Friday, July 29, 2011

My Picks: TCM's Summer Under the Stars 2011

As most of you probably know, TCM's annual Summer Under the Stars begins this Monday, August 1st. SUts is my personal favorite feature on TCM (along with 31 Days of Oscar), so, naturally, I'm very excited. I'm also quite excited that some of my favorite actors and actresses are being honored this year. Here are some of the highlights I recommend viewing throughout the month of August. I won't be including everyday, but most of them, at least,

August 1- Marlon Brando
I'm really not much of a Brando fan, but he's in a few of my favorites that are definitely worth watching:

Guys and Dolls (1955)- 5:15PM EST
A Streetcar Named Desire (1951)- 9:30PM EST
On the Waterfront (1954)- 12:00AM EST

August 3- Bette Davis
Davis is one of my favorite actresses- I'm so glad she's been included this year!

Stardust: The Bette Davis Story (2005)- 7:30AM EST
Now, Voyager (1942)- 9:00AM EST My all time favorite of hers- a must see.
20,000 Years In Sing Sing (1932)- 12:45:PM EST
The Letter (1940)- 4:30PM EST
The Petrified Forest (1936)- 6:30PM EST
Jezebel (1938)- 10:00PM EST

August 5- John Garfield

The Postman Always Rings Twice (1946)- 8:00PM EST
Destination Tokyo (1943)- 3:30AM EST

August 6- Lucille Ball
Happy 100th, Lucy! This is also the day of the Loving Lucy blogathon at True Classics.

Without Love (1945)- 9:30AM EST (One of Tracy and Hepburn's best- very underrated.)
The Long, Long Trailer (1954)- 2:30PM EST
Stage Door (1937)- 8:00PM EST
The Big Street (1942)- 9:45PM EST

August 9- Ann Dvorak

Scarface (1932)- 8:00PM EST

August 10- Shirley MacLaine

The Children's Hour (1961)- 12:00PM EST
The Apartment (1960)- 8:00PM EST
Some Came Running (1958)- 10:30PM EST
Ocean's Eleven (1960) 1:00AM EST

August 12- Claudette Colbert

Without Reservations (1946)- 4:15PM EST
It Happened One Night (1934)- 11:30PM EST
Since You Went Away (1944)- 1:30 AM EST

August 13 (birthday of yours truly:)- James Stewart
I'll admit I'm disappointed that they're not airing any of his Hitchcock films (as it's Hitchcock's birthday as well).

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939)- 9:00AM EST
Wife vs. Secretary (1936)- 11:15AM EST
The Shop Around the Corner (1940) 2:30PM EST
Anatomy of a Murder (1959)- 12:00AM EST

August 14- Ralph Bellamy

The Wolf Man (1941)- 6:45PM EST
His Girl Friday (1940)- 8:00PM EST

August 17- Humphrey Bogart
Honestly, I'm more excited for this than I am my birthday, even though I've seen all but five of the films featured. Although I wish they were showing The African Queen, several other of my all time favorites  are coming on that I'll definitely be sitting down to watch again.

To Have and Have Not (1944)- 11:00AM EST
The Big Sleep (1946)- 12:45PM EST
High Sierra (1941)- 2:45PM EST
In a Lonely Place (1950)- 6:15PM EST
The Maltese Falcon (1941)- 8:00PM EST
Sahara (1943)- 10:00PM EST
Beat the Devil (1954)- 12:00AM EST
The Caine Mutiny (1954)- 2:00AM EST
Tokyo Joe (1949)- 4:15 PM EST

August 19- Debbie Reynolds

Singin' In the Rain (1952)- 2:15AM EST (I need to see more of her films...)

August 20- Montgomery Clift

Lonelyhearts (1958)- 9:00AM EST
From Here to Eternity (1953)- 3:30AM EST
The Misfits (1961)- 5:45PM EST
A Place In the Sun (1951)- 8:00PM EST (Every classic film fan has to watch this at least once.)
The Heiress (1949)- 10:15PM EST
The Search (1948)- 12:15AM EST
I Confess (1953)- 2:15AM EST

August 21-Cary Grant

The Philadelphia Story (1940)- 3:30PM EST
North by Northwest (1959)- 5:30PM EST
Only Angels Have Wings (1939)- 10:15PM EST
The Bishop's Wife (1947)- 2:15AM
Bringing Up Baby (1938)- 4:15AM

August 22- Joan Crawford

Mildred Pierce (1945)- 11:00PM EST

August 23- Conrad Veidt

All Through the Night (1942)- 9:30AM EST (Very underrated film, and one of Bogie's best.)
A Woman's Face (1941)- 6:00PM EST
Casablanca (1942)- 12:00AM EST (Best. Movie. Ever.)

