Jump to content
 
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...

Losing Hope in TCM Selections


midnight08
 Share

Recommended Posts

     Maybe I'm in the minority but I'm losing hope that TCM will ever show more films from

Paramount, Universal and Fox from the 1930's. Several years ago there was a lot of discussion about a deal TCM made with Universal. I'm not sure of the details (or if this deal was ever totally agreed upon and finalized) but I assumed I'd begin to start seeing such stars as Clara Bow, Sylvia Sidney,

Nancy Carroll, Buddy Rogers and seeing more films of Gary Cooper, Mae West, WC Fields and Carole Lombard. There was a trickle of films that were shown and that was it. Yes, I know that TCM has shown some Mae West but they always show the same films. They've never shown "Every Day's A Holiday", "Goin To Town" or "Go West Young Man". They've shown some WC Fields movies but that was several years ago. And he made several films for Paramount before leaving for Universal in 1939.

 

I was also hoping that TCM would obtain more access to 20th Century Fox's collection. I was especially hoping to see some of the Fox films (pre 1936) which are rarities. They did show a few here and there but that's it. Lately the schedule is MGM, RKO and Warner Bros. Even when they have a star of the month such as Cary Grant or William Powell they show the movies easily obtained from the aforementioned studios.

 

As I watch the schedules month after month I lose hope that any of these rare gems will ever be

broadcast on TCM. I know that everyone has their own tastes and that many people are happy and satisfied with TCM's selections. I'm not saying that I'm unsatisfied; I just wish that they could get some of these film rarities from the other studios. Maybe the other studios have no interest in leasing them to TCM. I don't know. It's just very disillusioning.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think we are seeing cost cutting measures kicking in after news of jobs being cut on related networks. Same movies being repeated endlessly and few premieres outside of the "usual suspects".  I watch TCM rarely these days.......If I didnt have to work, I'd watch more of the daytime stuff as that's when the more interesting less seen films are scheduled.....

Link to comment
Share on other sites

     Maybe I'm in the minority but I'm losing hope that TCM will ever show more films from

Paramount, Universal and Fox from the 1930's. Several years ago there was a lot of discussion about a deal TCM made with Universal. I'm not sure of the details (or if this deal was ever totally agreed upon and finalized) but I assumed I'd begin to start seeing such stars as Clara Bow, Sylvia Sidney,

Nancy Carroll, Buddy Rogers and seeing more films of Gary Cooper, Mae West, WC Fields and Carole Lombard. There was a trickle of films that were shown and that was it. Yes, I know that TCM has shown some Mae West but they always show the same films. They've never shown "Every Day's A Holiday", "Goin To Town" or "Go West Young Man". They've shown some WC Fields movies but that was several years ago. And he made several films for Paramount before leaving for Universal in 1939.

 

I was also hoping that TCM would obtain more access to 20th Century Fox's collection. I was especially hoping to see some of the Fox films (pre 1936) which are rarities. They did show a few here and there but that's it. Lately the schedule is MGM, RKO and Warner Bros. Even when they have a star of the month such as Cary Grant or William Powell they show the movies easily obtained from the aforementioned studios.

 

As I watch the schedules month after month I lose hope that any of these rare gems will ever be

broadcast on TCM. I know that everyone has their own tastes and that many people are happy and satisfied with TCM's selections. I'm not saying that I'm unsatisfied; I just wish that they could get some of these film rarities from the other studios. Maybe the other studios have no interest in leasing them to TCM. I don't know. It's just very disillusioning.

 

Note that more and more stations are featuring studio-era movies.    So there is a lot more competition.   These stations show commercials so maybe they are willing to pay more to lease a film.   Also some are run by the studios like MOVIE-TV which features mostly Fox films.

 

With the budget cuts, I tend to agree;  there isn't much hope.    But we have seen TCM show movies like Laura (Fox film), that they didn't show before.   

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It was nice to see THE MAD GENIUS (1931) on TCM early this morning. I had to record it at 4 AM. This is a rare John Barrymore and Marian Marsh film, similar to SVENGALI. Somone said TCM has not shown this classic since 2008.

 

On another thread I mentioned seeing and recording OLYMPIA (Parts 1 and 2) and TRIUMPH OF THE WILL on TCM about 12 to 15 years ago, and I don't think they have been shown since then, although they are the two best and most famous documentaries of all time.

 

There is too much junk now from the 1970s-90s on TCM, including many films I avoided seeing in the theater in the 1970s-90s.

