Sunday, August 29, 2010

Coming distractions: December 2010 on TCM

About a week ago, I was reading a post on a classic film weblog (and don’t ask me to remember which one it was because I forgot to bookmark it…yes, I suppose I could try and track it down but does it look like I’m not lazy? Update: Java Bean Rush at Java's Journey has tracked down the post--it's at The Vintage Vamp...) in which the author bemoaned that TCM’s August Summer Under the Stars promotion was their least favorite occasion at the Greatest Cable Channel Known to Mankind™ (ka-ching!) Her lack of enthusiasm was due to the fact that she felt Turner Classic Movies strays from its original mission of presenting classic films at that particular time, using Warren Beatty’s notorious Ishtar (1987) as Exhibit A in the landmark case of The People v. TCM. The gist of the essay was that if TCM didn’t mind its P’s and Q’s, it would morph into another American Movie Classics, which was once a proud outlet of vintage movies until it woke up one day, applied a heavy amount of lip rouge and ran down to the waterfront to see if the fleet was in.

First off, the odds of TCM transforming into what AMC has now become are remote because I simply don’t think there are enough Prilosec commercials for two classic movie cable channels. No, all seriousness aside—my problems with American Movie Classics began when they began interrupting their movies with commercial breaks (instead of presenting them before and after the feature...which they did do at one time) and editing both the language and content of newer films for those persons susceptible to spells on the fainting couch. I don’t have a problem with TCM showing newer movies—though I will admit, seeing Sleepaway Camp (1983) on the schedule made me do a double take—providing they blend them in with the older stuff for one simple reason: Turner Classic Movies shows them in letterbox form. As a person whose income has been curtailed somewhat over the last few years, I don’t buy as many movies on DVD as I once did—so it’s nice to have the option to record a favorite off TCM if it’s been scheduled, thus saving myself a few bucks. I’ve had this discussion with fellow movie lovers in the past, who argue that these newer movies get plenty of exposure on regular cable (HBO, Showtime, etc.)—but those channels are still in the dark ages when it comes to presenting movies properly. I won’t watch a movie unless it is in letterbox form. (Okay, that’s not entirely true—I sat through W. [2008] via Showtime on Demand last week—but when I did watch, I got all pouty about it.)

As for Ishtar—well, I feel this person’s pain…your time would be better spent watching Beatty’s appearances on The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis than that piece of offal. But I like to think of Turner Classic Movies as a big tent where movie fans of all stripes and persuasions are welcome, even those people who revel in bad movies. And like my esteemed blogging colleague Richard “Did I just hear the F-bomb?” Brooks at Cultureshark, sometimes it’s kind of deliciously naughty if TCM runs during its late-night hours a movie that would otherwise be inappropriate in the daytime …I get a mental picture of a young Bobby Osbo looking out the window to watch his folks pull out of the drive and then running to the record cabinet to listen to his dad’s Redd Foxx records. (The previous sentence is 100% accurate, provided you substitute “Bobby Osbo” with “the guy that writes this blog.”) Opposing viewpoints are, naturally, always welcome.

So with those editorial comments out of the way, a huge sweeping doff of the TDOY derby goes to my other esteemed colleague Laura at Laura’s Miscellaneous Musings, who was nice enough to promptly e-mail me and let me know that TCM has their tentative December 2010 schedule up. While there are a few cherce nuggets ready to be panned, the month as a whole excites me as much as the person who wrote off the SUTS celebration. This is because TCM’s Star of the Month is Mickey Rooney—a performer who’s the cinematic equivalent of nails-on-a-blackboard here at Castle Yesteryear.