August 25- Burt Lancaster

Sweet Smell of Success (1957)- 12:00PM EST
Brute Force (1947)- 4:00PM EST
The Killers (1946)- 11:30PM EST

August 28- Carole Lombard

To Be or Not to Be (1942)- 6:15PM EST
My Man Godfrey (1936)- 8:00PM EST

August 31- Marlene Dietrich

Stage Fright (1950)- 1:15PM EST
Shanghai Express (1932)- 6:30PM EST

Monday, July 25, 2011

Review: The King and I (1956)

IMDb Synopsis: Musical about a widow who accepts a job as a live-in governess of the King of Siam's children.

I'll be the first to admit that I'm not a huge fan of musicals. Sure, I like some, such as The Wizard of Oz, A Star Is Born and Mary Poppins, but most of my favorite films are found within the likes of dramas and film noirs. I'm glad to say, though, that The King and I is an exception.

This film is one of several to be adapted from one of Rodgers and Hammerstein's Broadway Musicals, so it's no surprise that the musical numbers and the score are both wonderful. (The score actually won an Academy Award in 1957). My personal favorite of the musical numbers was "Shall We Dance"; you can view it here.

As for the acting, I thought Deborah Kerr and Yul Brynner were both marvelous. I've seen Kerr is several films, as she is one of my favorite actresses, and she does not disappoint as Anna. This is my first time watching a Brynner film- he even won the Best Actor Oscar for this film- but it certainly won't be my last.

The color cinematography in The King and I is spectacular, but I don't expect any less from a Cinemascope film. Walter Lang's Academy Award nominated directing is great as well. Lang also directed another Rodgers and Hammerstein film, State Fair, which I don't care for very much.

Overall, I found The King and I to be a wonderful film, and one of few musicals that I can say I truly loved. Check it out if you haven't done so already.

5/5 stars

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Upcoming Blogathons

Before I post my review of The King and I (which should be up before Wednesday), I wanted to share the news of a few upcoming blogathons I will be participating in over the next few months. I have them all listed in a widget on the left, but I wanted to make an official post, too.

August 1 & 2: The Ida Lupino Blogathon
Hosted by Miss Ida Lupino

August 6: Loving Lucy Blogathon
Hosted by True Classics

September 24: Fashion In Film Blogathon

October 6-9: The Carole Lombard Blogathon
Hosted by Carole & Co

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Review: Judgment at Nuremberg (1961)

 IMDb Synopsis: In 1948, an American court in occupied Germany tries four Nazi judges for war crimes. 

I'm going to start off and say that this was one of the most amazing and mind-blowing films I've ever seen. Stanley Kramer made an absolute masterpiece that should have taken home the Academy Award for Best Picture in 1961.

Spencer Tracy, Burt Lancaster, Richard Widmark, Marlene Dietrich, Maximilian Shell, Judy Garland, and Montgomery Clift. If it's not already obvious, this film has a heckuva cast. All of the actors delivered flawless performances, but I think the most profound ones came from the supporting cast- particularly Judy Garland and Montgomery Clift. Anyone who has seen A Star Is Born knows that Judy was a wonderful actress, and she proves it again in Nuremberg. Monty Clift is one of my all time favorite actors, and I think it's safe to say that this is my personal favorite of his performances (although I do love A Place In the Sun and From Here to Eternity). His acting was so deep and genuine to the point that I found it to be heart-breaking.

The direction in Nuremberg is stunning, but I don't expect anything less from Stanley Kramer, who also directed two of my favorite films, The Defiant Ones (1958) and Guess Who's Coming to Dinner (1967), Spencer Tracy's last film. Rob Reiner actually compared it to his film A Few Good Men, which I have not seen, but is considered to be one of the all time greats.

Overall, Judgment at Nuremberg is an amazing film and a complete essential for anyone who loves films as much as I do. You can watch it here if you have not already done so.

5/5 stars