Monday, April 10, 2017

TCM Classic Film Festival 2017: Day 3 Recap

The Graduate signage at the 2017 TCM Classic Film Festival

Another day in La La Land kicks off with the third day of the 2017 TCM Classic Film Festival. Still weary from the midnight screening of Zardoz (1977), I managed to get up early for the 9 AM screening of The China Syndrome (1979).

This time I went with Carlos who is a huge Michael Douglas fan. After the movie the man himself came out for an interview with Ben Mankiewicz. It was neat to see him in person and to talk about the making of the film. I've seen numerous Michael Douglas films before but something about hearing his voice in real life was quite epic. You could hear his father's voice in his.

Michael Douglas and Ben Mankiewicz

I was entranced by The China Syndrome and hope to do a full review with transcript from the interview here on the blog soon.

Afterwards I made my way to In-N-Out burger for a quick meal and then headed over to Club TCM. I attended Bruce Goldstein's presentation The Art of Subtitling. He poked fun at those who point out how the subtitles to foreign films miss words or are not direct translations. He did a great job explaining why. He used some examples from Panqiue (1946), a French film I had seen the day before. If the subtitles included a word for word translation the text would take up half the screen. See the example in the photo below.

Goldstein went into detail about how foreign films are translated and how the subtitles are positioned on the different scenes. It's really a technical art. You have to accommodate enough time for the viewers to read the text, the subtitle can't take up too much of the screen, it should be accurate for the time, place, culture, characters and plot and the words can't get in the way of the flow of the visuals. Goldstein demonstrated with examples of different styles of subtitling both good and bad. He always discussed the international culture of dubbing. Here in the US we much prefer subtitles but in foreign markets dubbing is preferred. It was an amazing presentation and I'm so glad I attended. Hat tip to Kate Gabrielle who's enthusiasm for this event made me want to go.

High on my list of films to see at the TCM Classic Film Festival was Elia Kazan's America America (1963). I always end up picking one film that most of my friends skip or is generally overlooked. The theater was half full for this screening and I really wish it was a packed house. A three hour film about a Greek immigrant isn't a big sell but this is such a fantastic movie it was one I didn't want to miss.

Especially after I had interviewed the star Stathis Giallelis on the red carpet just a couple days before...

Me interviewing Stathis Giallelis on the red carpet TCMFF

Alicia Malone and Stathis Giallelis

TCM's FilmStruck host Alicia Malone was on hand to interview Stathis Giallelis before the America America screening. While I've written about this film before, I can't miss an opportunity to write about this wonderful event. Stay tuned.

After a three hour drama, it was time for a light comedy...

Best in Show (2000)! I thought this was going to be a controversial pick because the film is only 17 years old. (Ben Mankiewicz poked fun at the newness of the film by falsely claiming that it was the 30th anniversary). I was pleasantly surprised that this screening sold out the bigger of the three theatres at the TCL Chinese Multiplex.

Stars John Michael Higgins, Fred Willard, Bob Balaban and Jim Piddock were all on hand for a pre-screening interview. I've always had a love for this film and it was great fun to hear the cast talk about making the movie. It was a bit awkward that Balaband couldn't speak because he was on voice rest. However everyone made the most of it and it turned out to be a running joke throughout the presentation.

Cast members of Best in Show with Ben Mankiewicz

It got chilly on Hollywood Boulevard. I made my way to the Grauman's Chinese theatre to get my ticket for the screening of The Graduate (1967). 

I had a great chat with Warner Archive's Matt Patterson while I was on my way to get some food. We had such a good conversation that I ran out of time to grab a meal. It was worth it though.

I sat with Danny of and his lovely wife Aubrey for the screening of The Graduate. This was the first time I had seen the film all the way through. I had watched various clips and I knew the ending well. Before the film, Ben Mankiewicz interviewed screenwriter and actor Buck Henry. More on this event to come.

Ben Mankiewicz and Buck Henry

The last recap should be available in a few days. Stay tuned!

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