6 Film Joys at TCM FEST 2017

The TCM Film Festival 2017 is a wrap.  By the end of the weekend after seeing 15 films I admit to being a bit blurry eyed.  But what delightful films they were!  The following are my six favorites (all first time watches).

6. Postcards from the Edge

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Meryl is amazing.  So many touching lines.  So real.

5. David and Lisa

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Intense, troubling, and hopeful.

4. Rafter Romance

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Ginger is adorable as always and the script is clever and being pre-code, just a little naughty.

3. Bonnie and Clyde

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A nearly perfect picture.

2. The China Syndrome

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It’s a great film that can make you SO very angry as this one made me.

1. Harold and Maude

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A delight.

Life is absurd.

Live with abandon.

Cheers!

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TCM Film Fest: 6 Incredible Films

I had an amazing experience at my first ever TCM Film Festival.  I saw 13 films and attended 7 special Club TCM events.   However, for me 6 of those glorious movies stood head and shoulders above the rest.  Here are those standouts in descending order.

6)The Band Wagon

This is an all-time favorite of mine that I already own on DVD.  Nevertheless, Fred Astaire is my favorite actor ever so this was a can’t miss.  I have to say though that in many ways it was like experiencing it for the first time.  Seeing it on the big screen I noticed so many little things I’d never picked up on before.  Also, the crowd was so very responsive.  I mean they clapped like 10 times… during the opening credits!!!  I’d never been around such appreciative old movie fans.

O, what a script and Fred’s ‘By Myself’ is sublime.  Great way to end the festival.

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Took this picture during the movie.  My favorite number!!
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And here I am as one of the triplets.  : )


5)One Potato, Two Potato

I had never seen this film before and was very excited when I read that it was the first movie to deal with interracial marriage.  This was a must see!

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Lovely acting all around.  I cried at least five separate times.

Spoiler alert: The ending is completely devastating.

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Happily waiting in line for a fabulous film.
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The view from my waiting spot.

4)Shanghai Express

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This was a world premier restoration of an astounding film.  So moody and memorable.  This is my favorite Marlene Dietrich performance.  Of course Josef von Sternberg was an absolute genius.  Can anyone watch this without falling a little in love with Shanghai Lily?

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3)Repeat Performance

“Film noir meets the Twilight Zone in this rarity, which was almost impossible to find until the Film Noir Foundation restored it… Joan Leslie stars as a temperamental actress who kills her philandering husband on New Years Eve.  When she wishes she could do the past year over again, her wish comes true- but can she fight fate, or will things still end the same?”

Sounded intriguing.  A total change of pace for Joan Leslie.  Great job by the supporting cast and WOW was her husband super creepy or what?!

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I was waiting in line to see Angela Lansbury introduce the Manchurian candidate but was turned away fourth from the front of the line.  Heartbreaking!  (Angela I love you!!)  So a cool Australian lady and I booked it over to the Egyptian for Repeat Performance which ended up being a total treat.  (Found out later my Australian friend is a triathlete and that she kindly slowed down our run so as not leave me in the dust.)

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Outside Grauman’s waiting for the Manchurian Candidate.
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Ceiling of Grauman’s Chinese
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Grauman’s Chinese Theater setting up for the Francis Ford Coppola handprint ceremony.

2)Gog in 3D (Midnight showing)

The underground research facility seems to have developed a mind of it’s own and is killing off the staff one by one.  Holy mackerel!  What is happening?!

This film was so utterly horrid it was absolutely delightful.  Interestingly enough when released critic praised the scientific accuracy of the film.  Now the science is laughably ridiculous.  Remember!  “Sound can kill!!!”

David Sheppard: [to Joanna who is in a hospital bed] “The doctor says it isn’t serious, just a little too much radiation.”

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This is a picture I took during the film. The 3-D was exquisite.

I’m sorry to be so  uncharitable but from all I can see Richard Egan is an example of someone becoming a movie star on looks alone.  The acting talent is sorely lacking, missing in action even.  I think the monkey at the beginning did the best acting job in the picture apart from possibly Herbert Marshall.  Possibly.

This film, although shot in 3D, was released at the tail-end of the first 3D fad (53–54) and was often projected “flat” in its widescreen aspect ratio.

Of course, 1950’s male chauvinism abounds.  Yikes!

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After seeing him in Trouble in Paradise, The Good Fairy, and If Only You Could Cook I perceived Herbert Marshall as the epitome of all things urbane and sophisticated.  He is at all times maddeningly civilized.  So I squealed with delight when the head scientist (Mr. Marshall) suddenly appeared to attack the robot Gog with a flame thrower.  Classic camp!

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Drum role please… My favorite film of the festival was…

1)Ace in the Hole

Cynical and biting…

That screenplay!  The themes of the film are so relevant today.  Really made me think about human nature, corruption, and the manipulation of the masses.

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The Chinese Multiplex House #1 is beginning to fill up.
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Took this during the film.

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Jan Sterling was outstanding.  Really brilliant.

*I recommend The High and the Mighty for another standout Jan Sterling performance in a somewhat forgotten film.

Two standout lines:

“I’ve met a lot of hard-boiled eggs in my time, but you–you’re twenty minutes.”

“I don’t pray. Kneeling bags my nylons.”

 

Cheers to Turner Classic Movies.  I had a blast!  Thanks for the memories.

 

That’s entertainment!  And to end on an oh so happy note.

Click here to read another blogger’s fun recap of their festival adventure’s.

