Sunday, March 22, 2015

Ooh, it's Joan Crawford's birthday tomorrow

And thankfully, TCM aren't giving us her MGM movies. Not that those movies are necessarily bad; it's just that Joan Crawford movies were so much more fun once she went to Warner Bros. and started going way over the top. Her first Warner Bros. movie, Mildred Pierce, finishes tomorrow's TCM salute at 6:00 PM. In fact, TCM will be looking at Crawford's post-MGM career in reverse chronological order.

Also under that Warner Bros. contract was Flamingo Road, which TCM will be showing at 2:00 PM. Sure, Joan was too old for the role she's playing, but she gives it everything she's got and makes the movie worth a watch.

Crawford did return to MGM for the hilarious Torch Song, which you can catch tomorrow at 10:30 AM. Of course, the movie is hilarious precisely because it was not intended to be a comedy. I have no idea what anybody making this movie was thinking, but thankfully they made the movie anyway.

The juicy What Ever Happened to Baby Jane sees Crawford going up against the equally volcanic Bette Davis at 8:15 AM. Sparks fly and it's the audience that benefits from this.

Finally, the day kicks off with The Caretakers at 6:30 AM, featuring Crawford as the head nurse at a mental institution. This one starts with a bang, as Polly Bergen suffers a nervous breakdown in an unintentionally humorous way. Robert Stack also shows up as the new head doctor who clashes with Crawford's style; Herbert Marshall near the end of his career plays the boss of both of them.

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