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How Do You Like Them Shorts?


Palmerin
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I just love the shorts that are featured between the movies of TCM, particularly the musicals and the Pete Smith comedies; would you like a month to be dedicated to the best of those shorts?

 

I guess it would be interesting if TCM was to group (categorize) the shorts into some type of themes,  but I don't see them doing that.  The basic reason being that TCM uses shorts to fill in space so that,  generally, movies start on the hour or half-hour.    So I doubt they would run a series of shorts in place of movies.

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I just love the shorts that are featured between the movies of TCM, particularly the musicals and the Pete Smith comedies; would you like a month to be dedicated to the best of those shorts?

I just love the shorts that are featured between the movies of TCM, Same here.

 

A strange one on today, did you see it? Backdrop was a set of oversized books, it featured dancers, someone who looked like Betty Hutton singing, and four guys in black-face.

 

Very weird.

 

Way back when, AMC used to feature soundies.

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I wish that they would show at one time all short mystery movies written by: S.S. Van Dine which were made in early 1930s. I like them very much!

 

I am sorry to say that I am ambivalent re: Pete Smith comedies. I find some very funny and I find others very stupid.

 

I would like to see them substitute blocks of shorts of a particular theme for the: Now Playing segments which endlessly repeat.

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I like the Robert Benchley shorts; they're pretty funny.  Pete Smith can be hit-or-miss but I've seen some good ones and I think there are more hits than misses.  The travel ones can be interesting, especially historically.  Sometimes I will see one and wonder how much a certain place has changed.  I saw a Lillian Roth one the other night; I think it was from 1934.

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I just love the shorts that are featured between the movies of TCM, particularly the musicals and the Pete Smith comedies; would you like a month to be dedicated to the best of those shorts?

I have made a similar suggestion to TCM, but never got a response.  I also suggested that they list the shorts in Now Playing.  Interesting that my cable provider can show the shorts that are scheduled at least a week in advance using the info.  button on my remote, but TCM can't?  Shows time, title and description.

I especially like the James Fitzpatrick Travel Talk ones.

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I used to like watching the "shorts" between movies when we first got cable, and I enjoy some of the ones shown on TCM.  I regret that "shorts" seem to be so specialized that many theaters( all of them in MY area) don't show them.  I hate that during the Oscar presentation, they award an Oscar for "best short subject", and mention an array of "shorts" that I never saw because no theater around here( or probably much of anywhere else) ever shows them!

 

 

Sepiatone

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I too enjoy the shorts, especially Robert Benchley and James Fitzpatrick Travelogues. The reason I like Benchely goes without saying, his is too droll and his topics are timeless. The James Fitzpatrick shorts are a "moment in time" before the world was filled with look alike box stores and strip malls and the interstate.

 

I too would like more of them...if I have to watch one more "word of mouth" that is repeated for the 100th time, or worse, Letterbox...I don't know. Fortunately the Mute button comes in handy.

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I just love the shorts that are featured between the movies of TCM, particularly the musicals and the Pete Smith comedies; would you like a month to be dedicated to the best of those shorts?

In a word:  NO.

 

I love Benchley,  the crime shorts, and a tiny handful of the older quasi-documentaries, like the one on the Bowery.  Can't stand those color travelogues, and a little bit of Dave O'Brien goes a long way.  I like him much better as a dope fiend in Reefer Madness than I do when he's just playing a henpecked husband who can't even boil an egg.

thctriple_shot34l.jpg

The next time my wife smashes into the garage door, I don't know WHAT I'm liable to do!

 

But the real problem is that other than cartoons, even the best of those shorts are best viewed in small doses, with plenty of time in between.  Too many of them in one sitting would be like stuffing a week's worth of desserts down your throat in one meal.

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I remember one of them old "travelogue" shorts had some footage of a resort located on the shoreline of a lake at the foot of..."Picturesque Mount ST.Helen's"!  Of course, filmed MANY years before ST. Helen's blew up!  When I saw that, I wondered if the resort was still there at the time the mountain DID blow up....

 

 

Sepiatone

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Does TCM still show cartoons?

