This week's TCM picks are chock full of great films noir, including Gloria Grahame and Humphrey Bogart in director Nicholas Ray's Hollywood noir, In a Lonely Place (photo above). There's also a supernatural romance featuring comedy legend Ernie Kovacs (his 100th birth date is Wednesday) and a weekend of films that honor Screen Actor's Guild lifetime achievement award winners. Note: All times are ET and the highlighted text has links to full-length articles.
Here's a link to the complete schedule for Jan. 21-Jan. 27.
Monday Pick of the Day
|Sidney Poitier in Edge of the City (1957).|
Tuesday Pick of the Day
|Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall in To Have and Have Not (1944)|
|Kathryn Grayson and Mario Lanza in That Midnight Kiss (1949)|
Wednesday Pick of the Day
Thursday Pick of the Day
|June Allyson, Hedy Lamarr, and Robert Walker in Her Highness and the Bellboy (1945)|
Singing Sweethearts Alert
|Nelson Eddy and Jeanette MacDonald in Naughty Marietta (1935)|
Hero of the Week
By the early 1960s, the sword-and-sandals movies were mostly played out in Hollywood, but Italian filmmakers continued the genre by featuring mythical strongman Maciste, who was re-named Hercules for the overseas market (the whole Maciste/Hercules thing is kind of complicated, but Wikipedia has a nice summary). These movies, which featured dubbed dialogue and plenty of action, were popular drive-in theater fare, and they later became a staple of late-night TV.
TCM is airing a night of Hercules films on Thursday, Jan. 24 starting with Hercules, Samson, and Ulysses (1963) at 8 pm in which the big guy (Kirk Morris) teams up with fellow Greek hero Ulysses (Enzo Cerusico) and Biblical strongman Samson (Iloosh Khoshabe billed here as Richard Lloyd). Other highlights include former Tarzan Gordon Scott taking over the toga in Tyrant of Lydia Against the Son of Hercules (1963) at 9:45 pm and Hercules Against the Barbarian (1960) at 3:15 am, which has an intriguing plot and great production values.
Friday Pick of the Day
|Wallace Ford and John Garfield in The Breaking Point (1950)|
The Breaking Point (1950) at noon Friday, Jan. 25: This second screen version of To Have and Have Not is the superior film. Michael Curtiz directs with his usual verve and both John Garfield as a desperate skipper and the criminally underrated Juano Hernandez as his first mate are superb throughout. Part of a daytime lineup of movies starring Patricia Neal.
TCM is celebrating the 25th anniversary of the Screen Actors Guild Awards with a night of films from lifetime achievement award winners. The fantastic late night lineup starts out with Barbara Stanwyck in the ahead-of-its-time pre-code film Baby Face (1933) at 11:45 pm Friday, Jan. 25, followed by James Stewart in the seminal Western Broken Arrow (1950) at 1:15 am. Edward G. Robinson does a hilarious self parody as a gangster who is forced to hide out in monastery in Brother Orchid (1940) at 3 am. Finally, Gregory Peck gives a fine performance as writer C.S. Forester's Naval hero in Captain Horatio Hornblower (1951) at 4:30 am.
Set Your DVR for Friday Late Night
|Barbara Stanwyck in a publicity still for Baby Face (1933)|
Saturday Pick of the Day
|James Cagney in White Heat (1949)|
White Heat (1949) at 12:30 pm Saturday, Jan. 26: SAG Lifetime Achievement Award winner James Cagney gives a sensational performance as neurotic gangster Cody Jarrett in this documentary-style noir from director Raoul Walsh. Cagney was always a fearless actor, but this is perhaps his gutsiest performance with the famous prison dining hall scene and the literally explosive conclusion.
Alternative Saturday Pick
|Katharine Hepburn and Cary Grant practice for a scene in Holiday (1938)|
|Angela Lansbury in one of her fabulous costumes for The Harvey Girls (1946)|
Noir Alley, Jan. 27th edition
|Gloria Grahame and director Nicholas Ray on the set of In a Lonely Place (1950)|
TCM is treating viewers to a Sunday night version of Noir Alley that includes two of the best examples of the noir genre. First, former POW Robert Ryan goes on the hunt for the senior officer (noir icon Van Heflin) who betrayed him in Act of Violence (1949) at 8 pm. Next is director Nicholas Ray's masterpiece about love and urban isolation, In a Lonely Place (1950) at 9:45 pm.