Now, before Rooney’s defenders gather up their torches and pitchforks and storm the comments section—let me state for the record that I think the man is an amazing talent…his phenomenal career in movies, radio, television and theater is certainly a testament to that. But as a whole, he just has this obnoxiousness about him that tends to set my teeth on edge—to the point where…well, to be honest, I’d sit through Ishtar before watching one of the Mick’s vehicles. Okay, I need to come clean—I don’t mind the Andy Hardy films so much because there’s something delightfully corny about them and because they remind me a good deal of radio’s Henry Aldrich (actually, Rooney, Lewis Stone and Fay Holden did a syndicated radio version of The Hardy Family in the 1950s that’s not that bad a listen). TCM will, in fact, present a 24-hour marathon of Hardy films December 16th. (Oh, and when I took The Gambler Returns: The Luck of the Draw over to the ‘rents a couple of weeks ago so they could watch it, my mom thought Rooney’s cameo was the funniest thing in the movie. I should, however, point out in full disclosure that my mother sometimes drinks.)

So here’s the Rooney lineup:

Thursday, December 2
06:00am The Beast Of The City (1932)
07:30am Broadway To Hollywood (1933)
09:00am The Chief (1933)
10:15am The Life Of Jimmy Dolan (1933)
11:45am Blind Date (1934)
01:00pm Death On The Diamond (1934)
02:15pm Hide-Out (1934)
03:45pm Manhattan Melodrama (1934)
05:30pm Upper World (1934)
06:45pm Down The Stretch (1936)
08:00pm A Midsummer Night's Dream (1935)
10:30pm Ah, Wilderness! (1935)
12:15am Riffraff (1936)
02:00am The Devil Is A Sissy (1936)
04:00am Live, Love And Learn (1937)

Thursday, December 9
06:00am Little Lord Fauntleroy (1936)
08:00am Hold That Kiss (1938)
09:30am Lord Jeff (1938)
11:00am Love Is A Headache (1938)
12:30am A Yank At Eton (1942)
02:30am Killer McCoy (1947)
04:30am The Big Wheel (1949)
06:30am Quicksand (1950)
08:00am Thoroughbreds Don't Cry (1937)
09:30am Babes in Arms (1939)
11:15am Strike Up the Band (1940)
01:30am Babes on Broadway (1941)
03:45am Girl Crazy (1943)
05:30am Words And Music (1948)

Thursday, December 16
06:00am Andy Hardy Comes Home (1958)
07:30am Love Laughs At Andy Hardy (1946)
09:15am Andy Hardy's Blonde Trouble (1944)
11:15am The Courtship Of Andy Hardy (1942)
01:00pm Life Begins For Andy Hardy (1941)
02:45pm Andy Hardy's Private Secretary (1941)
04:30pm Andy Hardy Meets Debutante (1940)
06:15pm Judge Hardy And Son (1939)
08:00pm Andy Hardy Gets Spring Fever (1939)
09:45pm The Hardys Ride High (1939)
11:15pm Out West With The Hardys (1938)
12:45am Love Finds Andy Hardy (1938)
02:30am Judge Hardy's Children (1938)
04:00am You're Only Young Once (1938)
05:30am A Family Affair (1937)

Thursday, December 23
06:00am A Slight Case Of Larceny (1953)
07:30am All Ashore (1953)
09:00am The Extraordinary Seaman (1969)
10:30am Sound Off (1952)
12:00pm Operation Mad Ball (1957)
02:00pm Young Tom Edison (1940)
03:30pm National Velvet (1944)
06:00pm The Black Stallion (1979)
08:00pm The Human Comedy (1943)
10:15pm The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1939)
12:00am Boys' Town (1938)
02:00am Men Of Boys Town (1941)
04:00am Captains Courageous (1937)

Thursday, December 30
06:00am My Outlaw Brother (1951)
07:30am Drive a Crooked Road (1954)
09:00am The Last Mile (1959)
10:30am King of the Roaring 20s: The Story of Arnold Rothstein (1961)
12:30pm The Secret Invasion (1964)
02:30pm Ambush Bay (1966)
04:30pm It's A Mad Mad Mad Mad World (1963)
08:00pm The Strip (1951)
09:30pm Requiem For A Heavyweight (1962)
11:00pm Breakfast At Tiffany's (1961)
01:00pm The Comic (1969)
03:00am Pulp (1972)

