Friday, April 01, 2016

TCM in April: Highlights

There's a big month ahead in April for Turner Classic Movies!

The TCM Classic Film Festival returns to Hollywood from April 28 to May 1st, so be watching for lots of fun interviews and other festival coverage to air in between the movies shown on TCM that weekend.

Last year's interview program LIVE FROM THE TCM CLASSIC FILM FESTIVAL: SOPHIA LOREN (2016) will make its debut on TCM on April 28th, which is also the opening day of this year's festival. Sophia was interviewed by her son Edoardo Ponti. Incidentally, it was announced this week that Burt Reynolds will be this year's "Live" interviewee.

I'm pleased to announce that I'll be covering the festival once more as credentialed media, so there's lots of information ahead here about the festival schedule and highlights.

First, though, it's time to take a closer look at the April schedule on TCM.

The April Star of the Month is Judy Garland. This is Garland's third time as Star of the Month; the last time was a dozen years ago, in April 2004. Over 30 Garland films will be shown on Friday evenings. Please note that this month I'll be incorporating a look at the Star of the Month titles in this post, rather than writing about them separately.

Every Monday in April the TCM Spotlight will be focused on the Barrymore family.

Below are just some of this month's highlights; click on any hyperlinked title for the related review.

...Judy Garland's first night as Star of the Month kicks off on April 1st with some of her earlier films: PIGSKIN PARADE (1936), LISTEN, DARLING (1936), LOVE FINDS ANDY HARDY (1938), BABES IN ARMS (1939), EVERYBODY SING (1938), THOROUGHBREDS DON'T CRY (1937), and BROADWAY MELODY of 1938 (1937). The evening provides a good overview of Garland's early career; she was just starting out but the powerhouse talent was apparent.

...The Saturday night theme on April 2nd is "Wyoming Westerns," with Alan Ladd as SHANE (1953), Joel McCrea as THE VIRGINIAN (1946), and Wallace Beery starring in WYOMING (1940). McCrea is seen in THE VIRGINIAN at the left with Brian Donlevy and Barbara Britton.

...NAUGHTY MARIETTA (1935), starring Jeanette MacDonald and Nelson Eddy, is marvelous fun and a good introduction to the team. It's on Sunday, April 3rd.

...There's a 24-hour Centennial Tribute to Gregory Peck on April 5th. 11 Peck films and an interview will be shown. I found THE MACOMBER AFFAIR (1947), costarring Joan Bennett, quite interesting. It was hard to see for years so it's wonderful it's now turning up on TCM from time to time.

...TELL NO TALES (1939), starring Melvyn Douglas, was a favorite discovery last year. It's part of a day of newspaper movies on April 6th.

...There's a fantastic day of films starring or directed by Ida Lupino on April 7th, with a whopping nine very interesting titles, ranging from THEY DRIVE BY NIGHT (1939) to THE HITCH-HIKER (1953).

...Then on April 8th there's another marvelous day, with eight films starring Ella Raines, an actress more people should know. Titles include one of John Wayne's most enjoyable '40s Westerns, TALL IN THE SADDLE (1944), and two noir titles I especially enjoy, IMPACT (1949), costarring Brian Donlevy and Helen Walker, and PHANTOM LADY (1944) with Alan Curtis and Franchot Tone.

...The Judy Garland films on Friday night, April 8th, are the classic THE WIZARD OF OZ (1939), followed by STRIKE UP THE BAND (1940), LITTLE NELLIE KELLY (1940), BABES ON BROADWAY (1941), ANDY HARDY MEETS DEBUTANTE (1940), and LIFE BEGINS FOR ANDY HARDY (1940).

...I saw Greta Garbo in QUEEN CHRISTINA (1933) for the first time at last year's TCM Classic Film Festival and wrote about it here. It's showing the morning of April 10th.

...Later on the 10th there's a "Cinderella" double bill of THE GLASS SLIPPER (1955) and THE SLIPPER AND THE ROSE (1976). My special GLASS SLIPPER photo gallery may be found here.

