Thursday, August 26, 2010

The Big Parade (1925)

If you like films of the silent sort, definitely check this one out. It was on TCM the other day and caught my eye as the heroine was played by Renee Adoree who was a silent film star I had often heard of but hadn't actually seen any of her films yet. A long time ago her biography caught my eye as she passed away very young of tuberculosis, after having had a very successful silent film career that did transition well over to talkies. Her eyes are STUNNING and just jump off the screen!

The film was very moving, tells the tale of a young American man who ventures off to fight in World War I, experiences the atrocities of war, and also falls in love with a French woman. Lots of emotions involved here and then more showing his return home to his family having been also physically scarred from war. It's a touching film and apparently was a huge blockbuster back in its day and also was a big inspiration for many future war films. So much so that in 1992 it was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

TCM the new AMC?

So lately I've been noticing a slightly disturbing trend on Turner Classic Movies (TCM) that is reminiscent of what American Movie Classics (AMC) did back in the day. More and more I'm seeing movies made post 50's being aired, and while I of course love all types of films they are not the reason I tune into TCM. Give me my black and white flicks damnit!

I remember when I was in junior high/high school I used to watch AMC all the time. That is where I first started my romance with classic films after having been exposed to a few by my parents growing up. AMC was where I found out there was much more to that world than Singing in the Rain, My Fair Lady and Knights of the Rounds Table. Then I discovered another channel that provided the same types of films from the 20's-50's, TCM! Hooray! Two channels to gobble up old time cinema!

Then I remember noticing AMC was switching up their offerings. Movies like E.T. The Extra Terrestrial, and Jaws started popping up every now and again and eventually more recent "film classics" were all that was being shown. Again, I LOVE those movies but where was I to go if I wanted a good ol' fashioned black and white fix? I noticed those films were mostly being played at ungodly hours of the day when I just couldn't watch, and this was pre-DVR days. TCM however was still my hero!

That is until now. Sadness. Of course I'm still able to see a good ol' flick on TCM, but like AMC started doing those black and white classics seem to be airing less and less to make room for films that were made in the 60's and 70's. Before long will I not be able to see ANYTHING from the Golden Age of Hollywood?? I used to be able to turn on the TV and go straight to TCM to see what was playing and now I feel like every time I do I just want to change it because I'm just not interested in a film I could catch on any other channel.

I guess I should just start making good use of that DVR and hope that at least my black and white flicks will still be aired, even at those ungodly hours of the day!