Again, there’s some good stuff in there providing you know where to dig for it—I like Rooney’s performances in Requiem For A Heavyweight, The Secret Invasion and Killer McCoy, and films like The Beast of the City, The Life of Jimmy Dolan, Upper World and Manhattan Melodrama confine the Mick to a few scenes (sort of like that Python routine about the strawberry tart “not having that much rat in it”) but are definitely worth your while if you’ve not yet seen them. (The ones on the list that have definitely piqued my curiosity are Pulp and My Outlaw Brother—an oater featuring Roberts Preston and Stack and directed by comedy veteran Elliott Nugent!)

Highlights for the rest of the month (all times are EST, and are subject to change):

December 1, Wednesday – Hey, that Citizen Kane (1941) movie is on again at 11:15pm. People seem to like that one for some reason.

December 3, Friday – I couldn’t find the unifying theme here but there are a number of TDOY faves slated for today—Man Hunt (1941; 6am), Foreign Correspondent (1940; 8am), The Blue Dahlia (1946; 10:15am), The Big Clock (1948; 12 noon) and Kiss Me Deadly (1955; 5:45pm).

Later in the evening, the first of several Fridays of Christmas-themed films gets underway with Fitzwilly (1967) at 8pm followed by It Happened on 5th Avenue (1947; 10pm) and Susan Slept Here (1954; 12mid). On TCM Underground, they’ll show the existential car chase classic Vanishing Point (1971) at 2am and then follow up with one of Mark Hamill’s non-Star Wars vehicles (pardon the pun), Corvette Summer (1978).

December 4, Saturday – TCM’s Bowery Boys Saturdays continue at 10:30am with one of the weaker entries of the series, Jungle Gents (1954)…but things pick up the week after with Bowery to Bagdad (1955), one of the wildest of the Gorcey-Hall romps and then High Society (1955) on the 18th. (This is the one that got an Oscar nomination for Best Motion Picture Story because the Academy confused it with the Bing Crosby-Grace Kelly-Frank Sinatra musical of the same name. Scribes Edward Bernds and Elwood Ullman “graciously and voluntarily declined the nomination” …the saps. I forget which movie it is—probably Spy Chasers, which followed Society—but Huntz Hall has a beauty of an aside to the audience when he cracks that this film is a shoo-in for another nomination.) Due to a day of Yuletide-themed films, however, there will be no Bowery Boys movie on the 25th.

TCM’s Essentials will show the 1948 Livvy de Havilland classic The Snake Pit (1948) at 8pm, thereby ushering in a tribute to the film’s director, Anatole Litvak, with a mini-festival of his oeuvre that includes Confessions Of A Nazi Spy (1939; 10pm), The Long Night (1947; 12mid), Act of Love (1953; 2am) and Out Of The Fog (1941; 4am).

December 5, Sunday – TCM’s Silent Sunday Nights feature is Mare Nostrum (1926), directed by the woefully neglected Rex Ingram…and since I’ve not seen it, I’ll definitely fire up the recorder to capture a copy. Later that evening, the channel will run a rarity that I’ve only seen turn up on the Fox Movie Channel (which I have to pay extra for): the 1933 fairy tale Zoo in Budapest, with Loretta Young and Gene Raymond in one of his better showcases.

December 6, Monday – My Mama done told me…the channel spends a day with jazz/blues-themed films beginning with Blues in the Night (1941) at 7:30am, followed by Paris Blues (1961; 9:30am), Young Man With a Horn (1950; 11:30am), All Night Long (1962; 1:30pm) and Southern Crossing (1981; 3:15pm). TCM will then roll out a new documentary entitled Dave Brubeck: In His Own Sweet Way at 5:00pm…sort of an unusual time to introduce something new, but hey—I guess that’s why they call it “the blues.”

