"Now Listen to Me..."
Just some thoughts on current happenings:
There are 12 recommended films to watch on Turner Classic Movies in the U.S. this month:
Film noir has few representatives as dourly defeatist or as forcefully communicative on the subject of human relations than 1945's Scarlet Street, previously reviewed here. Edward G. Robinson as Christopher Cross, will take his fateful walk down that dark and foreboding street Wednesday, July 5 (early morning) at 5:30am PST.
Later that same day, TCM will show one of the finest westerns ever made, Top Ten Western #4 in fact, Sam Peckinpah's elegiac Ride the High Country, riding into TCM territory Wednesday, July 5 at 1pm PST.
Immediately following Ride the High Country is another of Sam Peckinpah's recognisable stylistic endeavours. Although not nearly as meaningful or resonant as his earlier film, 1972's The Getaway, previously reviewed here, still punches solidly above its pay grade. The Getaway will ensue Wednesday, July 5 at 2:45pm PST and again Saturday, July 15 at 9:15pm PST.
Another film that severely rocked the Production Code in its time was Alfred Hitchcock's 1960 horror sensation Psycho, previously reviewed here. The terror will begin Thursday, July 6 at 9am PST and repeat again on Wednesday, July 26 at 10pm PST.
Anthony Mann’s low-budget, up close and personal foray into the war genre is an artistic triumph of the highest order, 1957’s Men in War, previously reviewed here. One can "see action" Friday, July 7 at 12:45pm PST.
Rarely does an atmosphere of such overpowering dread subsume a cinematic story so completely as it does in 1943's The Seventh Victim.
A young woman (portrayed as a fetching innocent by Kim Hunter) goes searching for her missing sister (enigmatically played by Jean Brooks) in New York City's Greenwich Village and stumbles upon a satanic cult of devil worshipers putting both of their lives at risk. Mark Robson, who directed a number of these Val Lewton produced gems is himself at the peak of his considerable creative powers. This devilishly striking combination of horror and film noir was a previous TCM recommendation and reviewed here. The fate of both sisters will be determined Thursday, July 13 at 7am PST.
Here's a short clip: Eerily foreshadowing the shower scene from Hitchcock's Psycho.
My next TCM recommendation comes with a caveat: If you haven't seen the film before, please do so *before* reading my review. Doctor Zhivago is the latest in a series of Top Ten Fool's Gold: The Overrated and will be shown on TCM Monday, July 17 at 5pm PST.
John Ford's most expressively emotional western, The Searchers, previously reviewed here is Top Ten Western #2 and is as likely as any film to provide one with a truly unforgettable, rich and rewarding movie watching experience. The journey will begin Thursday, July 20 (early morning) at 3am PST.
Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo is loaded with multi-faceted insights and hidden rumination on human relationships, providing viewers with much to ponder long after this tale of romantic obsession ends. This cinematic treasure was previously opened here, and will avail its visual and aural riches Wednesday, July 26 at 5pm PST.
My next TCM recommendation is 1955's modern-day take on the American Western, Bad Day at Black Rock, previously reviewed here. This exceptional suspense-thriller's day will begin Saturday, July 29 at 1:45pm PST.
Immediately following Bad Day at Black Rock is a really bad day for anyone who encounters Them! (the giant mutant ants that is). The motion picture, however, is one of the best creature features ever made, and also a previous recommendation here. Them! will march on TCM Saturday, July 29 at 3:15pm PST.
TCM's current monthly schedule can be confirmed by clicking on any of the above images. For those who live in parts of the U.S. other than the western region, the time zone can be adjusted in the upper right-hand corner of TCM's programme.
This month's Happy Birthday shout-out goes to one of the most astute, learned and highly entertaining film critics around, Dan Sallitt, who has become a filmmaker as well.
He turns 62 on July 27th. One can check out information regarding the low-budget projects he's produced in addition to his written film criticisms on his site by clicking on the image.
July's Soundtrack recommendation is to Walkabout composed by John Barry.
The film's haunting and beautifully poetic original soundtrack was previously considered lost but was recently re-discovered and sourced from the original stereo master tapes. The resulting CD care of Roundtable in Australia, has finally preserved John Barry's landmark score to Nicolas Roeg’s 1971 masterpiece. It is currently available directly from Roundtable in Australia. For more information including international ordering, click on the accompanying image.
This month's Blu-ray selection is the previous TCM recommendation Ride the High Country, recently made available from Warner Archive (North America Region Free). This is an absolutely gorgeous transfer that can be ordered through Amazon.com by clicking on the image.