Click here to read about the super hard questions for the ‘So You Think You Know Movies’ trivia contest.

Click here to read a great review of one of the very best movies screened at the festival, The More the Merrier.

TCM Film Festival: I’m Going Hollywood!

I can’t believe the TCM Classic Film Festival is almost here!  I discovered this awesome event when I happened upon Noir Girl‘s TCM Festival 2015 diary.  I was instantly hooked!    So ever since like 1 week after the last festival I’ve been counting down the days.  This is my first time attending so I’m a complete newbie to the whole excruciating selection process.  The theme this year is Moving Pictures with subcategories like animal movies, inspirational sports movies, love and loss, religious films, and coming of age.  (I’m still grieving no Robert Osborne at the festival.  I love that man!)CaOsFiIWAAA09N4

For those who might want to know this Ginger Rogers loving, musical adoring, horror despising, noir discovering, 28 year old Jimmy Stewart fan’s selections, well… here you go.

Thursday

I’ll be spending the afternoon at #ClubTCM for Great Genre Debate and Library Bar at The Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel and then the Meet TCM event.  Then I’ll be playing So You Think You Know Movies and hopefully impress with my mad trivia skills.  Then it’ll be time for the welcome party.  Next is that oh so special first movie of the festival.  I’ve decided on a bold for it’s time film about interracial marriage that I’ve never seen called One Potato, Two Potato.

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I might try to go to bed early here to save up my movie watching energy for the next three days although Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner will be super tempting.

Friday

I’ll have to pass up Doris Day in Love Me or Leave me because I absolutely can’t miss seeing Marlene Dietrich on the big screen in Shanghai Express.  The cinematography is absolutely mind boggling.

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Then The Way We Were or possibly Double Harness with William Powell if I want to be sure to make Tea and Sympathy at 2.  If I can’t make Tea and Sympathy I’ll enjoy Amazing Film Discoveries instead.  OH, the uncertainty!  When will I eat you ask?  Beats me.  This is where goldfish crackers come in super handy.

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Then on to Club TCM for vaudeville 101:

“Live vaudeville was once the leading form of American entertainment—until talkies killed it. But it was a training ground for movie icons like Buster Keaton, Fred Astaire, the Marx Brothers, Mae West, Judy Garland and even Cary Grant. Film Forum’s Bruce Goldstein, who at past festivals presented “Pre-Code 101” and “Character Actors 101,” will re-create vaudeville’s golden age with some of its greatest acts.”

This day is definitely setting up to be my very favorite!

Then after a little nourishment it’ll be time for Voices of Light: The Passion of Joan of Arc with Richard Einhorn’s original score performed by a live orchestra and vocalists.

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I probably won’t be able to make The Manchurian Candidate from here but I can’t help but try because seeing the living legend, Angela Lansbury, would be the ultimate!  These are the two films I want to see the most.  If only I could make both!  If I can’t get in I’ll see Repeat Performance, a little known film noir with Joan Leslie of all people.

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Saturday

Saturday morning I have to choose between Ace in the Hole and 90th Anniversary of Vitaphone documentary.

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I was seriously considering Intolerance next but, as sacreligous as it is to classic movie buffs, I’m afraid I’ll be slightly tortured.  So I’m opting instead for Dead Men Wear Plaid introduced by Carl Reiner himself.  Then on to The War of the Worlds.  Woohoo!  Can’t wait!  Not usually a big sci-fi fan but this one appeals bigtime.  “Two Oscar-winners, sound editor Ben Burtt and special effects technician Craig Barron, share their unique insights into George Pal’s Oscar winning science-fiction classic.”the-war-of-the-worlds-1953-1

Then it’ll be time for the luscious I’ve Always Loved You, a classic romance I’ve never seen or maybe I’ll just curl up on a bench and take a nap. ; )

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If my motors still running into the later evening I have to decide between Rocky and A Short History of Widescreen Cinema.  Ugh!

Sunday

The last day… Oh dear…  Better make my picks count.  The day starts off with one of the toughest decisions of the festival.  To see Holiday in Spain in Smell-O-Vision at the Cinerama Dome or stay closer to home base and see the classic tearjerker All That Heaven Allows.  This decision will come down to the wire.poster_allthatheavenallows

Based on how that plays out I’ll see either Law and Order, The Kid, or The Art of the Film Score.   Then grab a bite to eat at the historic Pig’ N Whistle founded in 1927.

Chaplin_The_Kid_editSunday is the day with 6 movie surprises that we don’t know yet so I can’t completely plan this one out but the day will probably end with my favorite male movie star Fred Astaire in The Band Wagon.  Just hearing him sing By Myself is more than worth the price of admission.  Also, hoping to sneak in a visit to the Hollywood Museum (and possible Madame Tussauds Wax Museum) at some point.  Then over to the Closing Night Party (if I haven’t previously keeled over) at Club TCM where I’ll say goodbye to a few movie lovin’ friends and reminisce about the films we love the most.1953: Fred Astaire (1899 - 1987) and Cyd Charisse perform a dance number in 'Band Wagon', directed by Vincente Minnelli for MGM.

Interesting Band Wagon post.

(Passing up some all-time fav’s like A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, The More the Merrier, It’s a Wonderful Life, The King and I, Midnight, and Old Yeller in favor of film’s I’ve never seen.)

Thanks for checking out my oh so shaky itinerary.  I’d love to hear about your picks or get some festival advice from the old hands.

California, here I come!