...Anyone interested in checking out MGM's long-running series of Dr. Kildare and Dr. Gillespie films can watch the very first one, YOUNG DR. KILDARE (1938), on Monday night the 11th. It's part of an evening of films with Lionel Barrymore.

...There are lots of early Ann Miller films on April 12th, including TARNISHED ANGEL (1938) with Lee Bowman, TOO MANY GIRLS (1940) with Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, and EVE KNEW HER APPLES (1945).

...A birthday tribute to Stanley Donen on April 13th includes my favorite film, SEVEN BRIDES FOR SEVEN BROTHERS (1954). Donen turns 92 that day.

...A day of Westerns on the 14th includes Randolph Scott, Robert Ryan, and Anne Jeffreys in TRAIL STREET (1947). The day also includes Tim Holt, Dick Foran, Tom Keene, and a young John Wayne.

...There are more Westerns on the 15th, including Dick Foran in MOONLIGHT ON THE PRAIRIE (1936).

...Friday, April 15th, there's a great evening of Judy Garland films: FOR ME AND MY GAL (1943), GIRL CRAZY (1943), MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS (1944), THE CLOCK (1945), ZIEGFELD GIRL (1941), PRESENTING LILY MARS (1943), and THOUSANDS CHEER (1943). Along with SEVEN BRIDES FOR SEVEN BROTHERS, showing a couple days earlier, MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS is one of my favorite films of all time.

...A cake, a palm reader, and a blind man, plus some really scary scissors: It's Fritz Lang's MINISTRY OF FEAR (1944), showing on April 17th. Ray Milland, Marjorie Reynolds, and Dan Duryea star.

...A day of Val Lewton films on April 18th includes THE LEOPARD MAN (1943), starring Dennis O'Keefe, to whom I paid tribute on his birth date earlier this week.

...TCM celebrates Harold Lloyd's birthday on April 20th! There are many great films showing, but my favorite is GIRL SHY (1924), costarring Lloyd's sweet regular costar Jobyna Ralston.

...There's a night of classic Judy Garland on April 22nd, with a lineup of EASTER PARADE (1948), THE PIRATE (1938), SUMMER STOCK (1950), and IN THE GOOD OLD SUMMERTIME (1949), plus her guest appearances in WORDS AND MUSIC (1948), ZIEGFELD FOLLIES (1946), and TILL THE CLOUDS ROLL BY (1946).

...On Sunday evening, April 24th, there's a "blended families" theme with YOURS, MINE AND OURS (1968) followed by WITH SIX YOU GET EGGROLL (1968).

...It's John Ford day on April 25th! Take the day off and enjoy classics like STAGECOACH (1939), SHE WORE A YELLOW RIBBON (1949), and WAGON MASTER (1950).

...Judy Garland month ends on April 29th, with A STAR IS BORN (1954), A CHILD IS WAITING (1962), JUDGMENT AT NUREMBERG (1961), GAY PURR-EE (1962), and PEPE (1960).

...April closes with a prime time tribute to Ruth Hussey on April 30th, showcasing her work in THE UNINVITED (1944), H.M. PULHAM, ESQ. (1941), and THE PHILADELPHIA STORY (1940).

For more on TCM in April, please check the complete schedule.


Blogger Net - "It's a Wonderful Movie" said...

I love your TCM highlights every month... I always look forward to them! Last night I watched one of the Judy Garland movies, Love Finds Andy Hardy. It's beautiful!. I just love that it's the Judy Garland month for April! Meet me in St. Louis is one my all time faves, too... So I'll definitely mark it on my calendar to watch!

Thank you for this fantastic update! Blessings, Net :)

12:43 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

Thank you so much for taking time out to let me know that, Net! It really makes it all worthwhile when I hear that my highlights are enjoyed and useful to others. It's a labor of love and I'm glad to be able to share with my readers here.

Enjoy MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS and all the other wonderful films available this month!

Best wishes,

10:35 AM  

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