TCM’s 31 Days of Oscar: CMH Picks for Week Two (Feb 8)

 

Turner Classic Movies: 31 Days of Oscar
CMH Picks: Week Two

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Sunday February 8th: Gaslight at Midnight EST

Gaslight Poster

Ingrid Bergman, Charles Boyer, and Joseph Cotten in Gaslight (1944, George Cukor director)

This is one of those movies where you are in the theater (or on the laptop) thinking: “Dang, those were some on-point performances.” And the Academy certainly agreed with you, as Charles Boyer and  Angela Lansbury (in her debut role) both received acting nominations while the star of the show, Ingrid Bergman, took home the gold.

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Monday February 9th: Best Years of Our Lives at 8:00pm EST

the_best_years_of_our_lives_1946 poster

Frederic March, Myrna Loy, Dana Andrews, and Teresa Wright star in The Best Years of Our Lives (1946, William Wyler director)

This might be my favorite Hollywood produced war-film ever, even though it has little to do with the actual war. Instead of focusing on the battlefront, we watch a group of returning soldiers and the difficulties of reintegrating back into a home that had clearly moved on while they were fighting “over there.”

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Tuesday February 10th: Charade at 6:00pm EST

charade posterCary Grant and Audrey Hepburn star in Charade (1963, Stanley Donen director)

This was the first movie I watched after I found out that Cary Grant was the original choice for James Bond. Man, he would have been such a great Bond…

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Wednesday February 11th: The Bicycle Thief at 12:15am EST

The bicycle thief posterThe Bicycle Thief (1948, Vittorio deSica director)

The seminal work of post-WWII Italy’s Italian neo-realism movement, The Bicycle Thief is not something I would advise you to watch if you are looking for mere escapism. Go into this film prepared to think, feel, and empathize. It can be quite a moving experience.

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Thursday February 12th: The Third Man at 9:30pm EST

The Third Man psterJoseph Cotten and Orson Welles in The Third Man (1949, Carol Reed director)

This movie has one of the most haunting speeches regarding the nature of man. To quote Harry Lime (played by Orson Welles): “Don’t be so gloomy. After all it’s not that awful. Like the fella says, in Italy for thirty years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder, and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and the Renaissance. In Switzerland they had brotherly love – they had 500 years of democracy and peace, and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock.”

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Friday February 13th: What Ever Happened to Baby Jane 1:15pm EST

Whatever Happened to Baby JAbeBette Davis and Joan Crawford in What Ever Happened to Baby Jane (1962, Robert Aldrich director)

As much as I adore Joan Crawford, Bette Davis is the reason to return to this film over and over. Her portrayal of the “Baby Jane” Hudson is the perfect cocktail of campy, creepy, terrifying and heart breaking. I guess in this instance, you can call me “team Bette”.

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Saturday February 14th: The Red Balloon at 8:00pm EST

The ed Baloon mvie posterThe Red Ballon (1956, A. Lamorisse) director

Fun and whimsical, the 34-minute film tells the story of a French boy and his sentient balloon. Although this film can be viewed through a variety of differing theoretical lenses, I actually want you to ignore that fact and simply marvel at the beauty of the now completely changed Belleville neighborhood of Paris. The beauty of its quaint bakeries, shops, and even the famed Y-shaped staircase situated just beyond the café “Au Repos de la Montagne,” are all gone and in their place is a unsightly bevy of modern-day high rises and bland parks.

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Minoo Allen for Classic Movie Hub

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