Saturday, August 07, 2010

TCM in August: Summer Under the Stars

It's Summer Under the Stars month on Turner Classic Movies! There are dozens of great movies on the schedule.

Computer gremlins prevented me from posting this last weekend, but there's still a lot of August's a preview of some of this month's interesting titles.

...Tuesday, August 10th, is Kathryn Grayson Day. I'll be recording SO THIS IS LOVE (1953), one of the few Grayson films I've yet to see. There are 11 other Grayson films airing this date, including favorites such as SEVEN SWEETHEARTS (1942), ANCHORS AWEIGH (1945), TWO SISTERS FROM BOSTON (1946), SHOW BOAT (1951), LOVELY TO LOOK AT (1952), and KISS ME KATE (1953). For those who have never seen these films, it's a wonderful opportunity to catch up, and for others, it's a chance to revisit some of the best of MGM.

...Thursday the 12th there's a marvelous lineup of Norma Shearer films, including all five of her films with Robert Montgomery. My favorite of their movies is THEIR OWN DESIRE (1929); although I have a copy on tape, I can't resist recording it anew every time it shows up in my DVR schedule. The swimming pool scene filmed at the Norconian Resort is marvelous.

...Friday the 13th is a lucky day for fans of the great Robert Ryan. I'm interested in checking out MEN IN WAR (1957), a Korean War film directed by Anthony Mann. Classics such as CROSSFIRE (1947), ACT OF VIOLENCE (1949), and THE SET-UP (1949) are also on the schedule.

...August 14th is the day I'm most excited about this month: Gene Tierney Day. I've wanted to see NEVER LET ME GO (1953), costarring Clark Gable, for a long time. There are a couple other early Tierney films I've never seen on that date, THE SHANGHAI GESTURE (1941) and SUNDOWN (1941). There are some terrific films airing, including LEAVE HER TO HEAVEN (1945), which has some of the finest Technicolor photography of all time. Other titles include DRAGONWYCK (1946), THAT WONDERFUL URGE (1948), CLOSE TO MY HEART (1950), and THE MATING SEASON (1951).

...August 15th is Margaret O'Brien's day. I've seen most of the films on the schedule; she appeared in quite a string of good or excellent films during the '40s. JOURNEY FOR MARGARET (1942) is an underrated WWII film about orphans of the London Blitz, costarring Robert Young and Laraine Day. OUR VINES HAVE TENDER GRAPES (1945) is a particularly fine yet relatively unknown piece of Americana, with Margaret playing the child of Norwegian-American farmers Edward G. Robinson and Agnes Moorehead. THE CANTERVILLE GHOST (1944), MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS (1944), LITTLE WOMEN (1949), and THE SECRET GARDEN (1949) are other top picks on the schedule.

...I'm intrigued by Robert Stack's date on the schedule, the 16th, as I'm unfamiliar with so many of the titles. I'll be recording several to check them out, including CONQUEST OF COCHISE, costarring John Hodiak along with Stack's BULLFIGHTER AND THE LADY (1951) costar, Joy Page. The Frank Borzage film THE MORTAL STORM (1940), with James Stewart, Margaret Sullavan, and Robert Young, has a fine reputation. And I've always been fond of A DATE WITH JUDY (1948), an MGM musical starring Jane Powell and Elizabeth Taylor, photographed in candybox Technicolor.

...Maureen O'Hara Day on the 17th leads off with DANCE, GIRL, DANCE (1940), which I just reviewed a couple of weeks ago. THE LONG GRAY LINE (1955) and THE BLACK SWAN (1942), both costarring Tyrone Power, are just a couple of the interesting titles airing this date. Fans of Douglas Fairbanks Jr. -- and there are a lot of us -- will want to see SINBAD THE SAILOR (1947).

...I'm curious about ONE MORE TOMORROW on Ann Sheridan Day, August 18th. It costars the perennial team of Dennis Morgan and Jack Carson. TORRID ZONE (1940) is a particularly fun film airing this date.

...I'll be recording the early Walter Pidgeon films SWEET KITTY BELLAIRS (1930) and THE HOT HEIRESS (1931) on the 19th, as well as THE SHOPWORN ANGEL (1938), with James Stewart and Margaret Sullavan. The day will also feature Fritz Lang's MAN HUNT (1941) and four of Pidgeon's films with Greer Garson, including the classic WWII film MRS. MINIVER (1942).

...I've yet to see UNDERCURRENT (1946), airing on Katharine Hepburn's day on the 20th. Robert Taylor and Robert Mitchum in the same film?! Sounds good to me. It was directed by Vincente Minnelli.

...I found that UNTIL THEY SAIL (1957) stayed with me long after I saw it, especially the final scenes with Joan Fontaine's character. It's the story of four sisters in WWII New Zealand, with Jean Simmons, Piper Laurie, and Sandra Dee playing Fontaine's siblings. Paul Newman is a man who enters their lives. 11 other Newman films will be shown on the 21st.

...On the 22nd I'm looking forward to recording DUNKIRK (1958) on John Mills Day. (Walter Lord's THE MIRACLE OF DUNKIRK is a very fine book on the subject.) Disney's SWISS FAMILY ROBINSON (1960) is among the other choice picks on this day.

...I've never seen THE WHEELER DEALERS (1963), although it stars one of my favorite actors, James Garner. It's on Lee Remick's day on the 26th.

...PRINCESS O'ROURKE (1943) is one of my favorites airing on Olivia deHavilland's date on the calendar, August 27th.

...You can't go wrong with MY DARLING CLEMENTINE (1946) on August 29th, Henry Fonda Day. It's a piece of great American art.

These are just a few of my old favorites as well as new-to-me titles I'm looking forward to seeing for the first time. I'd love to hear about movies others are looking forward to seeing this month!

Happy viewing!


Blogger panavia999 said...

Be sure to have a gin sling on hand when watching Shanghai Gesture. It's so stylish and wierd, I think it's good to have a drink while watching. It smacks of censorship, you just know they left out all kinds of melodramatic sleaze. Highly recommended.

4:31 PM  

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