On TCM 10/12/16-My favorite Paul Newman flick The Young Philadelphians (1959) directed by Vincent Sherman—As an aspiring society attorney Judson Lawrence Paul gives rich Billie Burke (Glinda in The Wizard of Oz) smart tax advice while petting her lap dog, defends much underrated actor Robert Vaughn (in a striking Oscar nominated performance here) of a murder charge with sting like cunning, wows beauties Barbara Rush and Alexis Smith with his Paul Newman blue eyes and proves to be a great son to his audience only knowing father, Brain Keith. Watch the Paul Newman eyes explode with even greater intensity when he learns the revealing fact (known to us in the audience) that his father is really regular guy Mike Flanagan (Brian Keith) and not the high society William Lawrence II (Adam West).
A perennial on TCM – Great director Nicholas Ray’s masterpiece Rebel Without a Cause (1955) is a favorite of mine. Love the performances by James Dean, Oscar nominated here Natalie Wood and Sal Mineo. I cannot forget:
- The strong performances by Jim Backus and Ann Doran as Dean’s 50’s suburban parents.
- The introduction of Nick Adams and Dennis Hooper as young punks.
- Later TV series stars William Hopper (to be Paul Drake on Perry Mason) as Natalie’s dad and Edward Platt (to be Chief of Control on Get Smart! as an understanding cop.
- The scenes filmed at the LA Griffith Observatory—Love that touching Sal Mineo line as Plato— “What does he know about man alone?”
In the William Wyler directed The Best Years of Our Lives (1946)-One of my all-time favorite sequences in the history of cinema is when screen great Dana Andrews as down and out war hero/soda jerk veteran Fred Derry takes a walk in a junkyard populated with retired WW 2 aircraft and is lucky to be in the right place at the right time landing a good job where he learns how to recycle the junked war planes into prefabricated homes.
On TCM 10/3/16- Another masterpiece directed by John Huston – Fat City (1972) screenplay by Leonard Garner based on his novel, music by Kris Kristofferson, Cinematography by 3 time Oscar winner Conrad Hall with touching performances by Stacy Keach as aging boxer Billy Tully, Jeff Bridges as Eddie Munger, the 18-year-old hopeful boxer, and Oscar nominated here Susan Tyrrell as Oma, the hard drinking barfly—a cast and crew which transforms the actual Stockton, CA locations into a dismal place rivaling a city painted by artist Edward Hooper. I was lucky enough to screen Fat City introduced by Stacy Keach at the 2016 TCMFF (photo below) and it is very engrossing on the large screen of the TCL Chinese Theatre.
The Larry Storch of 2016 fondly remembers the grandeur of F Troop’s heroic Agarn.
There is nothing like the pleasure of viewing master director Howard Hawk’s Bringing Up Baby (1938) on TCM 10/9/16 and admire the fast talking of “Screwball Comedy” super stars Cary Grant and Katherine Hepburn as they deal with a pet baby leopard “Baby” in Connecticut and a terrier George (played by Asta -a prolific scene stealer if you ask Nick and Nora Charles) who refuses to reveal where he buried the priceless intercostal clavicle bone. Catch the moment when Baby and George become friends!