Friday, May 31, 2013

TCM in June: Highlights

Summer's almost here, my favorite time of year!

There's a great schedule ahead in June on Turner Classic Movies.

The June Star of the Month will be Eleanor Parker.

Over two dozen Parker films weill be shown on Monday evenings in June. I'll be taking a closer look at those titles in a couple more days.

This month's Friday Night Spotlight series will be film noir writers, hosted by Eddie Muller. I'll also be sharing info on those titles in a separate post before the series starts on Friday, June 7th.

Here's a look at some more of the interesting titles ahead on TCM in June:

...I was interested to learn earlier this year that '40s actress Linda Hayes was the mother of Cathy Lee Crosby and Lucinda Crosby. She stars with Kent Taylor in the "B" film SUED FOR LIBEL on June 1st; the entire evening lineup is devoted to the theme of libel! Only on TCM.

...The summer series Essentials Jr. starts off on Sunday, June 2nd, with a terrific choice for kids of all ages, THE COURT JESTER (1956). All well-rounded children should know how to recite "The vessel with the pestle has the pellet with the poison, the chalice from the palace has the brew that is true!"

...June 3rd is the birthday of Paulette Goddard. Titles on the schedule include MODERN TIMES (1936), THE WOMEN (1939), THE GREAT DICTATOR (1940), and SECOND CHORUS (1940). The last title is probably the weakest of Fred Astaire's musicals, but Paulette is one of the things that makes watching the film worth the time for Astaire completists.

...Tuesday, June 4th, may be my favorite day on the schedule. It's filled with movies starring "B" Western leading lady Virginia Vale, many of which team her with George O'Brien. I just saw them in THE MARSHAL OF MESA CITY (1939) and thoroughly enjoyed it. Five of the six films O'Brien and Vale made together will be shown, as well as one she made with Tim Holt, ROBBERS OF THE RANGE (1941), and there are other Vale "B" titles too!

...June 5th celebrates one of my all-time favorites, Robert Taylor, including a couple of my top Taylor picks, HIGH WALL (1947) and WESTWARD THE WOMEN (1951).

...D Day is being commemorated with war films shown on June 6th. Earlier this year Jacqueline wrote about the Army Air Corps training film RESISTING ENEMY INTERROGATION (1944) at Another Old Movie Blog. It has an interesting cast including Lloyd Nolan, Arthur Kennedy, and Craig Stevens. How great that TCM is going to show it!

...CAREFREE (1938) is one of my favorite Fred and Ginger movies; it feels more like a screwball comedy than a musical -- though it's got plenty of music too -- and I find it grand fun. It's on June 7th.

...One of my favorite songs from Busby Berkeley's Warner Bros. musicals is "I Only Have Eyes For You." That song originated in DAMES (1934), showing on Sunday, June 9th. DAMES stars Dick Powell, Ruby Keeler, and Joan Blondell.

...Frank Lovejoy and Edmond O'Brien in the same movie, directed by Ida Lupino? I need to catch up with THE HITCH-HIKER (1953), which airs on June 11th.

...One of the more amusing themes on TCM this month is "Working Women Who Surrender in the End." Half a dozen films fitting this description will be shown the evening of June 11th, including Ruth Chatterton and George Brent in FEMALE (1933) -- some of the set designs in that one have to be seen to be believed -- and Joan Crawford and Melvyn Douglas in THEY ALL KISSED THE BRIDE (1942).

...On June 12th the theme is "Lana Turner in the '50s," including IMITATION OF LIFE (1959), THE BAD AND THE BEAUTIFUL (1952), and LATIN LOVERS (1953). The latter is colorful MGM escapism, costarring Ricardo Montalban and John Lund.

...Preston Foster and Basil Rathbone star in THE LAST DAYS OF POMPEII (1935) on June 13th. I have trouble imagining Preston Foster in a costume drama such as that, but as a Foster fan I guess I need to check it out!

...The theme is pre-Code newspaper photographers on June 17th, with back to back showings of William Gargan in HEADLINE SHOOTER (1933) and James Cagney in PICTURE SNATCHER (1933). HEADLINE SHOOTER is the only film I know of offhand which features the Long Beach Earthquake; I'd love to know if there are more.

...A primetime tribute to Sammy Cahn on June 18th includes one of my all-time favorite musicals, the underappreciated TONIGHT AND EVERY NIGHT (1945). Rita Hayworth, Lee Bowman, and Janet Blair star in a story set during the London Blitz.

...A TCM programmer had fun lining up several movies with one-word titles for June 20th. The films shown include Gail Patrick and Anita Louise in RENO (1940), Humphrey Bogart and Alexis Smith in CONFLICT (1945), and Dick Powell in CORNERED (1945).

...A lineup of Jane Russell movies on June 21st includes her first film, THE OUTLAW (1943), followed by YOUNG WIDOW (1946) with Louis Hayward and Faith Domergue, plus two films with Gilbert Roland, THE FRENCH LINE (1954) and UNDERWATER! (1955).

...CALAMITY JANE (1953) is one of my very favorite Doris Day movies. She plays the title role, costarring with Howard Keel as Wild Bill Hickok. The terrific score includes "Secret Love." It airs June 23rd.