Come evening, the channel picks up with its Moguls and Movie Stars: A History of Hollywood documentary series—this month’s schedule:

Episode Six: Attack of the Little Screens
December 6 at 8pm and 11pm
December 8 at 10pm
December 11 at 12noon
December 13 at 7pm

Episode Seven: Fade Out, Fade In
December 13 at 8pm and 11pm
December 15 at 10pm
December 18 at 12noon

Again, I’m guessing that the remainder of the series will be a holding pattern until the completion of the Christmas holidays.

December 7, Tuesday – TCM commemorates the 69th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor with a lineup that kicks off with Submarine Raider (1942) at 6:15am, followed by Air Force (1943; 7:30am), From Here To Eternity (1953l 9:45am), In Harm's Way (1965; 11:45am), Flying Leathernecks (1951; 2:45pm), Beachhead (1954; 4:30pm) and Three Came Home (1950; 6pm).

Nightfall brings a tribute to actress Dorothy Malone, and I’m particularly pumped to see Warlock (1959) kick things off at 8pm—a Western favorite of mine that, once again, stays pretty much on FMC’s turf. (This reminds me of my halcyon days at Ballbuster Blockbuster Video, when we’d have fanboys come into the store requesting the 1989 film of the same name with Julien Sands…and I’d have to explain to the other clerks time and time again that what we had on hand was the Henry Fonda-Richard Widmark western from thirty years earlier...”they made movies back then?”) After Warlock, it’s The Last Voyage (1960; 10:15pm), The Fast and the Furious (1954; 12noon), Convicted (1950; 1:30am), Tension At Table Rock (1956; 3:15am) and Pushover (1954; 5:00am). (And if anyone’s up for a Peyton Place marathon at my house, I’ll be in my office until six.)

December 8, Wednesday – TCM splits the day into two halves: first, a trio of Olivia de Havilland films in the morning hours—To Each His Own (1946; 6:30am), Devotion (1946; 8:45am) and The Heiress (1949; 10:45am)—and then a Natalie Wood tribute in the afternoon with Cash McCall (1960; 12:45pm), West Side Story (1961; 2:30pm) and Splendor In The Grass (1961; 5:15pm). (I’ll say this for the channel—they are certainly getting their money’s worth from To Each His Own…I remember the first time I saw that one, on AMC’s first Film Preservation Festival. Good times…good times…back before Prilosec was invented, of course.)

December 10, Friday – December’s Christmas-themed movies on Friday night continue with A Christmas Carol (1938; 8:00pm), Scrooge (1970; 9:30pm) and The Man Who Came to Dinner (1942; 11:30pm). Then TCM Underground gets into the act with…and seriously, folks, this is what makes Turner Classic Movies the greatness that it is…a new documentary entitled The Wonder World of K. Gordon Murray. Connoisseurs of cinema horrible know that Murray was the impresario behind such odious fromage as Shanty Tramp (1967), Savages From Hell (1968), The Daredevil (1972) and Thunder County (1974)—but his specialty was promoting really terrible kid’s movies like Santa’s Enchanted Village (1964) and Santa’s Magic Kingdom (1966) and making a damn good living doing so. (He got into a little trouble with the Internal Revenue boys towards the end of his life, and they put a lien on most of his oeuvre, so many of those movies were out of circulation.) After Wonder World, TCM will show the Mexican cheapie classic Santa Claus (1959)—which Murray distributed and provided the narration in its dubbed version.

December 11, Saturday – TCM's Essentials scheduling of the Christmas perennial Meet Me in St. Louis (1944) is a cue to crank up the Vincente Minnelli film festival, which will include The Clock (1945; 11pm), The Pirate (1948; 12:45am), An American in Paris (1951; 3:30am) and Gigi (1958; 5:30am). Two showings of a new Private Screenings (with Liza Minnelli as interviewee) will be sprinkled between these films (at 10pm and 2:30am) in plenty of time for you to head out to the kitchen for a snack…and then at 7:30am, enjoy a bit of breakfast as TCM repeats Minnelli on Minnelli: Lisa Remembers Vincente (1987). (You’d think they would have already covered all that in the Private Screenings interview.)

