5 Things I am Looking Forward to … May 2012

Well it is about 25 hours late, but you get the idea … looking ahead to the merry merry month of May, these are a few highly anticipated cinematic events for me.

1. CANNES

Now going but checking out others’ coverage of it !

 

2. FILM RELEASES

No brainer here, THE AVENGERS (saving for next week); in addition a showing of Deep Blue Sea at my local (Pelham Picture House)

 

3. Picks of the Month: HOME VIDEO

This list includes a few titles (indicated as *) that I have yet to see (but plan to)

  • 5/2 The Tim Burton Collection (Amazon.c0m), About a Boy, Pariah *, Haywire
  • 5/8 La Heine (CRITERION) *
  • 5/22 Sherlock Series 2
  • 5/29 Coriolanus *, We Need to Talk about Kevin *

 

4. On TCM

We are SO spoiled to have this channel. I feel like every month it tops itself! Here are some of the highlights (I actually have omitted a WHOLE lot 🙂 ):

Guest Programmer Debra Winger (5/22)

  •  Night of the Iguana
  • Wings of Desire
  • Rififi
  • Gilda


Cult Movies

  • Ladies They Talk About (5/29)
  • Doctor in the House (5/31)

Star Crossed Romances (5/5)

My pick of the lot: Camille, Written on the Wind, Waterloo Bridge

TCM Imports

  • 5/13 Autumn Sonata
  • 5/20 The Rules of the Game

Memorial Day Marathon (5/27)

… oh yeah and Joel McCrea is the “Star of the Month.”

 

5. THE FILM SOCIETY OF LINCOLN CENTER PRESENTS …

There is a lot of stuff going on at the film society; among the items of paramount interest to me are:

As part of this year’s citywide Noël Coward festival, we trace the breadth of Coward’s film work, from silent and sound adaptations of his early plays to Hollywood’s take on some later ones to the golden age of his multi-film collaboration with the young David Lean and, finally, his celebrated cameo appearances in other people’s films.

I have already purchased my double feature tickets for Brief Encounter and Blithe Spirit!

 

And with that, I am done for May. See you again in June!

 

Lots of Stuff Going on at TCM

As I do at the beginning of each month, I took a visit over to TCM’s movie site to see what is going to be featured this month on the channel. Cannot say that I should be too surprised but this month has a great deal on offer on TCM.com as well as the television channel! Here are just a couple of highlights:

Scorcese Presents: A new column to the site and the monthly Now Playing guide will feature the award-winning director will provide insights on the people of classic cinema.

Classic Horror: Monday nights will be dedicated to classic horror. My recommendations: Freaks, Dead of Night, The Uninvited, The Innocents, Night of the Living Dead, Curse of the Cat People. I am personally looking forward to catching Carnival of Souls and Repulsion.

Star of the Month: A regular feature; this month TCM will highlight the films of  Buster Keaton, silent film star.

Tuesdays in October with maverick director Nicholas Ray: In honor of the auteur’s 100th birthday, the evening slot on Tuesday nights is dedicated to a host of his films. My personal faves of the lot are They Live by Night (1949), In a Lonely Place (1950) and On Dangerous Ground (1951).  Lest we forget the seminal teen-angst drama Rebel Without a Cause (1955) with James Dean and Johnny Guitar (1954) with Joan Crawford.

The Essentials – this months schedule has some great titles including Ball of Fire, An American in Paris and Cat People. I am looking forward to seeing The Bicycle Thief.

I know that some of you out there are not huge classic cinema fans, but let this month be the time you change all of that.

Hopefully these highlights will provide you with a wonderful entree into this world!


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Programming Notice – TCM Presents the Work of Merchant-Ivory Productions

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of Merchant-Ivory productions, Turner Classic Movies (TCM) is holding a month-long tribute, airing movies every Thursday night for the month of September. Unfortunately I was unable to watch the first night of movies (9/8) because I was attending a wedding but I am determined to go all in starting tonight.

The lineup for this evening’s programming is:

  • Remains of the Day, The (1993) – currently on
  • Howards End (1992)
  • A Room With a View (1985)
  • Maurice (1987)

The directing/producing team of James Ivory and Ismail Merchant. Their trademark is a collection of films that are understated adaptations of novels. Often these films were written for the screen by long time collaborator Ruth Prawer Jhabvala.

Easily my favorite of the bunch is A Room With a View with Howards End and Remains of the Day. I do however easily concede that these films are not for everyone. For some, the pacing and restraint shown in several of their films can leave one feeling a bit overanxious for something more active to appear on screen. For me the strength of the performances more than makes up

Consult the TCM Program Guide for a full layout of the schedule.

A Shout Out to Movie Morlocks and SUTS!

On my blog I often highlight features, programming information, etc. that comes from the one-stop source of all things classic in cinema – Turner Classic Movies. On occasion I have also mentioned (and bookmarked) their blog, Movie Morlocks.

For those of you who are not familiar with what is going on this month on TCM, they are having their annual 31-day Summer Under the Stars (SUTS) in which they run a 24 hour marathon of a particular performer. It is a wonderful opportunity to catch a series of films from a single performer. In fact you will get the chance to even see a performance that you may have overlooked.

You may now be wondering how this relates to the blog I mentioned in the first paragraph. Well as a complementary piece to the television programming for the month, TCM’s Movie Morlocks has dedicated a week’s worth of blog posts to the life and work of often overlooked actors. This year it is Woody Strode’s turn.

For my part, what I knew about Woody Strode, I learned in passing from my father. But for years, I did not think of him too much within the context of the history of American cinema nor did I fully appreciate the impact he had during his time and the trail that he blazed for those stars who came after him. I thank the Morlocks for shining a light on a performer who nowadays might be often overlooked but should never be forgotten.

So my recommendation is for you to take a gander over to the Movie Morlocks site and read more about Woody Strode.

*Oh and look out August 13th (Friday) for 24 hours dedicated to Robert Ryan; other marathons of note include:

  • 8/14 Gene Tierney
  • 8/21 Paul Newman
  • 8/27 Olivia deHavilland

Programming Notice: East of Eden next Tuesday at 8PM EST

John Steinbeck

It was just this past week when I mentioned my affinity for the literary works of John Steinbeck and how those efforts translated to the screen. Well you will have an opportunity to view it for yourself next week. On TCM (where else), they are showing East of Eden Tuesday night (November 3, 2009) at 8:00PM Eastern Standard Time.

In fact – Tuesday night’s theme in primetime is called Based on John Steinbeck and features the classic films The Grapes of Wrath, Of Mice and Men, The Red Pony, and Tortilla Flat.