 

I first subscribed to TCM for the old Classic films, just as I subscribed to the early AMC channel for the same reason. For a brief span of a few years we had TWO Classic film channels to watch on Cable. Now we just have half of one.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I, too, remember that announcement going back, what, five years or so, when TCM had apparently made a deal with Universal by which they were going to show more Universal and Paramount films. Yes, they did show a few, but nothing to compare to the volume that the channel showed from Columbia.

 

Quite frankly, Paamount is a studio whose product excites and interests me considerably more than Columbia's so it has been a disppointment, to say the least. I envisioned more of the Parmaount stars (Lombard, Fields, Cooper, etc.) turning into semi-regulars from their Paramount years. But, acknowledging a film or two here or there, it never happened. Recently they did show Bob Hope's Cat and the Canary (a channel premiere?), as well as Ghost Breakers. There was also Lives of a Bengal Lancer a year ago. Nice to see, of course, but just not enough.

 

Yes, now with the recently announced cutbacks taking place, things are probably even worse for their acquiring new films from Universal or Paramount. But, with five years or so having passed, TCM had already had more than enough to time to already be showing us more from the studio era, apart from the usual MGM, RKO, Warners entries, and it didn't, for the most part, much happen.

 

To tell you the truth, I was long cynical of seeing much more in the way of new Paramount entires on TCM even before the cutbacks talk.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

also disappointed in lack of ANY new studio-era movies being shown.

though there are premieres in Imports, Underground and maybe a few silents, like many, it's not what I thought TCM's main focus used to be.

Keep it on most of the time as background, since I've seen most of what they air. Though daytime movies have alot more variety, primetime has become largely a bore.

:(

maybe just been watching too long and become jaded.  It's probably of more interest to new viewers.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I just perused the 31 Days of Oscar schedule in Now Playing. I've only chosen 3 movies to see for the entire month.

 

I always check premieres first - often Underground films- because I have an already huge DVD library or, if it's a really great movie have seen it enough times to recite the dialogue. 

 

My nose wrinkled when the "premieres" I did see turned out to be that Lord of The Ring Hobbit thingie. Ew. Really cheaply made styrofoam sets, bad acting, convoluted story....what's classic about that?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I just perused the 31 Days of Oscar schedule in Now Playing. I've only chosen 3 movies to see for the entire month.

 

I always check premieres first - often Underground films- because I have an already huge DVD library or, if it's a really great movie have seen it enough times to recite the dialogue. 

 

My nose wrinkled when the "premieres" I did see turned out to be that Lord of The Ring Hobbit thingie. Ew. Really cheaply made styrofoam sets, bad acting, convoluted story....what's classic about that?

 

 

Yeah, Oscar  month is probably my least watched month, so I dont expect I'll be tuning in much.....

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Fred: There is too much junk now from the 1970s-90s on TCM, including many films I avoided seeing in the theater in the 1970s-90s.

 

Well maybe during the 31 Days of Oscar, but as I have written soooo many times in the past, if you spent some time actually looking at the whole schedule for the other eleven months of the year there are well over 65% films made before 1960 on the schedule each month. Sometime that number is in the low 60% range and other times the number is well into the 70 to 80% range.

 

I can understand that folks like you prefer to sit here and complain and judge the channel without really doing much snooping around and really looking into the actual movies on the schedule. You'd be surprised at how short a time can be spent actually counting the number of films being shown each month and from which decade they are from.

 

But, a lot of folks like you don't want to do the research needed to actually see how many newer films ARE being shown, so what do you do? You scan the schedule ever so briefly and if you do see a few post 1970 films on the schedule, you start to claim the sky is falling because there are sooo many post 1970 films being shown. When in fact there are not that many.

 

 

Fred: I first subscribed to TCM for the old Classic films, just as I subscribed to the early AMC channel for the same reason. For a brief span of a few years we had TWO Classic film channels to watch on Cable. Now we just have half of one.

 

Maybe 7 to 8/10's of one Fred. Again, do the proper research and I am sure you will find 65% to 85% of the films being shown each month on TCM are from before 1960. But again. Are you going to do this? No, you'd rather sit here and just continue to spout nonsense about all of these 1970 to 1990 films being shown. Oh my.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's probably because those more recent films are shown in primetime. Most of the 30s films are delegated to daytime (unless its an overplayed "classic"..........) So it may seem like they are showing too many "recent" films.........

