I surf the grid on my cable syustem, both 13 and 21 are on my list and I rarely see any features.

 

There are lots of program-length commercials for various forms of music oldies and if you pledge 100 bucks, you'll get the full-length DVD set or CD release.

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clore, WNET has gone over to the dark side in terms of original programming. WLIW and WNJN, bless their hearts, still believe in the value of a UK rerun nugget from television.

 

No, sadly, neither schedules the b/w movies - I remember seeing Ingmar Bergman on channel 13 way back when - they cut their eye teeth on. It's mostly politics, men's health, or the occasional nugget now for all three.

 

Time marches on.

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For several years now, I've been watching the Jeremy Brett SHERLOCK HOLMES episodes on WLIW every Saturday at 7pm. But otherwise, I can't find much there on a regular basis.

 

I used to travel the East when I was in TV syndication and the local PBS stations in Boston, Pittsburgh, Syracuse and Buffalo could often keep me up later than planned with the late movies scheduled. This was before the days of TCM and I got to see many 30s and 40s films that were hardly ever aired in NYC.

 

I've watched a few of the Saturday WNET films, but I am spoiled and avoid those that aren't in widescreen. I can't manage to work up any enthusiasm for DR. ZHIVAGO in full screen but once in a while, there's a pre-Cinemascope Fox title that catches my attention.

 

But it's nothing like when WNET was WNTA and the bulk of the schedule was Fox titles.

 

 

 

 

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> {quote:title=Sepiatone wrote:}{quote}Here in Detroit, WTVS has had a Friday night movie presentation for several years now. I only tune in when they show something I haven't already seen on TCM recently.

> Sepiatone

 

So it is Friday nights. I keep meaning to check them out, to see if they really are in HD. Have you noticed? Does WTVS really show them in HD?

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I do remember KCET and KLCS here in SO CAL used show not only classic movies but SIlent one back in da day my first taste of silent movie was 1925 Phantom of Opera they used show Bette Davis movie or William Powell movie after that recently as early 1990s

 

I think what happen KCET lost it right it good during summer night where too hot in SO CAL you can't get sleep I remember coming home from high school party watching Metropolis or William Powell movie until 3am in the morning

 

BOY my mom would tick off

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