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Foreign films on TCM Feb. 3 & 4

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Tonight (Feb. 3) TCM will show *Gate of Hell* (1954), a Japanese film which is rarely shown.


Tuesday, Feb. 4: TCM's daytime schedule has seven foreign films:


*La Strada*

*The Burmese Harp*

*The Virgin Spring*

*Closely Watched Trains*

*The Battle of Algiers*


*Babette's Feast*


I've seen all but *Closely Watched Trains*. The other six are all very much worth seeing. To watch *La Strada*, The Burmese Harp, and *The Virgin Spring* back to back would wring me out emotionally, but this is a wonderful day of programming for those not allergic to subtitles.

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Seeing once again the Pontecorvo and Costa-Gavras movies (The Battle of Algiers and Z) back-to-back is the highlight of the stretch for me. Two of the best historical "docu-dramas" (for want of a better word) ever, with the former being one of my top 10 films of all time.

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kingrat, you should check out CLOSELY WATCHED TRAINS. It's a good introduction to the so-called "Czech New Wave."


I'm so happy that TCM is committed to airing great foreign films during its 31 Days of Oscar and beyond.

I'm especially looking forward to THE UMBRELLAS OF CHERBOURG on Feb. 18.

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I still remember seeing *Z* in a theater, when it was first released, in 1969. I went with a friend. Usually, we would start discussing a film as we walked out of the theater. We were speechless for three blocks. Of course this was only a few years after the assassinations of JFK, RFK, and MLK, so the film had a greater relevance than just Greece, to us.

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"The Burmese Harp". What a beautiful and moving film! It made me realize America for the most part is a caring and forgiving nation. Honoring Japanese films like "Roshoman" with Oscars a decade after Pearl Harbor."The Burmese Harp"with it's vivid and memorable black and white images...the footprints in the mud...the raindrops on the barbed wire fences...the parrot on the Monk's shoulder...and the faces of the Japanese soldiers dreaming of going home after the War....to a home that may never be....and the haunting music on the harp.

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I agree, *The Burmese Harp* is a stunning, moving film.


Unfortunately, I missed the last few minutes of *Gate of Hell.* TCM and the IMDb both said it was 84m. So, I thought it's 90m timeslot would be fine. Bob said it was 89m, and I guess it was, because the recording stopped before the film did.

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