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Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Friends and family surprise Turner Classic Movies host Robert Osborne at the 2014 TCM Classic Film Festival with a tribute to his twenty years with the network.

Director: Sean Cameron
Stars: Robert Osborne, Alex Trebek, Eva Marie Saint
Certificate: Passed Drama | Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A female blackmailer with a disfiguring facial scar meets a plastic surgeon who offers her the possibility of looking like a normal woman.

Director: George Cukor
Stars: Joan Crawford, Melvyn Douglas, Conrad Veidt
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

Documentary about the making of the 1939 MGM classic film The Wizard of Oz. Includes interviews of cast and crew members, their families and fans of the film.

Director: Jack Haley Jr.
Stars: Angela Lansbury, Mervyn LeRoy, Ray Bolger
Comedy | Fantasy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

To gain entry to Heaven, a ghost attempts to reunite a divorcing couple as a good deed.

Director: Norman Z. McLeod
Stars: Constance Bennett, Roland Young, Billie Burke
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Nick and his partner Al stage a payroll holdup. Al is shot and Nick kills a policeman. Nick hides out at a public pool, where he meets Peg Dobbs. They go back to her apartment and he forces her family to hide him from the police manhunt.

Director: John Berry
Stars: John Garfield, Shelley Winters, Wallace Ford
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

An aviator and band leader who is always getting his group fired for his flirtatious behavior with the female guests soon finds himself falling for an engaged woman.

Director: Thornton Freeland
Stars: Dolores del Rio, Gene Raymond, Raul Roulien
Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Journalist Steve O'Malley wants to write a biography of a national hero who died when his car ran off a bridge. Steve receives conflicting reports and tales that make him question what the truth about the hero is.

Director: George Cukor
Stars: Spencer Tracy, Katharine Hepburn, Richard Whorf
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A Los Angeles socialite kills a man while home alone one night and claims he was an intruder she did not know. It seems like a clear case of self defense until the story hits the papers and people connected to the dead man come forward.

Director: Vincent Sherman
Stars: Ann Sheridan, Lew Ayres, Zachary Scott
Raffles (1939)
Certificate: Passed Adventure | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Man about town and First Class cricketer A.J. Raffles keeps himself solvent with daring robberies. Meeting Gwen from his schooldays and falling in love all over again, he spends the weekend... See full summary »

Directors: Sam Wood, William Wyler
Stars: David Niven, Olivia de Havilland, Dame May Whitty
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

An unscrupulous movie producer uses an actress, a director and a writer to achieve success.

Director: Vincente Minnelli
Stars: Lana Turner, Kirk Douglas, Walter Pidgeon
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 Himself - Host / ... (105 episodes, 2006-2012)
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9 April 2001 (USA)  »

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Featured in TCM: Twenty Classic Moments (2014) See more »

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Turner Classic Movies intro to classic film for novices
24 March 2013 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This show has been running since 2001 on Turner Classic Movies on Saturday nights at 8pm. It usually debuts immediately after Turner Classic Movies' (TCM's) tribute to Oscar in February, runs 21 or 22 original episodes, and then repeats until Oscar month begins again (February 1) during which all TCM regular programming is preempted for the tribute to Oscar. I believe it is also preempted during "Summer Under The Stars" month in August during which TCM dedicates each day of the month to a different star.

This really isn't a "show" in the traditional sense. What occurs is a host or hosts have about a one to two minute introduction to the film, and maybe discuss why it is a classic. Then the movie follows, then there is a one-two minute conclusion about the film done by the host or hosts.

For the first five seasons, 2001-2005, there was one host. Directors Rob Reiner, then Sydney Pollack, then Peter Bogdanovich hosted the show. Since 2006 it has been TCM host Robert Osborne co-hosting with a series of entertainment figures. Molly Haskell and Carrie Fisher co-hosted for one year each in 2006 and 2007 respectively. Then, in November 2007, Rose McGowan was one of the guest programmers during TCM's guest programmer month. She did so well during her four movie slot and clicked so well with Robert Osborne that TCM invited her to co-host The Essentials during 2008. Now, Molly and Carrie may have come across a bit angry during their stints, but at least they seemed knowledgeable. Rose's year was an unmitigated disaster in my humble opinion, unable to do much more than agree with whatever Robert said. So much for TCM's experiment at drawing in the younger crowd with a younger host. For the next three years Alec Baldwin was co-hosting with Robert. In spite of fears from many corners that he might erupt into an anti-Republican rant and start throwing furniture around like the Samsonite gorilla, Alec was a perfect gentleman, had great opinions and observations often opposite that of Robert's and was just a genuine joy to have around.

In 2012 Drew Barrymore began the first of what will be at least a two year stint as co-host, and I have mixed feelings about her performance so far. She seems to click well with Robert yet she sometimes has weird observations like wanting to CGI out the guns in "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" and replace them with walkie talkies! Well folks, you can't say it's dull.

As for the movies picked, they run from the silent era - Steamboat Bill Junior, Modern Times, City Lights, Sunrise - to more recent films. For example, 1982's Tootsie was just recently one of The Essentials. For the most part though, the films are from the Studio Era, roughly 1930-1960, are "A-list" films, and demonstrate something important about filmmaking. In other words, if you want to see what long extinct Mascot Pictures was up to in 1932, or you are in the mood for a Ken Maynard western, this is not the time or the place on TCM to do so.


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