Wednesday, August 29, 2012

TCM in September: Highlights

It's hard to believe, but Labor Day weekend is just about here, and it's time to look ahead to the September schedule on Turner Classic Movies.

Lauren Bacall will be the Star of the Month beginning on Wednesday, September 5th. I'll post more on some of those movies next week. (Update: TCM Star of the Month: Lauren Bacall.)

Here's an overview of some of the interesting titles airing on TCM this coming month:

...Dick Powell stars as Philip Marlowe in the classic MURDER, MY SWEET (1944) on September 4th. It's a great opportunity for anyone who's not yet caught the film which launched Powell into a whole new line of movie roles.

...HIGH WALL, airing September 5th, is an excellent film noir starring Robert Taylor and Audrey Totter. Taylor is absolutely terrific as an amnesiac who may have murdered his wife. Totter is a psychiatrist trying to unlock Taylor's repressed memories and solve the mystery.

...My favorite day on the September schedule may be September 10th, a six-film birthday tribute to Edmond O'Brien featuring a bunch of movies I've never seen. The titles include PARACHUTE BATTALION (1942) costarring an actress who was his real-life wife at the time, Nancy Kelly; COW COUNTRY (1953) with Helen Westcott; MAN IN THE DARK (1953) with Audrey Totter; and THE WORLD WAS HIS JURY (1958) with Mona Freeman and Karin Booth.

...Later on the 10th there's a "B" movie directed by Robert Wise and starring Tom Conway and Martha O'Driscoll, CRIMINAL COURT (1946). I loved the Wise "B" movie MYSTERY IN MEXICO (1948), and I'm a fan of Conway in Anthony Mann's TWO O'CLOCK COURAGE (1945) as well as the FALCON movie series, so CRIMINAL COURT should be a fun watch.

...September 11th I'll be recording an early Joan Fontaine "B" movie, the 65-minute film MAID'S NIGHT OUT (1938). Incidentally, there's lots more Joan Fontaine planned for her 95th birthday on October 22nd.

...There's another interesting "B" title on the 12th, YOUTH RUNS WILD (1944) starring Bonita Granville and Jean Brooks, directed by Mark Robson (ROUGHSHOD, I WANT YOU).

...Later on the 12th, Budd Boetticher directs Roddy McDowall in KILLER SHARK (1950).

...CREST OF THE WAVE (1954) is one of a handful of Gene Kelly films I've never seen. It airs September 14th.

...I really liked THE LAST OF MRS. CHEYNEY (1937) with three great stars: William Powell, Robert Montgomery, and Joan Crawford. It's shown on September 16th.

...THE WINDOW (1949) really wowed me at last spring's Noir City Festival, with its gritty setting and excellent performances by Bobby Driscoll, Barbara Hale, and Arthur Kennedy. Ruth Roman is also effective as one of the villains. Don't miss it on September 17th.

...Later on the 17th, YOUNG WINSTON (1972) airs. Star Simon Ward passed away last month, as noted in the obituary section at the end of this link roundup.

...Another movie I enjoyed at the Noir City Film Festival this year was NOBODY LIVES FOREVER (1946), starring John Garfield and Geraldine Fitzgerald. It's part of a day of Garfield films on September 19th.

...Early on Saturday, September 22nd, TCM is showing FIFTH AVENUE GIRL (1939). I enjoyed this film with Ginger Rogers helping an unhappy family to improve their lives. Walter Connolly, Verree Teasdale, Tim Holt, and James Ellison costar. (A bit of trivia: If one actually goes by the title shown in the film, technically the movie is FIFTH AVE GIRL. Now you know!)

...Jacqueline of Another Old Movie Blog shares my appreciation for Alexis Smith, who is in ANY NUMBER CAN PLAY (1949) on September 22nd. You can read Jacqueline's interesting review of this film, which costars Clark Gable, here. This one is still on my "to see" list!

...JOHNNY O'CLOCK (1947) is one of my favorite Dick Powell films, which I also enjoyed on the big screen at this year's Noir City fest. He costars with Evelyn Keyes, Lee J. Cobb, Ellen Drew, Thomas Gomez, and Nina Foch; look for Jeff Chandler in a small role. It's also on September 22nd.

...This month I enjoyed my first "B" Western starring George O'Brien, GUN LAW (1938). So I'll definitely be recording him in THE MARSHAL OF MESA CITY (1939) on September 24th!