December 12, Sunday – Clifton Webb introduced what some consider to be his signature role of Lynn Belvedere in the 1948 comedy Sitting Pretty, which proved to be such a phenomenal draw at the box office that they issued a pair of follow-ups that will receive the TCM treatment beginning at 8pm with Mr. Belvedere Goes to College (1949). Mr. Belvedere Rings the Bell (1951) will follow at 9:30pm. TCM’s Silent Sunday Nights has Intolerance (1916) scheduled at 12:45am, director D.W. Griffith’s apology for The Birth of a Nation (1915).

December 14, Tuesday – TCM throws one of my favorite actresses—Lee Remick—a birthday bash starting at 7:15am with The Running Man (1963), and that’s followed by Experiment in Terror (1962) at 9—so if you didn’t get the opportunity to grab this when it was on DVD, set the TiVo because the disc is OOP. Days of Wine and Roses (1962) and Baby the Rain Must Fall (1965) round out the day at 11:15am and 1:15pm, respectively.

Then for those of you who spent Saturday Christmas shopping or whatever, TCM will give you the opportunity to spend another interminable hour with Liza (with a “Z”) with repeats of that Private Screenings interview at 8pm and 3am. (What is this—all Liza, all the time?) It’s part of LizaFest 2010, which will commence at 9pm with Cabaret (1972) and will also include A Matter of Time (1976; 11:15pm) and Stepping Out (1991; 1am)—boy, they really had to scrape to put this one together, didn’t they? (Sometimes TCM reminds me of a video store in that they don’t have access to the really important movies and they have to make do with what’s left on the shelf…like somebody rented out The Sterile Cuckoo [1969] or Tell Me That You Love Me, Junie Moon [1970] ahead of time.) If you’re still awake by 4am, TCM will show Madame Bovary (1949), one of my favorite films directed by Liza’s pop, and then The Bad and the Beautiful (1952) and Home From The Hill (1960) follow at 6am and 8am, respectively.

December 17, Friday – Another evening of Christmas cheer with Holiday Affair (1949) at 8pm, followed by In The Good Old Summertime (1949; 9:30pm—by the way, Liza’s in this one, too) and Little Women (1949; 11:30pm). TCM Underground will show one of my favorite Yuletide-themed flicks at 2am with Black Christmas (1974; aka Silent Night, Evil Night—Margot Kidder is great as a bitchy sorority sister) and then follow that one up with Santa Claus Conquers the Martians (1964) which, as World O’Crap chronicler and MST3K historian Scott C. will no doubt likely point out, was the recipient of Joel and the ‘bots’ taunting in the show’s fourth season.

December 18, Saturday – TCM's Essentials rolls out Meet John Doe (1941) at 8pm, then follows it with a Gary Cooper festival that features Mr. Deeds Goes to Town (1936; 10:15pm), Friendly Persuasion (1956; 12:15am), Along Came Jones (1945; 2:45am) and Task Force (1949; 4:30am).

December 19, Sunday – In an example of the kinds of recent movies I’m only too happy to see shown on TCM (and letterboxed), the channel learns that Grease (1978) is the word at 8pm…and then at 10, “Look at me, I’m Sandra Dee”—A Summer Place (1959) gets shown. Then Silent Sunday Nights unspools Cecil B. DeMille’s The King of Kings (1927) at 12:15am, which I can’t recommend highly enough—a much better movie than the 1961 remake (Nick Ray’s direction not withstanding) which TCM will run on Christmas Day (5pm) and which one wag once dubbed “I Was a Teenage Jesus.”

December 22, Wednesday – It just wouldn’t be Christmas without Marion Robert Morrison, pilgrims. John Wayne fans will be able to go back for seconds and thirds with a Duke-a-palooza that features Rio Lobo (1970; 6am), Fort Apache (1948; 8am), She Wore A Yellow Ribbon (1949; 10:15am), Rio Grande (1950; 12noon), The Searchers (1956; 1:45pm), 3 Godfathers (1948; 3:45pm), The Sons of Katie Elder (1965; 5:45pm), True Grit (1969; 8pm), Rio Bravo (1959; 10:15pm), McLintock! (1963; 12:45pm), Big Jake (1971; 3am) and The Man From Monterey (1933; 5am). (Okay, maybe TCM is starting to look a little like AMC.)

