Saturday, March 03, 2012

TCM in March: Highlights

TCM's 31 Days of Oscar Festival concluded yesterday, so it's time to take a look at a few of the most interesting titles airing on Turner Classic Movies in March!

...BOMBSHELL (1933), with Jean Harlow playing a movie star, provides a fun peek at studio life in the '30s. It airs March 5th.

...The pre-Code lineup on Tuesday, March 6th, includes Ann Dvorak in THE STRANGE LOVE OF MOLLY LOUVAIN (1932), which I've been wanting to see for a while now.

...The treasure of the month is HISTORY IS MADE AT NIGHT (1937), starring Jean Arthur and Charles Boyer. Watch it and try to decide if it's a romantic comedy, a heart-tugging melodrama, a disaster film -- or all three! It's not to be missed. Be sure to set your DVR on March 6th -- this one's a keeper.

...One of the unexpected pleasures at last year's Noir City festival was THE HUNTED (1948), a film noir starring Preston Foster and the ice skater Belita. Another of Belita's film noir titles, SUSPENSE (1946), airs on March 7th. It costars Barry Sullivan and Bonita Granville.

...Speaking of Preston Foster, I'm very curious to see TWICE BLESSED (1945) on March 9th. Foster costars with Gail Patrick as parents of twins (Lee and Lyn Wilde) trying to reunite their divorced parents. It sounds a lot like THE PARENT TRAP (1961)!

...On March 10th TCM will be showing several of Clifton Webb's films for 20th Century-Fox, including two TCM premieres, FOR HEAVEN'S SAKE (1950) and MISTER SCOUTMASTER (1953). FOR HEAVEN'S SAKE is a title I fondly remember from multiple childhood TV viewings; it's a fantasy about an angel looking for the right parents for an unborn baby. It costars Robert Cummings, Joan Bennett, and Edmund Gwenn. I've never seen MISTER SCOUTMASTER and particularly look forward to it as one of the costars is Frances Dee, whose work I admire more each time I see one of her films.

...Dolores Hart has been in the news of late, due to the Oscar-nominated documentary on her life as a nun, GOD IS THE BIGGER ELVIS (2011). Her film WHERE THE BOYS ARE (1960), the quintessential "spring break" movie, airs on March 11th. This most enjoyable film costars Paula Prentiss, Jim Hutton, George Hamilton, Connie Francis, Frank Gorshin, and Yvette Mimieux.

...There's a terrific lineup of William Wellman films on March 12th. I'll be recording CENTRAL AIRPORT (1931), which I've never seen. I'm particularly fond of THE PURCHASE PRICE (1932), in which Barbara Stanwyck plays the mail order bride of North Dakota farmer George Brent.

...I'm intrigued by HOTEL RESERVE (1946), a spy thriller starring James Mason. It airs March 13th. It's part of a day of "hotel" films which also includes HOLLYWOOD HOTEL (1937). HOLLYWOOD HOTEL isn't one of Busby Berkeley's best films, but it's still very much worth taking a look. Dick Powell and Rosemary Lane are utterly charming singing "I'm a Fish Out of Water."

...An evening of John Ford films on March 15th includes one of my all-time favorite Ford films, DRUMS ALONG THE MOHAWK (1939). This 20th Century-Fox film stars Henry Fonda and Claudette Colbert, with sterling support from Edna May Oliver and Ward Bond. Like the previously mentioned FOR HEAVEN'S SAKE, I saw DRUMS ALONG THE MOHAWK countless times on TV as I was growing up, and I also read the novel by Walter Edmonds.

...St. Patrick's Day is on a Saturday this year, and the day-long celebration at TCM features eight films, including Dennis Morgan in MY WILD IRISH ROSE (1947), June Haver in THE DAUGHTER OF ROSIE O'GRADY (1950), and Tyrone Power in John Ford's rarely shown THE RISING OF THE MOON (1957).

...My DVR will be humming on March 19th, recording MEN IN WHITE (1934). This film from the waning days of the pre-Code era stars Clark Gable and Myrna Loy.

...Alan Ladd, Veronica Lake, and Robert Preston star in THIS GUN FOR HIRE (1942) on March 20th. Be there.

...Elizabeth Taylor was a teenager when she played the wife of a man (Robert Taylor) who might be a Communist spy in CONSPIRATOR (1949). It's part of a day-long Taylor tribute on March 21st.

...I can't ever make it through the end of Wyler's WUTHERING HEIGHTS (1939) without crying. Laurence Olivier and Merle Oberon get me every time. It airs on March 23rd and is followed by JANE EYRE (1944) and then the Bronte evening concludes with DEVOTION (1946), with Olivia de Havilland, Ida Lupino, and Nancy Coleman playing the Bronte sisters.

...Irene Dunne is one of my favorites, and four of her films will be shown on March 27th: JOY OF LIVING (1938), costarring another favorite, Douglas Fairbanks Jr.; OVER 21 (1945), a WWII service comedy with Alexander Knox; STINGAREE (1934) with Richard Dix; and SWEET ADELINE (1935).

...I'm very interested in checking out THE KING'S THIEF (1955), showing on March 29th. David Niven, George Sanders, Ann Blyth and a young Roger Moore? Sold!

...I've been meaning to catch up with a recording I made of THEY WON'T BELIEVE ME (1947), a film noir starring Robert Young and a terrific trio of actresses, Susan Hayward, Jane Greer, and Rita Johnson. I've read some really good things about this one. It airs March 30th.

...March 31st is a great example of why TCM is so wonderful: the schedule has everything from Chester Morris in ALIAS BOSTON BLACKIE (1942) to Ford's STAGECOACH (1939) to the silent classic SUNRISE (1927) to ATTACK OF THE 50-FOOT WOMAN (1958) to the film noir titles BORN TO KILL (1947) and HUMAN DESIRE (1954). That's entertainment!

Karl Malden is the March Star of the Month starting on the 7th. I'll be posting more information about that lineup of films next week.

For additional information on TCM in March, please consult the full schedule.

Update: TCM Star of the Month: Karl Malden.


Blogger Dave Enkosky said...

Sweet, I love Drums Along the Mohawk. Not necessarily my favorite Fonda/Ford collaboration (that'd probably be Young Mr. Lincoln), but a great picture nonetheless.

6:06 AM  
Blogger James Corry said...

Laura, you'll love "Mr. Scoutmaster" it's a terrific little film and very touching.....I hope that (one day) "Twilight Time" or some company like that releases "Mr. Scoutmaster" and "Mr. 880" to home video. Both films are excellent and neither one has ever had a home video release in any format....


7:16 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

Glad to hear from another DRUMS ALONG THE MOHAWK fan, Dave! Great movie.

Brad, thanks for the endorsement of MR. SCOUTMASTER, I look forward to it all the more now!

Best wishes,

9:23 AM  

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