...I really enjoyed the trio of Laraine Day, Lana Turner, and Susan Peters as WACs in the WWII film KEEP YOUR POWDER DRY (1945). It will be shown June 25th.

...Marie Windsor and Richard Denning star in DOUBLE DEAL (1950) on June 26th. I've never heard of it but Marie Windsor makes any movie more interesting.

...Patricia Medina, also known as Mrs. Joseph Cotten, passed away last year. On June 27th TCM honors Medina by showing several titles in which she appeared, including PIRATES OF TRIPOLI (1955) with Paul Henreid, DRUMS OF TAHITI (1954) with Dennis O'Keefe, THE BLACK KNIGHT (1954) with Alan Ladd, and THE LADY AND THE BANDIT (1951) with Louis Hayward.

...LURED (1947) is a very entertaining Douglas Sirk thriller starring George Sanders and Lucille Ball. It will be shown in the early morning hours on June 30th.

...MGM musical fans will want to catch GIVE A GIRL A BREAK (1953) on June 30th. It stars Marge and Gower Champion, Debbie Reynolds, and the young and adorable Bob Fosse.

Be sure to check out TCM's complete schedule. Happy viewing!

Update: For information on classics on Fox Movie Channel this month, please visit Fox Movie Channel in June: Highlights.


Blogger john knight said...

Patricia Medina made my kinda movies.
I saw DRUMS OF TAHITI in 3D at Londons National Film
Theater a few years back;a fun movie,though its a shame
Sam Katzmans budget could not make the earthquakes and
volcanoes look convincing.
Another Katzman epic with Patricia, DUEL ON THE MISSISSIPPI
was released recently by Sony.Really enjoyed that one,Patricia
is more strident than usual in that film as well.
In July,according to The Digital Bits Sony are releasing
URANIUM BOOM,another Katzman production with Patricia and
Dennis Morgan,directed by William Castle;Im already there!
I love THE BLACK KNIGHT and its at the top of my list for
a DVD release.
Have not seen the Louis Hayward Highwayman film with Patricia
but would sure love too.
By the way Laura have you heard about the TCM/Sony Randolph
Scott set due in September;fantastic news.
That means that GUNFIGHTERS (1947) will be the only Scott Columbia
are awesome...such brilliant casts too!

7:29 AM  
Blogger Vienna said...

Wow! What a lineup,you lucky people.
Please don't miss The Hitchhiker,Laura.
Would love to see Reno and Double Deal
I also love that song, "I only have eyes for you."

8:04 AM  
Blogger Citizen Screen said...

As always, a fabulous round-up, Laura! I better clear my DVR for June. I'm shamefully unaware of Eleanor Parker in film so I look forward to watching that line-up and the commentaries.


8:09 AM  
Blogger Blake Lucas said...

I echo Vienna in saying "Please don't miss The Hitchhiker, Laura."

Those half-dozen movies Ida Lupino directed for her own company 1949 (Not Wanted is credited to Elmer Clifton but almost entirely directed by her) to 1953 are precious. The Hitchhiker has been cited as Lupino's own favorite--interestingly, it is the only one of the six with no women, focused on friends Lovejoy and O'Brien and the psychotic killer they pick up William Talman.

I hope someday TCM will show these six films together on one night. Lupino, who had long been one of the best actresses around, was a brilliant director, and the only woman in Hollywood doing it at the time.

11:28 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

Thanks to you all so much for the feedback!

John, always enjoy your takes on lesser-known movies, your comments usually lead me to jot down more titles to find. :) Had heard there would be a Randolph Scott Columbia set this year but not when, so it's great news to know the month. Thank you!

Vienna and Blake, thanks for the encouragement on THE HITCHHIKER, will have to move that up on the "to see" list. I sure love the lead actors.

Thank you, Aurora! I hope to have a post up on the Eleanor Parker films showing this month by sometime Monday. There are many good ones; among the favorites I recommend are THE VERY THOUGHT OF YOU, THE VOICE OF THE TURTLE, and SCARAMOUCHE.

Thanks for that additional information on Lupino, Blake! Especially interested to learn about how role behind the scenes on NOT WANTED. I agree, an evening of Lupino-directed films on TCM would be a fabulous bit of programming. And early wishes for a very happy birthday! :)

Best wishes,

9:16 AM  
Blogger Blake Lucas said...

Thanks for the birthday wishes, Laura.

To respond re NOT WANTED, Lupino had started her production company (with then husband Collier Young as other partner I believe) and may have simply intended to be a creative force as a writer and producer. So it's her project, and she is the one who found Sally Forrest, who resembles her, but veteran Elmer Clifton was hired to direct--however, as is generally acknowledged, he had a heart attack right after shooting started and she took over and directed almost all of it, then went on to officially direct the other five. But as a gesture, she credited Clifton as director of this anyway.

In Eleanor Parker month, I highly recommend HOME FROM THE HILL, which I consider Minnelli's other best melodrama along with SOME CAME RUNNING (and they were made back to back). Parker stars with Robert Mitchum (at the peak of his acting powers in his role), along with George Peppard and George Hamilton, both up and coming and kind of amazing in this, and former Disney child star Luana Patten, who I believe was undervalued in her brief career as a mature (though still young) actress, as this film shows.

11:28 AM  

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