December 24, Friday – You’d better watch out…you’d better not cry. Here’s the Christmas Eve/Day lineup of films on Turner Classic Movies for 2010:

06:00am Beyond Tomorrow (1940)
07:30am Bundle Of Joy (1956)
09:15am Tenth Avenue Angel (1948)
10:30am Holiday Affair (1949)
12:00pm It Happened on 5th Avenue (1947)
02:00pm The Man Who Came to Dinner (1942)
04:00pm In The Good Old Summertime (1949)
06:00pm Scrooge (1970)
08:00pm The Bishop's Wife (1947)
10:00pm Make Way For Tomorrow (1937)
12:00am Remember the Night (1940)
02:00am Meet Me In St. Louis (1944)
04:00am Bell Book and Candle (1959)

December 25, Saturday
06:00am Little Women (1933)
08:00am The Shop Around The Corner (1940)
10:00am Susan Slept Here (1954)
11:45am A Christmas Carol (1938)
01:00am Ben-Hur (1959)
05:00am King of Kings (1961)

December 26, Sunday – Two Christmases back, TCM premiered a nice little documentary entitled The Age of Believing: The Disney Live Action Classics—which I chatted up in this post—and it’s to be the cornerstone (showing at 6:30pm) of a day that will feature many of the beloved classics from ol’ Uncle Walt beginning at 6:30am with Old Yeller (1957) and then followed by Pollyanna (1960; 8am), The Apple Dumpling Gang (1975; 10:15am), Swiss Family Robinson (1960; 12noon), The Love Bug (1968; 2:15pm), The Parent Trap (1961; 4:15pm), Escape to Witch Mountain (1975; 8pm) and Return From Witch Mountain (1978; 10pm). Silent Sunday Nights will show the 1925 version of The Wizard of Oz at midnight—a film that The Silent Clowns author Walter Kerr once described as "a film that ought to have bankrupted everyone associated with it." (I take it he didn't like the movie.)

December 28, Tuesday – Celebrate Lew Ayres’ natal anniversary with an impressive lineup of films that includes half-a-dozen of the Dr. Kildare vehicles: Young Dr. Kildare (1938; 7:15am), Calling Dr. Kildare (1939; 8:45am), The Secret Of Dr. Kildare (1939; 10:15am), Dr. Kildare's Strange Case (1940; 11:45am), Dr. Kildare Goes Home (1940; 1:15pm) and Dr. Kildare's Crisis (1940; 2:45pm). Two of Ayres’ best non-Kildare showcases follow at 4pm with Holiday (1938) and Johnny Belinda (1948) at 5:45.

TCM then sets aside the evening hours for a nice little tribute to the immortal Will Rogers—with a number of films that I will definitely be snatching because I never got around to purchasing the second DVD box set that Fox Home Video released in December 2006. Scheduled are A Connecticut Yankee (1931; 8pm), Doctor Bull (1933; 10pm), Handy Andy (1934; 11:30pm), In Old Kentucky (1935; 1am), Life Begins at Forty (1935; 2:30am), Too Busy to Work (1932; 4am) and Down to Earth (1932; 5:15am).

December 29, Wednesday – TCM had this evening of Ealing comedies—anchored by a 2002 documentary, Forever Ealing, which will air at 9:30pm—on the schedule several months back but they shelved it for one of their tributes to a passing film star…I believe it was Dennis Hopper. So it’s nice to see this resurrected—with showings of classics like The Lavender Hill Mob (1951; 8pm), The Man in the White Suit (1951; 10:30pm), The Ladykillers (1955; 12mid) and Kind Hearts and Coronets (1949; 1:45am). (They’re going to wind up the evening with The Bells Go Down [1943]—an early Ealing WW2 drama that seems a bit out of sync with what preceded it…but it does feature music hall great Tommy “You lucky people!” Trinder in a serious role.)

