Monday, April 13, 2015

TCM Guest Programmer, April 2015: Mo Rocca

We've reached that day of the month when TCM is putting up its monthly Guest Programmer to sit down with Robert Osborne and discuss four of his or her favorite movies. This month, that programmer is Mo Rocca, a writer/commentator whom I first remember on one of those snarky list show specials, probabaly VH1's I Love the 70s (or 80s), which look at a bunch of related events (in the case of the VH1 shows everything happened in the same calendar year; for other shows it's often a Top 10 countdown) and have Z-list celebrities make unfunny snarky comments about the things. I tend not to care for any of the commentators on shows like this, and often wonder why they're any more qualified than anybody else to be pontificating on the subject of the day. At least Rocca was far less obnoxious than Mario Cantone on the VH1 shows, though. Mario Cantone was another Guest Programmer some years back, and I found him irritating even in that capacity.

Anyhow, Rocca selected four interesting enough movies as part of his Guest Programmer stint, and those movies are showing up tonight. First, at 8:00 PM is the 1933 version of King Kong, starring Fay Wray as the blonde who gets noticed by the giant ape and carried up the Empire State Building. (Nobody ever shows the 1976 version any more.)
What's Up, Doc?, starring Barbra Streisand and Ryan O'Neal as two of several people whose lives are turned upside-down by a mixup of identical overnight travelling bags, follows at 10:00 PM.
At midnight, Rod Taylor brings The Birds to Tippi Hedren in quiet little Bodega Bay, CA, only for the birds already there to start attacking.
Finally, at 2:15 AM, Al Pacino needs to pay for his lover to have an operation, and the only way he can think of to get the money is to rob a bank, in Dog Day Afternoon.

In between What's Up, Doc? and The Birds is the short Stopover in Hollywood.

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