 

Because if the answer is yes, then my response is that it doesn't do it often enough because I keep missing them.

 

Miss Cartoon Alley, with Ben M. as host.

 

Now that TCM has a deal coming up with Disney we may be seeing more of Mickey and Donald and the gang. And that's fine.

 

Except for one thing: the Disney cartoons appealed to me as a kid, as did the Looney Tunes stuff, with Bugs, Daffy, Foghorn, Sylvester, etc.

 

The difference between the two, though, is that the crazy guys working out of "Termite Alley," I think they called their shack on the Warners lot, were writing their Bugs and Daffy cartoons, keeping adults in mind. At Disney I believe that the kids were their prime targets in their writing.

 

That's why I'll take a good Bugs Bunny or Daffy Duck cartoon ANY DAY (!!!) over a Mickey Mouse or Donald Duck.

 

Having said that, though, I will still welcome seeing the Disney cartoons on TCM, if that is going to happen. But, is it?

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Yep Tom, what the boys at "Termite Terrace"(that was actually their chosen nickname for the remote studio bungalow they felt Jack Warner had located them to) produced will also always be held in higher regard by me than those made by Uncle Walt. They were just more "hip".

 

And, I also feel this way about the animated shorts made by Tex Avery after he left Termite Terrace and began to helm MGM's animation studio, and in which the following Avery cartoon short's opening scene starring his character Screwball "Screwy" Squirrel is one which pretty much makes great fun of Disney cartoons and their more "cutesy" themes...

 

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I remember one of them old "travelogue" shorts had some footage of a resort located on the shoreline of a lake at the foot of..."Picturesque Mount ST.Helen's"!  Of course, filmed MANY years before ST. Helen's blew up!  When I saw that, I wondered if the resort was still there at the time the mountain DID blow up....

 

 

Sepiatone

I have Googled resorts and locations from old movies to see what happened to them.  For example, the resort in The Big Sleep.  Interesting what turns up.

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I remember one of them old "travelogue" shorts had some footage of a resort located on the shoreline of a lake at the foot of..."Picturesque Mount ST.Helen's"!  Of course, filmed MANY years before ST. Helen's blew up!  When I saw that, I wondered if the resort was still there at the time the mountain DID blow up....

 

 

Sepiatone

 

Yep Sepia, it still stood until that fateful day.

 

However, I think I'll let Harry Truman(no, NOT "The Buck Stops Here" guy) tell ya all about it here...

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ChDYaeUtoQ

 

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Does TCM still show cartoons?

I think Cartoon Network/Boomerang got the rights to run the MGM/WB cartoons several years back. They haven't been on TCM in quite some time. It's a shame, but there you are.
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Now that TCM has a deal coming up with Disney we may be seeing more of Mickey and Donald and the gang. And that's fine.

 

Except for one thing: the Disney cartoons appealed to me as a kid, as did the Looney Tunes stuff, with Bugs, Daffy, Foghorn, Sylvester, etc.

 

The difference between the two, though, is that the crazy guys working out of "Termite Alley," I think they called their shack on the Warners lot, were writing their Bugs and Daffy cartoons, keeping adults in mind. At Disney I believe that the kids were their prime targets in their writing.

 

That's why I'll take a good Bugs Bunny or Daffy Duck cartoon ANY DAY (!!!) over a Mickey Mouse or Donald Duck.

 

I dunno about that.  I grew up on both Disney and Warners cartoons in the 50's, and showed bootleg copies of both of them for a living back in the 70's.  And to this day, I find the best of the Donald Duck cartoons every bit as funny as anything WB ever put out.  And in fact far better than the formulaic Roadrunner cartoons, where if you've seen one you've seen em all.

 

To get specific, if you don't find these two Disney gems as funny as anything Bugs or Daffy did, I don't know what to say: (P.S. They both feature Donald, in spite of the title.)

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qLbmWE-0Rmk

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Yep Tom, what the boys at "Termite Terrace"(that was actually their chosen nickname for the remote studio bungalow they felt Jack Warner had located them to) produced will also always be held in higher regard by me than those made by Uncle Walt. They were just more "hip".