...A title which sounds interesting, airing later on the 24th, is THE LUSTY MEN (1952) with Robert Mitchum, Susan Hayward, and Arthur Kennedy, directed by Nicholas Ray.

...An evening of films set in Brooklyn includes the 20th Century-Fox classic A TREE GROWS IN BROOKLYN (1945) and the black and white MGM musical IT HAPPENED IN BROOKLYN (1947). Peggy Ann Garner plays Francie Nolan in TREE, costarring Dorothy McGuire, James Dunn, Joan Blondell, and Lloyd Nolan. IT HAPPENED IN BROOKLYN stars Frank Sinatra, Kathryn Grayson, and Jimmy Durante. Brooklyn Night is September 25th.

...On September 26th, Douglas Fairbanks Jr. and Margaret Lockwood star with Laura LaPlante in MAN OF THE MOMENT (1935). Fairbanks and Lockwood were later teamed in RULERS OF THE SEA (1939).

...THE SECRET FURY (1950) has been on my "need to watch" list for some time now. It stars Claudette Colbert and Robert Ryan, plus the wonderful character actress Jane Cowl. The airdate is September 27th.

...September 28th is a fantastic day! The schedule includes a number of MGM musicals, including lesser-known titles like SUMMER HOLIDAY (1948) and THE BELLE OF NEW YORK (1952). The musicals are followed by my favorite James Garner comedy, SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL SHERIFF! (1969), and an early Western satire, the amusing ALONG CAME JONES (1945) with Gary Cooper and Loretta Young.

...Susan Peters, whose film THE SIGN OF THE RAM (1948) is coming to TCM in October, received an Oscar nomination as Best Supporting Acress for the MGM classic RANDOM HARVEST (1942), starring Ronald Colman and Greer Garson. It will be shown September 29th. Incidentally, I also recommend the James Hilton novel.

For more information please visit the complete schedule at the Turner Classic Movies website.

Happy September movie viewing!


Blogger Blake Lucas said...

The unmissable one you mention is THE LUSTY MEN.

Far from being simply interesting (as it does sound), this is hands down one of the greatest movies ever made.

For me, Nicholas Ray's best movie (meaning first among equals), also Mitchum's greatest performance, and the other leads Hayward and Kennedy are also in peak form, but the individual elements cannot convey the whole so I'll just say this deserves to be considered one of the central masterpieces of the American cinema far more than a lot of "official" classics.

3:45 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

Thank you so much, Blake, that is certainly a strong endorsement! Looking forward very much to seeing this one for the first time down the road.

Best wishes,

9:52 PM  
Blogger Caftan Woman said...

"High Wall" is the one with elevator, isn't it?

Another great month from TCM and I really appreciate your pointing out the winners.

5:04 AM  
Blogger Jacqueline T. Lynch said...

Thanks for the mention. I'm glad they're running "Any Number Can Play" again just so I can finally catch the first 10 or 15 minutes that I missed. Look for all the familiar character actors in this one. And thanks for the recommendations on the other films.

5:11 AM  
Blogger barrylane said...

Re Any Number Can Play is not at all spot on. Gablewith his back to the camera is more powerful than most in close up. Take a look at the beginning and end of Soldier of Fortune. Re Mary Astor in this regard. She had personal difficulties and they were probably trying to protect her. Despite that, she is effective. Now re Gable's character and his relatinship with his son. This thing is based on actual events that took place in and around Milwaukee. The son was, is because he may very well be alive, gay. And it is based on that person's thoughts about the father he admired. My late wife loved this film. She had cardioligical problems just as the hero has, and that was a revelation to her.

10:46 AM  
Blogger Kristina said...

totally agree with your recommendations on Sign of the Ram, High Wall, Johnny O'Clock, all things Edmond O'Brien...

never seen Maid's Night Out, that looks interesting, as do the Fairbanks & Lockwood. I was looking forward to Lusty Men already, but wow, with Blake's high praise, now I really can't wait!

Thanks so much, Laura, the only thing I love more than printing out my TCM guide the moment it's up & marking it all up is reading my fav blogger's previews

4:18 AM  
Blogger barrylane said...


My post the other day was strictly re your link to the comment on Any Number Can Play. Only realized in hindsight that in context of your column it may not have made much sense.

9:55 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

Thanks to all of you, I love doing this post each month and am so glad to know it's enjoyed. :) Happy viewing in September!!

Best wishes,

8:42 PM  

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