Thursday, August 18, 2016

Quick Preview of TCM in November

Actress Natalie Wood is the November Star of the Month on Turner Classic Movies.

The November schedule will include over two dozen Wood films shown on Friday evenings, with titles ranging from her early days as a child actress to the film she was making at the time of her untimely death, BRAINSTORM (1983).

As mentioned in my last link roundup, TCM and Running Press have a new book due out in October, NATALIE WOOD: REFLECTIONS ON A LEGENDARY LIFE by Manoah Bowman.

Must viewing in November will include LIVE FROM THE TCM CLASSIC FILM FESTIVAL: NORMAN LLOYD (2016). Wonderful news! Those of us who have enjoyed Norman Lloyd's appearances at the festival adore him, and now many more viewers will be able to enjoy his tales of classic Hollywood. The schedule also includes a showing of HE RAN ALL THE WAY (1951), which I saw with cast member Lloyd in the audience at this year's festival.

There are many more interesting things on the November schedule, starting with the Deanna Durbin films NICE GIRL? (1941) and I'LL BE YOURS (1947), rescheduled from last June. These films were available on VHS but have yet to be released on Region 1 DVD in the U.S.

It's especially exciting that TCM has a rarely seen Paramount film on the schedule, THE SAINTED SISTERS (1948), starring Veronica Lake and Joan Caulfield. And an evening celebrating the centennial of our national parks will include back-to-back showings of a few Traveltalk shorts, including titles such as GRAND CANYON, PRIDE OF CREATION (1944) and YOSEMITE THE MAGNIFICENT (1941).

I was pleased to see that Joel McCrea and Ann Rutherford will each be honored with a day of films in their birthday month, though not on their November 5th and 2nd birth dates. Eleanor Powell will receive a tribute on her November 21st birthday. There are also tributes to Stuart Heisler, Sissy Spacek, Grace Moore, Howard Hawks, Rock Hudson, Alfred Hitchcock, and Dustin Hoffman.

The November Spotlight, "To Tell the Truth," focuses on documentaries on a wide variety of topics; a number of titles look quite interesting, including one on the 1948 London Olympics and another on the Antarctic, THE SECRET LAND (1948), narrated by Robert Taylor, Robert Montgomery, and Van Heflin.

That said, I do find the placement of a series of left-leaning political documentaries on Election Eve curious; I believe TCM could have scheduled those more, shall we say, thoughtfully. Not to mention -- a Michael Moore film on TCM? Really? TCM is normally a refuge from such inanity.

Moving on: November themes include political movies, Popeye cartoons, Fred & Ginger, con artists, boxing, and wacky families. And as usual, PLYMOUTH ADVENTURE (1952) shows up Thanksgiving week!

The month comes to an end with a marvelous day of Christmas and winter-themed movies on November 30th, including the comedy SNOWED UNDER (1936), starring George Brent and Genevieve Tobin. Mixing that amusing film in with more familiar titles was a wonderful idea.

I'll have much more on the November schedule posted here around Halloween. In the meantime, the September Star of the Month will be Gene Hackman, with October featuring horror great Christopher Lee. And looking ahead, TCM Backlot members were given the choice of voting for Myrna Loy or Bette Davis for the December Star of the Month, and Loy has been announced as the winner.


Blogger barrylane said...

Regarding TCM and the election, right on all counts.

9:50 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

Today on Twitter Charles Tabesh of TCM responded briefly to my Tweets on this topic. I give him props for acknowledging the issues raised. Perhaps TCM will approach such programming more cautiously in the future?

Best wishes,

10:20 PM  

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