Link to comment
Share on other sites

     Even though TCM is continuing to show a large number of movies from the 1930's and 40's they are the same movies shown over and over again. And the majority of these 30's and 40's movies are shown in either the morning or the wee hours of the morning. When TCM showed "The Letter" with Jeannie Eagels for the first time (after several years of legal entanglements which kept this gem off the screen) they showed it at 6AM. This movie deserved a prime time slot with comments by Robert Osborne. Likewise with the 1931 version of "Waterloo Bridge". The first time TCM showed it was several years ago at 4:30AM. Why?

     A previous poster mentioned that the prime time TCM hours are so boring that they don't even bother watching anymore. I agree.  Oscar month is especially boring. That's the month which I watch the least.

     I do understand that TCM has to do some cost cutting measures and that's probably why we aren't seeing anything new in the way of premieres or rarities from the other studios vaults.

It's such a shame as there are so many rare gems fully restored sitting in mothballs for the occasional showing at a film festival. Why bother restoring these films if the majority of the viewers interested in these films don't have access to them? Most of us don't have the financial means to travel for these festivals. When I went to NYC in 2005 and 2006 to see the pre code festivals at Film Forum I could only afford to stay a few days each time.

     I wish I would have recorded more movies from the old AMC and from TCM years ago. I suppose I just thought that things would get better and better. Eventually though it reached its peak and is now on the downside. As Fred mentioned we had two wonderful classic cable movie stations at one time and now we have the equivalent of one half a station. It's sad.

    

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am going to jump into this thread. I am on the diving board right now. Hope I don't belly-flop...

 

What I am about to say will be a bit surprising, or may not be...

 

But I appreciate someone starting a thread like this. I do not like it when the people who always defend the channel chime in (that's how they got that 'Apol-----' word attached to them which they did not like). And what's worse is when the others who defend the channel either chime in too or click like on the posts meant to put the complainers in their place. Where is the democracy in that? We need to move away from the lynch mob mentality, where if someone complains, the others try to string him or her up from the nearest internet tree.

 

But I am not done. Because I haven't said the most surprising thing yet, which I think people would agree with if they reflect on the truth I am about to write...are you ready? Here goes:

 

The reason I appreciate a thread like this is not because I agree with it or because I feel everyone should pile on and bash the programmers. I appreciate this thread because it tells me what happens when someone takes a bleak or pessimistic view. For as much as there is woefully wrong with TCM's programming choices, there is much good to be found as well. Someone who started a thread like this has failed to see any good at all. That makes me grateful I can still see the good, even when I am offering up pointed criticisms and suggestions for improvements, without making excuses for the channel.

 

Please think about that. You know I am right about this. The ones who start chicken little threads like this are missing the overall mark...and the ones who come on and try to put them in their place are afraid it's true what chicken little is saying and to suppress that, in their zeal they craft witty and sometimes devious responses to keep those viewpoints down. Ultimately, when this happens, like it happens oh so often on the message boards, we wind up with circular arguments, bruised feelings and folks retreating to their respective corners without getting anything much accomplished.

 

This comment is my honest sincere opinion. Anyone who calls it an insult and tries to report it is probably being a bad sport. What I am saying is true. Let's recognize these patterns in our posting and move on to higher ground. Thank you!

 

I know, I know-- I am all wet. Can you please hand me a towel as I climb out of the pool? I look good in these Speedos, don't I?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Even though TCM is continuing to show a large number of movies from the 1930's and 40's they are the same movies shown over and over again. And the majority of these 30's and 40's movies are shown in either the morning or the wee hours of the morning. When TCM showed "The Letter" with Jeannie Eagels for the first time (after several years of legal entanglements which kept this gem off the screen) they showed it at 6AM. This movie deserved a prime time slot with comments by Robert Osborne. Likewise with the 1931 version of "Waterloo Bridge". The first time TCM showed it was several years ago at 4:30AM. Why?

A previous poster mentioned that the prime time TCM hours are so boring that they don't even bother watching anymore. I agree. Oscar month is especially boring. That's the month which I watch the least.

I do understand that TCM has to do some cost cutting measures and that's probably why we aren't seeing anything new in the way of premieres or rarities from the other studios vaults.

