All links lead to each actor's IMDb page, set to open in a new tab. Another light day. And this will be a light issue of the Daily, as I've spent most of the night completing my review of The Wedding Night (1935). Stars from that movie highlight today's photo stream for Classic Movie Daily subscribers.
TCM TV Alerts through tomorrow at 7 am:
These titles play on TCM's US schedule and all quoted times are for my own local Eastern time zone.
Yesterday I mentioned that Fritz Lang's M (1931) began TCM's Friday programming at 6:00 am. What I left out is that it's the first movie of the first Friday of TCM's "Summer of Darkness."
I used to be a big fan of film noir and still consider many titles among my favorites, even if I often think of them more as crime films than noirs. It's a categorization of film that hasn't held up for me over the years as I find many titles, even some of the more heralded ones, to be a case of style over substance. Yes, film is a visual art, but it's more than visuals alone. If I spend 75-80 minutes waiting for something to happen, and it never does, I don't care how pretty it looks. A lot of the slangier dialogue has also failed to hold up by my ears, much of it great writing, but artificial talk. This is largely why my favored viewing has settled into the previous decade, where the talk rings truer and the stories, though often formulaic, are almost always entertaining.
But we all have our favorites and our not-so-favorites, so to each his own. I am generally less enthusiastic about film noir than most classic film fans, so you're far from alone if you disagree with me. Stick by me for the '30s stuff though! Okay, here are a few I like during this first Friday in June:
—The Letter (1940) is great, even if I prefer Jeanne Eagels' unrestrained histrionics to Bette's more polished version. It's playing at 9:45 am Friday.
—High Sierra (1941) plays at 12:45 pm. This fits my earlier comment about crime movies versus film noir. To me this is the former.
—The Maltese Falcon (1941) at 2:30 pm. Okay, this one holds up (duh!). Even I'm not far enough out there to recommend the excellent pre-Code version or the much maligned Satan Met a Lady over it, though I do enjoy both of the earlier movies as well (Perhaps unnaturally so when it comes to Satan!).
—Johnny Eager (1942) at 5:45 pm. Van Heflin's angsty performance grows on me a bit more every time I see this one.
—Dark Passage (1947) at 11:45 pm. Used to love it when I was a kid and it was one of a handful of oldies PBS would regularly play. Now I'm kind of eh about it, but I'll still watch.
—Born to Kill (1947) at 1:45 am. One of the major noir classics, I really hope TCM squeezes it in again this summer in a better time slot than this (apparently not). If you're going to celebrate film noir this isn't a title that you want to hide.
That's all for today. Got to go give my review of The Wedding Night one last edit before I publish it. Daily subscribers will see it right after this post.
Issue count: Since going Daily on April 6, I've mailed posts to subscribers 60 out of 61 days.