When knowing I’m attending the Turner Classic Movies Classic Film Festival, it feels like a delectable smorgasbord is spread out before me. I gorge myself on the Hollywood experience by coming out early, sightseeing, staying with friends, attending the ‘unofficial’ start of my TCMFF with Kimberly Truhler’s fashion presentation ~ many’s new tradition… and going to our own FaceBook page’s pool party at the Roosevelt Hotel. I strolled through WeHo, visited final resting places, had drinks along Hollywood Boulevard, re-connected with friends, got invited to a private movie screening on the 20th Century lot, and walked miles from Beachwood Canyon all the down the Sunset Strip to Carney’s ( for a New York hot dog, no less ). Click on EACH photo to see each adventure . . .
There are pre-fest activities worked in. We’ve all had weeks of torture deciding what to see ~ and no, TCM does NOT make it easy ~ We’ve coordinated with friends and carved our schedules in stone; or etched them in tissue paper and let our hearts take us where it wants to go. This particular festival was a big one b’cuz it is the tenth anniversary TCM is holding this event. I was lucky enough to be invited into TCM’s new Ambassador program and captured what I could as a TCM Ambassador. But when Thursday comes and the festival begins…we all approach that glorious smorgasbord in earnest.
MY THREE FAVORITE MOVIES ~
It’s movies, movies, movies for the TCM weekend that goes all too fast. I saw films new to me and old favorites. I, again, realize there’s something about seeing the familiar on a big screen that makes it magic. The magic comes through movie stars I thought I knew.
( Marilyn in “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes” is a particular case in point that absolutely blew me out of my seat, and I’ve already seen the movie…but not like this! And I thought I knew her. I see I did not ). Out of all I saw this weekend, three movies stood out for different reasons: fun to share, fun to discover and fun to savor.
It was fun to share: “The Bachelor and the Bobby Soxer” with a crowd. The movie is sweet fun. I love to laugh. And to paraphrase Sidney Greenstreet’s Kasper Guttman in “The Maltese Falcon”: I’m a person who loves to laugh with a crowd who loves to laugh. It’s a good solid comedy with three pros in Myrna Loy~ who can deliver a line…or wordless attitude like nobody’s business. Shirley Temple ~ a pro since she was six, and Cary Grant. Oh man, is he ever the draw. Handsome, dashing and willing to look foolish. It was fun to discover: “Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans.” I took the discovery seriously. This is a film held in high regard by many classic film fans. And not being a big silent film fan, I was a little intimidated. I made sure to come early to queue up giving up a block of time to be sure I got in. The story was simple, the filmmaking brilliant.
I…was…blown…away by F.W. Murnau’s filmmaking. There was a shot when George O’Brien was in the canoe going through the night looking for his wife, and at one point the boat sails right towards the camera, it made me gasp. Look, I’m going to be no good to you writing about this classic. But if you’re the least bit curious about an elegant take on this film, read my friend ~ Wendy’s ~ post. She gave me tips on what to look out for and she’s more eloquent than I. This 1927 film had good performances by the marital triangle of George O’Brien, Janet Gaynor and Margaret Livingston. It was fun to savor: “Holiday.” What a bittersweet, romantic comedy with edge. We’ve got Cary Grant again ladies. [ Siiiigh! ] This time he’s a young man with the Bohemian idea of playing and exploring life while he’s young and working when he’s older. Of course having a fiancee who’s the daughter of a Wall Street banker, Grant’s ideas are going to go over just swell. But she’s got a sister…an independent thinking sister…a Katharine Hepburn of a sister who is on Cary’s side as she tries to not get swallowed up in the family’s religion of money and class. It all plays out achingly wonderfully with Grant and Hepburn evenly matched and director George Cukor tying it all together with his usual adept touch. A good supporting cast helps immensely and Lew Ayres is particularly poignant.
Apart from the movies I saw and the drinks I drank and the movie candy I devoured, my favorite moment of the festival was sitting w/Isabella Sanders Miller to unabashedly discuss a movie I recently found out was a mutual favorite of both of ours: “VERTIGO.” I was happy she sat with an old fogey like me and relished the uninterrupted quiet time of Club TCM as we talked about the movie…totally agreeing and totally being understood about Hitchcock’s movie. ( Take a moment to read her thoughts on the festival here ).
I guess THAT, in a nutshell, is what the TCM Classic Film Festival is all about. We might not like the same films or genres or eras, but the classic film community has one thing in common: understanding and being understood by others. Thanks so much for looking at all my photos. The festival is just so much fun with people who understand you.
And by the by…I play hostess to nine classic film buddies, who graciously share their memories of the 2019 TCM Film Festival on my blog. I ask them the same questions I asked myself about the festival: what were their three favorite films and what was their favorite moment(s) of the festival. Won’t you please put some time aside to check them out? This photo will take you there. ThanxXx again!
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