It's such a shame as there are so many rare gems fully restored sitting in mothballs for the occasional showing at a film festival. Why bother restoring these films if the majority of the viewers interested in these films don't have access to them? Most of us don't have the financial means to travel for these festivals. When I went to NYC in 2005 and 2006 to see the pre code festivals at Film Forum I could only afford to stay a few days each time.

I wish I would have recorded more movies from the old AMC and from TCM years ago. I suppose I just thought that things would get better and better. Eventually though it reached its peak and is now on the downside. As Fred mentioned we had two wonderful classic cable movie stations at one time and now we have the equivalent of one half a station. It's sad.

in response to your post: yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes but I don't entirely agree with the last sentence (i don't think it's gotten that bad yet.)

 

none the less I love you I love your style and thank you for everything you've said.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think that "Topbilled" is missing the point. I don't want to start an in depth discussion of this but the point of me starting this thread was to see if anyone else felt the way I do. There's no reason to try and dissect and analyze it. It's just my opinion; it's not good and it's not bad. I'm glad we have TCM as there's nothing else out there equivalent to it. I'm just disillusioned with the repetitiveness of the movies.

In the past TCM has had some wonderful presentations which I don't see anymore. I remember when they showed a number of restored films from the Library Of Congress including "The Trespasser" with Gloria Swanson and "The Valiant" with Paul Muni. It's a shame that TCM can't get curators from the LOC, George Eastman House and UCLA Film Archives on an occasional basis to bring a few of their restored films to TCM and discuss them with either Robert O. Or Ben. To try and analyze and dissect

this is overkill. There will be people who agree and people who don't. That's fine. I didn't start this thread to whine and look for other whiners.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think that "Topbilled" is missing the point. I don't want to start an in depth discussion of this but the point of me starting this thread was to see if anyone else felt the way I do. There's no reason to try and dissect and analyze it. It's just my opinion; it's not good and it's not bad. I'm glad we have TCM as there's nothing else out there equivalent to it. I'm just disillusioned with the repetitiveness of the movies.

In the past TCM has had some wonderful presentations which I don't see anymore. I remember when they showed a number of restored films from the Library Of Congress including "The Trespasser" with Gloria Swanson and "The Valiant" with Paul Muni. It's a shame that TCM can't get curators from the LOC, George Eastman House and UCLA Film Archives on an occasional basis to bring a few of their restored films to TCM and discuss them with either Robert O. Or Ben. To try and analyze and dissect

this is overkill. There will be people who agree and people who don't. That's fine. I didn't start this thread to whine and look for other whiners.

 

 

Agree. Cut the Essentials and Guest Programmers and have people from those institutions visit. IF ONLY! :(

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Agree. Cut the Essentials and Guest Programmers and have people from those institutions visit. IF ONLY! :(

in your last sentence when you say "visit": do you mean appear on a non paying basis?

 

if so I agree heartily, but it's entirely possible that that sort of thing isn't allowed because of TV Union/SAG/et cetera issues.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

in your last sentence when you say "visit": do you mean appear on a non paying basis?

 

if so I agree heartily, but it's entirely possible that that sort of thing isn't allowed because of TV Union/SAG/et cetera issues.

 

Well, I'm sure they arent going to appear for free. I assume all the guests are paid something for their appearance (travel fees and such). Plus the costs of the films.........

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If this helps to drive the point home for everybody (and get the thread locked in the process):

 

Matthew Broderick probably made upwards of $1,000 for doing that "job" he did introducing (dully, flatly, lifelessly) screwball comedies for the Friday night spotlight.

 

Think about that.

 

I would rather have more fresh moves per month than fresh actor intros. TCM should consider dumping all the costs of intros (I know, jaws dropping) if it means 25% fresh movies. Play the old intros as the movies haven't changed.

 

PS or they can always outsource the show South of the border, RO in a sombrero.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I would rather have more fresh moves per month than fresh actor intros. TCM should consider dumping all the costs of intros (I know, jaws dropping) if it means 25% fresh movies. Play the old intros as the movies haven't changed.

It might be fund to see Robert get younger and Ben grow his beard for the odd intro.  Good idea.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If this helps to drive the point home for everybody (and get the thread locked in the process):

 

Matthew Broderick probably made upwards of $1,000 for doing that "job" he did introducing (dully, flatly, lifelessly) screwball comedies for the Friday night spotlight.

 

Think about that.

 

 

WHAT A WASTE!!! Talk about cost cutting..........:(

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

© 2023 Turner Classic Movies Inc. A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Cookie Settings
×
×
  • Create New...