December 31, Wednesday – TCM rings 2011 with a festival featuring two of classic film’s favorites—the daylight hours will highlight some of Cary Grant’s oeuvre, including Bringing Up Baby (1938; 6am), My Favorite Wife (1940; 8am), The Philadelphia Story (1940; 9:30am), Penny Serenade (1941; 11:30am), Arsenic And Old Lace (1944; 1:45pm), The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer (1947; 3:45pm) and North By Northwest (1959; 5:30pm).

Then as the night takes shape and the champagne flows freely—Groucho, Harpo, Chico and Zeppo Marz provide the laughs with Animal Crackers (1930; 8pm), Monkey Business (1931; 9:45pm), Horse Feathers (1932; 11:15pm), Duck Soup (1933; 12:30am), A Night at the Opera (1935; 1:45am) and A Day At The Races (1937; 3:30am). (If I wind up at the ‘rents for New Year’s—a more-than-likely situation—I’m not entirely certain the Marx Brothers are going to be welcome as far as Mater and Pater are concerned. But we shall see…)

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Amanda said...

Argh, another month down the crapper on TCM. Why oh why must we suffer through a Mickey Rooney fest? I'm sure he's a nice guy, but his films are just nails on a chalkboard to me.

Hal said...

One good thing about the Rooney-thon: I haven't seen THE COMIC (1969) on TV at all in a long, long time, and needless to say it isn't on DVD. The second-best of the collaborations between Dick Van Dyke and Carl Reiner. It'll make the Horn Section now that I can finally DVR it.

Stacia said...

The way you feel about Rooney month is the way I felt about Henry Fonda day. Pfft.

I'm glad you posted this for a few reasons. First, "Fitzwilly", which I will remember this year! I've seen parts of it on TCM twice, because it surprised me both times, and got a copy from one of those root peg sources you're always talking about. Finally, my own copy!

Also, about 10% of my TCM email reminders show up as notes telling me the movie has been canceled. Such was the case with "Paid" on next Wednesday, and then TCM's schedule was down (while updating, I suppose) and I couldn't find out if they were lying again. Your post reminded me to check. SPOILER: Yes, TCM was lying, "Paid" is on as scheduled.

Java Bean Rush said...

*I don't think this is the blog you were talking about, but The Vintage Vamp bemoaned the constant post-1950s lineup on TCM.
*"...I like to think of Turner Classic Movies as a big tent where movie fans of all stripes and persuasions are welcome, even those people who revel in bad movies." - Ivan

I like the egalitarian idea of it, but in reality it just messes up things. You can get crap on any channel; why bring it to TCM? Just my $0.02.
*"...Mickey Rooney—a performer who’s the cinematic equivalent of nails-on-a-blackboard here at Castle Yesteryear." - Ivan

I enjoy Rooney's performances (especially when he looks adoringly at Judy Garland), and still you just made me laugh.
*"....American Movie Classics, which was once a proud outlet of vintage movies until it woke up one day, applied a heavy amount of lip rouge and ran down to the waterfront to see if the fleet was in." - Ivan

That has got to be the best description of AMC's transformation that I've ever read. I'm quoting you on my blog, if you don't mind.

Ivan G. Shreve, Jr. said...

I don't think this is the blog you were talking about, but The Vintage Vamp bemoaned the constant post-1950s lineup on TCM.

It is the post I was referring to--thanks ever so, Java, for doing the legwork.

I like the egalitarian idea of it, but in reality it just messes up things. You can get crap on any channel; why bring it to TCM? Just my $0.02.

Hey, I don't shy away from people kicking in a pair of coppers and expressing their opinion. My position is simply: you can get crap on any channel, but on TCM the crap is letterboxed.

That has got to be the best description of AMC's transformation that I've ever read. I'm quoting you on my blog, if you don't mind.

Only if you don't mind that I'm now blushing from head to toe. :-)