Thursday, March 04, 2010

TCM in March: Highlights

The Turner Classic Movies March schedule officially begins today, with the 31 Days of Oscar Festival having concluded last night.

Yesterday I posted about the many wonderful movies being aired this month during the tribute to TCM's Star of the Month, Ginger Rogers. Now here's a look at some of the other interesting titles being shown in March...

...THE ROMANCE OF ROSY RIDGE (1947), a lovely piece of post-Civil War Americana starring Janet Leigh and Van Johnson, is on tomorrow, March 5th. It has beautiful performances by the entire cast, including Leigh in her very first film role. Another highly regarded slice of Americana I haven't seen yet, Joel McCrea's STARS IN MY CROWN (1950), is also on tomorrow. And I love the Margaret O'Brien version of THE SECRET GARDEN (1949).

...Tomorrow evening, March 5th, is a night of airline disaster movies, including THE CROWDED SKY (1960) and ZERO HOUR! (1957). A few weeks ago TCM blogger Morlock Jeff previewed Gary Merrill and Nancy Davis (Reagan) in CRASH LANDING (1958). The satire AIRPLANE! is also being shown tomorrow evening, but I have a feeling watching the originals will provide just as much amusement!

...THE GORGEOUS HUSSY (1936) has an amazing cast: Joan Crawford, Robert Taylor, Franchot Tone, Melvyn Douglas, and James Stewart, plus a bunch of great character actors headed by Lionel Barrymore and Gene Lockhart. I taped this a while ago and need to catch up with it soon. It's on March 7th.

...March 8th is a mixture of Vincente Minnelli and Cyd Charisse movies, including THE BAD AND THE BEAUTIFUL (1952), THE STORY OF THREE LOVES (1953), THE BAND WAGON (1953), BRIGADOON (1954), MEET ME IN LAS VEGAS (1956), and SILK STOCKINGS (1957). March 8th is Cyd Charisse's birthday. Great entertainment all day long!

...TCM celebrates the centennial of Akira Kurosawa's birth on four evenings this month, beginning March 9th. At this point his films aren't my kind of thing, but they appeal greatly to my oldest daughter, who has studied Japan and loves adventure, mythology, and the like. When she read the description of THRONE OF BLOOD (1957) -- "Spurred by his wife and a witch's prediction, a samurai murders his lord to steal the throne" -- her immediate reaction was "Yes, please!"

...On March 10th TWO SISTERS FROM BOSTON (1946) will be shown, starring the late Kathryn Grayson. June Allyson and Peter Lawford costar.

...I absolutely love that TCM is celebrating George Brent's birthday with a 10-film tribute on March 15th. The day starts with MISS PINKERTON (1932), which I haven't seen; I'll also be recording DESIRABLE (1934) with Jean Muir and Verree Teasdale, and GOD'S COUNTRY AND THE WOMAN (1936) with Beverly Roberts. FEMALE (1933), costarring Brent's then-wife, Ruth Chatterton, is one of the best pre-Code movies ever. Also shown that day: another Chatterton film, LILLY TURNER (1933); BABY FACE (1932) with Barbara Stanwyck; HOUSEWIFE (1934) with Ann Dvorak and Bette Davis; the highly regarded LIVING ON VELVET (1935) with Kay Francis; another Francis film, THE KEYHOLE (1933); and the classic DARK VICTORY (1939).

...March 16th three pre-Code films are being shown starring actress Constance Cummings (HAUNTED HONEYMOON): THE GUILTY GENERATION (1931), THE BIG TIMER (1932), and THE MIND READER (1933). Warren William stars in the latter film. Immediately following THE MIND READER is a film on the same topic, THE CLAIRVOYANT (1935), starring Claude Rains and Fay Wray. Only on TCM!

...St. Patrick's Day titles include THE IRISH IN US (1935), THREE CHEERS FOR THE IRISH (1940), and Dennis Morgan in MY WILD IRISH ROSE (1947).

...March 19th are a few Las Vegas and gambling themed films, including THE LAS VEGAS STORY (1952), MEET ME IN LAS VEGAS (1956), and ANY NUMBER CAN PLAY (1949). The latter stars Clark Gable and Alexis Smith. (What, no VIVA LAS VEGAS?!)

...TIME LIMIT (1957), shown on March 22nd, stars Richard Widmark and June Lockhart and was directed by Karl Malden. The names alone sound interesting.

...I really enjoyed the Cavalry Western AMBUSH (1950), starring Robert Taylor and Arlene Dahl. It's being shown on March 26th.

...I've never seen LETTER FROM AN UNKNOWN WOMAN (1948), but have been curious about it since reading a description in Lawrence Quirk's THE GREAT ROMANTIC FILMS years ago. It airs March 27th, along with four other films starring Louis Jourdan.

...March 30th is dedicated to eight films with "Blue" in the title, including the messed-up but fascinating BLUES IN THE NIGHT (1941); THE BLUE GARDENIA (1953), a mystery with Richard Conte and Anne Baxter; and the excellent THE BLUE DAHLIA (1946), one of Alan Ladd and Veronica Lake's teamings, which has great location shooting at the Miramar Hotel.

...FREE AND EASY (1941) is the kind of little movie I love being able to discover via TCM; it stars Ruth Hussey and Bob Cummings, was directed by George Sidney, and runs less than an hour! It's being shown on March 31st.

This is only the tip of the iceberg for great movies airing on Turner Classic Movies in March. Visit the TCM website for the schedule.

For more March viewing suggestions, check out The Self-Styled Siren.


Blogger Sally said...

Such an exciting lineup! (I might just be excited because I finally have TCM - yay!) Thank you for the reminders - I really want to see "Meet Me in Las Vegas" and "Two Sisters from Boston."

8:08 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

Enjoy having TCM, Sally! The longer I have it, the more I appreciate it.

LAS VEGAS and BOSTON are both fun, hope you like them.

Best wishes,

8:30 PM  
Blogger Tom said...

Oh, I love Stars in My Crown. Great film.

8:54 PM  
Blogger mel said...

You lucky people in the USA!

On Thursday, March 18 at 1.45 p.m. Eastern time, TCM has scheduled the rare Jeanette MacDonald and Nelson Eddy film "I Married An Angel" with music by Rodgers and Hart.

I've never seen it. If I had the opportunity, I wouldn't miss it for the world.

9:15 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

STARS IN MY CROWN is high on my "to see" list Tom. Joel McCrea in a great movie, that's a wonderful combination. :)

I love Jeanette too, Mel! I've seen many MacDonald-Eddy films but not that one.

Best wishes,

9:26 PM  

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