Tuesday, 28 May 2024

TCM Classic Film Festival celebrates century of Warner Bros


The TCM Classic Film Festival will be even better this year than last, as it finally returns to a pre-pandemic experience with no longer having last year’s requirement that attendees must wear irritating masks during the screenings.

Expressing a sense of optimism, the festival theme is “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet” and the fun begins on April 13th for a four-day indulgence that celebrates film legacies of the stories told and retold over generations.

Though rapidly dwindling, time remains to make plans for a trip to Los Angeles to hang out at the famous Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, the central gathering point for the TCM Classic Film Festival.

The ability to purchase one of the four levels of festival passes may become very limited nearer to the start of the event, and one contemplating a trip would be well-advised to make haste and carefully consider what each type of pass offers.

Anticipation of good times launches on Thursday the 13th and concludes on Sunday, April 16, and in-between there will be more great movies, appearances by legendary stars and filmmakers, presentations and panel discussions, and special events than one could possibly take in.

Kickoff to the 14th annual TCM Classic Film Festival will be a red carpet opening night screening of the classic Western “Rio Bravo” starring John Wayne as a sheriff fending off a gang of armed attackers intent on breaking out a prisoner.

Wayne’s sheriff has a group of unlikely allies in Dean Martin and Ricky Nelson helping to defend the jail, along with help from Angie Dickinson, who by the way will be in attendance to have a conversation with TCM host Ben Mankiewicz about this 1959 film.

Richly filmed in Technicolor, “Rio Bravo” will look better than ever in a world premiere 4k restoration. In 2014, this film was deemed “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant” by the Library of Congress and selected for preservation in the National Film Registry.

A bonus to opening night is that the screening takes place in the crown jewel of theaters built by showman Sid Grauman, the world-famous Chinese Theatre that continues after nearly a century to be a coveted venue for Hollywood premieres.

No trip to Hollywood would be complete without taking in the sidewalks of the Chinese Theatre’s forecourt and the famous footprints, handprints and signatures that dot the cement with a veritable catalog of movie history.

TCM has a fondness for commemorating anniversaries and the spotlight this year is on the 100th anniversary of Warner Bros., which explains the screening of “Casablanca,” one of the most beloved films of all time.

The Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman romantic World War II drama is one of the high points of the Hollywood studio system. What’s not to love about these two stars and a cast of European emigrants populating a restless Moroccan cafe, with refugees desperate to escape the war?

A festival may not be whole without an Alfred Hitchcock film. Personal favorites include “Rear Window,” “North by Northwest,” “Vertigo,” “To Catch a Thief,” and “Psycho.” And yet, there are so many more to add to this list.

The small-town psychological thriller “Shadow of a Doubt” is one of Hitchcock’s personal favorites, and it is being screened for its 80th anniversary in a new 4k restoration.

Better-known now as a popular film director, Ron Howard was once a child actor, probably most recognizable as Opie on “The Andy Griffith Show.” As a young actor, Howard was a lead in the coming-of-age film “American Graffiti,” which is being screened in its 50th anniversary.

Richard Dreyfuss and Howard are part of a group of teenagers spending the last night of the summer of 1962 in their small California town. Writer-director George Lucas followed his cast from the diner to the sock hop, cruising in vintage hot rods to a soundtrack of rock ‘n roll hits.

Each year the Festival pays tribute to a select group of individuals whose work in Hollywood has left a lasting impact on film. Academy Award-winning production designer Patrizia von Brandenstein and actor, dancer, director, artist, and choreographer Russ Tamblyn will be honored.

Von Brandenstein earned critical acclaim for her work on “Six Degrees of Separation” (1993) and the Academy Award for Best Art Direction in “Amadeus” (1984).

Tamblyn’s early training as a gymnast prepared him for one of his earliest roles in “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers” (1954), and subsequently earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor in “Peyton Place” (1957).

All four of these films will be screened at the Festival with introductions from von Brandenstein and Tamblyn. Both will sit down with TCM hosts in Club TCM at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel for extended conversations about their lives and work.

Thinking of the TCM Classic Film Festival as the Super Bowl for movie buffs may not be an exaggeration. A high level of talent is on display and cinephiles should not be disappointed.

Tim Riley writes film and television reviews for Lake County News.

Upcoming Calendar

05.28.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at Library Park
05.29.2024 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm
PG&E virtual town hall
06.01.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at the Mercantile
06.04.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at Library Park
06.05.2024 5:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Vision of Hope Village market
06.08.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at the Mercantile
06.11.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at Library Park
Flag Day
06.15.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at the Mercantile

Mini Calendar



Award winning journalism on the shores of Clear Lake. 



Enter your email here to make sure you get the daily headlines.

You'll receive one daily headline email and breaking news alerts.
No spam.