Heads-up re: TCM, 8/9

Today TCM rolls out what is perhaps its most high-profile “Summer Under the Stars” schedule yet with 24 hours of films starring Cary Grant. Now, Grant likely needs little or no introduction, but just in case, here’s Pauline Kael’s gushy analysis of the man she refers to as hailing from “Dream City”.

You’re probably just now getting up, in which case you’re not going to be able to catch Grant and Irene Dunne in Leo McCarey’s The Awful Truth (1937; 91 minutes) at 9:45AM. To compensate for the missed opportunity, you’re going to spend some of this afternoon watching Grant negotiate several implausibly tough situations during a Hitchcock double feature: To Catch a Thief (1955; 106 minutes) at 5:00PM, followed by Notorious (1946; 101 minutes) at 7:00PM. Notorious is especially essential viewing, as it’s Hitchcock’s best espionage film.

You’re also perplexed by the lack of Howard Hawks comedies, in which Grant obviously excelled, so you figure you’ll try to see a Grant film you’ve never seen before, like the Richard Brooks-directed Crisis (1950; 95 minutes) at 12:00AM; it’s probably the only Grant film ever to be banned in Mexico (so sayeth IMDB).

TCM is offering 13 convincing reasons to enjoy the great indoors today, particularly with the oppressive mugginess outside. And if you’re on the verge of losing your cable for a good long while, you’ll want to milk these opportunities for all they’re worth while they still present themselves to you. The rest of the loaded schedule is here.

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