 

And, I also feel this way about the animated shorts made by Tex Avery after he left Termite Terrace and began to helm MGM's animation studio, and in which the following Avery cartoon short's opening scene starring his character Screwball "Screwy" Squirrel is one which pretty much makes great fun of Disney cartoons and their more "cutesy" themes...

 

You're right, Dargo, Tex Avery did some great wild stuff once he got over to MGM. Screwy Squirrel never really caught on with the public (a bit of a nasty rodent that, lacking the wiseguy lovability of Bugs back at Warners). Still, I think those six or so Screwy squirrel cartoons made are very good.

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Andy, as always, it's just a matter of taste, especially when it comes to humour. The Band Concert is an exceptional piece of animation, there's no doubt. I just don't find it HA-HA funny. But entertaining? To be sure!

 

I will stand by my earlier statement, though, that, generally speaking the Looney Tunes cartoons of the '40s and '50s produced at Termite Terrace (thanks, Dargo, for correcting me on that) are more adult than the stuff churned out by Disney.

 

Oh, by the way, when I listed those Warners cartoon characters, I left out the Roadrunners. The "charm" of those cartoons always eluded me (even if I had a bit of a soft spot for Wile E. Coyote as a character).

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I like the Robert Benchley shorts; they're pretty funny.  Pete Smith can be hit-or-miss but I've seen some good ones and I think there are more hits than misses.  The travel ones can be interesting, especially historically.  Sometimes I will see one and wonder how much a certain place has changed.  I saw a Lillian Roth one the other night; I think it was from 1934.

Benchley's are hilarious, far and away the funniest of the shorts.

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You're right, Dargo, Tex Avery did some great wild stuff once he got over to MGM. Screwy Squirrel never really caught on with the public (a bit of a nasty rodent that, lacking the wiseguy lovability of Bugs back at Warners). Still, I think those six or so Screwy squirrel cartoons made are very good.

 

True Tom. Screwy has seemed the forgotten cartoon short character now days, hasn't he.

 

Now, here's a question regarding this guy: Am I the only one who thinks Tex might have thought him up after watching Mickey Rooney's smart-alecky character in "Boys Town"? 'Cause, Screwy always reminded me of Rooney, and I always thought even his voice was a bit like Rooney's.

 

This is similar to how I always thought of another of MGM's cartoon shorts "stars", Barney Bear, might have been patterned after Wallace Beery, what with both often featured using the same expressions of frustration. i.e.,the hand slowly swiping down their faces, during and after some hapless event which has befallen them.

 

(...btw, and re The Roadrunner cartoons...there's a very noticeable drop in quality in these cartoon shorts especially after WB began a reduction in expenditures for their animation dept after the late-1950s, and which even the great Chuck Jones could not effectively conceal) 

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Now, here's a question regarding this guy: Am I the only one who thinks Tex might have thought him up after watching Mickey Rooney's smart-alecky character in "Boys Town"? 'Cause, Screwy always reminded me of Rooney, and I always thought even his voice was a bit like Rooney's.

 

This is similar to how I always thought of another of MGM's cartoon shorts "stars", Barney Bear, might have been patterned after Wallace Beery, what with both often featured using the same expressions of frustration. i.e.,the hand slowly swiping down their faces, during and after some hapless event which has befallen them.

 

 

The Barney Bear-Wallace Beery comparison makes a lot of sense.

 

As far as Screwy Squirrel and Mickey Rooney are concerned, facially . . .

 

8ad0d0a1-c97b-41d8-ae47-db1d760751c5_zps    images9_zpscf0d8eab.jpg

 

I can't tell them apart.

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The Barney Bear-Wallace Beery comparison makes a lot of sense.

 

As far as Screwy Squirrel and Mickey Rooney are concerned, facially . . .

 

8ad0d0a1-c97b-41d8-ae47-db1d760751c5_zps    images9_zpscf0d8eab.jpg

 

I can't tell them apart.

 

 

LOL

 

So, you're sayin' you agree with me here, AND sayin' I AIN'T what squirrels(screwy of otherwise) eat then, RIGHT?!

 

(...okay okay..."less nutty" than the mean average anyway, right?!) ;)

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