Wednesday, April 12, 2017

TCM Classic Film Festival 2017: Day 4 Recap

And with a snap of the finger, TCMFF was over. Per my yearly tradition, I took it easy on day #4 of the festival in order to recuperate. I had to skip the early morning screening of Cock of the Air (1932) in order to sleep, pack and get a bit of writing in. I discovered that the easier I go on my festival schedule, the more fun I have. You won't have the best time of your life if you're tired and hungry.

Sunday kicked off with a nice chat over coffee with Marya and Noralil of TCM. I love spending time with these ladies.

Then I headed to Club TCM. I caught most of the Conversation with Leonard Maltin event. I sat in the way back and I noticed that this year they had small screens so you could watch the event even if you're view is obscured. These projections make a huge difference. Kudos to TCM for this idea!

I stayed at Club TCM to stake out a good spot for the Conversation with Dick Cavett that followed. I sat with Kate Gabrielle, Casey and Karen and we had the perfect vantage point to watch Illeana Douglas interview Dick Cavett. No more craning my neck or fighting for a seat like last year!

I'll be sharing an in-depth report on this event soon. I have to say, of all of the Club TCM interviews this was by far my favorite. Cavett was charming, funny and had the best stories to tell. Afterwards there was a signing for his book Brief Encounters (books sold by my favorite bookstore Larry Edmunds!) and a photo opportunity.

Dick Cavett loves his fans and he seemed to be having a ball. One of my favorite moments was when a TCM staffer was spelling out my name to Cavett and he responded "I know how to spell it!". People often bungle up my name or they call me Rachel instead. It's one of my biggest pet peeves. Cavett knew how to spell Raquel and for that I'm forever grateful. I brought up Raquel Welch and he said that he knew her well and went on tour with her. In addition to interviewing her on his show of course!

Cavett loved taking photos with fans and did several funny poses. My favorite part of this year's TCMFF was all the time I got with Dick Cavett: interviewing him on the red carpet, watching his Club TCM interview, interacting with him at the book signing and even walking past him at 25 Degrees at the Hollywood Roosevelt hotel. I've been a big fan of him for years and this was more than I ever dreamed of.

Afterwards a group of us headed to the Egyptian for a screening of What's Up, Doc? (1972). We got the news earlier that Bob Newhart would not be attending TCMFF for the screening of Hell is for Heroes (1962). I was in the mood for a comedy so it worked out perfectly.

Dave Karger interviewed director Peter Bogdanovich before the screening. A full report to come on this blog very soon. I enjoyed this film immensely. It was the perfect way to cap off TCMFF especially considering I was traveling to San Francisco the very next day and the film takes place there. Unfortunately...

It wasn't the last film for me. The final one was Lady in the Dark (1944) projected on nitrate at the Egyptian. While many people love the Egyptian, it's my least favorite of all the TCMFF theatres. It's always cold in there and the seats are squeaky and a little uncomfortable. And the film. Well. I just plain didn't like it. I found it quite boring and rather strange. It's very much of its era and had some rather sexist overtones. The film got a mixed reaction from the crowd. Some friends of mine loved it and others were either lukewarm about it or hated it outright. I enjoyed the fantastic Edith Head costumes, including Ginger Rogers' sequined dress with fur lining, but little else. I'd give this film another try but it's a rarity so this was my only shot until it becomes available on DVD or Blu-Ray. I could see why everyone loves nitrate so much. It had a very 3D like quality. I don't have an eye for this kind of stuff so nitrate lovers definitely appreciated that element more than I could. The best part of this whole event was actress Rose McGowan's intro. She gave a very heartfelt tribute to Robert Osborne. I loved how she said that Osborne's spirit lives within all of us who love classic movies.

And that's a wrap on Day #4. I have lots more to share with you including my overall thoughts on how this year's festival went down and more in-depth posts about some of the screenings and special events I attended. Stay tuned for more tales from Hollywood.

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